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Fanfold Paper
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎04-20-2018
Location: US
Views: 127,488
Message 1 of 25

Thunderbolt 3 Dock Issues with Monitors

I have a new T580, Thunderbolt 3 dock and 2 new 27" monitors.  So far so good, except for this piece of junk Thunderbolt 3 dock.  It is so frustrating and I'm about reasy to send it all back.


When I originally received all of this equipment a couple weeks ago, the first dock did not work.  SUpport sent me a new one and it was not easy to actually get both of external monitors working.  Went through the firware updates and all of that mess.  Finally I did get everything working.....  On Monday, I left on a business trip.  Am back home now and plugged my 580 into the dock and neither external monitor will turn on.


I have the thunderbolt cable from the dock connected to the right port on my 580.  My computer is charging.  The connected Ethernet cable is working.  I have a USB drive plugged into the dock and my computer recognizes that.  But neither of my monitors will turn on.  I have both of them connected via DP cables that came with the monitors.  If I unplug either of the DP cables and plug them back in, the monitor will display "Power Saving Mode" for a couple seconds and that's it.


Nothing with my setup has changed....  since Monday and I'm stuck staring at my laptop screen and neither of my 27" monitors.....


I have restarted my 580.  I have unplugged the dock and plugged it back in.  I have unplugged the thunderbolt cable from my 580 multiple times.  No luck.... 


Would appreciate any insight you may have.  This Thunderbolt dock is about ready to get sent back because it should not be this difficult to get an external display workingl.  Thanks


Posts: 1,984
Registered: ‎02-27-2012
Location: EC
Views: 127,412
Message 2 of 25

Re: Thunderbolt 3 Dock Issues with Monitors

Hi, welcome to the forum.


I'm sorry but I don't have your configuration, nor any Thunderbolt 3 experience. I can only suggest you the basic steps I would do in your case.


This is the support site for the T580 I would confirm:

1) BIOS is on 1.10 / 26 Mar 2018 level (there are a few thunderbold updates listed there)

2) Intel Thunderbolt software for Windows 10 64-bit - ThinkPad P52s, T580, X1 Yoga / 20 Apr... driver on that level.

3) Thunderbolt Firmware Update Tool for Windows 10 (64-bit) - ThinkPad P52s (Machine types: 20LB, 20LC)... (Machine types: 20L9, 20LA) -  14 /  25 Mar 2018


This is the support site for the Thunderbolt 3 dock. I would check:



ThinkPad Thunderbolt 3 Firmware (2.1 MB)

Not applicable

3.12.003 31th Oct 2017



ThinkPad Thunderbolt 3 Driver (18.3 MB)

Windows 10
Windows 7

1.001.1 15th Aug 2017


After confirming that you are on latest firmware and driver levels, and if you still have the display issue I have no more ideas of what else to try (except than opening a formal ticket to Lenovo).


It is always good to double check any video cable and adapter you may be using and even switching monitors for TV that you may find arround to see if there is a different behaviour. Some wild shot will be to double check that you are using the included USB-C cable that goes from the dock to the computer (It has to be Thunderbolt 3 Compliance).


Maybe the last try will be to try to find some other Thundebolt 3 machine and see if the Dock behaves the same way on a different machine.





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Fanfold Paper
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎04-20-2018
Location: US
Views: 127,387
Message 3 of 25

Re: Thunderbolt 3 Dock Issues with Monitors

Thanks for the reply.... I don't think any of that is my issue.  I have 2 Thunderbolt docks here (my home since I'm a home business).  My first one didn't work and another was sent to me and that's why I have 2.


After I originally posted, I decided to try the original dock that never worked.  Voila!  It worked.  So I had both monitors working and all was well.  Went to a client site today and obviously had to disconnect my computer from the dock.


Came home and plugged in the Thunderbolt cable (kept the lid closed) and pressed the power button on the dock.  No luck... neither monitor came on.  Opened the lid, computer is on.  Have unplugged the DP cables, thunderbolt cable, etc multiple times and no luck.  So it all worked this morning when I left.  Simply plugged in the Thunderbolt cable and no luck.  I've been online with regular support and "Tier 2" support and they are no help.  The latest tech told me they don't really troubleshoot these.  Their fix is to send a new one.  Well, I've already got 2 and I'm guessing a 3rd one won't have better results....


Think I might just send these back and get a new dock.  Problem is, all of the docks on Lenovo's site have crap reviews.... so I don't know if I want to trust one of those.......  any suggestions?

