HP Compaq 6510b

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Revision as of 11:22, 21 January 2008 by B (talk | contribs) (AuthenTec AES2501 fingerprint reader)
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The HP 6510b is a compact yet powerful laptop with a high-resolution screen (if you pick the WXGA+ version). It has been labeled "Novel SuSE Enterprise certified" by HP, which should mean Linux runs fine on it.

Hardware specifications

  • Intel Core 2 Duo T7100 / T7300
  • 2 GB of DDR2 533 Mhz SO-DIMM
  • 14.1" 1280x800 WXGA / 1440x900 WXGA+ TFT
  • Intel GMA965GM chipset with X3100 onboard GPU
  • IPW3945 a/b/g wireless LAN miniPCI with wireless hardware switch
  • Broadcom Tigon Gigabit LAN adapter
  • Infineon TPM
  • AuthenTec AES2501 fingerprint reader
  • built-in Bluetooth
  • cardreader (supporting SD, MemoryStick, ea.)
  • 4x USB 2.0
  • 1x FireWire 400 4-pin connector


Intel Core 2 Duo

Automatic frequency throttling and voltage adjustment can be enabled by loading the acpi_cpufreq module (this one is to be preferred over the Intel Speedstep ones; those will be deprecated soon). Install cpufreqd, which will pull in cpufreq-utils along with it. Set up both utilities, and add cpufreqd as a daemon to your DAEMONS=() array (in /etc/rc.conf, that is).

X3100 onboard GPU

Feature-wise this is an awesome GPU. Opensource drivers that support 3D out of the box. However, it has a problem many of the Intel GPUs have: it will stick to VESA resolutions in the framebuffer. Since the only fitting resolution is 1024x768, that is what you'll when using a framebuffer (on boot, and in a command line environment). You can check what modes the GPU supports like this:

[stijn@lysithea ~]$ cat /sys/class/graphics/fb0/modes

As you can see this is the only resolution. According to the uvesafb FAQ, if that's all you get, not even uvesafb can fix it up for you. For earlier chipsets (865 and 915 for example) tools like 855resolution and 915resolution are available, but the latter does not support the Intel G965M yet. However, there is a patch that fixes that :-). You can find an adapted PKGBUILD and a patch here. This allows you to set the 1440x900 resolution, but one needs to dig far deeper into the system to get the system booting in that resolution, it seems.

IPW3945 ABG wireless LAN

You have two choices for this card, either go with the present (and soon to be phased out) ieee80211 stack, or with the successor, the mac80211 stack. Both are present in the Arch kernel from 2.6.22 on. With the former you'll need Intel's proprietary regulatory daemon and firmware, and - last but not least - the driver; the latter does not require any regulatory daemon, but still requires the driver and firmware to be installed.

Note: each driver needs different firmware!

The radio switch is hardware (it sits on the tactile strip), which is pretty convenient. Just touch it and the radio gets enabled :-).

Broadcom NetLink BCM5787M Gigabit LAN

No setup required, it just needs the tg3 module.

Suspend to RAM/disk

I use pm-utils for this, which is pretty straightforward. X tends to hang once in a while after resuming, you can fix this (although not perfectly) by adding the following VBE Tool 'hack' to in /etc/pm/sleep.d/00hacks:

case $1 in
        chvt 1
        vbetool vbestate save > /tmp/vbe
        vbetool post
        vbetool vbestate restore < /tmp/vbe
        chvt 7

If your screen remains blank, just try moving your mouse cursor, your screen should display just fine then.
Alternatively, you could leave pm-utils alone and add a so-called quirk to HAL's info file - 20-video-quirk-pm-hp.fdi to be specific, right below the line that says

   <match key="system.hardware.vendor" string="Hewlett Packard">

This is the quirk I cooked up, following the instructions on the HAL page:

     <match key="system.hardware.product" contains="6510b">
        <merge key="power_management.quirk.vbe_post" type="bool">true</merge>
        <merge key="power_management.quirk.vbestate_restore" type="bool">true</merge>

From hal-info 20071212 on HAL provides this quirk out of the box - no more fiddling needed :-). The HAL quirk means the vbetool lines are no longer necessary in the 00hacks file. You'll still need to change virtual terminal though to have X resume correctly!
A third alternative would be to add some VbeTool options to your Xorg.conf, that seems to do the trick too. Haven't tried it myself, however.

If you are using Xfce, you can suspend to RAM or disk from the Xfce logout dialog. You do need a modified session manager for this though. You can find the patch that adds that functionality and the corresponding PKGBUILD online.

Suspend to disk works fine with the 2.6.22 kernels (at least up to Newer kernels do not seem able to suspend to disk without needing the

highres=off nohz=off

options in grub.conf.


