New laptop finally here!!

So finally got my new laptop, thanks to my employer, I am the user of a more modern hardware with good speed both on the processor, ram and storage speed. There are still some customization to be done, since the original order was targeting a 1 TB IDE and a 250 GB SSD. After some options came around, I end up with a 250GB and a 250 IDE disk.

The laptop is a Dell Latitude E6410, with some average specs. The point wasn’t get a state of the art, but just a few months of productivity. Plus the performance goes way up when I am runningĀ ArchLinux. I installed Archbang, followed some Youtube videos with OpenBox, and then installed KDE 5.

The good thing of getting a not so cutting edge laptop is that most of the hardware worked. Even the special keys, wifi, and such. Still think it was a pleasant install, and the performance was great, even the keyboard felt nice.

The biggest To-Do right now is finding a harddisk caddy to enclose the original IDE disk and have the double disk on the laptop in spare of the DVD unit. For the moment I am using an external USB-enclosing disk.

External Caddy for the IDE disk.
External Caddy for the IDE disk.

I’ll write some update if I can get it finally done with the internal one:

Internal disk
Internal disk
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Liveblogging my arch installation

So my harddisk died a few days ago šŸ˜¦

I have been using a USB dongle to get online and try to get as much work done as possible, but the issue is that that having a laptop with a usb dongle hanging can lead to accidence that can ruin the performance of a ‘live system’. So instead I got the crazy idea of having my phone SD as the live system and enable it to run my laptop.

Since this is temporary and is a good excuse to learn more about linux, I finally made a transition to a more power user environment. So I am trying ArchLinux.

So far the IRC channel and Wiki have been pretty helpful but one issue I find, is that this is no regular installation but a more custom that I originally thought.

First surprise is that I was suggest against just making a live SD card, and instead do a traditional installation into the SD (no Live environment). The main reason because of the persistence issue. Persistence mode is a way to have the environment on read only. Which means that all the configuration will go away on reboot.

Another issue is because my setup is not that straightforward I need to guess which route should I go. So far I founded 3 different pages:

  • Installation Guide
  • Installing to a USB Key
  • Installing from another distro

So far it seems that each has their own method. I had to go with the third one, although I had my doubts regarding the way I was already advanced on the regular installation.

Thing that I find out is that this is very manual and rudimentary way to get a linux system up. Taken from a movie like inception I was told to use the chroot environment to emulate an arch system within the original host (Xubuntu). Since Xubuntu to a degree is emulated since is on a live environment, I was again asked to do a 2nd environment with mkinitcpio.

So the install was something like this:

  1. Boot from live USB
    1. Download ISO and mount -loop it into /mnt/
      1. chroot to the mounted environment
      2. install new stuff
      3. mount the target drives (SD card)
      4. mount it into the chroot enironment
        1. generate a new chroot with mkinitcpio to setup initial files such as:
          1. grub, keymaps, locale, hostname, etc.

Something to scratch your head, not to mentioned that I need to manually configure drivers for wifi and also drivers for display. Is time to boot, we’ll see how much we could interact.