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The Sony VAIO VGN-FW140/E runs Kubuntu 10.04 perfectly, “out of the box”:
3D Acceleration works well for the medium range Intel Corporation Mobile 4 Series Chipset Integrated Graphics Controller chip. Stellarium gives 28-35 fps. The 16” diagonal screen is gorgeous. Movies stream beautifully to the screen but for more than one person to enjoy the sound without headphones one should plug in a stereo amplifier-speaker system.
The Intel Corporation 82801I (ICH9 Family) audio chip works with either ALSA or PulseAudio. The sound is rich with Dolby and Stereo, but one needs headphones for full effect.
The Richo web camera works well and gives rich color and crispness. Skype works perfectly for both video and audio, even without headphones and mic. So does Ekiga, Blink and several other client and web based VOIP services.
The WiFi Link 5100 is detected using the iwlagn module and gives excellent results with swcrypto=1
The lettering on the M and N keys of the keyboard have come off, but the widely spaced chicklet keys are easy to use, even if they lack tactile or audio feedback.
The touchpad works well.
The battery gives about 3 hours of service and the BIOS limits the charge to 80% of maximum, which is why it is still working strong after three years of use.
I've never tried the “MagiGate”, but the three USB ports, the HDMI port, the Eth0 port and the other sockets work well.
So far, in short, this notebook has been perfect for Kubuntu from 9.10 to 11.04. I haven't tried Oneiric yet.