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Linux on the Gericom WebBoy Laptop


Special thanks to Werner Heuser, who has encouraged me to write this betaversion of a report, and whose helpful tips make it possible to work with Linux on laptop!

The author disclaims all warranties with regard to this document, including all implied warranties of merchantability and fitness for a certain purpose; in no event shall the author be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of this document.

Sorry, but I'm not the president of Lloyds - read and use this document at your own risk!


Processor and CoreLogic

  • P-III 800
  • L1 Cache: 32 KB
  • L2 Cache: 128 KB on-die
  • Core Logic: SiS chipset with graphics, audio and modem controller integrated
  • Bus Architecture: 66 MHz Front Side Bus (100 MHz ready), PCI / AGP


  • Display Panel: 14,1-inch XGA active-matrix TFT display supported resolution 1024x768 with up to 16M colors


  • Graphics Controller: SiS 630 with integrated AGP Bus 2D/3D graphics accelerator
  • Graphics Ability: UltraAGP architecture graphics capability (similar to 4x AGP)
  • Dual Display: Simutaneous LCD/External Monitor Supported
  • etc.


  • Audio Chipset: SiS 630 with integrated audio controller
  • Sound Capability: 64-Voice Polyphony Wavetable Synthesizer; DirectSound 3D accelerator for IID, IAD and Doppler effects. Full duplex, independent sample rate converter. SoundBlaster PRO/16 compliant. AC'97 V2.1 interface supported.
  • etc.

Marc Haisenko <mhaisenko_at_janet.de> wrote: SuSE 7.1 Professional detects the soundcard, using ALSA: snd-card-trident.

0 [card1        ]: 4DWave - SiS 7018
                           SiS 7018 PCI Audio at 0xd400, irq 10


Marc Haisenko <mhaisenko_at_janet.de> wrote: I experience some strange behaviour with the WebBoy and APM, e.g. when going standby and awakening, the keyboard does not respond any more (but minicom correctly receives data via z-modem on ttyS0 ;-)

Modem "SmartLink HAMR Modem (SIS630S)"

  • Chipset: SiS 630 with Modem Controller integrated
  • Transmission Speed: V.90 / K56flex for download data speed up to 56000 bps; V.34, V.17, V.29 transmission protocol

This Linux driver [archived link]. supports all laptops, using the SIS630(S) chipset: Gericom Overdose (Webboy), Baycom Worldbook II, Sager ... (in fact these are laptops manufactured by Clevo(KAPOK) Modell 2200C/2700C).

Sebastian Boettcher wrote: "Because the integrated modem is a winmodem, a special driver is needed; this one I found at Heavy Metal II - BUT: This driver doesn't compile under Kernel 2.4.x, so I'am trying to rewrite it's sources. Don't expect me to success. "

Another driver is at SMLINK


  • Network Adapter: SiS 630 with integrated PCI Fast Ethernet funktion for 10Base-T and 100Base-TX network standards
  • PnP Funktion: M$ Win 9x Plug'n'Pray compatible
  • etc.

PC Card

  • PCMCIA Controller: O2Micro OZ 6812/ 6912 controller with Zoomed Video Capability
  • Features: Single slot for TYPE II/III PC Cards with Card Bus 1.0 interface, etc.

Problems and Solutions

Just in the prolog I've have announced that this is a beta-version of a report. Just in the moment not all problemns are resolved!- but we're working on that. (In all I'll talk in a plural mode because Mr. W. Heuser is and was a helpful compain!)

Which Linux Distribution

I've tried only three distributions:

  • SuSE Linux 7.0 professional
  • RedHat Linux 6.1
  • Debian GNU/Linux 2.2

SuSE's Yast2 does not work, no graphics will appear on the display. Yast1 works fine, but after rebooting the system the first time, there are problems with the PCMCIA-Configuration. You see a message like 'Startin SuSE PCMCIA scheme' for a long time and nothing else happend.

The German version of RedHat has other bugs (f.e. problems with the keyboard), the installation on that laptop works, there are problems with the X-Configuration, but that's not a RedHat problem.

Now I'm working with the Debian GNU/Linux 2.2. I have no problems with the installation although it was my first experience with the Debian distribution. See the next section for resolving the X-Configuration, with the LAN-driver I've no problems. Modem- and Soundconfiguration will follow.

X-Windows 3.3.x

The first problem was the standars XF86_SVGA-Driver. In all modes, and I've tried many - I've reached a satisfied solution. The only way it works is with Framebuffer and here is the XF86Config-File.

Important: Now the SiS-Company offeres a website for Linux-Users, and ther You can find also an new xsis-driver: You find this under: SiS . They offers also other solutions for sound and modem a.s.o.

How to use the Framebuffer-Device

First take a look in your Kernel-Configuration if the Framebuffer-support is activated. You must look in the following sections:

Code maturity level options --->
[*] Prompt for development and/or incomplete code/drivers
Console drivers --->
[*] Video mode selection support
[*] Support for frame buffer devices (EXPERIMENTAL)
[*] VESA VGA graphics console
[*] Advanced low level driver options
Select also Mono, 2bpp, 4bpp, 8bpp, 16bpp, 24bpp and 32bpp packed pixel drivers!

See also the Frame-Buffer-HowTo and if you have to recompile your Kernel take a look in your documentation how to do that!
Before you restart your laptop make sure, that the xfbdev is installed. I'm using a solution of 1024x768 with 16bpp. For that I have to change my LILO-Configurationfile lilo.conf: vga=0x317 (For that you must look at the FrameBuffer-HowTo - there you find a table which will explain the different modes).
Here is the XF86Config - File:
Starting the X-Window-System:

 ~$ startx wmaker -- -bpp 16

IMPORTANT: You can only start with the solution specified in your lilo.conf!!! (Look at the Frame-Buffer-HowTo for details)

SiS 900 LAN Driver

You can load the SiS900-module with:

 ~# modprobe sis900

Normally no error-message will appear. The next step is to activate the network device with ifconfig:

 ~# ifconfig eth0 netmask up


  • Andreas Gabriel <gabriel_at_hrz.uni-marburg.de>

Author: Fabio Tosques <tosques_at_informatik.hu-berlin.de>.
Minor changes above have been made by Werner Heuser <wehe_at_tuxmobil.org>.

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© Werner Heuser 1997-2014 · http://tuxmobil.org/gericom_webboy_e.html · last change Mon Oct 22 2012