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Thread: laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

  1. #1

    Default laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

    Hi,

    I stumbled upon openSUSE 11 by accident as I was looking for another OS to replace my Windows XP as I have had enough of it just chomping up my hard drive space.

    I have a Compaq Presario v3000, specs:
    # AMD Turion 64 X2 Mobile TL-52 (1.60GHz/512KB)
    # 14.1" WXGA BrightView Widescreen (1280 x 800)
    # NVIDIA GeForce Go 6150
    # 512MB DDR2 SDRAM (2x256MB)*
    # 60 GB 5400 RPM Serial ATA Hard Drive
    # Super Multi 8X DVD+/-R/RW w/Double Layer Support
    # 802.11b/g WLAN
    # 12 Cell Lithium Ion Battery
    # 1-yr Standard Warranty
    # Dimensions: 13.15" (L) x 9.33" (W) x 1" (min H)/1.54" (max H)
    # Weight (6 cell): 5.5lb

    more details on this site I found on it:

    Compaq v3000z Review (pics, specs)

    I am new to Linux distros and have always been a Windows user, but have had enough now and want to change.

    I mainly use the laptop for surfing the net, university work, listening to music and am beginning to start video editting (sampler and training footage).

    I have tried the LIVE CD (GNOME) and I must say that I am loving the look of openSUSE 11. Only thing I couldn't get working was the wireless card.

    Really do want to make the move to this distro but am scared as I have never attempted something like this.

    The programs on Windows I am curious if SUSE can support or has a equivalent are:

    Zattoo- free tv player, allowing you to watch TV from your laptop.

    Adobe Premier Pro- for video capture and editting.

    iRiver music player-kinda like apple itunes, but from iriver.

    I am using openoffice at the moment and I know that it is included with the SUSE distro along with many other applications for music and video viewing. Also that I won't need any anti virus or firewalls for it.

    Any help or advice is greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

    openSUSE is a full desktop package so has most functionality either on the base install or by download. Or if all else fails many Windows programs can be run with wine Wine HQ

    Here The table of equivalents / replacements / analogs of Windows software in Linux. (Official site of the table) is a slightly out of date list of Linux/Windows equivalents.

    Some info. here How to migrate from Windows - openSUSE.

    Also, why not keep Windows and dual boot openSUSE until you are ready to get rid of it completly.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

    nucleuskore
    "The Future Is Open"
    http://www.neville.in
    http://www.linuxrocks.in

  4. #4

    Default Re: laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

    cheers guys.

    cant really do the dual boot as windows takes up loads of space and I only have a 60Gb hard drive,windows is stupid and takes up like 25-30 of it.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

    Quote Originally Posted by dope540 View Post
    cheers guys.

    cant really do the dual boot as windows takes up loads of space and I only have a 60Gb hard drive,windows is stupid and takes up like 25-30 of it.
    25-30 Gb is rather large for winXP. Are you certain you do not have a lot of data there? Surely that can be reduced in size without removing winXP.

    What you could do is either:
    a. purchase an external USB drive for storing your data, or
    b. purchase an additional internal IDE (PATA) or a SATA drive for installing your data (this requires some rather detailed hardware knowledge to setup). Also, openSUSE will easily run on an additional internal hard drive (while winXP nominally will not).

    Then move your data to the new drive, and reduce your WinXP from the massive 25-30 Gbytes. Immediately before installing openSUSE, be certain you do a defrag of the entire drive.

    Note there are advantages to keeping winXP:
    • you paid for it,
    • it gives you an Operating System independant check of any problem on hardware, helping to confirm whether it is a hardware or software problem (ie if both winXP and Linux have a problem, then it is likely hardware),
    • because of the Windows monopoly, with all one's friends, relatives, and work associates using Windows, every now and then one runs across software that one must try, that is not available for Linux.
    • it provides an easily accessible backup capability (with an independant OS) available if something should happen to one's Linux


    As an example, my 82-year old mother has an old Dell with a 60GByte hard drive. She has 3 boot partitions on that drive:
    • winME
    • winXP
    • openSUSE-10.2.

    I maintain her PC for her (remotely from a different continent), and there is no problem with space with 3 boot partitions on a 60GByte drive. But she has minimal data, and data (such as pictures and movies) can take up a lot of space.

    I plan to purchase an internal IDE (PATA) drive for her old Dell, and install it in Jan-2009, when I visit her next. I'll also likely update her openSUSE-10.2 to openSUSE-11.1 on her PC at that time.

    Out of curiousity, what wireless device do you have on your PC ?

  6. #6

    Default Re: laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

    Quote Originally Posted by oldcpu View Post
    25-30 Gb is rather large for winXP. Are you certain you do not have a lot of data there? Surely that can be reduced in size without removing winXP.

    What you could do is either:
    a. purchase an external USB drive for storing your data, or
    b. purchase an additional internal IDE (PATA) or a SATA drive for installing your data (this requires some rather detailed hardware knowledge to setup). Also, openSUSE will easily run on an additional internal hard drive (while winXP nominally will not).

    Then move your data to the new drive, and reduce your WinXP from the massive 25-30 Gbytes. Immediately before installing openSUSE, be certain you do a defrag of the entire drive.

    Note there are advantages to keeping winXP:
    • you paid for it,
    • it gives you an Operating System independant check of any problem on hardware, helping to confirm whether it is a hardware or software problem (ie if both winXP and Linux have a problem, then it is likely hardware),
    • because of the Windows monopoly, with all one's friends, relatives, and work associates using Windows, every now and then one runs across software that one must try, that is not available for Linux.
    • it provides an easily accessible backup capability (with an independant OS) available if something should happen to one's Linux


    As an example, my 82-year old mother has an old Dell with a 60GByte hard drive. She has 3 boot partitions on that drive:
    • winME
    • winXP
    • openSUSE-10.2.

