r17 - 18 Mar 2010 - 09:45:15 - HeikkiToivonenYou are here: OSAF >  Journal Web  >  ContributorNotes > HeikkiToivonenNotes > UbuntuGutsyGibbonOnLatitudeD820

Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon) on Dell Latitude D820

You may find my notes on running Ubuntu 6.06 LTS (Dapper Drake) on Dell Latitude D820 of interest as well.

Component Status Notes
Intel® Core™ 2 Duo T7600 (2.33GHz) 4M L2 Cache, 667Mhz Dual Core DONE Works
15.4 inch Wide Screen WSXGA+ LCD Panel, 1680x1050 pixels DONE Works
2.0GB, DDR2-667 SDRAM, 2 DIMMS DONE Works
100GB Hard Drive, 9.5MM, 7200RPM DONE Works
8X DVD+/-RW w/Roxio Digital Media™ and Cyberlink Power DVD™ DONE Works
512MB NVIDIA® Quadro NVS 120M TurboCache™ DONE Works The Open Source nv driver supports suspend out of the box, but does not provide the fancy visual effects. Also, I found a bug which causes the computer to power off with nv driver. The closed source NVidia drivers don't support suspend by default, but there is an easy solution to the black screen coming from suspend (Just in case: xorg.conf, "Device" section Option "NvAGP" "1", and POST_VIDEO=false, SAVE_VBE_STATE=false in /etc/default/acpi-support).
Intel® 3945 802.11a/g Dual-Band Mini Card DONE Works
Wireless switch DONE Works
Wireless activity light DONE Works
Wireless activity light, side Does not work
Dell Wireless® 350 Bluetooth Module DONE Works
NetworkManager Problems Can be a bit slow to reconnect after suspend, but has still connected pretty reliably. Seems overly optimistic about state; sometimes shows connected when not connected. If that happens, and it does not connect automatically, only way to reconnect is to kill NetworkManager and restart it it (ps aux, then restart with same options). Turning networking or wireless on or off with NetworkManager does not seem to work (used to work in Dapper).
Bluetooth light Does not work
Wired network Untested
9 Cell Primary Battery DONE Works
Touchpad DONE Works Touchpad is too slow. Set the following options in xorg.conf for synaptic: "MinSpeed" "0.7", "MaxSpeed" "3", "AccelFactor" "0.03".
Trackpoint DONE Works
Mouse buttons DONE Works
USB Mouse DONE Works
Firewire Untested
IR Untested
Modem Untested
PCMCIA cards Untested
Express cards Untested
Sound/loudspeakers DONE Works
Microphone Untested
Display brightness DONE Works
Display sleep DONE Works
Suspend Problems Works out of the box with Open Source nv drivers (tested only little). With closed source NVidia drivers, solution to the black screen coming from suspend. I've still experienced a few cases where unsuspend results in black screen. At best I have gotten two weeks of daily suspends without problems.
Hibernate Problems Tested only with closed source NVidia drivers twice. First time coming up from hibernate, USB mouse, network failed to come up after hibernation - could not get them to work until reboot. Second time I got normal boot after power on, so not sure if it failed to hibernate or come out of hibernate. Third time worked. A real surprise, since this was working almost perfectly in 64-bit Feisty. Would be nice to find a solution for this one.
Fn keys Problems Fn+CRT/LCD does not work.
Skype Untested Test call to echo service worked.
Wengophone Does not work When I call to to echo test number 333, I don't hear anything. Trying different audio settings didn't seem to help.
X10Lite Untested Haven't tried real call yet but sound test was OK.
Virtual console DONE Works
Trackerd Problems Seems to work, but consumes about 50% CPU when machine should be idle, so I disabled this.
Automatic software crash reports DONE Works Disabled in default install but you can enable it with: gconftool-2 --type bool --set /apps/update-notifier/show_apport_crashes true. Ubuntu bug 137406.
Automatic window placement Problems Seems like new windows just appear in top left corner and stack on top of each other. In some cases gnome-terminals do not stack. I think windows were "tiled out" in Dapper.


Headset with microphone DONE Works
Dell 1702FP (external monitor) Problems System > Administration > Screens and Graphics seems to support another display with closed source NVidia drivers, but trying to configure this always crashes the application. Fn+CRT/LCD does not work. You can do this by hooking in the other device, then restarting X Server, and there is a guide to set up xorg so that it automatically chooses the proper Xorg layout so you don't need to hand edit xorg.conf. Haven't tried this automatic way myself, yet. nvidia-settings seems also offers a facilities to handle external displays, but I was unable to get anything to display on Dell 1702FP even though it was detected.
Dell 1703FP (external monitor) DONE Works Using nvidia-settings it detected the display and was able to extend and clone my display (TwinView).
Canon Optura 200MC Untested
HP PhotoSmart C5180 All-in-One Printer, Scanner, Copier DONE Works Plug and play!
Maxtor OneTouch III Mini 160 GB USB Drive DONE Works
Cingular 8525 Internet Sharing over Bluetooth Problems On most days I only get about 2 minutes of connectivity before it disconnects. In Ubuntu, bring up Bluetooth preferences (for example right-click on applet). Make visible and connectable to other devices. In 8525, turn on Bluetooth and make device discoverable (mode setting). In devices tab, Add new device... and select your Ubuntu computer from the list. You will probably be prompted to set a Bluetooth password. Now in Ubuntu the Bluetooth applet should be blinking; click it to bring up the Bluetooth password dialog and enter the same password you did not the device. Paring is now done, and does not need to be repeated. Next, in Ubuntu: hcitool scan. Make note of the MAC address of your phone. Edit /etc/default/bluetooth or connection will drop after a couple of minutes: PAND_ENABLED=1 and PAND_OPTIONS="--role PANU --connect <phone's MAC address>". That setting is also permanent, and does not need to be changed. The following will need to be done for each connection. In 8525, Start > Programs > Internet Sharing. Select Bluetooth, click connect (you don't need to make Bluetooth discoverable anymore if it asks). Once that is done, in Ubuntu sudo pand --role PANU --connect <phone's MAC address>. Next sudo dhclient bnep0. Networking! To kill the connection from Ubuntu, sudo pand -K.


I had a pretty complicated installation because I wanted to have a triple boot system, and I needed to resize partitions. I have 8 partitions: Dell rescue, Windows XP, 32-bit Gutsy /, extended, 32-bit /home, 32-bit swap, 64 bit, 64-bit swap. I had used triple boot before on this computer, but I wanted to make the 64-bit partition smaller to give more room to 32-bit home. I find that having 10 GB for Ubuntu system files is plenty - I haven't hit 50% after a year of use.

I first installed the 64-bit system. I needed to to select manual partition configuration in the installer. Even then it was giving me trouble as it was trying to format two swap partitions for this system. I ended up deleting one swap, so that the 64-bit installation only ever saw one swap partition. I also run into some trouble because I had not connected to my wireless hub before starting the install, as the installer tries to connect to Ubuntu repositories at the end of install and if it can't it will comment out all repositories. Easy to recover, but annoyiing. I prepared for the 32-bit installation by renaming my 32-bit homedir to home.dapper. NOTE: After I had installed the 32-bit system and tried to boot again into the 64-bit system, the boot stops with a disk error. Ctrl+D at the prompt seems to continue ok, but this is scary.

Next came the 32-bit system. This time I could find no way to get the installer format two swap partitions, so I just went with that.

Booting up I realized I needed to edit /boot/grub/menu.lst so that I could recognize what were the 64-bit boot entries.

Booting into the 32-bit system I realized to my dismay that I could not unmount the other partitions that Gutsy had helpfully placed links on my Desktop for. I ended up manually editing /etc/fstab to comment out the Dell, Windows XP and the 64-bit swap partition.

I used gparted to look at the partitions, and unmount them etc. Unfortunately gparted crashes after every operation. For some reason the Ubuntu crash reporting tool does not work for me; it worked in the Live CD for some reason.

I disabled Evolution Alarm from Session preferences (don't use Evolution) and Tracker (it was consistently running one CPU at 50%) - I might miss tracker, though.

Went to System > Preferences > Keyboard > Layout Options > Alt/Win key behavior and selected "Super is mapped to the Win-keys" because otherwise my mapping of keyboard shortcut prefs Window key + 1/2/3/4 does not work (takes me to workspace 1-4).

