Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex On Dell xps m1330

Installing Hardy heron on my laptop was quite a breeze. the only thing i had to configure was the finger print reader. but even that went quite well after following an easy guide.
However Ibex was not that easy. Ibex was released some 6 days after i got my dell so it was good timing. but my first experience was very unpleasant. and things that just use to work on hardy without an extra config didn’t work on Ibex.Things like my Finger print reader stopped working even after i followed the guide that worked so well on hardy. Webcam too stopped working. that worked on hardy without me lifting a finger. my inbuilt mic too was affected. in the end i had to downgrade back to hardy and waited for the dust to settle and for the real geeks to figure out all the issues :). well the good news is that they have. am back to Ibex and must of the issues have been resolved. well not yet out of the box though but here are what i did to fix the issues.

Finger Print
To get the finger print reader to work just like it did on hardy. we will would be using thinkfinger a tool for configuring fingerpint readers on Linux.However the Thinkfinger in the Ubuntu repositories has some issues with ibex. so we would have to use an updated version. from a 3rd party repository.

Open Synaptic System/Administration/Synaptic
go to settings/Repositories and choose the Third-Pary Software tab Click add (not add CD-ROM) and add the following
deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/jon-oberheide/ubuntu intrepid main
when you are done click add source and close the the software sources tab.
now click the reload button on synaptic. once its done refreshing . search for the following thinkfinger-tools and libpam-thinkfinger right click install and apply and once its done. the first part is installed

secondly we are going to configure how to use the finger print reader for authentication. to do this we would have to edit some configuration file on the system

time to do some commands .. dont worry its nothing too hard

first we fire terminal


then copy and paste this in it and hit enter

gksu gedit /etc/pam.d/common-auth

then add the following lines

auth sufficient pam_thinkfinger.so
auth required pam_unix.so try_first_pass nullok_secure

just after # pam-auth-update to manage selection of other modules. See
# pam-auth-update(8) for details. here is how mine looks like

# /etc/pam.d/common-auth – authentication settings common to all services
# This file is included from other service-specific PAM config files,
# and should contain a list of the authentication modules that define
# the central authentication scheme for use on the system
# (e.g., /etc/shadow, LDAP, Kerberos, etc.). The default is to use the
# traditional Unix authentication mechanisms.
# As of pam 1.0.1-5, this file is managed by pam-auth-update by default.
# To take advantage of this, it is recommended that you configure any
# local modules either before or after the default block, and use
# pam-auth-update to manage selection of other modules. See
# pam-auth-update(8) for details.

auth sufficient pam_thinkfinger.so
auth required pam_unix.so try_first_pass nullok_secure

# here are the per-package modules (the “Primary” block)
auth [success=1 default=ignore] pam_unix.so nullok_secure
# here’s the fallback if no module succeeds
#auth requisite pam_deny.so
# prime the stack with a positive return value if there isn’t one already;
# this avoids us returning an error just because nothing sets a success code
# since the modules above will each just jump around
#auth required pam_permit.so
# and here are more per-package modules (the “Additional” block)
# end of pam-auth-update config


There is an easier way to of getting this done.

just copy and paste this in terminal and press enter

sudo '/usr/lib/pam-thinkfinger/pam-thinkfinger-enable'

Once that is done reboot your computer

Once you are logged in back Open Terminal again and store your finger print on the computer with this command

tf-tool --acquire

swap your finger of choice 3 times

to test run this

tf-tool --verify

then you are done. from now on you can use your finger print for
a) GDM session login
b) Screensaver unlock
c) Sudo and gksudo prompts
d) PolicyKit authorization

For some reasons the webcam driver that ships with ibex does not work with the m1330. so we would have to download and compile the one that works for it. again involves the commandline .. but again nothing serious.

we download the latest driver from here

you can download either the bz2 achieve or the gz i downloaded the gz
once down loaded right click driver and choose extract here. which would extract it the driver folder. now we need to enter into that folder from the commandline. to make this easy rename the extracted folder as just uvcvideo
then place it in your desktop then run this command

cd $HOME/Desktop/uvcvideo
your command line prompt should now look like this
now just copy paste and run the following commands one after the last one is done



than finally

sudo make install
running make would sure take a while. but once done make install wont be that long

This step is no-longer needed. All you have to do is install the latest update for your system and webcam would work fine.
sudo apt-get install build-essential cheese libjasper-runtime libjasper1
. once everything is done reboot and start cheese. Appications/Graphic/Cheese.

for those who would like to use their web cam with yahoo the you can use kopete Applications/Internet/Kopete.

In case your is a fresh Ubuntu and you want to install the necessary codecs (mp3,dvds,wma etc)

sudo wget http://www.medibuntu.org/sources.list.d/hardy.list -O /etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list && wget -q http://packages.medibuntu.org/medibuntu-key.gpg -O- | sudo apt-key add - && sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install -y ubuntu-restricted-extras non-free-codecs w32codecs totem-mozilla libdvdcss2

Outstanding issues
Inbuilt mic just found out about it yesterday although i have not found time to look into the problem. am sure there is a walk around they somewhere. i would sure update this post once i resolve the issue.
i hope i was of great help.

I found a work around for the Internal Mic problem. its still not perfect because your recording would be at a low volume. but its better than nothing

Go to Volume Control and double click on the volume icon in your gnome panel. In Preferences select Digital Input Source. This will enable the Digital Mic 1 option which you should select.

to use with skype: start sype go into Options -> Sound Devices. Select “HDA Intel (hw:Intel,0)” for Sound In, Sound Out, and Ringing.

