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Journal: Sigh...

Journal by biglig2

Burn a decent copy od CD3 and off we go. Kinda doesn't boot into KDE though... sigh... google is our friend; switchdesk kde
I put my crap usb keyboard on, it works very nicely. That's good. Sound card didn't seem ot work when I tested it.
Thunderbird, Firefox go on easily.
Switch to the chooser version of the login to save clicking. Nice.
Run up2date and go to lunch.
A certain degree of strugle since it sees a kernel update, isn't sure if it should install it, and I foolishly tell it to go ahead, then google for that update. It appears to be a bad one. Luckily aborting seems to work.

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Journal: Been a while...

Journal by biglig2

But, now I'm back on a laptop for mainstream production, and now I have some OSS running as one of my key production apps (Firefox, natch) then time for another go.

Since my laptop goes with me, I need a machine permanently at my desk. Obvious answer is to put WinXP on the desktop, because then Outlook can clean out my spam, and my remote control software can connect to my servers. But, I have a bad feeling I might need Samba in a few months, so I'm going to run it on Linux for a while, increase my skill set.

What Distribution? Well, RHEL is what we would probably buy if we were going into production (PHB has gotta be able to sue someone), so I'm going for Fedora. Not the same thing, but free as in beer, and I expect that things like the location of config files etc. will be close to what RHEL uses.

So, Bittorrent down the CDs, burn them, move my data off, boot from Fedora Core 3 CD1. Hardware, BTW, is a P4 Dell Optiplex, pretty modern, with a XVGA LCD panel (so I have room on my desk for it). It will have a USB keyboard later (I have a crap but tiny one at home that will save more space).

Start a graphical install. I'm manly, so skip the media check. X loads after a bit of probing. English, English, UK.
The fonts look rather good, I must say.

I'll begin with Workstation - a good basic start. I'll maybe need to add Samba later. Allow automatic partitioning - what the hell are LVM volume groups? Ah, interesting, swap and / go in a volume group, so I can add to them via another disk. Nice. /boot seperate. Fair enough.

Grub, DHCP on eth0, enable firewall, allow ssh and SMTP inbound (might want to play with mail serving later, I am a mail admin after all). SELinux is extra security, enable it. English UK, GMT, root password of "hello" (yeah, right!).

Customize the packages. Gnome or KDE, Gnome or KDE.... KDE. Also XFCE, as an alternative. Add Thunderbird (Evolution always a bit top heavy, although it seems to come with an Exchange connector now, so it stays), Lynx, Samba, Terminal Server, TN5250, lots of admin tools.

Off we go, formatting the file system. Time for some coffee and a bun.

User Journal

Journal: Sound, that's the problem, sound

Journal by biglig2

This is so frustrating. I can't switch the laptop to Linux without the sound working, since that is 80% of what I use the damn thing for.

I'm feeling the urge again and the MP3 collection is zooming over the LAN to my desktop as we speak.

Perhaps a simple install of a commercial OS is in order. I could make a very simple Mandrake or RedHat (rpm -e --nodeps lm_sensors) that installs quick and play with modprobe until it works...

Well, some planning. I think I will squeeze in a 600Mb Windows partition. That will let me do bare minimum while kicking Linux.

User Journal

Journal: Another go. Will I never learn?

Journal by biglig2

OK, off comes the Win2K, on goes Redhat 7.2 I mean, it's the most popular distro, I must be able to get t to work. ac owns a fecking thinkpad 600.

OK, install, surprise surprise, no sound.

Run sndconfig, which detects a CS4614/22/24, which it does not support.

Alsa? Download it,but need to get the kernel source. Can't find it on the CD, bah. DL DL DL.

Going home for a sleep.

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Journal: Mandrake 8.1 now installed.

Journal by biglig2

All very nice. Sound not there although card was detected.

