Thursday, December 1, 2011

Finally updated to 11.10

Sorry for the long delay! I'm glad to see that activity has been high.
I just updated to Ubuntu 11.10.

I've only been using it about a day and it seems that everything is actually working. I haven't tried HDMI out yet. VGA_Switcheroo is infact installed by default and usable. Sound, WIFI and the trackpad all work out of the box.
Battery life could be better. However the battery icon does in fact work!

I'm not a fan of the desktop though. I'm going to switch it up to the original Gnome desktop. I'll provide help on that later today.

What issues are y'all seeing with 11.10?

Saturday, September 3, 2011

I've been being lazy!

I'm amazed by all the folks out there looking for more help. To answer many of the questions that I've seen on here, the reason I've not addressed any of the issues with 11.04 is that I've not upgraded! After I got 10.10 working as I wanted I decided to wait it out a bit. Basically with working full time in the marine corps, a baby on the way in a matter of days and taking 9 hours worth of class my time has been pretty full.

With all that being said, here's what I can do for y'all. After I finish my homework today I'm going to pick up a new external hard drive and backup my current setup and do a fresh in stall of 11.04 and try to start addressing some of the issues.

With that as a goal we might want to look at starting up a wiki or similar page that allows for group editing so that those of you with fixes can post your results.

The LennyX iso is something I still have but have not used, for the same lack of time as above. The reason that there is no info about it is that shortly after Sudeep put up a site hosted by himself it got hacked. Same with his wiki site. For some reason despite my endorsement of his project on this blog he didn't get much in the way of support so I think he ran out of energy. I can't say if it is safe or not. Shouldn't be too hard to do a security audit on it though. The most simple answer would be to install it and boot into it with nothing going on ( network services, browser, etc) then open up a netstat -a and watch for strange connections. I will say that I don't think there was any reason not to trust it. It is a default Ubuntu distro, it just has the updated configurations for our drivers.

As of right now the issues that seem to be the most prevalent are:
1) Battery Life
2) HDMI Out Not working
3) New Catalyst driver needs some testing
4) Touchpad issues (?)

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Some news from one of the followers of this blog!

There doesn't appear to be much actual work done, however one of the members seems to be working towards a Envy optimized release.
Here's his post:

"Sudeep said... Announcing a linux distro optimized for the Envy 14.

I've been by the site just this morning and am excited by the idea. Such a niche distro might be difficult to maintain with such a small group of users. Be sure to stop by and take a look at the site, sign up and show some support. I will certainly be putting forth some effort from all the lessons learned in this blog.

Friday, March 4, 2011


Sorry I was gone for so long. My normal job had me fly out to Thailand for 30 days. I've spent the last 4 days catching back up on office paperwork, the work networks and computers and yet more paperwork.

I've not had any real breakthroughs on the laptop in the meantime. I've been impressed with the general setup I've got going. So tonight and tomorrow morning I'll start working on the external HDMI connection as per the request in the comments on my last post.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Sorry for the delay

I'm currently on an international trip for my normal job. I'm still slowly working on fixing some of these issues. I'll get some tutorials together in the near future. Keep checking back and requesting tutorials and I'll keep adding them to my todo list until I get them done.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Issues with 2.6.37rc2 Maverick (mainline PPA)

Going to have to put a little hold on the next tutorial. There are some other issues present in the upstream (mainline ppa) 2.6.37rc2 kernel for Ubuntu 10.10. After running the system and happily enjoying the graphics acceleration I rebooted to find that the system was having issues with acpi calls on bootup, causing a failed boot.

That being said, I intend to pull down the vanilla 2.6.37 stable source ( and build a kernel from that. If it works, I'll build a tutorial that will offer up how to build the kernel, at least the options required in the kernel, and then how to setup the hardware acceleration. Unless of course Canonical pushes an updated kernel before I can knock this out. Maybe I'll figure out how to run my own ppa and make it really easy for those uninterested in taking the time to build the kernel.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Working on refining the graphics setup

Hello all,
While the switchable graphics tutorial from a couple of days ago will get you up and running nicely on the integrated graphics, it will not get you anywhere with the hardware acceleration on your discrete card. At least not on the Envy 14 or any other machine that uses the 'Evergreen' series of ATI cards while running Ubuntu 10.10. The issue is that the newer open source driver that has the code to use the discrete graphics cards hardware acceleration isn't supported under the 2.6.35 kernel. Its possible to get the graphics card up and running with hardware acceleration under 2.6.37, but sadly doing so at this point will break the touchpad patch from earlier. I'm currently in work on a fix for this and will be quick to submit the change to the patch and also to put up a tutorial as soon as I can.

It should be noted that updating the kernel to one of the mainline kernels will make it very difficult for you to get support on the Ubuntu forums as you are moving away the standard system. Also while it may fix the graphics, its not uncommon to deal with feature regression even though you are updating the kernel. Its not hard or even impossible to boot off an earlier kernel that is still install on your system. In fact, this is why you are by default given the boot choices in Grub upon boot. Just in case a new version of the kernel breaks your system you are still able to back track.

Tutorial to come soon!

Also feel free to drop off a comment or an email if you have a particular feature or issue you'd like help setting up.