I checked this post on AskUbuntu, but like the OP my BIOS does not have a setting for 'smart fan'. My BIOS though has something similar called 'Thermal Performance' wherein it's already set to maximum performance.

But using Hardware Sensors Indicator my fan speed barely reaches 3000 RPM (it's usually stuck around 2600 to 2700 RPM) compared to the indicated RPM of my laptop which is 5400 RPM.

There is a fan control setup for 10.04 specifically for Thinkpad here but I don't want to risk it since it's meant for a rather outdated distro already.

Is there a way change the fan speed if I can't access it through BIOS?

I'm using ThinkPad R61i 12.04 64-bit, 160 GB HDD, Intel T5870, 4 GB RAM.


If you want direct control via the ThinkPad driver then the following wiki page is very helpful:


  • Thank you for this, but unfortunately I'm clueless on how to do the steps since they will be terminal-based. Is there somewhere I can get a step by step for this? Also, are the steps offered still applicable to 12.04? – onvas Aug 21 '12 at 3:38
  • -1 You shouldn't be answering a question with just a link. – boomt14 Jun 25 '16 at 20:58

The link above has a perfect solution to the issue. I'm reproducing the link here:


Follow all the instructions in the guide of the above link. Then in the /etc/thinkfan.conf file, make the following entry at the end:

(5, 0, 40)

(7, 38, 45)

(64, 44, 60)

Only the above three statements in the matrix are enough. Delete or comment the previous matrix entry. Reboot, and now the fan runs at full speed when temperature rises to 45C and drops to the previous speed at 44C. You may change the values slightly to suit your PC.

  • 1
    The vital link is broken – Steve Roome Jun 5 '16 at 18:34
  • Link is broken. (HTTP 404) -1 – boomt14 Jun 25 '16 at 21:00

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