The IBM Thinkpad X31 is the perfect machine for my needs:
- small and light
- reasonably powerful and extensible
- (un-) dockable without hassle (using a port replicator)
- good linux driver support
- boots from USB devices
Debian is my favourite OS because it's free and flexible. To install Debian Lenny boot either from
- USB CD drive,
- USB stick or
I want to give a few hints for configuring Lenny on a X31.
I want my X31 to stay cool so I need the fan to run more often than the EC (embedded controler) indicates. Fortunately with a modern Linux kernel you can control the fan speed by software.
I often change my workplace during suspended periods. At home I work with the port replicator and solely external human interface devices. On the road I work only with the internal display.
To resume with a
working X configuration I run
xrandr --auto. Also make sure you have
Option "IgnoreLidStatus" "off"
/etc/X11/xorg.conf's "Device" section, otherwise you get strange
behaviour with external screens bigger than XGA while the lid is closed.
Suspend to disk (S4)
I don't do old school shut downs overnight but instead send my X31 into ACPI S4 mode, usually refered to as suspend to disk (or hibernation).
Set up a sufficiently big swap partition (250 MiB is ok for my 1,5 GiB RAM)
uswsusp. To suspend simply run
Suspend to RAM (S3)
For short breaks (e.g. in order to catch the next train) I prefer a faster way of suspending, namely ACPI S3 mode, usually refered to as suspend to RAM (or standby).
Unfortunately this is not trivial on the X31. After fiddeling around for a long time I found a way to do it in a reliable way.
- Change to a virtual console, e.g. through
/bin/chvt 1or Ctrl-Alt-1.
/usr/sbin/s2ram(included in the above package
- After resuming change back to X with
/bin/chvt 7or Ctrl-Alt-7.
UPDATE Even the above is no reliable solution. For a real solution I set my hopes on Linux kernel 2.6.29 which includes promising changes.