From /var/log/messages:

Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: Crystal 4280/46xx + AC97 Audio, version 1.28.32, 17:27:37 Sep 23 2001
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: Card found at 0x50100000 and 0x50000000, IRQ 11
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: Thinkpad 600E (unsupported) (1014:1010) at 0x50100000/0x50000000, IRQ 11
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: AC'97 write problem, reg = 0x0, val = 0x0
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: AC'97 read problem (ACCTL_DCV), reg = 0x0 returning 0xffff
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: ac97_codec: Primary ac97 codec not present
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: cs_ac97_init() failure
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: AC'97 write problem, reg = 0x0, val = 0x0
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: AC'97 read problem (ACCTL_DCV), reg = 0x0 returning 0xffff
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: ac97_codec: Primary ac97 codec not present
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: cs_ac97_init() failureJan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: AC'97 write problem, reg = 0x0, val = 0x0
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: AC'97 read problem (ACCTL_DCV), reg = 0x0 returning 0xffffJan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: AC'97 read problem (ACCTL_DCV), reg = 0x0 returning 0xffff
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: ac97_codec: Primary ac97 codec not present
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: cs_ac97_init() failure
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: AC'97 write problem, reg = 0x0, val = 0x0
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: AC'97 read problem (ACCTL_DCV), reg = 0x0 returning 0xffff
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: ac97_codec: Primary ac97 codec not present
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: cs_ac97_init() failure
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: create - never read card ready from AC'97
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: probably not a bug, try using the CS4232 driver,
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: or turn off any automatic Power Management support in the BIOS.
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: cs46xx_probe()- cs_hardware_init() failed, retried 5 times.
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: probe()- no device allocated
Jan 22 12:11:08 GHHStinkPad kernel: cs46xx: Unable to detect valid cs46xx device

That can't be good. Time for some googling. Hmm.. Using slashdot to cut & paste between my laptop and desktop eh?

Hang on, what's that? "probably not a bug, try using the CS4232 driver, " eh? Lets see. HardDrake seems not to offer the cs4232, but maybe it's not the mechinsm to change the driver from what is detected.

Poke poke at modules.conf but no good. Have a try with sndconfig but it moans whether I use 46xx or 432x.

I'm using these settings for the 432x (from a win2K device manager)
irq 7, dma 0&3, irq 530 (also using 388 and 280)
io 330 irq 9

User Journal

Journal: Back on the StinkPad

Journal by biglig2

Aww, I like my Thinkpad really. OK, another go. Mandrake 8.1 fixes the kernel problem (8.0 on a thinkpad, the trackpoint doesn't work) so lets try that. Surely a shiny modern distro can get the sound working? Alan Cox has a 600E for flips sake!

Soo...Chug chug, on goes the Mandrake. Putting Gnme and KDE on. Worth a try, and with the funky gdm (kdm? xdm? ) it's easy to swap between the two.

I put Mandrake on a desktop first to look at it and their rpmdrake package for installing stuff seems neat. For the Stinkpad something that comes on 3 CDs beats Debian since I haven't a fast net access at home, so being able to install stuff from CD will help, hopefully.

It's churning, still churning, at the "l"s now, which is not so bad since G and K are before that in the alphabet ;-)

Some notes on mandrake sound, both +ve and -ve, from mandrakes forums:

Q:I have an IBM Thinkpad 600e with a Crystal sound card that does not want to work. lspnp -v is as follows:
0e CSC0100 multimedia controller: audio
io 0x0530-0x0537
io 0x0388-0x038b
io 0x0220-0x0233
irq 5
dma 1
dma 0

I have tried loading both the alsa and kernel modules and the sound worked under Debian kernel 2.2.18. Any suggestions?
A:My successes have only been with 2.2 kernels.
Vendor: Cirrus Logic / Crystal Semiconductor
Device Name: Crystal Semiconductor CS4239 / ISA and Crystal Semiconductor CS4610 / PCI
CS4239: ISA/ SRS 3D audio /FM synthesis / 16-bit playback and record
CS4610: PCI / decodes AC3 into stereo / MPEG-2 audio decoding

OSS light configuration for CS4239
Put the following lines into /etc/modules.conf (or conf.modules for some older distributions).

alias sound-slot-0 cs4232
options cs4232 io=0x530 irq=5 dma=1 dma2=0 mpuio=0x330 mpuirq=5
options opl3 io=0x388

Now as root, first run depmod followed by modprobe sound-slot-0.

