First-time Linux on my T60p... Advise?

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mdlestat
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First-time Linux on my T60p... Advise?

#1 Post by mdlestat » Thu Sep 21, 2006 9:12 pm

After many years of exclusive Windows use, I'm ready to try something different-- and I want my T60p (2613) to be my platform of experimentation.

It's not my primary computer-- (my desktop is going to remain Windows, cause I like it that way :) ) -- and it's new enough that I don't have much of anything on there that's important, so no migration issues.

Looking around, I saw somewhere that SuSE is supported by IBM for our coms(?), though I don't know this for sure.

I have also heard around that the relatively new ubuntu is a possible good choice for a newer user-- as is Mandriva.

What I'm wondering is this-- I don't have any experience with Linux, but I'm a smart-ish guy, and don't need/want a crayola-level of anything to "get the feel" of it-- I hate watered-down -to-the-elementary-level stuff-- but I need help with choosing something that has my specific laptop in mind as far as full hardware compatibility, and intermediate/non-pro-enthusiast-level tech skill in day-to-day use.

I'm not doing anything fancy with my laptop-- at least not currently...I just use it for internet and Office-type stuff for school and work (OpenOffice, that is), and that kind of thing.

Any help would be great-- I want to hear from first-hand users with real advise-- one-word declarations of a given distro need not reply -- sorry, but I'm looking for ADVISE from Thinkpad users-- I've already been to the distro sites.

THANK YOU EVERYONE!!![/i]

wuyuren
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Suse 10.2 is good for you

#2 Post by wuyuren » Thu Sep 21, 2006 11:09 pm

Well, if you do not have ANY experieince, then I would suggest you start from SUSE. There might be only one difficulty -- make your windows/Linux live together on the same T60. This involves the partition and boot loader. Suse can auto partition for you, however, due to the existing partition for windows in T60, Suse will defautly choosing shrink your C partition which recognized as /dev/sda1, to its half size(if free space available on C) and make the rest of space to a extended partition(/dev/sda5) . then suse will put logic partitions within this extended partition, such as /dev/sda6 for / , /dev/sda7 for swap blah blah blah... Also, there is a hidden partition made by IBM for recovery purpose. this partition will be recognized as /dev/sda4. It is a primary partition.

Here is the problem, usually, we do not want Linux to overwrite the MBR of HDD. Bootloader (GRUB) has to be loaded either from MBR or from an active primary partition Overwrite MBR may cause your windows panic or in the future if you want to get rid of linux, you have to run additional steps to recover your MBR. Since SUSE automatically recommend to shrink your /dev/sda1 and put all Linux partitions in a extended partition, your grub cannot be loaded. Which means you cannot boot the suse.

To solve this, you have to change the partition schema. First, let suse detect your hdd and then you need to change the partition schema based on the one it generated. Delete the whole extended partition suggested by suse. Then create a primary partition (/dev/sda2). Make sure it starts right after the end of /dev/sda1 and make its size about 100M(this is more than enough, the whole grub and kernel image will take less than 50M) . Mount it as /boot. Then use the rest of space create extended partition. Create the / , /home , /swap within the extended parition. Make sure your extended parition ends before your IBM recovery parition. Size of your SWAP is recommended to be 2XRAM_SIZE if you plan to run large database applications. Otherwise 1.5XRAM is enought. Make sure you have the right file system type for each partition you created (/boot . / /home all needs to be Reiser, ext2 or ext3, /swap should be formated as swap)

After this, you need to change grub installation setting. Make sure it is installed to your parition which was mounted as /boot. In this case is /dev/sda2.

Then select all those packages and let the installer finish the rest of installation.
Accept 1024x768 setting in SAX2 first. do not change it. We can fix this later in the final step.
One finally thing you need to do is to install the ATI driver. (if your machine is using ATI graphic subsystem, if it is intel, go to intell to download the driver). After install the ATI driver(instructoin was included at ATI website, read it first before you proceed. I recommend you use the RPM method), and restart the X, you will get high resolution.

