The Intrepid Ibex on Dell Inspiron 8600

My Dell Inspiron 8600 is now too old to run the Ubuntu Desktop, so yesterday I installed Xubuntu Intrepid Ibex 8.10.
The Xubuntu Xfce desktop is very nice, and seems quite faster compared to gnome Ubuntu desktop: it still misses some facilities, like dragging and dropping icons from the menu to the desktop and the panels, but at the moment this is the only drawback against the gnome desktop. Well... actually I think that the Xfce menu editor is unusable. And it's still to early for me to say a final word about all the other applications and settings utilities.

Regarding the hardware support, everything worked fine out of the box, except for the graphic glx acceleration, that there were no way until now to make it run.
This is the hardware of my laptop, working fine:

$ lspci
00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation 82855PM Processor to I/O Controller (rev 03)
00:01.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82855PM Processor to AGP Controller (rev 03)
00:1d.0 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801DB/DBL/DBM (ICH4/ICH4-L/ICH4-M) USB UHCI Controller #1 (rev 01)
00:1d.1 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801DB/DBL/DBM (ICH4/ICH4-L/ICH4-M) USB UHCI Controller #2 (rev 01)
00:1d.2 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801DB/DBL/DBM (ICH4/ICH4-L/ICH4-M) USB UHCI Controller #3 (rev 01)
00:1d.7 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801DB/DBM (ICH4/ICH4-M) USB2 EHCI Controller (rev 01)
00:1e.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801 Mobile PCI Bridge (rev 81)
00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corporation 82801DBM (ICH4-M) LPC Interface Bridge (rev 01)
00:1f.1 IDE interface: Intel Corporation 82801DBM (ICH4-M) IDE Controller (rev 01)
00:1f.5 Multimedia audio controller: Intel Corporation 82801DB/DBL/DBM (ICH4/ICH4-L/ICH4-M) AC'97 Audio Controller (rev 01)
00:1f.6 Modem: Intel Corporation 82801DB/DBL/DBM (ICH4/ICH4-L/ICH4-M) AC'97 Modem Controller (rev 01)
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: nVidia Corporation NV28 [GeForce4 Ti 4200 Go AGP 8x] (rev a1)
02:00.0 Ethernet controller: Broadcom Corporation BCM4401 100Base-T (rev 01)
02:01.0 CardBus bridge: Texas Instruments PCI4510 PC card Cardbus Controller (rev 02)
02:01.1 FireWire (IEEE 1394): Texas Instruments PCI4510 IEEE-1394 Controller
02:03.0 Network controller: Intel Corporation PRO/Wireless LAN 2100 3B Mini PCI Adapter (rev 04)

And this is the first time I see the ACPI fully working: I can suspend and hibernate the laptop, and of course restart and shutdown.

The nvidia graphic acceleration doesn't work, I tried also to install nvidia-glx-96 and nvidia-glx-71 drivers, but they are failing at compile time (nvdia-96-kernel-sources or nvidia-71-kernel-sources) while installing on synaptic. Also the tool envyng didn't helped. So trying and retrying I messed up X configuration a couple of time, so when X restarted at low graphic mode was asking me to troubleshoot the problem or to restore with default configuration. This troubleshooting menu needs improvements: it is far to be easy to use, but it is much better than nothing. At least, it wasn't the usual hell with editing Xorg configuratiton files to restore to a nicely working X configuration at high resolutions supported by my hardware.

I think that ubuntu guys should install by default the bunch of codec needed to watch web streaming, the flash plugins, and all the other multimedia stuff, regardless if the packages are "restricted". I don't know anybody that would renounce to listen mp3 or watch shows on internet just because the codecs are proprietary.

Some little improvement on Xfce, and we could really think to replace slowliness of gnome once and forever. Linux desktops need to be faster. Definitely.

One Response to “The Intrepid Ibex on Dell Inspiron 8600”  

  1. 1 Raj

    i have ubuntu 9.04 running on my dell inspiron 8600 and it works flawlessly. nvidia drivers are easily installed and everything works almost out of the box.

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