TIPS: Acer Aspire 5740 Laptop

Posted: May 10, 2010 in Hardware, Linux
Tags: , , , , , ,

With a couple of tweaks, the Acer Aspire 5740 series looks like a winner for Linux users. Two issues I have run into both have workarounds. The other one should be an easy fix as well.

Brightness Control

As I mentioned before, I am running Arch Linux on this computer. Out of the box you can’t adjust the backlight brightness. I confirmed the same with Ubuntu 10.04. This can be fixed by adding the following to your GRUB kernel parameters:

acpi_osi=”Linux”

A kernel patch has been proposed here to prevent the need for this; maybe it will make it into the next release.

UPDATE – There is a new and better fix for the brightness issue.  See my comment here and if you are running Ubuntu, check Kamal Mostafa’s PPA.

Wired Networking

Because of an issue with the tg3 driver in the kernel, the Broadcom wired NIC is not detected properly at startup. A temporary fix is to remove the tg3 module, load the Broadcom module then reinsert the tg3 module. A better solution is to download the current driver from Broadcom, compile it yourself and install it.

N.B. – Make sure you have your kernel headers installed before you try to compile the module.

UPDATE – It seems that the tg3 driver is fixed in the 2.6.35 kernel so the above procedure is no longer necessary (after you upgrade).

Sound

There also seems to be an issue with audio coming from the built-in speakers when the headphone jack is in use. I will get to that one soon.

Everything else just works!  If I come across any other issues I will update this post.

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Comments
  1. finemann says:

    Awesome tips mate, your rock!!!

  2. Joe Jackson says:

    Using acpi_osi=”Linux” for the brightness fix does NOT work on my Aspire 5740, however, if I use acpi_osi= (Nothing) It works perfectly… For newbie ubuntuers like myself, this is a simple solution, just add it to the grub.cfg and viola.

    • linux4tw says:

      @Joe – Check out the links in the update to my post. You get more levels of backlight adjustment with the new method and the level does not have to be readjusted after every reboot.

  3. Vladimir says:

    Well.

    I have the latest Kernel and everything, but my brightness controls don’t work yet.
    It’s about an Acer Aspire 5740-5255.

    Thank you anyway …

  4. Vadim P. says:

    Ubuntu’s 3.0.0-15-generic kernel fixes the screen not coming back on after it shuts off – perhaps it fixes this as well.

  5. Thanks for the info, the backlight problem has been annoying me for 2 years!
    Adding acpi_backlight=vendor fixed the problem for me, running Arch linux on a 3.2 kernel.

  6. L Eagle says:

    /\
    I
    I

    This guy has the answer cheers Jeremy awesome job

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