Feedback on the Dell Latitude E6520

Asked by aa-hcl on 2011-06-06

Hi,
Initially i installed 11.04, but was not happy with the fact that the DualPoint touchpad is only recognised with mouse. Other features worked (including back-lit keyboard).

I then thought that I would re-install 10.10 downloaded from dell and I installed it. Then updated it (still as 10.10, I refused for update to 11.04)

It DOES NOT work as good as canonical 11.04. The issues with 10.10:

1. Nvidia is not recognized properly - have to manually install nvidia-settings (worked in 11.04)
2. VERY annoying - the Fn+{up.down} combination did not work - it is supposed to change the monitor brightness, but it did not (worked in 11.04)

3. Also, the touchpad is recognised as mouse and not properly - same as in 11.04.

Becuase of p2 above it is for me turned to be much worse under 10.10, so I wiped it out and went back to 11.04.

Do you know - how to make 11.04 to recognise the DualPoint Touchpad on E6520?

Many thanks,

Alexey

Jeff Lane (bladernr) said : #1

Hi.

First, the E6520 is not certified for Ubuntu 11.04. It did not successfully pass the testing. Hopefully, the issues found during 11.04 testing will be resolved with a future 11.04 update and it will be certified then.

As for Ubuntu 10.10. the E6520 is certified only with a machine specific image that Dell uses to pre-install some systems in some regions of the world. The image you downloaded from Dell to do your 10.10 install may not be the same image as was provided for pre-install.

Out of curiosity, could you provide a link to the image for Ubuntu 10.10 that you got from Dell? I am curious as to whether they are providing the correct images or not.

Jeff Lane (bladernr) said : #2

Jeff Lane suggests this article as an answer to your question:
FAQ #1523: “Where can I find a Pre-install/Manufacturer image”.

aa-hcl (aa-hcl) said : #3

Hi Jeff,

I will try to find it again.

The algorithm is very simple and I am testing it while typying it (I understand your question since I spent at least an hour finding it as well):

go to
support.dell.com; then choose home users and then find the laptop Latitude E6520 and the link is there:

http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/driverslist.aspx?os=WN104&catid=-1&dateid=-1&impid=-1&osl=EN&typeid=-1&formatid=-1&servicetag=&SystemID=LAT_E6520&hidos=W764&hidlang=en&TabIndex=&scanSupported=False&scanConsent=False

the above link brings you to all Dell-supported drivers for Latitude E6520.

The OS is in the above link list, but direct link is:

http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/download.aspx?c=us&cs=19&l=en&s=dhs&releaseid=R284592&SystemID=LAT_E6520&servicetag=&os=WN104&osl=en&deviceid=26290&devlib=0&typecnt=0&vercnt=1&catid=-1&impid=-1&formatcnt=0&libid=58&typeid=-1&dateid=-1&formatid=-1&source=-1&fileid=421648

Note that this is a ~1Gb image which NOT bootable. to install it use the Dell's instructions (i.e. boot the laptop through their "recovery").

Alexey

aa-hcl (aa-hcl) said : #4

Hi Jeff,

in response to your comment:

"First, the E6520 is not certified for Ubuntu 11.04. It did not successfully pass the testing. Hopefully, the issues found during 11.04 testing will be resolved with a future 11.04 update and it will be certified then."

Yes, I understand that. But according to my several-day experience with E6520, 10.10 is much worse than 11.04. Because on 11.04 nearly everything works without any effort, but on 10.10 even the screen had to be done manually.

The remaining issue with the touchpad is apparently well-known bug for dell laptops.

By the way, is the touchpad recognised properly on your certified version of 10.10?

Also, you write:
"As for Ubuntu 10.10. the E6520 is certified only with a machine specific image that Dell uses to pre-install some systems in some regions of the world. "

Yes, I understand that. but if I go to us dell website (i.e. where I got the OS ubuntu 10.10), then the laptop advertised there is exactly the same as the one I got in the UK - it looks the same, has the same spec and it made in China (previously my Dell laptops were assembled in Ireland). I therefore think that my laptop is exactly the one for which Dell has certified their version of 10.10 ubuntu....

Many thanks,

Alexey

Many thanks,

Victor Tuson Palau (vtuson) said : #5

Hi Alexey,

Looking at the DELL website, it looks that on top of their 10.10 image, you will then need to install the Nividia and touchpad drivers that they give you. Did you do this?

Thanks,

Victor

aa-hcl (aa-hcl) said : #6

Hi Victor,

yes, I did that.

I installed 10.10 on a ext4 partition (using format option). When installed it does not recognise the video and the display and was showing very ugly 800x600 resolution. I then installed nvidia and touchpad drivers. Instalation of Nvidia driver did not help. Although in the menu of the installed linux there was an item "Nvidia", but it did not work. I had to fix it by installing something like "nvidia-settings" manually. Only after that the display was recognised as full HD. But 11.04 did it automatically!!!!

About the touchpad driver: it turns out to be just the same as recognized automatically on 11.04. In this driver (on the dell website) there are also couple of scripts. They are supposed to fix the Fn-F5 operation. This was just disabling the touchpad.

In 11.04 I did this myself anyway since the touchpad and the stick are not recognised properly.

Another important problem in the Dell's image 10.10 - and this is what put me off that 10.10 and returned back to 11.04 - it is the facts that Fn+up/down was producing dell mini-pictures of increasing/reducing monitor brightness (these pictures I guess are from BIOS), but the monitor brightness was NOT changing.

This feature works in 11.04 without any problems.

In summary, I tried everything on 10.10, but it was in the end worse than 11.04.

I would say that 11.04 is more certified than 10.10 for E6520 !!!

By the way, even on the UK website (dell.co.uk), if I go to E6520 and look for downloads, Dell also offer ubuntu drivers (i.e. for Nvidia, etc.).

I hope the above would help for you to answer my questions.

Alexey

Victor Tuson Palau (vtuson) said : #7

Alexey,

The problem here is that clearly DELL has not put up the ISO that they use for pre-install (which is what we certify) but something else that rather does not work.

If you had the chance to buy this system form DELL with 10.10 you would have found it work just find. The reason that 11.04 works well with the e6520 is that we are submitting the work we did with for 10.10 to 11.04, however we have not completed doing so.

I understand that in your experience 11.04 has worked better that 10.10, and that is regrettable. I will let the guys at DELL know this.

We are still committed to for the e6520 fully certified with an stock ubuntu image. We have tested the e6520 with 11.04 and we have found the following bugs blocking it from being certified:
777321 [Dell Latitude E5520M/E6520] SD card is not detected
777310 [Dell Latitude E5520M/E6520] Firewire hdd is not automounted
792550 [Dell Latitude E6520][nVidia] Resuming from hibernate goes to a blank screen.
792532 [Dell Latitude E6520][nVidia] Suspend causes white screen to appear

Once this are resolved the system can be certified.

aa-hcl (aa-hcl) said : #8

Hi Victor,

many thanks for this answer. Here are some comments regarding the above bugs:

777321 [Dell Latitude E5520M/E6520] SD card is not detected

Yes , that is true, But that was also the case for E5510 and in there a simple solution was found on ubuntu forums. I will try that and will report back.

792550 [Dell Latitude E6520][nVidia] Resuming from hibernate goes to a blank screen.

This indeed happened at least one time, but this is something I could not confirm yet - not enough time to try since I have this laptop only several days. It was certainly in some cases resuming normally. But because after some updates ubuntu was not able to shut down properly (just before the end of being shut dawn it hangs with blank screen), I can not confirm that resuming from hibernate does not work. By the way, without any fixes ubuntu stopped giving any problems during shutdown and it is doing it normally now.

792532 [Dell Latitude E6520][nVidia] Suspend causes white screen to appear

I can NOT confirm this bug for me. I tried at least several times already and it was going to suspend and then waking up NORMALLY. Again, I tried it just several times.

777310 [Dell Latitude E5520M/E6520] Firewire hdd is not automounted
I did not try that. However, there was some note during shutdown or booting that some driver is not working and probably this was a firewire 1394 one.

aa-hcl (aa-hcl) said : #9

Hi All,

I have now tested the some of the above issues:

1. Touchpad/Stick
    it is still recognized as mouse; touch and stick are considered as the same device, but vertical scrolling works (nice!) and tap to click works (also nice).

