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86 Posts

09-08-2016

United States of America

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Re: Yoga 900-13ISK2 - BIOS update for setting RAID mode for missing hard drive on linux install

2016-09-21, 18:59 PM

I think that Lenovo's official reply is insufficient and carefully constructed.

 

They talk about how much they love to support Linux and then say that they don't support Linux on many of their own laptops.

 

Actions speak louder than words, and there's no technical reason other than the BIOS RAID mode lock why the Yoga 900 ISK2 and other affected systems wouldn't be great Linux machines.

 

I also think that locking down the thread and editing peoples comments and then blaming forum posters for being "disruptive" was uncalled for, and they're obviously trying to turn this around and make it seem like I am overreacting or somehow I'm at fault for what they did.

 

And unfortunately, some of the media reports have taken up this narrative instead of looking into why Lenovo would do such things to their computers. There is no REAL issue with Linux not supporting these laptops other than the one Lenovo created. They need to make a BIOS patch that users can install, like other Ultrabook PC makers did, not more excuses.

 

But if you want to take Lenovo's word for it, then who am I to argue with the company that said Superfish wasn't a security problem. Who do they have doing their PR? The Iraqi Information Minister?

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58 Posts

06-30-2012

United States of America

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Re: Yoga 900-13ISK2 - BIOS update for setting RAID mode for missing hard drive on linux install

2016-09-21, 19:35 PM

Well the thing that irks me is that they'll get a PR damage control press release issued in under 24 hours, but they won't actually fix the actual problem and release the BIOS update we all need to be able to use our machines.

I for one, am happy to have the support of my peers on here.

The argument "oh, this is the wrong venue for this, you're not talking to Lenovo, you're talking to your peers" has been mis-applied time and time again by Lenovo employees that frequent this form.

Clearly, we have Lenovo's ears.

I look here, and I don't see "disruptive people;" I see people who are reasonably outraged that they bought multi-thousand dollar paperweights that are effectively DOA.

Their spin that it is "our super advanced Intel RAID chipset" really plays in their favor, given that their BIOS uses a single goto statement to intentionally block access to the ability to set this chipset into the AHCI compatible mode that the hardware so readily supports, as evidenced by the REing work and the fact that other OSes detect the drive after the AHCI fix using the custom-flashed BIOS.

So, why are they reluctant to just issue their band-aid patch to the BIOS -- after all, it's really the path of least resistance here?

Yes, there has been some deflection of blame here. The argument that every single OS except Windows 10 is at fault for not supporting this CRAZY new super advanced hardware doesn't make much sense.

"Linux (and all other operating systems) don't support X on Z because of Y" doesn't really apply when "Z modified Y in a way that does not allow support for X."

To state it more plainly, this "CRAZY new super advanced hardware" has a trivial backwards compatible mode that works with everything just fine, but it is blocked by Lenovo's BIOS.

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86 Posts

09-08-2016

United States of America

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Re: Yoga 900-13ISK2 - BIOS update for setting RAID mode for missing hard drive on linux install

2016-09-21, 19:55 PM

Do you have your receipt?

 

Make sure you Reset the PC. Best Buy has been known to do things like sell open box Apple TV units that are still signed into someones account. Lol

 

I'm not suggesting that you do any course of action though.

 

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86 Posts

09-08-2016

United States of America

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Re: Yoga 900-13ISK2 - BIOS update for setting RAID mode for missing hard drive on linux install

2016-09-21, 20:00 PM

Relax.  Theyre explaining. And the old saying in politics is if you're explaining, it means you're losing.

 

Honestly, just releasing a patch for the  BIOS with an apology would probably help them more than a canned press release about how abusing RAID mode which risks data loss makes your SSD faster. No benchmarks I've seen of nvme SSD has shown them to be significantly faster if the BIOS is set to RAID.

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2 Posts

09-21-2016

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Re: Yoga 900-13ISK2 - BIOS update for setting RAID mode for missing hard drive on linux install

2016-09-21, 20:05 PM

Can you do me a favor and dump all the PCI registers of the raid controller (before patch) and ahci controller (after patch) with lspci, and send them to me? My email is my username at Gmail.  Thanks. 

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58 Posts

06-30-2012

United States of America

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Re: Yoga 900-13ISK2 - BIOS update for setting RAID mode for missing hard drive on linux install

2016-09-21, 20:06 PM

Wait, does RAID (single-drive RAID) actually save power over AHCI ? If so, how?

I know that the performance benchmarks are more or less the same, but this is the first time I've heard anyone say anything for or against the power saving aspect.

Does anyone have any actual data backing this up?

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86 Posts

09-08-2016

United States of America

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Re: Yoga 900-13ISK2 - BIOS update for setting RAID mode for missing hard drive on linux install

2016-09-21, 20:20 PM

According to Matthew Garrett, putting it in RAID forces it to bypass the Windows driver which has horrible power management functionality and load Intel's driver instead. So if that's the case, Lenovo is hacking around a problem with Windows power management. He blames Intel and says that they won't even tell Microsoft how power management works. I find that hard to believe considering that most Intel hardware is extensively documented. They even have a dedicated open source team writing Linux graphics drivers that don't make you install flakey proprietary crap like some graphics card companies. We all know the one I speak of, but I don't want to say the name and risk provoking moderators.

 

Anyway, I doubt that Microsoft couldn't get the documents for power management from Intel. They're in a position to demand anything they want.

 

So I respectfully disagree with Mr. Garrett about this being a power management issue, primarily. If people want to sacrifice battery life, that's their business, if in fact that is an issue with Linux. I welcome people who can run Linux to compare the runtime on a battery charge in Linux to the runtime on Windows. I would be very interested in those numbers so we're dealing with a known fact. But I'd like to run Linux even if I lose a few minutes from my ten hour charge. It would not affect Windows users because they would still default to RAID.

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22 Posts

06-06-2016

Canada

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Re: Yoga 900-13ISK2 - BIOS update for setting RAID mode for missing hard drive on linux install

2016-09-21, 20:23 PM

Wow! This forum is smoking HOT!!!

I'm very happy owners are speaking out and voicing their opinions

and that my outrage is not isolated!

And as for Lenovo "moderating" i.e. (supressing) honest dissent,

I find that absolutely disgusting!

Sorry Lenovo, YOU LOST A CUSTOMER!

 

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4 Posts

09-09-2016

United States of America

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Re: Yoga 900-13ISK2 - BIOS update for setting RAID mode for missing hard drive on linux install

2016-09-21, 20:25 PM

The page referenced above (written by a FSF director and Linux kernel hacker who does power management), so readers can form their own opinions: https://mjg59.dreamwidth.org/44694.html

 

Note: I think it would be good to keep discussion here to potential solutions.  REing the BIOS was a fun project though fruitless, and I am moving on to a different brand, selling what will be my last Lenovo, and redirecting my emotional response to other outlets.  However, some folks are not in a position to part with these systems, and this thread has a lot of useful information for them regarding "what" and "how" that is becoming harder to find amidst the more speculative discussion of "why."

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86 Posts

09-08-2016

United States of America

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Re: Yoga 900-13ISK2 - BIOS update for setting RAID mode for missing hard drive on linux install

2016-09-21, 20:37 PM

The FSF hasn't been as careful in selecting their board members as they should have been on several occasions, including when they let Miguel de Icaza in, who ran a company trying to get Microsoft technologies into Linux in ways that are legally dangerous to use. A covenant not to sue is not a patent license. Anyway, Xamarin is now owned by Microsoft, and so look where that went.

 

I obviously am concerned about the FSFs decisions sometimes, but they are free to appoint whoever they want, including Microsoft boosters.

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