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I have ubuntu 12.04 lts running on my sony vaio E-series (vpceb44en). I have followed the post How to permanently set screen brightness level in Ubuntu 12.04 on Dell Vostro 2420 laptop? on howto address the issue. It didn't work in my case as after reboot the screen brightness goes to default maximum. Even tried with third party xbacklight, didn't work either. I have Radeon hd5470 card on my machine.

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Please include output of ls /sys/class/backlight/*/brightness in you question. Have you installed the drivers What is the correct way to install ATI Catalyst Video Drivers (fglrx)? –  Web-E Nov 19 '13 at 10:39
    
Sorry, a bit late in responding back!!! It works randomly- sometimes the brightness is set as configured, and sometimes it starts with default maximum!!! The brightness manager is acpi_video0. And I have the drivers installed for ATI as well and checked it with fglrxinfo command: display: :0 screen: 0 OpenGL vendor string: Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. OpenGL renderer string: ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5000 Series OpenGL version string: 4.2.11627 Compatibility Profile Context. Any further suggestions!!?? –  YouSER Dec 2 '13 at 15:00
    
Issue was with old drivers. Just updated my ATI Catalyst driver. The changes made in the file /etc/rc.local works properly now. The updated drivers are as follows: OpenGL vendor string: Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. OpenGL renderer string: ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5000 Series OpenGL version string: 4.3.12618 Compatibility Profile Context 8.84.6 –  YouSER Feb 26 at 11:24

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