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Most Unusual Linux on Tablet Situation


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#1 OFFLINE   teacher

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Posted 13 January 2006 - 07:37 PM

Here I sit with my brand new Gateway

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Gateway M280EbMicrosoft® Windows® XP Tablet PC EditionIntel® Pentium® M Processor 750 (1.86GHz, 533MHz FSB, 2MB L2 cache) 1024MB 533MHz DDR2 SDRAM (2-512MB modules) ATI Radeon X600 64MB Graphics w/ HyperMemory Technology 14.0" WXGA TFT Active Matrix (1280 x 768 max. resolution) with Rotating Hinge for Tablet FunctionalityGateway Executive Stylus w/ Continuous Sensing Technology80GB 5400rpm Serial ATA hard drive Modular 8x Multi-Format Double Layer DVD Writer (DVD±R/±RW/CD-RW)7-in-1 media card reader (Memory Stick®, Memory Stick Pro®, MultiMediaCard™, Secure Digital™, xD Picture Card, Mini Secure Digital™:, RS-MultiMediaCard™)Integrated 802.11b/g wireless networking cardPrimary 8-cell Lithium ion battery with AC pack and 1 yr. limited battery warrantyTPM - Embedded security chip for user authentication and data protection (version 1.2 ready)Full-Size Keyboard and EZ Pad® Pointing DeviceIntegrated sound and stereo speakers, headphone/speaker jack, and mic jacks
I figured there was hope for it.  After all, there is wacom tablet support in PCLos.  The tablet is supposed to be recognized as that.  I seem to have a major keyboard problem.  I tried booting from the .92 disk.  The screen is too large but I can work around that.  Then I discovered that the keyboard acts as if the function key is always pressed down.  My thoughts were that they goofed on the computer and had the toggle backwards.  Back to Windows and I find it is right.  I put the cd in and it boots with the right letters in the right places up to the KDE log in screen.  Seems good.I log in and watch the gui load.  It is too large for the screen but I know how to adjust that.  But the adjustment requires a reboot - not much good from a live CD.  I can't get to the menu at the bottom because it is off the screen.  I try the "windows" key to get my menu.  No such luck.I discover I can get to menus by using konqueror and using the menu to go to console.  I do the MCC command and try to change the video but no luck without a reboot.  I try a number of options including XFdrake.  Again, a reboot is required.Going into the MCC is the first time I realized I had a BIG problem  When I would type su it would show up on the screen as s4.  The function keys are overlaid on the uiopjkl;m,./ keys.  That means to use those keys I discovered I needed to hold down the function key when I would press them.  I figured out how to su and put in my password and access the different menus.  I have not found anything that restores the keys to the proper sequence.  Since it is at KDE that everything switches that leads me to believe I might need to try a gnome product.Any brilliant ideas out there?  Not that I expect any.  I have had the tablet for 48 hours and tried to go into PCLos twice with the same results - using two different CDs - one a fresh burn that checked out.  I have some more live CDs to try but am about to the point of saying this computer might stay without Linux.  To think I came within a hair's breath of buying a mac instead of this one.  :teehee:  Then again, daughter is drooling over this one without even seeing it.  :w00t:  I am not totally defeated yet but definitely close on my first distro to try.
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#2 OFFLINE   burninbush

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Posted 13 January 2006 - 11:21 PM

I have some more live CDs to try but am about to the point of saying this computer might stay without Linux. +++++++++++++Suggest that you try the last Kanotix before giving up.  That would be the 2005-04 release, came out on 12/31 as I recall it.   It has worked the best initially on two laptops here.

#3 OFFLINE   Bruno

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 05:29 AM

Hi JuliaWith the PCLos CD, did you try the cheatcode "livecd xauto" ( extreme video and monitor detection ) ?And if even that does not work, choose at the login screen: "session type" "failsafe" . . . and type "init 3" . . . then log in as root, do the XFdrake thing, then log out as root and log in as "guest" and give the command "startx startkde" . . . . . . . . . that should do the trick :DB) Bruno

#4 OFFLINE   teacher

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 08:23 AM

View PostBruno, on Jan 14 2006, 04:29 AM, said:

Hi JuliaWith the PCLos CD, did you try the cheatcode "livecd xauto" ( extreme video and monitor detection ) ?And if even that does not work, choose at the login screen: "session type" "failsafe" . . . and type "init 3" . . . then log in as root, do the XFdrake thing, then log out as root and log in as "guest" and give the command "startx startkde" . . . . . . . . . that should do the trick :teehee:  :w00t: Bruno
That's on my list of things to try but basically I think I need to look at keyboard configuration first.  Will try the mcc from the init3 level first possibly to see if I can fix that.  Today's project is to play with it but last night we discussed giving this to daughter next month.  Won't she be surprised....
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#5 OFFLINE   teacher

