Publications

Linux on Laptop Report

Installing Debian GNU/Linux "Stretch" on a Compaq Presario CQ60

Introduction

HP are a US based global supplier of PC computers. Their Compaq Presario models are consuner laptops targetted at private citizens. Their CQ is a large format system with budget range CPU. I was given it second hand 2017, running Ubuntu, the factory installed Microsoft Windows Vista having been already removed.

General Hardware Specifications of CQ60

Hardware Components Status under Linux Notes
AMD Sempron SI-42 2.1 GHz Works No special procedure required during installation
15.6" 1336x768 TFT display Works No special procedure required during installation
Nvidia GeForce 8200M G Graphics Works No special procedure required during installation
4 GiB DDR2 RAM. RAM is shared between CPU and GPU Works No special procedure required during installation
Western Digital 150 GB 2.5" SATA Hard Drive Works No special procedure required during installation
Slimtype DVD-RAM DS8A2L-A Works No special procedure required during installation
Integrated Nvidia MCP77 Ethernet 10/100 Mbit Ethernet Works No special procedure required during installation
Qualcomm Atheros AR242x/AR542x Wireless Network Adapter Works Non-free driver required.
3x USB 2.0 ports Works No special procedure required during installation
DE-15/D-sub 15 VGA out Works No special procedure required during installation
HDMI video out Works No special procedure required during installation
Nvidia MCP72XE/MCP72P/MCP78U/MCP78S High Definition Audio Works No special procedure required during installation
HP 6-cell Li battery Works No special procedure required during installation
Chicony Electronics Co., Ltd. CNF7047 webcam Works No special procedure required during installation
"5-in-1" Card Reader Works No special procedure required during installation

This laptop is operating under Kernel version 4.9.0 AMD64

Basic Installation of Debian GNU/Linux "Stretch"

  • All my systems at home run Debian GNU/Linux, of which all but one run AMD64 versions. All of them run Debian stable, some test systems run testing or SID.
  • Debian GNU/Linux is freely available from a world wide set of mirrors, for multiple system architectures and in a range of installation media. If you have decent network available at the time of install it's best to use the simple network install CD image and install all other packages on demand over the network. If you are installing without a network, then the DVD images are more complete and allow for a near complete install. All Debian images are designed so that you only need the first disk in the set, to perform the basic install. The disk images can be used to create bootable CD or DVD, bootable USB keys, PXE boot images or bootable hard disks.
  • The CQ60 can boot from HD, DVD, or USB. I chose a standard Debian stable KDE DVD. Installation was standard, I then performed a routine upgrade to the most recent version of Debian stable. The install is a standard KDE desktop system, mostly with Debian defaults.
  • All hardware works perfectly with the vanilla Debian stable installation except the WiFi which requires a non-free kernel driver. After installation the non-free Nvidia driver was installed instead of the free/opensource driver.

Setting up Additional Features for Debian

  • Suspend to disk works, using the default Debian install though I only used it to test it.
  • Touch pad and pointing stic works with default X.org configuration, and up/down scroll option.
  • Hardware "Fn" buttons of back-light, sound volume etc work and integrate with KDE5 "out of the box".
  • The systrem has been upgraded to Debian 10 "Buster", and everything works as previously except the closed source Nvidia driver which caused a hard stop, and so the system is now running the open/free driver.

Unresolved Issues

On installation, none.

The closed source Nvidia graphics driver installed via Debian non-free repository does not work under Debian 10 "Buster", causing a hard stop when X starts. The opensource driver works perfectly.

Hardware Reports