Monday, November 16, 2009

HOWTO Install Ubuntu Netbook Remix 9.10 from CD & Get Wireless Working

This is the second part of a HOWTO - the first part was installing Ubuntu Netbook Remix 9.10 from a USB stick; this part is for installing from an install CD. As mentioned in the last blog, there are slight differences between these two.

How to install Ubuntu Netbook Remix 9.10 on the Lenovo S10-2 Ideapad Netbook from a CD and get the Broadcom wireless to work.

Author: Ridzwan Abdullah (ridz1a_AT_yahoo_DOT_com)
Last Updated: 14th November 2009

This howto is for guiding users who wants to install the Ubuntu Netbook Remix 9.10 (codenamed Karmic Kaola) onto their Lenovo S10-2 Ideapad netbook as well as getting the wireless on the netbook to work.

This version of the howto assumes you have a boot CD containg the Ubuntu Netbook Remix 9.10 (henceforth referred to as UNR). For those who does not have this item, visit the Ubuntu web site ( and download the iso image of the UNR, and then burn the image to a CD-ROM. If you have an external CD or DVD drive for your S10-2 netbook, then this CD-ROM is all you need for installation.

This version also assumes that UNR is the only OS you plan to install on your S10-2 netbook. If you have just installed a new (blank) hard disk into your netbook, then you are set to start installing the UNR. If an OS is already present on the hard disk in your netbook (for example, Windows XP Home) and you want the ability to dual-boot, then you need to refer to dual-boot version of this howto. Should you wish to wipe the current OS from the hard disk before installation, then you need make sure to delete all partitions and reset the MBR on the hard disk. Use an available PC to do this - there are lots of free utilities that allow you to do this. You can also wipe the hard disk using the 'cfdisk' or 'fdisk' utility found on the UNR - run the "Live CD" to access this utility.

One last assumption is that internet connection is via wireless NOT through a wired LAN. The majority of people who buys a netbook is for reason of portability, i.e., not tied down to a wired LAN for internet connection

Here are the steps required to install the Ubuntu Netbook Remix 9.10:

1) Make sure that the S10-2 netbook is powered off. Unplug any ethernet network cable from the netbook (this howto assumes that you do not have internet access via an LAN but through a wireless AP). Connect the external CD/DVD drive to the netbook. Then power on the netbook.

2) Press the F12 key during boot (when the Lenovo screen appears) and after a while, the Boot Manager screen will appear. Now you can open the tray of your CD/DVD drive and insert the UNR 9.10 CD. Close the tray and wait until the light on the CD/DVD drive stops blinking. On the Boot Manager, select menu item 3 USB CDROM and press Enter. The netbook should boot from the CD - if it does not and tries to boot from the network (PXE), then perform a restart by pressing the Ctrl+Alt+Del keys on the netbook. During boot, press the F12 key again to enter the Boot Manager where you select item 3 and then press Enter - the netbook should now boot from the CD. Note that this is a pecularity of the S10-2 netbook with an external CD/DVD drive.

3) The first screen that appears is where you choose the installation language. Select one and press Enter. On the Ubuntu Installation Menu that appears next, select the item "Install Ubuntu Netbook Remix" and press Enter. The installer will then start loading - wait until the first installation screen (the Welcome screen) appears. Do not be alarmed if you see a blank screen - it is still loading.

4) Follow the 6 steps as shown on the screen and set your choices - Language, Location, Keyboard layout, Prepare disk space, enter personal information and lastly, confirm the install using the information that you have provided. When you press the "Install" button on step 6, the installer will begin the process on actually installing UNR on your netbook. With no LAN access to the internet from the netbook, the whole installation will be completed within 9 minutes typically. When completed, a message box will appear to this effect with a "Restart Now" button which you need to click.

