Saturday, January 10, 2009

Yes, it's working!!

I was almost ready to throw my Hp 2133 out of the window due all the problems with it and Linux. But i finally got it working on Ubuntu, the blog reader "Thibault" told me his Ubuntu 8.10 works perfect but he installed Ubuntu 8.04 and used the built-in release upgrader to upgrade it to 8.10, so i took his advice and tried it... And surprisingly it worked just fine, but ju need to add live forcevesa But people on forums in registered to reported Ubuntu 8.10 should work without installing 8.04 and using the upgrader.

NOTE: You need to add live forcevesa and you cannot install when using the latest BIOS, you need to downgrade. F02 worked fine for me.

Wireless and Bluetooth - Wireless works after installing the recognized driver, bluetooth work out of the box .

Ethernet - Works out of the box

Sound - Works out of the box (I've noticed that sound can be turned up to a volume that the speakers cannot handle, be careful.)

Cardreader - Works out of the box

Graphic - The Via driver still got a lot to go, the vesa driver works better then i tought it would, Youtube and videos with small resolution works great. Driver guide will arrive be patient.

Webcam and mic - Webcam works out of the box with Cheese, to install go to the app guide. Mic didn't work with skype and some other application.

We got a new Moderator on the blog who got everything working on his 2133, including 3d. Welcome Alan.


  1. Marcus,
    You wrote that you tried many different BIOS versions. Which BIOS version did you settle on when installing 8.04.1?

    Why is it that the extra option which is supposed to get the screen to work right has so many forms? One source has it as 'live xforcevesa', another as 'forcevesa' and yet another as 'xforcevesa' without the 'live' prefix.

    I'm a rank amateur with Linux and also having problems installing either 8.04.1 or 8.10 even though I use the extra option 'live xforcevesa' (which works on a different machine). When I try to run a live session using 8.04.1 from a USB memory stick I even get the start up sound, but no video, just strange lights on the screen and then it apparently gets stuck.

    With Vista Basic my Mini-Note works 'ok'. However, especially since I installed McAfee VirusScan, it is very sluggish and the CPU usage peaks at 100% often. E.g. it takes 'ages' to start Firefox to the degree that it even shows '(Not responding)'

    Immediately after I got the machine I upgraded the BIOS to the latest F.05F, which I would say is normal procedure.

    (However, lately the newest BIOS versions for a computer apparently aren't any longer necessarily the best; I should have known from my recent experience with both a Fujitsu Siemens Amilo Pa1538 and an HP DV2140; with the latest BIOS versions both machines run their fan at max. speed all the time, obviously just to be safe, but very annoying, of course.)


  2. Hello Arjen!
    1. When i got it working i used BIOS version F02
    2. About the boot option there's only one that has worked for which is seen in my latest post.
    i guess there's different vesa boot options on different distro's, so try that and downgrade the bios before installation, after installation, i think you can upgrade your bios again, i haven't tried it yet.
    3. Vista works terrible on my computer too, if you would like to have Windows on it too Download and Install Windows Seven which works great after all the drivers are installed.

    4.My fan is running all the time and after a while my video playback sucks.

    Get back to me after you tried it and again i really recommend Windows Seven.

  3. Hey marcus, Thanks for noticing my name, hope everything works fine for you.

    I tried recently something tricky which work very fine, i installed Windows XP on a SD card 8 GO for the 2133
    its very interesting for the Iphone users especialy, this hardware doesnt work with a Virtualize Windows .....
    anyway , this computer is a GEM :)

  4. You're very welcome. I've only got Vista and Seven to boot. How did you do it? I've read about it but there's so many ways and it's way easier to get Vista or Seven to boot, simple commands in command prompt.

    If someone is interested I'll post a topic about it.

  5. I just found out what the reason was I had so little success running even just a live Ubuntu session on my HP2133.
    When booting from the USB stick I routinely combined a choice of Dutch as a language with a Finnish keyboard!

    All the time I had assumed that loosing about every other character from the 'live xforcevesa' command I typed after all the other command line parameters (F6 option) was 'normal', perhaps because of the line being too long. How silly.

