linux on the samsung nc20: a status update

ยป lo-tech | 14 September 2009, 14:06 | ::

I‘m happy to learn that, with the release of the 2.6.31 kernel, all the hardware of our beloved Samsung NC20 is fully supported by free operating systems.
No further need for patches and obscure tricks for both 64 and 32 bit users: the latest kernel features support for all via-specific hardware like padlock, rng, sd/mmc and the front mic which was still giving headaches to some of us. Notable changes introduced in Linux-2.6.31 include the vanishing of the e_powersaver module: frequency scaling on all VIA processors is now performed via the standard ACPI driver and works just fine, detecting the correct frequencies of the Nano U2250, 800-1600Mhz.

At almost the same time VIA released a new version of their opensource graphic driver (direct download) which now compiles against xorg-1.6 and performs better than openchrome in 32-bit systems (reports are of 400fps in glxgears, against the 100 achieved by openchrome), but still doesn’t work on 64bit, where it systematically crashes xorg. That’s very smart of Via, marketing a 64bit capable platform and then releasing drivers that don’t support it. Moreover, the DRM module shipped along with the xorg driver is meant to compile only against certain kernels, the most recent of which is 2.6.27. That doesn’t need a comment, does it?

To sum up, the NC20 now works perfectly (meaning: every single piece of hardware works out of the box, you’ll lower your volume or screen brightness through function keys, the machine suspends and hibernates when needed, etc.) with 32-bit distributions sporting a kernel >=2.6.31. The same applies to 64-bit systems (where one must use openchrome as gfx driver) except for this bug that still prevents the system from coming up after suspension, so i guess one important feature is still missing for us 64ers.

My configs:


  1. che palle!

    — j    22. September 2009, 09:39    #