How do I get a better working Ubuntu Mate on my new laptop?

Hi all!

Today I got a new laptop and decided to install Ubuntu Mate on it, because the online reviews looked very good. Now, I am not new to Ubuntu or Linux. In general the installations I used worked pretty much out of the box for me. Though, unfortunately this time not.

My on board wireless connection isn´t working, but does work when I connect an external USB-wireless solution to the laptop. Same story with the touchpad. It doesn´t respond, though an usb connected mouse makes the pointer move fine. Finally, the video quality. It looks like the screen only uses 256 colors or less. The additional driver that Ubuntu Mate suggested unfortunately didn´t do the trick to make things work properly.

So, my two questions are basically how I get to know which hardware I have on board of my new system and how I get it to work properly?

Thanks in advance for your help.


Your first port of call would be to install "system profiler and benchmark". Once installed, open it up and it lists all of your hardware similar to MS windows hardware list. see below:

You can find it in the software center.

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Thanks! That was helpful for the first step. It looks like I have to look at these trouble makers, right?

Realtek RTL8101E/RTL8102E PCI Express

Intel Atom Processor D2xxx/N2xxx

Touch pad
Intel NM10/IHC7 Family USB UHCI controller

With these details, I already have tried to install the latest Realtek drivers. Although the installation process didn´t return any errors, the wlan still doesn´t show up when I restart the system.

For about getting the video right, I want to try this solution:
but I don´t know where I can find the HorizSync and VertRefresh settings of my monitor in Mate.

The touch pad suddenly seem to work, although I didn´t alter any settings. I had disconnected my wireless usb solution though. Could it be that there is some kind of interference between the usb ports that causes some kind of block?

Additional help would be highly appreciated. Thanks in advance.


There is one thing you could do if you have not already done it. It relies on the fact that the original Ubuntu Mate ISO is having tweaks and improvements made to it all of the time. However, these are written as updates and upgrades to the system and so you need to fully update and upgrade your system after installation. If you have not already done so, run the following commands in a terminal:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

Well, I thought the extensive software update that I performed yesterday after the installation was already enough, but the update and upgrade I performed now still did make a bunch of changes. However nothing positive happened towards my wlan and video troubles.

In fact I got a critical error during the start up process. Mate-panel had crashed. To be sure all was still okay, I therefore reinstalled the mate-panel package.

While investigating further, I did stumbled upon the Yocto Project. It supports exactly the motherboard that I have in my laptop, but I have no clue yet how to integrate their Board Support Packages into Mate, if that even would be possible at all…

So apart from a properly working touch pad, unfortunately I am still stuck…


I think I found the answer. The graphics on the Intel Atom Processor D2xxx/N2xxx are only supported on 32-bit versions of Ubuntu. So, Iĺl give that a try to see if it then works fine.


On the wireless, there could be a problem. If you could post the results of

sudo rfkill list

For the record, mine looks like

0: phy0: Wireless LAN
Soft blocked: no
Hard blocked: no
4: hci0: Bluetooth
Soft blocked: yes
Hard blocked: no

If there is a "yes" under "soft blocked", it means that the radio is switched off in software; if there is a "yes" under "hard blocked", it means that it is turned off in hardware (i.e. through a physical switch).

(And the output for my laptop is correct - I have BT switched off in the MATE options).

In passing, it is amazing that you got an image on the screen given that the wrong "flavour" of UM was installed :relaxed:

If the Atom processor is 32-bit you will need to do a fresh re-install with the 32-bit (usually labeled 386 or i386) version of Ubuntu. This will likely correct all your problems.

The Touchpad coming to life with USB software updates is not surprising, since it is a USB device. Your keyboard, camera, and most other hardware likely are as well.

After you get the correct Ubuntu-Mate 32-bit version installed - if any problems remain, simply press “ESC” while the computer is booting - this will dismiss the pretty Ubuntu screen and show you the loading process flashing by on the monitor. You can find a hardcopy of this in /var/log/kernel. Go to the b ottom of the file, then back up to the first message from your most recent bootup. You can go down line by line, find any errors, cut and paste them into Startpage or other search tool and address them.

Starting with any USB and driver errors will often fix numerous problems with one soultion. Make certain you have the appropriate video drivers loaded for your machine to address the 256 colours prob.

Hope this helps!