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Linux on a laptop


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#1 Guest_Guest-Razer_*

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Posted 18 September 2004 - 01:51 PM

My situation: I'm a complete and utter n00b when it comes to Linux (downloading my first distro, Mandrake 10 just now), but I'm not really new to computers. I'm about to start dual-booting my laptop (Sony Vaio PCG-GRT716S, P4 2.8GHz, 512MB PC2100, GeforceFX Go5600) with WinXP Pro and Mandrake, and although I can handle updating graphics drivers for my Windows installation, I know nothing about the methods involved in Linux.

Hopefully this is a simple matter - I just want to use the latest official nVidia release on my Mandrake installation, so what do I do once I'm up and running? I assume the latest Linux drivers available from nVidia aren't compatible with the GeforceFX Go cards, just as their Windows drivers aren't, and I'll need a modified .inf or something, but how do I go about integrating it, and can I just use the regular .infs from LV2G?

In as terms as simple as possible, can anyone describe the exact process? I don't know anything about the command line in Linux (yet :) ), so if I need to delve into that, make sure you tell me exactly what to do, since I won't be able to bridge any gaps with my own knowledge.

Thanks in advance.

#2 ®®®

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Posted 18 September 2004 - 05:00 PM

Pls wait for or PM "Almighty1", one of our moderators. As far as i know he was helping to develop Linux NV driver.

#3 mobilenvidia

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Posted 19 September 2004 - 02:03 AM

Linux, I downloaded the latest driver just the other day to see what makes them tick.
Unfortunenatly the driver is an all in one affair.
You download the driver then install via the command line.

There is no way of making a modified INF for it as it doeasn't have one :)
I don't know what GPU's the linux driver supports.

There might be trick to fool the installer (or what ever Linux uses) to support a mobile GPU.

Hopefully Almighty1 can shed light on this.

#4 silencer51

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Posted 19 September 2004 - 02:25 AM

The NVIDIA Linux drivers work fine on my Toshiba P10 under Mandrake 10. You just download the file and run the installation script. There are instructions on NVIDIA's website. All mobile GPUs are supported, but the tricky part is setting up the XF86config file (the configuration file for the XFree86 graphical environment). After some tinkering, I can run X at 1280x800 (my native resolution). I suggest you go to www.linux-laptop.net where you can find specific configuration tips for your laptop.

#5 Guest_Guest-Razer_*

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Posted 19 September 2004 - 03:24 AM

Thanks for all the replies. I guess I'll just have to give it a go and see what happens. I should be able to muddle my way through with the help of various message boards and my dad, who's a little more experienced than me in the ways of Linux.

That's one of the things I'm growing to love about the Linux community already - the extensive support they provide for each other, even though they do often go into far more detail than I can understand :)

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Posted 19 September 2004 - 10:33 PM

Just found this short conversation:

#7 smax

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Posted 29 September 2004 - 10:18 PM

The drivers do support all nVidia chips, and are fairly easy to install. Just make sure you read through the readme before you install to make sure you have everything you need. One thing about the drivers is they have a bad habit of flickering every once in a while, which the developers haven't really fixed since it came up quite a few releases back. Mandrake should come with a default nVidia driver that may run fine, but just play around with your drivers and find out what works best.

#8 Guest_Guest-Razer_*

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Posted 16 October 2004 - 04:50 PM

Well, after a couple of attempts at getting Mandrake installed, I've given up and am going for Gentoo instead. I was getting an 'interrupt lost' error on both /dev/hda and /dev/hdc before setup could even initialise on Mandrake, and given my limited knowledge of the OS I had no hope of getting it going.

Gentoo is so far going just fine (in the process of installing it right now), so I'll probably end up sticking with this.

Some very handy advice in all of the posts so far, but I've reassessed what I want to do with Linux. I really just want it as a development suite (Fortran and C++) and may be a little university work (OpenOffice or something), and I won't bother doing much gaming on it, so I may just leave the default video drivers on there. Is there any real advantage to getting the update nVidia reference drivers, or would I just have to cope with the flickering smax mentioned, while receiving no other gain?

#9 smax

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Posted 18 October 2004 - 09:41 PM

OOhhhh... if it's your first time with Linux, don't install Gentoo. It may run great and be great, but you need to know a bit about what you are doing. If you get frustrated or screw up somewhere, try Fedora Core 2 for a while then move up. Like I said before, the default drivers are fine as far as normal use goes, but for some reason they don't support 32 bit color so pictures look grainy, and and dimming or movie sequences slow way down so it isn't very pretty. the flicker problem really isn't that bad at all, just a little annoying at times, so really, the nVidia drivers are the way to go. For speed/good looks, download the nVidia drivers. If you don't want to mess around with a couple config files and don't mind bad color and slow performance, the regular drivers are fine.

EDIT: If you do choose to run Gentoo, I would suggest not getting the drivers through portage and just download them straight from the nVidia site. On my first install of Gentoo, I had quite a few problems with the portage drivers adn installing them.