running ubuntu on a vaio BZ series laptop
I recently purchased a sony vaio VGN-BZ31VT. To be short, everything works for as far as I know and care.
CPU: Intel® Core™2 Duo-processor P8700 @ 2,53 Ghz
mem: DDR2 SDRAM (2 x 2 GB)
graphics: Mobile Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator 4500MHD
Wifi: intel wifi link 5100
audio: intel HD audio
ethernet: Intel 82567 Gigabit
bluetooth: ? 2.0 + EDR
Well all the basics seem to work, the special function keys on the keyboard, the mouse pad, the screen, wifi and ethernet port.
But most importantly, suspend and hibernate also work. All of this out of the box, just install and go.
incidentally, this CPU also support intel VT, it is off by default, but you can easily enable it in the bios. If like me you use virtual machines a lot, it is rather nice to have. Haven’t done any real tests to see if it is faster, but at least it’s there.
I haven’t tested bluetooth, don’t need it.
What doesn’t work
The laptop also has a fingerprint scanner, which with some tinkering can be used. It’s not so much a problem of hardware support it seems, but more that there isn’t a mainstream way of integrating fingerprints scanners with the security system in linux. The solution I read needs you to install some fingerprint scanning software and load that as a module in PAM. Too much work for too little gain for my taste, but if you really want it, then you can get it to work (probably).
I wanted a no-nonsense development laptop with lots of memory and preferably virtualization support in the CPU, it should also work under linux with minimal fuss and suspend working was a must have.
Mission successful it seems.
Seeing as there is very little recent user experience info about this laptop out there at the moment, i figured i should write this little blog, if only to give people the peace of mind that you can safely buy this laptop for running linux.