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Installing Kanotix 2007 on Gateway MX6708

Prepared for Linux on Laptops by Andy Fielding

Last updated 29Sep07

Laptop Components
Works under Linux?
 CPU: Intel Core Duo T2300 (2 MB L2 Cache | 1.66 GHz | 667 MHz FSB) Yes No special installation procedure required
 Display: 15.4” widescreen ultrabright WXGA TFT Yes ATI Linux driver must be downloaded during installation; see Basic Installation below
 Graphics card: ATI Mobility Radeon X1400 Yes ATI Linux driver must be downloaded during installation; see Basic Installation below
 RAM: 512 MB 533 MHz DDR2 (2256 MB) SODIMM (expandable to 2 GB) Yes No special installation procedure required
 Hard drive: 80 GB SATA (5400 RPM) Yes No special installation procedure required
 Media reader: 4-in-1 Unknown Haven't used
 Network card: Intel PRO/1000 PL Yes No special installation procedure required; high-speed Internet connection auto-detected
 Modem: Motorola SM56 data/fax Unknown Haven't used
 CD/DVD drive: Philips SDVD8441 (DVD +- RW | multi-format | double layer) Yes No special installation procedure required
 Wireless network card: 10/100 Mbps Ethernet LAN Intel PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Unknown Haven't used (other laptop users report success)
 Battery: 6-cell lithium-ion Yes No special installation procedure required
 Audio: SigmaTel high definition Yes No special procedure required (this is the first Linux distro I've used where sound has worked “out of the box”!)

Why to use Kanotix:

Kanotix is a free, cutting-edge (but very stable) Linux distribution based on Debian. It includes the latest KDE desktop environment and hundreds of popular, ready-to-use applications. You can run Kanotix entirely from CD without modifying your system (using “Live CD” technology originated by Knoppix). You can also install it to your hard drive—alone, or alongside other operating systems such as Microsoft Windows™.

The Kanotix project is based in Germany, but you can run it in English by selecting “English” at start-up. There is also a large community of English-speaking Kanotix users on Kanotix's English forums. For immediate help (or just to socialize), Kanotix's desktop includes an icon you can click to chat with other Kanotix users on IRC.

Linux Kernel:

Version 2.6.22 (modified Ubuntu)

Obtaining and running the Kanotix Live CD:
  1. Download the latest Kanotix disc-image file from the Kanotix website or one of its download mirrors.
  2. Burn the file to a blank CD. (Be sure to use your burning software's “disc image” mode.)
  3. Be sure you are connected to the Internet.
  4. With the Kanotix CD in your drive, restart your PC and set it to boot from the CD rather than your hard drive. (See your PC's manual for details.)
  5. The Kanotix start-up screen appears. Press the Down arrow key to select the "English" option.
  6. You'll now add a short command to the start-up commands near the bottom of the screen. This tells Kanotix to automatically download the ATI Linux video driver. (Be sure to include a space after the existing commands.) Type the following:

      screen=auto fglrx

    [That's the letter L, not the number 1]

  7. Press Enter. The CD continues booting. In a couple of minutes you should have a complete Linux desktop running from CD.
Installing Kanotix to your hard drive (optional):
  1. On the K menu, point to System, then click Acritox Installer.
  2. Follow the instructions to install Kanotix to your hard drive. If your hard drive already has another operating system, the installer gives you the option of resizing its partitions to accommodate both operating systems. Note: To use Suspend-to-Disk (a/k/a Standy mode), you must have Acritox Installer create a Linux Swap partition at least twice the size of your RAM.
  3. The installer automatically copies and configures the ATI video driver.
Unresolved issues:

After learning how to include the ATI driver, I've been quite pleased with Kanotix's performance on my MX6708 and have had no further problems.

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