Installing Debian Etch on laptop ASUS A6VA - Q021H [last update 20/07/2008]


Pasquale Campitiello



Display resolution

Kernel updating

CPU Frequency Scaling MonitorJava installation

Headphones and microphone


Unresolved issues

Some configuration files


WiFi Politecnico Milano


>>> Technical details


Processor: Intel® Pentium® M Processor, MPM 740 1.73G, 2MB On-Die L2 Cache
Chipset: Mobile Intel 915 PM Express Chipset
Memory: DDR II -533 ; 2x DDR soDIMM Socket ; (max 2048MB)
Display: 15.4" (WXGA) (Color Shine), 1280x800
Video: ATI Mobility Radeon X700 PCI-Express, 128 MB DDR
Hard disk: 80 GB 4200 rpm
Optical Drive: DVD-Dual D/L, Super Multi Dual Layer
Networking: Wireless 802.11BG, Gigabit LAN, 56k V.92, Bluetooth
Audio: Azalia compliant audio chip, 3D effects & full duplex

Other: Adapter AC, 1.3 Milioni di Pixel Videocamera Integrated,

1 x EPP/ECP Parallel port/D-sub 25-pin, Audio-out jack, Mic-in jack, Line-in Jack, RJ11 Modem jack, RJ45 LAN Jack, 4 USB 2.0, 1 IEEE 1394, TV Out (S-Video), PCMCIA Tipo II, 2.1 compatibile, IrDA, VGA out, Lettore schede dimemoria (MMC/SD, Memory Stick, MS-Pro)

Battery: 8 cells 4400 mAh, 4 hours
Size: 354x284x35.2 mm, 2.95 Kg


Hardware Components
Status under Linux
Intel® Pentium® M Processor, MPM 740 1.73G, 2MB On-Die L2 Cache Works No special procedure required during installation.
15.4" (WXGA) (Color Shine), 1280x800 Works Select Generic LCD Display in Installer
ATI Mobility Radeon X700 PCI-Express, 128 MB DDR Works Not recognized correctly. Problem solved.
DDR II -533 ; 2x DDR soDIMM Socket ; (max 2048MB) Works No special procedure required during installation
80 GB 4200 rpm Works No special procedure required during installation
Wireless 802.11BG, Gigabit LAN, 56k V.92, Bluetooth Works No special procedure required during installation
Internal 56k Modem In progess In progress
DVD-Dual D/L, Super Multi Dual Layer Works No special procedure required during installation
Battery: 8 cells 4400 mAh, 4 hours Works No special procedure required during installation
Azalia compliant audio chip, 3D effects & full duplex Works No special procedure required during installation. Some problems with headphones.
Bison WebCam Doesn't work No driver.


>>> Display resolution


After installation the first problem is about the video card ATI Mobility Radeon X700 that is not recognized correctly and the display remain black.


I solved the problem in single user mode:

1) reboot the system in sigle user mode;

2) write the command:


 dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg


and reconfigure the graphical server choosing VESA drivers (then I choose the default display resolutions and also 1280x800 and 1280x768).


Now the system started correctly up to desktop. But yet there is another problem: the maximum display resolution is fixed to 1024x768 and this is not very good for visualization.


Then I follow this instructions:

1) I opened a root terminal and I made a security copy of xorg.conf:


 cp /etc/X11/xorg.conf /home/pasquale/


2) I modified xorg.conf according to (that is for Kubuntu 7.04, but it works the same, I rewrite my Section "Device" like this:

 Section "Device"
  Identifier "ATI Technologies, Inc. Radeon Mobility X700..."
  Driver "ati"
  BusID "PCI:3:0:0"
  Option "CTR2Position" "clone"
  Option "monitor layout" "LVDS, AUTO"


3) system restart and then also at the login I realized that resolution changed! When Debian get the desktop, clicking on

Desktop -> Preferences -> Display resolution I can choose up to 1280x800, and everything is visualized correctly.

>>> Kernel updating


The system was not very rapid, so I decided to update the kernel.

I downloaded linux-image-2.6-486_2.6.18+6etch3_i386.deb from then in a root terminal I give the command:


 dpkg -i kernel-image-2.6.8-nomepersonalizzato-386_1.Custom_i386.deb


(the GRUB boot loader is rewritten).

Now the all system is quite fast.


>>> CPU Frequency Scaling Monitor

I add the applet CPU Frequency Scaling Monitor to the menu panel (right click on the panel -> Add to panel... -> CPU Frequency Scaling Monitor), then in a root terminal I give the command:


 dpkg-reconfigure gnome-applets


Now with a simple click on the applet you can choose everything is better for you CPU (modules and frequences).


