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Toshiba Satellite C50-B-15N

Introduction

Toshiba Satellite C50-B-15N is a budget laptop available in some European markets (like in ex-Yugoslavia, for example).
If you have the Toshiba Satellite C50-B-15N and are running Linux on it please consider editing this page for any update, or adding a comment below with your compatibility details. By contributing you will help other people running this laptop or trying to make a decision on whether to buy it or not.

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Specifications

For full specifications see the official Toshiba Croatia Satellite C50-B-15N specifications page (in croatian).

NameToshiba Satellite C50-B-15N
ProcessorIntel® Celeron(R) CPU N2840 with Intel® Burst Technology 2.0 @ 2.16GHz × 2 (2.58GHz with Burst)
Screen15.6“ widescreen Toshiba TruBrite® HD TFT High Brightness display with LED backlighting, 1366×768 (HD), 16:9 aspect ratio
RAM4GB DDR3L
HDD500GB 5400rpm
Optical DriveSlim DVD-SuperMulti drive (double layer)
GraphicsIntel HD Graphics
Network10BASE-T/100BASE-TX Fast Ethernet LAN
Qualcomm Atheros Wi-Fi Wireless networking (802.11b/g/n) with Bluetooth® 4.0 + LE

Linux Compatibility

DeviceCompatibilityComments
ProcessorWorksBurst works, too.
ScreenWorksBrightness is adjustable too, but the apposite FN keys don't work.
HDDWorks
Graphics ChipWorks
HDMI OutNot Tested
Display PortWorks
Optical DriveWorks
SoundWorks
MicrophoneWorks
Headphone and Microphone combo PortWorks
EthernetWorks
WirelessWorks
BluetoothWorks after fixMost distros come with missing firmware for this.
USBWorks
FirewireN/A
Card ReaderNot Tested
WebcamWorks
KeyboardWorksSome FN keys don't work (correctly), others do.
TouchPadWorksMultithouch, 3 fingers
Suspend/ResumeWorks

Notes

I am using this laptop with Ubuntu 15.04 Vivid Vervet with Unity for a week now, and I got the above results.

Making Bluetooth work:
It is a Qualcomm Atheros QCA9565 / AR9565 WLAN/Bluetooth combo adapter on which many people around the internets complain about non-working Bluetooth in Linux. The problem is that most distros come with missing firmware files for the ar3k firmware.
Firstly, you will need a recent Linux kernel, at least v. 3.18 to make this adapter work at all. Ubuntu Vivid comes with Linux 3.19.0, so you are fine if you plan on using that, or a later version.
If you do a “dmesg | grep -i blue” and “dmesg | grep -i firmware”, you will notice they complain about a missing firmware file, namely AthrBT_0x31010100.dfu. But you will also need its couple ramps_0x31010100_40.dfu along with it to make it work.
Secondly, you will have to get the missing firmware files from the internet. I wasn't able to extract these from the drivers packages distributed on the official Toshiba drivers download website. Fortunately, Ubuntu Forums user Ephialta shares a link to a normally extractable Windows driver .cab package: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2260501&p=13207809#post13207809
So you open the package and extract only the two aforementioned files.
Thirdly, if you are using Ubuntu Vivid, like me, you have to put those files into /lib/firmware/ar3k/ (as root, or with sudo, of course).
Other versions or distros may have different paths to firmware, so check that first. Point is, the files have to be added to the ar3k firmware.
Finally, reboot you laptop and Bluetooth should work now.

Also worthwhile to note…
In Croatia the computer ships OS-less, and UEFI Secure Boot is disabled by default, so you shouldn't have problems installing GNU/Linux on it.
On the keyboard, some FN keys work fine, like volume and media playback control, the Help key and PRTSC also work fine. Some FN keys don't work as expected: brightness down brings up Energy Stats window, brightness up suspends the computer. Other FN keys don't work at all.
Brightness control itself actually works, but not via the apposite keys. This is fixable in various ways. For example, I have made my own custom keyboard shortcuts pointing to xbacklight commands.

Summary

All in all, the laptop plays mostly nicely with Ubuntu. The only thing bothering me is that Bluetooth doesn't work out of the box, but this is fixable as explained above, and hopefully it will be fixed in future versions of Ubuntu and other distros.
FN keys tend to be messed up on GNU/Linux, except for officially supported and certified devices, which this one is not, so that was something I expected, and it doesn't bother me much. Especially because improvements in this area are really made over time, so hopefully future versions of various distros will support more keys.

Other than that, it is a really nice, capable and fast enough budget computer for a humanities student's needs like myself, but also for basic home computing needs, though it probably won't run some latest'n'greatest games, if you are into that. It seems to be a good value for the money (1999 Kn in Croatia, which is about €263,60).


Discussion

nourahm, 2015/09/16 04:15

thanks so much, it also works for the C55-B230, just so you know. it will work or the entire C50 series, I checked and all the laptop in this series use the same wlan/bluetooth combo.

Victor, 2015/06/21 15:30

Ethernet is not working, which is kinda annoying.
No fix known to human race until now.

franko, 2015/07/09 14:51

I only use the ethernet port very rarely, and I wouldn't expect that to fail, so I really forgot to test it at all… :-D And ATM I am not able to. By the end of the month I'm going home, and I will be able to see into that and update the page.

franko, 2015/07/27 00:10

I have tested ethernet today, and it worked normally here. Maybe there is something broken on your side, or they sold you a broken laptop… :-/

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toshiba_satellite_c50-b-15n.txt · Last modified: 2015/07/27 00:05 by 93.137.180.182
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