Hardware

Desktop

TarHeel Linux is created based on the CentOS and Scientific Linux distributions and should be able to run on the majority of i386 and x86_64 based machines.

Our focus is in CCI desktops and laptops.  The following desktop machines have been tested.

Lenovo ThinkStation E31 2552-UN9

This CCI desktop machine comes with a 500GB hard drive and a NVIDIA Quadro 600 video card.  The TarHeel Linux 6.3 Boot installer mounts the internal hard drive through /dev/sdf instead of /dev/sda.  Because of that, we have a different Kickstart file name thl64-fdrive.cfg to install TarHeel Linux 6 on this machine.  In the installation menu, hit tab and modify the line to replace “thl64.cfg” with “thl-fdrive.cfg”.

For optimal performance, it is recommended that NVIDIA driver is to be installed to replace the generic Nouveau video driver.  Follow the instruction from the page “Installing NVIDIA Drivers in TarHeel Linux 6” to install the NVIDIA drivers.

 

Lenovo ThinkCentre M92p Tiny 3238-UN9

This tiny CCI machine runs very stable TarHeel Linux 6.  We are having difficulty in getting to the BIOS of the test machine we have to obtain the MAC address, we recommend that you copy the MAC address from the box which shipped with the machine.  This is a label on the box which lists the MAC address of the machine.

 

Lenovo ThinkStation E30 7783-UN6 & 7783-UN7

The CCI Lenovo ThinkStation E30 machine has no problem running TarHeel Linux 6.

There is a problem in installing TarHeel Linux 6.2 with machines equipped with Nvidia video card such as ThinkStation E30.  Video driver, Nouveau, which comes with the installer is having problem.  The installer presents a kernal panic error and quits.

Lenovo ThinkStation E30 runs fine with TarHeel Linux 6 with Nouveau disable.  It is recommended to install the Nvidia Linux driver instead.

This machine has no problem with TarHeel Linux 5 installation.  It is also rcommended to install the Nvidia Linux driver.

Lenovo ThinkCentre M91p Eco 0266-UN6

Lenovo ThhinkCentre M91p Eco runs TarHeel Linux 6 without any problem.

Lenovo ThinkStation E20 4220-UN5

Our test machine has no problem running TarHeel Linux 5 x86_64 distribution. This CCI machine comes with a NVidia Quadro FX580 viedo card. To fully utilized the capability of the video card, we download and install the NVidia Linux driver. That NVidia Linux driver is kernel dependent and therefore it needs to be recompiled when TarHeel Linux has an updated kernel.

Lenovo ThinkCentre M90p Eco 3853-UN5

Our test machine shows high stability in running both TarHeel Linux 5 and 6 x86_64 distributions.

Lenovo ThinkCentre M58p Tower 7484-UN3

Our test machine indicates that TarHeel Linux 5 x86_64 is stable.

Lenovo ThinkCentre M58 7479-UN3

Our test machine indicates that installation of TarHeel Linux 5 and 6 in x86_64 architecture has no problem.  TarHeel Linux 5 and 6 appear to be very stable.

Lenovo ThinkCentre M55e Desktop 9632-UN8

This machine has no problem running TarHeel Linux 5 x86_64 kernel.

IBM ThinkCentre M52 Tower 8113-UN6

This machine is running the TarHeel Linux 5 i386 distribution with no problems.

IBM ThinkCentre M50 Tower 8143-UN5

Our test IBM ThinkCentre M50 test machine runs nicely with TarHeel Linux 5.

Our test machine can also run TarHeel Linux 6 without any problem.

Dell Precision T5500

These towers are running the TarHeel Linux 5 distribution with no problems.

Dell OptiPlex 760

TarHeel Linux 5 has been installed in this machine without any problem.

Dell Precision 490

We have installed TarHeel Linux 5 on a Dell Precision 490 machine belonged to the Department of Psychology. That machine is equipped with 2 dual core 3GHz Xeon processors and 9GB of memory.

