Toshiba Portege Z30-A-12Q

Author(s)

TomK

Introduction

This page is just for discussing using Linux on the Toshiba Portege Z30-A.

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Specifications

NameToshiba Portege Z30-A-12Q
ProcessorIntel i5-4200U
Screen13.3“ 1366×768 Widescreen
RAM4GB
HDD256GB SDD
Optical Drivenone
GraphicsHaswell-ULT Integrated Graphics Controller
NetworkEthernet - Intel I218-V, Wifi - Intel Wireless 3160

Linux Compatibility

DeviceCompatibilityComments
ProcessorYes
ScreenYes
HDDYes
Graphics ChipYes
VGA OutYes/No/Partial/Not TestedComments
HDMI PortYes/No/Partial/Not TestedComments
SoundYes
Bulti-in MicrophoneYes
Headphone/Mic JackYes
EthernetYeskernel 3.10+
WirelessYeswork with 3.10+ (rf_kill problems), better 3.12+
BluetoothYes/No/Partial/Not TestedComments
USBYes
Card ReaderYes/No/Partial/Not TestedComments
Fingerprint ReaderYes/No/Partial/Not TestedComments
WebcamYes/No/Partial/Not TestedComments
Smart Card ReaderYes/No/Partial/Not TestedComments
Docking StationYes/No/Partial/Not TestedComments
Track PointYes/No/Partial/Not TestedComments
Suspend/ResumeYes/No/Partial/Not TestedComments

Notes

tested with Debian wheezy + vanilla 3.10.x and 3.12.x kernels

Summary

Fn-keys problem, othewise mostly works fine.

7W in idle with 3.10.x kernel, nice.


Discussion

einarth, 2014/09/25 14:49

Thank you all for your replies. I ordered a Z30-A-1E1 (that's an i7-4510U) as its low weight is perfect for working while traveling, will let you know about the fan noise issue since I also plan to do some (light) gaming once in a while.

As for the high pitched noise reported by Manuel and others, maybe replacing the fan can help? I hear maintenance is possible by opening the bottom side screws.

Manuel, 2014/09/21 12:08

Hi einarth,

I don't really know if this issue is really solved by upgrading the kernel. Maybe someone should try with the kernel 3.16. But there are two things that I think are very related. First, after some browsing, I found that Toshiba is probably one of the biggest computers manufacturers that offer very poor Linux support. Second, the fan noise highly depends on the kind of activity with the laptop. For example, for just browsing or reading the email, then I don't think it would make a lot of noise. However, if you are going to work with heavy programming environments like for example Eclipse or Visual Studio, with several projects open, and in general tasks that highly demand CPU, then I think you will probably fan noise. For me, the most annoying about the noise was the high sound frequencies.

In a post of the Internet I also read that noise is the general complaint of many ultrabook users. In my case that made me understand that I shouldn't buy an ultrabook. I postponed my decision of buying a new computer. But I'm considering a different kind of laptop or even a desktop computer.

Regards.

Manuel.

Dim, 2014/09/22 16:12

Why does mine make noise even in moderate tasks?

For example if I open a large pdf file the fans will start spining like crazy.

If I have Matlab open for a while (not heavy computations) same.

If I have Mendeley open along with FF and Texmaker… the same.

Same laptop, under Windows 7, running a HEAVY Matlab routine goes on silent for long.

einarth, 2014/09/21 05:02

Can anyone shed some light on the noisy fan issue? Some say it's quiet, others say it's loud… I'm going to buy this laptop but would like to know if noise is an issue and if it can be solved (by upgrading the kernel, changing settings, etc.) Thanks.

Beurt, 2014/09/21 16:22

For now, testing both Kernel 3.12 and 3.17rc5, I have no problem with the noise on my Mageia 4.

The computer is usually silent. When I'm playing with some games or I'm doing some heavy calculation the fan become a little noisy, but not very disturbing. Mine is a z30-A-17D with an i7 (~2Ghz), and it is not that easy to heat up all four cores … you will need some very heavy calculations.

