Linux Developers cannot seem to... - Portable

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  1. Linux Developers cannot seem to...


    I guess I am showing my ignorance here, so maybe someone will enlighten
    me?

    Why can't developers get notebook hardware to work under linux? I was
    thinking of buying a T-Pad, but inbrowsing tuxmobile, I see even they
    have problems with linux, especially related to dailup, which I still
    use and other communication hardware.

    Also most do not seem to work with the APMs. Unfortunately, tuxmobile
    does not seem to have a search engine that will allow you to find the
    one model that does work, IF such a beast exists. Similarily I was ready
    to puchase a so called linux notebook from more than one vendor, only to
    find that the vendor cannot guarantee that the linux THEY install will
    work with the hardware. One company linuxcertified supposedly
    "certifies" (whatever that means) their laptops to work with linux,yet
    in further searching I come across a review that they in fact do not
    work with APM and run very hot. Windows sucks I am certain, but at least
    it seems to be more or less universal.

  2. Laptop hardware support (was: Linux Developers cannot seem to...)

    On Wed, 13 Apr 2005 19:15:05 +0000 (UTC), Ferdinand staggered into the
    Black Sun and said:

    Your Subject: is not specific and could be seen as inflammatory. Fixed.

    > Why can't developers get notebook hardware to work under linux?


    Usually, it's because the pieces of hardware in question have no specs
    available without an NDA or don't exactly follow the published
    standards. ACPI hardware is really bad about deviating from the
    standards IIRC, and ACPI is fairly complicated.

    > thinking of buying a T-Pad,


    Did you mean "IBM Thinkpad"? Should work reasonably well. Which
    model#?

    > but in browsing [tuxmobil.org], I see even they have problems with
    > linux, especially related to [dialup]


    All laptops have LoseModems. The trick is getting a laptop with a
    supported LoseModem. If it's a Lucent, f'rexample, "emerge ltmodem" (or
    whatever distro-specific command you use to install the Lucent evil
    binary-only modules) followed by "modprobe lt_serial", and you fire up
    kppp, put in username+password+phone#, and you're set.

    > Also most do not seem to work with the APMs.


    Er, what? APM has worked perfectly on all the Thinkpads I've owned.
    Then again, my A22p is a few years out of date now, and the only thing I
    really need is suspend-to-RAM. YMMV.

    > Unfortunately, tuxmobile does not seem to have a search engine that
    > will allow you to find the one model that does work, IF such a beast
    > exists.


    I think you're approaching the problem in the wrong way. First, figure
    out what you want from your laptop. Pick 4 or 5 laptops that satisfy
    those conditions. Look up those 4 or 5 laptops on tuxmobil.org or
    linux-on-laptops.net or Google://"$MAKE $MODEL Linux" . Pick the one
    that has the fewest problem reports and/or most comprehensive HOWTO
    that explains how to get everything working.

    If you could enumerate your requirements and be specific about them
    ("3-hour battery life, DVD-ROM, 1600x1200 screen, weighs less than 6
    pounds, USB 2, includes Integrated Yak Shaver"), we could make
    suggestions.

    > Similarily I was ready to puchase a so called linux notebook from more
    > than one vendor, only to find that the vendor cannot guarantee that
    > the linux THEY install will work with the hardware.


    This surprises you? All Software Sucks, All Hardware Sucks, All Vendors
    Suck. I would trust a guarantee from a computer hardware/software
    vendor about as far as I could spit a wombat.

    Q: What's the difference between a computer salesman and a used car
    salesman?
    A: The used car salesman knows he's lying.

    > One company linuxcertified supposedly "certifies" (whatever that
    > means) their laptops to work with linux, yet in further searching I
    > come across a review that they in fact do not work with APM and run
    > very hot.


    URL for this review?

    > Windows sucks I am certain, but at least it seems to be more or less
    > universal.


    Whatever you want. FWIW, I've been running Linux on a number of
    Thinkpads since early 2000, and I have yet to run into a problem with
    Linux on them that I couldn't solve with a quick Google. HTH,

    --
    Matt G|There is no Darkness in Eternity/But only Light too dim for us to see
    Brainbench MVP for Linux Admin / mail: TRAP + SPAN don't belong
    http://www.brainbench.com / Hire me!
    -----------------------------/ http://crow202.dyndns.org/~mhgraham/resume

  3. Re: Linux Developers cannot seem to...

    Ferdinand writes:

    > I guess I am showing my ignorance here, so maybe someone will enlighten
    > me?
    >
    > Why can't developers get notebook hardware to work under linux? I was
    > thinking of buying a T-Pad. Windows sucks I am certain, but at least
    > it seems to be more or less universal.


    Well, there's the problem right there. Because it's the
    default, everyone writes drivers for it. Because everyone writes
    drivers for it, it becomes the default.