5) The CD will be ejected after pressing the "Restart Now" button. DO NOT REMOVE the CD from the tray - just shut the tray and press Enter. During reboot, do not press any key and the netbook will start from the hard disk. The netbook will now start the newly installed UNR. The GRUB loading message will appear briefly and then UNR will start loading. If you have selected starting with a password during install, the the Login screen will appear. Enter you password and click OK. If you had selected automatic startup during install, then the Login screen will be skipped. The UNR desktop will now appear to the accompaniment of the "startup sound" - indicating that the sound hardware on the Lenovo S10-2 netbook is fully working. At this point, there is no internet access. In fact, there is no network connection whatsoever and this can be verified if you hover the cursor over the network icon (between the speaker icon and the battery icon), a message saying "No network connection" will appear. To get the wireless network to work, we need to install some software packages manually. Ubuntu's philosophy forbade them from doing this automatically - as a result, it just makes things harder for the average user.

6) Now you need to run the Synaptic Package Manager to install the packages necessary to get wireless working. Click on 'System' (at the bottom of the left-hand pane on the screen) and scroll down the right-hand pane to the "Administration" section. The Synaptic Package Manager is located here - click once on the icon. A password prompt will appear (running Synaptic requires administrative privilege) - enter your password (the one you specified during installation) ans press OK. Synaptic will launch - read the quick introduction that appears if you wish to, then press the 'Close' button. Synaptic is now running.

7) Click on 'Settings' on Synaptic's menu bar and then on the 'Repositories' item. The Software Sources dialog box will appear. Click on the square box next to 'Cdrom with Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic Kaola' item at the bottom of the dialog box to enable this item (a checkmark will appear). Click the 'Close' button. A message will appear to notify that you have to perform a reload - press 'Close' to dismiss this message.

8) On the bottom left hand pane of Synaptic, locate and click on the 'Origin' button. Then click on the 'Reload' icon located below Synaptic's menu bar on top of the screen. A message box will briefly appear saying it is downloading package information but since there is no internet connection it will abort with an error message. Ignore this error and dismiss the message by clicking on the 'Close' button. The purpose of this reload is to tell Synaptic to look into the CD-ROM for packages. You should now see 2 additional items listed on the top left pane - these are the repositories on the CD-ROM or USB stick. Click on the last item - 'Ubuntu-Netbook-Remix 9.10_Karmic Kaola_-Release i386 (20091028.4)/restricted'. The right hand pane should now show 2 items 'bcmwl-kernel-source' and 'sl-modem-daemon'. The item that we need to install to get wireless networking working is the 'bcmwl-kernel-source' - so click on the square box and select 'Mark for installation' on the list box that appears. Another message box will appear and list 3 other packages (fakeroot, dkms and patch) that needs to be installed before 'bcmwl-kernel-source' will work. Click on the 'Mark' button - the message box will close. Then click on the 'Apply' icon and a confirmation box will appear - click on the 'Apply' button. A message box will appear saying it is downloading the files to be installed - not via the internet but from the CD-ROM. The files will then be installed as shown on another message box. When conpleted and "Changes applied" message will appear - click the 'Close' button. Then close the Synaptic Package Manager (click on the X in the tab on top of the screen).

9) Restart the netbook by clicking on the top right-most icon and selecting 'Restart...'. Then Click the 'Restart' button on the dialog box that appears and the netbook will restart. Log in and at the UNR desktop, click the network icon and your wireless AP (along with other AP's within range) will appear in a list. To connect to the internet via the wireless just click on your AP, enter the password (if authentication is required) and you will be connected. You can eject and remove the CD-ROM at this point if you wish.

10) There will be updates available - use the Update Manager to apply the updates. The update manager can be found in 'System' section. Click on the item and when Update Manager screen appears, click the 'Check' button. Enter your password and the process will start. Update manager will refresh the package information from the remote repositories. Once this is finished a list of available updates will be shown. Click on the 'Install Updates' button to start the actual downloading and installation of updates. This may take a while.

11) The Lenovo S10-2 Ideapad netbook is now ready for use, either on your desk at home or on the road. Enjoy!


I should mention here that the method above have been tested extensively by me and should work on the Lenovo S10-2 netbook.

There will be another 2 HOWTO's to come on installing the UNR 9.10 on the S10-2 netbook and getting the wireless to work - however, these 2 differs from the first 2 in that internet access is present via a LAN connection (using the ethernet port on the netbook) during installation. There ARE differences and one of them is critical in getting the wireless to work. So stay tuned if you wish to install UNR using this method.

No comments:

Post a Comment