How do you rate this laptop with Linux?
69% (9)
15% (2)
8% (1)
0% (0)
8% (1)

Lenovo Thinkpad SL400


Since they are very similar, take a look at Lenovo Thinkpad SL300 and Lenovo Thinkpad SL500's pages

This guide is intended to provide you details on how well this laptop works with Linux and which modules you need to configure. For details on how to actually install and configure the required modules have a look at our guides section for distribution specific instructions.

This page is just for discussing using Linux on the Lenovo Thinkpad SL400. For a general discussion about this laptop you can visit the Lenovo Thinkpad SL400 page on LapWik.

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For full specifications see the Lenovo ThinkPad SL400 specifications page.

NameLenovo ThinkPad SL400
ProcessorIntel Core 2 Duo
Screen14.1“ WXGA or WXGA+ Widescreen
HDD80GB to 320GB
Optical DriveDVD+-RW or Blu-ray
GraphicsIntel Graphics Media Accelerator X4500 or Nvidia GeForce 9300GS
NetworkEthernet, Thinkpad 802.11abg 802.11abgn or Intel Wifi Link 5100 or Intel Wifi Link 5300, Bluetooth

Linux Compatibility

ProcessorNo problem (Intel P8400)
ScreenNo problem (1440×900/WXGA+)
HDDNo problem
Optical DriveRead DVD/CD-ROM ok.
GraphicsWork well (Nvidia Geforce 9300GS) Proprietary Nvidia driver required to have the native resolution
SoundWork well
Ethernet Work well
WirelessWork well Intel Wifi Link 5100/5300 need kernel >= 2.6.26
BluetoothNot Tested
56K Modem Not tested
USBNo problem
FirewireNot Tested
Card Reader SDHC Card autodetected and read
ExpressCard SlotNot Tested
PCMCIANot Tested
TouchpadNo problem
TrackPointWork except the “scroll” center button
Fingerprint ReaderNot Tested


Left buttons (for changing sound volume) don't work but changing screen brightness via <Fn>+top-right-buttons do but in the opposite way (Ubuntu).


You'll need proprietary Nvidia drivers to have a decent resolution with the Nvidia graphic card and you must have a linux kernel version better or equal than 2.6.26 (tested with Ubuntu Intrepid's 2.6.27) to make wifi work with the Intel Wifi Link 5100 (should be the same for 5300). Apart form this, Linux support for the SL400 is correct.


Nicolas, 2011/11/28 21:43

With Debian 6.0.3 Wheezy working properly:

- Brightness buttons.
- Volume buttons.
- WiFi.

correangel, 2010/07/14 02:27

Alguno del foro a podido activar un capta huella con el sistema operativo linux, eso si que no sea a travez de puerto USB porque mi laptop es una lenovo thinkpad SL 400 con lector de huella dactilar y no lo he podido activar en linux. Si alguno tiene una idea por favor comunicala. Gracias

Dolu, 2010/03/22 09:35

I have installed Linux Mint 8 and OpenSuse Education for Life 11.2. as dual boot.
I am very happy with both OS.

mopiko, 2009/07/05 14:46

heloo guys.. i installed centos 5.2 on SL400. The problem is my Ethernet (Realtek RTL8168C(P)/8111C(P) PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet NIC) is not working. As for information my kernel is 2.6.18.

DagV, 2009/04/02 10:50

I hav just finished a Fedora install on my new SL400, and I am quite happy since most things work out of the box. The brightness control (Fn+Home/End) also works the supposed way (reported opposite on Ubuntu). Graphics and Wireless also work OK. I even tried a mobile 3G wireless (in Norway) which also worked out of the box. I have connected my Nokia E51 via bluetooth, no fuss. I have though seen some hick-ups returning from sleep mode, but mostly managed to get thing running again. Hopefully an improved APCI configuration will emerge shortly.

Merlyn, 2009/03/16 11:24

Hi, I don't know, how enable bluetooth. I have compiled needed modules into kernel, but still doesn't work.

Scott Marlowe, 2009/03/01 22:25

I have an SL-400 and am pretty happy with it. I'm running ubuntu 8.04.1 I had to dl a slightly hacked version of the intel video drivers back in the fall when I got it. I have the atheros wifi card which works just peachy once I dled the madwifi drivers and compiled them.

Wish the volume buttons worked, and I understand the ACPI limits all the brightness range to a maximum of 85% or so.I'd like to see lenovo fix the BIOS for that, but it seems they aren't working very hard on it.

On the plus side, all the stuff on it besides that pretty much just works and works well.

KaOS-bEat, 2008/10/05 06:30


wifi works as described here:

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lenovo_thinkpad_sl400.txt · Last modified: 2010/10/13 15:21 (external edit)
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