28 Feb 2011
Linux Mint 10 KDE on HP Envy 14 1100
Written by ilgrosso
28 Feb 2011
I come from four-in-a-row (very good) laptops made by mummy Apple: an iBook G3, a Powerbook G4, a MacBook Pro Core2Duo and another shining MacBook Pro, powered by dual-core i7 and SSD.
Because of some relevant changes in my work life (I'll write something about it in the near future), I had to return to my former company the latest laptop - with some regrets, however, it's a damn powerful machine.
I come from four-in-a-row (very good) laptops made by mummy
Pro Core2Duo and another shining
Pro, powered by dual-core i7 and SSD.
Because of some relevant changes in my work life (I'll write something about it
in the near future), I had to return to my former company the latest laptop -
with some regrets, however, it's a damn powerful machine.
Of course I could buy another MacBook Pro, maybe one of the
like some of my colleagues is doing right now, but it's been a few months now
that I have a growing uncomfortable feeling of Apple and MacOSX that resemble
every day to a cage, with their Apple Store, bells and whistles.
So I decided: back to the roots, back to Linux, possibly Debian, like when I
was younger and I met
Linux guy: I am expecting possibly more headaches, but I am free again, and
nothing else matters.
After some discovery throughout the whole Internet, I've found this
Envy 14 1100: solid, elegant and powerful; here it follows some hardware key
- Intel® Core™ i7-720QM 1.6 GHz (2.8 GHz with TurboBoost™)
- 4 GB DDR3 in a single slot; another slot free for additional 4 GB
- 500 GB (7200 rpm) SATA Hard disk
- ATI Mobility Radeon™ HD 5650, 1 GB dedicated memory
- LED 14,5'' display (1366 x 768)
- Most of information here could by applied with minor modifications to other
laptops of the HP Envy family
- Most of information here could by applied to one of *Ubuntu 10.10
- The Realtek network card has some issues with its deep sleep mode: be sure
post before starting any activity related to Linux installation; if it's too
late (you easily jumped over this point and are now scrolling back to find out
why you have that issue), please read
to remove the memory in order to reset the motherboard.
- The laptop comes with four primary partitions on disks, so there is no way
to make additional partitions for Linux unless you
the HP recovery partition.
- Other general information about installing and running Linux on a similar
hardware were found
Installing Linux Mint KDE 10
Ok, Linux Mint it's not Debian, it's an Ubuntu derivative, and Ubuntu is in
turn a Debian derivative. But Linux Mint has an ongoing pure
Debian edition that
will eventually replace the current one.
About the desktop environment, since 1.0 I've always preferred KDE over Gnome:
I've always felt it more organic and stable.
As first step, download the bootable DVD ISO image from
Linux Mint website,
then burn a DVD and keep it ready for re-partitioning your hard drive.
Then, make all necessary backups and preparations, as reported in this guide
GParted to resize Windows 7 partition, and keep a safe copy a
Finally, reboot your system with the Linux Mint KDE 10 DVD inserted (you have
to enter in the BIOS at poweron in order to select to boot from DVD drive) and
let everything roll on.
The installation procedure runs quite smoothly, with some relevant items:
- after resizing the Windows 7 partition (having removed the HP recovery as
specified above) make a logic partition in which some additional extended
partitions need to be created;
- right after first boot, install the proprietary drivers for display card
(ATI Radeon HD 5650) and wireless adapter (Broadcom BCM43224) by running
jockey-kde from command-line (or "Additional Drivers" from the menu);
- you might prefer to use an external USB mouse since the touchpad - a
Synaptic Clickpad with promising features in gestures - is almost unusable; the
situation improves significantly by applying
this advice: I
have now left click, two-finger scrolling and right click features (via
two-finger tap, right button is still not working);
- in order to profit from using an external monitor, you need a "HP mini
displayport to VGA" or "HP mini displayport to DVI" adapter (similar Apple
adapters won't work);
- suspension and hibernation work by default, but you need some tweaking in
order to be able to suspend/resume more than once: edit /etc/default/grub and
add "usbcore.autosuspend=-1" to GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX, then issue a "sudo
Finally, if you want to verify that your system is actually using its Intel
Core i7 at best of its power, just download
i7z from googlecode, compile and