VectorLinux

Vectorbie Station => Vectorbie Questions => Topic started by: Deach on August 18, 2010, 05:31:40 pm

Title: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: Deach on August 18, 2010, 05:31:40 pm
OK I am bout ready to give up on this one.....I know Granny has one going (and I give her a standing ovation on this one) but I cannot get video on this thing.  It has that brookdale intel video.  Now here is the thing.  I put the VL KDE live disk in, it worked full screen and all...installed same, and after the reboot it was still there. Did another reboot and PUFF Black screen. I've tried VL light, and VL standard (which would be my preference) but at this point I'll take anything that will work.  (for the record I tried a couple other distros too and they did not work correctly either.   Can anyone tell me why the LIVE CD had video, and the first reboot, then NADDA?? I mean solid black after the verbose boot up stuff. 

For some reason there is no "linux gui/linux tui at the log in screen only "linux" which of course boots to VL Just lost on this one...Any help??

Thanks
Deach
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: bigpaws on August 18, 2010, 07:23:37 pm
The problem (I have run into this) is framebuffer. The changes in Xorg and the kernel
created a mess for the intel chipset.

Did you try Slackware 13.1?

You can load a live CD and change the /etc/inittab to run level 2

Then you should have at least a console to use. Then you could
try to get /var/log/Xorg.0.log and such.

I had an old laptop that had an S3 virge card. I could not get much performance out
of it. There was a live Cd for VL 4.0 and that worked. So I transfered xorg.conf to a
HDD install.

The problem that lies in that is there is no longer an xorg.conf (It can be used) since
everything is now using D-bus and HAL (Not something I agree with).

HTH

Bigpaws
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: Deach on August 18, 2010, 07:58:00 pm
Didn't try slack, but tried absolute (the latest release) I installed that and at least it would boot to an 800x600 screen.  I just don't understand how it works on the live CD and then not after the intstall.  I'm not quite done with it yet but man just been fighting and fighting this one.  Thanks. 
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: bigpaws on August 18, 2010, 07:59:35 pm
My last big problem installing Linux took a year to solve.

I am very persistant.

Bigpaws
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: nightflier on August 19, 2010, 05:26:41 am
Probably, the LiveCD got lucky picking video driver, refresh and resolution. Then, during installation, it did another hardware detection and chose different settings.

You can get to command line from the boot prompt. Select the boot entry line and press the Tab button. This makes it editable. Add a space and a 2, then press enter. It should boot to runlevel 2 (text only). Log in as root.

Next you should run command "vliloconf" and re-install the boot loader. By default it will now add a "TUI" option.

Then run "vxconf" to set up video. Test your settings using "startx".
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: Deach on August 19, 2010, 05:29:36 am
I'll give  it a go and check back.  Thanks. 
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: GrannyGeek on August 19, 2010, 09:15:30 am
I wish I could help, as my Inspiron 1100 graphics are working decently. I don't recall doing anything special. I did put kernel 2.6.31.8 on the laptop in hopes of easier wireless networking. All I can say is I'm using the plain xorg driver called intel and I do have 24-bit 1024x768 resolution.

A bit of history on this laptop--
Originally my daughter-in-law was using it with Windows XP and it came with 256 megs of RAM and a 20-gig hard drive. When she got a new laptop, she gave this one to her son, who was around 10 at the time. He managed to slow it down to unusability. They live far away, but when they were here for a visit in 2009 they brought along the laptop in hopes I could restore its speed (which was never that great anyway, with just 256 megs of RAM for XP). I did get it going after I got the viruses and malware off of it but I suggested VectorLinux to prevent the inevitable re-infestation. I installed VL6 Standard and don't recall any problems with video. Grandson got a new laptop for Christmas, so they gave the old Dell to me.