My network card is 3495ABG, intel pro 1000M , all these components works right after installation. Bluetooth also works. Audio works great. Only onething in my wish list: find a decent ITUNES substitution. Banshee sucks!
Last edited by wuyuren on Thu Sep 21, 2006 11:32 pm, edited 2 times in total.

wuyuren
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Location: USA

BTW-----

#3 Post by wuyuren » Thu Sep 21, 2006 11:18 pm

I posted these two messages under suse 10.1 :)
My t60 2.0G core duo, 2,0G RAM intel 3945ABG , 100G bluetooth, 15" SXGA

mdlestat
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Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2006 10:25 pm
Location: coastal NC, United States

#4 Post by mdlestat » Fri Sep 22, 2006 4:38 pm

thank you for your detailed response-- do you/ can you use the thinkpad updates with Linux installed?

wuyuren
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Location: USA

if you are refferring to thinkpad update in windows, sure

#5 Post by wuyuren » Fri Sep 22, 2006 9:58 pm

as long as you have windows running.

christopher_wolf
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#6 Post by christopher_wolf » Fri Sep 22, 2006 10:46 pm

One reason I would recommend keeping Windows on there is so that you can do the BIOS and EC updates easily. Otherwise, you are going to have to jump through some hoops to get such updates to work with Linux straight out. :)
IBM ThinkPad T43 Model 2668-72U 14.1" SXGA+ 1GB |IBM 701c

~o/
I met someone who looks a lot like you.
She does the things you do.
But she is an IBM.
/~o ---ELO from "Yours Truly 2059"

mdlestat
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#7 Post by mdlestat » Sat Sep 23, 2006 12:45 pm

Yes, it would make more sense to keep windows installed... and I'm embarassed to realize this late that there was a Linux section-- sorry about that!

Thank you!!!

BillD
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#8 Post by BillD » Sun Sep 24, 2006 7:56 am

Yes, leave Windows on your machine also. To partition your drive look into using QTPARTED. Just burn it to a CD using an ISO burner, like Nero. It's a linux program that boots up off of a CD, and it's free. I've used it manytimes with no troubles.

I've put SUSE 10.0 and Ubuntu 6.06 on my T23 with no problems. Both come with their own partitioner but I find QTPARTED easier to use and safer.

Good Luck...
1 T23 1.13 Mhz.SXGA+..512 RAM..Built in Wireless
1 T23 1.13 Mhz..256 RAM...
1 600e that now a 600x(500Mhz) with 256 RAM
1 600x(500 Mhz) with 327 Ram
1 600x upgraded to 600Mhz with 256 RAM

tilneford
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#9 Post by tilneford » Sun Sep 24, 2006 11:15 am

I've put SUSE 10.0 and Ubuntu 6.06 on my T23 with no problems. Both come with their own partitioner but I find QTPARTED easier to use and safer.
I second the recommendation to use QTParted. I've used it for years with no problem. With it, I know exactly what is going to happen before I make the changes. With the partitioners supplied with the distros that I have used, I've always been left with a nagging concern about what was really going to happen with each next click of a button. Some distro partitioners do not seem to clearly explain what they are going to do next. Uncertainty in disk partitioning can be quite unsettling. But it's been awhile since I've used any distro partitioner (because of using QTParted), and it they are like most everything else in Linux, they may have improved a lot in a short amount of time.
- dave

X60s 1704-4JU 250G 5400RPM 3G Ram X6base CDRW/DVD

mdlestat
Posts: 12
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2006 10:25 pm
Location: coastal NC, United States

#10 Post by mdlestat » Sun Sep 24, 2006 9:21 pm

Ok-- I guess I'll go with SuSE as my first install, and I appreciate the QTParted advise-- anything that makes things easier is great.

THANKS for the help, when I have time to get this rolling, I'll probably be back in this section hunting for troubleshooting tips and tweak help-- wish me luck!


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