Dell Vostro 1400
This page deals with setting up Arch Linux on the Dell Vostro 1400 laptop. Nvidia graphics work excellently with the Nvidia 8400GS with no real hacks. I get about 4400 fps in glxgears.
For the Intel Core 2 Duo (and all laptop CPUs) you must follow the instructions to setup the CPU Frequency Scaling.
To know your exact wireless card you can run:
lspci | grep Net
Mini Dell Wireless / Broadcom based cards
If you have a Broadcom BCM4328 802.11a/b/g/n (and maybe other flavours) you can follow the installation instructions for Broadcom BCM4312.
Intel based cards
Follow the instructions for the Intel Wifi 4965 chipset
There is more than one way to do this but we'll use HAL. First enter this as root to get hal.
pacman -S hal
Once it is installed you can start it by typing this as root.
You will want to add "hal" to your daemons list in /etc/rc.conf.
Now that HAL is installed follow the instructions for Synaptic touchpad via HAL policy (this is based on the Vostro 1500 and may not apply but if it seems like everything is frozen after starting X you should probably try this)
First of all it is necessary to install the Xorg server. The easiest way to do this is by entering the following command as root:
pacman -S xorg
Press Y to install all the packages and wait for the download to finish.
Nvidia GeForce 8400M GS
The proprietary Nvidia drivers are setup very easily for the GeForce 8400M GS. Having installed Xorg (see above) you type in this command into the console as root:
pacman -S nvidia
After it has finished downloading you need to configure the Nvidia drivers. You will need to be logged in as root. Enter the following command:
Now, open up /etc/X11/XF86Config in a text editor and comment out the line; Load "type1". For this example we'll use nano:
and comment it out with a hash (#) symble like so:
# Load "type1"
You should now have successfully setup the Nvidia drivers.