>>> Java installation


First of all, in a root terminal I installed fakeroot and java-package:


 apt-get install fakeroot java-package


Now it's necessary to download the official JRE (Java Runtime Environment) version from the link: java download (see Linux self-extracting). When the dowload is complete, move in the directory where is the file (.bin) and in a user terminal (not root!) give:


 fakeroot make-jpkg jre-XXX-linux-XXX.bin


Accept the license writing yes. Now the new package .deb is ready to be installed. Give this command:


 dpkg -i sun-j2reXXX.deb


When this process is completed a new versione of Java is installed. To verify the installation give the command java -version:


 ~$ java -version
 java version "1.6.0_05"
 Java(TM) SE Runtime Environment (build 1.6.0_05-b13)
 Java HotSpot(TM) Server VM (build 10.0-b19, mixed mode)


After this I had some problem with the compiler javac that were non-existent. I solved the problem with these commands:


 update-alternatives --install "/usr/bin/java" "java" "/usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/java" 1
 update-alternatives --set java /usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/java

 update-alternatives --install "/usr/bin/javac" "javac" "/usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/javac" 1
 update-alternatives --set javac /usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/javac

 update-alternatives --install "/usr/bin/javaws" "javaws" "/usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/javaws" 1
 update-alternatives --set javaws /usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/javaws

 update-alternatives --install "/usr/bin/apt" "apt" "/usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/apt" 1
 update-alternatives --set apt /usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/apt

 update-alternatives --install "/usr/bin/jar" "jar" "/usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/jar" 1
 update-alternatives --set jar /usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/jar

 update-alternatives --install "/usr/bin/javadoc" "javadoc" "/usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/javadoc" 1
 update-alternatives --set javadoc /usr/lib/j2re1.6-sun/bin/javadoc


>>> Headphones and microphone


To enable headphones I modified the file /etc/modprobe.d/alsabase:


 gedit /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base


I add at the end of the file the following line:


 options snd-hda-intel model=z71v position_fix=1

Then I restarted the system and the headphones works, also when I plug out headphones when the music is on.

For the microphone, when I clicked Applications -> Audio & Video -> Sounds recording I got an error. This message suggested me to go in "Multimedia settings". I clicked Desktop -> Preferences -> Multimedia system selector and I set "OSS - Open Sound System" in Predefined input plugin. Now the recording with microphone is enable correctly.


>>> Unresolved issues


Bison Webcam.


>>> Some configuration files




# wpa_supplicant.conf


# auth_alg=OPEN
# phase2="auth=MSCHAPV2"
# fine wpa_supplicant.conf





 # /etc/X11/xorg.conf (xorg X Window System server configuration file)
# This file was generated by dexconf, the Debian X Configuration tool, using
# values from the debconf database.
# Edit this file with caution, and see the /etc/X11/xorg.conf manual page.
# (Type "man /etc/X11/xorg.conf" at the shell prompt.)
# This file is automatically updated on xserver-xorg package upgrades *only*
# if it has not been modified since the last upgrade of the xserver-xorg
# package.
# If you have edited this file but would like it to be automatically updated
# again, run the following command:
# sudo dpkg-reconfigure -phigh xserver-xorg

Section "Files"
 FontPath "/usr/share/fonts/X11/misc"
 FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/misc"
 FontPath "/usr/share/fonts/X11/cyrillic"
 FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/cyrillic"
 FontPath "/usr/share/fonts/X11/100dpi/:unscaled"
 FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/100dpi/:unscaled"
 FontPath "/usr/share/fonts/X11/75dpi/:unscaled"
 FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi/:unscaled"
 FontPath "/usr/share/fonts/X11/Type1"
 FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/Type1"
 FontPath "/usr/share/fonts/X11/100dpi"
 FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/100dpi"
 FontPath "/usr/share/fonts/X11/75dpi"
 FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi"
 # path to defoma fonts
 FontPath "/var/lib/defoma/x-ttcidfont-conf.d/dirs/TrueType"

Section "Module"
 Load "bitmap"
 Load "dbe"
 Load "ddc"
 Load "dri"
 Load "extmod"
 Load "freetype"
 Load "glx"
 Load "int10"
 Load "vbe"

Section "InputDevice"
 Identifier "Generic Keyboard"
 Driver "kbd"
 Option "CoreKeyboard"
 Option "XkbRules" "xorg"
 Option "XkbModel" "pc105"
 Option "XkbLayout" "it"

Section "InputDevice"
 Identifier "Configured Mouse"
 Driver "mouse"
 Option "CorePointer"
 Option "Device" "/dev/input/mice"
 Option "Protocol" "ImPS/2"
 Option "Emulate3Buttons" "true"

