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267 Posts

02-04-2008

Canada

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Re: T420s Fan noise Issue

2012-01-11, 14:50 PM
Anyone?

1) Is there a BIOS setting to turn the Turbo Boost on/off - if so and turned off, does the fan behave better?
2) Can someone confirm that turning oiff "Lenovo Turbo Boost +" in Power Manager (standard setting) eliminates fan getting stuck at high rotational speed for no reason? Can this feature be turned off completely - out of curiosity.

Thanks

To the previous poster, the "Lenovo Turbo Boost +" "feature" is marketing. I certainly hope that you didn't make your purchasing choice based on that. Nothing wrong with the 2nd gen i5 or i7 stock speed. The "Turbo Boost" is a gimmick, a way to quickly "overclock" a CPU to unconventional speeds ... Marketing... But if THAT "feature" affects how often the fan runs at max speeds, for no good reason then I, for one, would like the option of turning that "feature" OFF.
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105 Posts

06-28-2011

Italia

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Re: T420s Fan noise Issue

2012-01-11, 15:04 PM

wrote:
Anyone?

1) Is there a BIOS setting to turn the Turbo Boost on/off - if so and turned off, does the fan behave better?
2) Can someone confirm that turning oiff "Lenovo Turbo Boost +" in Power Manager (standard setting) eliminates fan getting stuck at high rotational speed for no reason? Can this feature be turned off completely - out of curiosity.



As I understand the Lenovo Turbo boost + simply spins your fan to its max speed, that is 4600 RPM, for increasing the duration of the Turbo mode (where the Turbo mode is the one of the CPU).

 

That is:

Intel Turbo boost = higher core speed for a certain duration;

Lenovo Turbo boost + = max fan speed for increasing the duration of Intel Turbo boost.

 

Hence, disabling the Lenovo Turbo boost + setting in the power manager reduces the fan speed. However, the setting is disabled as per default, which means that it is not the culprit here. Furthermore, it increases the FAN speed up to 4600 RPM, while mine is stuck at 4000.

 

I have no clue if it is possible to disable Intel Turbo boost, and it would be very sad it that is the cause of the fan speed, since it is a very nice feature of more expensive newer Intel CPUs.

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267 Posts

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Re: T420s Fan noise Issue

2012-01-11, 15:15 PM
Thanks for the reply alexcriss... Explanation is very much appreciated

Indeed the feature is nice, but just trying to narrow down possibilities relating to this fan behaviour.
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267 Posts

02-04-2008

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Re: T420s Fan noise Issue

2012-01-11, 17:45 PM

BTW, read that @JameZ no longer represents Lenovo.

 

There doesn't seem to be anyone here from Lenovo anymore that is willing to deal with this.

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163 Posts

07-02-2011

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Re: T420s Fan noise Issue

2012-01-12, 3:36 AM

alexcriss, icantux, namelessrabbit: The stuck-at-4000RPM problem is not related to Turbo Boost. Users having this problem (like me) are still having it when Turbo Boost is turned off. You can turn off Turbo Boost by changing System Performance from "Turbo" to "Balanced" in the Lenovo Power Manager.

 

When Turbo Boost is turned on, it would be normal and understandable to see high fan speeds. This is because the CPU generates so much more heat. When the fan gets stuck at 4000RPM, the CPU temperature drops dramatically (like to around 33C) but the fan never slows down until the system sleeps or powers down.

 

antsh: It would be extremely interesting if the fan problem is correlated is correlated with that event log error. Maybe we should do some data logging to find the point where the fan gets permanently stuck at 4000RPM, and check the timing of these event log messages.

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163 Posts

07-02-2011

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Re: T420s Fan noise Issue

2012-01-12, 3:45 AM
alexcress: Based on my own observations and research, I'll give you my understanding of the problem.
My fan gets permanently stuck at 4000RPM even when Lenovo's default (factory) image of Windows is installed. The fan spins up and down normally for a while (sometimes even for 1-2 days), then suddenly gets stuck at 4000RPM and stays there forever. There is a period of normal operation before the fan gets stuck. This suggests to me that there's a bug in the EC code. This is even happening in colder room temperatures (19C).
You are correct that the fan is directly regulated by the EC, unless Lenovo Turbo Boost + is turned on. You can verify this by reading the EC fan parameter with TPFanControl.
Your questions:
1. No, Windows does not directly regulate fan behavior, unless Turbo Boost + is being used
1a. The EC uses the temperature sensors, and possibly other parameters (such as CPU, battery, or hardware power states) to regulate the fan. The exact algorithm is probably a trade secret and Lenovo won't tell us. Windows shouldn't directly change any of the EC's parameters -- Windows doesn't even know about the EC unless Power Manager is installed, and you've already observed that the fan regulates when Power Manager is removed.
2. If the CPU is stuck at 4000RPM at the BIOS main screen, it's possible that the BIOS hasn't initialized the EC yet, or the CPU power management is disabled in the BIOS setup screen and higher fan speeds are required for the heat production.
3. If your CPU is stuck at 4000RPM when using Linux, it's possible that Linux is consuming more power (leaving the CPU Turbo mode on all the time or something.)

wrote:

Hi everybody: Yesterday evening I re-installed Windows on my laptop before sending it to tech-support today. With much surprise, it appears that my fan works as it should on Windows and not on Linux (this wasn't the case some time ago, I think before 1.30).

