Dell Latitude E6420

From ArchWiki

This article or section is a candidate for merging with Laptop/Dell#Latitude.

Notes: Nothing relevant to readers in 2024 that is not already in the table. (Discuss in Talk:Dell Latitude E6420)

This article or section does not follow the Laptop page guidelines.

Reason: Needs a hardware table, accessibility, firmware and function keys section. (Discuss in Talk:Dell Latitude E6420)

This article or section is out of date.

Reason: This page is ancient. (Discuss in Talk:Dell Latitude E6420)

The Dell Latitude E6420.

This article will tell you how to get the basic components of the laptop running with Arch.


Very stable seems to work very well.

Some devices are optional, although the motherboard seems to be standard and supports all of them.


  • Hibernate / Resume (lid and Fn + F1 works)
  • Volume keys (hardware keys)
  • Brightness keys (Fn + up/down arrows)
  • WiFi card and switch
  • HDMI/VGA out
  • USB
  • Ethernet
  • Audio
  • Optical Drive


  • Fingerprint reader (BCM5880)
  • NFC (BCM5880, optional)


All devices were detected and should work, but were not actually tested.

  • Bluetooth (optional)
  • HDMI audio
  • SD/MMC Card reader (PCIe device)
  • RFID (BCM5880, optional)
  • SmartCard reader (BCM5880)
  • Modem (optional)
  • Dock
  • Nvidia Optimus


Nvidia NVS 4200M + Intel HD 3000

Disable Nvidia Optimus in the BIOS and install the nvidia-390xx-dkmsAUR package.

It seems like it only supports a maximum of two monitors (including the internal one) at the same time with the built in ports (dock untested), and has a weirdly low maximum pixel clock (1280x1024 at 60Hz on VGA or HDMI will not work for me).

Hardware Modification

I have experimented with modifying the hardware a bit, do not try unless you know what you are doing and have a decent reason to.

What can be removed

You can remove most devices and the BIOS and OS will not complain. These are what I have tested, excluding stuff like the optical drive or WiFi card.

  • Trackpad
  • PointStick (I replaced it with an IBM Trackpoint)
  • Finger print reader
  • Microphone/webcam module (the connector has USB low voltage + audio)
  • SmartCard reader
  • Any of the optional devices (Bluetooth connector probably has USB, I think the modem is serial)

Other notes

The hard drive and optical drive SATA connectors are not hot-pluggable, but the eSATA one is (eSATA should always be). You can (but are not recommended to) take out the optical drive while on, but it will not show up until you restart.

The BIOS supports Intel RAID if you have more than one hard drive plugged in, but md is recommended.

The optical drive bay has some extra connectors and pins for a battery and maybe something else, although I would not be surprised if they were never used.