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25% (2)
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13% (1)
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38% (3)
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25% (2)

Toshiba Satellite C655D

Author(s)

Joseph Jon Booker (joe@neoturbine.net)
Jim C. Read (jcr20jm@aol.com)

Introduction

This is for a Toshiba Satellite C655D-S5048, as found on http://laptops.toshiba.com/laptops/satellite/C650/C655D-S5048. The part number of this laptop is PSC16U-002010.
Also a C655D-S5136 running Linux Mint

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Specifications

NameToshiba Satellite C655D-S5048
ProcessorAMD Athlon™ II Dual-Core Mobile Processor P320
Screen15.6“ widescreen, HD TruBrite® LCD Display, max 1366×768
RAM3GB DDR3 memory
HDD320GB HDD (5400rpm)
Optical DriveDVD-SuperMulti drive (+/-R double layer)
GraphicsATI® Mobility Radeon™ HD 4250
Network10/100 Ethernet, Atheros 802.11b/g/n

Linux Compatibility

DeviceCompatibilityComments
ProcessorYesScales from 800Mhz to 2100Mhz.
ScreenYesUses same resolution available in Windows (1366×768 @60Hz). Screen is able to be dimmed by software settings (i.e., when on battery) and hardware keys with on-screen notification. Haven't tested with an external monitor.
HDDYesNo errors so far, able to view SMART data. hddtemp is able to obtain a temperature reading.
Optical DriveYesReads fine. Has burned bootable DVDs and CDs without problems.
GraphicsYesUsed fglrx under Ubuntu 10.04, now using the FOSS radeon driver under 10.10. No noticeable lag with Gnome/compiz's 'Visual Effects' set to Extra. Full performance in World of Goo, and SimCity 4 under wine. May just continue to use radeon driver even when fglrx catches up to 2.6.35. Haven't used heavily.
Soundyes, and partialMain speakers work out of the box, headphone jack doesn't. This includes on-screen display of the sound, and pulseaudio's ability to set the volume greater then 100%. Adding 'options snd-hda-intel model=ideapad' to the end of /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base.conf allowed the headphone jack to work (i.e., all sound outputs to the headphones if they are plugged in). It's not an ideapad, but setting model=toshiba made no difference. This works on all versions of the C655D, and is highly recommended.
EthernetYes
WirelessYesIt suffers from: https://patchwork.kernel.org/patch/103589/, i.e., newer kernels need a patch to be able to use airodump-ng. There is no switch for wireless, the keyboard key to toggle it does not work (Network-manager does not even power it down when I disable wireless, 'iwconfig wlan0 txpower off' is needed).
56K ModemNon-Existent
USBYesEvery usb port works, I've tethered and accessed usb drives through them.
Card ReaderYesSD was faster than USB in terms of copying a file. It works beyond USB3x speed.

ACPI

If you do not have an AtomBios, but an H2O bios, skip the information below. If you are looking to buy a computer, please look for one with the H2O bios, because the problems below are caused by the atombios.

This is the big deal, because no Linux distribution I tried would boot without disabling ACPI (an ACPI-related stack trace is displayed). This is pretty damn horrible considering it is a laptop and I would like to be able to query the battery, screen, suspend, etc. The non-power related hardware will work without ACPI, but Linux is not able to shut it down (the system halts, but it requires holding down the power button to fully shut it down).

Apparently this is because Toshiba's BIOS changes the DSDT while the machine is running, and so the solution for now is to copy the dsdt on boot. This is bug https://bugzilla.kernel.org/show_bug.cgi?id=14679. If using a 2.6.35 kernel, “acpi=copy_dsdt” must be added to the kernel boot parameters. As of 9/28/10, the mainline kernel now copies the dsdt of all Toshiba Satellite laptops. The real solution is to figure out what the Linux ACPI code is doing to trigger the switching of the DSDT (this doesn't happen in Windows), but at least for now there is a workaround.

There is no capability (in Windows or Linux) to control the fans. There is a way to get the temperature of the CPU in ACPI. lm-sensors also is able to use the k10temp module to get the ACPI Cooling Zone temperature (fan?) and another CPU temperature which is usually within several degrees of ACPI's readings.

Suspend works well, including suspending usb devices. Unfortunately, hibernation freezes with some debug messages about AtomBios, although I haven't investigated this enough.

lspci Listing

Here is the output of `lspci -k` to give an idea of what kernel modules are needed.

00:00.0 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] RS780 Host Bridge Alternate
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
00:01.0 PCI bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] RS780 PCI to PCI bridge (int gfx)
	Kernel modules: shpchp
00:04.0 PCI bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] RS780 PCI to PCI bridge (PCIE port 0)
	Kernel driver in use: pcieport
	Kernel modules: shpchp
00:05.0 PCI bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] RS780 PCI to PCI bridge (PCIE port 1)
	Kernel driver in use: pcieport
	Kernel modules: shpchp
00:11.0 SATA controller: ATI Technologies Inc SB700/SB800 SATA Controller [AHCI mode]
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
	Kernel driver in use: ahci
	Kernel modules: ahci
00:12.0 USB Controller: ATI Technologies Inc SB700/SB800 USB OHCI0 Controller
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
	Kernel driver in use: ohci_hcd
00:12.2 USB Controller: ATI Technologies Inc SB700/SB800 USB EHCI Controller
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
	Kernel driver in use: ehci_hcd
00:13.0 USB Controller: ATI Technologies Inc SB700/SB800 USB OHCI0 Controller
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
	Kernel driver in use: ohci_hcd
00:13.2 USB Controller: ATI Technologies Inc SB700/SB800 USB EHCI Controller
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
	Kernel driver in use: ehci_hcd
00:14.0 SMBus: ATI Technologies Inc SBx00 SMBus Controller (rev 41)
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
	Kernel driver in use: piix4_smbus
	Kernel modules: i2c-piix4
00:14.2 Audio device: ATI Technologies Inc SBx00 Azalia (Intel HDA) (rev 40)
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
	Kernel driver in use: HDA Intel
	Kernel modules: snd-hda-intel
00:14.3 ISA bridge: ATI Technologies Inc SB700/SB800 LPC host controller (rev 40)
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
00:14.4 PCI bridge: ATI Technologies Inc SBx00 PCI to PCI Bridge (rev 40)
	Kernel modules: shpchp
00:16.0 USB Controller: ATI Technologies Inc SB700/SB800 USB OHCI0 Controller
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
	Kernel driver in use: ohci_hcd
00:16.2 USB Controller: ATI Technologies Inc SB700/SB800 USB EHCI Controller
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
	Kernel driver in use: ehci_hcd
00:18.0 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] Family 10h Processor HyperTransport Configuration
00:18.1 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] Family 10h Processor Address Map
00:18.2 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] Family 10h Processor DRAM Controller
	Kernel modules: amd64_edac_mod
00:18.3 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] Family 10h Processor Miscellaneous Control
	Kernel driver in use: k10temp
	Kernel modules: k10temp
00:18.4 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] Family 10h Processor Link Control
01:05.0 VGA compatible controller: ATI Technologies Inc M880G [Mobility Radeon HD 4200]
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device fde4
	Kernel driver in use: radeon
	Kernel modules: radeon
02:00.0 Network controller: Atheros Communications Inc. AR9285 Wireless Network Adapter (PCI-Express) (rev 01)
	Subsystem: Askey Computer Corp. Device 7159
	Kernel driver in use: ath9k
	Kernel modules: ath9k
08:00.0 Ethernet controller: Atheros Communications AR8152 v1.1 Fast Ethernet (rev c1)
	Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ff1e
	Kernel driver in use: atl1c
	Kernel modules: atl1c

Discussion

Rich, 2014/07/04 14:03

Linux Mint 17 “Cinnamon” and “xfce” both work fine on the laptop. Wireless + Ethernet + DVD + sound work right away. You must install the non-GPL video driver or the display freezes – instructions are in the release notes at linuxmint.com.

[Unfortunately the case on my Toshiba is sprung near the hinge (screws stripped), so it's now a desktop-only machine. I did get a couple years of fairly heavy laptop use out of it.]

antarezx, 2012/11/19 21:54

I have a laptop just like this, support for gnome 3 sucks, and velocity distribution throughout, if used in more than 2 or 3 processes throughout the system freezes, the most common is that the entire screen is pixelated and the only solution is a forced off with the off button, not recommended at all in the use of a Linux distribution, is under their conditions if they want to use this laptop as dual botting or using all the laptop with the distribution, to I work myself better a Gateway, Acer and Lenovo.

comm64, 2014/07/04 11:35

I too have a laptop just like this. In fact, I'm using it now and I have no problems with it whatsoever. IF, I have ever run into anything that *I* might consider to be a problem, it was fairly quickly resolved on my own along with the help of google and members of the respective community, e.g. ubuntu, debian, arch, etc. What actual problem(s) did you run into?

Sakume, 2011/12/01 19:30

Ubuntu 11.04 (64 bit) freezes randomly. These other OS's also don't work on the C655D series apparently.
CentOS, Ubuntu (and it's other flavors), Debian, FreeBSD, Haiku, MandrivaONE, Damn Small Linux

Rich, 2011/05/17 13:50

I just installed CrunchBang Linux on this model and everything works to my satisfaction.

Note1: crunchbang ran 'live' off a USB stick but FAILED on the install at the partition disks step … the memory test also failed to run off the USB stick. There is a mention somewhere in the forums at http://crunchbanglinux.org/ saying UNetbootin produces slightly bad live USB sticks. When I burned a CD and installed from that things went much better.

Note2: sound to headphones works but does not mute the speakers as described above. I still need to work on that

Jim, 2011/04/21 21:35

Ian, you are using a slightly older model, so I don't really know what to tell you.

Jim, 2011/04/15 22:00

If you are running Ubuntu 10.04, then there is a menu at the top of the screen in the panel. It is a speaker, and opens on click. Click on sound preferences, and from there you should be able to mute and unmute any part of your system's audio card. By the way, do you have an idea what kind of audio card you are using? I know most use an intel one, but if you are like me with an AMD processor, it is probably a different audio card. If only they had kept the old preferences dialog that used to pop up with the sound preferences option. It was so handy comparatively.

Ian, 2011/04/13 23:34

Also I am running Linux 10.4 software and have been trying to find out how to fix this for some time.

Ian, 2011/04/13 23:32

My headphones still don't work even after I changed the file, actually they work but the computer doesn't identify them so it doesn't mute the built in speakers. I have a Satellite c655d-s5063, could you please help?!?
Thanks

Jim, 2011/03/22 22:24

I have recently installed Ubuntu on the same machine, and after using Fedora, it works better than windows. (I did have to add that line to the Alsa modprobe file)

soundcard is flawless compared to windows.

jim, 2011/03/22 22:26

I mean in terms of the Linux MultiMedia studio working for once without that noisy hissing and the sudden slowness while playing something back.

Jim, 2011/02/27 23:36

Note: Fedora 14, not 13 or below.

Jim, 2011/02/27 22:47

I am using Fedora Linux and can shut down fine. No messing with the power button is needed. Also, suspend, hibernate, and all other features work fine, without changing any BIOS settings.

karen, 2011/01/28 03:24

What distribution of Linux is compatible with this model of Toshiba? and try to install Open Suse on a compaq pc which has the same characteristics of this toshiba. I could not install anything.

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toshiba_satellite_c655d.txt · Last modified: 2012/06/09 08:05 by billg
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