Len­ovo fi­nally joins the Linux Ven­dor Firmware Ser­vice

ThinkPad firmware up­dates will soon be eas­ier to in­stall

Linux User & Developer - - Open Source -

Run­ning a Linux-pow­ered thinkPad, the lap­top range launched by ibM and ac­quired by Len­ovo in 2005, is a gen­er­ally pleas­ing ex­pe­ri­ence. How­ever, with­out the right firmware up­dates, which need to be sought out, it’s un­likely to be per­fect. Thanks to Len­ovo join­ing the Linux Ven­dor Firmware Ser­vice, this has just be­come a lot eas­ier.

The LVFS en­ables equip­ment man­u­fac­tur­ers to dis­trib­ute UeFI firmware di­rectly to users, while mak­ing the process as safe and re­li­able as pos­si­ble, with the min­i­mum of re­boots. Ac­cord­ing to the LVFS in­tro­duc­tion at https://fwupd.org, “The LVFS runs on a ded­i­cated vir­tual pri­vate server and uses a pub­lic CDN for meta­data. ev­ery month there are over 50 mil­lion files be­ing down­loaded from 10 mil­lion clients. There are cur­rently 281 de­vices sup­ported on the LVFS with 758 avail­able firmware ver­sions.”

Var­i­ous man­u­fac­tur­ers are sup­port­ing Linux in this way, but not all. An­nounc­ing the news in his blog, Red Hat’s Richard Hughes noted: “I do think Len­ovo should be ap­plauded for the work done so far due to the enor­mity of the task, rather than chas­tised about com­ing to the party a lit­tle late. If any­one from HP is read­ing this, you’re now of­fi­cially late.”

Bring­ing Len­ovo into the LVFS hasn’t just hap­pened overnight. Many changes have been made to ac­com­mo­date the move, such as “…changes to the low level fwup­date li­brary, fwupd, and even the LVFS ad­min por­tal it­self for var­i­ous ven­dor-de­fined rea­sons.” The LVFS only sup­ports Len­ovo hard­ware “pro­duced fairly re­cently” how­ever; “There’s no point look­ing for up­dates on your beloved T61” is the of­fi­cial ad­vice. There’s also lit­tle word on what de­vices from the Chi­nese man­u­fac­turer will be sup­ported in fu­ture, but it’s cer­tainly a step in the right di­rec­tion for now.

Len­ovo’s pop­u­lar Linux ThinkPad line will ben­e­fit from LVFS mem­ber­ship

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