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Toshiba U940 Debian Setup

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Toshiba U940 Debian Setup

These are my notes about how to get a Toshiba U940 running under Debian 7.0 "Wheezy".

Overall the machine is functional but far from a 100% well supported. I should check with a newer kernel.

Running with Linux 3.2.0-4-amd64 #1 SMP Debian 3.2.41-2 x86_64 GNU/Linux


Characteristics

  • Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-3337U CPU @ 1.80GHz (2 physical, reported as 4 due to HT)
  • hardware virtualization
  • 32Gb SSD
  • 1Tb spinning disk
  • 8Gb RAM
  • 3 USB ports (2 of which are USB 3.0)
  • HDMI (with VGA data)
  • Ethernet
  • SD reader
  • Wi-Fi

NOTE: This laptop has no bluetooth

Output of lspci:

00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation 3rd Gen Core processor DRAM Controller (rev 09)
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation 3rd Gen Core processor Graphics Controller (rev 09)
00:14.0 USB controller: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family USB xHCI Host Controller (rev 04)
00:16.0 Communication controller: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family MEI Controller #1 (rev 04)
00:1a.0 USB controller: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family USB Enhanced Host Controller #2 (rev 04)
00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family High Definition Audio Controller (rev 04)
00:1c.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family PCI Express Root Port 1 (rev c4)
00:1c.1 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family PCI Express Root Port 2 (rev c4)
00:1d.0 USB controller: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family USB Enhanced Host Controller #1 (rev 04)
00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corporation HM77 Express Chipset LPC Controller (rev 04)
00:1f.2 RAID bus controller: Intel Corporation 82801 Mobile SATA Controller [RAID mode] (rev 04)                                              
00:1f.3 SMBus: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family SMBus Controller (rev 04)                                                
01:00.0 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL8101E/RTL8102E PCI Express Fast Ethernet controller (rev 05)                  
02:00.0 Network controller: Intel Corporation Centrino Wireless-N 2200 (rev c4)   

See here for a review (MS Windows centric, though): http://www.notebookcheck.net/Review-Toshiba-Satellite-U940-101-Ultrabook.87454.0.html

Dynamic CPU throttling

This was not working so I disabled it on the BIOS.

Sleeping

I had lots of trouble with the machine switching itself on while on sleep. There are two options on the BIOS that need to be disabled the "switch on the machine when there's little battery left" (that one is genius) and the "hibernate after two hours of stand-by" which in reality just wakes up the machine after two hours, Debian either doesn't hibernate or doesn't understand the ACPI message.

Backlight

Still no luck, but it should work in this direction:

X-Windows

The laptop screen is well supported by the drivers shipped with wheezy. External monitors are a different matter, though.

The Core i5-3317U Ivy Bridge CPU has an integrated HD Graphics 4000 GPU.

Multiple Monitors

I'm getting a blank screen intermitently when connected to an external monitor through a HDMI->VGA adapter.

It complains about an EDID checksum error.

Some leads:

(Booting the machine with modeset=0 renders X unabled to start.)

UPDATE: the problem was due to a faulty VGA cable.

Wi-Fi Issues

02:00.0 Network controller: Intel Corporation Centrino Wireless-N 2200 (rev c4)   

When running on battery, the Wi-Fi needs to be re-enabled frequently. When doing 'ping' it'll complain about no buffer space left.

NOTE: This laptop has no bluetooth

What works

  • The intel graphics chipset works fine with acceleration under KDE4
  • The ethernet works very well
  • The SD reader works very well
  • The webcam works very well

Using an experimental kernel

Following these instructions: http://wiki.debian.org/DebianExperimental

Installed this kernel: http://packages.debian.org/experimental/kernel/linux-image-3.8-trunk-amd64

and also firmware-realtek (you'll need to enable non-free)


Update

the buttons for changing the backlight stopped working but that functionality can be made work with:

echo 2000 > /sys/class/backlight/intel_backlight/brightness


On the bad news front the USB doesn't work unless the machine is plugged in.

For the most part Wi-Fi stop to behave intermitently althought I managed to reproduce the problem under a very bad conditions (access point far away, lot of interference, running on battery, etc).


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