Install Ubuntu Gutsy on a Dell D630 Laptop

December 2007

Global Feeling

Good (but expensive) laptop. Screen not huge, but sufficient, and very clear (not glossy, you can work with some light behind yourself). Keyboard is comfortable.

What works?

Almost everything works, after some time configuring it. didn't get suspend-to-Disk to work, and did not test bluetooth, the internal modem and the CD/DVD burner (yet).

No kernel recompilation, but I had to use some non-free modules (the wifi driver ipw3945 relies on a piece of non-free software).


The touchpad was incredibly slow. This made it more usable (in /etc/X11/xorg.conf):

Section "InputDevice"
        Identifier      "Synaptics Touchpad"
        Driver          "synaptics"
        Option          "SendCoreEvents"        "true"
        Option          "Device"                "/dev/psaux"
        Option          "Protocol"              "auto-dev"
        Option          "HorizEdgeScroll"       "0"
        Option          "SHMConfig" "true"
        Option          "MinSpeed" "0.5"    # touchpad speed when moving slowly
        Option          "MaxSpeed" "2.0"    # touchpad speed when moving fast
        Option          "AccelFactor" "0.10"
        Option          "CircularScrolling" "on"
        Option          "EdgeMotionMinSpeed" "0.5"

qsynaptics or gsynaptics can help too


Suspend-to-Disk (aka "Hibernate") doesn't work for me. The system resumes right after starting to hibernate, or doesn't resume.

Suspend-to-RAM (aka "Suspend") works, but you have to stop the wifi daemon manually before :

sudo ipw3945d-2.6.22-14-generic --kill

Then, for example, Menu System -> Quit -> Suspend. Around 5 seconds later, the laptop is almost off, with the power light blinking slowly. Press the power button to resume

Adding the following line to /etc/hibernate/common.conf allows me to simply run sudo hibernate to hibernate :

OnSuspend 10 ipw3945d-2.6.22-14-generic --kill


Sound didn't work out-of-the-box. But I got a simple solution :

sudo aptitude install linux-backports-modules
sudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base

Ajouter la ligne

options snd-hda-intel model=dell-m42

Screen projection

Overhead projector worked for me. You might need to play a bit with screen resolution (see grandr, or the "Display Geometry Switcher applet from the gnome-randr-applet package). When the laptop screen resolution is different from the overhead's one, with OpenOffice, you need to start OpenOffice with only the overhead activated, and then only press Fn + f8 to get feedback on the laptop's screen. Otherwise, OpenOffice will try fullscreen badly centered.


Matthieu MOY
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Last updated: December 2007.

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