    I maintain her PC for her (remotely from a different continent), and there is no problem with space with 3 boot partitions on a 60GByte drive. But she has minimal data, and data (such as pictures and movies) can take up a lot of space.

    I plan to purchase an internal IDE (PATA) drive for her old Dell, and install it in Jan-2009, when I visit her next. I'll also likely update her openSUSE-10.2 to openSUSE-11.1 on her PC at that time.

    Out of curiousity, what wireless device do you have on your PC ?
    yeah, 25-30 is rather large.

    the wireless card built in wiht teh laptop is a Broadcom 802.11a/b/g WLAN. there is also a manual wireless switch near the mouse pointer where i can manually choose to have it on or off.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

    Quote Originally Posted by dope540 View Post
    yeah, 25-30 is rather large.
    Can you not also remove many of the apps that are taking up so much space in WinXP, and then defrag afterward, significantly reducing the consumed space?

    Quote Originally Posted by dope540 View Post
    the wireless card built in wiht teh laptop is a Broadcom 802.11a/b/g WLAN. there is also a manual wireless switch near the mouse pointer where i can manually choose to have it on or off.
    Just saying "Broadcom 802.11a/b/g WLAN" is insufficient to ensure compatibility. There is more than one broadcom.

    Can you boot to a liveCD, then open a gnome-terminal / konsole in the liveCD, and type:
    su -c lspci
    and look for your broadcom device entry. Copy the specific part of that wlan entry here. (not the entire lspci).

    Sometimes, wireless devices are treated as a usb by the laptop, in which case you my need to try:
    lsusb
    and if "lsusb" is not found, then first install in the liveCD (it will go to ram) "usbutils" and then try:
    lsusb
    and again, post the wireless info.

    Its also possible your winXP gives more information than just "Broadcom 802.11a/b/g WLAN" ... i'm not a winXP user, so I can say that for certain.

  8. #8

    Default Re: laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

    Quote Originally Posted by oldcpu View Post
    Can you not also remove many of the apps that are taking up so much space in WinXP, and then defrag afterward, significantly reducing the consumed space?

    Just saying "Broadcom 802.11a/b/g WLAN" is insufficient to ensure compatibility. There is more than one broadcom.

    Can you boot to a liveCD, then open a gnome-terminal / konsole in the liveCD, and type:
    su -c lspci
    and look for your broadcom device entry. Copy the specific part of that wlan entry here. (not the entire lspci).

    Sometimes, wireless devices are treated as a usb by the laptop, in which case you my need to try:
    lsusb
    and if "lsusb" is not found, then first install in the liveCD (it will go to ram) "usbutils" and then try:
    lsusb
    and again, post the wireless info.

    Its also possible your winXP gives more information than just "Broadcom 802.11a/b/g WLAN" ... i'm not a winXP user, so I can say that for certain.
    sorry, i did think that just saying broadcom xxxxxxx wouldn't be of much info, but thats all i could find.

    thank you for the help and i am thinking of just jumping in the deep end later tonight or tomorrow and installing opensuse on it. i will back up all my data beforehand and if i can't get the wireless to work or any other problems, might go back to windows.

    i found the sticky in the 'wireless' section of this forum about how to get hte wireless to work, so have saved that and follow that when i get opsen suse on.

    i am thinking that it will work if i fully install it as opensuse 11 is the latest version and my laptop model has been out for quite a while, so it should be supported.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

    Quote Originally Posted by dope540 View Post
    sorry, i did think that just saying broadcom xxxxxxx wouldn't be of much info, but thats all i could find.
    I do not know much about wireless, ... but the little that I have read (mentioned on the forum and irc #suse) states that openSUSE-11.0 includes the broadcom "bcm43" driver by default (10.3 has bcm43xx). In both cases what is "supposed to work", is one is supposed to run 'install_bcm43xx_firmware' as root to install the firmware, and most broadcom chips are supposed to work fairly well.

    Having stated that, I note this post which claims the broadcom-bcm4328 does not work under openSUSE with the firmware (one must purportedly use the NDIS wrapper).
    Broadcom BCM4328 Wireless not working in openSUSE 11.0 | SUSE & openSUSE

    There is also an outdated openSUSE-10.2 guide:
    SDB:Broadcom (BCM4306) WLAN Installation under SUSE - openSUSE

    It never hurts with Linux to research one's hardware compatibility in great detail, before one leaps to do an installation.

    Reference installing openSUSE-11.0, I recommend you stay away from kde-4.0.4 and go with either Gnome or KDE-3.5.9.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: laptop compatibility with openSUSE 11

    Quote Originally Posted by oldcpu View Post
    Having stated that, I note this post which claims the broadcom-bcm4328 does not work under openSUSE with the firmware (one must purportedly use the NDIS wrapper).
    Broadcom BCM4328 Wireless not working in openSUSE 11.0 | SUSE & openSUSE
    And having typed the above, here is a different web site which claims the broadcom b43 firmware works under openSUSE-11.0 without the need for the ndiswrapper.
    Broadcom Wireless in OpenSUSE 11.0 | Blake Anthony Johnson

    Note (based on what I have read and seen reported, but not experienced myself) a firmware solution is typically preferable to a ndiswrapper solution, where at all possible.

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