Sony Vaio VGN-P29VN/Q


Small. Slow. Shitty GPU. OK, no, that's a bit unfair. Lets have a look. This device has the infamous Poulsbo or GMA500 chipset from Intel, which was used for early Atom processors. The GPU is based on the PowerVR technology, and bought as IP by Intel. Without the proper license to provide open source drivers.
Yes. Intel bought the IP, and thus cant deliver a open source driver. There is a closed source Linux driver, but the development stopped years ago. That is quite Shitty. The Hardware on the other Hand, is quite neat. The Kyro II, which was the last dedicated PC GPU based on the PowerVR technology, was quite capable, cheap and efficient. Its predecessors, the PowerVR Cards, where also rather cheap and efficient.
The Technology is actually quite well fitted for the job: a cheap, efficient GPU to accompany for cheap, efficient Processor. And when using Windows, where there are decent drivers, its really a neat device. But under Linux, lacking decent drivers, the whole thing is quite shitty: no 3D acceleration, no Video acceleration, not even decent 2D acceleration. Dragging a Window is sluggish in a way i did not see since the late nineties. At least, the driver is now working and quite stable. Which is the case due to a lot of hard work from a few guys who reverse engineered the damned thing.

Features


Tested with Devuan and Manjaro.
  • Sony Vaio VGN-P29VN/Q, 8" UMPC
    • Intel Poulsbo SCH
      • Intel Atom Z530, 1.6GHz 2W TDP
      • 2048MB DDR2-533
        • That's all, folks!
      • 128GB SSD
      • Intel GMA 500
        • acceleration $file (3D $file, Video $file)
    • I/O
      • 8", 1600x768, picture quality is ok (not good, but ok)
        • brightness controls $file
      • Atheros AR928X
        • Wi-Fi $file, Bluetooth $file, (killswitch $file)
      • Gigabit Ethernet $file
        • only with a small port expander
      • 2 USB 2.0 $file
      • Headphone $file, Mic-in $file, Speaker $file, Mic $file
      • VGA $file
        • only with a small port expander
      • Card reader $file
      • Camera $file
        • 640x480 and piss poor quality
    • Power
      • cpufreq via acpi
      • S2R $file, S2D $file
      • Big (32Wh) and small (16Wh) Battery available
        • readily available on ebay, not too expensive expensive
      • overall power consumption is 4.6W-10W
      • ACPI events $file, keys $file
      • Absolutely silent
      • Runs around 2h with the small battery and 4h with the big one


Disposition


Sold in the great freeing-of-space of 2017.
total: 107.35ms (include: 1.35, request: 0.54, trace: 0.34, init: 1.74, load: 0.01, parse: 100.68, menu: 0.94, template: 1.69, minify: 0.05)