Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (Gen 6)
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon, 6th generation is an ultrabook introduced in early 2018. It comes in several variants(
20KG*) and features a 14" screen, 8th-gen Intel Core processors and integrated Intel UHD 620 graphics.
To ensure you have this version, install the package and run:
# sudo dmidecode -s system-version ThinkPad X1 Carbon 6th
|Intel graphics||Yes||i915, (intel_agp)|
|Native Ethernet with included dongle||Yes||?|
|Mobile broadband Fibocom||No¹||?|
|Mobile broadband Sierra EM7455||Yes||cdc_mbim, cdc_wcm, cdc_ncm|
|Touchpad||Yes||psmouse, rmi_smbus, i2c_i801|
|TrackPoint||Yes||psmouse, rmi_smbus, i2c_i801|
|microSD card reader||Yes||scsi_mod|
|Thunderbolt 3 eGPU||Yes⁵||nvidia|
- 1 BIOS
- 2 Suspend issues
- 3 Power management/Throttling issues
- 4 Audio crackling
- 5 Built-in speakers low volume workaround
- 6 Wireless WAN / LTE
- 7 Configuration
- 8 Intel Graphics UHD 620 issues
- 9 TrackPoint and Touchpad issues
- 10 Thunderbolt dock
- 11 Full-disk encryption
- 12 Tools
- 13 References
- 14 Additional resources
The most convenient way to install Arch Linux is by disabling "Secure Boot"
Security -> Secure Boot - Set to "Disabled". However it is possible to self-sign your kernel and boot with it enabled. For further information have a look at the Secure Boot article.
Automatic (Linux Vendor Firmware Service)
In August of 2018 Lenovo has joined the Linux Vendor Firmware Service(LVFS) project, which enables firmware updates from within the OS. BIOS updates (and possibly other firmware such as the Thunderbolt controller) can be queried for and installed through fwupd.
Lenovo provides a cabinet file that can be directly installed with fwupdmgr.
Take the most recent
.cab file from the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (Gen 6) driver website.
- Make sure the AC adapter is firmly connected to the target computer.
- Launch Terminal.
- Move to the directory where the cabinet file was placed.
fwupdmgr install xxxxxxxx.cabto schedule firmware update.
- Restart the system.
- The computer will be restarted and the UEFI BIOS will be updated.
Manual (El Torito)
BIOS update 1.38 was released on 2019-05-13 (previous version was 1.37). Obtain AUR and run
geteltorito.pl -o bios-update.img n23ur12w.iso on the downloaded ISO file to create a valid El Torito image file, then flash this file on a USB drive via
dd like you would flash Arch installation media. For further information see flashing BIOS from Linux.
The ThinkPad X1 Carbon supports setting a custom splash image at the earliest boot stage (instead of the red "Lenovo" logo), more information can be found in the
README.TXT located in the
FLASH folder of the update image.
Since BIOS version 1.30, the X1 Carbon supports S3 mode when enabled in the BIOS menu (choose "Linux" sleep mode instead of the default "Windows 10"). See #Automatic (Linux Vendor Firmware Service) for instructions to update and verify your BIOS version.
To enable S3 support, make sure you have at least BIOS version 1.30 installed. Then, go into the BIOS configuration, and
Config -> Power -> Sleep State - Set to "Linux". This should make S3 available. To verify, after making the changes in the BIOS configuration, boot into Linux, and run the
dmesg command again to make sure that S3 is now available.
To check whether S3 is recognized and usable by Linux, run:
dmesg | grep -i "acpi: (supports"
and check for
S3 in the list.
Disabling the memory card reader
You might also need to disable the Realtek memory card reader (which appears to use a constant 2-3 W) either via the BIOS or via
echo "2-3" | sudo tee /sys/bus/usb/drivers/usb/unbind
Config -> Thunderbolt BIOS Assist Mode - Set to "Enabled". When disabled, on Linux, power usage appears to be significantly higher because of a substantial number of CPU wakeups during s2idle.
Power management/Throttling issues
Due to wrong configured power management registers the CPU may consume a lot less power than under windows and the thermal throttling occurs at 80°C (97°C when using Windows, see T480s throttling bug).
There is a post in the official Lenovo forum to inform Lenovo about this issue.
An easy package has been written to address the problem until (or if) Lenovo ever solves it.
InstallAUR, then run:
sudo systemctl enable --now lenovo_fix.service
The script also supports more advance thermal/performance features including CPU undervolting. See the lenovo-throttling-fix repository
README.md for details.
When charging you may hear crackling noise while listening to audio. The work around for this issue is to disable one of the PINs:
sudo hda-verb /dev/snd/hwC0D0 0x1d SET_PIN_WIDGET_CONTROL 0x0
There is also a kernel patch for this issue, which can be found here.
