Japanese Hitachi Laptop (PC-5NP01-9D5xxx)
Slackware Linux 10.0

Walter Stanish (walter@pratyeka.org)

I picked up a very nice, light but somewhat dated Hitachi-brand laptop in Shanghai in January 2005.  Although out of date it was very cheap and a good alternative to my other laptop (an extremely heavy but also out of date model!).  Despite lacking a CD drive or a functional network connection to make a start from I eventually got it working with Slackware 10.0 and have started to use it as a sort of portable photo archive & viewing system.  Here's how.


Note: I don't actually know what the real model name of this system is, as I bought it second hand.  The model # above (PC-5NP01-9D5xxx) is mostly visible on a sticker under the machine (xxx's = worn).  It may be the PC-5NP01-9D5LAD I've found mentioned online.  It appears to be a Japanese-only model, maybe the 'FLORA 2', and has no English documentation whatsoever.  It seems to have a vaguely similar hardware configuration to some of the Hitachi Visionbook Pro models marketed in the west.


Obligatory Specs
Status
Everything except IrDA is tested and working!  IrDA might work, but I lack the time to play with it now.

Before Starting
A lot of fiddling in BIOS had to be done by trial and error to get the Linux drivers mentioned below to work.  The BIOS settings you need to set, should you copy my configuration, are as follows.


 Advanced / Plug & Play O/S: Yes
 Advanced / Audio Options Menu / Sound: Enabled
 Advanced / Audio Options Menu / Base I/O address: Sound1  (IO 220, 330, 388 / IRQ 5 / DMA 3, 5)
 Advanced / Audtio Options Menu / ESS Configuration: Enabled
 Advanced / Audtio Options Menu / ESS Configuration / Base I/O address: 800
 Advanced / PCI Configuration / USB;VGA: IRQ 4
 Advanced / PCI Configuration / Card Bus Slot 1: IRQ 10
 Advanced / PCI Configuration / Card Bus Slot 2: IRQ 11
 Advanced / PCI Configuration / Internal LAN/MODEM: IRQ 3
 Power / Battery Mode: Disabled
 Power / AC Mode: Disabled


In short: The drivers
mouse
gpm -t ps2
network
modprobe tulip
(First ensure BIOS has IRQ 3 set for the  Advanced / PCI Configuration / Internal LAN/MODEM option, and that  Power / Battery Mode is Disabled and Power / AC Mode is Disabled.  For some reason enabling power management stops Linux from finding the LAN chip.)
graphics
(800x600 framebuffer console)
(VESA driver in SVGAlib configuration file - /etc/vga/libvga.conf under Slackware 10.0.)
pcmcia
(Compile kernel pcmcia support, with Yenta bridge enabled.  Slackware 10.0 includes this as static by default in the IDE kernel... ie: it 'just works'.)
sound
modprobe sb io=0x220 irq=5 dma=3 dma16=5 mpu_io=0x330
(First ensure BIOS has the Sound1 configuration set for the Advanced / Audio Options Menu / Base I/O address option.  Also, enable Advanced / Audtio Options Menu / ESS Configuration.)
usb
modprobe usb-uhci or uhci module
(Or compile in as static.  Add modprobe hid to use mice, and:
 cd /dev/input
 mknod mice c 13 63
 You can now use gpm -t ps2 /dev/input/mice to use the USB mouse, which appears as a PS/2 one.)
power management
modprobe apm
(You can see battery data using 'cat /proc/apm'.  Sample output: "1.16 1.2 0x03 0x01 0x03 0x09 30% -1 ?".  0x01 is AC status (0x00 is battery), the percentage is your battery charge-level and ? is the estimated time you have left with that battery level (not displayed as I'm on AC)).
apmd
(You can run apmd to receive BIOS-initiated 'low battery' warnings.  Mostly this just puts power warnings in the system log files, but if you found something useful to warrant it you could also run arbitrary commands on receiving them.)

Applications
graphics viewing
zgv A great console SVGAlib graphics viewer.  Very fast, supporting useful things like mirror & flip, contrast, brightness, variable quality JPEG rendering, thumbnail-based image browsing.
photo downloads
gphoto2
I haven't actually got this to work yet but theoretically it will let me download my USB cameras' images to the system for zgv viewing or transfer over the network.


Other Hitachi Laptop & Linux Pages
Although I didn't really get much specifically out of any of these links, they may be useful.
www.suse.de/~cs/Laptop/Laptop.html (Hitachi M133T, Hitachi MX166T, Hitachi Vision Book Pro 7340, Hitachi Vision Book Pro 7775)
www.merl.com/people/yerazunis/linux_on_hitachi.html (Hitachi Visionbook Pro 7560)
www.cheesetoast.net/garinh/documents/hitachi6930.html (Hitachi Visionbook Pro Model 6930)
www.uniqsys.com/~crszczub/hitachi/ (Hitachi VisionBook Plus 5280)
For a couple more older models and some newer ones, see this list of Hitachi Linux experiences at tuxmobil.


Hosted at pratyeka.