This HOWTO describes the installation of FreeBSD 6.2 on a Thinkpad R50e. For your convenience, I also included parts of the configuration files you might consider useful. All in all, the R50e is a perfect notebook for FreeBSD. Every important device is usable, allowing you to be productive without major annoyances.
There is a small partition containing something like a rescue system from IBM. To make things simpler, you might decide to keep it. But removing it and using the whole hard disk for your installation should not hurt, either (this is my personal experience).
The actual installation process is really straightforward. Install FreeBSD any way you want.
The WLAN chipset driver is now included in the kernel. Simply add the
following line to
/boot/loader.conf in order to enable it:
Caveat: The driver version I used had some problems when connecting to hidden access points. I recommend turning the SSID broadcast on. Since you, being security-minded, are using WPA2 anyway, this won't decrease your security.
Assuming you want to use ACPI/powerd, there are several things that have
to be configured first. Automatic CPU frequency adjustment has to be
set up via
powerd_enable="YES" powerd_flags="-b adaptive -a max" performance_cx_lowest="C2" performance_cpu_freq="1399" economy_cx_lowest="C3" economy_cpu_freq="NONE"
These settings seem reasonable to me. However, you might want to change
them if you have other objectives. I was told that SpeedStep should be
disabled on a R50e, so add
The ACPI configuration is quite fast, too. These lines belong into
kern.timecounter.hardware=i8254 debug.acpi.do_powerstate=1 hw.acpi.lid_switch_state=S3 hw.acpi.standby_state=S1 hw.acpi.suspend_state=S3 hw.acpi.sleep_button_state=S3 hw.acpi.sleep_delay=3 hw.acpi.reset_video=0
This allows your Thinkpad to suspend when you close the lid. To enable the
Thinkpad keys that control suspension, add
acpi_ibm_load="YES" to your
/boot/loader.conf. You might also want to take a look at
deskutils/tpb. This program is a port that allows you to redefine
the (mostly unused) Thinkpad keys.
enables the sound card.
Some files might be of general interest: