Here are some steps that I performed after installing Ubuntu 6.06 ("Dapper Drake") on a Dell Inspiron 1300. It might work for you, or it might not. It might work on other distributions and/or other machines, and it might not. This is mostly meant as a note for myself, but if you can make any use of it, feel free to do so.
By default, Ubuntu doesn't have password enabled for the root account. For security reasons you should enable this immediately after installation (this is not specific for Dell computers; should be done on all Ubuntu installations):
sudo passwd root
The apt-get repositories that are enabled by default only offer a very limited range of packages. I found that after doing the following, a very wide range of packages are available.
Edit /etc/apt/sources.list and make sure that the following lines are there and that they have no # in front of them:
deb http://dk.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ dapper main restricted deb-src http://dk.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ dapper main restricted deb http://dk.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ dapper-updates main restricted deb-src http://dk.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ dapper-updates main restricted deb http://dk.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ dapper universe deb-src http://dk.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ dapper universe deb http://dk.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ dapper-backports main restricted universe multiverse deb-src http://dk.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ dapper-backports main restricted universe multiverse deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu dapper-security main restricted deb-src http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu dapper-security main restricted deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu dapper-security universe deb-src http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu dapper-security universe deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu dapper multiverse deb-src http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu dapper multiverse deb http://packages.freecontrib.org/ubuntu/plf/ dapper free non-free deb-src http://packages.freecontrib.org/ubuntu/plf/ dapper free non-free
The driver for the wireless network card in the Inspiron 1300 doesn't come with a Linux driver, and there is no such to find. Fortunately, the ndiswrapper project makes it possible to use a Windows driver on Linux. They have a great guide on how to make it work on Ubuntu.
Note that the Ubuntu guide tells you to install the drivers as explained in their general installation guide section "Install your Windows drivers". In fact you also need to perform the steps "Load module" and "Running at Startup" in that same general installation guide (linked from the Ubuntu guide).
For easy reference for Inspiron 1300, the PCI ID of the wireless network card in my machine is 14e4:4318. It worked for me with this driver (file bcmwl5.inf). But follow the guide mentioned above anyway, since the card in your Inspiron 1300 might be another one! Here's the lspci output that I got when I followed the guide:
$ lspci (many irrelevant devices skipped) 0000:02:03.0 Network controller: Broadcom Corporation: Unknown device 4318 (rev 02) $ lspci -n (many irrelevant devices skipped) 0000:02:03.0 0280: 14e4:4318 (rev 02)
Most likely you will only be able to select 1024×768 (which isn't a widescreen resolution, so things get all distorted) from the Gnome screen resolution utility. Here is what I did to enable the native resolution 1280×800:
Download and install 915resolution, which is a hack to the Intel graphics chip driver that enables widescreen support:
sudo apt-get install 915resolution
Reboot and the system will start up in 1280×800 (or you should be able to select it from the screen resolution utility).
sudo apt-get install libdvdcss2Or, alternatively:
sudo sh /usr/share/doc/libdvdread3/examples/install-css.sh
Use this guide to be able to connect to the Internet through a Bluetooth/GPRS enabled mobile phone (not yet tested!).