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 05:26 PM

Well, what can I say.  I have spent the last two hours and 24 minutes trying to configure this puppy.  The screen was the easy part.  Boot codes and a bit worked easily.  The keyboard is another issue.  Do you want to know how many keyboards there are to choose from?  Let's just say it takes a long time to go and switch to each one and test it. The end result?  I guess I need to figure out how to build my own keyboard layout because I am going nowhere with what comes with KDE and PClos as well as googling for help.  Might I say it is looking more and more like daughter will inherit the tablet of her dreams?  :thumbsup:  :hysterical:
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#6 OFFLINE   Bruno

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 06:08 PM

Would this hardware be very recent ?? I mean did the Linux developers have had the time to make support for the components used in this particular laptop ?? Did you check the HW databases before buying ??Well, in any case your daughter will will be delighted with this miracle of technology :DB) Bruno

#7 OFFLINE   teacher

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 06:13 PM

View PostBruno, on Jan 14 2006, 05:08 PM, said:

Would this hardware be very recent ?? I mean did the Linux developers have had the time to make support for the components used in this particular laptop ?? Did you check the HW databases before buying ??Well, in any case your daughter will will be delighted with this miracle of technology :P  :D Bruno
Come on Bruno, who are you talking to?  :D  I checked out the tablet portion.  It is recognized in Linux as a wacom tablet which Tex worked on last month.  Of course it is new technology.  Why would I wait for Linux to develop before buying?  Do I do things that way?  :hysterical:  :hmm: I never figured the keyboard would be a stopping point.  After all, a keyboard is a keyboard is a keyboard.  I looked at things like video, tablet and wireless.  After all, who would have thought this would be the problem.  :P  I was very particular about the wireless.  I walked past cheaper laptops/tablets without a second thought based on chipsets.  If my notebook comes back to me it looks like this baby is on its way South - to daughter of course.  :thumbsup:
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#8 OFFLINE   zlim

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Posted 14 January 2006 - 09:59 PM

Julia, have you plugged in an external keyboard? I know it defeats the purpose of having a tablet PC but just maybe the external will work so that you can figure out what you need to do to get the tablet keyboard functioning as a normal keyboard.
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#9 OFFLINE   teacher

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Posted 15 January 2006 - 08:59 AM

Nice idea Liz.  I have spare keyboards but I can get around quite easily.  I just have to keep remembering to use the function key in conjunction with most of the right hand keys.  :angry:  I just read where Tex says that the tablet won't be enabled until the next version of xorg so I am leaning more and more towards making my daughter happy.  I think I have decided that if my notebook comes back to me on Tuesday then this goes to daughter in two weeks when hubby goes down to run a half marathon.
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#10 OFFLINE   teacher

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Posted 15 January 2006 - 04:05 PM

PCLos is installed and fixed. I found out frm ikerekes that laptops and tablets frequently have a problem with numlock and by going into services and stopping it you get normal functionality back.  Thanks Ivan!Perhaps tomorrow I will tackle my ipw2200 wireless connection.  ;)
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#11 OFFLINE   zlim

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Posted 15 January 2006 - 11:56 PM

;)  I love happy endings! Gotta have your PCLos and it's great that you get to keep the latest toy. LOL.
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#12 OFFLINE   Bruno

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 04:44 AM

Great call ikerekes !!!   . . . Congrats Julia !!!We will have to remember this one for the next time someone has this problem.:) Bruno

#13 OFFLINE   teacher

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Posted 22 January 2006 - 06:29 PM

Happy dance time.  :hysterical:  :thumbsup:  B)  :hysterical:   Why you ask?  I now have wireless as well as wired connections.  Everything is now working on my tablet.  Guess I will have to keep it!  Off to do my updates! :hysterical:  
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#14 OFFLINE   Bruno

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Posted 22 January 2006 - 06:44 PM

Hey . . that is good news !!! . . . . ( and bad news for the daughter who sees a nice new gadjet fading away :thumbsup: )B) Bruno

#15 OFFLINE   Gary

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Posted 22 January 2006 - 06:48 PM

Get her one for Valentines day. :thumbsup:

#16 OFFLINE   teacher

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Posted 22 January 2006 - 07:14 PM

View PostGary, on Jan 22 2006, 06:48 PM, said:

Get her one for Valentines day. B)
  Since her computer has 4 GB of RAM, 4 SATA 100GB hard drives, a very expensive pci express graphics card  and a 3.04 Ghz processor as well as over $1000 worth of specialized software for animation and such, I think I will leave her with what she has.  When she got that, I told her it had to get her through college.  :hysterical:  The tablet would just be a playtoy.  I did quiz her as to whether or not she would really use it and the answer was basically "as a playtoy" so I guess she is going to have to do without.  :)On a side note, I had to remove WPA and go back to WEP to access my wireless connection.  I tried to go in and make the change and I could not get anywhere until I tried the old default "admin, admin".  When it came up as linksys I realized I was in the neighbor's wireless instead of mine.  I decided I had best not change any settings on that one.  :hysterical:  It might help to keep a happy neighbor, particularly since my russian is non-existant so I doubt I could explain what I had done.  :thumbsup:  :hysterical:
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