Erro Log /pol/php/contura400c.csv Compaq Contura 400c with Red Hat Linux 6.2

Compaq Contura 400c

by Carlos Fernando Scheidecker Antunes    nando AT

I needed a notebook running Linux right away and I didn't have time to buy one so I have to use an old that I had available at that time. The notebook I am talking about is a Compaq Contura 400c. It is a basic 486 computer with a color display. The only two features that were upgraded in it are the memory (it has 16mb + 4mb standard = 20mb) and a 1.4Gb IBM hard drive. (The original hd gave up life as we know it.)

I've started by partitioning its HD by half and formating it with Ontrack's DiskGo. Then I've installed Windows 95 on the first partition and  PowerQuest's BootMagic. Since this notebook has a LinkSys PCMCIA card I've created a pcmcia boot image disk with RedHat's 6.2 rawrite utility localted at \dosutils on the install CD and perfomed a NFS installation from a Red Hat 6.2 Linux NFS server I have here at the office. So far so good. Once the Linux swap and native partitions were created (I've used 40mb for its swap) and Red Hat 6.2 was installed, BootMagic appears first when you boot the machine and you can select what OS you want. Please note that when installing Linux like I've done it is important to select to copy the boot image to the first sector of the partition, not the Master Boot Record (MBR).

Then, I've started to begin the X configuration and it was very difficult. It took me a few hours of research at the Internet, a few e-mails to some specialists, help from some folks around the globe and a little patience. Please note that Contura 400c has a Western Digital 512mb display card also known by Linux as wd90c24 or wd90c24a.

The system now has two OSs running just well. Off course, it is a very sluggish machine but it helped me on the road. I will be getting a brand new Notebook with better performance and resources and I am considering Winbook as well as another Compaq.

If you are new to Linux, there's a file under /etc/X11 called XF86Config that stores all the basic configuration for the X. You can edit it with mc, vi or just copy and past mine from this page. The mouse for this notebook is a PS/2 2 button equivalent. It is the standard trackball that comes with it that I am talking about.

I hope that it can help you or anyone you know that would like to give his or her 400c a ride with Linux.


Carlos Fernando Scheidecker Antunes - São Paulo Brazil July 2000.

So, let's just cut the bull and go right to the XF86Config file :

# Configuring X on a Contura 400c by Carlos Fernando Scheidecker Antunes.

Section "Files"

RgbPath    "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/rgb"

FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/misc/"
FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi/:unscaled"
FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/Type1/"
FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/Speedo/"
FontPath "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi/"

ModulePath "/usr/X11R6/lib/modules"


# Section "Module"
# This loads the module for the Joystick driver
# Load ""
# EndSection

Section "ServerFlags"

# NoTrapSignals

# DontZap

# DontZoom

# DisableVidModeExtension

# AllowNonLocalXvidtune

# DisableModInDev

# AllowNonLocalModInDev


Section "Keyboard"

Protocol    "Standard"

AutoRepeat    500 30

XkbKeymap "xfree86(us_intl)"


Section "Pointer"
Protocol "PS/2"
Device "/dev/mouse"

Emulate3Timeout 50


# Section "Xinput"
# SubSection "WacomStylus"
# Port "/dev/ttyS1"
# DeviceName "Wacom"
# EndSubSection
# SubSection "WacomCursor"
# Port "/dev/ttyS1"
# EndSubSection
# SubSection "WacomEraser"
# Port "/dev/ttyS1"
# EndSubSection
# SubSection "Elographics"
# Port "/dev/ttyS1"
# DeviceName "Elo"
# MinimumXPosition 300
# MaximumXPosition 3500
# MinimumYPosition 300
# MaximumYPosition 3500
# Screen 0
# UntouchDelay 10
# ReportDelay 10
# EndSubSection
# SubSection "Joystick"
# Port "/dev/joy0"
# DeviceName "Joystick"
# TimeOut 10
# MinimumXPosition 100
# MaximumXPosition 1300
# MinimumYPosition 100
# MaximumYPosition 1100
# # CenterX 700
# # CenterY 600
# Delta 20
# EndSubSection
# SubSection "Mouse"
# Port "/dev/mouse2"
# DeviceName "Second Mouse"
# Protocol "Logitech"
# EndSubSection
# EndSection

Section "Monitor"

Identifier "Primary Monitor"
VendorName "Unknown"
ModelName "Unknown"
HorizSync 20-70
VertRefresh 40-80
Modeline "640x480" 28.32 640 656 720 840 480 481 484 500 -hsync -vsync

Section "Device"
Identifier    "Primary Card"
VendorName    "Unknown"
BoardName    "WD 90C24A or 90C24A2 (laptop)"
Chipset    "wd90c24"
VideoRam    512
Clocks    28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 28.32 39.83

Section "Screen"
Driver "SVGA"
Device "Primary Card"
Monitor "Primary Monitor"
Subsection "Display"
Depth 8
Modes "640x480"
Subsection "Display"
Depth 15
Modes "640x480"
Subsection "Display"
Depth 16
Modes "640x480"
Subsection "Display"
Depth 24
Modes "640x480"
Subsection "Display"
Depth 32
Modes "640x480"

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