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   Linux FAQ > 8. How To Do This or Find Out That...
Question:  8.1. How To Find Out If a Notebook Runs Linux.

There's no fixed answer to this question, because notebook hardware is constantly updated, and getting the X display, sound, PCMCIA, modem, and so forth, working, can take a good deal of effort.

Most notebooks currently on the market, for example, use "Winmodems," which often do not work with Linux because of their proprietary hardware interfaces. Even notebooks which are certified as "Linux compatible," may not be completely compatible.

Information about installing Winmodems in general is contained in the Winmodems-and-Linux HOWTO. (Refer to "Where Is the Documentation?")

You can find the most current information, or ask other users about their notebook experiences, on the linux-laptop mailing list, which is hosted by the server. (Refer to "What Mailing Lists Are There?")

A mailing list for Linux on IBM Thinkpads has its home page at

Another Thinkpad mailing list is hosted by Send email with the word "help" in the body of the message to

There is a Web page about Linux on IBM Thinkpads at

The Linux Laptop home page is at

For information about interfacing peripherals like Zip and CD-ROM drives through parallel ports, refer to the Linux Parallel Port Home Page, at

If you need the latest version of the PCMCIA Card Services package, it is (or was) located at, but that host no longer seems to be available. Recent distributions are on You will also need to have the kernel source code installed as well. Be sure to read the PCMCIA-HOWTO, which is included in the distribution.

This FAQ is from Linux Frequently Asked Questions with Answers, maintained by Robert Kiesling

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