Acer Timeline 3830
Exact hardware model (for me at least)
Acer Aspire (TimelineX) 3830TG
Core i5-2410M 2.3GHz
4GB DDR3 RAM
NVIDIA GeForce GT 540M
750 GB HDD
Atheros wifi (AR9287) b/g/n
(Probably some of these issues only for Arch Linux, e.g. Ubuntu handling automatically, (Ubuntu is great, but too fat for me) )
[ susu@archie ~ ]$ uname -a Linux archie 3.0-ARCH #1 SMP PREEMPT Wed Aug 17 21:55:57 CEST 2011 x86_64 Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-2410M CPU @ 2.30GHz GenuineIntel GNU/Linux
Really issues, hardware problems
Sound card issue
Problem: No sound
There is a (Ubuntu) bugreport about the problem: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/linux/+bug/783582
There are plenty of comments, but the first one that worked for me: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/linux/+bug/783582/comments/33
But if you are too lazy to click, or that page cannot be reached:
- download HDA_Analyzer from here: http://www.alsa-project.org/main/index.php/HDA_Analyzer
- run the script (as root)
Note: some plus package may be needed (python2, pygtk), and change the first line of the file:
EDIT: ALL instances "python" must be changed to "python2"... there are two entries, one at the top AND bottom:
os.system("python2 %s" % TMPDIR + '/' + FILES + ' ' + ' '.join(sys.argv[1:]))
(there must be more elegant solution, but it is pretty fast)
- run hda_analyzer.py (same workaround may need)
- find Node[0x1b] PIN and select
- on Node editor tab check EAPD
(and then my urxvt started to beep, I have to turn that off. UPDATE: I have added this: "/usr/bin/xset b off" to my .xinitrc)
Note: and then both internal speaker and headphone output worked, and also muting if I plug in my headphone (there were some comment at the bugreport about that "auto-muting" does not work).
Oh, of course, I have 3.0 kernel.
UPDATE: I wrote a script about this. That script a hack, not an elegant solution, at least it works. http://dl.dropbox.com/u/4602313/acer-3830-setter.py
Note: I also had to add my user to audio group to use sound card.
Screen backlight issue
Add kernel option acpi_osi=Linux
- Edit /boot/grub/menu.lst
- Find your system menu entry, and add acpi_osi=Linux kernel option
Mine menu entry looks like:
title Arch Linux root (hd0,6) kernel /boot/vmlinuz-linux root=/dev/sda7 ro acpi_osi=Linux initrd /boot/initramfs-linux.img
- reboot and pray
Note: tested with integrated Intel GPU only
But still an issue that I cannot set brightness value from software (from sysfs), only Fn + Left/Right arrows working.
- ATH9K driver issue
- Very inconsistent wireless performance and a lot of invalid misc, tx retries, and dropped packets.
The wireless card is detected as an AR9287 when in reality it is an AR5B97.
I've read just about everything under the sun on this topic. It appears that the only "functional" driver is ATH9K. The ATH5K driver will refuse to run with the hardware. Ndiswrapper doesn't seem to run the xp version of the driver. These issues are numerously documented and have existed for over a year. the linux wireless page seems to indicate that there is not much in the way of official bug developement in regards to these problems meaning no foreseeable fix. At the time of writing, 11-14-2011, this card has pretty poor support under linux giving you only 2 true fixes: buy a new wireless card or switch to a different os. Windows 7 has none of these issues with the card.
All that being said there are 2 mitigation strategies which minimally help:
1. Disabling hardware encryption
(post taken from launchpad: https://bugs.launchpad.net/archlinux/+source/linux/+bug/735171/comments/29)
"I googled the problem, and came up with this command; sudo -s echo "options ath9k nohwcrypt=1" > /etc/modprobe.d/ath9k.conf taken from here; http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1746326"
2. Disabling or limiting IPv6 support
Place the entry "alias net-pf10 off" into /etc/modprobe.d/modprobe.conf
GPU switch issue
At the moment I turned NVIDIA GPU off from BIOS, later I will provide some info about switching. Until then you can check on Bumblebee
See Wireless Setup.
TODO: create some profiling (and some iptables stuff also would be nice for that network profiling)
CPU frequency scaling
CPU frequency scaling can be accomplished with cpufrequtils, Laptop Mode Tools, and etc. once the acpi_cpufreq kernel module is loaded (e.g. by adding it to the Template:Codeline array in rc.conf and rebooting).