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Boris van Schooten
Tested with Ubuntu 9.10 32bit.
The Aspire 5542G appears to be the 5542 with a better GPU. The specs below are from my own variant of the model (304G64Mn).
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|Name||Acer Aspire 5542G|
|Processor||AMD Athlon II X2 M300|
|Screen||1366×768 (note: about 18 bits per pixel interlaced)|
|HDD||640GB Western Digital Scorpio Blue|
|Optical Drive||LG GT30N|
|Graphics||ATI Mobility Radeon 4570|
|Network||Ethernet, Wifi (Atheros AR9280)|
|HDD||Yes||Fixed Scorpio head park problem with sudo hdparm -B 255 /dev/sda|
|Graphics||Yes||Full 3D support with proprietary ATI driver|
|Sound||Yes||Speakers, headphone, microphone work|
|Wireless||Yes||ath9k crashes randomly, madwifi seems to work well|
|Card Reader||Not Tested|
The Scorpio 640GB has a head park problem that also manifests itself on the pre-installed windows (you hear clicking sounds from the drive every few seconds, during which the drive is inaccessible), and is also reported on other computers. I fixed it by turning off its powersave functionality (sudo hdparm -B 255 /dev/sda).
The open source video driver also worked, though I did not test it extensively.
I had to install Madwifi manually in ubuntu 9.10. I followed these instructions. I used jockey to enable it, but it turned out both madwifi and ath9k were running at the same time even after reboot. This was fixed after putting a line “blacklist ath9k” in /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf.
With CPU throttling defaulting to “balanced” and HD powersave off, battery life is more than 2h 40m when I'm just web browsing.