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great_baldini
Blue Screen Again
Posts: 16
Registered: ‎03-21-2018
Location: PS
Views: 24,521
Message 1 of 12

Is X1 Carbon 6th a failure for Linux?

I'm reading this guy's blog post about the issues with the 6th generation of X1 Carbon:
https://mensfeld.pl/2018/07/lenovo-thinkpad-x1-carbon-6th-gen-2018-review-sad-story-of-a-potentially...

At first, he made a blog post about how to make it run properly with Ubuntu 18.04, but then it seems he just lost patience...is the service really that bad?

jnWibble
Punch Card
Posts: 32
Registered: ‎03-27-2018
Location: GB
Views: 24,434
Message 2 of 12

Re: Is X1 Carbon 6th a failure for Linux?

The hardware and service problems reported in that post beset only some - I do not know what percentage - of users and X1 G6s.

 

As to problems with Linux, there are quite a few. To wit:

  • sleeping;
  • thermal throttling (at least arguably or on some models);
  • the trackpoint will not work when the trackpad is enabled (there are workarounds, but none of them worked for me);
  • Lenovo supplied no fingerprint driver for Linux (though the community has one that apparently just about works);
  •  Lenovo's 'bootable' BIOS-updates are bootable only via CD drive (which the X1 lacks) unless one fiddles with them, and Lenovo supplied no firmware update tool that runs under Linux (though a third-party now has).

 

As I have begun to indicate, all or most of the above problems are at least somewhat solvable by users, but it does seem that Lenovo does not care about Linux at all.

 

The wonderful ArchWiki has information on most of the problems that I have listed.

anx1
Punch Card
Posts: 24
Registered: ‎03-30-2018
Location: SE
Views: 24,356
Message 3 of 12

Re: Is X1 Carbon 6th a failure for Linux?

Not a failure but certainly not ideal for the "regular user". As for me I have solved all the little annoyances but that is not an ideal solution. 

 

One big thing is that Lenovo just recently supported LVFS (Linux Vendor Firmware Service), which means that you can update your BIOS via your Linux distribution (hurray!). 

 

I still like this machine and I hope that it will be enough for me in the coming years. Hopefully Lenovo will value the Linux users more and if so, they will probably be my choice of computer in the future as well. 

ardevd
Ctrl-Alt-Del
Posts: 42
Registered: ‎08-25-2017
Location: NO
Views: 24,344
Message 4 of 12

Re: Is X1 Carbon 6th a failure for Linux?

BIOS updates for the X1 G6 is delivered through LVFS so you dont need to fiddle with USB booting at all. If you run the Gnome desktop environments you will get BIOS updates through the Gnome Software app. Otherwise you can simply use the fwupd command line utility available to pretty much all Linux distributions through their respectable package managers.

 

Generally, the primary issue for modern Thinkpads in terms of Linux support is the fact that Lenovo is multi-sourcing components such as the trackpoint and touchpad which makes it hard for Linux driver developers to do their job. 

jnWibble
Punch Card
Posts: 32
Registered: ‎03-27-2018
Location: GB
Views: 24,269
Message 5 of 12

Re: Is X1 Carbon 6th a failure for Linux?

Does anyone else here find that when the bios updater - the one delivered via LVFS - runs, it makes many hash loud beeps?

Community SeniorMod
Community SeniorMod
Posts: 7,079
Registered: ‎01-13-2008
Location: US
Views: 24,199
Message 6 of 12

Re: Is X1 Carbon 6th a failure for Linux?


@jnWibble wrote:
...
  •  Lenovo's 'bootable' BIOS-updates are bootable only via CD drive (which the X1 lacks) unless one fiddles with them, and Lenovo supplied no firmware update tool that runs under Linux (though a third-party now has).


Not sure if this is the "fiddling" you're referring to.  Lenovo does supply tools for building a bootable BIOS update flash drive.  It's inside the .exe - so it does require some fiddling.  At least it's there - as it is for other recent ThinkPads.

 

Update ThinkPad BIOS with Bootable Flash Drive

 

FYI,

Z.


The large print: please read the Community Participation Rules before posting. Include as much information as possible: model, machine type, operating system, and a descriptive subject line. Do not include personal information: serial number, telephone number, email address, etc.


The fine print: I do not work for, nor do I speak for Lenovo. Unsolicited private messages will be ignored - questions and answers belong in the forum so that others may contribute and benefit. ... GeezBlog

 

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jnWibble
Punch Card
Posts: 32
Registered: ‎03-27-2018
Location: GB
Views: 24,190
Message 7 of 12

Re: Is X1 Carbon 6th a failure for Linux?

