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1. I downloaded this ISO Image that loads dos and has thinkpad configuration options for dos. ps2.exe is the name of the program on the iso. I disabled the onboard modem. I could not get it to work anyway, and got the exact configuration, irg, dma, io etc about the cs4232 sound card. Alternatively you could download and install the Thinkpad Configuration Tools. This is a linux tools that does basically the same thing. It is up to you to choose which to use.
2. It does not matter which kernel you use 2.4.x or 2.6.x Just make sure that you have cs4232 compiled as a module. If you compile the driver into the kernel you will only get clicks and static from the speakers.
3. I did not set the modules to load in /etc/rc.d/rc.modles or /etc/modules.conf. For some odd reason I get the same weird popping sounds as you do with the driver compiled in. I am not sure why. I found a script on the Linux on Laptops website and I use that to start sound. I created the script and then call it from local.start or rc.local depending on your distribution.
Here is the script
I hope that this helps out anyone with a Thinkpad 600 series.