i have thinkpad x201 tablet. when i ride in a car, the laptop shakes a lot. on win 7 i can lower sensitivity. is there a way to do this on ubuntu? at the moment i use virtualbox
Out of the box, Ubuntu won't auto-park your hard drive heads in response to a shock event generated by the APS accelerometer in your Thinkpad. Some hard drives (AFAIK, no stock Lenovo disks) also have their own independent system for head autoparking, but usually there's no way to disable those.
ThinkWiki's [Active Protection System] page has more info on how you can enable APS under Linux, including reducing sensitivity so a bump in the road isn't enough for it to park the disk heads.
If your car shakes so much that it frequently triggers its protection systems, I'd rather switch to an SSD. A normal HDD has some moving parts that really don't like much acceleration.
Notebook HDDs can take some accelertion (some more than 3.5" disks) but they have their limits. SSDs have no moving parts.
I don't know whether Ubuntu has APS enabled at all...