Gentoo Forums
Gentoo Forums
Gentoo Forums
Quick Search: in
Coreboot on Lenovo X220
View unanswered posts
View posts from last 24 hours

 
Reply to topic    Gentoo Forums Forum Index Off the Wall
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Diezel
l33t
l33t


Joined: 04 Feb 2003
Posts: 600
Location: Karjaa, Finland

PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2020 10:31 am    Post subject: Coreboot on Lenovo X220 Reply with quote

Hi folks,

got my hands on a decent X220 with a good battery and event though I have newer devices this is where I find myself spending most of the time. I had forgotten how good the keyboards are on these things.
Anyway, I've been researching putting Coreboot on it, and while there are a lot of youtube videos I kind of like reading about the process a bit more. So wondering if anyone has done this on a X220 or a similar device recently and would like to give out any pointers for the process. I'm still waiting for the clamp to actually be able to do this on the device but trying to collect as much information as possible before the D-day.
_________________
A bus station is where a bus stops, a train station is where a train stops. On
my desk I have a work station..
Nixadmins.net
FLUG member 473
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
sdauth
Apprentice
Apprentice


Joined: 19 Sep 2018
Posts: 174
Location: Ásgarðr

PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2020 2:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did it on x220i for a friend almost two years ago. There are tons of resources online to do it so I'll just mention that you will need to emerge "gnat-gpl" which will build an "ada enabled" GCC toolchain, you'll need it to be able to build the coreboot toolchain on Gentoo.
Also, make sure to use shortest as possible jumper cables (by experience, no more than 20cm) between your hardware flasher and test clip (Pomona are great but expensive). Double check also (with a multimeter) that you're providing no more than 3v to power the chip. Some cheap (but nice) hardware flasher like ch341a provides 5v instead of 3v. I don't use that myself but I read some bad stories online. :lol:
Also, make sure to research into "me_cleaner" to be able to clean most of nasty ME related stuff.
https://github.com/corna/me_cleaner/wiki/External-flashing#neutralize-and-shrink-intel-me-useful-only-for-coreboot

x2** are really easy to flash, you only need to remove keyboard and palmrest to access the chip. (Different for story for T400 for example but it's just some more screws anyway)

EDIT : Make sure to upgrade to latest lenovo bios before anything else. It will upgrade the EC. It's difficult (or even impossible) to do it after. (once coreboot is flashed). Also, make a dump of factory bios two or three times (make sure checksum match) and store it somewhere safe before flashing coreboot.

And also, make a dump of vbios while you're still running lenovo bios : https://01.org/linuxgraphics/documentation/development/how-dump-video-bios
It could be useful if you need to boot Windows for example. You'll need to embed it into the coreboot rom.

EDIT2 : If you're good at soldering, it is also possible to replace the current chip with a bigger one. (16MiB works and allows to fit bigger payload for example, like a full linux kernel with initramfs embedded), also on some boards, you'll find a smaller pad (SOIC8) below the SOIC16 chip. So it is possible to solder a SOIC8 instead. Did it myself on a T400. Much easier to solder. :wink:
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Diezel
l33t
l33t


Joined: 04 Feb 2003
Posts: 600
Location: Karjaa, Finland

PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2020 6:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the tips sdauth. I ordered the Pomona test clip as it was the only one I could find shipping to Finland and looking decent :D.
The jumper cables however are 30cm if I remember correctly, so I'll have to think about that.
I don't have a specific hardware flasher, I was thinking of using the Raspberry Pi 4, so I'll look into that, and sure will take a look at the voltage with the multimeter before connecting anything.

I'm fairly sure this X220 will never see Windows again but I will follow your advice and take a dump of the vbios as well, who knows and better to be safe than sorry I guess.

I think for now soldering will have to wait, let's see if I can keep the device alive and getting it to coreboot first. If successful I'm sure I will look at options later to customize it more.

//Mats
_________________
A bus station is where a bus stops, a train station is where a train stops. On
my desk I have a work station..
Nixadmins.net
FLUG member 473
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Reply to topic    Gentoo Forums Forum Index Off the Wall All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum