Archive for November, 2022

Linux on the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i

Monday, November 21st, 2022

While looking for mandatory small and preferably cheap notebooks, O stumbled upon the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i, and the post Linux on Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i tablet – good enough!

I’ve got one, and to make the long story short: Yes, but not good enough for Minecraft, apparently. While people seem to manage running Minecraft on a N5030 CPU with a Intel UHD 605 with some 20-30 fps; I only get 0. Well, that’s what Minecraft says, it’s less than 1 anyway. And no, it’s not like the hardware can’t do more: there are videos out there that show Minecraft  (on lowest details) running at some 30 fps on exactly that processor/GPU.

First off, installation. I tried both Debian 11, and Ubuntu 22.04. Install is not possible from the SD-Card, only from USB. Also, the bootloader of the Windows 10 that was on it refused to run any third-party software. Useless. But you get to the BIOS with Fn-F2, or to the Boot-selector with Fn-F12, where you can choose to boot from USB.

Both distributions kinda work, and both have the same initial problems. The screen is sideways, which you can fix with fbcon=rotate:1 in grub for the Debian text-mode install, but the Ubuntu-installer will ignore (later I found out what you really have to do: video=DSI-1:panel_orientation=right_side_up This incidentally also fixes plymouth). I copied the grub-config from Matīss Treinis blogpost above, and now it reads:

GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="quiet splash fbcon=rotate:1 i915.enable_dpcd_backlight=1 acpi_osi=\"!Windows 2015\" acpi_backlight=video video=DSI-1:panel_orientation=right_side_up"

Also, on Ubuntu I followed his advice to copy ~/.config/monitors.xml to /var/lib/gdm3/.config which fixes the rotation for GDM3.

The second problem I haven’t solved so far. The Wifi tends to stall, without disconnecting. It may or may not come up again, but it will immediately come up again upon “nmcli radio wifi off; nmcli radio wifi on“. This may be a problem with my AP, but as a restart on the IdeaPad makes it work immediately again, I’d blame that one. There’s some advice on Disabling Ubuntu’s Broken Wi-Fi Driver out there, but so far no dice.

And finally, graphics performance. It looks and works nicely on the desktop, and you can even watch 4K movies if you start mpv as “mpv -vo vaapi” (which makes it use the VA api provided by Intel to boost encoding/decoding performance on the cpu), but for now it at least fails miserably on Minecraft.

On the Debian side, I tried using the modesetting and the intel driver for X11, which doesn’t seem to make a difference, and Mesa 20.x and 21.x. Around this point, I found the page with the official Intel-driver for Ubuntu 22.04 (jammy). As the software is one hell of ifdefs to get to work on Debian, I quit after installing whatever was possible (with zero result on Minecrafts performance) and decided to reinstall with Ubuntu 22.04. So far everything works, and Minecrafts performance remains abysmal, no matter the i915 driver dkms. The one thing that remains to be tested is obviously to go from wayland to X11. Also, I’d like to see whether and how some other games run on it.

For now, it’s good enough for watching movies.