    Anyway, I have a Thinkpad. I can't thing of a feature on it
    that doesn't work. APM, wireless, movie-playing, USB, iPod, Wacom Pad,
    DHCP, joysticks, external video card, PCCard storage driver for my
    digital camera, ECCM cable for my cell phone. The dialup was a pain to
    configure, but it worked fine when I needed it.

    Elf

  4. Re: Laptop hardware support (was: Linux Developers cannot seem to...)

    Dances With Crows wrote in
    news:slrnd5r2mn.3eh.danSPANceswitTRAPhcrows@samant ha.crow202.dyndns.org:

    > On Wed, 13 Apr 2005 19:15:05 +0000 (UTC), Ferdinand staggered into the
    > Black Sun and said:
    >
    > Did you mean "IBM Thinkpad"? Should work reasonably well. Which
    > model#?


    You tell me? I checked several in the T series on tuxmobile and they all
    had hardware problems of one kind or another. Nothing seems to work well
    out of the box, especially the winmodems. But also the wireless,
    ethernet,etc. It's like buying a notebook obligates you to work out bugs
    to get ANY version of linux to work. I don't mind learning the os
    commands and so forth, but spend 1-2 grand on a "linux" notebook and
    then have to hunt around for solutions to what is supposedly a better os
    that simply does not work with the hardware? Seems a bit much to me.



    >> but in browsing [tuxmobil.org], I see even they have problems with
    >> linux, especially related to [dialup]

    >
    > All laptops have LoseModems. The trick is getting a laptop with a
    > supported LoseModem. If it's a Lucent, f'rexample, "emerge ltmodem"
    > (or whatever distro-specific command you use to install the Lucent
    > evil binary-only modules) followed by "modprobe lt_serial", and you
    > fire up kppp, put in username+password+phone#, and you're set.


    Do you have a list? Links at the linmodem site for this are not working
    as of today, I get internal server error messages regardless of where I
    am coming from on those links.

    >
    >> Also most do not seem to work with the APMs.

    >
    > Er, what? APM has worked perfectly on all the Thinkpads I've owned.
    > Then again, my A22p is a few years out of date now, and the only thing
    > I really need is suspend-to-RAM. YMMV.
    >
    >> Unfortunately, tuxmobile does not seem to have a search engine that
    >> will allow you to find the one model that does work, IF such a beast
    >> exists.

    >
    > I think you're approaching the problem in the wrong way. First,
    > figure out what you want from your laptop. Pick 4 or 5 laptops that
    > satisfy those conditions. Look up those 4 or 5 laptops on
    > tuxmobil.org or linux-on-laptops.net or Google://"$MAKE $MODEL Linux"
    > . Pick the one that has the fewest problem reports and/or most
    > comprehensive HOWTO that explains how to get everything working.
    >
    > If you could enumerate your requirements and be specific about them
    > ("3-hour battery life, DVD-ROM, 1600x1200 screen, weighs less than 6
    > pounds, USB 2, includes Integrated Yak Shaver"), we could make
    > suggestions.


    Ok, which dell models in the last year or so are most compatible? I see
    alot of links for dells on linux, but again the several I checked could
    not find a single one that works out of the box. Again the linmodem page
    has links for this info, but was not working today. Can you name even
    one notebook of any mfg. where all the hardware works, including the
    modem with ANY version of linux? If you can fire away, I'm all ears.

    >
    >> Similarily I was ready to puchase a so called linux notebook from
    >> more than one vendor, only to find that the vendor cannot guarantee
    >> that the linux THEY install will work with the hardware.

    >
    > This surprises you? All Software Sucks, All Hardware Sucks, All
    > Vendors Suck. I would trust a guarantee from a computer
    > hardware/software vendor about as far as I could spit a wombat.


    That is not true. There is good software out there, but it is few and
    far between. Ditto hardware. The problem becomes sifting out the 80 per
    cent that is bad. Ok, more like 90%. But obviously linux has a long ways
    to go to be considered a good OS, imo, since a good OS would be much
    more universal. The winmodem problem has been around for a long time.
    One would think someone would have come up with a solution.

    >
    > Q: What's the difference between a computer salesman and a used car
    > salesman?
    > A: The used car salesman knows he's lying.
    >
    >> One company linuxcertified supposedly "certifies" (whatever that
    >> means) their laptops to work with linux, yet in further searching I
    >> come across a review that they in fact do not work with APM and run
    >> very hot.

    >
    > URL for this review?


    I do not have it right now, will try to post later. Was a linux hobbiest
    page. Guy purchased two units from them. Neither were 100% compatible
    even though they claim to have "linux certified" notebooks.

    >
    >> Windows sucks I am certain, but at least it seems to be more or less
    >> universal.