The laptop has a quirky CD-RW/DVD-ROM combo drive. It has trouble seeing some home-burned CDs. In fact, I had to create a bootable flash drive for VL6 Standard ISO with unetbootin in order to install Standard. Anyway, at that time I had no problem with the video. When I got the laptop for myself, I replaced the 20-gig drive with a 128-gig drive I had removed from a dead laptop and I replaced the RAM with two 512-meg sticks. I installed VL6 Light, no Windows. I used Light rather than Standard because the computer would boot from the Light installation CD but it wouldn't boot from the Standard installation CD and I no longer had the bootable flash drive I had used the year before. I think there were some video problems upon installation but somehow I got it working, probably with the help of my friend Google.

I updated the kernel to 2.6.31.8 and don't recall losing video. I did run into some problems, though. I think I got black screens upon login but after a reboot or two or four I did get video. I've had some problems with X causing a black screen with no keyboard or mouse response, requiring a turnoff. These are unusual now. I occasionally lose video completely and get a black screen after I tell IceWM to shut down, but the computer is not locked up and it completes the operation. Once in IceWM, I have no problems with video although the glxgears scores are terrible, as you'd expect. When I turn on that computer later today, I'll look through xorg.conf to see if I made any changes. If you start in text mode (runlevel 2), you can edit xorg.conf and the changes will be reflected the next time you run startx. I haven't found the Xorg log files in /var/log to be helpful. When you're working in text mode, you can do quite a lot of experimenting without rebooting as long as you don't lose video completely. Control-Alt-Backspace usually worked to get me back to a console if X failed. Just be sure to save a copy of your original xorg.conf file under another name so that you can easily restore to default if your changes don't help.

We have another old laptop with intel video (different chip). I tried kernel 2.6.31.8 on it but the video vibrated and jumped around  badly with that kernel. I went back to 2.6.27.29 and video is okay again.

I do recall spending a lot of time on Google related to one of these video chips but I don't remember if it was on the Dell or the other laptop (Toshiba).

If you do manage to get the Inspiron video working *once*, it'll probably work again after some number of restarts. It seems to settle in once it runs a few times and the problems lessen. I'll get back to you after I inspect my xorg.conf on the Dell.
--GrannyGeek
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: GrannyGeek on August 19, 2010, 09:21:49 am
The problem (I have run into this) is framebuffer. The changes in Xorg and the kernel
created a mess for the intel chipset.

[snip]

The problem that lies in that is there is no longer an xorg.conf (It can be used) since
everything is now using D-bus and HAL (Not something I agree with).

I've never selected the option to go with no xorg.conf. I find that file extremely useful and can't see any good reason to do without it.
--GrannyGeek
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: bigpaws on August 19, 2010, 10:32:37 am
Quote
I've never selected the option to go with no xorg.conf.

This is not an option, at least not that I am aware of.

The settings are now done using /etc/hal/fdi/....

Bigpaws
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: retired1af on August 19, 2010, 11:18:09 am
I've always been given the option to choose whether I wish to run with or without xorg.conf during installation. As the notebook runs nicely without it, I've always selected "without".
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: bigpaws on August 19, 2010, 12:38:42 pm
Well I guess Iearned something new.

Bigpaws
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: Deach on August 19, 2010, 03:36:32 pm
ok I"m gonna get back after it again later.  Thank you so much for all the input.  I know darn good and well if it boots off a live CD I should be able to make it work while installed.  Yes this laptop is a dog, only 128 cache on the CPU but, I think it's good enough for the grand kids and some stuff...It was a freebie so, I wanna make it work. 

On a side note I just did an IBM thinkpad and when I updated the kernel it had that video jumping also, so as you I went back to the install kernel.  Thanks Granny (et al) for the help.  Granny I am appreciative of you taking the time to look at the config and see if it helps.  I just don't want to give up......and it's still too usable to put into the trash...

Again thanks
Deach
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: GrannyGeek on August 19, 2010, 07:44:54 pm
I'm using the Inspiron 1100 right now. Looking through xorg.conf reminded me that I did have a mammoth struggle getting video to work and I combed through Google looking for solutions.

I'm attaching a copy of my /etc/X11/xorg.conf (with a txt extension added). Two things I know I changed were in Section    "Device":
Option      "NoAccel"     "true"
Option      "DRI"         "false"

I found these suggestions in a Google link to something in the Ubuntu forums  (if I recall correctly). I don't know if the changes were what did it, but they certainly didn't hurt. The xorg file isn't horribly long, so a line-by-line comparison with yours may reveal something.

