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Toshiba Tecra M5

Author(s)

Bill Giannikos (bill2 at giannikos.com.au) (Fedora Core 5)
Henry Collingridge (henry at collingridge.net) (openSuse 10.1)

Introduction

This is a guide to running Linux with the Toshiba Tecra M5 laptop, model PTM51A-030007. You can get this laptop working with Fedora Core 5, but it is not perfect. With openSuse 10.1, it works very well.

This guide is intended to provide you details on how well this laptop works with Linux and which modules you need to configure. For details on how to actually install and configure the required modules have a look at our guides section for distribution specific instructions.

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Specifications

NameToshiba Tecra M5
ProcessorIntel Core Duo T2500 - 2GHz
Screen14.1”
RAM1024MB
HDD100GB
Optical DriveDouble Layer DVD+-RW Drive
GraphicsnVIDIA Quadro
NetworkGigabit Ethernet, 802.11g Wireless and Bluetooth
Other3 x USB and Firewire

Linux Compatibility

DeviceFC5CommentsopenSuse 10.1Comments
ProcessorYesUse speedstep-centrino moduleYesNone
ScreenYesNoneYesNone
Optical DriveYesBurning not tested, but should workYesNone
GraphicsYes YesNone
SoundNo YesNone
EthernetYesNoneYesNone
WirelessYesUse ipw3945 moduleYesipw3945 module is install ed - ensure regulatory daemon is installed!
BluetoothNot TestedNoneNot TestedNone
56K ModemNot TestedNoneNot TestedNone
USBYesNoneYesNone
FirewireNot testedShould workNot testedNone
Card ReaderNot testedProbably wont workNot tested(Exploratory test negative)
PCMCIANot testedShould workYesOnly tested with a PCMCIA CF card reader

FC5 Notes

The open source nv module included with Fedora Core 5 does not support the nVidia Quadro chip. However you can get this working using the proprietary nvidia module. For a simpler install, you may like to use the ATrpms repository. Because of a bug in the kernel shipped with Fedora Core 5 you should upgrade to the latest kernel version before installing this driver.

Under FC5 the sound simply does not work, even with the latest ALSA modules. There is no output from the speakers at all.

openSuse 10.1 Notes

Obtain and build the NVidia driver from source. The machine will run using a stock generic driver, but until you install the NVidia driver, you will get some artifacts on the screen, some of which make use difficult.
Also there appears to be a problem that prevents the screen coming back to life after it has gone to sleep. I find that pulling out the power lead and plugging it back in fixes this.
It may be of interest to know that I have successfully installed the compiz and xgl packages, as well as xwinwrap. XGL works very well with the NVidia card even though the configuration complains that the card isn't in the supported hardware database.
I originally tried Fedora Core 5 but I had a few problems getting the wireless networking to work reliably. I also tried RHEL 4 and couldn't even get ethernet going. This was not a problem under openSuse 10.1 as both ethernet and wireless worked without any (significant) configuration. Note: Since writing this, I have found that under some circumstances, the wireless card is detected but does not start up. The problem here is that sometimes during installation, the ipw3945 regulatory daemon is not installed automatically. The solution is to use Yast to locate the package from the install media and install it.
Sound works with no adjustments necessary.

Summary

Apart from the sound problem under FC5 this laptop is fine. Hopefully the sound system will be fixed in later versions of ALSA.
Under openSuse 10.1, no problems have been discovered.


Discussion

tecraM5, 2009/11/18 17:47


I have Toshiba Tecra M5 and the SVGA is not working with Ubuntu 9.10. Any ideas to get it working?

shift, 2009/10/26 14:33

Ubuntu 9.10 seems to work out of the box on this laptop, apart from no audio via speakers, headphones work tho, which is a little strange.

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toshiba_tecra_m5.txt · Last modified: 2010/10/11 14:02 (external edit)
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