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Old 07-01-2003, 12:39 PM   #1
Registered: Jul 2002
Location: Easton, PA
Distribution: Debian, Kubuntu, Arch
Posts: 116

Rep: Reputation: 15
Lightbulb Putting Debian on my Dell laptop

Debian has become my desktop distro since January. I love the ease of upgrading packages and keeping everything 'fresh' in the unstable branch. I've decided to purge my Dell Inspiron laptop and get rid of Mandrake and Windoze. Should I just use the deffault Debian installer or use Knoppix and then switch over to Debian unstable by updating the source file and doing 'apt-get dist-upgrade'? I'm going to download the latest version of Knoppix tonight and see if it recognizes my wireless card. I know the last version of Knoppix I tried (about 6 months ago) worked like a champ with my 3com NIC (and the rest of my hardware). Any suggestions?
Old 07-02-2003, 06:49 AM   #2
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2003
Location: Missouri, USA
Distribution: Debian (Knoppix), SuSE 8.1
Posts: 21

Rep: Reputation: 15
Because of video issues on my HP Pavilian 5495, I chose to go the Knoppix way. One complaint that some people have with Knoppix is that you aren't given the option of using more than one filesystem, but for me, that's not an issue (not on my laptop anyway). The downside to doing the Knoppix hdinstall is that it installs everything, which is a whole lot more than I need. But, I have about 20Gb more than I need on my harddrive, so it really does matter. Knoppix does a wonderful job of recognizing my hardware that it saved a whole bunch of time in configuration.

One suggestion I'll make: When booted into the Knoppix CD, there is a KNOPPIX menu, under which is an option to save the Knoppix configuration. If you are having any problems with video, input devices, wireless cards, etc _after_ doing a hdinstall (but which work fine when booting to the CD), just boot back to the CD and use the save option. It will save a tar of various configuration files. Be warned, though, that it saves full paths, so if you untar it without backing anything up, it will overwrite current configuration.

Old 07-05-2003, 02:33 AM   #3
Registered: Mar 2002
Location: Studio City, CA
Distribution: Debian (Sarge-Sid)
Posts: 76

Rep: Reputation: 15
For my Fujitsu P2000, I installed a bare naked Woody (Ewww.... that's a nasty image, now isn't it?), set the default distro to testing, installed X and Gnome from unstable, built a custom 2.4.21 Kernel, ALSA, PCMCIA and wlan-ng from sources.

Now, I can muck around with ACPI, laptop-net, longrun and other fun stuff.

You'll learn a whole lot of Linux-fu (well, Debian-fu, which is mostly Apt-fu, anyway), but I'd have to call this the "hard way".



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