The sound modules should now be loaded (you can check with lsmod)

If you are going to compile your own kernel, make sure you select the following options for OSS Light Sound support (note that the following can vary a bit depending on the kernel version):
Sound card support = M
OSS sound modules = M
Support for Crystal CS4232 based (PnP) cards = M

ALSA 0.59x configuration for CS4239
ALSA (Advanced Linux Sound Architecture) is meant to replace OSS as the soundsystem for Linux.
At the moment it is not included with any standard kernels yet, although some Linux distributions are including it already (e.g. SuSE).

In most cases however, ALSA will have to be downloaded and installed by the user itself. ALSA can be found at

The following entries in /etc/modules.conf (or conf.modules for some older distributions) should do the trick in getting ALSA running on the ThinkPad 770X and 770Z with the CS4239 soundchip, and also provide OSS emulation so existing applications will still work. At the time of writing (9-Jan-2001) the latest version of ALSA (0.5.10a) still does not work with the PCI CS4610 chip in the ThinkPad 770X and 770Z models, and so the ISA CS4239 soundchip is the only possibility to get sound.

# ALSA native device support
alias char-major-116 snd
options snd snd_major=116 snd_cards_limit=1
alias snd-card-0 snd-card-cs4236
options snd-card-cs4236 snd_index=0 snd_id=cs4239 snd_isapnp=0 snd_port=0x530 snd_cport=0x538 snd_mpu_port=1 snd_fm_port=0x388 snd_dma1=1 snd_dma1_size=64 snd_dma2=0 snd_dma2_size=64 snd_irq=5
# OSS/Free emulation
alias char-major-14 soundcore
alias sound-slot-0 snd-card-0
alias sound-service-0-0 snd-mixer-oss
alias sound-service-0-1 snd-seq-oss
alias sound-service-0-3 snd-pcm-oss
alias sound-service-0-12 snd-pcm-oss

After adding these entries, run as root first depmod followed by modprobe snd. This should cause the modules to get loaded (you can check with lsmod).

The software volumes in ALSA upon initialization are turned down (and muted) all the way, so you will have to use a mixer control utility to turn them up before sound can be heard.

If you are going to compile your own kernel, then just make sure that base sound support is compiled. No OSS modules need to be compiled (but can be, just make sure they don't get loaded).

My success has been with OSS

User Journal

Journal: You ain't a hacker until...

Journal by biglig2're running the latest kernel ;-)

Download 2.4.16

Thomas Hood sez you then:

mv linux-2.4.16.tar.gz /usr/src
cd /usr/src
tar zxvf linux-2.4.16.tar.gz
mv linux linux-2.4.16
cd linux-2.4.16
cp ../linux-previousversion/.config .config
this copies the current config, as a base for xconfig
make xconfig choose your options

make dep
make bzImage
make modules
sudo mv arch/i386/boot/bzImage /boot/vmlinuz-2.4.16
sudo cp /boot/
sudo cp .config /boot/config-2.4.16
sudo make modules_install

Then modify lilo to boot using this image instead of the 2.2.17

Thomas provides the config for 2.4.13ac5 which I base my install on almost entirely, except I change the xircom net crd for the tulip_cb and the pcnet drivers (modular of course)

After compilation, and a brief confusion when I forget to change the symblink to /vmlinuz, I get it on the go.

It chokes when it checks the root system - "The superblock could not be read or does not describe a correct ext2 filesystem. . The kernel mailing list suggests this is because devfs has been compiled in and it is trying to automount /dev. devfs=nomount passed to the new kernel does the biz.

All works but no PCMCIA. Perhaps I need the modules. Worth a try, though, is my discovery that i can apt-get 2.4.16 . No, try that and theres a load of crap about intird that I don't understand.

OK, now have 2.4 and 2.2 on the go. Nothing in /lib/modules/2.4 so need to get those.

Redo make modules and make modules_install. Get some, but doesn't load my gold card. Also things like the cs4232 are missing.

