Lenovo ThinkPad Ege E325; installation, configuration

Hello all,

I am thinking about buying a new Lenovo Thinkpad Edge E325 laptop/netbook - it features the new AMD E-325 CPU with a AMD Radeon HD 6310 (IGP) graphics chip and a 13" display (1366x768).

I have experience with SuSE Linux starting with version 6.0 but never installed Linux on a laptop and unfortunately didn’t used newer versions of openSUSE so I have some questions:

  1. Since the device is a netbook it doesn’t have an optical drive; unfortunately I didn’t find a How-To article on opensuse.org about how to install the distribution on a netbook. But: I have a 4GB USB flash drive as well as a 160GB USB external harddisk (maybe otherwise using the drive from my WinVista laptop or network storage within my private home WLAN?).
  2. When performing a netbook installation: do I have the same software choice as when installing from DVD? I would by the openSUSE boxed version from the openSUSE shop if I could use it somehow without buying an extra external optical drive.
  3. Is the new AMD E-325 CPU with this IGP Radeon HD 6310 and display resolution supported by openSUSE 11.4?
  4. Will the proprietary ATI graphics driver (and WLAN driver?) be installed by openSUSE or via YaSt Update?
  5. I read that kernel 2.6.37 is used with openSUSE. Is a newer kernel provided by YaSt Update?

OK, I think these would be the showstoppers. From what I read ThinkPads are pretty good supported, however, this one is a new model… :good:
Thanks for your help!

For the DVD, to put it on a 4GB USB stick is too small. You could try the liveCD of your desktop of choice on a 4 GB USB stick. Note that even today after a number of years, success stories with USB sticks is mixed. There are those who can do it reliably, there are those who can do it some times and not all the time, and there are those who can never master this.

IMHO the best thing is to spend the 30 euros or so and purchase an external USB CD/DVD read/write device.

If installing from a DVD iso image on an 8GB USB stick, yes the options should be the same. You may need to apply a special boot code so that the boot does not look for a CD/DVD drive that is not there (but instead looks for the USB device). Its much much easier to spend the 30 Euros and get the optical device.

This requires some research that I can’t do where I am now. One can type in openSUSE-11.4:

man radeon 
man radeonhd

to see what the open source driver support, and then go to the AMD linux driver page (put ‘amd linux graphic driver’ in google) to see what the AMD graphic driver supports. Typically the FBDEV and VESA drivers will support the AMD Radeon hardware.

You need to find out what Wireless hardware comes with that Thinkpad.

Yes and No. Nominally one gets only security patches to the 2.6.37 kernel. The ‘as packaged’ openSUSE-11.4 comes with the kernel. Updates bring it to the kernel. If one desparately needs the latest kernel, one can update to the 3.0.0-39 kernel with Tumbleweed-11.4.

Indeed. Don’t forget to look at:

If it were me, with any new laptop, I would double check that it does not have hybrid graphics (but it does not seem to be the case iwth the IGP Radeon HD 6310) ??

Yes, it seems best to buy an external optical drive.

I have done now more research and learned that this “AMD Fusion” platform is probably today not just yet that good supported with the current Linux kernel. I decided to wait for the next openSUSE release (12.1) - Kernel 3.0 should support AMD Fusion well enough :slight_smile: