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Acer Travelmate P645-M

Author(s)

Scrandy (Tested Ubuntu 14.10)

Introduction

The Acer P645 is an excellent, very robust and very portable subnotebook with very good Linux compatibility. Except the 3G-modem, which I cannot test at the moment, the laptop seems to have nearly 100% compatibility. Powersaving can be tuned quite well with tlp and powertop. Most things work out of the box with Kubuntu 14.10.

If you want to buy one: watch out for minimal version differences within the same model number (IPS, HDD, CPU)!

It would be nice, if someone could post, how 3G can be made to work.

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Specifications

For full specifications see the Acer Travelmate P645-M specifications page.

NameAcer Travelmate P645-M
ProcessorIntel Core i5-4200U 1.60 GHz 3 MB or i5-4210U 1.70 GHz 3MB
Screen35.6 cm ( 14“) Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS or (1366 x 768) NOIPS !!!
RAM4GB + 1 free Slot (up to 12 GB)
HDD500 GB HDD or 20GB/120GB/250GB instead of the HDD or in an additional mSata Slot
Optical DriveNone
GraphicsIntel HD 4400
NetworkWifi abgn, Gigabit Lan, 3G

Linux Compatibility

DeviceCompatibilityComments
Processorworks
Screenworks 156 DPI needs a lot of work to adapt the applications. Installation and some apps (e.g. Chrome) still look very small.
HDDworksBoth HDD and mSata SSD work well
Graphics Chipworks Backlight-keys work also very well
VGA OutNot Tested
HDMI OutworksWorks also with audio output
Soundworks Even volume keys work out of the box
Microphoneworks
Headphone PortNot Tested
Microphone-In PortNot Tested
Wirelessworks
3GNot Tested
Bluetoothworks Tested with bluetooth headphones
USBworks
Card Readerworks
Webcamworks
Keyboardworks Fn-Keys work but not the extra 3 keys - wifi however can be switched off by Fn-keys
TouchPadworks Multitouch gestures work out of the box (2 finger scrolling etc)
Fingerprint ReaderNot Tested
Suspend/Resumeworks

Notes

UEFI Dualboot needs some work (especially if you are new to UEFI). I made a fresh WIn8.1 installation on the mSata SSD and then installed Ubuntu 14.10 also on the SSD (Both in UEFI Mode). Afterwards I replaced the Windows Boot Manager in the UEFI Setup with Grub2 and it worked.

The high 156 DPI with Full HD needs extensive adaptation of the apps. There are several guides available but some Apps (Chrome etc.) still need fixing. I went with KDE and worked on firefox/thinderbird with the about:config fix. This worked when I uninstalled the oxygen icons for gtk. Some apps still are a bit small, but all relevant ones work well. If you do not like working on this, I suggest not to choose the HD-version. But this is a general problem and will improve over time, especially because of the emerging retina displays.

All Chips (3G, NFC, Wifi, Keyboard-Light, HDD) can be switched off using tlp and self-congigured hotkeys getting power consumption down to 5.8 W (with 40% display light on) from above 10 W. So the battery saving can be tuned quite well and this laptop is ready for ultramobile linux usage.

Summary

The Acer P645-M works really well out of the box with Kubuntu 14.10. I will expand this article, when I have the time to test the rest. (Version tested: NX.V8VEG.025 on Ubuntu 14.10 in Winter 2014)

If you got 3G working please post in the notes section how.


Discussion

Streif, 2016/02/09 23:43

Hi and thanks for the review.

I also have a p645-m with a slightly different configuration: Core I5 4210u with 8gb ram, 3g and nfc.

I am using Ubuntu 15.10 and nearly everything has worked out of the box.

The only things that need some fixing are the 3G-Modem, the NFC and the fingerprintreader. I have not tried to get the fingerprintreader and the NFC to work, so I can not tell anything about workarounds for these cards.

Getting the Huawei 3G to work was very easy in my case. I only had to turn on the 3G Huawei Modem with the command: sudo rfkill unblock wwan. The current status of the modem can be checked by rfkill -list afterwards. After restarting the networkmanager the modem showed up and I was able to establish a 3G connection without any problems afterwards.

If somebody has expierience with the fingerprintreader and the NFC, i would be happy to hear about that.

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acer_travelmate_p645-m.txt · Last modified: 2014/12/28 17:05 by 79.243.97.16
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