Perhaps redo the make xconfig? OK. Poke a t a few things. tulip_cb is now part of tulip in 2.4 so change that. add the cs4232. etc. mak && mak && make && make. copy, vi, lilo, reboot. I'm getting blase, is that a good sign?
  Must be, becaus enot only does it all now work, but the d-link works fine too. The cs4232 deosn't work yet, but wer're getting there. Good chance I can get tpctl and such working so I can examine how the card is configured. Of course, putting the Psion back in my cupboard gives me an impetus to get mwave modem going too.

User Journal

Journal: Sounding Off

Journal by biglig2

Next priority is sound. as I mentioned before, it may be related to resources. So, I've decided to hold off on getting Alsa. The kernel / OSS drivers allegedly work, so since they are simpler to configure, lets go with them.
IBM say "Audio. The ThinkPad 600E uses a CS4239 chip for FM synthesis and 16-bit playback and record of waveform data. The driver included with Red Hat Linux that is most suited to supporting this audio chip is the CS4232 driver, which generically supports the CS4232 and chips that are compatible with it. When configured as described later in this document, the CS4232 driver provides basic audio support on the ThinkPad 600E. "

I'll start simply with manually enabling it -
modprobe sound
modprobe cs4232 io=0x530 irq=5 dma=1 dma2=0 mpuio=0x330 mpuirq=5 synthirq=-1 synthio=-1

The reply is in the negative:
/lib/modules/2.2.17/misc/cs4232.o: init_module: Device or resource busy
Hint: insmod errors can be caused by incorrect module parameters, including invalid IO or IRQ parameters /lib/modules/2.2.17/misc/cs4232.o: insmod /lib/modules/2.2.17/misc/cs4232.o failed /lib/modules/2.2.17/misc/cs4232.o: insmod cs4232 failed

So, what's up. Resources? cat proc/interrupts etc. say 5 and 530 are free.
To be sure I'm doing it right, apt-get sndconfig
It too has problems. It's probe finds an unknown device of type 1013:6001. Google says that 2.4.5.ac1 knows this is a "CS 4610/11 [CrystalClear SoundFusion Audio Accelerator]" so, a later Kernel than 2.2.17 will help. I should move to 2.5 anyhowsie.

Anyhow, it doesn't manage the modprobe either.

Later: moved to 2.4.16 (not 2.5, ta!)

Now perhaps I can use Thomas Hood's ideas about tpctl and checking the settings of the card. apt-get it. No /dev/thinkpad. Need to load the thinkpad module?

User Journal

Journal: apt-getted up a treat

Journal by biglig2

After a certain degree of strugle I now have a fairly functional base Linux system. I spent a while getting XNView, my favorite image browser, to work - the installer uses csh, but it was clear enough what the script was doing; then you need to make sure you get all the motif libraries.
Also, the super rdesktop RDP client is working when I connect to one of my Terminal servers. Not the main one though, it's being refused by the server. Odd that. Licensing?

Plenty more to work on. xmame sucks over. Ooooh, svga. I like console stuff, its nice and fast.

User Journal

Journal: Potato? woody? Syd? Hamm?

Journal by biglig2

Well, the time comes to decide if it is better to hack at getting the hardware to work, or to upgrade to a different distribution. Well, upgrade to woody, despite the subject line.

Tricky. Maybe it is best to bite the bullet and go for it now. After all, I may need to upgrade all sorts of packages before I am thru.

Also rdesktop, the native Linux TS client is only in woody and it is one of my desired apps that I reckon I can get going simply enough.

Part of the problem with Debian is that Thomas Hood uses nice shiny AC kernels, so I kinda need to keep up if I am to depend on his configuration notes.

Oh heck, go for it!

download thomas' sources.list; # out SID; apt-get update; apt-get dist-upgrade.

User Journal

Journal: Debian now installed on the stinkpad

Journal by biglig2

Installed. X works without much Gnomicness, but there's Gnome-Terminal that I can just igure out how to load, so it can be used for the moment until I apt-get update etc.

Interesting. The GoldCard doesn't work. lsmod shows pcnet_cs is loading. When I insert the card I get a message that eth0 has had a ne2000 in it. but ifup eth0 says "ignoring unknown interface eth0"

Try ifconfig eth0 and it works. So it's a DHCP issue. running pump manually, and ba-da-bing everything works.

