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Lenovo Q150, OCZ vertex 2, 4Gb of Memory and Ubuntu 11.04

This time I wanted to speed up the the Q150.
I love the Q150, since I got it the disk access seems slow and I wanted to add a bit more memory for disk cache and desktop speed up.

So I got a 60Gb OCZ Vertex 2 for 129$ and corsair 4Gb DDRII 800Mhz for 99$, pics below.

So here are some basic stats with the new hardware.

30s Boot (11s for bios and grub 19s for ubuntu)
5s suspend sleep
5s suspend wake
4s shutdown

Disk speed for OCZ vertex 2
$ sudo hdparm -T -t /dev/sda1
Timing cached reads: 1656 MB in 2.00 seconds = 827.89 MB/sec
Timing buffered disk reads: 582 MB in 3.00 seconds = 193.75 MB/sec
Everything is snappier:
  • Firefox loads in 2s
  • Chromium in 1s
  • LibreOffice Calc in 6s.
  • Hulu desktop loads and plays video in 10s.
The machine is still using a Atom CPU, so no miracles can be expected. With almost no noise and 24W power consumption this machine is very useful. It can also attach to the back of any monitor or TV and provides a great web computer to play mpeg videos at full speed and browse websites.

Q150 with SSD and 4Gb DDR mem


  1. Keep up the posts! I enjoy seeing what you have done with the Q150.

  2. Thanks for your blog!

    Are the issues the same with HDMI-sound and wlan @Ubuntu 11.04?

    I am using yavdr 0.3a and there is no panel for the spdif on alsamixer with the Nvidia-Card.

  3. Hi Mczett,

    With Ubuntu 11.04 the HDMI sound and the wifi, is all configured out of the box. Actually all hardware for the Q150 is detected and configured out of the box.

  4. Thanks for all your Blogs. You are go to for the Q150.

    I just put 11.04 on and finally got wireless working. Still have no sound from the HDMI.

  5. That's wonderful that the wireless finally works out of the box. Is there a USB stick build of 11.04 anywhere?

  6. Did everyone with 11.04 on their Q150 install it over 10.10 or did you do a fresh install?

    I'm stuck in the mud with the wireless and HDMI issues.

  7. Hi neil,
    just download a iso of 11.04 in a ubuntu 10.10 and Sytem->administration->Startup Disk Creator.

    Hi Ben,
    I did a fresh install, but I have a separate home partition and root partition, I always format the root partition and do a fresh install, and always keep the same home so when I log in I never lose anything. I just need to install all non default apps.

    Hi Neil,
    If you install nvidia drivers sound should work out of the box for HDMI, the think open source drivers don't support sound over hdmi. After installing the nvidia drivers just go to sound Preferences and select Hardware->HDAC to on, and disable the other sound devices.

  8. hey
    i got HDMI sound working.

    My setup:
    Lenovo Q150
    11.04 Natty Alpha 3 (no partition on drive)
    Samsung 46inch 1080p

    its a little tricky to get HDMI sound,took me a bit of luck and Lafa's help. if you would like a USB build of mine i would be happy to send it to you. i have not put on XBMC or tested the wireless. leave a contact on this board and i will find you.

    Joe C

  9. Hey Lafa,

    Do you have the part number for that Corvair 4GB DDR-2 800mhz RAM module?

    Lenovo says 2GB is max on my Q150, but you did say (and as seen in your BIOS settings) that the 4GB worked on yours. I just want to make sure I use the same RAM in mine as you did since I know that sometimes memory upgrades (especially in an unsupported configuration) may not always work.

  10. Hi Jim

    Here is the one I got

    But I think any DDR2 PC6400 4GB single module 800 MHz module will work fine.

  11. Lafa,

    Yeah, thanks for that. I had just wanted to go with a tried and true p/n because I've had numerous situations in the past where I've put in different brand and p/n memory modules with the same exact specs and they would not boot, and then just by changing to a different brand it would work fine.

    There are sometimes hit and miss compatibility issues that can thwart memory upgrade attempts, and so for this reason I usually always try to get exact part numbers from people who have actually tried them on the target device. This is not always an issue, but if the information is available, then it doesn't hurt to see if I can get it, in case it turned out to be relevant.

    At any rate, thanks for your info. It is nice to know that I can go to 4GB on this because my old Q110 also said max mem was 2GB module added in, but it also had a 1GB module embedded onto the motherboard, so with 2GB installed, it had 3GB total. Then when I got my new Q150 I had been disappointed that I could only put in 2GB. I'm glad somebody like you has done this experimentation with the unsupported configuration and tried the 4GB memory.

    I already had the SSD installed, but I just never tried the 4GB. Kudos to you...

  12. Hi Lafa, please see my comment below.

    "Hi Neil,
    If you install nvidia drivers sound should work out of the box for HDMI, the think open source drivers don't support sound over hdmi. After installing the nvidia drivers just go to sound Preferences and select Hardware->HDAC to on, and disable the other sound devices."

    In my case I had to play with the setting options for the NVIDIA hdmi card. It looks like only one setting works for me: "Digital Stereo (HDMI) nr 4 Output". None of the others produce a sound.

    At the end of the test I switched back to my external (i.e. basic sound card) speakers -- the particular TV I have has terrible sound.

    For completeness sake: I am running 11.10, using gnome classic (shouldn't matter, but just in case); I have a Vizio 37" TV.

    p.s. Also, thanks for keeping such a detailed log on the matter and the clear instructions on how to get things to work! Has been a great help -- keep up the great work.

  13. Hi Lafa,

    Just ordered a new SSD for my Q150. After prying open the case, I am having trouble remoing the hd. There seem to be 4 screws holding the hd in place. 3 of the 4 seem to be semi-blocked, but the worst one is blocked by the screw hole for the stand. How did you remove the hard drive?


  14. It was sometime ago, but I think I removed also removed the board screws from the plastic base and after the motherboard was accessible, I removed the disk after that.


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