Linux on the Compaq Presario 700-716EA

Author: Rouvas Stathis,,
Date: 02 JUL 2002, updates: 05 JUL 2002, 22 JUL 2002
Original Setup: Hardware: Athlon 1.2GHz, Synaptics TouchPad, 20GD HDD, 256MB RAM, DVD-CD/RW, floppy, 14" TFT, S3 Twister K Graphics Card, SoundMax Intergrated Audio, USD, FireWire, parallel port, no serial port, RealTek RTL8139 NIC, Conexant Modem

Software: Windows XP

Linux Installed: SuSE 8.0 Pro

uname -a: Linux ios 2.4.18-4GB #1 Wed Mar 27 13:57:05 UTC 2002 i686 unknown

00:00.0 Host bridge: VIA Technologies, Inc. VT8363/8365 [KT133/KM133] (rev 80)
00:01.0 PCI bridge: VIA Technologies, Inc. VT8363/8365 [KT133/KM133 AGP]
00:07.0 ISA bridge: VIA Technologies, Inc. VT82C686 [Apollo Super South] (rev 42)
00:07.1 IDE interface: VIA Technologies, Inc. Bus Master IDE (rev 06)
00:07.2 USB Controller: VIA Technologies, Inc. UHCI USB (rev 1a)
00:07.4 Bridge: VIA Technologies, Inc. VT82C686 [Apollo Super ACPI] (rev 40)
00:07.5 Multimedia audio controller: VIA Technologies, Inc. AC97 Audio Controller (rev 50)
00:09.0 Communication controller: Conexant HSF 56k HSFi Modem (rev 01)
00:0a.0 CardBus bridge: Texas Instruments PCI1410 PC card Cardbus Controller (rev 01)
00:0b.0 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL-8139 (rev 10)
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: S3 Inc.: Unknown device 8d02 (rev 01)
First Impression: Base system installed without problems.
What Works: XFree.4.2.0 with S3 Savage card auto-detected and installed by Yast2 at 1024x768, mouse/touchpad (peculiarity: the extra navigational button is detected and a 3-button mouse is installed. However, the extra navigational button does not seem to so something. When a 3-button mouse is connected in the PS/2 port, it is automagically detected with the the 3rd button working OK. As an added bonus, the touchpad remains operational). CD, CD/RW, DVD (data, at least SuSE's DVD works OK). UDMA100 on HDD is also recognized. RealTek RTL8139 NIC is recognized and auto configured as 10/100 at boot.
What I haven't tested (yet): USB, FireWire, Parallel port, DVD (movie), PCMCIA
What doesn't work (in default install): Sound, Modem, ACPI, the extra touchpad button
What was made to work (so far): Sound (date: 02 JUL 2002)
Followed instructions found at, text is also attached below.
After installing new compiled kernel, Yast2 could not install sound card through the GUI. So in /etc/init.d/boot.local I added the following line:
modprobe via82cxxx_audio
Sound now works fine! I applied the SoundCompaq.patch (see below for newer versions) against the linux-2.4.18.SuSe tree.

ACPI (date: 22 JUL 2002), not 100% but acceptable for me. Read "The ACPI saga" below for more info.

The ACPI saga The main reason I would like to see ACPI working is to be able to control the temperature. In the current situation the fan is always on, even when then machine does nothing for a prolonged period of time, and the keyboard gets getting hotter and hotter. I'm sure that this can't be good for the health of the machine...
What follows is a log of what I did and the pitfalls I run into. If anyone has a better solution, please mail me.
Applying the acpi patches from to the /usr/src/linux tree (which is linked to /usr/src/linux-2.4.18) and recompiling was not possible as the whole process failed at "make modules". On the other hand, applying the same patches to the /usr/src/linux-2.4.18.SuSE tree failed. Digging into SuSE's sources I found out that SuSE had already buitl ACPI support with the supplied kernels, although the acpi version indicated 2001. Booting with "apm=off acpi=on" as kernel params and afterwards "modprobe -a ospm_ec ospm_system ospm_processor ospm_button ospm_ac_adapter ospm_battery" produced an acpi tree under /proc. Now, /proc/acpi/ac_adapter/0/status indicates whether the AC adpater is plugged or not, but nothing else seems to do something usefull. I have not yet found a way to stop the fan from running continually. Also, ospm_thermal fails to load.
Update : 22 JUL 2002
Temperature problem solved. Added "hdparm -S12 /dev/hda" at /etc/rc.d/boot.local and now the HDD spins down after approx. 1min. I've also added the above modprobe afterwards. Now fan actually stops if the machine sits idle. Also, on halting, it also power-offs.
Linux on a Compaq 1711T

The following is a copy from that was made at 2002 JUL 02. It is presented here only for completness.

