What to do if a Linux distro is incompatible with hardware?

Terafall May 26, 2012

I really like Ubuntu, but my laptop is incompatible. Is there any way to make it compatible or at least problem free?

Acer Aspire 4755G, Intel i5, Nvidia GeForce GT 540M

  1. Sachin Kanchan
    June 6, 2012 at 7:01 am

    the simple path to choose when you encounter such a problem is to move on to another linux distro if the previous one is not compatible...there are many many distros which you can try and check if they work on your system...

    you must also be sure as what are your requirements or what do you need to work with so that you can understand which linux OS can be of use to you;.....see this

    but if you are really into linux you can do a little research or a background check to see which hardware package is best suited for your needs and like which can run almost any linux available out there


    to check what hardwares a distro is compatible with go to this site:-

    http://www.linux-drivers.org/ and choose your OS
    or this one

    • Sachin Kanchan
      June 6, 2012 at 7:02 am

      i see your problem has been solved but i wud be thankful to know if my post was of any use or help to you

  2. Laga Mahesa
    May 26, 2012 at 7:20 pm

    Start here:

    [SOLVED] Brand New Computer. I bought myself a new Acer Aspire 4755G-2432G75Mn notebook with a pre-installed Linux OS.

    Useful information in this thread too, where the guy has the same laptop, and starts off by stating "I just installed Ubuntu 11.10 in my laptop (ACER ASPIRE 4755G) using a USB Pendrive." :

    Dual Boot Menu Not Showing


    May 26, 2012 at 5:59 pm

    Hello, your laptop has more than enough resources to run any linux distro, specially ubuntu, handily. Most times issues are caused by ethernet and wireless drivers. This problem is easily fix by visiting the ubuntu forums where I am sure, somebody else has installed the distro in a laptop with same/similar specs as yours.

  4. alexander
    May 26, 2012 at 7:49 am

    the short answer is, your laptop is completely capable of running ubuntu.
    the long answer is, which hardware drivers for your system, isnt included in the standard kernel. (from experience i'd say its probably the lan and w-lan drivers thats missing)next step would be to compile a kernel with the drivers you're missing, and replacing the original ubuntu kernel.
    while you're at it, remove drivers and other fun stuffs you have absolutely no use for, and get a more resource efficient operative system, and a faster computer.

    • Jimbo99
      June 5, 2012 at 5:03 pm

      How do you know your hardware is not compatible? Did you try it? Look it up on the web? Review other's comments regarding their success or failure?

      That hardware looks pretty standard. I can't see it being incompatible. As someone stated the most probable component in your system that might suffer a lack of drivers is the wireless card. But that means very little unless you try.

      You should download an Ubuntu Live CD, burn it to a blank CD, and boot with it. Then check to see if your wireless is working. If it is, then there's no need to worry.

      Most likely the driver is available via the additional drivers in Ubuntu. Ubuntu provides a feature for identifying components that need a proprietary driver. It is easily found. Also, there's a way to use the Windows based drivers, if necessary. So, your options would still be wide open in the event that the wireless card isn't enabled by default.

      Contrary to what someone else said in this thread, the next step is not to compile a custom kernel. You should NEVER compile a custom kernel. Just because you can doesn't mean you should. Besides it is a fools errand that will cause you no end of pain as things are updated down the road.

      Please, everyone stop recommending that users compile programs. It is not necessary and it only weakens the will of those trying to adopt Linux.

      • alexander
        June 5, 2012 at 5:19 pm

        when adding to, or removing drivers from the linux kernel, you are in fact recompiling a new kernel, no matter if you do it manually, or use an automated tool.

        the main feature of linux, and the main drawpoint for everyone using it is the ability to shape the kernel to your specific needs, something other operative systems prevents you from doing.

        if his lan and w-lan drivers aren't present on the original bootable image, he will not be able to use the automated tools to incorporate the drivers he needs, as he will have no network connection. he isn't gonna solve any problems unless he adds in the drivers he need to the kernel on the live cd.

        oh, and a the linux kernel changes a whole lot during use, as you customize your linux experience to suit your needs, i'd be willing to bet that if you're actually using linux you are running a custom kernel as well. even ubuntu comes in several flavors each with its own kernel (some of them with more than one kernel to choose at installation, and others with a library of kernels in the repository.

        reccomending people to use linux, and never change the kernel is like reccomending them to always order in their food because it is to complicated to cook it yourself, even though you get better results.

        • Jimbo99
          June 5, 2012 at 5:24 pm

          This is not true. They become kernel loadable modules. Adding a kernel loadable module is a RARE thing in Linux. Most everything is already included.

          So, please, everyone stop telling people to compile a custom kernel. it does an injustice to Linux and all that we have hoped to accomplish.

        • alexander
          June 5, 2012 at 5:30 pm

          i believe you are refering to the base kernel.

          quote: Some people think of LKMs as outside of the kernel. They speak of LKMs communicating with the kernel. This is a mistake; LKMs (when loaded) are very much part of the kernel. The correct term for the part of the kernel that is bound into the image that you boot, i.e. all of the kernel except the LKMs, is "base kernel." LKMs communicate with the base kernel.

  5. Bruce Epper
    May 26, 2012 at 1:18 am

    In what way is it incompatible? From the specs of the laptop, I don't see anything there that would cause problems running Ubuntu? Just booting a LiveCD should work without issue. Are you getting some kind of error messages? Errors showing up in logs?

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