Beurt, 2014/09/21 16:27

OOps sorry, I said 17D (I wish it had be), but it is a 19L (but still an i7)

Beurt, 2014/09/18 18:46

Hi everyone,

Here come some news of my use on day to day basis, and my very recent testing:

First of all, afetr a few weeks I still have some annoying issues:
- I use hibernation to keep control on screen brightness (see the message above) but it comes with various problems: 1- hibernation is not that fast ! 2- I don't know why, but sometime the resuming fails and I have to hard reboot the machine → BAD !
- For the middle clic and the scroll I tried some tricks that are not that confortable.(cf. previous message)

So I decided to go ahead and test the very new kernel (3.17) that it is known to include several improvements for us: better ALPS 7 driver (for the touch/trackpad, and a better ACPI for Toshiba's (for special keys, brightness and so on). I just installed on my mageia 4 (Kernel 3.12) the kernel 3.17 rc5 bundled for the Mageia 5 Alpha 2 realease (supposed to be quite unstable…).

It's only been a few hours, but for now, it is quite pleasing!:
- the touch/trackpad is fully functional (middle click, gestures, etc.) :-)
- you can adjust brightness of the screen even after a suspend :-)

Evrething else seems to run smoothly. I will keep you posted…

Beurt, 2014/08/31 20:12

Hi,

I just received my brand new z30-A-19L (W7 and BIOS mode for now, I will maybe try to upgrade to W8, and maybe try UEFI?). I immediately installed a Mageia Linux 4 on it, and like you, most of the features are working properly.

Unfortunately there is still some weird issues:
- the ALPS pad that is only recognized as mouse (no gesture, like scrolling pages; no middle click emulated with simultaneous left&right click, etc.) → This is very very annoying! (I did not manage to build the psmouse-dkms-alpsv7 driver on my distro)
- the screen backlight is working properly if acpi_backlight=vendor is set in GRUB options, but after suspending, the backlight control is not working anymore
- the hibernation is working properly and is a solution to the suspend and backlight control issue (since backlight control is working after resuming)… but: fn keys do not work after resuming (strange!)

Here comes a few useful links about Linux and these machines:

- http://linuxontoshiba.blogspot.fr/2014/03/fedora-20-on-portege-z30-last.html#comment-form
- http://forums.computers.toshiba-europe.com/forums/thread.jspa?threadID=75682 (from vencik)
- Already given: http://lopucha.net/Linux_on_Toshiba_Portege_Z30-A-12N/ from vencik and very useful (thanks! :-))
- https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?id=179436
- http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2200363&p=12929991#post12929991

Beurt, 2014/09/02 20:16

Hi,

After a few tweaks here where I am:

- Impossible for me to build the psmouse module from http://lopucha.net/Linux_on_Toshiba_Portege_Z30-A-12N/ on my Mageia 4

- As I *need* to use the middle click of the mouse (wheel click) for pasting, but also for dimensioning windows (KDE) I used xinput (as explained here: http://www.thinkwiki.org/wiki/How_to_configure_the_TrackPoint) to emulate the middle button click

- Unfortunately this middle button tweak is not compatible with wheel Emulation on button 3 (left click). So As I also need the wheel, I use xdotool to add some new shortcuts (Meta+Arrows) to emulate the wheel. It is working fine (except that I cannot perform any Ctrl+wheel to zoom in/out).

- I use hibernate instead suspend to maintain the possibility to change screen dim, and it is working fine.

Manuel, 2014/07/14 08:37

Hi, vencik. Does your laptop's fan make quite noise sometimes?

Dim, 2014/09/03 11:30

I am getting a noisy fan very often. Even when the computer is not being stressed, say web-browsing and PDF reading.
Anyone have experienced/solved this? (Running ubuntu 14.04 on Z30A-1D6)

Manuel, 2014/07/03 21:35

I installed Debian stable but now grub does not load and I cannot start my Linux system. I used the default partitioning suggested by the Debian installer.

vencik, 2014/04/29 08:34

I have a similar model: Z30-A-12N, got Debian Jessie work quite nicely.
If anyone is interested: http://lopucha.net/Linux_on_Toshiba_Portege_Z30-A-12N/

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toshiba_portege_z30-a.txt · Last modified: 2014/01/03 19:13 by kasparek
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