Dear Z

 

The page you linked contains this sentence: 'Locate the downloaded .exe and run it. ' We are here, on this thread, discussing Linux. So, no. exes (without Wine or Virtual Machines). The aforementioned page mentions a utility called 'geteltorito'. That is the fiddle to which I referred.

MountainX
Token Ring
Posts: 104
Registered: ‎11-21-2013
Location: US
Views: 24,187
Message 8 of 12

Re: Is X1 Carbon 6th a failure for Linux?


@jnWibble wrote:

The hardware and service problems reported in that post beset only some - I do not know what percentage - of users and X1 G6s.

 

As to problems with Linux, there are quite a few. To wit:

  • sleeping;
  • thermal throttling (at least arguably or on some models);
  • the trackpoint will not work when the trackpad is enabled (there are workarounds, but none of them worked for me);
  • Lenovo supplied no fingerprint driver for Linux (though the community has one that apparently just about works);
  •  Lenovo's 'bootable' BIOS-updates are bootable only via CD drive (which the X1 lacks) unless one fiddles with them, and Lenovo supplied no firmware update tool that runs under Linux (though a third-party now has).

 


I agree with you and I hope Lenovo will begin to take Linux support more seriously, However, based on my experience running Linux on several ThinkPads, I think the experience is not so bad. It could always be better, but Linux on ThinkPads is still the best option for me. I love that Lenovo doesn't void my warranty support when they see I'm running Linux. That's a huge plus.

 

Here are my experiences with the issues you listed:

- sleeping: I decided not to worry about lack of S3. The suspend process works fine as is, and my battery life is great.

- thermal throttling: I think this is an issue on almost all ultrabooks with any OS. As you said, with Linux there is a workaround for those who want to pursue it. Again, I decided not to worry about it because performance is fine for my use-case.

- fingerprint reader: I would like to see this addressed

- I have an easy set of steps worked out for BIOS updates. Here are my steps:

 

In this example, the downloaded Lenovo BIOS image is named n1wur22w.iso. I have the geteltorito utility installed.

cd /path/to/downloaded/bios/image
/usr/bin/geteltorito.pl -o n1wur22w.img n1wur22w.iso
insert USB stick
	#OPTIONAL: wipe USB stick (e.g., gdisk /dev/sdf, then "z" for zap; or use dd)
lsblk
dd if=/path/to/downloaded/bios/image/n1wur22w.img of=/dev/sdX status=progress bs=1M iflag=fullblock
sync
# If needed, change computer bios settings so it will boot from non-UEFI boot disks
boot
	#OPTIONAL: have the Lenovo dock connected if the system uses a dock
In the screen that appears, select Update system program and follow the instructions on the screen.
Community SeniorMod
Community SeniorMod
Posts: 7,079
Registered: ‎01-13-2008
Location: US
Views: 24,181
Message 9 of 12

Re: Is X1 Carbon 6th a failure for Linux?


@jnWibble wrote:

Dear Z

 

The page you linked contains this sentence: 'Locate the downloaded .exe and run it. ' We are here, on this thread, discussing Linux. So, no. exes (without Wine or Virtual Machines). The aforementioned page mentions a utility called 'geteltorito'. That is the fiddle to which I referred.


Hey, whatever floats your boat.

 

In my working life one of my ongoing tasks was writing and maintaining Linux (and Solaris) drivers.  I'm entirely aware that this is a Linux thread, but sometimes I'm willing to forgo purity and just do whatever I need to do to get from A to B Smiley Wink

 

Just wanted to make sure people knew that the option was available.

 

Now, back to your discussion in progress...

 

Z.


The large print: please read the Community Participation Rules before posting. Include as much information as possible: model, machine type, operating system, and a descriptive subject line. Do not include personal information: serial number, telephone number, email address, etc.


The fine print: I do not work for, nor do I speak for Lenovo. Unsolicited private messages will be ignored - questions and answers belong in the forum so that others may contribute and benefit. ... GeezBlog

 

  Communities:   English    Deutsch    Español    Português    Русскоязычное    Česká    Slovenská    Українська   Polski    Türkçe    Moto English

alxolr
What's DOS?
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎11-11-2018
Location: MD
Views: 20,392
Message 10 of 12

Re: Is X1 Carbon 6th a failure for Linux?

I do not advice to buy this laptop if you plan to use Ubuntu, there are plenty of issues and for the amount of money lenovo charge it is not worth it. I run Ubuntu 18.04 Issue:

- Battery Life, you can just never go on a long trip with this laptop.
- Network, it constantly does not recognize any wifi networks after locking the screen.
- Trackpad and the Mouse buttons are just not working when locking and login out.
- Getting pretty hot when using it with a docking station, lenovo one, Docking Pro

I invested in my working environment 2700 EUR, (laptop + docking station) and I am constantly forced to do restarts during my work some of the time I lose my work! For sure do not buy this laptop!!! 

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