FireWire is supported out of the box, however, for FireWire HD support, you might need to load the sbp2 module (that is, if you are using the common stack, since a new one is in the works and already present in the kernel). You have the common stack if you run stock Arch kernels.

AuthenTec AES2501 fingerprint reader

As duly pointed out on the forums, fingerprint readers are more a threat to your privacy than a safeguard. Your fingerprints (unless you are paranoid and type with gloves on) are likely to be all over your keyboard, rendering the 'security' purpose of this device useless. Keep this in mind if you intend to use the reader as a replacement for your password; fingerprints can be duplicated easily with basic stuff (graphite ea.).
There is a utility called fprint available, together with a libfprint library it depends on. Both are packaged for Arch Linux. The fprint program is still called fprint_demo for the moment, but it works :-). On the forum you can also find a topic that covers setting up your fingerprint reader with PAM and SLiM, but this is with the aes2501 kernelspace driver. Integration with the login manager seems possible - for that you'll need amongst others the pam_fprint module installed (find a PKGBUILD here).

Tactile strip

This laptop sports a fancy tactile strip, providing some extra buttons as well as volume control (toggling mute and changing volume). Since hal seems not to be working yet for the quirks, I didn't bother trying to get hal working for my multimedia keys either. That's where keytouch steps in. The HP NC6320 settings (pre-supplied by keytouch) seem to work just fine for muting & adjusting the volume. The 'Help' key (left to the radio switch) fires up your DE's help center if everything goes well, the button to the right is recognised too (you have to configure it though ;-)). As a fancy plus, you'll get a nice OSD when you mute/unmute or change volume.

lspci output

00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Mobile PM965/GM965/GL960 Memory Controller Hub (rev 0c)
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile GM965/GL960 Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 0c)
00:02.1 Display controller: Intel Corporation Mobile GM965/GL960 Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 0c)
00:1a.0 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) USB UHCI Contoller #4 (rev 03)
00:1a.1 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) USB UHCI Controller #5 (rev 03)
00:1a.7 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) USB2 EHCI Controller #2 (rev 03)
00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) HD Audio Controller (rev 03)
00:1c.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) PCI Express Port 1 (rev 03)
00:1c.1 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) PCI Express Port 2 (rev 03)
00:1c.2 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) PCI Express Port 3 (rev 03)
00:1c.4 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) PCI Express Port 5 (rev 03)
00:1d.0 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) USB UHCI Controller #1 (rev 03)
00:1d.1 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) USB UHCI Controller #2 (rev 03)
00:1d.2 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) USB UHCI Controller #3 (rev 03)
00:1d.7 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) USB2 EHCI Controller #1 (rev 03)
00:1e.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801 Mobile PCI Bridge (rev f3)
00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corporation 82801HEM (ICH8M) LPC Interface Controller (rev 03)
00:1f.1 IDE interface: Intel Corporation 82801HBM/HEM (ICH8M/ICH8M-E) IDE Controller (rev 03)
00:1f.2 SATA controller: Intel Corporation 82801HBM/HEM (ICH8M/ICH8M-E) SATA AHCI Controller (rev 03)
02:04.0 CardBus bridge: Ricoh Co Ltd RL5c476 II (rev b6)
02:04.1 FireWire (IEEE 1394): Ricoh Co Ltd R5C832 IEEE 1394 Controller (rev 02)
10:00.0 Network controller: Intel Corporation PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Network Connection (rev 02)
18:00.0 Ethernet controller: Broadcom Corporation NetLink BCM5787M Gigabit Ethernet PCI Express (rev 02)

lsusb output

Bus 007 Device 001: ID 0000:0000  
Bus 006 Device 001: ID 0000:0000  
Bus 005 Device 001: ID 0000:0000  
Bus 004 Device 001: ID 0000:0000  
Bus 003 Device 003: ID 08ff:2580 AuthenTec, Inc. 
Bus 003 Device 001: ID 0000:0000  
Bus 002 Device 001: ID 0000:0000  
Bus 001 Device 003: ID 03f0:171d Hewlett-Packard 
Bus 001 Device 001: ID 0000:0000

The AuthenTec device is the fingerprint reader, the Hewlett-Packard one is the Bluetooth module.


People running kernel 2.6.23 on this laptop experience hard lockups when they close the laptop lid. 2.6.22 does not have this problem. It seems also 6710b owners are affected.

This is due to a fix in the ACPI video driver in 2.6.23; however, this messes things up for some hardware... You can fix it by putting this in rc.local:

echo 1 > /proc/acpi/video/*/DOS

More info on this 'fix' can be found on here. It seems this behaviour might be changed again with 2.6.24 (before 2.6.23 the value use to be 1 by default), but until it hits stable there is of course no certainty about that :-).

Useful links