    Then I figured I should try and erase some of what was already there and then try and type the erased text back on the command line. Again characters were dropped.
    Next time I booted with a USA (International) keyboard setting which - for unfathomable silly reasons - is the keyboard commonly used in the Netherlands (instead of the real Dutch keyboard, which does exist).
    Hey presto, all characters typed are echoed to the command line as they should be, and the 'live xforcevesa' command works!
    Great, my first Ubuntu session (8.04.1) on the HP2133 is a fact!

    My HP2133 has a screen of 1024x600 pixels, 2GB RAM, 1600 MHz clock, 120 GB disk, a Finnish keyboard and Vista Home Basic installed on the hard disk.
    Part of the disk I took away from Vista and is now free, unpartitioned.
    Its productcode is FU345EA#AK8.
    It came with BIOS version F.03 (I think), which I updated to F.05F the very first day.

    Next I need to make a Ubuntu 8.10 USB stick and then on to installing Ubuntu to the free part of the disk ...

    Since I installed McAfee VirusScan Enterprise 8.5.0i Vista has become pretty sluggish. I use a Transcend 4GB SDHC card, class 6, for ReadyBoost under Vista. It took a lot of 'tests' (10 or more) before it was accepted by Vista and I don't know whether it makes Vista work faster. Being a Class 6 deviced it should be fast enough.

    Arjen, Helsinki

  6. I should have known, as I read it somewhere, too, but Ubuntu 8.10 won't run on the HP2133 as a live session from a USB stick using the live xforcevesa option.
    Only 8.04.1 works and only if it is the non-persistent version!
    With the persistent version one just gets a initramfs (?) prompt and no 'desk top'.

    In a live session of Ubuntu 8.10 with the built-in command to install to a USB stick running on another computer I installed 8.04.1 to a USB stick from the iso image for 8.04.1.

    A potentially nasty problem is that, because the vesa screen is only 640x480, many application windows are too large to fit.
    I need to find out how to move a window upwards on the desk top such that I can reach the buttons at the bottom of the window ...

    Otherwise this seems to be the way to go.
    The wired network connection works and I have access to the other windows computers on the local network. Very nice.
    I just shrunk the Vista partition from the 8.04.1 live session (GPARTED) to make space for the Ubuntu-installation. That went very smoothly, too.
    Looking better now.
    Arjen, Helsinki

  7. I have got it working with 8.04.1,8.10 and 9.04 but only with BIOS F02, may work with F3 too i don't know. And for some reason my blog blocks me from writing the complete boot command, go here for the complete boot command:
    I get the resolution 1024x600, but after config the xorg it's back to 1024x768. I'm gonna config one for you..

  8. Marcus,

    Yes, I would be interested to have your xorg.conf file!
    A 640x480 screen is pretty restrictive :-(

    I have had a lot of success in installing Ubuntu through some hard work yesterday.

    My bout of success apparently exhausted, when I tried the xorg.conf from I changed the PanelID value for 8.04 as per the comments (I now have 8.04.2 after the automatic updates).
    However, no higher screen resolution values have become available ...

    The grub boot menu configuration file didn't contain the word xforcevesa anywhere, so there was nothing to remove there.

    Ubuntu offered the Broadcom STA wireless driver and I accepted. WLAN works now, too. Very good.

    I haven't tried a newer version of Ubuntu and I've kept the BIOS F.05F.

    I've found the answer to my question about moving windows about on a small screen. Search machines have been very helpful during this whole process of getting grip on this little machine, also on the Vista side and especially in partitioning the hard disk. I did almost all disk management with GParted and not so much the installation routine or the Vista disk management (very limited!).
    The hard disk of the HP2133 already had two primary partitions to start with and after doing some 'research', I wanted to make one for /, one for /home and one for swap.
    I shrunk and moved the HP recovery partition a bit, too. So much the indicator bar in Vista's Explorer is now red instead of blue ...

    If size were the only problem, one could perhaps copy the recovery partition to a 16 GB USB stick and remove it from the hard disk. The BIOS seems to have a *one-time* option for copying to CD's or DVD's, but I don't want to waste the one-time by trying to copy to USB memory unless I know it can be done.

    In addition I have an NTFS partition and another in FAT32 to share or copy data between Vista and Ubuntu.
    I've found a FAT32 partition useful for removing all user right restrictions from files (my Windows *XP Home* has the NT security package installed!).
    Now that I come to think of it, one could use a USB stick for that, too, as it is not something one needs every day ... At the time I set up that earlier machine there were no big, say 16 GB USB flash memory sticks around ...

    Does your 9.04 version perhaps come with an xorg.conf that works with the HP2133?

    Arjen, Helsinki

  9. Hey Arjen again, It should work after these steps..
    Download the VIA driver and install it.

    This one (BETA): 85a-43862-u810-2d-bin.tar.gz

    Then apply this before restart(xorg.conf):

  10. Marcus,
    Thanks for your kind help, I found the files, although I really still need to check the chipset.
    I can't try the 85a-43862-u810-2d driver right now - it's too late - but the name implies it is meant for Ubuntu 8.10.
    Are you sure it also works with 8.04? (That's what I have right now, actually it says 8.04.2 and the kernel number ends in -23 instead of -19).

    I should probably register on some Ubuntu forum, but I've been too busy finding out stuff; also working on the Vista installation.

    Because the partition manager is not on the installed Ubuntu's System menu, I dug out the USB stick to make a small change to the partitioning as well.
    I have really been getting somewhere with this 'travel computer' of mine these last two days.
    Thanks again!
    Arjen, Helsinki

  11. You're very welcome:)

    Use the driver for your operative system. Do not use the 8.10 driver if you're on 8.04, i just forgot you had the 8.04.

    Please reply your results.

  12. Marcus,

    After doing some research, but not much, I installed driver
    and copied the xorg.conf for 8.04 from the wiki into /etc/X11.
    After logging in anew the resolution was much higher than VGA, but the screen didn't look quite right, so I manually set it to 1024x600.
    Still it wasn't quite right looking like Ubuntu thought the screen is bigger than it actually was and showing only part of it.

    Then I remembered some stuff I had read about PanelID etc. and never being too lame to potentially get myself into trouble all the while trusting in the power of the Internet and search machines, I took my chances and edited two values in the xorg.conf, which I figured could be the source of the problem, viz. the PanelID and the resolution setting for the Device. The latter was at the value for the high end model with the WXVGA screen (1278x???).
    The result is the following:

    The top panel got a little mangled in the process, but it was not too difficult to find out how to move the items about and get everything where I wanted.
    I'm surprised I got away with it.

    FYI, the two changes were applied in these places:

    Section "Screen"
    DefaultDepth 32
    SubSection "Display"
    Depth 32
    Modes "1024x600" <--- here

    and in the next section:
    Section "Device"
    BoardName "Framebuffer Graphics"
    Driver "via"
    Identifier "Device[0]"
    Screen 0
    VendorName "VIA Technology"
    Option "NoDDCValue"
    Option "ActiveDevice" "LCD,CRT"
    Option "PanelID" "17" <--- here

    I also edited the /boot/grub/menu.lst more to my liking.
    At the end of the menu there were two items named 'Windows Vista ...'; the last one apparently for booting the HP Recovery partition (it has 'root hd(0,2)', I think).
    As you don't want to do start recovery by accident, I marked that item clearly with an extra divider and changed the title.
    I also made the 'acpi' addition to the command line for the normal Ubuntu start items in menu.lst.
    So far so good. The screen looks very nice now.

    Arjen, Helsinki

  13. Marcus, did you loose my latest comment(s) of several days (up to a week even) ago?
    The captcha gives me trouble almost everytime, btw.


  14. Hey again Arjen!

    It's been a while since i was logged on to the blog but now your comments are posted. Your graphic and screen resolution is a bit different from mine but I'm glad you got it working. I actually sold my HP's was incompatible with my life, hehe. But I'm still gonna update the blog.. until' someone else is willing to.

    Thanks Arjen

  15. Hello... Im very glad to have found this blog. Could you explain to me how to downgrade my BIOS?

  16. Hello TJ!

    Go to this link

    Choose operative system and then BIOS, if you're under Windows now you can download the .exe file if you're not on Windows you can download the .iso file and put it on a CD or USB. I downloaded the .exe file when i was under Windows since it automatically can create a bootable USB BIOS update.

    Please provide feedback! Goodluck:)