Prior query: HP a350n
Tue, 20 Jan 2004 15:39:36 -0800 (PST)


Many thanks for your reply!  Interestingly, someone found one of my
queries via Google, & is also looking to Linusize an a350n; I'll be
passing on to him any progress I make myself.

Based on your responses, I dug a bit further.  I _think_ I've hit a
serious vein of paydirt:
It seems to me that kveton's site addresses many of the issues you had
found (most particularly with the S-ATA disk & e100 net), included below
for reference (or is it mere "noise" at this point?  If so, apologies!).

Also relevant:

One question... how much of a pain is that "poxy winmodem" likely to be?

- Steve S.

> Composite of several retailer pages:
>    P4 2.8GHz, 512MB PC2700 DDR SDRAM
>    NVIDIA GeForce4 MX 440AGP card w/video out
>    2 Firewire / IEEE 1394 ports
>    DVD+RW/CD-RW combo drive (presumably ATAPI)
>    6 USB ports
>    front-access 7-in-1 media card reader (presumably a USB device)
>    160GB ATA hard drive
>    100BT ethernet interface
>    V.92 faxmodem
>    some Realtek (?) "AC97" sound chipset in the motherboard
>    Optical Mouse
>    HP "multimedia" keyboard
> Motherboard chipset:  i865G "Springdale" northbridge w/ i82801EB
> "ICH5" southbridge (S-ATA, sound).
>   Onboard video apparently requires a recent 2.4.x kernel and agpgart
>   driver.
>   For onboard video, desirable to set BIOS parameter "Video Buffer" to
>   8MB.
>   Onboard video uses i830 driver (no big surprise).
>   Serial ATA/RAID, gigabit ethernet
>   Ethernet chipset is possibly i82547EI.
>   Sound chipset is possibly i82801EB + Analog Devices AD1980 (?).
>   (I thought it was Realtek?  or was it Intel ICH5?)
>    Similar system under different branding.
>    Apparently, at least some similar systems require (required?) a
>    kernel patch to support the ICH5 audio (as of kernel 2.4.21).
> The biggest problem that suggests itself immediately is the SATA
> chipset (whatever it is).  Some Web pages suggest that, if you find
> that your Linux installer lacks the driver, go into the BIOS and
> select "compatible mode", which makes the drive array operate in
> regular PATA mode.  Later, you can acquire some hopped-up kernel and
> then re-enable SATA at that time.
> The alternative is to build a custom installer image with a 2.4.23 or
> later kernel and the "libata" patch for SATA support, and that's a
> whole lot more trouble.
> The ethernet chipset is going to require some stripe of eepro100 or
> e100 driver.  If we're reasonably lucky, some installer's bf2.4
> installer kernel will have a recent-enough one of those drivers.  The
> e100 might not be there, in which case you'd have to do some little
> dance with floppies to provide it (if eepro100 doesn't work).
> Then, there's your GeForce4; XFree86 support for that video chipset
> was introduced only in the XFree86 4.3.0 release.  Official Debian
> packages for that exist (on i386 arch) currently only in the
> "experimental" branch -- not sarge ("testing"), and not even sid
> ("unstable").  Or you can start out using one of the _cousins_ of
> Debian that include 4.3.0, such as Morphix.
> Large array of possible installers for Debian:
> "Installers" on
> A few of the other hardware details (such as your faxmodem, which I
> suspect will turn out to be some sort of poxy winmodem) remain unclear
> -- but less immediately vital.  I'd suspect that it's do-able.

Again, many, MANY thanks!
- S.