Dell E521, Linux, Freezing USB Mouse Problem Resolved

I hit a snag this past week while testing a few beta releases with the latest kernels. I bought an AMD X2 3800 Dell E521 with a Gig of RAM for US $409 and free shipping during a dealnews.com dealfest…I feel I got a good deal. So I’ve been waiting to put my favorite distro, PCLinuxOS on it…waiting for the release of .94 due out sometime this month. In the meantime, Windows XP has been on that computer and I’ve been dual booting distros I’d like to try.

The snag I hit came when booting into just about any 2.6.X environment in Linux…the mouse would be fine one minute, and then a few minutes into things the mouse would freeze. This is a USB Logitech mouse…and I found it odd that it would freeze up but the printer (HP PSC 1210v) would work just fine.

After a bit of research when pointed in the right direction of the kernel developer for PCLinuxOS, I came to realize that I wasn’t alone. Many on Ubuntu’s forums and also Linuxquestions, and Linuxforums had reported the same problems…most without any resolution. The good news is that I found a resolution to my problems :D

Update the BIOS! I did a major forehead smack when it was the last thing I thought of when it should have been the first. After updating the BIOS to the latest and greatest version from dell.com, I was back in business with no freezes of my USB Mouse. Hopefully, if you also run a Dell E521, you won’t bash your head repeatedly against the wall like I did.

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  • Rakhesh

    Hi there!

    Just wondering. In PCLinuxOS are you able to copy files off VCDs. As in, insert a VCD, mount it someplace, and then copy the .dat files from there.

    I tried Fedora 6 and openSUSE 10.2 (using GNOME on both) — neither of them let me copy files off VCDs. Downgrading to a kernel before 2.6.17 lets me do so, so I was wondering if PCLinuxOS too is affected by this. I plan on checking out PCLinuxOS .94 and wanted to know this before I do so.

    Thanks,
    Rakhesh

  • http://linux-blog.org devnet

    I’ve never had any problems with .93…I’m not sure about 2007 though (the latest beta release).

    Honestly, I think it is really about which application you use to rip the VCD. For example, you can use vcdxrip from the VCDImager tool suite to get the files you need: http://freshmeat.net/projects/vcdimager/

  • Rakhesh

    Thanks. Yup, .93 worked fine for me too. I don’t use any application for ripping (though, I guess I’ll have to start using one soon). I just mount the VCD and copy the .dat manually using “cp”. Used to work till the previous versions of most distros; but nowadays it doesn’t seem to.

    Have downloaded 2007. Will check with that. After downloading the huge ISO I realized that it might not be possible to upgrade this to the final. :( So now I am having second thoughts installing it. Don’t want to re-install everything and lose my config changes. Hmmm …

    The screenshots and reviews seem ravishing though! :)

    Thanks,
    Rakhesh

  • Bios Update Won’t solve the problem

    I’ve the lastest Bios here but it still freezes. Just to let you know.
    Mandriva 2007

  • Charles

    Using Kernel 2.6.20.4 I have no mouse or keyboards freezing anymore.
    Also I’m usin the bios release 1.1.0.5
    Thanks

  • Alan Ratfor

    Dell Bios 1.1.4 will *not* solve the Dell E521 Athlon 3600+USB problems.

  • http://linux-blog.org devnet

    Alan,

    Perception is where we differ here. I know it solved my problems because I have 2 Dell E521’s and with different rpm based distros using the same kernel, I had problems with freezing mice/keyboard. Upgrading the BIOS and they disappeared. It could be that the distro you are using has a problem with USB. For me, my problems are solved.

  • Jeemy

    sfwre