fingerprint reader - How to enable finger printer with Thinkpad X230

  • user95089

    I am a newbie with Ubuntu and Linux, and I just switched from Windows 8. I have installed 12.04 on my new Lenovo Thinkpad x230. It seems everything else works perfectly except the finger printer. I have been using Finger Printer for a long time, and I really rely it on for my Lastpass application. But I don't know how to enable or install the driver of the finger printer. Can anybody help me with this?

    Thanks in advance.

  • Answers
  • Jorge Castro

    For 13.04 and newer

    For the X220/X230:

    sudo apt-get update  
    sudo apt-get install libpam-fprintd libfprint0 fprint-demo fprintd  

    Then run this command to configure pam:

    sudo pam-auth-update  

    Finally enroll your finger with:

  • Eric Carvalho

    For 12.04

    I have a X220 Thinkpad and I use fprint and it works well!

    Add the PPA to get the latest version:

    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:fingerprint/fprint  

    And install fprint:

    sudo apt-get update  
    sudo apt-get install libpam-fprint libfprint0 fprint-demo gksu-polkit fprintd  

    Then run this command to configure pam:

    sudo pam-auth-update  

    Finnaly enroll your finger with:


    For Ubuntu 12.04 at ThinkPad X230

    According to

    1. Add this PPA to your sources:

      sudo add-apt-repository ppa:fingerprint/fprint
      sudo apt-get update
      sudo apt-get upgrade
    2. Install the software:

      sudo apt-get install libfprint0 fprint-demo libpam-fprintd gksu-polkit
    3. Update authentication methods:

      sudo pam-auth-update
    4. Enroll your finger:

      sudo pam_fprint_enroll

    Then it have started working for me.

  • ScottyK

    The X230 has an "upgraded" fingerprint sensor with an onboard co-processor. Its the 147e:2020. As of right now, it appears to be unsupported.

  • Mark

    The fprint library has been upgraded to support the X230 finger print reader!
    Get it here:

    (Typed on an X230 with working finger print reader!)

  • Related Question

    command line - Thinkpad fingerprint scan only at login
  • lebenlechzer

    I know how to set up the fingerprint reader for my Thinkpad X220 in Ubuntu 11.10.

    My question is: Is it possible to only use the fingerprint reader at the LightDM-Login and not when typing "sudo ..." in the terminal or starting an application that needs superuser rights?

  • Related Answers
  • taneli

    This solution assumes that you only have (or had) to modify /etc/pam.d/common-auth to make fingerprint reader work.

    • Make a copy of the file sudo cp -p /etc/pam.d/common-auth /etc/pam.d/common-auth-finger and make the necessary changes to that file instead (if you use pam-auth-update or some other automated tool, just let it make changes, and swap the files afterwards)
    • In /etc/pam.d/lightdm replace the line that has @include common-auth to read @include common-auth-finger

    This should be all that is needed. If you had changed pam configuration in a different way, please tell how.