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12 Posts

10-30-2020

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Linux not working on IdeaPad S740

2020-10-30, 2:10 AM

I recently purchased an IdeaPad S740 laptop and I have tried multiple Linux distributions and I cannot get Linux to work. I have an HP laptop that boots Linux perfectly fine, but in this case it seems as if Lenovo does not support Linux on this machine. Booting from Linux USB keys doesn't work either. I have disabled secure boot and some settings in the BIOS that conflict with Linux, but have not been able to actually use an installation of Linux or test with a USB key. The only way I can get the screen to show up is to put "nomodeset" on the linux command line by editing the boot configuration with "e" and booting using Ctrl-x. Unfortunately, as soon as it shows the screen, the entire system freezes and does not respond to mouse movement or keyboard commands. In short, the entire system freezes and I have to force restart it. I am therefore unable to use Linux. I have updated to the latest BIOS version 1.04, but that does not appear to have helped at all. I used to use Linux extensively on my old machine but this computer appears to be unable to support Linux. I am very sad and disappointed that Linux is not working on my IdeaPad S740. Has anyone found a way to make this work? :( 

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12 Posts

10-30-2020

United States of America

19 Signins

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  • Posts: 12
  • Registered: ‎10-30-2020
  • Location: United States of America
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Re:Linux not working on IdeaPad S740

2021-11-03, 4:08 AM

Good news: I have recently solved the issue of being unable to install and run Linux because the NVME SSD was invisible to the Linux kernel on the Ideapad S740-15IRH. Lenovo released the BIOS update BKCN24WW (v1.06) for the machine in August and it appears to have fixed this odd problem! In the changelog, I see that the controller was renamed and the MCU microcontroller firmware was updated. This must have done the trick. I was able to install Linux from a bootable USB key natively on this laptop and read/write to the Samsung NVME SSD. Thanks to recent Linux kernel support in 5.13+, audio now works for the audio jack and speakers after fast startup is disabled in Windows. The touchpad also works flawlessly now even though it would cut out before. The only thing that doesn't work even with the newest Linux kernel is the touch functionality of the 15.6" 4K screen. But considering this isn't a convertible or pen-input notebook, that's not a big issue. The fingerprint reader isn't supported either, but that's fairly common on Linux.

I have successfully installed Ubuntu (which wouldn't even boot before) and I am currently dual-booting Windows 11 and Fedora 34. I am highly pleased that Linux works well on this machine after the BIOS was updated by Lenovo. Do note that the controller must be switched from Intel RST to AHCI in the BIOS settings for Linux to recognize the NVME SSD drive (although before the update, it didn't matter if the setting was AHCI, Linux wouldn't recognize the drive). This development is fantastic and I have found a new love for using this machine. I almost abandoned hope, but Lenovo actually fixed this issue.

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1358 Posts

05-14-2020

United States of America

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Re:Linux not working on IdeaPad S740

2020-11-06, 10:58 AM

Hello,

 

My suggestions:

 

A)  Inside Windows run the Lenovo Hardware Diagnostics program.  BIOS is the only driver file of importance to using Linux.

B)  Activate your BIOS settings and select "reset to factory defaults,"  and "Optimize for OS"  these are on the save and exit screen on the Bios on my Ideapad.

C)  Try another Linux distribution, Fedora 33 Workstation, getfedora.org.  Use the GUI from that same download page to burn the image to the USB.

D)  Use a MOUSE and select Windows "SHUTDOWN" command to turn off the PC.  (Only use the shutdown command!)

E)  Insert the bootable USB key.

       THEN turn on the computer!

F)  Access boot order screen and boot from the USB.  (It should boot with Secure Boot enabled!)

G)  for a few days, work from the Live USB image, testing functionality of Wifi, Keyboard, Touchpad, and so forth.  IF everything works select install.  If something does not work, it won't work after installation either.  MAYBE configuration will make it work later, but you might need to learn a lot to get it going.

 

IF this does not work, is your PC issued to you by your employer?  If so, check with the employer provided IT team.

 

Sincerely,

Usedtoberich

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12 Posts

10-30-2020

United States of America

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  • Posts: 12
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  • Message 3 of 5

Re:Linux not working on IdeaPad S740

2020-11-14, 1:15 AM

I tried Fedora and I used a bootable USB key. This time it booted, unlike Ubuntu, and didn't freeze. The only problem is that now my SSD is not detected as an available storage device. I have tried everything in the BIOS settings including switching controller mode from RST to AHCI, but it doesn't appear it matters. Linux cannot detect that my disk is present in the system. I pin this on faulty firmware, because frankly switching the controller mode to AHCI should "just work" and I cannot find any results on why this is happening. I ran hardware diagnostics on Windows and the system board is fine. Linux will not detect my internal hard disk. I also tried the Parted Magic distro and briefly got the Ubuntu installer to work and both failed to detect an internal hard drive. Windows continues to work perfectly fine even though the storage controller seems like it's not working properly. Any ideas? Can I hard-reset the system BIOS? I tried resetting to factory defaults but nothing changed, which struck me as odd because it should.... reset to factory defaults as indicated (tried this multiple times, my saved settings persist and don't reset, which makes me question the integrity of the firmware.) Furthermore, Secure Boot doesn't seem to be working properly because it should deny access to Parted Magic yet it runs unimpeded. I think something is wrong in the UEFI firmware/BIOS because the disk should show up in Linux, but only Windows recognizes the SSD. I guess I'm stuck running only Windows on this machine.

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1358 Posts

05-14-2020

United States of America

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  • Posts: 1358
  • Registered: ‎05-14-2020
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Re:Linux not working on IdeaPad S740

2020-11-15, 20:33 PM

Hello,

 

Regarding BIOS not responding to changes, try a simple explicit change to see if it accepts them.  After toggling the change, carefully select save changes and exit, and then the pop up "are you sure you want to make this change?" confirmation. If it does not change, consult Windows Knowledge Base for solutions.

 

You mentioned INTEL RST technology, and often Intel OPTANE chipset is also installed.  Neither of these technologies are implemented seamlessly into Linux distributions yet. The work around is to explicitly disable them before booting.  Sometimes this is complex because Windows may not boot without explicitly enabling them firs, making dual boot cumbersome.

 

However you do have an option to use Linux upon your machine!  Microsoft Windows is just releasing software technology named "Windows System for Linux"  WSL2.  This link has a link to a magazine description of how to set it up:  https://start.fedoraproject.org/

 

And another solution available from Oracle.com named Virtual Box.  Here is a way to install that:  https://brb.nci.nih.gov/seqtools/installUbuntu.html

 

With this method you leave the Windows installation alone, boot into windows, install the Windows virtual box application software, then after starting Linux inside virtual box application, maximize the window to full screen mode and enjoy using Linux.

 

Good Luck!

Usedtoberich

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12 Posts

10-30-2020

United States of America

19 Signins

75 Page Views

  • Posts: 12
  • Registered: ‎10-30-2020
  • Location: United States of America
  • Views: 75
  • Message 5 of 5

Re:Linux not working on IdeaPad S740

2021-11-03, 4:08 AM

Good news: I have recently solved the issue of being unable to install and run Linux because the NVME SSD was invisible to the Linux kernel on the Ideapad S740-15IRH. Lenovo released the BIOS update BKCN24WW (v1.06) for the machine in August and it appears to have fixed this odd problem! In the changelog, I see that the controller was renamed and the MCU microcontroller firmware was updated. This must have done the trick. I was able to install Linux from a bootable USB key natively on this laptop and read/write to the Samsung NVME SSD. Thanks to recent Linux kernel support in 5.13+, audio now works for the audio jack and speakers after fast startup is disabled in Windows. The touchpad also works flawlessly now even though it would cut out before. The only thing that doesn't work even with the newest Linux kernel is the touch functionality of the 15.6" 4K screen. But considering this isn't a convertible or pen-input notebook, that's not a big issue. The fingerprint reader isn't supported either, but that's fairly common on Linux.

I have successfully installed Ubuntu (which wouldn't even boot before) and I am currently dual-booting Windows 11 and Fedora 34. I am highly pleased that Linux works well on this machine after the BIOS was updated by Lenovo. Do note that the controller must be switched from Intel RST to AHCI in the BIOS settings for Linux to recognize the NVME SSD drive (although before the update, it didn't matter if the setting was AHCI, Linux wouldn't recognize the drive). This development is fantastic and I have found a new love for using this machine. I almost abandoned hope, but Lenovo actually fixed this issue.

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