Dell Vostro 3700, Ubuntu 9.10 and Window$ 7

Posted on Monday, April 26, 2010


Recently Inphina ordered Dell Vostros for all the colleagues. Since we have a bias towards Linux, the next logical step was to set up a dual-boot system and get Window$ 7 and Ubuntu co-exist as a dual-boot system.

  • So the starting point was that Window$ 7 was installed on the clean Vostro 3700. Actually, the vostro came preloaded with XP and first I had to install 7 from the DVD that was provided. That took like 30 minutes.
  • Next I burnt a cd for Ubuntu 9.10 as an image from the Ubuntu site.
  • Put the CD in  and restart the system. Be sure to boot from the CD.
  • Ubuntu powers up and gives you the option to install or play with Ubuntu. We have done Ubuntu for the past 4 years now so we straight went for the install option.
  • The coool Ubuntu interface asks a few standard questions and then in a couple of following screens, shows the current disk structure that you have. For most cases it would show 2 partitions, 1 for win 7 admin space which is usually a < 100 MB partition ( Be sure NOT to touch this one), 2nd is the ntfs partition in which you would like to install ubuntu.
  • Select the option which says that you would want both the OS to coexist. Do not hit the manual partition radio button. With the mouse allocate as much space as you would like to, to the Ubuntu partition.
  • Hit next and confirm. Ubuntu would take care of the rest including allocating space for swap.

And, you are done, both the systems now exist in harmony. This is much easier than the earlier days of installing ubuntu along with Window$

Once you load up Ubuntu, you are likely to face a few driver issues. For example, the NVIDIA driver is not installed by default and neither was the Broadcom STA wireless card driver. So in a nutshell, I was not able to connect to the internet using wifi and the screen resolution looked really a pity with 800×600.

So i started hunting for these drivers and it was not easy. The easy part was to just hit the System-> Administration -> Hardware Drivers and lo… the missing drivers were right there.

I just hit activate on them and rest was easy. The drivers were downloaded and installed and after a restart the machine was shining on wifi access and 1600×900 resolution. Btw, if you can wait for a few days then the new version of Ubuntu (10.04) is just round the corner.
Ubuntu: For Desktops, Servers, Netbooks and in the cloud

Posted in: linux