Thinkpad Fingerprint Reader AES2550 / AES2810 by AuthenTec Inc. and Linux

Thinkpad LogoThe fingerprint reader of a Thinkpad T4** can be used on Linux together with the fprintd library for the usual gdm login in. But there is no way to use the fingerprint reader at power on even a power on password was defined 🙁

The problem is that the fingerprint has to be written into the bios to get a pre-desktop / pre-boot authentication.

There is no way to write it on Linux.

A native Win* installation is needed… I haven’t it and won’t it!

Using VirtualBox I was able to write the fingerprint into the real bios of the T400. Windows XP Professional as guest was used, running “setup32_xvp.exe”, downloaded here from Lenovo. At first I got a strange “C:\WINDOWS path too long” error message as a part of the *.msi installation… Really strange.

However I have fixed this at the end: And my fingerprint was saved to into the Thinkpad bios with success!

The Lenovo software for Windows isn’t needed any more afterwards.

As a final step the gdm login can be disabled to make things 100% comfortable – by booting directly into the preferred user environment (System Settings -> User Accounts). Nice 😉

Thinkpad T400, Crucial M4 SSD (firmware 040H) and of course as ever

Linux FedoraThis is my basic hardware / software setup for the current software development machine at present.

It’s not the latest available, however the Thinkpad is functional and fast as usual including a perfect working finger print reader (AuthenTec AES2550/AES2810) used to login into the Gnome Display Manager (gdm).

I have replaced the optical DVD drive inside of the Ultrabay by a classical magnetic hard disk: 320 GB Western Digital, Scorpio Black, running at 7200rpm, spinned down using hdparm -Y /dev/sd* most of the time.

I love the silence of the ssd drive because it is much better to listen – for example to this: Johannes Brahms wrote it for Clara Schumann 😉


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