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(x)ubuntu on the Sony VAIO N505SN

this is to collect the “dirty” bits that are needed to successfully install/run ubuntu Linux on the VAIO n505sn – like video drivers, brightness adjustments, CDROM problems….

Ingredients:
1 Ubuntu CD – flavor: Xubuntu 7.04 “feisty fawn” (GTK2 and XFCE-based)
1 Sony VAIO subnotebook “n505sn” – slightly aging but still one of the sexiest pieces of hardware around (imho)
1 external CDROM drive (PCGA-CD51/A)
1 considerable amount of patience (sloooow system

First of all: the LIVE CDs/DVDs gave me trouble. Always.
I usually used the “alternate” or “server” install CDROMs and had to specify the following to boot into a successful installation with the Sony external proprietary PCMCIA CDROM drive:
(the n505sn doesn’t have an internal CDROM)
boot: linux ide2=0x180,0x386

ACPI usually is difficult – the n505sn’s motherboard was way ahead of its time, same as its crystal sharp 1024×768 screen but many distros have a BIOS deadline which is usually met when trying to install linux on this one. the following boot-parameter helps:
acpi=force
further testing with live-cd’s:
pci=nomsi
irqpoll
(to be continued)