Friday, July 20, 2012

Windows 8 and the DV6-6023TX


So as usual the biggest problem with this laptop is the switchable graphics. I have found a method that has worked twice (to make sure it wasn't a fluke the first time!) to get the ATI/Intel mess working.

After you have installed Windows 8 grab this older driver bundle from HP. Using 7-Zip unzip the driver bundle. Open the device manager and find the Intel graphics adapter. Update the driver, using the driver in the folder SP53025\PACKAGES\DRIVERS\DISPLAY\W76A_INF. This will offer to install a "Mobile Intel(R) HD Graphics".

Once this is done run the Setup.exe file in the SP53025 folder to install the ATI Graphics support and do a normal install.

Congrats you are almost there!

Check in your device manager that both cards have ATI drivers dated 12/04/2011. If not, install the drivers for both cards from the device manager using the path above.

The first time you run the Catalyst control panel you will be prompted to install .Net, Windows will do this for you.

When you switch graphics cards sometimes Explorer and the Metro Start panel(?) are graphically corrupted. The fix is to restart Windows Explorer using the Task Manager.

Hopefully you are all done now and enjoying Windows 8 the way it should be on a Laptop.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Automatically set Linux backlight for day/night

This is a quick PHP script to set the screen back light level at Sunrise/Sunset, like most Sat-Nav devices do. It has two dependencies, xbacklight & php-cli, and is be run from crontab. I have it every 5 minutes. 

The only changes you need to make to the script are your Longitude and Latitude (Google Earth is handy for this) and timezone. Latitude/Longitude is positive for North and East and negative for South and West. The backlight levels are percentages, be careful using 0% as it is off for some laptops.

//Set your Longitude, Latitude, Timezone and backlight percentages here
$latitude = -35;
$longitude = 117.9;

// Get sunrise and Sunset 
$sunrise = date_sunrise(time(), SUNFUNCS_RET_TIMESTAMP, $latitude, $longitude, 90, $tzone);
$sunset = date_sunset(time(), SUNFUNCS_RET_TIMESTAMP, $latitude, $longitude, 90, $tzone);
night or daynight or daynight or day
//Set backlight level

if ($time > $sunset)
   system ("xbacklight -set $nightlight");
if ($time < $sunset && $time > $sunrise)
   system ("xbacklight -set $daylight");
if ($time < $sunrise)
   system ("xbacklight -set $nightlight");

Save the script to somewhere that suites you, mine is in /usr/local/bin/sunset.php .

And the crontab entry for every 5 minutes,

*/5 * * * * /usr/bin/php -q /usr/local/bin/sunset.php

That's it, the script will check every five minutes to see if it's night or day depending on sunrise/sunset and set the backlight accordingly.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

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

AMD has finally added support for the Radeon 6770M present in the DV6-60xx laptops. Getting the drivers to work has been a little tricky, but all in all not to hard. I am still running Xubuntu on my DV6 as I really don't want Unity or the eye candy of KDE. In saying that the guide should work on all Ubuntu variations. I can't lay claim to all the information in this post, but I will link to the source where appropriate.

Battery life when on the Intel card is still about the same, 3-4 hours. Running on the Radeon card (not gaming though) you get about 2 hours, which is still quite decent if you can't be bothered rebooting.

I am basing this guide on a vanilla install of Xubuntu 11.10 64bit. If you are running the 32bit version of Linux, you should consider running the 64bit version instead, but most of these instructions will work.

Firstly, as per my previous blog, 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"
from this article on Phoronix. (I have added the last two acpi functions to enable backlight control) and run update-grub and reboot.

These following instructions are copied from the Unofficial AMD Linux Community Wiki, and are used to download and build the AMD fglrx drivers.
In a terminal:

Download the required software to build the drivers:
sudo apt-get install build-essential cdbs fakeroot dh-make debhelper debconf libstdc++6 dkms libqtgui4 wget execstack libelfg0 dh-modaliases linux-headers-generic ia32-libs

Symlink /usr/lib to /usr/lib64:
sudo ln -svT lib /usr/lib64

Download the latest Catalyst Drivers, they should end up in the Downloads folder in your home directory,

Change to the directory the drivers downloaded to, and build the deb's:
cd ~/Downloads
sh --buildpkg
Install the drivers:
sudo dpkg -i fglrx*.deb

Setup the xorg.conf file:
sudo aticonfig --initial

Now for some house keeping. In the Settings menu will be two AMD Catalyst Control Centre options. The Administrative one needs a small tweak to get it to work.

Again in the terminal:
sudo nano /usr/share/fglrx/amdccclesu.desktop

The forth line down needs to be changed to
Exec=gksu amdcccle
save the file and exit nano.

The Administrative panel is used to switch to the Intel graphics card, and a reboot is required to complete the switch. You can check which card is in use by looking in the Information section of the Catalyst Control Center. Next to OpenGL Provider at the bottom you will have listed Tungsten Graphics Inc if you are on the Intel card and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. when you are using the Radeon.