  QUESTION: is it possible to recognize touchpad and stick as different devices?

2.
792550 [Dell Latitude E6520][nVidia] Resuming from hibernate goes to a blank screen.

I have just tested it and I can NOT confirm this. The laptop was even playing sound track, I put it to hibernation and then restored back, everything was normal and the soundtrack resumed playing nearly from the same place. I tried it in different situation and it works!

3.
792532 [Dell Latitude E6520][nVidia] Suspend causes white screen to appear

I tested it and again, it does not happen to me - everything works

All the best!

aa-hcl (aa-hcl) said : #10

Hi All,

update for ubuntu 12.04:

- now built-in dirver for touchpad/stick works fine - everything (i.e. scrolling, etc.) works and better than under windows 7!
- with 12.04 the battery life increased from ~4-5 hours to 7-8 hours (screen min brightness, no hard calculations)
- hibernated works nearly perfectly
- suspend works nearly perfectly

In summary, under 12.04 everything (i.e. what was sold by dell) works !

The only problem left is that USB3.0 EC card - USB 3.0 drive is not recognised during hot plug-in. After reboot it works fine.

All the best!

Jeff Lane (bladernr) said : #11

Great!

Regarding USB 3.0, this sounds more like an issue with your device being plugged in and recognized automatically. Perhaps a udev problem? I encourage you to file a bug against the kernel for this from a terminal like so:

ubuntu-bug linux

and be sure to adequately describe the issue regarding your USB 3.0 card and device not being recognized on insertion. It could be that this is actually just a matter of no udev rules for your device (it's new enough that udev doesn't know what to do with it on insertion.

You can test this out by running 'udevadm monitor' in a terminal and inserting and removing that card to see what happens. Below you will see what it shows when I unplug a USB key:

bladernr@klaatu:~/temp$ udevadm monitor
monitor will print the received events for:
UDEV - the event which udev sends out after rule processing
KERNEL - the kernel uevent

KERNEL[23819.835491] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/bsg/7:0:0:0 (bsg)
KERNEL[23819.835566] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/scsi_generic/sg3 (scsi_generic)
KERNEL[23819.835607] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/scsi_device/7:0:0:0 (scsi_device)
KERNEL[23819.835740] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/scsi_disk/7:0:0:0 (scsi_disk)
UDEV [23819.836497] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/bsg/7:0:0:0 (bsg)
UDEV [23819.836539] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/scsi_generic/sg3 (scsi_generic)
UDEV [23819.836566] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/scsi_device/7:0:0:0 (scsi_device)
UDEV [23819.836753] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/scsi_disk/7:0:0:0 (scsi_disk)
KERNEL[23819.844375] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/block/sdc/sdc1 (block)
KERNEL[23819.844608] remove /devices/virtual/bdi/8:32 (bdi)
KERNEL[23819.844773] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/block/sdc (block)
KERNEL[23819.844827] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0 (scsi)
KERNEL[23819.844866] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/scsi_host/host7 (scsi_host)
KERNEL[23819.844912] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7 (scsi)
KERNEL[23819.844966] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0 (usb)
UDEV [23819.845005] remove /devices/virtual/bdi/8:32 (bdi)
UDEV [23819.845282] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/block/sdc/sdc1 (block)
KERNEL[23819.845347] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1 (usb)
UDEV [23819.845393] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/scsi_host/host7 (scsi_host)
UDEV [23819.845767] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0/block/sdc (block)
UDEV [23819.845931] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7/target7:0:0/7:0:0:0 (scsi)
UDEV [23819.846140] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0/host7 (scsi)
UDEV [23819.846394] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1/1-1.1:1.0 (usb)
KERNEL[23819.852624] remove /host7/target7:0:0 (scsi)
UDEV [23819.854046] remove /host7/target7:0:0 (scsi)
UDEV [23819.856932] remove /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:1a.0/usb1/1-1/1-1.1 (usb)

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