I enabled the restricted NVidia drivers because of bug XXX. I tried the eye candy (Appearance, Visual Effects preference), and it is nice but probably uses more power and most importantly breaks my Window key mapping and Ctrl+Shift+Tab to switch to previous window. I later found out that you can install compizconfig-settings-manager, which will let you tweak the keyboard. Seems like this should be installed by default and enabled for custom settings from appearance settings.

Disabled system beep. Made a green-on-black gnome-terminal setting with 10 pt bold font, and raised the scrollback to 5000 lines.

Selected screensaver, made it lock screen.

Changed power settings to suspend on lid close, hibernate on low power.

Got rid of top gnome panel. My bottom panel has: Ubuntu menu, show desktop, Fx, Tb, Help, Calculator, gnome-terminal, Xemacs, nautilus shortcuts. On the right hand side I have two CPU monitors (one for each, take way too much room, grr), system monitor, workspace switcher (4), search tool, notification area, sound icon, date and time.

Changed session settings to launch onegnome-terminal and XEmacs on startup. I'd like it to start other apps in other workspaces, but I don't know how. I typically run Fx also in workspace 1, Eclipse in 2, Tb in 3 and VMWare Server in 4.

Installed sun-java. I had already installed Eclipse into my home dir, ~opt and ~bin (should find the link how this was done).

Installed xinetd, downloaded VMWare Server rpm, converted with alien --script -d.

Installed Tb+Enigmail, and some Fx extensions.

Crash Boom Bang. Ok, so I probably did something stupid... I was using the closed source NVidia drivers. Switched to open source drivers, but did not reboot like it instructs to do (why reboot needed?). Instead I restarted X server (logged out, and hit Ctrl+Alt+Backspace just in case as well). Then tried to hibernate. When it came back from hibernation, I got a black screen with garbled mouse cursor. Didn't see a way to get out of this, so powered off. Trying to reboot I had massive disk errors on / and /home partitions. Installed Ubuntu again (after all, it is pretty fast). I decided to try and repair /home due to the modifications I had made. Unfortunately didn't pay careful attention to what it was fixing. Copied some settings files over from backup just in case. Tried to start Eclipse, which failed. Copied Eclipse and my workspace from backup which fixed the issue. Failed to connect to some of may email servers, so replace .mozilla-thunderbird folder with backup. There may still be some failures awaiting me with other software, but I'll see how t his goes.

Installed x11vnc, kcachegrind, kcachegrind-converters.

Strange issue with sound. Everything had been working properly, but then I started the Audio Settings Management (alsa-utils) service, and lost sound. Took me a while to figure out that by right clicking the volume control and changing the PCM value I got sound back. Now it seems alsa-utils has to be running, otherwise I get no sound.

Worked in Dapper, Broken in Gutsy

  • KDar. Does not seem to be included. Seems there are plans for Ubuntu's own backup PC solution, but this seems to be somewhat primitive in planned features and incomplete implementation.
  • dash is the default script shell, which broke some of my bash scripts. Simple solution is to change scripts to start with with #!/bin/bash. Or fix the scripts to not use bashisms.
  • My Xephyr-using scripts broke such that gnome-terminals that should start inside the Xephyr (DISPLAY=1) instead start in DISPLAY=0. No idea yet why this is so. Solved by switching to xterm.
  • kcachegrind-converters had a broken dependency, but it seems this has been fixed.
  • NetworkManager? can not enable/disable networking. If I have wireless, suspend, then wake up in location with wireless, NetworkManager? may still show good connection. If that happens, after a while NM CPU usage jumps to 50%. Only way to get networking back is to kill and restart NM.
  • Recovering from suspend always fails with the following procedure: Make sure you have wireless connection, suspend, take laptop to a location where there unknown wireless hotspots, wake, suspend, take laptop back to working wireless area, wake up. Always results in black screen, recoverable only by powering off. Seems to have been working the past week after I followed the "black screen from suspend advice more closely".

Bugs I have filed: https://bugs.launchpad.net/~hjtoi

-- HeikkiToivonen - 20-22 Oct 2007

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