 

I only had time for a quick test, since i had to send it today.

 

What I'd noticed is:

- Fan spins down on Windows no matter if I have the Lenovo Power Manger installed or not

- Fan does not spin down while the laptop sits at the BIOS (that is, open the laptop, press F1, leave the BIOS idle and watch the fan ramps up)

- Fan does not spin down using Linux

 

I assume that the fan is directly regulated by the EC, and that Windows only touches power settings such as CPU speed, GPU usage, etc. In such a case it might be possible that neither the BIOS or Linux are touching some settings that Windows is changing (it might very well be Turbo Boost).

 

, could you please pass some questions to the engineering group? Please please please pass them along the entire message :smileyhappy:. Here they are:

 

1) Does Windows directly regulates the fan behaviour (where by directly I mean that Windows tells the EC to set a particular speed), or the speed is entirely decided by the EC?

1-a) In the latter case, which parameters are used for deciding a particular speed? It might be that Windows is changing one of them and hence the EC does the right thing (tm). Knowing which parameters count and exactly how they count may help getting a nice behaviour under different OSs.

2) Could you please ask to the engineering group if they see the fan stuck at 4000 RPM when leaving the laptop at the BIOS main screen? This is the case for me.

3) Could you please ask to the engineering group if they see the fan stuck at 4000 RPM when using Linux? For such a test they simply need to download a live CD of any distribution and stick it into the optical disk. It would be very appreciated!

4) Any hints on what setting, if it is a setting, might impact the fan behaviour such that it stays fixed at 4000 RPM? A list of highly likely candidates would be wonderful!

5) Is it possible for them to debug my system using a "remote desktop" application, since I am not U.S. based? I'll do whatever possible to help fixing this issue.

 

Furthermore, is somebody using Windows still seeing his fan permanently stuck at 4000 RPM, and by permanently I mean that it doesn't spin down ever? I am wondering if only us Linux users are experiencing it lately.

Conversely, is there any Linux user who has access to Windows for checking if the fan works better using Microsoft's OS?

 

Cheers,

Ale


 

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163 Posts

07-02-2011

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Re: T420s Fan noise Issue

2012-01-12, 4:02 AM

alexcriss: I just tried the BIOS setup with my T420s. The fan does spin at 4000RPM in the BIOS setup, but it's blowing hot air. This means that the CPU runs hot during BIOS setup, and it's completely normal for the fan to spin at 4000RPM. When I first enter the BIOS setup, I actually hear the fan running slowly at first and then speeding up. So, the EC is using a standard fan control algorithm even during BIOS setup.

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105 Posts

06-28-2011

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Re: T420s Fan noise Issue

2012-01-12, 9:18 AM

wrote:

alexcriss: I just tried the BIOS setup with my T420s. The fan does spin at 4000RPM in the BIOS setup, but it's blowing hot air. This means that the CPU runs hot during BIOS setup, and it's completely normal for the fan to spin at 4000RPM. When I first enter the BIOS setup, I actually hear the fan running slowly at first and then speeding up. So, the EC is using a standard fan control algorithm even during BIOS setup.


Thanks for your helpful reply, it makes sense much sense. I'll have to check it when I get my laptop back. What I am sure is that the fan stays on 4000 RPM on Linux even with low temperatures (and cold air coming out of it).

 

At this point I think that the whole issue is a mixture of a bugged EC and some power parameters that Windows regulates and Linux doesn't. To drill down which ones it would be nice to hear what the EC is monitoring for setting the fan speed. If the algorithm is secret (and I don't understand why, it is a fan monitoring algorithm, not a nuclear power plant control system!) can we know at least what are the parameters with higher impacts?

 

Turbo boost seemed like a good candidate, but I don't think that Windows disables it, and since my fan was working without Lenovo's software, their power manager's options should be excluded (I'll be sure of this when I get my laptop back from the repair center). Furthermore, the CPU frequency is correctly scaled down using Linux, as checked with various softwares.

 

from Lenovo: any hints? parameters to check? What about trying Linux or staying at the BIOS?

 

Besides: JameZ don't leave us, your help was really appreciated and you'll be missed.

 

, : would you care trying a Linux live cd for checking the fan speed? It is just a matter of downloading the latest Ubuntu or Fedora images (those are the ones coming to my mind as working out of the box solutions), burning one and stiking the cd into the optical drive before booting. When you log in you can run "sensors" in a terminal for checking the fan speed (and, of course, you might just hear the fan spinning if that is the case).

 

Ale

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15 Posts

10-26-2011

CA

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T420s Fan noise Issue

2012-01-12, 16:43 PM

There is a new version of powermanager too..  3.65

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56 Posts

06-08-2011

USA

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Re: T420s Fan noise Issue

2012-01-14, 19:56 PM

Please fix this problem. Since I applied the lenovo software updates a month after buying my computer in June the CPU has run significantly hotter and the fan almost always stays on 4000 rpm except when idle. Any CPU activity, and I mean ANY (like clicking on the windows button), boosts the fan up to 4000 rpm. This issue must be connected to either the bios, power manager, or nvidia drivers.  You need to fix this (this laptop was not cheap)!

 

I wonder, if anyone else had the same experience with their T420s running very quietely when they first got it before installing new bios/ power mamager? If so, would anyone try to revert disc image and all drivers back to the original state and see if the fan issue is resolved? Perhaps that way we can isolate the exact driver that is causing this issue.

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