Go ahead and make a test call to verify that everything is working correctly.
Gotten from this post http://www.wiredrevolution.com/ubuntu/fix-skype-audio-on-ubuntu-with-dell-xps-m1530m1330
Thanks to sixpigeons for pointing it out to me

One issue i forgot was the eject button on top of the keyboard does not work out of the box with ubuntu. i solved the problem here http://bigbrovar.wordpress.com/2008/11/20/how-to-make-m1330s-eject-button-work-with-ubuntu/

Other issues and bugs with M1330 and their work around can be found here http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=989039

By default its impossibe to receive files via bluetooth on Ibex. i was able to get round that by installing gnome-bluetooth from its in the repository and can be installed from synaptic. For it to work you have to run it from Applications/Accessories/Bluetooth File Sharing Thanbks ro nucco for this piece of information. One more thing i did was to add it to my startup so it starts up with my laptop. just add it to your start up session to do this go to /system/preference/session add and paste Bluetooth File Sharing in name paste gnome-obex-server in command and anything u feel like in description. and the program would start everytime you start your system.

30 comments on “Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex On Dell xps m1330

  1. you’re great!! it works just fine with my dell inspiron 1525 laptop!!! i’ve been looking for days to solve the problem. keep up the good work!!!

  2. Good day!
    Thank you for very interesting article! With the aid of it I fix problem with my webcam. But I have another annoying problem with media buttons. May be you have a solution…
    After upgrade from 8.04 when I press any media-buttons ones – on system it repeats 4-5 times. So I can’t use increase/decrease volume, mute etc… Please help me if you encounter with the same problem.

    P.S. I have Dell XPS M1330 too.

  3. @ dreamer
    i actually didnt have to configure anything .. it just worked for me .. did you do a upgrade or did u do a clean install .. i have heard that do an upgrade can be tricky. so perhaps a clean install might help .. however am looking into the problem and i will get back to you


    after a brife research i can seem to find anyone with the same problem on the m1330 except pple using xubuntu? are u using xubuntu?

  4. Fantastic. I was so happy to find your site. Very clear explanation, and it works like a charm. Webcam – check. Fingerprint reader – check. Eject button (which I hadn’t even noticed, myself) – check. Great work. I look forward to seeing your solution for the mic problem.

  5. @ sixpigeons glad it worked for you. its always nice to know someone finds it useful .. thanks for your feed back.
    please make sure you correct the mistake i made with the common-auth config .. i just updated with the correction

  6. Thanks again for all the help so-far. You’re a hero.

    I’ve noticed another couple of bumps that you might be interested in and/or might be willing to help us out with.

    1) after using your eject-button fix, the button physically ejects the CD, but it still appears as mounted, and the icon stays on the desktop. It also cannot be unmounted until a CD is placed back into the drive and then unmounted from the desktop.

    2) the integrated camera now works with Cheese, but not with aMSN.

    Any ideas?

  7. @ sixpigeons
    1) yeah i get that bug too but i guess i have been too lazy to look for a fix. because i feel its just some annoying bug i can live with. however i will look into it and if i come out with anything i will update the post.

    2) i dont use amsn but i will give it a try and let you know my findings thanks for the feed back.

  8. Thank you very much 🙂 I was tired of Vista on my XPS1330 and found your posting prior to wiping it out and installing Ubuntu 8.10 – except the microphone (recording) everything seems to be working now – I am very happy with the Ubuntu 8.10 and thankful to you. Please let us know if you fix the microphone (build in) issue. Best regards

  9. Hi, thanks for the tips!

    I just received my M1330 two days ago and the first thing I did was insert a live cd with Gparted and wipe all traces of Microsoft and Dell from the hard drive.

    So far everything about Intrepid Ibex and this machine are great.

    I’m having trouble getting the fingerprint scanner working though. I’ve followed your guide, installed the two packages, enabled the scanner and rebooted.

    Unfortunately, tf-tools –aquire won’t give me a successful swipe. I can tell it’s somewhat working because the failed swipes will increment. So far I have 0 successful out of 47 failed attempts.

    Any ideas?

    Thanks again, you’ve got some great info here!

  10. @ Permalink i dont know what the problem could be .. the thinkfinger tool doesnt support every finger print reader. but when it does support it works like a charm. never had any problem with it. esp when it comes to wipes. infat such is the faith i have in it that my first guess would be a hardware problem. hmm maybe since you still have your windows recovery disk perhaps you should try it there to confirm if its a hardware issue. you might also want to make sure that the finger you used is dry, i used the finger after my thumb before my middle finger and i swipped it from top to down.. not sideways. i hope that helps. please let me know the out come. cheers

  11. Mic is low volume when using skype. Other posts attribute this to PulseAudio. Even when Dig Mic1 and above settings are selected it is still quiet. Anyone know hot to fix this? Is it possible to disable pulseaudio?

  12. Hi bigbrowar, thanks a lot.
    your post helped me with mi webcam in a inspiron 1525, so now i can use it at full resolutin in cheese.

    (i speak spanish, so excuse me if something is worg writed.)

    by the way, i will share your help in ubuntu chile forums.


  13. @alebilox cool .. please feel free to share distribute this guide to as many people as you can .. i might even make a pdf of it .. so that it can be easily downloaded and distributed .. cheers

  14. while have will still try to update this post as new and better ways of going things come up .. am starting to find intrepid quite unstable for me … and am hence downgrading back to hardy heron. unfortunately i wont be able to test how well any improvement will work. thanks to everybody that make this a great guide.

  15. Somehow when I use the finger printer for log in, I always have to type later the gnome-keyring-daemon when I want to join my WLAN. How I can fix this?

  16. I have recently upgraded to Kubuntu 8.10 and found that KDE has several fixes that work better for the m1330. Suspend, volume mixer, skype works easily. Much easier to change settings as well

  17. Sweet.
    Now I can use wecam feature with meboo on ubuntu using iphones internet connection.
    that was the last piece which was missing.

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