>> Yes this laptop is a dog, only 128 cache on the CPU but, I think it's good enough for the grand kids and some stuff. >>

Mine is no longer a dog! Upping the RAM to 1 gig made a tremendous difference. I'm luxuriating in 128 gigs of hard drive space. The laptop is working so well that I'm thinking of buying a new battery for it; the original battery is totally dead. I don't use the laptop away from home, so I'm trying to decide if the convenience of carrying the laptop to the kitchen table without the power brick is worth the cost of the battery. With VL6 Light the laptop performs very well--well enough that I have no desire for a newer machine as long as this one is functioning.

My 7-1/2-year-old Toshiba's screen stopped working; probably the backlight or the connector to the video system. I've hooked it up to an old 15" LCD monitor that wasn't doing anything and put it on a desk with USB keyboard and mouse and we're using it as a desktop. So I hope the Dell continues to work because if it dies, I'd have to replace it because I can't do without a laptop.

Be sure to let us know if you make any progress with your video.
--GrannyGeek
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: RonB on August 28, 2010, 08:57:43 am
Didn't try slack, but tried absolute (the latest release) I installed that and at least it would boot to an 800x600 screen.  I just don't understand how it works on the live CD and then not after the intstall.  I'm not quite done with it yet but man just been fighting and fighting this one.  Thanks. 

I wonder if the Live CD loads Vesa drivers.
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: Deach on August 28, 2010, 09:03:58 am
I'm still working (off and on) on the thing.  I can tell you it has "just peachy" video on the live CD.  I'm going to go back to square one on it when I have time, I just did a install for my son, and he's ecstatic to leave  windows and come to vector.  (it's also helped to renew our communications which was faltering some).  He said his old IBM is quicker than his buddies brand new laptop running 7.  Anyway I'll do more checking and report back soon.  Thanks everyone and I think "we'll" get it. 

Deach
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: RonB on August 28, 2010, 09:52:55 am
I'm still working (off and on) on the thing.  I can tell you it has "just peachy" video on the live CD.  I'm going to go back to square one on it when I have time, I just did a install for my son, and he's ecstatic to leave  windows and come to vector.  (it's also helped to renew our communications which was faltering some).  He said his old IBM is quicker than his buddies brand new laptop running 7.  Anyway I'll do more checking and report back soon.  Thanks everyone and I think "we'll" get it.

I wish Xorg would it get its issues with older Intel video chips solved. With desktops it's no big deal, you can buy an older nVidia or ATI card for next to nothing on eBay (which is what I've done with this GX270 because it had issues with Xorg under VectorLinux). But with laptops you're up a "dysentery tributary without sufficient means of locomotion." I think I basically did what Granny said to do with your Xorg configuration file to get the Intel chip (that I originally used on the GX270 with VectorLinux) to work better. But I never got the kind of performance that the chip is capable of performing. So finally I gave up and went to the nVidia card. On my laptop (Latitude D400) I use CentOS with an Intel graphic chip and it works great. But CentOS is a "trailing edge" distribution and you can still use the i810 Intel driver that used to work fine on all the Intel chips. Knowing what I know now, I wouldn't try to load VectorLinux on that laptop. (And, if worse comes to worse, you may consider installing CentOS on your Inspirion 1100 -- that would be much better then bricking it.)

Good luck.
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: GrannyGeek on August 28, 2010, 09:19:32 pm
I'm still working (off and on) on the thing.  I can tell you it has "just peachy" video on the live CD.

Which LiveCD is that? I made a bootable flash drive with VL6 Light Live on it so I could start my Dell VL6 Light for backups or other uses where I should work from another OS. I've had lots of trouble getting usable video. I can't get more than 640x480 resolution (native res is 1024x768). For my very limited purposes 640x480 is enough, but I sure  wouldn't want to be stuck at that for regular use.

Quote
He said his old IBM is quicker than his buddies brand new laptop running 7.

