The story so far (2): Success with Debian 4.0?

Finally re-installed Debian 4.0 “etch” on the Toshiba Satellite Pro M10. It’s a dual-boot installation with Windows XP. I installed from a CD (I only used CD 1, .iso image available on the Debian website here. Using Jigdo to download is highly recommended. Find out more here).

One thing to note when burning an .iso image to a CD: Don’t burn the file you downloaded like any other file. It would be just a CD with the .iso file on it, not a proper bootable CD. For more instructions visit http://www.debian.org/CD/faq/#record-windows.

Installation went fine and was a breeze. One thing I did was to select a primary mirror instead of a local mirror (they were only secondary mirrors). I don’t know if this helped in the package downloading and installation. It should be possible to add more repositories / mirrors later, but it seems I have problems doing that.

Most hardware was auto-detected, with the following exceptions:

  • wireless was not detected (although it was switched on during the installation), probably cos the LAN cable was plugged in as well.
  • Also, the display goes crazy when the lid is closed and the screen switches off (something to do with nVidia graphics card?).
  • The Fn button isn’t working on the laptop but was fixed by searching for the package ‘fnfxd’ and installing it (will do a separate writeup on that later).
  • Finally, the touchpad doesn’t respond to movements to click the mouse; i have to use the buttons for that.

A nice touch is the selection of environments (by tasksel): After selecting a “Desktop environment”, the GUI is automatically installed and configured to startup upon booting the comp.

A niggling problem has to do with control of the fan (it doesn’t seem to be working)..have installed some packages to deal with it but it still doesn’t seem to be working.
Also, a worrying trend is that CPU usage frequently hits 100%, lagging the comp quite seriously..this usually occurs when a new window is opened in GNOME and while surfing the net (with Iceweasel). After opening the root terminal and checking out top, it seemed that most CPU usage was taken up by Xorg (to do with the X window system). Coupled with the fact that the display goes crazy when the lid is closed, this probably has something to do with the nVidia graphics card. Will be on the lookout for a fix.

Brief todo list (things to clear up):

  • power / fan
  • mouse
  • wireless
  • cpu usage / nvidia?
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