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I am installing Arch Linux on a Thinkpad W530, using the LiveCD. When I boot from the LiveCD, at the Syslinux bootloader screen, my hardware buttons (volume/mute) and Fn-keys work. I am able to control the brightness. But once I boot into the Arch live medium, they stop working. I checked lsmod and have thinkpad_acpi running. Is this just a problem because I am running LiveCD and haven't installed Arch yet?

Is there another module that I have to run? Do I need to install Xorg first?

I have installed Debian and Ubuntu, and almost everything works out of the box. Including when running their LiveCD. What allows Ubuntu to recognize the Fn-keys?

  • Does the W530 have optimus options in BIOS? Which GPU are you using to boot? Try adding nox2apic to the kernel boot line. – ILMostro_7 May 21 '16 at 22:25
  • Yes, it does. I also tried just booting with the integrated card. And I added that parameter and I still get the same issue. – Quaxton Hale May 21 '16 at 22:33
  • I feel like I had dealt with something like this before on Arch, can't remember specific fix. What's the output of lsmod, if you can provide it somehow? – ILMostro_7 May 21 '16 at 22:41
  • Wait, so the main question is about the Function Keys working correctly? Now I have to regroup my thoughts about this question. – ILMostro_7 May 21 '16 at 22:43
  • Yes, sorry if I confused you. I was wondering why the Fn keys and hardware buttons work in the selection menu of the live CD but not the actual Arch live medium. – Quaxton Hale May 21 '16 at 22:45
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I believe the Fn keys are mapped to X86... named keys. Therefore, I'm assuming you have to install the x-server first. As for the brightness issue, ArchWiki has some relevant information, among which is the possible systemd-backlight problem/workaround:

Inverted Brightness (Intel i915 only)

Symptoms:

after installing xf86-video-intel systemd-backlight.service turns off the backlight during boot

possible solution: mask systemd-backlight.service switching from X to another VT turns the backlight off the brightness keys are inverted (i.e. turning up the brightness makes the screen darker)

This problem may be solved by adding i915.invert_brightness=1 to the list of kernel parameters.

  • I installed X first. Still the same problem. I was hoping I could copy over some configuration files that Ubuntu uses, so I wouldn't have to bind the keys myself. – Quaxton Hale May 22 '16 at 21:38

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