Section "InputDevice"
 Identifier "Synaptics Touchpad"
 Driver "synaptics"
 Option "SendCoreEvents" "true"
 Option "Device" "/dev/psaux"
 Option "Protocol" "auto-dev"
 Option "HorizScrollDelta" "0"

#Section "Device"
# Identifier "ATI Technologies Inc Radeon Mobility X700 (PCIE)"
# Driver "vesa"
# BusID "PCI:3:0:0"

Section "Device"
 Identifier "ATI Technologies Inc Radeon Mobility X700 (PCIE)"
 Driver "ati"
 BusID "PCI:3:0:0"
 Option "CTR2Position" "clone"
 Option "monitor layout" "LVDS, AUTO"
 Option "XAANoOffscreenPixmaps" "true"
 Option "RenderAccel" "true"

Section "Monitor"
 Identifier "Generic Monitor"
 Option "DPMS"
 HorizSync 28-64
 VertRefresh 43-60

Section "Screen"
 Identifier "Default Screen"
 Device "ATI Technologies Inc Radeon Mobility X700 (PCIE)"
 Monitor "Generic Monitor"
 DefaultDepth 24
 SubSection "Display"
  Depth 1
  Modes "1280x960" "1280x854" "1280x800" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"
 SubSection "Display"
  Depth 4
  Modes "1280x960" "1280x854" "1280x800" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"
 SubSection "Display"
  Depth 8
  Modes "1280x960" "1280x854" "1280x800" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"
 SubSection "Display"
  Depth 15
  Modes "1280x960" "1280x854" "1280x800" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"
 SubSection "Display"
  Depth 16
  Modes "1280x960" "1280x854" "1280x800" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"
 SubSection "Display"
  Depth 24
  Modes "1280x960" "1280x854" "1280x800" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"

Section "ServerLayout"
 Identifier "Default Layout"
 Screen "Default Screen"
 InputDevice "Generic Keyboard"
 InputDevice "Configured Mouse"
 InputDevice "Synaptics Touchpad"
 Option "AIGLX" "true"

Section "DRI"
 Mode 0666

Section "Extensions"
 Option "Composite" "Enable"





# /etc/fstab: static file system information.
# <file system> <mount point> <type> <options> <dump> <pass>
proc /proc proc defaults 0 0
/dev/hda2 / ext3 defaults,errors=remount-ro 0 1
/dev/hda3 none swap sw 0 0
/dev/hdb /media/cdrom0 udf,iso9660 user,noauto 0 0
sysfs /sys sysfs defaults 0 0





# menu.lst - See: grub(8), info grub, update-grub(8)
# grub-install(8), grub-floppy(8),
# grub-md5-crypt, /usr/share/doc/grub
# and /usr/share/doc/grub-doc/.

## default num
# Set the default entry to the entry number NUM. Numbering starts from 0, and
# the entry number 0 is the default if the command is not used.
# You can specify 'saved' instead of a number. In this case, the default entry
# is the entry saved with the command 'savedefault'.
# WARNING: If you are using dmraid do not change this entry to 'saved' or your
# array will desync and will not let you boot your system.
default 0

## timeout sec
# Set a timeout, in SEC seconds, before automatically booting the default entry
# (normally the first entry defined).
timeout 8

# Pretty colours
color cyan/blue white/blue

## password ['--md5'] passwd
# If used in the first section of a menu file, disable all interactive editing
# control (menu entry editor and command-line) and entries protected by the
# command 'lock'
# e.g. password topsecret
# password --md5 $1$gLhU0/$aW78kHK1QfV3P2b2znUoe/
# password topsecret

# examples
# title Windows 95/98/NT/2000
# root (hd0,0)
# makeactive
# chainloader +1
# title Linux
# root (hd0,1)
# kernel /vmlinuz root=/dev/hda2 ro

# Put static boot stanzas before and/or after AUTOMAGIC KERNEL LIST

## lines between the AUTOMAGIC KERNELS LIST markers will be modified
## by the debian update-grub script except for the default options below

## DO NOT UNCOMMENT THEM, Just edit them to your needs

## ## Start Default Options ##
## default kernel options
## default kernel options for automagic boot options
## If you want special options for specific kernels use kopt_x_y_z
## where x.y.z is kernel version. Minor versions can be omitted.
## e.g. kopt=root=/dev/hda1 ro
## kopt_2_6_8=root=/dev/hdc1 ro
## kopt_2_6_8_2_686=root=/dev/hdc2 ro
# kopt=root=/dev/hda2 ro

## default grub root device
## e.g. groot=(hd0,0)
# groot=(hd0,1)

## should update-grub create alternative automagic boot options
## e.g. alternative=true
## alternative=false
# alternative=true

