Saturday, 2 May 2009

Windows 7 Install on a Toshiba Tecra S1 M1.7GHz 512MB

The laptop in question is one of our shop machines that got shuffled home to be a basic e-mail, web browsing, and occasional Word document machine.

It sits on a pneumatic stool in the corner of the kitchen’s dining area providing some convenience as our office space is in the basement.

The Toshiba Tecra S1 is configured as follows:

  • Intel Pentium M 1.7GHz.
  • 512MB of dedicated RAM.
  • ATI Radeon Mobility 9000.
  • 40GB hard drive.
  • Intel A/B/G Wireless and 100Mbit LAN.
  • Toshiba Part Number: PT831C-67CSU.

This was a Canadian only version that can be difficult to find drivers for at times.

During the initial install after deleting the existing Windows XP Pro partition on the hard drive, Windows 7 wanted to create its own 100MB partition before the system partition we designated.

09-05-02 Tecra S1 - Windows 7 System Reserved Partition

Note that the 100MB partition is actually set to “Active” in the above screenshot.

Once installed, we needed to manually install the audio, cardbus, SD Card reader, and Intel WiFi drivers.

The ATI driver for the Mobility 9000 would not allow Aero transparency as it was not a WDDM based driver.

 09-05-02 Tecra S1 - Windows 7 Troubleshooter - Aero not supported on current driver

The above screenshot was produced by one of the new Windows 7 Troubleshooting Packs. In this case, it was the transparency and video problems troubleshooter. Just type “Aero” in the Start Search and the troubleshooter will be one of the top results.

We tried to force a newer ATI Radeon Mobility driver to see if it would pick up. It did not.

So, now that we have the laptop’s setup pretty much complete, we will now see how it handles an Office 2007 install.

The system’s performance is almost on par with the previous XP Pro install. Given that there is only 512MB of RAM in it, we will see if there will be a need to bump it up to 1GB as Monique is the person who will be trained on the use of Windows 7 and its principle user from now on.

If Monique mentions that the laptop has slowed down since the Windows 7 install, then we will upgrade the RAM. Her Windows 7 experience will be a good gauge of how most of our client’s users will adapt to and adopt the new operating system.

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

*All Mac on SBS posts will not be written on a Mac until we replace our now missing iMac! (previous blog post)

Windows Live Writer


Rashan said...

WEll I hope u get the driver for this system. I have a similar laptop(toshiba Tecra S1) and I also installed windows 7. but all the dirvers installed except the chipset and the Audio drivers. SO I'm looking for the chipset drivers for this laptop. The drivers for vista would definitely work on windows 7. If u get the drivers by chance please email me.
thanks and good luck. Rashan

gildenman said...

How did you get w7 to work on the Tecra S1?
I have BIOS v2.50 on mine. W7 installs, reboots, but then every boot after a while BSOD STOP 0xa with a error like "ACPI is too old, please get BIOS update."

How did you get past that?
Many thanks.

Anonymous said...

I have the same Problem as gildenman. ACPI error while booting W7. Anybody a tip ?

Philip Elder SBS MVP said...

We updated the BIOS on the S1 before installing Windows 7 just in case.

Reflash the BIOS using the latest version from Toshiba's Web site.

Enter the BIOS after the flash to make sure that the setting is turned on.


gildenman said...

I got round the problem. I thought it's gotta be some tiny thing missing from the BIOS which is probably not that important. So I guessed a different BIOS might get it to work. I didn't want to modify the BIOS permanently, so found this which is used to boot vista with an alternative BIOS to get it to activivate:

First I tried the softmod CD. Booted from the CD and let that boot my windows 7 install. Worked prefectly.
Then I followed the instructions and installed it on the windows 7 partition. Works great too.
I kinda guessed really, but the soft BIOS hack to boot vista, works around it! :)

Ric. said...

anyone get tecra s1 runing on windows 7 with audio drivers working? i cant get audio work... :( ,, cant get aero works either... no display driver?
thanks any help

Philip Elder SBS MVP said...


We managed to get everything to work.

The video hardware is not WDDM compliant, so yes there are no Aero features.

I will try and post a screenshot of the Device Manager.


Anonymous said...

with 1gb the system crashes. with 512mb it works. now i install the drivers i get

gildenman said...

You get what?
I have 1GB and it works fine.
Did you use the softmod hack?
Or were you lucky getting it to work with the BIOS?

Anonymous said...

with one gig the s1 crashes. bsod acpi not compatible. with 512 it works. sound, wlan and the ati9000m with catalystdriver.
what do u mean with softmod?


gildenman said...

Ah ok. I had same problem with 1gb. Never tried 512mb.
See my post above where I mention softmod. That gets around the bsod with 1gb.

Anonymous said...

fine, it works, many thanx to you.

green said...

i manage to install windows 7 without any problems (after a bios upgrade).

...did anyone manage to find the proper drivers for the audio and intel chipset?

ShiroTheSniper said...

I would love to know how to make work the audio in Windows 7 with a Tecra S1. It didn't work for me too :( And I tried many drivers :(

green said...

no audio driver for the Tecra S1? That sucks!

What about the intel chipset? any luck there?


gildenman said...

You've actually looked on Intel's site for the 855PM chipset drivers?

Tob said...

Hy together,
I got a S1 too and installed Win7. I found most of the drivers except the Radeon 9000. Although I didn't get PowerSaver and some other Tools working with the result I couldn't adjust the display brightness. Does anyone has a hint for me?

Greetings TOB

gildenman said...

Think windows update did it for me.
Doesn't it for you?

Anonymous said...

Three years after the last post...
Yes the Tecra S1 is quite old.
But I love the design, the silver champagne lid and frame, the good keyboard. And I have got one which was neglected by me for years and so it is almost unused.
Sound driver came through Windows Update. XDDM compatible graphics from somewhere like Mediafire (Thinkpad enthusiasts have the same problem with old ATI chips).
Screen brightness, yes, it is not obvious.
You have to install the Toshiba hotkey utilities for XP and to accept the unsigned driver. Wifi works with an original Intel driver for Vista. Okay Power Saver.
Problematic. But with Rightmark CPU utility there is even automatic
switching between 600MHz and max possible. And for me important, there is an Touchpad driver, which allows to disable tapping.
Okay, I have to admit, I spent some evenings. But it is even possible to install W2K on a Libretto 110.