Debian Linux on an Acer TravelMate C112 Ti

This report is listed at TuxMobil - Linux on laptops, notebooks, PDAs and mobile phones

This machine is a replacement for my joyous Acer TravelMate C100,
which I have successfully wrecked through 18 months of continous
use... and then palmed it off onto my Dad.

The C112 Ti is an "up-rated" version of the C110, although the badge on
it still says "TravelMate C110".

The C112 Ti uses a 1.1Ghz Pentium(R) M Processor:

	lkcl@highfield:~$ cat /proc/cpuinfo 
	processor       : 0
	vendor_id       : GenuineIntel
	cpu family      : 6
	model           : 13
	model name      : Intel(R) Pentium(R) M processor 1.10GHz
	stepping        : 6
	cpu MHz         : 1100.014
	cache size      : 2048 KB
	fdiv_bug        : no
	hlt_bug         : no
	f00f_bug        : no
	coma_bug        : no
	fpu             : yes
	fpu_exception   : yes
	cpuid level     : 2
	wp              : yes
	flags           : fpu vme de pse tsc msr mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov pat clflush dts acpi mmx fxsr sse sse2 ss tm pbe est tm2
	bogomips        : 2179.07

At the time that the Acer TravelMate C100 was purchased, its hardware
was not fully or properly supported, and the C112 is no different.
Ironically, after nearly two years, the C100's hardware is now FULLY
supported by Linux - including the ACPI after a hack - just as i get
rid of the damn thing.  Damn, damn, there's even an Acer Hotkeys
Gentoo package.

Installation of Debian was carried out over a PXE Boot due to the
difficulties I experienced with the C100 (the IDE controller for the
CDROM is at a non-standard port...), and due to the fact that the
C112 comes with an external FireWire DVD+RW, I just... didn't want
the hassle or to even find OUT if I would encounter any hassle.

I originally installed a PXE boot environment on my Sony Z600 HEK
some three nearly four years ago, and have performed network-based
root-nfs-managed copies of the hard drive from laptop to laptop three
times now.  I don't even bother actually doing an install: I simply
compile a kernel with NFS Root FS support, I have a miniature
(manually copied!  kids!  don't do this at home: use debootstrap instead!)
Root Filesystem into which I have manually installed various commands like
grub, ssh, rsync, install-mbr etc. over time, and I just... PXE-boot from
that, then of course I have direct access to the drive, set up the partitions,
then rsync the contents of the old laptop over ssh to the new one, chroot
to it, mount /proc, cd /dev, run MAKEDEV, run install-mbr, run grub-install
and then reboot to see if it worked.  Usually, it doesn't, so I reboot
using PXE again and fix whatever I found... :)

There's a much more reasonable description of my ramblings, above,
at the Gentoo Wiki on the C100.

For more "sane" people, however, I recommend that you investigate
Hands Free Debian for installation over PXE/Netboot, USB-Dongle/Netboot,
CD/Netboot because phil has set up an "unattented" Debian Install
infrastructure, and it's really cool and Going Places.

The usual boring joyous lspci:

	00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corp. 82852/855GM Host Bridge (rev 02)
	00:00.1 System peripheral: Intel Corp.: Unknown device 3584 (rev 02)
	00:00.3 System peripheral: Intel Corp.: Unknown device 3585 (rev 02)
	00:01.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corp.: Unknown device 3581 (rev 02)
	00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corp. 82852/855GM Integrated Graphics Device (rev 02)
	00:02.1 Display controller: Intel Corp. 82852/855GM Integrated Graphics Device (rev 02)
	00:1d.0 USB Controller: Intel Corp. 82801DB USB (Hub #1) (rev 03)
	00:1d.1 USB Controller: Intel Corp. 82801DB USB (Hub #2) (rev 03)
	00:1d.2 USB Controller: Intel Corp. 82801DB USB (Hub #3) (rev 03)
	00:1d.7 USB Controller: Intel Corp. 82801DB USB2 (rev 03)
	00:1e.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corp. 82801BAM/CAM PCI Bridge (rev 83)
	00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corp. 82801DBM LPC Interface Controller (rev 03)
	00:1f.1 IDE interface: Intel Corp. 82801DBM Ultra ATA Storage Controller (rev 03)
	00:1f.3 SMBus: Intel Corp. 82801DB/DBM SMBus Controller (rev 03)
	00:1f.5 Multimedia audio controller: Intel Corp. 82801DB AC'97 Audio Controller (rev 03)
	00:1f.6 Modem: Intel Corp. 82801DB AC'97 Modem Controller (rev 03)
	02:01.0 CardBus bridge: Ricoh Co Ltd RL5c475 (rev b8)
	02:01.1 FireWire (IEEE 1394): Ricoh Co Ltd R5C551 IEEE 1394 Controller
	02:05.0 Network controller: Intel Corp.: Unknown device 4220 (rev 05)
	02:08.0 Ethernet controller: Intel Corp. 82801BD PRO/100 VE (MOB) Ethernet Controller (rev 83)

The Network Controller is my favourite: it's a COMBINED 802.11g plus
Bluetooth (yes, bluetooth!) built-in PCI device, and is it supported?
Is it buggery.

The USB and Firewire controllers?  No problem.

The Wacom Touchscreen? Setup here because it's an i2c
SMbus device, supported by wacom-tools and the wacom driver:
thanks to Danny Kukawa he knows about these
Wacom devices and how to detect and configure them.

	ACPI, unlike the C100, works absolutely fine with the standard Debian
2.6.11 kernel.  CPUfreq packages, KDE "power management", blah blah,
all absolutely fine, boring boring.

Known Working components:

	Screen, Keyboard, Mouse, Ethernet, Firewire, USB, ATA IDE,
	AC97 Audio, CardBus.

Untested components:

	AC97 Modem Controller (who cares!  this is the C21st!)

Not working components (yet... give it a year or so...):

	Combined 802.11g+Bluetooth device.

In other words, for 1200 inc VAT, you get a really nice small machine
which weighs 1.5kg and Does The Job.  oh - and you get an external
FireWire DVD+RW thrown in, too.

As for the missing hardware, I retrieved my Linksys WPC11 802.11b PCMCIA
card from the person I'd lent it to, plugged it in, worked straight-off.
I've yet to find a need to plug in my TDK USB Bluetooth dongle
(roll on the Bluetooth ALSA driver, come on guys!) but, being a USB
device, I expect it to work, but when I do actually bother to plug
it in, will update this page accordingly.

p.s. the 1024x768 screen on the C112 is a lot sharper and brighter than
that of the C100, but still nowhere near as good as the Sony Z600HEK.