Fanfold Paper
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎04-20-2018
Location: US
Views: 127,343
Message 4 of 25

Re: Thunderbolt 3 Dock Issues with Monitors

So.... I have been able to get the dock to work, but compared to previous mechanical docks, I hate how it works.  Here's the procedure I follow now.


  1. Open lid of my T580 and login to Windows (fingerprint)
  2. Connect Thunderbolt cable
  3. Function F7 and go into Extend mode
  4. Turn off each of my monitors and then turn them back on
  5. They each come on with the extended screen
  6. Close the lid on my 580


I have not been able to get the monitors to work any other way.  Previous docks, you just connect it and turn on the computer and poof, monitors are recognized and it all works.  I've done the above procedure 4 times now and it has worked all 4 times...... so at least I'm able to use everything as intended.  Don't love it, but at least I can use my monitors.


Paper Tape
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎05-05-2018
Location: FI
Views: 127,162
Message 5 of 25

Re: Thunderbolt 3 Dock Issues with Monitors

For me problems with external monitor seems to be started with system update installed 4/25/2018 (Thunderbolt Controller + Intel Management Engine). I bougth my T580 + mechanical dock (ThinkPad Ultra Docking Station) a few months ago and at first everything worked OK. But since the update, every new day brings new uplesant surprises: some times it works fine with office monitor but then refuses to recongnize home monitor, then mouse started to freeze for a few seconds every few minutes, yesterday I got "snow" on the monitor and then Windows crushed. I have installed all updates (Windows + Lenovo) and seems all the problems are happening only with devices connected via the dock. My guess the problems are brought by the Thunderbolt driver update. Anyone experienced something similar?

Fanfold Paper
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎04-20-2018
Location: US
Views: 127,115
Message 6 of 25

Re: Thunderbolt 3 Dock Issues with Monitors

So... this method isn't working anymore.  Hit and miss and I am now doing it multiple times, rebooting, unplugging the Thunderbolt dock and back in, etc etc...... super frustrating!!!!!  Been trying for 15 minutes to get my monitors on and no luck.


Not sure if the April Windows 10 update screwed it up or not.  Chrome doesn't work right anymore because of that wonderful Microsoft patch.


Wishing I would of went with my gut and bought a Macbook for my business.......

What's DOS?
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎05-10-2018
Location: US
Views: 126,973
Message 7 of 25

Re: Thunderbolt 3 Dock Issues with Monitors

We've noticed that anything higher than the 1.08 BIOS firmware is causing these issues. Started with 1.09 and still continues with 1.10. Was hoping it would be resovled by now since laptops are now coming shipped out with 1.10 and we have to downgrade.

What's DOS?
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎08-13-2018
Location: AE
Views: 119,195
Message 8 of 25

Re: Thunderbolt 3 Dock Issues with EITHERNET CABLE

After most recent firmware update on my X1 Yoga 3rd Gen..once i connect PC with Tunderbolt3 Eithernet yellow or green light wont blink and net is not connected.. I have pull it and replug again only then it starts working and gets connected...I am little concerned please advise solution 

Paper Tape
Posts: 9
Registered: ‎08-16-2018
Location: US
Views: 118,285
Message 9 of 25

Re: Thunderbolt 3 Dock Issues with EITHERNET CABLE

I think I might have a fix. When I unplug and then plug back in I have all sorts of problems - only one or no screens not working, no USB no Ethernet... 


But now what I do is press the button on the dock -PC turns off.... then press it again... PC turns back on , I think it is sleep or hybernate or something - it is instant really (I have lenovo thinkpad X1 yoga 3rd gen) and it works now!


Ill try it on my dock at home to see if I can replicate and repost. 

Fanfold Paper
Posts: 13
Registered: ‎07-25-2016
Location: US
Views: 106,838
Message 10 of 25

Re: Thunderbolt 3 Dock Issues with Monitors


I'm having problems with my new T480 and the Lenovo Thunderbolt 3 docking station, my Lenovo Vantage update tool says "Intel Thunderbolt Controller driver v."  failed installation and never works when trying to click the Retry install button. My monitors flicker randomly and the computer is un-usable on this dock.  Can you help. 


The Lenovo Vantage tool also says "Intel Management Engine Software v." Failed install 9/21/18 and clicking the Retry install button does NOT work.


The screens filcker - I have two monitors hooked up the the dock - both DVI to Display port connection on the Dock. So they are hooked up properly. and 

and USB KEYBOARD goes out and I have to reboot the system whenever I touch the dock - the problems arise... 


How do I get the latest updates for the dock ? or do I try another dock or return this one?


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