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So it was about time, and I had to renew my old trust Acer V5 15" i5 Laptop. After digging and digging I decided to get an HP OMEN 17.3" i7-8750H Laptop. Although it is hardware built for gamers, the fact that it has 12 CPU cores makes it really attractive for coders and people who need power for other things than playing.

I will write here how I managed to make it work almost flawlessly under Linux Mageia 7.

HP Omen Laptop Specs

So, here it is what the websites claim this laptop has:

  • Display: 17.3" Full HD (1920x1080) IPS anti-glare WLED-backlit
  • Processor: Intel® Core™ i7-8750H (2.2 GHz base frequency, up to 4.1 GHz with Intel® Turbo Boost Technology, 9 MB cache, 6 cores)
  • Memory: 12 GB DDR4-2666 SDRAM (1 x 4 GB, 1 x 8 GB)
  • Storage: 128 GB SSD, 1 TB HDD ( 7200 RPM )
  • Graphic: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1050 Ti (4 GB GDDR5 dedicated)
  • Connectivity: 1 HDMI 2.0
  • 1 headphone/microphone combo
  • 1 microphone-in
  • 1 Mini DisplayPort™
  • 1 RJ-45
  • 1 USB 3.1 Type-C™ (Data Transfer up to 5 Gb/s, DP1.2, HP Sleep and Charge)
  • 3 USB 3.1 Gen 1 (1 HP Sleep and Charge)
  • Expansion Slots: 1 multi-format SD media card reader
  • Battery type: 8-cell, 86 Wh Li-ion
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Home
  • Optical Drive: No

Before You Wipe out Windows for Good

  1. Take note of the recognized hardware, interrupts, ports, everything you can.
  2. Upgrade your BIOS. When I got this laptop, there was an update. You will need to go to the HP Support website and download it.

Installing Linux Mageia in Your HP Omen Laptop

The installation is really straight forward. No big deal. The issue is later when we start configuring things the installer didn't do.

Grub Parameters

If you boot your laptop with the default settings, it is very likely it will freeze. Do not panic. Add the following parameter to your grub: pci=routeirq. I found this the hard way. If you must know, it fixes the load of the wifi (module rtw88) and the Nvidia (module nvidia-current).

Nvidia or Nouveau?

Go for Nvidia proprietary modules. You will need to blacklist the nouveau module. Edit the /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist-compat file and add the following line: blacklist nouveau. After that type: depmod -a and after that you will need to recreate the Dracut image by typing dracut --force.

You may want to install bumblebee in order to take advantage of your Nvidia card. Here it is a little side effect, do not let bumblebee to start when booting, it freezes. But if you call it later, it works. I will update this article if I find a solution.

X

X will not recognize your keyboard and touchpad right away. You will need to force some drivers. Put the following files in /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/

00-keyboard.conf

# Read and parsed by systemd-localed. It's probably wise not to edit this file
# manually too freely.
Section "InputClass"
Identifier "system-keyboard"
MatchIsKeyboard "on"
Option "XkbModel" "pc105"
Option "XkbOptions" "compose:rwin"
Option "XkbVariant" "alt-intl"
Option "XkbLayout" "us"
EndSection

10-synaptics.conf

Section "InputClass"
Identifier "Touchpad" # required
MatchIsTouchpad "yes" # required
Driver "synaptics" # required
Option "MinSpeed" "0.5"
Option "MaxSpeed" "1.0"
Option "AccelFactor" "0.075"
Option "TapButton1" "1"
Option "TapButton2" "2" # multitouch
Option "TapButton3" "3" # multitouch
Option "VertTwoFingerScroll" "1" # multitouch
Option "HorizTwoFingerScroll" "1" # multitouch
Option "VertEdgeScroll" "1"
Option "CoastingSpeed" "8"
Option "CornerCoasting" "1"
Option "CircularScrolling" "1"
Option "CircScrollTrigger" "7"
Option "EdgeMotionUseAlways" "1"
Option "LBCornerButton" "8" # browser "back" btn
Option "RBCornerButton" "9" # browser "forward" btn
EndSection

40-libinput.conf

Section "InputClass"
Identifier "libinput touchpad catchall"
MatchIsTouchpad "on"
MatchDevicePath "/dev/input/event*"
Driver "libinput"
Option "Tapping" "on"
EndSection

Special Thanks 

To Jean and his articles in https://jeanbruenn.info/2018/04/01/omen-hp-with-linux/ which it helped me to figure out some parts. He bought a similar Laptop, not the same so not of his findings applied to me.

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