Dell Vostro 1500

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Test Configuration: 1.4Ghz Core 2 Duo; 2G RAM, Intel integrated Graphics card, Bluetooth, no webcam


Device Status Modules
Intel GM965/GL960 Onboard Graphics Working xf86-video-intel
NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS Working Nouveau
Ethernet Working b44
Wireless Working iwl3945
Audio Working snd_hda_intel
Modem Untested
Card Reader Working


No problems noted after a few days of use.


  1. Use the standard Arch installation disc (I used archlinux-2009.02-core-i686.iso). Note that the FULL install disk (with "core" in the name instead of "ftp", approx. 320MB) has the necessary drivers to install wireless networking for the Intel PRO/Wireless 3945 card. You can use the "ftp" install disc if you will be installing the base system over wired ethernet.)
  2. Follow the Beginners_Guide


Xorg 7.4

  1. Install xorg
    pacman -S xorg
  2. Install Synaptic Mouse Driver
    pacman -S xf86-input-synaptics

The new xorg auto-configuration (starting without an xorg.conf file) worked fine for me. In fact, none of the recommended methods of generating a usable starting xorg.conf file worked for me. So try the easy route and just "startx." Note that CTRL-ALT-BACKSPACE is disabled by default in the latest Xorg, so if you do not have a window manager installed, you might need to use CTRL-ALT-F1 to get back to a console to CTRL-C kill Xorg manually.


The default synaptics configuration is set up for two finger vertical scroll and one-tap click, which works well for me. See Touchpad_Synaptics for more info.


Intel PRO/Wireless 3945

One source of helpful information about your hardware is the Arch package 'hwd' Install with:

 pacman -S hwd

If your hwd -s shows this:

 Network    : PRO/Wireless 3945ABG [Golan] Network Connection module: iwl3945

You are required to get iwlwifi-3945-ucode out of [core].

# pacman -S iwlwifi-3945-ucode

This package is also available [core-devel] on the 2009.02 installer CD.

Then add iwl3945 to your MODULES array in /etc/rc.conf

MODULES=( ... iwl3945 ... )

If your hwd -s shows another wireless card, search the Arch wiki for information or see the Wireless Startup Guide.


Wicd is a network manager which allows you to connect to wireless networks very easily, you can follow this wiki page Wicd


Still untested, but the following is pasted in from a page about the Dell Inspirion 1521:

  • Suspend and Hibernate works with pm-utils
  • Also works by issuing
    echo mem > /sys/power/state

Adjust Brightness

Adjust normally with the FN Keys if your using the kernel 2.6.24 or greater


Untested for me, but this may work for you: You need hsfmodem package from AUR in order to get modem working. After you install that package you need to:

  1. Run hsfconfig as root to build the module and initialise the modem. A reboot is required before the modem can be initialised. Run hsfconfig again after reboot.
  2. The modules are automatically loaded and a /dev/modem symlink is setup for use with the modem. Now use wvdial or other dialer programs to connect to the internet.

I didn't test dialing, however I could see the modem device in /dev.


I do not have one, but you may need the uvcvideo module (someone confirm this)

# modprobe uvcvideo

Add it to your /etc/rc.conf modules line. More information can be found in Webcam_Setup wiki entry.

For more information see the Webcam_Setup page.

USB, SD card slot, Ethernet, Firewire, VGA, S-video

All work out of the box.


Get xbindkeys from [extra]:

# pacman -S xbindkeys

Add 'xbindkeys &' in $HOME/.xinitrc right before your window manager is executed.

Create $HOME/.xbindkeysrc file with:

"amixer set Master 5+ unmute"

"amixer set Master 5- unmute"

"amixer set 'Master' toggle"

#"audioplayer -next"
# XF86AudioNext

#"audioplayer -pause"
# XF86AudioPlay

#"audioplayer -stop"
# XF86AudioStop

#"audioplayer -previous"
# XF86AudioPrev

SD Card Reader

Works out of the box. I do this to mount:

 sudo mkdir /mnt/scard
 sudo mount -t vfat /dev/mmcblk0p1 /mnt/sdcard




Keyboard & Synaptics: