Guide to installing Red Hat Linux 6.0 - ThinkPad 600E

This document discusses the installation process, configuration settings, and compatibility issues as they pertain to running Red Hat Linux 6.0 on a ThinkPad 600E. As the Linux community continues to develop and enhance the support for laptop power management and built-in hardware devices, this document will be updated accordingly.

Last update: September 13th, 1999.

Target audience

This Guide is intended for ThinkPad users who have some Linux experience and are comfortable with the installation process for Red Hat Linux 6.0. We do not attempt to explain all facets of a standard Red Hat Linux installation; instead, we focus on providing information that is specific to the installation and configuration of Red Hat Linux 6.0 on the ThinkPad 600E. For details on the Red Hat Linux 6.0 installation process, please refer to the Installation Guide for Red Hat Linux 6.0.


Part I.

Part II. Part I. Overview

The sections in Part I provide an overview of installing and configuring Red Hat Linux 6.0 on the ThinkPad 600E. Also included is a list of links to other relevant sources of Linux information.

General discussion:

Red Hat Linux 6.0 and the ThinkPad 600E

Right out of the box, Red Hat Linux 6.0 contains drivers for many of the devices built into the ThinkPad 600E, including video, audio, serial, parallel, diskette, hard disk, CD-ROM, mouse, and Advanced Power Management (APM). With the exceptions of audio and APM support, these devices are ready for use immediately after installation without any additional configuration. This section discusses some of the Linux compatibility issues with the built-in devices.


The ThinkPad 600E uses a CS4239 chip for FM synthesis and 16-bit playback and record of waveform data. The driver included with Red Hat Linux that is most suited to supporting this audio chip is the CS4232 driver, which generically supports the CS4232 and chips that are compatible with it. When configured as described later in this document, the CS4232 driver provides basic audio support on the ThinkPad 600E.


Out of the box, the Linux kernel is not correctly configured to support power management on the ThinkPad 600E. However, if you re-compile the kernel using the options described later in this document, you'll have support for basic power management, including the ability to "suspend" and "resume." It is important to note that the Linux kernel does not notify device drivers of power management events such as suspend and resume, so you may find that some devices may not work correctly following a suspend-resume sequence; the CS4239 chip, which provides audio support, is such a device.


Although we have not yet done infrared compatibility testing, we have received reports from ThinkPad users indicating that the built-in infrared device does work correctly, after the appropriate Linux software is obtained. To learn more about using your ThinkPad's infrared device with Linux, take a look at some of the links we've included in this document.

ACP Modem

The internal modem of the ThinkPad 600E uses an IBM 3780i digital signal processor (DSP), and is implemented using a combination of hardware and software. Unlike a hardware-only modem typically found in desktop systems and workstations, the ThinkPad ACP Modem requires device drivers in order to function. Although we are currently evaluating whether to provide Linux support for the ACP Modem, IBM has not announced plans for supporting the ACP Modem under Linux.

PC Cards

The versions of the Linux kernel and PCMCIA Card and Socket Services included with Red Hat Linux 6.0 are not sufficient to support the use of PC Cards on the ThinkPad 600E. As described later in this document, you must upgrade both the Linux kernel and PCMCIA Card and Socket Services before using PC Cards.

Links to non-IBM Linux resources

Throughout this document we have included links to various non-IBM Linux resources. For your convenience, the table below provides a list of those links, along with a few others that we thought you might find useful. Note: These are non-IBM sites, and as such they are not supported nor maintained by IBM.

Linux on Laptops [ ] Contains many links to Linux information for numerous laptop models.
linux-thinkpad mailing list [ ] A very popular mailing list for supporting Linux on ThinkPads.
Red Hat, Inc. [ ] Red Hat's web site.
The Linux Kernel Archives [ ] The home of the Linux kernel. Get the latest kernel here.
Linux PCMCIA Information Page [ ] The home of Linux PCMCIA software and documentation.
tpctl Home Page [ ] A ThinkPad configuration tool for Linux.
Linux Documentation Project [ ] A primary source of Linux documentation.

