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Ubuntu 8.10 on Acer Aspire 4315 100508Ci

This laptop comes with a hobbled installation of Ubuntu 7.10 in some countries. Otherwise it has Windows Vista Home Basic and was originally marketed as Windows Vista Capable

Hardware Configuration and Status

Video: Intel Corporation Mobile GM965/GL960 Integrated Graphics Controller [8086:2a02] (rev 03) (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])
Working out of the box with full 3D acceleration with compositing. All Ubuntu Compiz/Fusion effects included.

Audio: Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) HD Audio Controller [8086:284b] (rev 03)
Working out of the box except for the internal microphone. The mic support (or the mic itself) seems unstable.

Ethernet:Marvell Technology Group Ltd. 88E8039 PCI-E Fast Ethernet Controller [11ab:4353] (rev 15)
Working out of the box

Wireless:0Atheros Communications Inc. AR242x 802.11abg Wireless PCI Express Adapter [168c:001c] (rev 01)
Working on post install with madwifi-ng or ndiswrapper. Does not work with Ubuntu-supplied madwifi.

Modem: Connexant HSFModem (included in the soundcard.)
Not Functional - Installing the Linuxant hsfmodem driver disables all sound and renders the laptop unbootable. There is no likely fix for this closed-source, proprietary, driver in the near future.

Buttons:



ACPI: All ACPI functions work properly except suspend to RAM, which forces a reboot when it tries to wake. OTOH: The cold-boot (to functioning desktop) time is less than 30 seconds. This is about the same time as wake from suspend in Vista.

Acer Notes

Acer include documentation with the linux edition of this laptop listing the modem, microphone, and buttons as "disabled due to limitations of linux". On closer examination, it is the Acer factory linux install which is deficient.

Initial Installation

Used the desktop CD and selected the guided install using the whole disk. Accepted the defaults. No errors, no special options used.

Post Install

See Acer-Hardy web page for details.

Conclusion

Many people recall the wee Honda CRX subcompact sports car. With Ubuntu 7.10 installed, the 4315 is cheap, light and zippy in the same way. People used to XP or Vista will see a marked improvement. People used to linux will wonder what happened. With Ubuntu 8.04 it's like the same car, with low slung suspension, leather seats, hot custom bodywork, and a V8-turbo new under the hood. If the sunroof, cigarette lighter, and radio don't work ... who cares!

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