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Last reply by 05-31-2015 Unsolved
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2 Bronze
2 Bronze
54606

My experiences (Ubuntu 15.04) - maybe it helps someone

I got my XPS 13 Dev Edition (FHD, 8GB, 256GB) end of last week. I had read all I could about it and thus decided to move to 15.04 immediately. I also ordered an intel 7265 card.

I backuped the original disk before I Installed Ubuntu 15.04. Worked perfectly without any problems. Astoundingly even the broadcom wireless card worked immediately, so I did not have to exchange the card.

I blacklisted the modules mei and mei_me as I read they might lead to kernel panics and are not really useful anyway.

First testing went perfectly. Suspend and hibernate worked without problems (VERY important to me). I only suffered from the key repeat bug here and then. I could solve this later with the BIOS A04 upgrade.

However, when I installed a syncing program (syncthing.net), I started having many kernel panics during suspend/hibernate (blinking caps lock). I directly suspected the wireless card as the network activity was the only difference in the system. After the exchange with the intel 7265 card these kernel panics vanished and have so far never reappeared.

However, I noticed that I got some other infrequent hibernation problems (black screen after resuming). I tried to debug the problem and found out that this really only happens when the resume process has finished. So I suspected a GPU problem here.

I thus went over and installed the newest mainline kernel available (4.1rc5). This exhibited very strong vsync and hsync problems, which I could solve with the kernel parameter i915.enable_ips=0. (btw, I also had these sync problems in a very, very light form also on kernel 3.19). With this constellation I haven't experienced any hibernation problems so far. It currently seems that the laptop is running perfectly with all features working. Even the newest VirtualBox compiles without problems with this kernel.

I ran PowerTop and had it do it's autotune magic. Then, with wifi connected and syncthing, thunderbird and firefox running but idle (firefox only three simple pages open), backlight to about 20%, keylight off, LibreOffice open and typing, PowerTop reported an expected battery life of about 15 hours. Sounds pretty good.

Let's hope that no other problems will occur, then I am very happy with the purchase.

In summary, this is my system:

  • Ubuntu 15.04 new install
  • Kernel upgrade to 4.1rc5
  • boot command option i915.enable_ips=0
  • exchanged broadcom wifi card with intel 7265
  • blacklisted modules mei and mei_me

Maybe it helps someone.


Michael

Replies (5)
2 Jasper
2 Jasper
919

Great tips, thanks. Where did you order the wireless card from? I got one from NewEgg but it looks like the wrong card. In the iFixIt teardown, the MiniPCI wireless card looks like it mounts with one screw at the top center of the card. The one I ordered mounts with 2 screws.

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
919

Sorry, can't help here. I am located in Germany and got it from a local retailer.

2 Jasper
2 Jasper
919

Either blacklisting mei and mei_me or adding the kernel option for i915 have fixed my kernel panic issues. Thanks again. Before I added those options I would get a kernel panic almost 1/3 of the time putting my XPS to sleep. Today I must have put it to sleep about 10 times to test it and it never panicked once.

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
919

I followed Michaels instructions and upgraded to Kernel 4.1rc5 on Ubuntu 15.04.

During kernel installation the Broadcom module will fail to build and after reboot you will encounter yourself without wifi (again). There is also a respective bug filed on launchpad.

For those not having the option to exchange the card against an Intel 7265, I wanted to point out that the quickfix mentioned on this bugtracker made Broadcom wifi work again on my system:

bugs.launchpad.net/.../10

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
919

The XPS 13 doesn't use Mini-PCIe cards-- it uses M.2 cards, also known as NGFF.

There's plenty of reputable sellers on eBay offering brand-new Intel cards.

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