Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Fedora 16+ on Eee PC T91MT

Hello world... again.

(Update 2)
As of today May 1, 2012 the latest Fedora 17 beta is working just fine. Well mostly. The backlight blinks out momentarily every once in a while. Basically all this below is out of date.

(Update 1)
First off, you probably don't want to do this. Seems it's not as stable as I thought it was and since it's using a staging driver, it taints the Kernel with a C. Still, something to look forward to when F17 is ready. 

A while back I bought an Eee PC T91MT. It's the laptop with the screen that can rotate around and run in a tablet mode with a two point multitouch screen. I thought I would make a cool remote for something someday. Last time I installed Fedora on it (back on 14) I had a few issues I never really resolved.

The touch screen didn't work under linux.
The video driver was unsupported and there was a proprietary driver but the system still had issues including never shutting down and never rebooting without manual button intervention.

That's changed! I installed the 32 bit Fedora 16 from the net install and all the defaults other than custom partitioning.

Setup finished and then... just console. X wouldn't start up the login screen. Darn. I switched to another VT and logged in as root and started digging. Fortunately it didn't take long.
startx revealed X didn't want to touch the video device because a kernel driver had control.
lsmod told me there was a poulsbo driver active. rmmod poulsbo and a startx later and X started working. And for bonus points, the touch screen is working. Tryout installing the "mypaint" app. The pressure sensitive drawing works.

This was not the solution though. Next I went and blacklisted poulsbo but it still loaded on startup. I could have tried making a new initrd image but there was another problem. Video was limited to 800x600 when it did work. Not worth the effort for less than working completely.

The bad news:
Lots of stuff still doesn't work. No 3D acceleration.
Just look at what Ubuntu has to say: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/HardwareSupportComponentsVideoCardsPoulsbo#PSB-GFX_driver