    >
    > Whatever you want. FWIW, I've been running Linux on a number of
    > Thinkpads since early 2000, and I have yet to run into a problem with
    > Linux on them that I couldn't solve with a quick Google. HTH,


    Well the number of posts asking for help to get linux running on
    virtually all notebooks belies your last comment. If it was as easy as
    you imply they would not need all the special information pages to help
    people get linux to actually WORK on their notebooks.

  5. Re: Laptop hardware support (was: Linux Developers cannot seem to...)

    Ferdinand > writes:
    > You tell me? I checked several in the T series on tuxmobile and they all
    > had hardware problems of one kind or another. Nothing seems to work well
    > out of the box, especially the winmodems.


    Give up on the damn winmodems, they are not worth it. Get a pc card modem.
    Those work fine.

    > But also the wireless, ethernet,etc. It's like buying a notebook
    > obligates you to work out bugs to get ANY version of linux to work.


    Thinkpad ethernet works fine. I'm using it right now. Wireless is
    more problematic. I prefer using a PC card over installing darkware
    to run the built-in stuff.

    > Ok, which dell models in the last year or so are most compatible?


    I think Thinkpads are still the best bet.

    > I see alot of links for dells on linux, but again the several I
    > checked could not find a single one that works out of the box. Again
    > the linmodem page has links for this info,


    Give up on the damn winmodems, they are not worth it. Get a pc card modem.
    Those work fine.

    > The winmodem problem has been around for a long time.
    > One would think someone would have come up with a solution.


    There is a solution: give up on the damn winmodems, they are not worth
    it. Get a pc card modem. Those work fine.

    > Well the number of posts asking for help to get linux running on
    > virtually all notebooks belies your last comment. If it was as easy as
    > you imply they would not need all the special information pages to help
    > people get linux to actually WORK on their notebooks.


    I've been using Linux on notebooks for 10+ years. I don't use the
    damn winmodems. I use PC card modems (or these days, DSL). Those
    work fine and I am a happy man. You have to give up on that obsession
    with using the damn winmodems. They suck even under Windows. Give up
    on them. They are not worth it. Your life will be much happier if
    you use a PC card modem.

  6. Re: Linux Developers cannot seem to...

    Ferdinand wrote:
    > I guess I am showing my ignorance here, so maybe someone will enlighten
    > me?
    >
    > Why can't developers get notebook hardware to work under linux? I was
    > thinking of buying a T-Pad, but inbrowsing tuxmobile, I see even they
    > have problems with linux, especially related to dailup, which I still
    > use and other communication hardware.
    >
    > Also most do not seem to work with the APMs. Unfortunately, tuxmobile
    > does not seem to have a search engine that will allow you to find the
    > one model that does work, IF such a beast exists. Similarily I was ready
    > to puchase a so called linux notebook from more than one vendor, only to
    > find that the vendor cannot guarantee that the linux THEY install will
    > work with the hardware. One company linuxcertified supposedly
    > "certifies" (whatever that means) their laptops to work with linux,yet
    > in further searching I come across a review that they in fact do not
    > work with APM and run very hot. Windows sucks I am certain, but at least
    > it seems to be more or less universal.


    I have a thinkpad T41. Everything works. But judging by your responses
    to others, that is not your requirement. You require that everything
    work straight out of the box, or at least with minimal tweaking. No
    linux distribution will do that. And several of the systems in the T41
    required some tricky software installation and setup. I don't believe
    that can be avoided if you install yourself.

    If you were installing a vanilla Windows distribution by yourself on a
    virgin laptop, you'd certainly have similar troubles. The only way it
    would be painless would be to use a specially tweaked distribution
    supplied by the manufacturer, which of course is what they do for their
    preinstalled machines.

    You have an option that meets your unstated requirement. Buy a laptop
    with linux pre-installed, e.g. from Emperor linux. Admittedly you have
    to pay a premium for them to do all the distribution tuning. But that's
    the game at the moment with linux.

    Ian Hutchinson.

  7. Re: Linux Developers cannot seem to...

    Ian Hutchinson writes:
    > I have a thinkpad T41. Everything works. But judging by your responses
    > to others, that is not your requirement. You require that everything
    > work straight out of the box, or at least with minimal tweaking. No
    > linux distribution will do that. And several of the systems in the T41
    > required some tricky software installation and setup. I don't believe
    > that can be avoided if you install yourself.


    I'm using an X40 with Fedora Core 3 and did absolutely nothing tricky.
    It just installed directly from the DVD from an external USB 2.0
    reader. It was the easiest install I've ever done. However, I'm not
    using the losemodem and I'm not using the internal wifi. Everything
    else works, though there's a minor dysfunction with the ACPI: when I
    restore the screen from power save, there's a band of junk at the top
    and I have to clean it up by pressing a few control key combinations.
    I could use APM instead, which fixes this problem, but I haven't
    bothered.

