Friday, August 5, 2011

OpenSuse 11.4 on Dell Inspiron Duo 1090

My Wife is a teacher and wanted "one of these small PC thingies" to carry around all day.

So I bought her a Dell Inspiron Duo, because she also wants "one of those touch pad thingies" ;-)

Since all of our household PCs run OpenSuse the Netbook had to have it too. I was tempted to go for a more touch friendly Linux distro like Meego but decided against it. The differences would have been to confusing for the user. Btw. I will try to get a refund or at least store credit for the unused/unwanted Windows that came with the Netbook. I will Post here how that goes.

The Inspiron Duo has no DVD Drive so I installed using an external USB Drive (had no 4GB+ Stick). The installation went without fuzz ( Follow Instructions on: ):

  • Download the install ISO
  • Patch the iso for USB Booting:
    # zypper in syslinux
    # isohybrid openSUSE-11.4-DVD-x86_64.iso
  • Copy the ISO to the drive
    # sudo zypper in ddrescue
    # sudo umount /dev/sdXY
    # dd_rescue openSUSE-11.4-KDE-LiveCD-x86_64.iso /dev/sdXY
  • Boot from the USB drive
  • Install
Pretty much everything worked out of the Box. Except for:

  • The Touch screen -> Works after installing Drivers
  • The Microphone (Speakers work) -> Works after setting Sound Module Options
  • The KDE Networkmanager -> Works after upgrading KDE  (WLAN itself work out of the Box)

Touch Screen
For the Touch Screen I installed the Driver provided by the Manufacturer:
  • Download 64Bit from
  • Extract the Tarball and run the setup sh
    #tar xvzf eGalaxTouch-3.05.5025-64b-k26.tar.gz 
    #sudo sh
  • Choose USB (3) when asked
  • Then copy the created config file to /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d
    sudo cp /usr/local/eGalaxTouch64/Rule/50-egalax.con /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/
  • Reboot. Then run the eGalacTouch tool
    #sudo zypper in libpng12-0 (needed by eGalaxTouch)
  • Calibrate in eGalaxTouch -> Tool -> 4Pts Cal
Hints: If you read other Forums ( link link ) you might see a need for putting an usbhid.quirks option into grub config. This is apparently not necessary with OpenSuse 11.4 (+updates).


Here YaST correctly identified snd-hda-intel as the right module. Unfortunately this is not enough.
After some trying around I figured out two things. I had a conflicting "options snd slots=snd-hda-intel..." line in a file in /etc/modprobe.d (all files are read not just .config ones) and the alsa-firmare was not installed.
zypper in alsa-firmware
My /etc/modprobe.d/50-sound.conf after editing
alias snd-card-0 snd-hda-intel
options snd_hda_intel model=ideapad

KDE Networkmanager

This is actually not related to the Inspiron DUO. But since the DUO has WLAN only I had to have it fixed.

The KDE Networkmanager that comes with OpenSuse 11.4 (+Updates) seems to broken for some Intel WLAN Cards. I have the same problem with Dell E6500. The Networkmanager will simply drop connections with WPA2 after a few Minutes/Seconds. For no good reason.

My fix: Upgrade to KDE 4.7 (see  )
sudo zypper ar --check --refresh KDE47-Core
sudo zypper ar --check --refresh KDE47-Extra
sudo zypper dup


I installed Chrome as the default Browser. It simply behaves better that Firefox on low Power Devices.
The chromeTouch Extension enables Touch Pad like scrolling.

I use Kvkbd as an on Screen (touch) keyboard

From the OpenSuse Education Projects ( ) I installed:


m00n said...

does multitouch and screen rotation works ?

Lorenzo said...

Have you tried Plasma Active [1]? Is there a way to activate it only when it's in tablet mode? Have you tried to write on the screen with a capacitive stylus pen? I'm planning to buy it but I'm waiting for your reply to decide ;-)


Chris said...


sorry I was busy rebuilding (IRL) my Home Office.


No to my knowledge it does not work. At least I could not get it to work with OpenSuse 11.4

*Plasma Active
Sounds nice. But KDE Software quality is not so good lately. So I will probably not Install it on my Wifes Netbook until it matures a bit.

*Stylus Pen
I did not try it. But Tapping with Fingernails or pens works. So I guess it should work. The problem I see that this is a consumer grade touch screen. So using it with a pen might reduce the Life time.

Since the device is primarily used by my Wife my tinkering time for it is reduced. My next step was to try Opensuse 12.1 on it. But I am currently way too busy for the OS12.1 Beta.

Praise said...

Hi, I have been using OpenSUSE 11.4 and 12.1 on my Inspiron Duo for two weeks now and I have found some differencies from yours.

* Vendor drivers did not work on 11.4. I did not bother to try them on 12.1 as I got the touchscreen working with ' usbhid.quirks=0x0eef:0x725e:0x40 ' added as boot option.

* My Wireless NIC is different, so no problem (it's AR9285 Wireless Network Adapter from atheros, and it uses ath9k module).

* I use a stylus pen on the screen. As it is capacitive, its touch is very soft and does not cause risks to the touchscreen.

Anyway I have two real problems: I can't get login working with a virtual keyboard, and I can't unlock the screen saver with a virtual keyboard. That is a bit annoying.
Have you got any ideas to solve these?

Everything works as expected, but I have not tried Plasma Active yet.

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