ThinkPad configurations used in developing this Guide In creating this Guide, the following ThinkPad 600E models were used as a basis for testing Linux compatibility. The recommendations made in this Guide are based the results of that testing.2645-4AU Built-in devices supported by Linux
Device Supported? Comments
Basic video Yes .
Basic audio Yes Requires special configuration
TrackPoint (3 button) Yes .
Diskette drive Yes .
Hard disk drive Yes .
CD-ROM drive Yes .
Serial port Yes .
Parallel port Yes .
Infrared port - Not tested
ACP Modem No No drivers available
APM Yes Requires re-compiled kernel
PCMCIA Yes Requires updated kernel and PCMCIA support
"At-a-glance" summary of the installation procedure This section summarizes the ThinkPad-specific steps for installing and configuring Red Hat Linux 6.0. The sections in Part II will provide the details.Boot from the Red Hat 6.0 installation CD and begin the installation.When asked for mouse information, select Generic Mouse (PS/2) . Do not select "Emulate 3rd mouse button."When asked for information about your video adapter and display, select NeoMagic (laptop/notebook) for the video card and LCD Panel 1024x768 for the monitor.
  1. When asked to select which services to run at boot, select the APMD service.
  2. After installation is complete, configure the audio driver.
  3. For proper PC Card support, upgrade to kernel 2.2.12 and PCMCIA card and socket services 3.0.14 .
  4. To enable proper handling of suspend-resume power events, re-compile the kernel with the necessary settings.
ThinkPad Configuration program

IBM has not released a version of the ThinkPad Configuration program that runs on Linux. However, you can run the Windows version of the ThinkPad Configuration program by dual-booting to a Windows installation, and you can run the DOS-based PS2 utility by creating a DOS boot diskette that includes the PS2 utility. Both methods will give you access to most ThinkPad configuration settings. Additionally, several developers in the Linux community have created a native Linux application that provides functions similar to that of the PS2 utility. Click here [ ] to go to the home page for that application.

Part II. Installation and Configuration

Part I provided an overview of Linux support on the ThinkPad 600E. Part II will describe the Linux installation procedures and configuration settings that are specific to the ThinkPad 600E.

Starting the installation

To begin installation of Red Hat Linux, follow the instructions in the Red Hat Linux Installation Guide. Since the ThinkPad 600E supports booting from CD-ROM, you should be able to start the installation of Red Hat Linux by inserting CD 1 into your CD-ROM drive and rebooting your computer. If booting from CD-ROM has been disabled on your computer, then you may need to boot from the Red Hat Linux installation boot diskette. Refer to the Installation Guide for details.


Red Hat Linux includes support for the built-in 3-button TrackPoint mouse. When the Setup program asks you to identify your mouse, make the following selections. Note that Linux will use all three mouse buttons, so do not select "Emulate 3 Buttons."

Setup prompt Recommended selection
What type of mouse do you have? Generic Mouse (PS/2)
Emulate 3 Buttons? No


Red Hat Linux includes a video driver that is compatible with the NeoMagic chipset in the ThinkPad 600E. When the Setup program asks you to identify your video card, make the following selections.

Advanced Power Management (APM) For APM to work correctly, the Linux APM service (APMD) must be running, and the Linux kernel must have been compiled with APM settings that are appropriate for the ThinkPad 600E. When the Setup program asks you to specify which services should be started during boot, be sure to select the service APMD . The pre-built kernels included with Red Hat Linux 6.0 do not include the necessary APM settings for the ThinkPad 600E. After you've completed the Linux installation, you will need to re-build the kernel using the following APM-related settings.

Kernel option Setting
Advanced Power Management BIOS support Yes
Enable PM at boot time Yes
Make CPU idle calls when idle Yes
Enable console blanking using APM Yes
Power off on shutdown Yes
Ignore multiple suspend Yes
Ignore multiple suspend/resume cycles Yes
Allow interrupts during APM BIOS calls Yes
For information on how to re-build the kernel, refer to the "Linux Kernel HOWTO" that is available as part of the Linux Documentation Project [ ] .


Ordinarily, configuring Linux sound support is as simple as running the sndconfig utility and specifying the audio hardware to be used as well as its resource configuration. You may recall from Part I of this Guide that the audio chip in the ThinkPad 600E is a CS4239, and that it is supported by the standard CS4232 audio driver included with Red Hat Linux. However, there is a problem when using the standard CS4232 audio driver with the ThinkPad 600E. The symptom is that when you play a wave file, the sound plays two or more times with various parts of the sound interwoven, as if the interrupt resource was specified incorrectly. The problem occurs when the CS4232 driver is loaded in the usual fashion during boot-up, but it does not occur if the driver is loaded later. There is a work-around, but it may be too involved for a user who is new to Linux. The work around, describe shortly, involves creating a script that will be run during the initialization of a run-level. The procedure for configuring sound on the ThinkPad 600E is summarized below. Use the sndconfig utility to specify the audio device and its resources. Create a script file that loads as part of the desired run-levels. The script will stop and restart the CS4232 audio driver.

Run sndconfig

From a Linux command prompt, issue the command sndconfig . This will start the sound configuration utility, which will let you specify the type of sound card that you have and the resources that it uses. When prompted for the card type, use the following setting.

Setup prompt Recommended selection
Card Type Crystal CS423x sound chip

Next, select the I/O, IRQ, and DMA resources for the sound chip. Listed below are the default settings for the ThinkPad 600E. You can try these, or use a ThinkPad Configuration program to determine the actual settings. In most cases, the settings below should work.

An interesting anomaly: On occasion we have found some systems that require the DMA and DMA2 settings to be reversed (DMA=0, DMA2=1), even when the PS2 utility shows that the default settings are in effect! So if the default settings are in effect for your system but you don't hear any sound with Linux when you specify those settings, try swapping the DMA values.

Setup prompt Recommended selection
I/O PORT 0x530
DMA 2 0
MPU I/O 330

After you specify the resource settings, sndconfig will play some samples. Try to select a resource configuration that results in clear playback of the audio sample.

Another interesting anomaly: On some systems we noticed that the sample playback was garbled, even though the correct settings were specified. In these cases, normal audio playback worked correctly, and audio was garbled only during playback of sndconfig's test samples. Create the CS4232 script. To work around the problem of repeating wave data, you must load the CS4232 driver later in the boot process. One way to do this is by creating a script that is executed during run-level initialization. You can use a script like the one below.

# !/bin/bash
# chkconfig: 345 84 16
# description: Starts/stops the CS4232 driver at boot time and shutdown
case "$1" in
echo "Starting CS4232 driver"
rmmod cs4232
modprobe cs4232
echo "Stopping CS4232 driver"
rmmod cs4232
$0 stop
$0 start
echo "Status (NO-OP)"
echo "Usage: cs4232 {start|stop|status|restart}
exit 1
exit 0

Save the script as /etc/rc.d/init.d/cs4232 and set the "execute" file attribute. Then, for each run-level that you want to include sound support, create an appropriate "symbolic link" to the file from the corresponding run-level directories. For example, to run the script as part of run-level 5, create the link /etc/rc.d/rc5.d/S84cs4232 that points to /etc/rc.d/init.d/cs4232 . The "S84" prefix was chosen for this example because, by default, the mixer service starts as "S85", and we want the CS4232 driver to be functional before that. With the above script in place, the CS4232 driver will be unloaded and reloaded as the run-level is initialized, which will put the CS4232 driver and sound chip into a good state.

Upgrading the kernel and PCMCIA Card and Socket Services

As discussed in Part I, PCMCIA support will not function correctly with the kernel and PCMCIA support provided with Red Hat Linux 6.0. For proper PCMCIA support, you must upgrade both the Linux kernel and PCMCIA Card and Socket Services. At the time of this writing, the recommended versions are:Kernel 2.2.12PCMCIA Card and Socket Services 3.0.14

For the Linux kernel, the files are available from The Linux Kernel Archives [ ] , and documentation on how to upgrade and build the kernel is in the "Linux Kernel HOWTO" that is available as part of the Linux Documentation Project [ ]. For PCMCIA Card and Socket Services, files and HOWTO information are available from the Linux PCMCIA [ ] Information Page. Note: When upgrading the kernel, remember to configure the kernel using the APM settings outlined in the Advanced Power Management section of this document.

Document id:  MIGR-4BP6Q6

Last modified:  2001-05-29

Copyright 2001