I prefer ALSA than sound drivers included in stock kernel. I use ALSA driver version 0.5.9d, configured this way:
./configure --with-cards=via686aThen modules.conf should be modified to contains:
# ALSA native device support alias char-major-116 snd options snd snd_major=116 snd_cards_limit=1 alias snd-card-0 snd-card-via686a options snd-card-via686a snd_index=0 snd_id="VIA" # OSS/Free setup alias char-major-14 soundcore alias sound-slot-0 snd-card-0 alias sound-service-0-0 snd-mixer-oss alias sound-service-0-1 snd-seq-oss alias sound-service-0-3 snd-pcm-ossalias sound-service-0-8 snd-seq-oss alias sound-service-0-12 snd-pcm-ossOn Debian, you should put lines above on /etc/modutils/alsa, instead of directly modifying /etc/modules.conf. I used mp3blaster to test sound, because it comes with its own mixer (easier to setup and use than other command-line mixer).
via82cxxx_audioYou can ignore via82cxxx: timeout while reading AC97 codec message.
Internal Modem Setup
There is Linux driver for the internal modem now. Check this page http://www.mbsi.ca/cnxtlindrv/ which contains driver and documentation.
Default Debian kernel does not support APM, you don't have to recompile kernel to activate APM, but add append="apm=on" on your /etc/lilo.conf. It's a pity that this Presario battery - APM interface only tells battery charge percentage. Anyone knows any application which will calculate / extrapolate battery time from that percentage info?
After experimenting with ACPI, I can successfully turn-off notebook power using poweroff command, while using APM, I still have to press power button for more than 4 seconds after poweroff to really power-off this box.
Nothing special must be done to make Debian knows PC Card. I use DLink DMF-560TXD (10/100 Mbps ethernet + 56kbps data/fax modem) which flawlessly recognized by Linux, and enable me to connect again to Internet without having to use Windows.
A little package on Debian, divine, is very helpful if you have to change network often, but you have to use fixed IP address. It works by checking whether a specific machine with known IP address is exist, by sending an ARP request. I found that we can't choose any Windows NT or Windows 9x machine for that ARP interrogation, because they won't answer such a request (???).
USB ports are recognized by kernel 2.2.18pre21. Testing using serial-to-USB converter was success. Kernel used was 2.2.20 and 2.4.18. USB mouse also works.
Software detailed info
Latest version of this document is available in http://research.indocisc.com/~andika/12XL205/