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Installing ubuntu 9.04 on Acer Aspire 7736G

Last updated: 7 November 2009

General Hardware Specifications of Acer Aspire 7736G:

Hardware Components

Status under Linux

Notes

Core 2 Duo Processor, 2.2 Ghz T6600, 800MHz FSB

Works

No special procedure required during installation.

17.3 HD+ LED LCD Display

Works

Select Generic LCD Display in Installer

NVIDIA Geforce G210M 512MB

Works

Download Linux driver, see howto

4096MB, SoDIMM, 2DIMMs

Works

No special procedure required during installation

500 GB SATA Hard Drive Western Digital

Works

No special procedure required during installation, see partition howto

BluRay / DVD Drive RW

Works

No special procedure required during installation

Integrated Gigabit Network Card

Works

No special procedure required during installation

Internal 56k ITU V.92 Modem

Unknown, not tested

I don't have a PSTN/PABX to test it.

Internal WPAN: Bluetooth

Works

No special procedure required during installation

Card reader

Works

No special procedure required during installation

Internal Intel Wireless Networking (Wi-Fi Certified)

Works

No special procedure required during installation

48W Lithium-Ion Battery

Works

No special procedure required during installation

Intel ACL88x HD audio

Works

No special procedure required if using Kernel 2.6.x.

This laptop is operating under Kernel version 2.6.28-16-generic (AMD64 version)

Basic Installation of Ubuntu 9.04:



Pre installation procedure, when new out of the box:

Don't start this laptop to complete it's Windows 7 pre-installation, change the bios boot order to CD drive.

Boot with PartedMagic to resize sda3 to say 50% of it's size. Create a new extended partition (sda4) and add 3 additional logic partitions sda5 about 40GB, sda6 8192MB swap and sda7 as a home partition. I made these as EXT3 (sda5,sda7). Now it's time to do some silly stuff, let Windows 7 complete it's installation, however it might complain about that sda3 has been corrupted, so be it let it pass testing it. Follow the M$ instructions until all updates and more annoyingly messages passed your screen. Reboot when done, however keep in mind that Windows wants to restart now and then.

Installing ubuntu:

Boot your cd and start installing in your language and regional settings. STOP at the disk setup and do this manually, we have already made the partitions we only assign the proper partitions to root, swap and home. Now installation of ubuntu is straight forward. But we need to alter the menu.lst later on. Reboot when needed and let updates pass. But do not upgrade to ubuntu 9.10. your now set but we need to setup the graphics driver manually since at this stage ubuntu doesn't recognize the GeForce G210M card.

Setting up NVIDIA:

First of all we need the latest driver from Nvidia's website, I got the “NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-190.42-pkg2.run” to download. Restart ubuntu in single user mode (recovery mode) proceed to root console with networking enabled. Set a password for root by typing passwd (essential for the trick for what we want to do next). We need the running kernel headers to be installed by typing apt-get install build-essential , now we need to get in runlevel 3, but first we have to stop gnome-display-manager to start, this can be done by temporally disable it by typing: chmod 600 /etc/init.d/gdm ,we go into runlevel 3 typing: telinit 3 , this were you need to logon as root again, since we now have a password for root we can go in. Go to the location were the Nvidia driver resides and run it by typing: sh ./N* Follow the instructions proposed by the installer make sure to enable 32bit modes also and let it update your xorg.conf. Before rebooting change gdm back to its original state by typing: chmod 755 /etc/init.d/gdm ,reboot your machine. Testing the performance with glxgears shows a nice average framerate of +2900 per second, playing sauerbraten turned up to be no hassle also.

Grub customizing:


Since I don't upgrade the kernel I made a static menu.list (note that the UUID's are not the same in your case, grayed out), the color red is an essential change for the alignment for usplash, since I put my own usplash in. During installation ubuntu made a weird grub setup showing 3 vista loaders so I customized the menu list to my needs.

code:

title Linux

uuid ce38db87-c597-45ec-9d5d-20005e0bd1ee

kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.28-16-generic root=UUID=ce38db87-c597-45ec-9d5d-20005e0bd1ee ro quiet splash vga=0x361

initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.28-16-generic

quiet

# this is the real M$ partition to load

title Microsoft Windows 7

rootnoverify (hd0,1)

savedefault

makeactive

chainloader +1

title Powerdown

halt

# this line acts as a separator, lines below will not be shown in grub until browsed over

title

root

title Ubuntu 9.04, kernel 2.6.28-16-generic (recovery mode)

uuid ce38db87-c597-45ec-9d5d-20005e0bd1ee

kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.28-16-generic root=UUID=ce38db87-c597-45ec-9d5d-20005e0bd1ee ro single

initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.28-16-generic

# this is your M$ recovery partition, keep in mind recovering W7 will lose your grub-mbr so re-installation of grub is needed after you restore M$

title Microsoft recovery (loader)

rootnoverify (hd0,0)

savedefault

makeactive

chainloader +1

title Ubuntu 9.04, memtest86+

uuid ce38db87-c597-45ec-9d5d-20005e0bd1ee

kernel /boot/memtest86+.bin

quiet



Setting up additional features for this Linux Distribution

Unresolved issues

Configuration Files