I'll add my d-link as well and try the same trick. BTW, since the module is tulip_cb not tulip_cs, not surprised it didn't work under progeny. ;-) OK, it doesn't like that too much. But the LAN card is working.

vi /etc/apt/sources.list (and for the moment configure to use the normal US addresses)
apt-get update
apt-get dist-upgrade
apt-get install sawmill mozilla

A little tweak to update-alternatives, and replacing xdm with gdm means I'm running Gnome quite nicely, and in fact am now posting this on slashdot from the stinkPad. Super.

User Journal

Journal: Initial tests with Progeny

Journal by biglig2

I thought it might be helpful to test witha Progeny install first. Learn what I can, then drop back to "real" Debian later.

Install is straightforward and I'm soon running 2.2.18 with gnome. Lights come on on the D-Link but can't ping anything.

This is probably the first thing to get working. Then I can bein to apt-get etc. as I try and get the rest on the go.

The PCMCIA-HOWTO-4 is a useful resource.

First trick is configuring the PCMCIA card database, /etc/pcmcia/config, to recognize the D-Link.

cardctl ident tells me the manufacturing ID codes the card presents to the PC. I know (thanks to an old Mandrake install where this actually worked) that the D-Link is really a tulip_cs. So, add some lines saying:

card "D-Link DFE-680TXD"
            manfid 0x13d1, 0xab02
            bind "tulip_cs"

kill -HUP cardmanager to reboot it.

Not much cop... Hmmm. pcmcia_core is loading, but not tulip_cs.
Ah, modprobe tulip_cs sas it can't find it. says the driver is in v3.1.25 of the PCMCIA package. Debian stable and testing use 3.1.22-0.2potato while unstable is at 3.1.29-4. Hmmm.

At this point I'm inclined to switch to real Debian now. There's no value add from Progeny, especially now it is not even something Progeny suggest you use ;-)

time for a re-install. Woo hoo.

This one I will do with both the D-Link and the Psion GoldCard, so I cna at least get some apt-get on the go. Since tulip_cs and so on didn't seem to be installed. Later.

User Journal

Journal: Back to the StinkPad

Journal by biglig2

Well, I have seen XP and I don't like it. Some bits are visiually pleasing (The background fading to grayscale while waiting for shutdown is excellent) but I've only got 190Mb in my laptop.

Soooooo... can Linux deliver?

Thinkpad 600. Thomas Hood's excellent page is a wonderful resource. Surely my simple needs for this box can be met?

Connect to networks via a Psion Dacom Ethernet+Modem (OK) or via the ThinkPad Modem + a D-Link DFE-680TXD (Great!)
Play MP3s
Dial an ISP very occasionally
Access my SMB network so i can download the MP3s
rdesktop to access my terminal server
quick and dirty, console based POP mail reader.

And that's about that. A browser, a spreadsheet, and some sort of Word Processor (LaTeX would do) would be nice bonuses.

Where ahs it gone wrong before? Sound. Never got that working. Something I suspect to do with the fact that the BIOS on a Stinkpad is configured in software. The D-Link can be made to work (does in Mandrake) but I have to configure it to use the tulip_cs driver. Which is complicated. Once I get these sorted I can work on the various thinkpad specific things like APM and the onboard modem.

User Journal

Journal: Todays fun - starting Debian

Journal by biglig2

This took ages, but eventually an xsession script to make that nifty x2vnc run automagically on startup.\

Trick is to accept that a local .xsession is needed but understand that it overwrites the default (which is not to run a default .xsession but to make assumptions) and so you need a last line to start gnome.

# visual indicator in case I start X as root
if [ "$user" = "root"];
          xsetroot -solid orange
else xsetroot -solid darkred

#do x2vnc, telling /. nothing but where my monitors sit ;-)
x2vnc -east -passwd ~/foo &

exec x-session-manager

And it all seems to work. ;-)

the xsetroot stuff is of limited use, so I took it off.

Man is the best computer we can put aboard a spacecraft ... and the only one that can be mass produced with unskilled labor. -- Wernher von Braun