Update 6/3/2009: Follow the instructions here at PenDriveLinux.com for Ubuntu 9.04, it works with the Dell XPS 720 very well. The only odd thing is that I have to re-enable the NVidia drivers between reboots. When you do enable it, don’t reboot. Just log out and let the auto login go and you can use the full Compiz effects.
I run Vista 64 bit on my XPS
700 720. Looking at how it boots up, I am not sure that Microsoft will work with another operating system. And I do use this computer for work-ish *cough* games *cough* reasons.
I’ve just downloaded the 64 bit iso image for Ubuntu 7.10 beta and burnt it to CD. I’m installing the software but not on my hard drives, I’m installing it onto a 2 GB USB memory stick I have lying around.
This should let me install what I want to play with without me having to take the plunge exactly on this computer. I just have to remember to hit F12 when I boot up so the BIOS presents me with a boot menu.
As the install image booted up it played with my monitor settings and set it for 1680×1050. That’s not bad; last time it insisted on 1024×768. The sound card was not installed for the live session but that’s probably fine for now.
It’s installing right now as I enter this; I’m using Firefox in the live session. It’s going slow and I’m tailing /var/log/messages in another window to see if the drive suddenly dies.
Once I have it working off the USB drive entirely then I’ll mess with the drivers to see if I can get sound and Compiz working at 1920×1200 with full acceleration.