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Thread: Can Ubuntu Be Installed on a Dell D630 Laptop?

  1. #11
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    Re: Can Ubuntu Be Installed on a Dell D630 Laptop?

    Many of the older machines you're looking at only have 32 bit processors. As oldfred mentioned, Linux can utilize more than 3 GB of RAM using a hack called PAE. Linux is quite memory efficient - most distros can run comfortably with only 2GB of RAM, and more than 4GB is overkill unless you have a special need for it.

    I'm running a Dell E4300 (equivalent to the E6400 but a smaller screen) with a Core2 Duo processor and 2GB of RAM. I'm not running Ubuntu at the moment, but I am running Debian 7.0, which is very similar under the hood to Ubuntu 12.04 LTS. Everything worked "out of the box" on my machine, and I'm having no problem running a full, 3D composited desktop environment (in my case, Gnome Shell). The only issue you may run in to with the Latitude E4300, E5400, E6400 line is that some of them shipped with Broadcomm wireless cards, which are notoriously hard to get working in Linux. It can be done, but it takes some extra work.

    The Thinkpad line is reputed to have good Linux compatibility, but I don't have any personal experience to back that up.

    As far as graphics programs go... Just bear in mind that you're talking about a 4-6 year old laptop with a mobile processor. You could probably run 3D modeling or CAD software but I wouldn't expect miracles.
    Last edited by PhilGil; March 21st, 2013 at 06:53 AM.

  2. #12
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    Re: Can Ubuntu Be Installed on a Dell D630 Laptop?

    It most certainly can.
    I run Version 10.04 LTS and Version 12.04 LTS on a Dell D620.
    I have no problems at all. Just use normal installation procedure.
    Hope this helps.

  3. #13
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    Re: Can Ubuntu Be Installed on a Dell D630 Laptop?

    Quote Originally Posted by grahammechanical View Post
    The way we find out if Ubuntu can be installed on our machine is to download an ISO image and burn it to DVD/USB stick and try running it as a Live Session. Things will run a little slower because the operating system is not being loaded from the hard disk but at least we can find out if our hardware (wireless and stuff) is supported. Doing this is a good way to find out if there will be any issues with installing Ubuntu. Then we can research in advance to solve the problems when they happen.

    http://www.ubuntu.com/download/help/...g-term-support
    Have an IBM Thinkpad X60s with 2GB of RAM http://support.lenovo.com/en_US/down...DocID=PD000842. Pics at: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&s...mg.FLLwWtCskDc

    Loaded a 4GB USB Flash Drive with vrs. 12.04. Changed the BIOS to load from the USB Flash Drive first. It just hung when the PC started.

    Taking advice from SSULLY at http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.p...9#post10256929 I loaded a different 4GB Flash Drive with UBUNTU vrs. 10.10. This version ran great right out of the box.

    The procedure to create a bootable USB is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_02Ca5LJpg

    Found UBUNTU 10.10 at http://linux.softpedia.com/, and used 11.x (.something) in the NetBootin selection, as 10.10 was not listed for some interesting reason. NetBootin worked fine, as the PC booted vrs 10.10 w/no problems from my USB 4GB Stick (which only used 800mb).

    I hope this helps.
    Last edited by DanPerecky; May 13th, 2013 at 08:06 AM.

  4. #14
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    Re: Can Ubuntu Be Installed on a Dell D630 Laptop?

    Both 10.10 and 11.* are out of support and should not be used. A light 13.04 like Xubuntu is a better choice.
    Bringing old hardware back to life. About problems due to upgrading.
    Please visit Quick Links -> Unanswered Posts
    Don't use this space for a list of your hardware. It only creates false hits in the search engines.

  5. #15
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    Re: Can Ubuntu Be Installed on a Dell D630 Laptop?

    Quote Originally Posted by TomBrooklyn View Post
    [...] I may be able to find a notebook with 4GB or more of RAM, which I would greatly prefer to 2GB, which is the minimum I am considering to get.

    Can Ubuntu or any Linux distros take advantage of more than 3 GB of RAM?

    If I'm not mistaken, only 64bit operating systems can do that.
    Sorry, for being late_to_the_party...

    I don't normally reply to 'old' threads, but the Dell Latitude D620/D630 series are arguably the best selling Dell laptops of all time. They're built like tanks, and I have a *feeling* they'll be around for a long time.

    I am running a Lubuntu fork (Peppermint 4 OS, 64-bit) on both a D620 & ATG D630; currently on top of a Linux 3.13-rc3 'Trusty' kernel. Both of them work great.

    To answer the RAM question directly:

    • The D620 will recognize 4GB (2x2GB) RAM, but due to a bug in the BIOS chip, only 3GB is usable. So, on the D620 I run 2GB in the A-socket, and 1GB in the B-socket. It'll work fine with 2x2GB RAM installed, but it's a waste of resources, since only 3GB is usable.

    • The ATG D630 will recognize 8GB (2x4GB), with certain BIOS firmware. However, 4GB SODIMMs are pretty expensive ($150-$200 for the pair, at last check) so the sweet_spot IMO is 4GB (2x2GB), all of which is usable, minus a small amount of overhead. AFAIK, all D630 BIOS firmware will recognize/use the full 4GB RAM.

    Bottom line:

    • You can run 64-bit Ubuntu et al. on both the D620 & D630.

    • Usable RAM on a D620 is 3GB -- usable RAM on a D630 is 8GB -- 4GB being the most cost-effective.
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  6. #16
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    Re: Can Ubuntu Be Installed on a Dell D630 Laptop?

    Quote Originally Posted by PhilGil View Post
    The only issue you may run in to with the Latitude E4300, E5400, E6400 line is that some of them shipped with Broadcomm wireless cards, which are notoriously hard to get working in Linux. It can be done, but it takes some extra work.
    I know we're talking apples n' oranges here, but...

    Regarding Ubu on the D620/D630 -- I've had the best luck using the lowly Dell 1390 WLAN mini-card (Broadcom) via b43 drivers -- works great, no blinking WIFI LED, et cetera. Just saying.

    I just snapped some screenies of my ATG D630, if anyone is interested:







    The Conky widgets on the right-side pretty much tell it all.

    If you look at the bottom panel, you'll see two battery icons. I'm running a 9-cell primary battery, and a 6-cell secondary.

    Also, you might notice the green WIFI icon on the bottom panel looks different. I run WiCD for the network manager. Can't stand NM.

    Oh, and one last thing. Conky reports the 2.6GHz C2D CPU is loafing along @ 0.80GHz. It automagically does this to save the batteries and reduce heat (46C/47C reported in the lower panel) when the extra power isn't needed.

    There's a lot of life left in these things. They're the '55 & '57 Chevies of Dell computers...
    Last edited by VinDSL; December 7th, 2013 at 08:06 PM. Reason: Addendum
    Intel ® P4 Extreme Edition 3.4 (Gallatin) || DFI ® LanParty PRO875B rev B1
    Crucial ® Ballistix Tracer PC4000 1GB || Mountain Mods U2-UFO Opti-1203
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