Saturday, October 1, 2011

(X)Ubuntu 11.10 on the HP DV6-6023TX

Well what a fight it’s been getting Linux to run on this laptop! I gave up with 10.04 as the switchable graphics was a nightmare, leaving you with blank screens on most boots. (X)Ubuntu 11.10 boots fine every time but needs some tweaks to get the power usage to an acceptable level.

Out of the box. 43 watts
Editing /etc/default/grub (see below) 36 watts
Disabling the useless ATI card 13 watts !!

Power usage was taken from cat /proc/acpi/battery/BAT0/statewith the CPU practicly idle (less than 2%).

Edit /etc/default/grub to the following:
GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="quiet splash pcie_aspm=force i915.i915_enable_rc6=1 i915.i915_enable_fbc=1 i915.lvds_downclock=1 acpi_backlight=vendor acpi_osi=Linux"
from this article on Phoronix. (I have added the last two acpi functions to enable backlight control) and run update-grub.

To disable the ATI card edit /etc/rc.local and add the following line at the top: sudo echo OFF > /sys/kernel/debug/vgaswitcheroo/switch.

This makes the laptop usable for all except gaming, although the integrated Intel graphics is surprisingly powerful for what it is!

I will update when (if) I figure out the ATI graphics.

OK, so I didn't figure out the ATI graphics, but ATI did! You can find more information on setting up the ATI card here.

20 comments:

  1. It looks like there is an update that kills back light control. Hopefully it will be remedied soon.

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  2. And it is. You don't need the "acpi_backlight=vendor acpi_osi=Linux" anymore. The problem now is the lowest level is off, so when you wake the laptop from sleep etc you have to FN-F3 to get the light back up.

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  3. Hey Matt,
    Just a shoutout to thank you for your article. I used it to tweak my HP dv6-6190us, and my laptop is working awesomely. You can further tweak and enhance battery life by using powertop.

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  4. Thanks. Very useful. Does the HDMI works for you? I have a dv7-8140us.

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  5. Cheers,I just hot-plugged my TV and on Kubuntu it detected it straight away. I setup the TV to be second monitor and it worked perfectly.

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  6. Champion! Thankyou SO much for this. Just tweaked my HP Pavillion G6 with your instructions and my battery life is now double what it was.

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  7. Have you installed fgrlx or just using standard open source drivers shipped with ubuntu?

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  8. No, don't use FGLRX as it will kill vgaswitcheroo. You can't use the ATI card on the DV6-60xx series at the moment. I am still looking into this but not being a developer can't do anything actively.

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  9. I'd just like to thank you for this post - I can't tell you how long I played getting the useless ATI drivers to work - now I have no fan noise, brightness controls working and everything is running brilliantly. I am down to 9 watts after using powertop, with an unheard of battery life reported of 5 hours...

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  10. At first I was pretty happy with xfce and XUbuntu, but then the problems with the fonts was a showstopper. I just couldn't get the fonts to look as good as the more full featured distros. I'm going to use your tips with either ubuntu 11.10 or linux mint 12.

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  11. Just wanted to add my thanks for this my friend. Really appreciate it.

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  12. You are my hero of the day!

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  13. it really works but it's so buggy on my i7

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  14. Disable Ati card doesn't work for me,so i testing run sudo echo OFF > /sys/kernel/debug/vgaswitcheroo/switch. in terminal ,it give me permission denied..

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  15. sudo and echo don't play nice, try: sudo sh -c "echo 'OFF' >> /sys/kernel/debug/vgaswitcheroo/switch". That should work, otherwise there is a new post about getting switchable graphics working on this setup (http://help.stedman.net.au/2012/02/more-xubuntu-1110-on-hp-dv6-6023tx.html)

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  16. Thanks Matt.

    My laptop behaves much more civilised now :) I am disappointed in Ubuntu that they do not provide this workaround in their setup.

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  17. thank u so much sir ^^
    this helps me a lot :)

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  18. For some reason the vgaswitcheroo folder doesn't exist on my machine. Any ideas?

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  19. One of three things probably;

    1. Not configured in your kernel.
    2. You have FGLRX etc. installed.
    3. Not supported by your hardware.

    Can't help anymore without more information.

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