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Old 06-27-2008, 06:40 AM   #1
Registered: Jun 2008
Posts: 81

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Laptop battery problem under linux


Although i'm new to linux i'm not sure this question belong in this part of the forum. Anyway.. I have an older laptop, a Acer Travelmate 2350 on which i'm running linux to maybe learn something new. I started a while ago with opensuse 10.3 which worked fine. But as i wanted to try something else i installed Fedora 9 instead, again things worked fine overall, except for one thing; the battery meter, or the whole power managing thing. The battery meter in gnome power manager reports my energy level to be no higher than 33%, and reports i'm running on battery although the computer is plugged to the wall. If i remove the power cable and insert it again the computer reports that i'm running on external power, but once again it reaches no higher than 33%. After many hours searching for a solution (without finding one) i discovered that the info file under /proc/acpi/battery/BAT1 contained wrong information about the battery. It reported (among other things) i had a 4300 mAh battery, but it is 2150 mAh in reality. And since the battery is old it's real capacity is around 1455 mAh which is 33% of 4300, in other words, the charge is calculated on wrong capacity. Anyway i got tired and went back to opensuse, but this time the newest version, 11.0, only to discovery the same agonising problem. But, here's the interesting thing; if i start up the computer (the meter still reporting 33%) and then remove the battery for a few seconds (with cable still connected of course) and then insert it again, all off a sudden the battery information is correct, the meter reports 98 % to full. And everything stays fine until next reboot, then it's back to 33 % again.. Any ideas?

Excuse my bad english, i'm just a poorly educated swede:-)
Old 06-27-2008, 06:49 AM   #2
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Registered: May 2008
Location: planet earth
Distribution: Debian
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No ideas other than to check the configuration file and correct it so that you don't have to play around on every reboot.

The only other thing is - if you know someone with the kit to test the battery, then test it. Using bad batteries is not recommended; you can usually find a direct replacement from reputable battery dealers.
Old 06-27-2008, 07:18 AM   #3
Registered: Apr 2008
Location: ITALY
Distribution: Ubuntu 7.10
Posts: 62

Rep: Reputation: 15
same problem with Ubuntu 7.10, and a laptop Samsung X20. At boot shows 33% battery.
I thought it was the battery worn out, though the battery is still pretty new.


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