All normal function as if on a desktop works, including nvidia drivers when installed. (Effects look great.) Sound is very loud at just 50% volume. I'm surprised at the effectiveness of the speakers.
Fn + Esc(Suspend) does suspend the laptop, but problems are encountered with suspending. (See below.)
Volume is controllable via both the volume buttons and the keys assigned the function (Fn + PageUp/PageDn/End).
The keyboard eject combo (Fn + F10) does eject the CD drive tray, but only if there is a CD in the drive. (This may be normal.)
The monitor-setting toggle hotkey (Fn + F8) toggles between having the laptop screen and the connected screen in a mirrored display, and having them in an extended desktop display setup. (The VGA port works)
The printer port works at least partially.
The battery hotkey (Fn + F3) provokes a popup notification about the current battery state (Charged, charging, or discharging, and the percentage when either of the last two.)
|What doesn't work:|
The wireless hotkey (Fn + F2) seems to do nothing. This isn't a problem, as it was probably mapped to open a Dell-specific program. I might investigate attempting to map it to a useful function.
When nvidia drivers are installed, bootsplash is horrendously low resolution and flickers. Under Ubuntu (on the other partition) with a new kernel update, the bootsplash fails to display at all and a small "northern lights" distortion effect occurs instead at the top of the screen. Startup manager does not resolve this.
Hibernation results in the laptop, upon powerup, producing nothing but seemingly random patterns of colored lines on the screen as if a major hardware error has occurred, and will do nothing unless a hard restart is performed.
Suspending the laptop to RAM produces the same effects as hibernation with the nvidia driver enabled. However, if the nvidia driver is not enabled, these effects are delayed. After waking up the computer, the laptop can be used for an indeterminate amount of time before the screen freezes and
develops vertical lines across distorts the whole display, requiring no less than a hard restart.
|What was done to make it work:|
Uninstalled nvidia drivers. I don't need them to use the laptop.
I might experiment with adding a hibernation partition in attempts to get hibernation working. I'd really like to be able to suspend this thing somehow, without breaking anything.
The native wireless card (Broadcom) is detected and the computer attempts to use it, but it appears completely useless for finding or connecting to wireless networks. I think that this issue is a cause of the hardware piece having failed, prior to installation.
EDIT: Non-issue as of recent since I replaced this card with an Intel wireless card. Very easy to replace on this laptop.
One setting above mute on the volume scale, at least according to the increments that the volume buttons on the keyboard preform, produces the same effect as muting. No sound will be produced quieter than a certain amount. Fine tuning this with software volume controls works just fine.