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New Workstation Arrived

My new Sun Ultra 20 M2 workstation arrived yesterday. It came preinstalled with Solaris, which as awesome as it is, I am not able to use. I need to be able to run VMware Server for my work, which means Linux, not Solaris (at least right now). I booted Solaris and poked around a bit just to satisfy curiosity, and then popped in my OpenSUSE 10.2 DVD and started the install.

I’m not running yet, so you can guess that there were some challenges. The workstation came with an NVidia Quadro FX 560 dual head video card. James has the same box, and he managed to install SLED 10 without any challenges, so I figured OpenSUSE 10.2 would be no problem. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case. I started with the 32 bit version. The install went fine, but then at first boot, Xwindows started and showed a blank screen. I thought I maybe needed to use the other port on the Quadro FX 560. That didn’t work.

Then I looked at the supported OS list for the Ultra 20, and it listed SLES 9 SP3 and very explicitly stated 64-bit version only. I decided to try the 64-bit version even though I had had some stability issues with it previously. I repeated the install, with the same result. Then just because James had gotten SLED 10 working I tried the 64-bit version of that. It worked fine, and the video was nice and smooth in Xwindows. I scratched my head for a while, and then came to the conclusion that the proprietary NVidia X driver was at fault. That driver is installed automatically in SLED, but in OpenSUSE it isn’t because it’s proprietary.

I’m retrying the OpenSUSE 10.2 64-bit install right now and at the end I’m going to manually install the proprietary NVidia driver and see if that works.

Categories: Linux, Sun Solaris
  1. Jeff Flowers
    2007-02-08 at 14:42

    I’m glad to read that you received your workstation. I was wondering if you could tell me a few things.

    1. How long did it take Sun to get it to you?
    2. How would you rate the build quality of your machine?

    By the way, this blog post is meaningless without pictures! :)

    Jeffrey Scott Flowers!

  2. 2007-02-08 at 16:32


    1: It took far too damn long. I ordered it with an extra 2GB kit of RAM for a total of 3GB, and it took about three and a half weeks to get here.
    2: The quality of the machine is very solid and clean. One complaint: They didn’t install the DVD-RW I ordered, they just shipped it separate in another box with the keyboard and mouse and assorted junk. Also, I got three massive power cables, despite the fact that the machine has a single power supply.

    I think I might put more stuff with some photos in another post tomorrow.

  3. 2007-04-25 at 04:36

    Thank You

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