I'm constantly amazed at how well my old and slow Celeron desktop and Dell laptop run with VectorLinux. For what I do 98% of the time, they are speedy and responsive and I don't sit tapping my fingers waiting for something to happen.
--GrannyGeek
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: sledgehammer on August 28, 2010, 10:50:37 pm
Quote
I've always been given the option to choose whether I wish to run with or without xorg.conf during installation. As the notebook runs nicely without it, I've always selected "without".

Bigpaws, I didn't know that either.  I will look for it next time I do an install (I have done 7 so far this month, all desktops, all VL6 standard, so am taking some time off).  I recall that never_stop_learning fixed his toshiba laptop by installing the new vector kde.

Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: Deach on August 29, 2010, 10:12:32 pm
@Granny, the live CD that worked was the KDE live CD.  Honestly now that I think back I think it worked on the first boot to the installed OS also.  I"m going to reconviene on this soon, I've been tied up working on another inspiron right now saving files that were on it.  I can tell you that my inspiron 120 that has VL6 on it to me, simply flies.  Took a laptop that was basically "slow" and made it perfectly usable.  NO, it's not a newer dual laptop but, perfectly usable for most things. 

I'll have to see about the xorg thing.  I only know i've done several now all the same and with the exception of the 1100 they've "just all worked".  I will be doing another inspirion shortly when I save the files off the failing HD and install a new HD.  Although the specs are the same as my 120, the screen is much nicer. (read bigger) so That will become my main linux laptop. 

When (notice when and not if) I get the 1100 working I'll try to remember how I did it. 

Thanks for all the input,
Deach
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: Deach on August 30, 2010, 10:03:39 am
Well Granny, My Hat's off to you.  I cannot thank you enough.  Right now, I'm looking at a full video screen on the 1100. 

Quote
I'm attaching a copy of my /etc/X11/xorg.conf (with a txt extension added). Two things I know I changed were in Section    "Device":
Option      "NoAccel"     "true"
Option      "DRI"         "false"

I thank you thank you thank you!!!  I did NOT want to give up on this.  I don't know if it's gonna hold or not but, right now it looks awesome.  I've said since I came back here the Vector forums are the best of any......Again you have proven this. 

My heartfelt thanks,
Deach
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: GrannyGeek on August 30, 2010, 09:06:20 pm
That's great news! I was just sharing what seemed to work for me and the real  thanks should go to my friend Google.

Let us know if it keeps working. I do deal with quirks on my Inspiron 1100 not while X is running, but when X shuts down prior to shutting down the system and occasionally when I'm first starting. Frequently I get a black screen when X closes down, but the shutdown command proceeds and the shutdown is normal, though I can't see the messages. Once in a while I have problems at startup, usually at startx. Instead of seeing a graphical desktop, I get a black screen with unresponsive keyboard and mouse. A reboot fixes it. I've also had a black screen at login. The computer is not locked up, however. If I type my login name, password, and startx, IceWM starts and I see a  perfect graphical desktop. Let me know if you get any of these behaviors.

Congratulations on your success.
--GrannyGeek
Title: Re: Dell Inspiron 1100 VIDEO
Post by: Deach on August 30, 2010, 09:40:57 pm
Yes it doesn't seem to want to restart x after control/alt/backspace.....in fact about the only thing that is working is totally shutting it down and then turning it back on for right now. I've seen the black screen at log in and didn't try typing anything in, I'll try that.  I went with VL standard and now wish maybe I'd have went with light.  This was to go to a young man that is not able to have a laptop any other way and I think he watches stuff on youtube and this balks at that.  I do have a gig of ram in it.  (it's the 128K on cache I'm sure).  Anyway yes I'll keep testing and report back.  I am in fact on it as we speak (ok type).  Again sorry for shortcutting google but I thought (and apparently correctly) these forums were the place to come

Again thank you for sharing your research and time with me to fix this.  Honestly if it was not for youtube and one game site he goes to (yes linux would work it's "online") it is pretty impressive. 

Thanks a million and I'll keep reporting any quirks and such with it as they arise.

Deach