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frugal technology, simple living and guerrilla large-appliance repair
Tue, 23 Apr 2013

Linux on the new HP Pavilion g6-2210us -- It's looking like Xfce until video catches up

Linux on new computers is always dicey. Or it has been for me.

Right now I have a Windows 8-running (aka Secure Boot-equipped) HP Pavilion g6-2210us, and its AMD video chip is not playing nicely with 3D-accelerated video in Linux.

So GNOME 3 is unusable, Ubuntu's Unity is marginal.

But Xfce, in all it's 2D glory, looks perfect.

The Fedora 19 Alpha ends in a kernel panic, so I can't participate in the Fedora Test Day for Radeon video.(I'm not sure if a kernel panic is useful.)

But both Fedora 18 with Xfce and Xubuntu 13.04 beta 2 (close enough to the release of Xubuntu 13.04 proper to call it that ...) are looking pretty good. I'm worried about sound, and Xubuntu seems to be handling things better in terms of Pulse Audio.

Audio levels in these Linux systems is lower than in Windows. That worries me.

I did see the Windows 8-equipped hard drive's partition layout in gParted, and I'm a bit worried by what looks like five partitions. Maybe this is a UEFI thing and I can easily dual-boot Fedora, Ubuntu or another Secure-Boot-friendly distro with Win 8, but nobody's coming out and saying anything other than "it didn't work for me."

So I'm skeptical about a dual-boot install actually working. I'll probably swap in a second hard drive in order to figure out the best Linux or BSD system for this particular laptop.