In the system settings for ubuntu 16.04 I can't change the screen brightness on my Dell Inspiron N7010, the scroll bar moves but nothing actually changes. Additionally I can't change the brightness through the terminal through any commands I have found on google. Can anyone help me or provide suggestion? It drains my battery extremely fast to have it on 100% brightness all the time. Thank you!


$ head /sys/class/backlight/*/brightness

==> /sys/class/backlight/dell_backlight/actual_brightness <==

==> /sys/class/backlight/dell_backlight/brightness <==

==> /sys/class/backlight/dell_backlight/max_brightness <==

==> /sys/class/backlight/intel_backlight/actual_brightness <==

==> /sys/class/backlight/intel_backlight/brightness <==

==> /sys/class/backlight/intel_backlight/max_brightness <==

$ lspci -k | grep -iEA3 '3D|VGA'

00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Core Processor Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 18)
    Subsystem: Dell Core Processor Integrated Graphics Controller
    Kernel driver in use: i915
    Kernel modules: i915
  • Identify your graphics card
    – Panther
    May 11 '17 at 19:52
  • Welcome to AskUbuntu. Please provide us some information of your computer such as your graphics card information. Also for the battery, install tlp package for battery optimization.
    – Ege Sucu
    May 11 '17 at 19:56
  • Can you add the output of head /sys/class/backlight/*/*brightness* to your question please, additional to some information about your graphics hardware and driver, e.g. the output of lspci -k | grep -iEA3 '3D|VGA'?
    – Byte Commander
    May 11 '17 at 20:45
  • @ByteCommander I added the graphics card information and the output of the backlight brightness. May 31 '17 at 0:52
  • The graphics card is Intel Ironlake Mobile. Same issue here. Aug 4 '18 at 13:29

I used the terminal commands listed both in & below the following YouTube video, to successfully control the brightness in Ubuntu MATE 16.04, on a Lenovo G570 laptop:

"Brightness Indicator : Easily control screen brightness in Linux Mint (Ubuntu)" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k5_HyOT519U

You can simply copy/paste them from below the video (running them one after the other), into your terminal window.

Alternatively, have you simply tried the FN key + Down Arrow ?

  • I followed the instructions in the YouTube video, to no avail. The brightness indicator is installed, though when I changed the value associated with it, the screen brightness does not actually change. Additionally, FN key + Down Arrow doesn't respond as expected. May 31 '17 at 1:00

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