Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Ubuntu on Compaq Presario F500

Installing Ubuntu Gutsy on Presario F500

Recently Leena got a new laptop [ Presario F500] . At its base, there is a 64-bit AMD Turion Processor and 1 GB RAM. To add to this there is a Wide Screen [15.4''] and Altec Lansing Speakers. But this is not good enough for Windows Vista [packed by default] to run.

Ubuntu Installs normally except certains glitches.

1. LiveCD causes the system to hang.

  1. Once you see the splash screen of Ubuntu's main menu press F6
  2. You will get the kernel command line, append vga=792 or vga=791 to that line and press Enter or b
  3. Now X server should start and you will see the Ubuntu Desktop
The reason for this hack is probably because it has a widescreen display.

2. Machine during boot up.
  1. Post Installation, your machine will hang because of the above mentioned problem.
  2. In grub edit the kernel command line and the params mentioned above.
  3. This may not be enough for your system to bootup. It wasn't surely enough for me.
  4. I had to remove the params quiet and splash also.
  5. Make these changes permanent once the system boots up by editing the /boot/grub/menu.lst .
NOTE: Removing quiet and splash, although necessary will not show any splash screen while the OS is booting. You will directly see to the login window.

3. Getting Wireless/Compiz working.
  1. Unfortunately Wireless doesn't work out of the box.
  2. You will need the Broadcom wireless binary driver.
  3. Goto Menu System-> Administrator -> Restricted Driver Manager .
  4. It will say Broadcom driver not in use. Select the checkbox associated with it .
  5. It will ask for a link from which to download firmware . You will get it here .
  6. Once the state changes to in use. You are successful.
  7. Similarly to get Compiz working, select the NVidia Driver which is not is use.
    It will download the driver and again once the state changes to in use. You are successful.
  8. This will need a system reboot.
4. Nonfree Flash doesn't work in Firefox.
  1. The non-free Adobe flash player embedded in Firefox will surely not work although package manager will say its installed, as there is no 64bit version yet.
  2. Use gnash [ open source/free flash player] . It works just fine.
  3. People seem to crib about java plugin for Firefox not working on 64bit boxes, but it worked fine for me.

1. Tom On Identity
2. Ubuntu's wireless Docs