credondo
1 Copper

My first week with the dell xps 13 Developer Edition 2015 (DE)

After a week using the laptop, I have to say I am a bit disappointed.  My model is:

XPS 13 (9343).  1920x1080 display.  BIOS A03

When I ordered this ubuntu pre-installed laptop I did not think that I had to spend many hours  searching in internet how to patch a new laptop just to make it "usable", speaking on the phone with Dell TechCenter people who has absolutely no idea of what I was talking about and waiting days for email answer  that I have not yet received.

Here a summary of issues I have found and some of the "solutions", most of them are already in this forum

- Some  missing dependencies the first time  apt-get update/upgrade: can be fixed with the -f option  

- Glitchy trackpad  : I added   psmouse.resetafter=0 boot option . The trackpad still jumps slightly  sometimes but now is usable.

- Network adapter needed (only the first time) some router and laptop reboots before been able to connect via wifi.

- Network adapter does not wake up after suspension: It is not a permanent solution but  after "sudo restart network-manager" the network works fine again.

- Disgusting tearing appears on some full-screen applications (e.g. fullscreen chrome videos). I have a 7 years old inspiron 640m with ubuntu 14.04 that plays the same full-screen 190x1080 videos smoother.  

- Additionally I bought a  D3100 docking station. This  device was shown as optional hardware to this model. Customer service assure me (twice) that this device was compatible with the XPS Developer Edition but, as far as I know (now), there is no linux driver available for this DisplayLink usb 3 device.

 

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14 Replies
muluman88
1 Copper

RE: My first week with the dell xps 13 Developer Edition 2015 (DE)

Hi,

I faced similar problems as you can find them in this forum:

- creating recovery after first boot crashed

- dependency issues

- really bad touchpad behaviour, especially when you try to point and click with two fingers

So today I went and installed 15.04 as Barton George kind of suggested in his blog. After changing the bios to secure boot i get the nice grub selector to choose method of booting from USB Stick. Before that, I always got this message:

Missing parameter in configuration file. Keyword: path

gfxboot.c32: not a COM32R image
boot:

and had to type the way i wanted to boot.

After the installation the system would not boot into the freshly installed ubuntu. only the live stick was recognized as bootable partition. The use of boot-repair under ubuntu live fixed that. The necessary proprietary drivers for the wlan module were installed. I used tethering over my phone to access my network. I guess you could also use a USB to Ethernet adapter.

So now with 15.04 everything seems fine, especially the touchpad reacts the way it's supposed to, no glitching and the use of one finger moving the pointer and the other one klicking works fine. So my recommendation is to update to 15.04. The reasons are explained in Barton's blog.

Another thing I noted: Before I began installing 15.04. I made the recovery bootstick with the dell tools. When my other boot stick, with the image from ubuntu.com wouldn't work anymore (who knows why), I tried using the recovery stick, and that one also ran on 15.04 instead of 14.04.2 like I would expect.

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8 Krypton

RE: My first week with the dell xps 13 Developer Edition 2015 (DE)

Did you also have the issue of a locked oem account after running the initial configuration after first powerup?

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domak
6 Indium

RE: My first week with the dell xps 13 Developer Edition 2015 (DE)

I'm agree with your sentence of how hard it is to make this computer just usable.

The worst thing for me is there are no response from dell team on this forum (and as you say, it is useless to try to contact your dell local support). They sometimes put a comment on Barton's blog but here we are alone. No official bug tracker, no wiki.

A customer has created a github repo just to report issues:

https://github.com/advancingu/XPS13Linux/issues

RE: My first week with the dell xps 13 Developer Edition 2015 (DE)

I hope you can understand that the engineers involved in the project (myself included) have limits to how much time we can spend answering questions and troubleshooting on the forums before they stop being able to do their actual jobs or become burned out (or both).

That said, we're working on getting the appropriate Dell support and social media teams to more consistently be responsive here, but it's not a substitute for talking directly to Dell support.

--
Project Sputnik development lead
Software Principal Engineer
Linux OS Architecture
Dell | Client Product Group

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domak
6 Indium

RE: My first week with the dell xps 13 Developer Edition 2015 (DE)

Hi Jared,

I hope you can understand too that I have bought a 1500€ computer for its linux support and the first setup crashed, the usb hub proposed by dell does not work, the local team support is useless, I had to reinstall the system after a dist upgrade and I spend a lot of hours to have a working machine (almost: the trackpad is still glitchy and the keyboard sometimes repeat keys).

So take no offence but if you had published all infos on what is working or what is not working on a public place (like bugtracker) you would spend much less time answering questions in this forum. It is not normal that a customer had to create a github repo to follow issues on a service we have payed.

If it was an open source project, I could be more indulgent, but I have paid for that linux support and I feel very lonely facing to all my problems.

RE: My first week with the dell xps 13 Developer Edition 2015 (DE)

Domak: Yes, I can definitely understand your frustration. Like I said, we're working on fixing these communication issues. Given Project Sputnik's origins, we didn't start off with these resources in place, so this is one area that has been a challenge for us.

the local team support is useless

It would really help us if you described what specific issues you've had with Dell's support staff, such as:

  • How did you try to contact Dell's support staff?
  • What did you communicate?
  • What exact response did you receive?

So take no offence but if you had published all infos on what is working or what is not working on a public place (like bugtracker) you would spend much less time answering questions in this forum. It is not normal that a customer had to create a github repo to follow issues on a service we have payed.

Of the issues you mentioned, we weren't aware of them beforehand, and we've attempted to document them, but you're correct in that it hasn't always been in the same place.

If it was an open source project, I could be more indulgent, but I have paid for that linux support and I feel very lonely facing to all my problems.

You indeed paid for support. As I understand, all Developer Edition systems come with Dell ProSupport for a minimum period of one year. You are able to exercise this support contract. If you are having issues with ProSupport, you should escalate. I'll note that one of the quickest ways I've found to get help (aside from calling support) has been by utilizing our social media channels: <dell.com/socialmedia>. This forum is not an official support forum, but we are working on improving the monitoring of the forum by our social media teams.

--
Project Sputnik development lead
Software Principal Engineer
Linux OS Architecture
Dell | Client Product Group

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credondo
1 Copper

RE: My first week with the dell xps 13 Developer Edition 2015 (DE)

Hi anaran, I do not have the issue of the oem account.

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Jaime R. Garza
1 Copper

RE: My first week with the dell xps 13 Developer Edition 2015 (DE)

I just bought the Developers Edition in Germany, I got it with MS Windows. When I called support they told me it was a sales problem and they were currently all in vacations. So they suggested me to install it myself, what I did. I install Ubuntu 15.04 and had several problems with the WiFi driver, but I finally could solve them, just to notice that the Display functionality on the Docking Station D3100 doesn't work at all!!

Could you please let me know when is the D3100 going to be supported on Linux?

Cheers! 

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8 Krypton

RE: My first week with the dell xps 13 Developer Edition 2015 (DE)

It appears that there is a new Linux driver for the DisplayLink chip on the Docking Station D3100:

www.displaylink.com/.../ubuntu.php

http://www.displaylink.com/downloads/ubuntu.php

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