Fedora Core 6 on an IBM/Lenovo ThinkPad T60p

Hardware Specs

Model 200793U
Intel Core Duo T2600 CPU (2.16GHz Dual-Core Yonah)
2GB 667MHz DDR2 memory (2x 1GB SoDIMMs)
100GB 7200rpm SATA disk
15" UXGA (1600x1200) "IPS FlexView" display (matte coating)
ATI FireGL v5200 256MB GDDR3 video card
DVD +/- DL DVD burner
Intel 82573L Gigabit ethernet card
Intel 3945 WLAN card

Installation Notes

I installed Fedora Core 6 from a DVD.  I installed FC6 with an ext3 root partition and SELinux turned off by booting the install with "install selinux=0" at the boot command line.  After the installation was complete, be sure to run "yum -y update" as root.

Post-Install Configuration

After installing FC6 and updating, I followed most of the instructions on this page.  This is really useful later for installing things like the ATI binary driver, mplayer, etc.

Working Hardware


Works with the regular kernel (in FC6, there is no longer an SMP and a non-SMP kernel).  Currently running 2.6.18-1.2849.fc6.


Worked out of the box.  Running "hdparm -t /dev/sda" shows about 50 MB/s reads, not bad for a laptop.  Model number HTS721010G9SA00 is a Hitachi Travelstar 7K100 disk.

Video Card and Display

I ran "yum install kmod-fglrx" to install the proprietary ATI driver.  Select the fglrx driver in the Display control panel and set the resolution and color depth.  After some consternation, I discovered that after the install, you need to link /usr/lib/libGL.so.1.2 to /usr/lib/ati-fglrx/libGL.so.1.2 to get X to use the fglx GL driver instead of the Mesa one.  Here is my current xorg.conf file.

The video card seems very fast.  The FireGL v5200 is based on the X1600 -- I'm not sure what the differences are, but the v5200 is a "business" card and the X1600 is more of a "gamer" card.  However, running the atunnel screensaver on this machine had similar results to running it on an Apple MacBook Pro (running Ubuntu).  The T60p was rendering at 1600x1200, and the MacBook Pro was rendering at 1440x900 so I would expect some slowdown (1600x1200 is about 48% more pixels).  In any case, I havn't run any games on it, but it seems fast to me.

DVD Burner

I have used this to burn CDs, but have not burned any DVDs with it yet.  Running "hdparm -I /dev/dvd" reports
ATAPI CD-ROM, with removable media
        Model Number:       MATSHITADVD-RAM UJ-842                 
        Serial Number:     
        Firmware Revision:  RB01   
        Likely used CD-ROM ATAPI-1
        DRQ response: 50us.
        Packet size: 12 bytes
        LBA, IORDY(can be disabled)
        DMA: sdma0 sdma1 sdma2 mdma0 mdma1 mdma2 udma0 udma1 *udma2
             Cycle time: min=120ns recommended=120ns
        PIO: pio0 pio1 pio2 pio3 pio4
             Cycle time: no flow control=240ns  IORDY flow control=120ns
HW reset results:
        CBLID- below Vih
        Device num = 1


Worked out of the box (including gigabit connections).  Identifies itself as an "Intel Corporation 82573L Gigabit Ethernet Controller".

3945 Wireless LAN card

Did not appear to "just work" though I have not tried to configure it or use it.


Appears to work, not using it.


Worked out of the box.  Reports itself as a "Intel Corporation 82801G (ICH7 Family) High Definition Audio Controller" works using the ALSA drivers, defines it self as "Intel HD Audio" in some places.  I had to fiddle with alsamixer to unmute the "front" channel to get the speakers working.  Be careful to not disable the modem in the BIOS, or the sound card will stop working.

Power Management

Seems to work out of the box.  Hitting "Fn-F4" suspends, and the machine resumes with the X screensaver locked (so you have to type your password to unlock).  Everything seems to come back fine.  This also works when closing the lid.

On-Screen Display

Installed tpb by running "yum install tpb".  After that, you can run "tpb --osd=on" and then when you hit "Fn-Home" to change screen brightness, a graphical slider will overlay on the screen.  Not exactly critical, but pretty cool.  Tpb will also allow you to launch a program when you hit the "ThinkVantage" button, and control volume with the volume buttons.



Overall Opinion

All-in-all, I really like this machine.  Right before this, I picked up a 15" MacBook Pro and installed Ubuntu on it to dual-boot with OSX.  That was a nice machine, but the lack of a two-button mouse and the excessive heat was really bad.  I ended up returning that machine and getting the T60p instead.  The MBP display is definately brighter (rated at 300 nits (candella/m2) vs. the ThinkPad at 200 nits), but the ThinkPad still has a good, bright display.  When you put the two next to eachother, the Apple is clearly brighter.

The ThinkPad is definately sturdily built.  I have had a number of "consumer" laptops and this one puts those to shame in build quality.  The screen hinges are metal and appear to be part of the internal chassis.  The handrests are the only thing that's not made of metal, and those don't flex hardly at all.  The rest of the machine has no flex, and I can pick it up by the front corners and not worry about snapping it in half or anything.

This machine is very fast.  Running the build system for my job it's nearly twice as fast as my 3.2GHz HyperThreaded P4 desktop at work.  The CPU is user-upgradable (will require a BIOS update) to the Merom (Core 2 Duo) CPUs.  I plan on upgrading it to a T7600 or something in 4-6 months when those CPUs have come down in price.  With 2GB of memory, I can run Oracle 10g (XE), my entire dev environment (IntelliJ IDEA, JBoss, etc) and it's still fast.  It gets pretty warm after running a lot of GPU and CPU intensive things for a while (run a few copies of fgl_glxgears for a while) but it's still nowhere near as hot as the MacBook Pro.