Installing Fedora 8 on a ThinkPad T60

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This is a quick overview of how I installed Fedora 8 on my ThinkPad T60. I mostly just copy and pasted what TomCallaway wrote in his installation guide of Fedora 7 so a really really big Thanks to him.

What Works?

  • Fedora
  • Most of the function keys, except the ones mentioned below
  • The fingerprint reader.
  • Video, 2D and 3D.
  • Brightness, Volume and Mute with OSD (On-Screen Display).
  • ThinkLight, TrackPoint II and the touchpad.
  • Bluetooth
  • Infrared
  • Suspend

What might not work (Haven't tested personally)

  • Modem
  • Hibernate

Installing Fedora

This is a single system install. I just put in the DVD told the installation to erase everything and it did! Went off without a hitch.

Wireless LAN

This took me forever to figure out. Spent a long time searching the internet but I did eventually figure out how to get the network manager to work with the Intel 3945 chipset. Also the little light doesn't work sorry =(

Copied from Enable Network Manager Fedora[1]

1. Set the main service to automatically start on boot:

$ su -c '/sbin/chkconfig --level 345 NetworkManager on'

2.Set the dispatcher service to automatically start on boot:

$ su -c '/sbin/chkconfig --level 345 NetworkManagerDispatcher on'

3. Start the services:

$ su -c '/sbin/service NetworkManager start ; /sbin/service NetworkManagerDispatcher start'


Bluetooth works out of the box, but Gnome GUI only provides limited functionality (like Obex file transfers). To configure bluetooth serial ports (those are used to connect to internet via Your bluetooth enabled mobile phone, to use bluetooth GPS devices etc), You have to manually tweak /etc/bluetooth/rfcomm.conf file.

At first run:

$ hcitool scan

The output should be something like

Scanning ...
        00:0A:D9:ED:89:4E       Anttix P900

Note the MAC address of Your phone, then run:

$ sdptool browse MAC_ADDRESS_OF_YOUR_PHONE

Find modem channel by looking for an entry like this:

Service Name: Dial-up Networking
Service Description: Dial-up Networking
Service Provider: Sony Ericsson
Service RecHandle: 0x10001
Service Class ID List:
  "Dialup Networking" (0x1103)
Protocol Descriptor List:
  "L2CAP" (0x0100)
  "RFCOMM" (0x0003)
    Channel: 7
Language Base Attr List:
  code_ISO639: 0x656e
  encoding:    0x6a
  base_offset: 0x100
Profile Descriptor List:
  "Dialup Networking" (0x1103)
    Version: 0x0100

Now edit /etc/bluetooth/rfcomm.conf. Uncomment the lines for rfcomm0 and replace MAC and channel numbers with the ones from Your phone. Also make sure to turn on automatic binding on startup. The final config will look like this:

rfcomm0 {
        # Automatically bind the device at startup
        bind yes;

        # Bluetooth address of the device
        device 00:0A:D9:ED:89:4E;

        # RFCOMM channel for the connection
        channel 7;

        # Description of the connection
        comment "My GSM Dialup Networking";

Restart bluetooth subsystem:

# service bluetooth restart

Now run network configuration tool, add a new modem to device /dev/rfcomm0 and configure an internet connection as usual. The phone number depends on Your phone make, but most of the time it's *99#. You might also need to add additional modem initialization string AT+cgdcont=1,"IP","internet",,0,0 to configure Your GPRS service name.

Make sure that Gnome bluetooth applet is running. If not, run it by typing bluetooth-applet.

Activate the connection. You should be prompted for PIN by both: the phone and the applet. Enter the same number on both sides to pair the connection.


T60 has an NSC FIR chip. The driver needs to know a Dongle ID so it must be manually configured.

Edit /etc/modprobe.conf, add the following two lines:

alias irda0 nsc-ircc
options nsc-ircc dongle_id=0x09

Edit /etc/sysconfig/irda:


Start IRDA

# service irda start

If You want IRDA to be enabled during system boot, turn it on like this:

# chkconfig irda on

Getting the ThinkVantage Buttons to work

Fedora does not recognize all the ThinkVantage buttons correctly by default. This can be fixed quite easily. Just edit /etc/X11/Xmodmap.

Then paste the following in the file:

keycode 234 = XF86Back
keycode 233 = XF86Forward
keycode 159 = XF86Start
keycode 162 = XF86AudioPlay
keycode 164 = XF86AudioStop
keycode 153 = XF86AudioNext
keycode 144 = XF86AudioPrev
keycode 227 = XF86LaunchF
keycode 249 = XF86ZoomIn

Save and close the file, then logout and back in again. You can now assign the buttons to do anything you want. For example, use the Back and Forward buttons (next the cursor keys) to flip desktops using the cube effect in Beryl (set this using the Beryl settings manager). You can set most of the other keys using Gnome vis System - Preferences - Keyboard Shortcuts.

For the ThinkVantage and Zoom buttons, I used xbindkeys. Open a terminal and type:

$ xbindkeys --defaults > ~/.xbindkeysrc
$ xbindkeys-config

Click "New" and assign a remark to the new shortcut. Then press "Grab" and press the combination you want (ex: The ThinkVantage button). You can then set the action you want executed in the "Action" field.

Video Drivers

Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 950 (GMA950)

Since the Fedora installer didn't detect the graphics device properly, it uses the Vesa driver. Which works, but that's not really what we want to use. After installing the xorg-x11-drv-i810 package, I edited the /etc/X11/xorg.conf, and changed the driver from "vesa" to "intel". Then, restart X. That's it.

ATI Mobility Radeon X1300 (M52) & X1400 (M54)

ATI's drivers did not work with Fedora 7 because they couldn't handle the xorg version there. Version 8.39.4, and above, are compatible with Fedora 7. Matching kernel modules are provided by the livna repository.

# rpm -i
# yum install kmod-fglrx
at least for the X1400, an aticonfig --overlay-type=Xv was necessary to prevent a number of odd display issues.

The Fingerprint Reader

Thanks to the efforts of the ThinkFinger guys, the fingerprint reader works very well in Linux using entirely Free Software. After installing thinkfinger, you need to edit /etc/pam.d/system-auth as root (be careful!):

Above the line that reads:

auth        sufficient nullok try_first_pass

Add a new line that reads:

auth        sufficient

So, the auth section of your /etc/pam.d/system-auth file should look like:

auth        required
auth        sufficient
auth        sufficient nullok try_first_pass
auth        requisite uid >= 500 quiet
auth        required

Save the updated /etc/pam.d/system-auth, then as root, run:

# /usr/sbin/tf-tool --add-user spot

Of course, if your username isn't spot, change it! It will prompt you to swipe your finger over the reader three times.

Thats it! Now, you can login using either a password or a fingerprint.

Desktop Effects

Assuming you have you graphics drivers properly installed you just have to

Goto System->Prefrences->Look and Feel -> Desktop Effects and click enable.


Much credit goes to User:JohnCallaway for his [Installing Fedora 7 on a Thinkpad T60] page. I pretty much just left everything he used for Fedora 7 up as I didn't have to change much and I used his guide to get my version of fedora 8 working.


I think I linked to the references I used