Fedora Core 3 On Dell Inspiron 9200
This page is no longer maintained as I have upgraded to FC4. FC4 works
quite well. Some of the information here may still be of use for FC4. I have also
experimented with Fedora Core 5 Test 2. FC5T2 took a small amount of effort
to get installed due to video issues during installation.
- 13 April 2005
- Updated kernel and OpenAFS to 2.6.11-1.14_FC3.
- No longer necessary to update ipw2200 drivers. They are included in kernel.
- ALPS touchpad working in enhanced mode.
- 25 February 2005
- Updated kernel, ipw2200, and OpenAFS to 2.6.10-1.766_FC3
- 6 February 2005
- Updated kernel, ipw2200, and OpenAFS to 2.6.10-1.760_FC3
- 3 February 2005
- Updated OpenAFS information.
- 22 January 2005
- Added I9200 Forums link.
- Reboot hang with HAL seems fixed with updates.
- 19 January 2005
- Updated kernel to 2.6.10-1.741. Updated ipw2200 drivers.
- Installed just released ATI Radeon drivers.
- 16 January 2005
- Added OpenAFS.
- Added /etc/cpuspeed.conf to regulate CPU speed.
- Media keys via Gnome.
- Gentoo Linux reference.
Basic installation of Fedora Core 3 went smoothly. There are still
a few kinks to be worked out. The biggest problem was that after every
other boot, the laptop froze. See below for a fix.
Overall, I am very pleased with this laptop running Fedora Core 3.
Warning: Some of what is written below is from memory and
may contain mistakes. Let the buyer beware.
||Status Under Linux
|Pentium M 1.60GHz
||Speed step works.
|17" 1920x1200 UWGA Display
|ATI RV350 - Mobility Radeon 9700 M10
||Reported as 9600. 3d acceleration with ATI drivers.
|NEC DVD+/-RW ND-6500A
||CD read, DVD read, DVD write tested.
|Firewire - Ricoh R5C552 IEEE 1394 Controller
|Ethernet 100Base-TX Broadcom BCM4401-B0
|Internal Intel PRO/Wireless 2200BG
||With ipw2200 drivers.
|Sound Card: Intel 82801DB/DBL/DBM - AC'97
|ALPS Glidepoint Touchpad
||Works fully with 2.6.11 kernel and modified xorg.conf.
||Wireless mouse, flash card reader, iRiver H340, Wacom tablet tested.
|Suspend to RAM
||May not work with 3d acceleration.
|Suspend to Disk
I shrunk the Windows partition and created Linux partitions with
tools from www.sysresccd.org.
I chose to have a 6 Gb Fat32 partition to share data between Windows
and Linux, two 10 Gb Linux partitions so I could install two different
versions of Linux at the same time, and one ~19 Gb partition for /home.
I also have a 1 Gb swap partition. I left the Dell Utility and Restore
Disk /dev/hda: 60.0 GB, 60011642880 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 7296 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/hda1 1 6 48163+ de Dell Utility
/dev/hda2 * 7 1026 8193150 7 HPFS/NTFS
/dev/hda3 6839 7295 3670852+ db CP/M / CTOS / ...
/dev/hda4 1027 6838 46684890 5 Extended
/dev/hda5 1027 2301 10241406 83 Linux
/dev/hda6 3577 5945 19028961 83 Linux
/dev/hda7 5946 6710 6144831 b W95 FAT32
/dev/hda8 6711 6837 1020096 82 Linux swap
Initial Fedora Installation
I used the four Fedora Core 3 iso CD's from
I chose the workstation installation as I will do code development.
Installation went without any problems.
I had to edit the /etc/X11/xorg.conf file to use add a specification
for the 1920x1200 display:
Viewport 0 0
Modes "1920x1200" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"
Viewport 0 0
Modes "1920x1200" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"
The following doesn't appear to be necessary following recent updates:
To fix the problem of the laptop freezing after every other boot:
This solution came from mattimeo90 via
It does have the side effect that auto-mounting of CD/DVD/USB doesn't work.
- Move "/etc/rc.d/rc3.d/S98haldaemon" to "/etc/rc.d/rc3.d/K98haldaemon"
- Move "/etc/rc.d/rc5.d/S98haldaemon" to "/etc/rc.d/rc5.d/K98haldaemon"
I followed the instructions on
The Unofficial Fedora FAQ
to set up yum. I disabled the "unstable" and "testing" entries (add "enabled=0").
I then did a full update as well as added all the additional packages listed.
I could not add the mplayer plug-in (not found). To use the updated kernel, one
may need to edit the file /etc/grub.conf (default=0).
I made two tweaks.
- Web pages load slowly due to a problem with looking up
domain names with ipv6 turned on. A snappier response can be had by editing
/etc/modprobe.conf to include the lines:
# Speed internet access
alias net-pf-10 off
alias ipv6 off
(Unless, of course, you need ipv6).
- Modified /etc/cpuspeed.conf as suggested for a
in order to regulate cpu speed:
OPTS="-i 2 -t /proc/acpi/thermal_zone/THM/temperature 65 -a /proc/acpi/ac_adapter/AC/state -p 10 25"
Speed varies between 600 MHz to 1600 MHz as load changes.
ALPS Touch pad
All the bells and whistles work with the 2.6.11 kernel (works in basic mode with pre-2.6.11 kernels).
