Samsung NP530U3C with Fedora 17

Just before the release of Windows 8 it was evident that the laptop prices would come down due to the dumping of the 'old' laptops with Windows 7.
That was the plan and it worked out well.

I have been eyeballing Samsung 5-series NP530 for a while for few reasons such as:
  • Ultrabook with Samsung's good quality
  • Nice set of ports (GigaNIC, 2xUSB, 1xUSB (with power), HDMI), slots (4in1 card reader), bluetooth and 802.11N Wireless
  • Right form factor (=thin ultrabook)
  • Quality components like Intel's i5 3rd generation CPU and Samsung's battery technology
  • Possibility to tweak performance with additional memory and hard drive
  • Reasonable price. Thanks Redmond :-)


Stickers are courtesy of LibreStickers.com 

Commencing shopping

After picking up the laptop it was tweaking time!
Get the tools:

Crank the hood (as said: Samsung series 5 ultrabooks can be tweaked (vs other ultrabooks / Apple products):




Replace the 500Gb relic SATA HD with 128Gb low profile (7mm) SATA SSD from Samsung and add 4Gb memory to second empty slot (not available too often nowadays)



Bye Bye Windows :-)

Now honestly I have nothing against Microsoft nor Windows 7, but the tool needs to fit the purpose and my tool needs to be Linux.
Since I have ASUS Transformer TF201 (hybrid tablet/laptop with Android), I wanted the laptop to boot up in seconds... this turned out to be a bit of a challenge.
First I wanted to test the Ubuntu family (Ubuntu/Lubuntu/Xubuntu) for lightning fast boot experience, but I was very disappointed after the initial tests; the boot times varied from 20 to 26 seconds.

WARNING: I always check the hardware compatibility with Linux prior to purchasing one; Samsungs UEFI/Secure boot has issues with Ubuntu which may lead to bricked laptop (see bug). This issue can be bypassed easily by turning of the secure boot from BIOS or by tweaking the installation.

Next I Googled a bit more and thanks to short boot time hungry community there was a lot of evidence that Fedora 17 was the way to go.

From my point of view it doesn't make any difference if I use Debian or RedHat fork; at work RedHat rules on servers and at home Ubuntu/Mint rules on the desktop... so I am a hybrid already :-) (There are also few Windows at the house... and my work laptops primary OS is Windows due to the need for MS Office)

So after installing Fedora 17 I got way better boot times with the default installation (vs X/U/Lubutu) and was very impressed how the Fedora had developed since the last time I used it.
So in the beginning it took about 15 seconds to boot.
Next it was time to tweak the boot processes. systemd-analyze is an excellent software to help you with tweaking. This excellent article really got me on fire.
sudo yum update
sudo yum install systemd-analyze
So the rough way to see whats up:
systemd-analyze blame
To get the plotted SVG version:
systemd-analyze plot > bootchart.svg
... and to see the plotted SVG use:
eog bootchart.svg
And you get something like this:


So with just a few plain tricks I got the boot time below 6 seconds which is good enough.
The suspend recovery time is zero (0!) seconds which is really nice.

... About those simple tricks - to list few:
sudo ln -s /dev/null /etc/systemd/system/udev-settle.service
sudo ln -s /dev/null /etc/systemd/system/fedora-wait-storage.service
sudo ln -s /dev/null /etc/systemd/system/fedora-storage-init.service
sudo systemctl daemon-reload

+ my dev environment software (like apache and mysql to start up later) 




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