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Acer Extensa 4420


This is a guide to running Linux with the Acer Extensa 4420 laptop.

This guide is intended to provide you details on how well this laptop works with Linux and which modules you need to configure. For details on how to actually install and configure the required modules have a look at our guides section for distribution specific instructions.

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NameAcer Extensa 4420
ProcessorAMD Athlon 64
Screen14.1“ WXGA Widescreen
Optical DriveDVD+-RW
GraphicsATI Mobility Radeon X1250
NetworkEthernet, Acer InviLink 802.11bg

Linux Compatibility

ProcessorTestedWorks on Debian GNU/Linux–AMD64
ScreenTestedWorks on Debian GNU/Linux–AMD64
HDDTestedWorks on Debian GNU/Linux–AMD64
Optical DriveTestedWorks on Debian GNU/Linux–AMD64
GraphicsTestedWorks on Debian GNU/Linux–AMD64
SoundNot Tested
EthernetTestedWorks on Debian GNU/Linux–AMD64
WirelessNot Tested
56K ModemNot Tested
USBNot Tested
FirewireNot Tested
Card ReaderNot Tested
PCMCIANot Tested
CameraNot Tested


You can enter any specific notes with running Linux on the Acer Extensa 4420 here.
++Debian GNU/Linux had no problems identifying my hardware.
++This laptop comes with the hard drive already partitioned into two or three sections.
++It was easy to write the minimal install ISO file to a DVD and use a wired network to download the rest.


You can enter a summary of how well the Acer Extensa 4420 works with Linux here.


Zac, 2014/04/29 02:43

i have successfully installed Arch Linux and the wifi switch no longer works. Help!!!

Unknown, 2013/07/08 22:24

I have an Acer Extensa 4420-5963 and got to install Ubuntu 12.04 LTS via CD-R and everything works fine. I haven't tried the internet yet since my connection needs to be setup.

Only a couple of problems: Suspend mode freezes when trying to get out of it and Ubuntu won't detect my graphics

Ryan, 2012/01/27 22:54

I have installed linux numerous times on this guy. The biggest issue with this laptop is the ATI Video. There is no proprietary driver after Ubuntu 8.04… something to do with ATI dropping support for some particular integrated chips. If you want an improved 2-D experience or any kind of 3-D, you have to run 8.04. Other than that, the wireless card doesn't work out of the box, but it will work after installing and downloading all the updates (might take 2 update/restart sequences actually). When you reboot, the system will tell you there are proprietary drivers available. Download them, and now your wireless is good to go. I have the Best Buy one without the bluetooth or webcam so I can't speak to those components. If you don't already own this laptop, I would recommend not getting it for running Linux. It will do the trick, but there are better options.

platosadvisor, 2011/03/23 21:30

I've installed Ubuntu 10.10 on this machine, I haven't tested most things (IR port, Bluetooth, etc…) I'm more concerned with the weird set up of the WiFi.
WiFi mostly works, as long as I don't touch it. Browsing is a little slow, but tolerable. The WiFi light on the front is backwards, it's off when enabled and turns on when I use the button to disable it. Weird, but not really a problem. The problem is that all of the programs/screenlets that I've found to monitor my network traffic indicate that it's disabled… Even though I'm using it right now.

I plan to try Ndiswrapper as mentioned above. Does anyone have any other ideas?

oumaru mansaray, 2010/12/30 21:12

I install Linux mint on acer extensa 4420 and some of the driver are missing.the driver below are the one that are missing.
wireless driver, bluetooth driver, and webcam driver.

Matt, 2009/12/15 01:51

I run Arch Linux x86_64 on mine. Wireless works great with the broadcom-wl driver (restricted, but it works, so who cares?). USB, card reader, PCMCIA, and cameras work with zero problems. 3D graphics work well with open source ATI drivers. I can't get the S-Video port to work anymore, but I don't have much need for it anyway.

dokuro, 2009/11/05 03:23

i had wifi working from 8.10 to 9.04, then i finish installing 9.10 everything worked better, but i have no wifi… this is so bad, loosing wifi, it did not worked on windows (and we rarely use the windows part) but the ubuntus worked great, exept now it does not even know is there (the wifi card)…

hope less now…

martin the genius, 2009/10/15 04:20

for wireless driver on any linux, download ndiswrapper (google search it) to adapt a windows inf driver for linux. either use package manager for auto install/ and ubuntu has option of graphical interface, otherwise terminal. Default linux driver for most wireless cards makes internet run too slow, or not able to connect, so make sure to 'blacklist' the default driver when using ndiswrapper. Ndiswrapper manual is POORLY written, so u may have to do some research (ubuntu has well supported wikis on this info), other linux os requires some experience.

Phil, 2009/07/21 02:13

Linux Mint 6 (Ubuntu 8.10) works better than Mint 7 (9.04). The graphics card lost its support from ATI, so videos are choppy, and the overall graphics experience was terrible.

Using an 8.10 Ubuntu version the compiz effects work fine on minimal, and videos, etc run great.

Webcam and internal mic work w/skype. Card reader works. Broadcom wireless only worked after restricted driver was used.

S-video out works, but I could only get it to work in clone mode.

eDk, 2009/07/18 23:09

Hi guys!
I install debian on my extensa, and have many problems with the wifi drivers.
Can anyone install correctly this drivers?

henry, 2009/04/14 19:20

Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex (8.10) Just Works. However, to much tweaking has to be done.

Ubuntu sucks if you want to say, watch podcasts. Lucky me, I also have an iMac.

I bought Mandriva Powerpack 2009 (€ 49.00) (say “mandreeva”) because of the proprietary video codecs and better GUI (KDE 4 - Gnome is so behind the curve of all GUIs in all OSs…) but the thing didn't even boot.

I'm sorry to say, Mandriva shipped out a beta.

I'm going to install PC-BSD now, goodbye…

Will, 2009/03/10 13:16

I run Xubuntu compiled for AMD64, and have had no driver problems. Everything works from the initial install, including wireless. I have not been able to test the IR port, modem or lightscribe feature of the drive. I would recommend anyone putting some version of Ubuntu on this box NOT use the proprietary ATI driver, as it will disable suspend/hibernate (as ATI says in its release notes). These features work fine with the open source driver. The only major gripe I have with running linux on this laptop is that the battery is used nearly twice as fast as when running XP (3+ hrs on XP vs 1.5 *tops* Ubuntu). It seems to be a problem with the APIC and ACPI subsystems being tailored to Windoze.

XP, Xubuntu dual boot
AMD Athlon 64 dual core TK-57, x86 family 15 model 104 stepping 2
ATI Radeon x1250

Ray, 2008/09/27 14:00

Ultimate Ubuntu on Acer 4420-5963-dual boot w/Vista

I have successfullly installed Ultimate Ubuntu, based on Hardy Heron, on this laptop. Once I downloaded Wifi-Radar, the broadcom card worked and after I had input security key, I was online.
So far, Ubuntu is working fine.
Had one trouble, though. Vista keeps asking to do a recovery, however, there is an option to boot a recovered Vista and everything there is fine.

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acer_extensa_4420.txt · Last modified: 2010/10/11 14:01 (external edit)
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