Built-in speakers low volume workaround
If your ThinkPad X1 Carbon (Gen 6) built-in speakers are limited to a maximum of about 20% volume even though the volume is set at 100%, try adding the following parameter to the snd_hda_intel module by editing /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base.conf and adding the following line:
options snd-hda-intel model=nofixup
Wireless WAN / LTE
ThinkPad X1 Carbon (Gen 6) is exclusively shipped with a Fibocom L850-GL LTE modem, which is not supported under Linux and Lenovo doesn't seem to care about it.
It is normally impossible to swap the LTE modem for a supported one due to BIOS-level restrictions ("whitelists" of allowed M.2 expansion cards) implemented in all modern Lenovo laptops. However, a method has been found to configure any Sierra Wireless EM73xx/EM74xx modem to "evade" the whitelist checks, so these modems can be used normally.
Take a look at ThinkPad mobile internet: Getting around BIOS-level whitelist restrictions for instructions.
Install NetworkManager and to make your life easier founding the correct APN for your SIM card.
Keyboard Fn Shortcuts
- Fn+4 sends XF86Sleep (puts computer to sleep by default)
- Fn+S sends Alt_L+Sys_Req
- Fn+P sends Pause
- Fn+B sends Control_L+Break
- Fn+K sends Scroll_Lock
- Fn+Space toggles the keyboard backlight
- Fn by itself sends XF86WakeUp (wakes computer from sleep by default)
Some special buttons are not supported by X server due to keycode number limit.
||Not recognized in Wayland|
||Recognized correctly on Wayland|
You can remap unsupported keys so that they can be detected and mapped in X using udev hwdb:
prog2 map to
/usr/include/linux/input-event-codes.h. You can use any key code with a defined value less than 255. The keycode hwdb expects is the lowercased text following
KEY_ in the above input event codes header file. eg:
KEY_COFFEE would be
evdev:name:ThinkPad Extra Buttons:dmi:bvn*:bvr*:bd*:svnLENOVO*:pn* KEYBOARD_KEY_49=prog1 KEYBOARD_KEY_45=prog2
To make the changes take effect:
# udevadm hwdb --update # udevadm trigger --sysname-match="event*"
Bind special keys
It should be noted that
Fn+F11 which is
Fn+F12 which is
KEY_FAVORITES could be bound respectively with
XF86Launch2, as followed :
# bindsym XF86Launch1 [your app] # bindsym XF86Launch2 [your app]
Disabling red LED Thinkpad logo
If you want to shut down Big Brother, (the red led on the "i" letter located on the cover of your x1c6 thinkpad logo) follow these steps :
- Firstly, add the kernel parameter : ec_sys.write_support=1 (if you are using UEFI boot as I do, you can add this parameter in /boot/efi/loader/entries/arch.conf in "options")
- Then, you can disable directly the LED with this command :
# echo -n -e "\x0a" | sudo dd of="/sys/kernel/debug/ec/ec0/io" bs=1 seek=12 count=1 conv=notrunc 2> /dev/null
You can also turn the LED off at startup with Systemd :
- Create a sh script (/root/disable_led.sh for instance) and put this :
#!/bin/bash echo -n -e "\x0a" | dd of="/sys/kernel/debug/ec/ec0/io" bs=1 seek=12 count=1 conv=notrunc 2> /dev/null
- Create a service under /etc/systemd/system/ called led.service, and insert the following:
Description=Disabling thinkpad led [Service] ExecStart=/root/disable_led.sh [Install] WantedBy=multi-user.target
- Then start and enable this service
# systemctl start led.service # systemctl enable led.service
Say goodbye to Big Brother !
HDR Display Color Calibration
For models with the 1440p HDR display, the default color profile can be corrected under Gnome using an ICC calibration provided by notebookcheck.net's review.
wget https://www.notebookcheck.net/uploads/tx_nbc2/B140QAN02_0.icm colormgr import-profile B140QAN02_0.icm
This will import the ICC profile, and next you'll need to activate it for your display. Find your display's object path:
colormgr get-devices | sed -rn 's/Object Path:\s*(.*eDP1.*)/\1/p'
And your new color profile object path:
colormgr get-profiles | grep -4 -i B140QAN02
And finally activate the profile and set it as the default for this display:
colormgr device-add-profile <device object id> <profile object id> colormgr device-make-profile-default <device object id> <profile object id>
You can verify the profile is active by running
Intel Graphics UHD 620 issues
- Enable GuC/HuC firmware loading suggests to load GPU firmware with warning. However, on Wayland for Carbon X1 gen 6 it cause GPU hang problem. Issues can be reflected as: a) crashing GPU process of Chrome / Chromium / Electron apps and subsequent host freezing; b) crashing of Gnome / Wayland with possibility to reboot via second virtual terminal; c) just host freezing. In dmesg the following can be observed:
kernel: [drm] GPU HANG: ecode 9:0:0x85dffffd, in chrome , reason: hang on rcs0, action: reset kernel: [drm] GPU hangs can indicate a bug anywhere in the entire gfx stack, including userspace. kernel: [drm] Please file a _new_ bug report on bugs.freedesktop.org against DRI -> DRM/Intel kernel: [drm] drm/i915 developers can then reassign to the right component if it's not a kernel issue. kernel: [drm] The gpu crash dump is required to analyze gpu hangs, so please always attach it. kernel: [drm] GPU crash dump saved to /sys/class/drm/card0/error kernel: i915 0000:00:02.0: Resetting rcs0 for hang on rcs0
Note that, first line changes depending on the source of crashing application, but the result is the same, so issue is with GPU / firmware. Basically don't enable GuC / HuC firmware loading, at least if on Wayland. There are a number of similar issues reported including #108717.
modesettingdriver causes tearing in some situations. You can install the
xf86-video-inteldriver instead and enable the
"TearFree"option in your configuration file:
Section "Device" Identifier "Intel Graphics" Driver "intel" Option "TearFree" "true" EndSection
GNOME Wayland not available
If you haven't added the i915 to the MODULES list in /etc/mkinitcpio.conf (e.g. following the full disk encryption requirements below), you may be unable to run Wayland on kernel 4.20 (the gnome on Wayland option might not be present on GDM). Adding i915 to the MODULES list in /etc/mkinitcpio.conf and regenerating the ramdisk solves this issue.
TrackPoint and Touchpad issues
[...] root=/dev/sda1 rw psmouse.synaptics_intertouch=1 [...]
or by editing
options psmouse synaptics_intertouch=1
Reconnecting a dead trackpad can be done via
echo -n "none" | sudo tee /sys/bus/serio/devices/serio1/drvctl echo -n "reconnect" | sudo tee /sys/bus/serio/devices/serio1/drvctl
Plugable USB-C Mini Docking Station with 85W Power Delivery UD-CAM
If you are using an external plugable UD-CAM thunderbolt dock connected to the laptop through its USB-C thunderbolt port, you might experience random disconnections (external monitor, bluetooth and ethernet) with this kind of error in dmesg :
pcieport 0000:05:00.0: BAR 13: no space for [io size 0x3000]
It should be noted that UD-CAM dock.is not working with this
To avoid random disconnection, proceed as followed by editing the bios and TLP
You should then look at your bios settings :
- Wake by thunderbolt : enable
- Security level : no security
- Pre-boot ACL option : enable
TLP blacklisting devices from USB autosuspend
If you are using TLP you have to edit /etc/default/tlp and make sure that you exclude all dock devices from USB autosuspend as followed :
USB_BLACKLIST="0000:1111 2222:3333 4444:5555"
Then reboot and your dock should work correctly.
LUKS: Ramdisk module
With LUKS for root, i915 needs to be loaded in ramdisk in order to access the password prompt.
Add i915 to MODULES list in
/etc/mkinitcpio.conf and regenerate the ramdisk.
OPAL: Hardware based full-disk encryption
See Self-Encrypting Drives (Confirmed working)
s-tui ( AUR): an aesthetically pleasing and useful curses-style interface that shows graphs of CPU frequency, utilization, temperature, and power consumption. It also has a built in stress tester.
intel_gpu_top ( ): gives you some top-like info for the integrated GPU. This can be quite useful in diagnosing GPU acceleration issues.
powertop ( ): provides detailed information about CPU power consumption and recommendations on how to improve it.
tlp-stat ( ): a much simpler alternative to remembering which
cat /sys/devices/system/* to run in many cases. It can give very detailed, structured information about components like the battery, processor, graphics card, etc.
- T480s throttling bug, affects X1C6 as well
- Lenovo forums: T480s low cTDP and trip temperature in Linux
- Thread: TrackPoint/Touchpad issues, 20KG model
- StackExchange: Success with enabling RMI4 config flags for Touchpad and TrackPoint
- Kernel patch - Input: elantech - add support for SMBus devices
- Kernel patch - Input: synaptics - add Lenovo 80 series ids to SMBus
- Early KMS start: Adding i915 to ramdisk
- ThinkWiki X1 Carbon 6th Gen page
- Benjamin Tissoires, kernel maintainer of peripherals, has explained how input bugs get fixed in his talk Tools to debug a broken input device (Slides), especially interesting are slides 16 onward.
- Dell XPS 13 9370 quirks: Some pointers on getting Watt usage down to ~2W, Intel video powersaving features might be interesting, see also the Intel graphics page for interesting power-saving options.
- Dell XPS 13 (9360): Shares some hardware with the X1C6
- Intel Blog: Best practice to debug Linux* suspend/hibernate issues, including the pm-graph tool to analyze power usage during suspend
- A comprehensive example Arch install for the X1C6