Sean's Musings as a Service

Sean's Musings as a Service

Red Hat Linux on my Lenovo W520 brightness control not working

  • Published:
  • categories: linux
  • tags: desktop, lenovo, linux, nvidia, redhat, rhel6, thinkpad, usability, w520

So now that I have been using Red Hat for a few weeks as my primary desktop, there have been lots of little things that are annoying. Working through a few of them now, one is that putting my laptop to sleep (which works fine out of the box) and I can awake from hibernate fine but the brightness controls are out of whack, as other users have identified in the Lenovo forums1. Also noticed that users on other platforms see the same thing2, so it is a hardware/driver issues since this can be done via the nvidia-settings3 command.

Based on the ThinkWiki4 site other users have gotten this working, and based on the guidance from the Ubuntu users. Unfortunately there is no easy way to do this via a tool, so you just need to hack at your xorg.conf file… not my favorite method since I quickly forget and lose these changes during upgrades.

Section "Device"
        Identifier  "Device0"
        Driver      "nvidia"
        VendorName  "NVIDIA Corporation"
        Option "RegistryDwords" "EnableBrightnessControl=1"

Now logout or restart X and you should be able to use your regular brightness applet or in my case the ThinkPad buttons to control the brightness as expected.