You have to modify your /etc/X11/xorg.conf file. The relavent sections are listed below.
Identifier "single head configuration"
Screen 0 "Screen0" 0 0
InputDevice "Touchpad" "CorePointer"
InputDevice "Mouse0" "SendCoreEvents"
InputDevice "Keyboard0" "CoreKeyboard"
Option "Device" "/dev/input/mouse0"
Option "Protocol" "auto-dev"
Option "LeftEdge" "120"
Option "RightEdge" "830"
Option "TopEdge" "120"
Option "BottomEdge" "650"
Option "FingerLow" "14"
Option "FingerHigh" "15"
Option "MaxTapTime" "180"
Option "MaxTapMove" "110"
Option "EmulateMidButtonTime" "75"
Option "VertScrollDelta" "20"
Option "HorizScrollDelta" "20"
Option "MinSpeed" "0.4"
Option "MaxSpeed" "1.0"
Option "AccelFactor" "0.02"
Option "EdgeMotionMinSpeed" "15"
Option "EdgeMotionMaxSpeed" "30"
Option "UpDownScrolling" "1"
Option "CircularScrolling" "1"
Option "CircScrollDelta" "0.1"
Option "CircScrollTrigger" "2"
Option "TapButton1" "1"
Option "TapButton2" "2"
Option "TapButton3" "3"
Note that these settings are NOT the same as for a Synaptics touchpad (even though the ALPS touchpad
uses the same driver). And despite including lines for multifinger taps, the touchpad doesn't seem to
ATI Radeon Drivers
ATI has just released (17 January 2005)
under x.org. Version 8.8.5 of the drivers needs to be patched for the 2.6.10 kernel.
See the thread on
for details. For the mouse device, enter /dev/input/mice.
The XConfig file generated by fglrxconfig needs to be edited:
The new configuration file needs to be renamed xorg.conf.
I may remove the driver if it causes problems with resuming from a
suspend, as rumored.
- Change the font path to:
- Change the keyboard driver from "Keyboard" to "kbd".
- Change the screen resolution to 1920x1200.
livna-unstable yum repository now has rpms (I have not tried):
As of the 2.6.11 kernel(?), the drivers are included in the kernel.
You still need to install the firmware. The first time I booted after
upgrading to a 2.6.11 kernel the wireless connection failed to come up. After
manually starting it once, it has worked fine since. I've also commented
out the ipw2200 lines in the suspend.sh script. The wireless
connection was not coming back automatically with the suspend... one had
to open the Network Device Control panel, turn off the wireless
connection then turn it back on. With the lines commented out, the connection
Instructions on how to install the Intel drivers can be found at
I used the Fedora Core 3 packages from
Download and install versions of:
Make sure that the kernel module (kmdl) matches your kernel
You may also need to install wireless tools if they
are not already installed.
After mucking around with the configuration program I finally got
the wireless card to work. One thing I had to change manually was
to edit the file /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth1
to change "TYPE=ethernet" to "TYPE=wireless".
Suspend to RAM
As of 13 April 2005 fails with "mDNSResponder not stopped" error.
I turned off with /sbin/chkconfig --level 345 mDNSResponder off
as I can't imagine needing the service. I also turned of nifd
the same way. Both appear to be useful for iTunes, which I don't and never
Following an example for a
I got the 9200 to sleep and wake up via a suspend to RAM. There was one
problem with the wake up and that was that the clicking via tapping the touchpad
(but not the buttons) stopped working. With the latest updates, this isn't a problem.
I also had to add unloading and reloading of the ipw2200 driver, but this again
is no longer a problem.
To get suspend to ram to work:
Then create: /etc/acpi/actions/suspend.sh
(don't forget to chmod +x):
# Script to drive the system to S3: suspend-to-ram
# Based on script by andersen_REMOVE_@_THIS_hep.phy.cam.ac.uk
# Step 1: Preparing sleep:
if (-e /suspending) then
echo "Already in the process of suspending. Please be patient."
# USB doesn't suspend without unloading first
# Ditto for wireless
# Save the system time
/sbin/service ntpd stop
# Step 2: Send sleep command via ACPI
echo mem > /sys/power/state
# Step 3: Wake-up and reload
# Restore USB
# Ditto for wireless
# Restart network time service
/sbin/service ntpd restart
#xinit /bin/false -- :1
Note: I did not see any effect in commenting out the Load "dri"
line in /etc/X11/xorg.conf as suggested. Also note, if a suspend
fails then the file /suspending is left which prevents suspend from working
The volume controls can be made to work with Gnome via the
Applications->Preferences->KeyBoard Shortcuts dialog. They
do not seem to effect the subwolfer. The subwolfer can be
controlled by the "Master Mono" control Applications->Sound and
Video->Volume Control. It is turned down by default.
Note, that there are several ways to
control sound. If the Media keys don't work or the "Master"
control in the Volume Control panel doesn't seem to work, check that
you have the sound turned up in the Gnome applet.
The Start/Stop key will work with Rhythmbox but not the CD player.
An OpenAFS client is trivial to install thanks to packages from
You need to install only
To start AFS as root type:
It should automatically start if a network connection exists at boot. Note:
check the kernel you are using. AFS is precompiled for specific kernels.
Things to fix
Created on 7 January 2005.
Last updated on 13 April 2005