Dell XPS support?

stratacast1

Well-Known Member

Reaction score: 43
Messages: 336

I have a Dell XPS 9350 (Skylake), it does not have Nvidia graphics, and I'm contemplating putting FreeBSD on it. Before I decide to decommission my laptop for a time though, I want to ask if anyone has had success with it? I stripped out the Broadcom chip for the Intel...7265? AC wireless chip. I know it won't work over AC, that's okay I guess since my understanding is it requires some binary blob. If anyone can tell me, I would like to know:
  • How's the battery life? With Fedora I get around 10 hours
  • How reliable is sleep?
  • How's the trackpad?
  • Do all features work? Such as backlit keyboard, function keys
That's all I can really think of. Since this is a newer laptop with Intel, are there any general "gotchas" that I have to suffer with, or require extra configuration?
 

abishai

Aspiring Daemon

Reaction score: 185
Messages: 767

I own this one and run FreeBSD on it.

1. Battery about 8 hours
2. You need manually remove 1 gpu binary blob or resume will fail. (dmc, I believe)
3. Huge issues with trackpad - synaptics doesn't work. Can be resolved with latest Xorg (not in ports), evdev enabled kernel and libinput. But, maybe things improved since I tried.
4. Headphone support needs some kernel patching. Backlit keyboard manages by BIOS and works. Brightness function keys don't emit anything.
 

k.jacker

Aspiring Daemon

Reaction score: 469
Messages: 740

I don't have a XPS, but a Latitude 7240 business notebook. My brightness keys do not work either and the keypress Fn+up/down isn't recognized at all in Xorg.

I worked around that by loading acpi_video.ko on startup ( # sysrc kld_list+=acpi_video) and than configured shortcuts in XFCE.
Now I just press ctrl+up or ctrl+down to run the following two scripts (one for brightness up, one for brightness down):
Code:
#!/bin/sh
# Brightness DOWN
doas sysctl hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=$((`sysctl -n hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness`-10))

Code:
#!/bin/sh
# Brightness UP
doas sysctl hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=$((`sysctl -n hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness`+10))

As you see, I use security/doas to gain write permission for sysctl.
If you like to do so as well, the following lines must be added to /usr/local/etc/doas.conf
Code:
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=100
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=90
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=80
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=70
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=60
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=50
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=40
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=30
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=20
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=10
permit nopass madde as root cmd sysctl args hw.acpi.video.lcd0.brightness=0
Replace madde with your username....
 

Chris_H

Daemon

Reaction score: 211
Messages: 1,076

As to your Broadcom wifi;
It should work with either the bwi(4), or bwn(4). Mine uses the bwn.
Setup is pretty easy. To get it acknowledged:
rc.conf(5):
Code:
# add any kernel modules not already in the kernel here
kld_list="if_bwn bwn_v4_ucode"

wlans_bwn0="wlan0"
ifconfig_wlan0="DHCP"
You'll neet to adjust according to how you authenticate, etc...
See also:
Wireless on FreeBSD (Handbood section on Wireless).

HTH, and Good luck!

--Chris
 

zader

Active Member

Reaction score: 26
Messages: 201

Hey guys,
Just wondering in regards to the xps.. have you got power managment working? Or anything close to automatic graphics card switching to save power?
 

Beastwick

New Member

Reaction score: 1
Messages: 18

I own this one and run FreeBSD on it.

1. Battery about 8 hours
2. You need manually remove 1 gpu binary blob or resume will fail. (dmc, I believe)
3. Huge issues with trackpad - synaptics doesn't work. Can be resolved with latest Xorg (not in ports), evdev enabled kernel and libinput. But, maybe things improved since I tried.
4. Headphone support needs some kernel patching. Backlit keyboard manages by BIOS and works. Brightness function keys don't emit anything.

Hey there, thanks for all the info!
if I compiled all my software via ports do I still need to remove that one gpu binary blob and what does the kernel need patch wise to make the headphone jack work?
 

abishai

Aspiring Daemon

Reaction score: 185
Messages: 767

No, it was fixed. 12.0 suspends and resumes out of the box. I believe jack is fixed as well.
 

Beastwick

New Member

Reaction score: 1
Messages: 18

Unfortunately when I connect my headphones the sound is distorted. I first fixed sound auto switching between the speakers and jack and I tried the pcm 50:100 balance trick, but nothing works. Sound is distorted for all my headphones and I've noticed if I don't plug them in all the way I hear clear sound, but the second the get plugged in completely sound is inaudible and boosting the volume makes it sound but distorted.
 

abishai

Aspiring Daemon

Reaction score: 185
Messages: 767

Unfortunately when I connect my headphones the sound is distorted. I first fixed sound auto switching between the speakers and jack and I tried the pcm 50:100 balance trick, but nothing works. Sound is distorted for all my headphones and I've noticed if I don't plug them in all the way I hear clear sound, but the second the get plugged in completely sound is inaudible and boosting the volume makes it sound but distorted.
Apply this one https://reviews.freebsd.org/D19017 and recompile kernel.
 

Beastwick

New Member

Reaction score: 1
Messages: 18

Apply this one https://reviews.freebsd.org/D19017 and recompile kernel.

Thank you so much for pointing me in the right direction. I want to try this solution, but is there a handbook or wiki page detailing how I can apply a patch to the regular sources? I've used ports, but this seems like I have to patch the base system? Thanks so much!

Edit: Nevermind, guess I didn't see the whole message, looking for reference on kernel compilation.
 

Beastwick

New Member

Reaction score: 1
Messages: 18

Ok that worked!

If anyone else is using a Dell XPS 13 9360, I applied the patch abishai posted. You must create a diff file of that commit and apply it using patch in the /usr/src and build your kernel.

For my laptop I also had to add hint.hdac.0.cad0.nid33.config="as=2 seq=15" so the headphones and speakers will auto switch.
 
Top