Linux on the Compaq Presario 700 EA

Send all comments to Marc Berenschot, E-mail:

In january 2002 I bought a Compaq Presario 700 EA. It sells with Windows XP pre-installed...

Some Specs: Mobile AMD Duron 900 MHz (PowerNow!), VIA Chipset (KN133???), Twister K Graphics, Conexant Modem, 20 GB harddisk, 14.1" TFT, 128 MB Memory (Shared with the Video Card), Realtek Ethernet, pcmcia and USB. Watch out, there is no Serial-Port (I found that out after a few days...). Also the BIOS is not very configurable (read: almost not configurable), even PNP can not be turned off...

Since I had the Mandrake 8.1 CDs lying around that became my choice of distribution. Making a base install with these CDs was easy. After installation was complete rebooting the machine was a problem. During boot it rebooted again. And again... Problem was PNPBios. Booting with nobiospnp solved this. Unfortunately I found this out later, after adding another kernel (2.2.19-19mdk).

Mandrake installs kernel 2.4.8-26mdk. Because not everything was working correctly I upgraded to 2.4.17. This solved the nobiospnp problem.


This laptop is 100% ACPI. And Linux is not... So some things are not possible yet (automatic throttling, responding to events, hybernate). Battery Lifetime is short now (I do not turn off disks using hdparm).
Update: I have installed kernel 2.4.18 with acpi-20020308-2.4.17.diff. Now batteries and ac-adaptor are recognised and you can see the status. Throttling is still not possible. I did not try sleep and hybernate yet.
Another Update: I now have acpi-20020404. But I could not find any differences yet. I now know how to throttle the machine. This might have been possible with the previous patch, but I did not know how to do it. I have not yet used the laptop for a longer time with this patch, so I don't know what it does with the battery-life. I hope it is better now. Events are still not detected
UPDATE (26 April): I found a patch on the ACPI mailing-list for the presario 711 FR that should make events working. I tried it and it does! So now it is possible to use acpid. And hopefully the machine will use less power since it is spending more time in the C2 state. The patch is from Juliusz Chroboczek and you can download it on the bottom of this page. His page is here.
Currently I am running the 20020503 acpi-patch with the kacpid.patch. It is working very well now. Battery lifetime looks better and it doesn't feel as hot as before. The fan is off now for most of the time (used to be running at full speed).

Since it is a FAQ here is how to apply a patch:
Go to the source directory (cd /usr/src/linux)
Do: patch -p1 < /path/to/patch
Then recompile your kernel (see files and links below on how to do that)

No Problems

The soundcard has been a problem for a long time. David Gardner sent me a patch from Santiago Nullo for kernel 2.4.18 and now it works!
The Network Card is a Realtek RTL8193. It was running immediately after install, no problems encountered with it.
The modem is offcourse a winmodem (Conexant HSF). But with the driver from (hsflinmodem- I could get it to work. So thanks to Marc Boucher.
Framebuffer device is working properly. So X is running, but without any acceleration. I have to check which version of X I am using. It is possible that XFree 4 is already supporting this card. Update: And that is true, so now it is running accelerated on Xfree 4 and there is no problem with the graphics.
It looks like the PCMCIA adapter is running. Inserting cards is detected. I did not install any PCMCIA card since I don't have them.
USB is recognised and modules are inserted. I have tried an Intellimouse and it works. Even the Scroll-wheel works without a problem.
Touchpad is working fine. It also has an extra button with functionality comparable to a scrollwheel. The extra button does not work and I am not yet trying to get is to work since I don't use it anyway. Same thing for the send-e-mail-key and friends.
CD-Rom player and diskdrive work correctly. Also the Harddisk works fine and it uses UDMA-100.

Files and links

Sound patch: SoundCompaq.patch
Kernel Config file: config.2.4.18
Acpi event patch:kacpid.patch
The acpi patches can be found at sourceforge
The Linux Kernel HOWTO (It is a question I very often get and it is taking to much time to answer):


At this moment this laptop is not the Ultimate Linux Laptop. But I think this goes for all ACPI laptops. The biggest problem in my opinion is the short battery life (I think aprox. 1.5 hours). But progress with ACPI is very good, they are currently releasing patches very quick. So hopfully in a few months...