Some Design Flaws
To our way of thinking, Sony devoted too little thought and effort to ergonomics in parts of its design. When the user sits in front of this laptop, the label for the WLAN switch is impossible to read (because it's entirely out of view). The buttons for volume and mute are also easier to feel than to see. Sitting in a normal position in front of the unit, you might not even notice them at first.
Interestingly, Sony attempts to protect the Modem-Connector and one of the USB ports from dust with a cheap-looking, flaccid plastic flap. Why this is necessary remains a question, especially since neither the other USB port on the outside left of the case, nor the RJ-45 port on the back of the case, are likewise protected against dust and dirt.
The left side of the laptop is where you'll find both USB 2.0 ports, plus the PCMCIA slot and a 56K modem port.
Why does Sony provide such a cheap flap to protect the modem connector and second USB port?
In an earlier review of the 1000 Series laptops from Averatec, we already determined that these kinds of flaps aren't good for much, as the following picture illustrates clearly.
Our experiences with Averatec's AV1050 sub-laptop showed us that such flaps wear out quickly under heavy use.