Apple iMac Intel Core 2 Duo

One way to build a dual boot system of iMac is to use rEFIt as the boot menu providing easy booting to either Mac OS X or TarHeel Linux 5.

The other way to have TarHeel Linux 5 running on Apple iMac is to use virtualization technology putting TarHeel Linux 5 as guest OS. We recommend using a 3 button wheel mouse on Apple iMac when using TarHeel Linux 5 as guest OS. One can have both 3 button wheel mouse and Apple USB mouse connected to iMac machine at the same time.

Server

While TarHeel Linux is targeted to desktop machines, it is quite appropriate to install on servers. The following server-class machines have been tested. Normally, servers do not come with a high resolution video card. When TarHeel Linux is installed, at the boot prompt, type “server” and hit return. This will allow building a customized TarHeel Linux for servers.

Dell PowerEdge 1850

This 1U server has no problem running TarHeel Linux 5 x86_64 distribution.

IBM BladeCenter HS20

These are blades in an IBM BladeCenter E chassis, and all are running TarHeel Linux 5 i386 distribution.

 

Laptop

The following laptops are able to run TarHeel Linux in 3 ways, running Linux natively, dual boot, and virtualization. We have tried very hard to be able to run TarHeel Linux 6 natively on laptop.  For dual booting setup, one will have to take the trouble to partition the drive in advance but most recent CCI laptops are able to configure as a dual boot system running Windows 7 and TarHeel Linux. For TarHeel Linux 5, getting Wifi to work has been a challenge due to the licensing restriction of vendor Linux driver in TarHeel Inux 5. For TarHeel Linux 6, the Linux generic drivers should be able to take care of most of the hardware out there.

Virtualization is a good way to run TarHeel Linux on laptop.  We have tested extensively using VirtualBox to run TarHeel Linux as a host or guest OS.

Lenovo ThinkPad W530 2441-UN9Lenovo ThinkPad W530

The CCI Laptop Lenovo W530 has no problem running TarHeel Linux 6 natively.  The build-in camera works.  Sound is functioning properly.  We have also tried accessing UNC-Secure Wifi network and it is working nicely.

Since Linux laptop is meant to be portable and it will go different places, on campus and off campus, we recommend setting up TarHeel Linux 6 a little different for a better computing experience.  We have a customized Kickstart file to build TarHeel Linux 6 for this machine.  Follow the instruction “Installing TarHeel Linux 6 on Laptops” to install TarHeel Linux 6.

The laptop is equipped with a NVIDIA N14P-Q1 graphics card.

Lenovo ThinkPad X201 3626-UN5

The CCI Laptop Lenovo X201 is built with Windows 7 using the CCI ImageUltra Boot Disc for Windows 7 64 bit. Instruction on how to build Windows 7 with CCI ImageUltra Boot Disc can be found in the help.unc.edu site.

We recommend that you register the Mac Addresses for both wired and Wifi networks to get DHCP address through http://onyen.unc.edu site. Once Windows is built using the wired network, Wifi accessing UNC-1 wireless network will be up automatically.

The BIOS of Lenovo ThinkPad X201 is adjusted to enable virtualization so that TarHeel Linux 5 x86_64 cm be installed under VirtualBox environment. If not, only TarHeel Linux i386 can be installed.

Lenovo ThinkPad R400 7439-UN4

The CCI Laptop Lenovo R400 is built with Windows 7 using the CCI ImageUltra Boot Disc for Windows 7 64 bit. Instruction on how to build Windows 7 with CCI ImageUltra Boot Disc can be found in the help.unc.edu site.

We recommend that you register the Mac Addresses for both wired and Wifi networks to get DHCP address through http://onyen.unc.edu site. Once Windows is built using the wired network, Wifi accessing UNC-1 wireless network will be up automatically.

The BIOS of Lenovo ThinkPad R400 has a problem so that we can only install 32 bit version of TarHeel Linux 5 under VirtualBox environment.