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IrDA can be used to communicate using Infrared to other IrDA compliant devices, such as other Notebooks, PDAs and mobile phones.

All IBM ThinkPads manufactured in the last years have integrated IrDA that can be used in one of two modes, SIR or FIR.

  • SIR is limited to serial datarates up to 115.2Kb/s
  • FIR is the preferred mode of IrDA operation and operates at a bandwidth of 4 Mbps

Some very old ThinkPads only support SIR mode, or might not have IrDA support at all.

A newer VFIR standard exists, which supports speeds upto 16Mbps. However for the moment no ThinkPads support this.

Linux support

See How to make use of IrDA.

External Sources

ThinkPad Models featuring this Technology

IrDA 1.0 (SIR - 115Kbps)

IrDA 1.1 (FIR - 4Mbps)