  8. Re: Linux Developers cannot seem to...

    Ferdinand writes:


    >I guess I am showing my ignorance here, so maybe someone will enlighten
    >me?


    >Why can't developers get notebook hardware to work under linux?


    It's easy...get the hardware dorks to release their stupid design docs
    on the various chipsets & you'd have the best drivers available!

    The alternative is reverse engineering, & some of the best at that
    don't have the $$$$$ to buy one of every whiz-bang thingy that comes
    out.

    --
    <> Robert Geer & Donna Tomky | |||| We sure |||| <>
    <> bgeer@xmission.com | == == find it == == <>
    <> dtomky@xmission.com | == == enchanting == == <>
    <> Albuquerque, NM USA | |||| here! |||| <>

  9. Re: Linux Developers cannot seem to...

    Ferdinand wrote:
    > I guess I am showing my ignorance here, so maybe someone will enlighten
    > me?
    >


    you are right. linux on the laptop still needs a bit playing around to
    get everything work. If you dont want it, you should not install linux
    on your laptop, but windowsXP.

    peter




    --
    http://www.goldfisch.at/know_list

  10. Re: Linux Developers cannot seem to...

    peter pilsl wrote:
    >
    > you are right. linux on the laptop still needs a bit playing around to
    > get everything work. If you dont want it, you should not install linux
    > on your laptop, but windowsXP.
    >


    I forgot to add:
    I run linux on laptops for years and I'm very happy with it. This
    postings are written on a DELL inspiron 4000 and everything is working
    fine, including the various extension-cards.

    peter

    --
    http://www.goldfisch.at/know_list

  11. Re: Laptop hardware support

    Ferdinand > wrote:
    > Dances With Crows wrote in
    > news:slrnd5r2mn.3eh.danSPANceswitTRAPhcrows@samant ha.crow202.dyndns.org:


    >> On Wed, 13 Apr 2005 19:15:05 +0000 (UTC), Ferdinand staggered into the
    >> Black Sun and said:
    >>
    >> Did you mean "IBM Thinkpad"? Should work reasonably well. Which
    >> model#?


    > You tell me? I checked several in the T series on tuxmobile and they all
    > had hardware problems of one kind or another. Nothing seems to work well
    > out of the box, especially the winmodems. But also the wireless,
    > ethernet,etc. It's like buying a notebook obligates you to work out bugs
    > to get ANY version of linux to work. I don't mind learning the os
    > commands and so forth, but spend 1-2 grand on a "linux" notebook and
    > then have to hunt around for solutions to what is supposedly a better os
    > that simply does not work with the hardware? Seems a bit much to me.


    The easiest way to verify if your laptop works with Linux. Just use
    the MEPIS Linux Live CD. This distribution also includes the Winmodem
    driver for a few chipset. If you can boot up the laptop with this
    Live CD, you should be able to tell what works and doesn't.

  12. Re: Laptop hardware support

    Alex_Yung/id=alyung wrote:
    >
    > The easiest way to verify if your laptop works with Linux. Just use
    > the MEPIS Linux Live CD. This distribution also includes the Winmodem
    > driver for a few chipset. If you can boot up the laptop with this
    > Live CD, you should be able to tell what works and doesn't.


    while this may give you a first indication, it does not tell you that
    the same things work with another distro and that you cant fix the
    things that dont work.

    Every distro has different kerneloptions, different X-preconfigs and so
    on and especially with ACPI, WLAN and sophisticated graphics lot of
    stuff is daily on the edge and coming out new on sourceforge or elsewhere.

    peter


    --
    http://www.goldfisch.at/know_list

  13. Re: Laptop hardware support

    peter pilsl wrote:
    > Alex_Yung/id=alyung wrote:
    >> The easiest way to verify if your laptop works with Linux. Just use
    >> the MEPIS Linux Live CD. This distribution also includes the Winmodem
    >> driver for a few chipset. If you can boot up the laptop with this
    >> Live CD, you should be able to tell what works and doesn't.


    > while this may give you a first indication, it does not tell you that
    > the same things work with another distro and that you cant fix the
    > things that dont work.


    Perhaps, you should look at this Live CD before you jump to
    conclusion. This Live CD give you the option of hard disk
    installation and it is based on Debian. You know exactly what version
    is installed ( dpkg -l | grep pkgName ). When you become more
    knowledgable with Linux, you know what to do once you know the version
    of a particular package. I have Debian and Mandrake (rpm based) in my
    laptop. I always make sure both of them are sync up in terms of
    software packages.

    > Every distro has different kerneloptions, different X-preconfigs and so
    > on and especially with ACPI, WLAN and sophisticated graphics lot of
    > stuff is daily on the edge and coming out new on sourceforge or elsewhere.


    > peter


    I don't understand why you are concerned with more than one
    distribution. All distributions use the same source code to compile
    the binary. Once you become a power user. You would start compiling
    from the source for your specific need.

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