## should update-grub lock alternative automagic boot options
## e.g. lockalternative=true
## lockalternative=false
# lockalternative=false

## additional options to use with the default boot option, but not with the
## alternatives
## e.g. defoptions=vga=791 resume=/dev/hda5
# defoptions=

## should update-grub lock old automagic boot options
## e.g. lockold=false
## lockold=true
# lockold=false

## Xen hypervisor options to use with the default Xen boot option
# xenhopt=

## Xen Linux kernel options to use with the default Xen boot option
# xenkopt=console=tty0

## altoption boot targets option
## multiple altoptions lines are allowed
## e.g. altoptions=(extra menu suffix) extra boot options
## altoptions=(single-user) single
# altoptions=(single-user mode) single

## controls how many kernels should be put into the menu.lst
## only counts the first occurence of a kernel, not the
## alternative kernel options
## e.g. howmany=all
## howmany=7
# howmany=all

## should update-grub create memtest86 boot option
## e.g. memtest86=true
## memtest86=false
# memtest86=true

## should update-grub adjust the value of the default booted system
## can be true or false
# updatedefaultentry=false

# Splashimage

# e' il colore delle scritte (vedere sotto per capire come impostarlo)

foreground = ffffff

# background: e'il colore di sfondo dell'opzione selezionata

background = 111777


## ## End Default Options ##

# This entry automatically added by the Debian installer for a non-linux OS
# on /dev/hda1
title Windows NT/2000/XP
root (hd0,0)
chainloader +1

title Debian GNU/Linux, kernel 2.6.18-6-486
root (hd0,1)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.18-6-486 root=/dev/hda2 ro
initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.18-6-486

title Debian GNU/Linux, kernel 2.6.18-6-486 (single-user mode)
root (hd0,1)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.18-6-486 root=/dev/hda2 ro single
initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.18-6-486

# This entry automatically added by the Debian installer for an existing
# linux installation on /dev/hda4.
title Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron kernel 2.6.24-16
root (hd0,1)
kernel (hd0,3)/boot/vmlinuz-2.6.24-16-generic root=UUID=a8692860-4a32-4a27-bfec-fad67c1fb4a7 ro splash locale=it_IT
initrd (hd0,3)/boot/initrd.img-2.6.24-16-generic

# This entry automatically added by the Debian installer for an existing
# linux installation on /dev/hda4.
title Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron kernel 2.6.24-16 (single-user mode)
root (hd0,1)
kernel (hd0,3)/boot/vmlinuz-2.6.24-16-generic root=UUID=a8692860-4a32-4a27-bfec-fad67c1fb4a7 ro single
initrd (hd0,3)/boot/initrd.img-2.6.24-16-generic


# This is a divider, added to separate the menu items below from the Debian
# ones.
title Other operating systems:


>>> WiFi Politecnico Milano


I am a student of Politecnico di Milano (Italy). This is the procedure i did to connect my laptot to the university WiFi .


I created the file /etc/wpa_supplicant.conf (see Some configuration files). Then I set the connession with these commands:

 ifconfig eth2 up

 iwconfig eth2 essid internet

 wpa_supplicant -ieth2 -Dwext -c/etc/wpa_supplicant.conf -d


When the confirm message EAPOL: SUPP_PAE entering state AUTHENTICATED or somelse is displayed, in another terminal ask for IP with the command:

 dhclient eth2

Now to navigate, with the first terminal opened, in the browser you must set and port 8080 (for any protocol). In Firefox: Tools -> Options -> Network -> Settings -> Manual proxy configuration.

To configure the proxy also for usage of apt (by terminal) I created the file /etc/apt/apt.conf.d/30proxy:

Proxy "http://USER:PASSWORD@";


Proxy "ftp://USER:PASSWORD@";


And now apt-get install by terminal is correctly enabled to download and install.


See also


>>> Links

Debian links


Comunita' Italiana Utenti Debian - Debianizzati 2.0

Debian -- il Sistema Operativo Universale
Debian User Forums Index
Debian Wiki
Debianclan - Home Tutorials Tips System Administration Resources
Il sito italiano per gli utenti Debian -
Planet Debian
The Debian Universe

Linux links


a2 --- Appunti di informatica libera
Fedora Project
Free Linux eBooks
ITBazar, informatica 100% Feature
LinuxIT - where Linux users come for help
MinGW - Home
On-line Linux and Open Source Technology Books and How To Guides
PLUTO Project Free Software Project since 1992
The GNU Operating System
The Linux Documentation Project
The Linux Home Page at Linux Online
TuxFeed Home
ubuntu-it - Home
Welcome to - openSUSE