Thursday, September 8, 2011

Enlightening your Dell Duo with Linux

I recently set out to get a new tablet/netbook combo. After reading many reviews about different models I settled on a Dell Inspiron Duo. One thing you will find most all of the Inspiron reviews have in common is that they mention the touch software layer running on Windows 7 is slow. If I said this surprised me it would be a lie. With this in mind I set out to get the Enlightenment desktop running on this device in a cool way. Below is a video of the Enlightenment desktop via Bodhi Linux 1.2.0 running on my Dell Duo:

If you'd like to create a similar setup on your own Duo simply install Bodhi (or any distro with a current E build) and then follow the instructions I detailed here. Then under your key bindings add detection for the screen changing states. Under Action select Launch->Command in the Action Params put the command:

enlightenment_remote -default-profile-set ProfileName

Note when selecting the profile name it needs to be the exact name that is listed for that profile in your ~/.e/e/config directory. Otherwise Enlightenment will crash in a bad way.

Have any questions or comments feel free to drop a message below.

~Jeff Hoogland


  1. Here we have an ARM compatible OS, the whole stack (including proprietary shitty legacy bits like Flash), but your portable device doesn't have an ARM processor.

    My e4200 was to have an ARM processor (or so were the rumors) . . thanks Dell. =\

    - Jon

  2. Nice try Jeff though you didn't show the comparison between win 7 and your baby Bodhi, to compare the difference in speed, Now go back to the Bodhi forum and sort out the problems that need to be sorted out with Bodhi

  3. I never even used Win7 on the Dell, never planned to. You can find countless videos/reviews online showing/talking bout it running slowly. That is not the topic of this post.

  4. I ran Windows on my Duo for several months. It totally sucked. Explorer wouldn't accept any touch commands until a page finished drawing. And if it had graphics, that took forever. Even Firefox was slow on it.

    The straw that broke the camel's back was when it got a virus and wouldn't run anymore.

    I tentatively upgraded to F15, first trying the Live ISO on USB. It was faster than Windows. Then I did a complete F15 install, totally removing Windows.

    End result, it absolutely flies. I can't believe how much faster Fedora is than Windows. I am very, very happy with my Duo now that its running Linux.

  5. Any luck getting it to work with the dock at all? The ethernet port does not work unless the duo is docked then booted. Any ideas would be much appreciated.

  6. Did you have to do anything to get the Broadcom CrystalHD Decoder going or did it work OOTB? Also interested in hearing about the dock.

  7. I have not touched the Broadcom chip or the dock to be honest. Unit did everything I wanted out of it without either of these.

  8. I set up on dell duo but all of the enlightenment settings disaapered on a crash and wouldn't return and could not get the sound to work in the dock in Ubuntu you just select the dock the first time and then it recognizes it in the future. I Liked the way bohdi worked better accept for those two issues any suggestion on the sound dock it is seen but wont send sound through it. goggled it for two days now and not finding solutions looking fr direction.

  9. prmdc - Support of this level is a bit beyond the scope of this comment section. Please open a support request on our user forums.