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Problems installing Linux on Sony Vaio Desktop


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#1 vikas

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Posted 13 February 2004 - 07:48 AM

I have a Sony Vaio Desktop Rs755, 2.0 P4, 512 MB RAM, 60 GB HD, ATI All-in-Wonder VE Video Card. I tried to install Mandrake 9.0 three times and I tried installing Redhat 9.0 twice, however each time the display does not show after going thru the initial boot process. After the display went out, the only thing I could do was press ctrl-alt-del to reboot the system. Does anyone have any idea what might be the problem? Is there some special configuration in Vaio computers that may prevent Linux from displaying properly or at all?

#2 Dapper Dan

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Posted 13 February 2004 - 08:22 AM

Sounds like your xf86config isn't set up right. sign in, become root:

su [enter]
password: yours [enter]

and (if still using Mdk) type:

XFdrake [enter]

If not Mdk, let me know. To begin with, set the screen to the lowest resolution, and try to find your monitor in the monitor section. If you can't find it, try using something as close as you can get. Play around with XFdrake and see if you can find something that will work. If this is just a waste of time and all different settings fail, run xf86config as root. It will give you a chance to set vertical and horizontal. Enter the values of your monitor. It may take several tries to get it right.
The problem could also be the video card. Did you download and install the ATI "drivers" for your card from their site and install them?
Your screen should be giving you some kind of error messages. Let us know what those are as it will go a long way in helping to figure out what the problem is. If all else fails, I would then e-mail Sony and ask them for advice on getting things to work with Linux.

#3 vikas

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Posted 13 February 2004 - 09:55 AM

Actually I can't even sign in. The display doesn't last long enough for me to reach that screen. Is there someway to possibly disable the graphics and just view everything in a shell so i can make these changes?

#4 Dapper Dan

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Posted 13 February 2004 - 10:39 AM

If the graphics don't show up, then you should be in a non X shell mode or runlevel 3. Does it ask for user ID and password?

#5 vikas

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Posted 13 February 2004 - 10:51 AM

I'm not sure if it actually does. The screen goes blank right after it does the "first boot" check. Then once the screen goes blank, I wait a little while and then try to put in my user name and password, but nothing really happens (the hard drive doesn't think). I also checked ATI's website to see if they have any updates for linux, but they don't have any that pertain to my video card, so either it's supposed to run properly or not run at all. I checked other sites and they say my video card should be compatible however.

#6 Dapper Dan

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Posted 13 February 2004 - 04:15 PM

So after you start boot, you see some lines of characters fly by for a while, and then you just get a blank screen with nothing? What does the last readable line say?

#7 jjcohen

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Posted 29 February 2004 - 09:05 PM

You need to boot into single user mode to get to a command line.

#8 Sherilyn01rox

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Posted 29 March 2004 - 08:57 PM

I have had almost exactly the same problem trying to install SuSE Linux 9.0 on a Sony Vaio desktop. The PC configuration
1.99 GHz AMD Athlon Processor
480 MB RAM
NVIDIA GeForce2 Integrated GPU display adapter
NEC MultiSync LCD1700V


I followed the Nvidia Installer HOWTO and downloaded and installed the graphics driver thought YaST Online Update. When I try to test the graphics setup, it blows out of the Xserver, and I get a text screen with a number of messages, some with errors, and a frozen computer. I can't even get out of it by hitting ctrl-alt-delete. I have to cut the power from the computer and start all over. When I let it reboot from the hard drive, after it tries to start the Xserver again, I get nothing - and a frozen computer. I cannot find a driver for this monitor, so I tried to pick the closest one, but it's nearly impossible to test different configurations because I have to reboot each time one of them doesn't work.

Is this a graphics driver problem or a monitor compatibility problem?

Thanks!

#9 jimf43

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Posted 29 March 2004 - 11:54 PM

Originally posted by Sherilyn01rox:
Quote:

NEC MultiSync LCD1700V

I cannot find a driver for this monitor, so I tried to pick the closest one, but it's nearly impossible to test different configurations because I have to reboot each time one of them doesn't work.

Is this a graphics driver problem or a monitor compatibility problem?

I strongly suspect this has to do with the LCD monitor.

This is where the Knoppix bootable CDs are indispensable tools. Use one to boot your computer. The detection is good enough so that it will probably configure the xserver for your LCD monitor and you can see what frequencies are required to run it correctly. It runs my laptop screen perfectly. You could also configure the monitor from mfg. specs which should be somewhere in the monitor documentation or on their website. You're looking
for horizontal and vertical frequencies.
-------
I just tried the Mepis bootable on the Presario laptop with a 15"lcd screen, and that also auto-configured just fine. I really like Mepis/Debian, so (of course) I recommend that you just install that 'instead of' Susi smile.

http://www.mepis.org/node/view/1462

[Edited by jimf43 on 2004-03-29 16:34:25]


#10 danleff

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Posted 30 March 2004 - 02:01 PM

jimf43 makes a good suggestion. If Mepis can do it, then it can be done.

A couple of issues, as I see them. ATI cards, especially in laptops are a problem, even the ati cards in desktops, I found that these cards are a real problem overall. ATI has drivers for these cards for use in linux, if you have the expertise to install them. In laptops, the monitor settings can also be an issue, dependent on what you told Mandrake it was during the install. During the install, did you choose to auto detect the monitor's settings, and did this result in a graphical interface during the test?

With LCD desktop monitors, you have to assure that you have the correct horiz. and vertical freq, as jimf43 stated. Also look in the users manual or online at the monitor's site for the ranges.

I keep forgeting the tool in Mandrake (once the install is finished) that you can invoke at the command prompt to configure the settings. DapperDan has this. This way you don't have to do it by hand at the command line. I think it was Xdrake.

I also have found that the monitor resolution should be 1024 X 768 to get a working monitor for most LCD monitors. Then you can go from there.

In terms of the "frozen" screen. Is it really frozen, or after the error messages, do you get a command prompt? If you are unsure, try typing on reboot and see if the system reboots, or gives you an error message about the command not being found, or needing to be root to use the command.




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