my Lenovo Laptop is overheating since I installed Ubuntu 11.10.
Does anyone know of a fix/cause for this problem?
There are several factors in a laptop overheating. Here is what I did for my Lenovo T410 when it was having this shutdown problem. The steps are generic enough for any laptop.
Configure your bios to be more battery/power friendly
Restart and boot to your Bios (you press some function key or, in Lenovo, the "ThinkVantage" button) and go to the power options and choose more performance friendly ones. Here are the settings I changed in my Lenovo's BIOS. Don't worry if your BIOS settings are different, just hunt around for what sounds Power related and make sure it's not set to maximize performance type options. My laptop's example BIOS settings:
Don't forget to save the bios settings before exiting.
Update your BIOS
Sometimes the way the laptop talks to its parts (like the fan) changes in later BIOS versions. If you get the latest BIOS installed, there's a chance that if there was some issue in the BIOS that was causing the overheat, it might have been fixed.
Warning!!! Back up your data before updating your BIOS!
It's usually safe to update but there's a chance things could go wrong.
Lenovo, in your case, makes it easy to update by having a bootable cd. You can google it like this: Lenovo T410 "Bios Update" "Bootable CD" (insert your model number instead of T410). You burn the .iso image and boot off of it and follow the on screen instructions to update the BIOS.
Cut down on heavy graphics effects in your Desktop
Go into your Display settings and make sure that you don't overdo it with effects. If you're running beryl or some other effects engine, consider limiting the number of effects.
Make sure the fan isn't stuck
If you want to maintain it and feel brave, remove the keyboard (typically unscrewing a few screws and gently prying it from the hinges under the bottom keys) and look at the fan and make sure there's no dust blocking it so that it can spin easily.
Monitor the Temperature
On unity there is:
For the command line, there is powertop
Run it from unity and check the boxes for monitoring the fan and all the cores.
More great tips here.
I think that this bug report on Launchpad can be related to your problem; check it out and, if you're sure that it is related, tell in the comments that the problem can affect also Ubuntu 11.10. This is the bug report: