Lenovo Thinkpad X250 (Elbopeep)
To buy this computer, select your ArcaOS license type and press "Add to Cart". Scroll down to Accessories to see optional items to add to this computer.
This Lenovo Thinkpad model is powerful, yet at 2.9 pounds, this computer is a light weight portable computer. It is small enough to fit nicely on an airline tray table. IBM Thinkpads are top quality laptop computers. The standard 12.5 inch HD screen is the best in the class. The ArcaOS installation provides as complete support as possible on a modern laptop.
This laptop computer is configured to boot ArcaOS. No other operating system is installed, nor are instructions provided to install one without harming the ArcaOS installation. The ArcaOS installation provides as complete OS/2 support as possible on a modern laptop.
These are some useful additions you can buy to customize this computer. If more customizations are needed see the section named Custom orders below.
There is not yet support for the internal WiFi. I use the Mango Travel Router with this laptop to access local WiFi or my phone's hot spot. Mango comes with everything you need to connect to an access point.
Mango Travel Router
Mango Travel Router: $49.00 USD
In the past, I have also used a TP-Link AC750 Wireless Travel Router, an Asus RP-N12 Wireless N300 Range Extender, and a TP-Link Nano Router. I include a folder of URL links to the admin pages of each of these routers to make it easy to set up the first time.
Instructions and details about external WiFi: Travel Routers
This computer is compatible with Thinkpad Ultrabase Dock 40A1 and 40A2. ArcaOS cannot dock/undock a running computer. You must shutdown the computer when docking and undocking. The 40A1 dock has 6 USB ports, VGA, DVI, audio and Ethernet.
Lenovo Ultrabase Dock
Lenovo Ultrabase Dock 40A1: $90.00 USD
If a dock is included, here's how it works: The computer is set to the native screen of 1920 x 1080. If your monitor is the same, then nothing needs to be done docking and undocking. If the computer monitor is different than 1920 x 1080, then the screen resolution can be adjusted to the optimal values. For example, I tested with a computer monitor with a resolution of 1920 x 1200. When I plug into the dock, the computer changes to 1600 x 1200. I enter 1920 x 1200 into the screen applet and reboot for optimum resolution. When I leave the dock, the computer switches back to 1920 x 1080, and no further action is needed.
Hard drive upgrade
The hard drive can be upgraded to a 2 TB drive. Either a hard disk or an SSD is available to upgrade.
Hard drive upgrade
USB Floppy Drive
This external USB Floppy drive can be used to read and write 720K and 1.44M 3 1/2 inch floppy disks.
USB Floppy Drive
USB Floppy Drive: $50.00 USD
If you want to buy a customized version of this computer, fill out an order form and submit it to Blonde Guy. Blonde Guy will review your order and send you an invoice, payable using PayPal or any major credit card. If you prefer to pay by check, note that in the notes field of the order form, and I will e-mail you an invoice payable by check.
Enter the customizations you want on the computer in the notes portion of the order form.
Model: Thinkpad X250
Model number: 20CLS1TR00
Year introduced: 2015
CPU: Intel Core i5-5300U (2.30 GHz)
Screen: 12.5 inch Color LCD, 1366 x 768 pixels
RAM: 4 GB
Hard drive: Toshiba 128 GB SSD (SATA)
Optional hard/solid state drive: 2000 GB SATA
Optical drive: None
Intel HD Graphics 5500
Intel Pro/1000 PL 10/100/1000 network adapter using MultiMac32 E1000B driver
USB Ports: 2 USB 2.0 Controllers: 1 USB 3.0 Controllers: 1
Height: 0.8 inch
Width: 12.0 inches
Depth: 8.2 inches
Weight: 2.88 lbs
Power consumption is 10 Watts, measured with the computer booted to the desktop. This computer consumes less than 1 Watt if it's plugged in, but switched off. When charging a depleted battery, it consumes up to 37 Watts.
The built-in webcam can be used with WebSee software. WebSee requires iso-synchronous transfers over USB, so Arca Noae USB 11.17 is installed, rather than the newer USB 12.x because iso-synchronous transfers are not yet available in USB 12.x.
The laptop can use any memory left over from 32-bit usage as a RAM drive. For 8 GB RAM models, this RAM drive has 4.7 GB, and is formatted HPFS. For 4 GB models, the RAM drive is not configured. If activated, the RAM drive would have 700 MB.
This laptop boots to the desktop in under 60 seconds. That's important, because suspend/resume does not work. To make up for that, the laptop can do a clean power down when the lid is closed.
There is no ArcaOS support for the bluetooth or fingerprint reader. Support for the internal WiFi is under development at Arca Noae.
The disk is partitioned to provide a bootable operating system volume and a bootable installer. Space is left for addtional bootable volumes. User data is stored on a separate volume.
This is the layout for the 128 GB SSD. The Air-Boot boot manager is installed to select the volume to be started.
|Volume Name||Disk Format||Drive Letter||Volume Size||Disk Name|
|ArcaOS-Q||JFS||Q:||10,001 MB||Internal 128 SSD|
|Data||JFS||D:||100,100 MB||Internal 128 SSD|
|Recovery||FAT16||X:||2,000 MB||Internal 128 SSD|
This is the layout for a Seagate Hybrid 2 GB hard drive.
|Volume Name||Disk Format||Drive Letter||Volume Size||Disk Name|
|ArcaOS installation||FAT16||X:||2,000 MB||2 TB SSHD|
|ArcaOS-Q||JFS||Q:||10,001 MB||2 TB SSHD|
|Data||JFS||D:||1,847,749 MB||2 TB SSHD|
ArcaOS 5.0.6 (Aug 31, 2020) is the version used for this installation.
This table reports the SysBench 0.9.5 benchmarks for this computer. You can download SysBench 0.9.5 here: http://hobbes.nmsu.edu/
|CPU floating point-marks||764|
- Operating system: ArcaOS 5.0.6
- Suntan Special is included with each computer. All applications that are pre-installed by Blonde Guy can be kept up to date using Suntan Special.
- Apache OpenOffice is installed. OpenOffice has good compatibility with Microsoft Office documents.
- The Tabbed PDF Viewer and Lucide are installed to provide viewing of PDF files.
- Computer maintenance programs include Suntan Special, a trial version of DFSee, Sysbench to measure the speed of the computer, PCI to scan the system hardware and SystemInfo to view the entire computer configuration. Smartmontools is installed to view drives.
- RPM/YUM, a software configuration framework, is installed. Suntan Special acts as a layer over RPM/YUM to replace the detailed knowledge of how to install and configure software using YUM with pre-packaged application installations.
- The FAT32 file system is installed.
- Firefox and Seamonkey web browsers are installed. Qupzilla web browser, based on Qt and Web Kit, is also installed.
- Thunderbird, SeaMonkey and PMMail are installed to provide a choice of e-mail client program.
- Java (OpenJDK 6.00) is installed.
- VLC media player is installed to play back most video file types and some commercial DVDs.
- PM123 music player is provided to support MP3 (and more) playback needs.
- Cameraderie provides support for digital cameras.
- I use rsync, which is a mirroring program, to keep several copies of my data drive. The rsync program copies only files that have changed, added or removed when it updates a copy of the data drive.
- 4os2 provides an alternative to the OS/2 command prompt with more features.
- A number of fonts are added. Thanks to Alex Taylor for developing some OS/2 specific fonts. Liberation and Deja Vu fonts are also added to support some programs.
- Also asscoedit, vncserver, PMWipe are installed.
- WebSee webcam software is installed. This gives limited webcam support.
- HelpDesk client software by OS/2 VOICE is installed to permit remote administration tasks to be performed by Blonde Guy. Access to the computer is controlled by the user, not by Blonde Guy.
I use Suntan Special to install the software on all Blonde Guy computers. Suntan Special software can be used to install all updates to the system and its applications and to install additional applications. When newer versions of software are released, Suntan Special can keep your Blonde Guy computer up to date.
Recovery USB stick
The recovery USB stick supplied is a bootable ArcaOS USB stick with a backup of the hard drive as delivered. You can boot the machine from USB stick, and perform maintenance functions. The maintenance folder is available on the recovery USB stick. The factory backup is stored in the \Factory directory. The backups are simple zip files. You can use 7z or unzip to extract some or all of the files in a backup.
DFSee is a generic disk, partition and filesystem utility for maintenance and data-recovery. It supports partition tables (FDISK, LVM), FAT, FAT32, HPFS, NTFS, and partly JFS, EXT2/3 or REISER filesystems. DFSee is commercial software which requires a license key for continued use.
This section documents what I did to get this computer to work under ArcaOS. It is intended to show what goes into this computer, and also as a guide to the user who wants to build it himself.
The installed BIOS is 1.33 and the EC is 1.04. The current BIOS is 1.35 and EC is 1.04. I decided not to update the BIOS to the current level with the BIOS update CD. The video displays on an external monitor without issues.
I made the following changes to the default BIOS settings. Then I powered the Thinkpad down and up.
- Config->USB->USB 3.0 Mode = Auto (Disabled if USB 11.17 is used)
- Config->Keyboard/Mouse->Trackpad = Disabled (I don't like trackpad)
- Config->Display->Boot Display Device = Analog VGA (The video displays on an external monitor without issues.)
- Startup->UEFI/Legacy Boot = Both (need both to boot BIOS update, otherwise Legacy Only is fine.)
- Startup->UEFI/Legacy Boot - UEFI/Legacy Boot Priority = Legacy First
- Startup->UEFI/Legacy Boot - CSM Support = Yes
Hard drive preparation
The Lenovo Hardware Maintenance Manual says to turn off the internal battery before opening the case, then remove 8 screws and pry 8 tabs to open the entire back of the case. The drive was easily replaced.
I booted the ArcaOS USB stick, and in System Maintenance, I prepared the hard drive. Then I used AOSBOOT to install the ArcaOS installer on the hard drive as drive X: (FAT16, 2000 MB).
I installed one bootable volume, P:. The P: drive has a Custom installation that is on the minimal side.
Sound is working normally on the laptop. Audio works well, but external speakers or headphones are required. The following modification is needed to enable sound. An unreleased Uniaud driver from Arca Noae provides sound through the internal speakers.
A fix included in ACPI 3.23.10 and later allows DOS Full-Screen to work. Alt-Home from a DOS Full-Screen then allows a DOS Window to work.
Using Suntan Special I run sequences ArcaOS50, apps, games, dev and cleanup. This is saved as the Factory image. This is normally what would be supplied on the computer.
The built-in video is supported by the Panorama video driver version 1.14 or later.
If am external monitor, then this is how it will work. The computer is set to the native screen of 1366 x 768. If your monitor is the same, then nothing needs to be done to switch to and from an external monitor. If the computer monitor is different than 1366 x 768, then the screen resolution can be adjusted to the optimal values. For example, I tested with a computer monitor with a resolution of 1920 x 1200. When I switch to my external monitor, the computer changes to 1600 x 1200. I enter 1920 x 1200 into the screen applet and reboot for optimum resolution. When I switch to the built in display, the same action is needed.
Back with cover on
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Copyright 2020 by Blonde Guy