ThinkPad R400

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ThinkPad R400
Manufacturer Lenovo
Name ThinkPad R400
Released 2009
Chipset Intel Cantiga GM45
CPU Intel Core 2 Duo (Penryn/Merom family) or
Celeron M (Merom L family)
Graphics Intel GMA 4500MHD (and ATI Mobility Radeon HD
                                                 3470 or nVIDIA 
											GeForce 9300M on some models) |
Display | 1280x800/1440x900 TFT |
Memory | Up to 8GB |
Architecture | x86_64 |
EC | Proprietary |
Original boot firmware | LenovoBIOS |
Intel ME/AMD PSP | Present. Can be completly disabled. |
Flash chip | SOIC-8/SOIC-16 4MiB/8MiB (Upgradable to 16MiB) |
W+: Works; 
N: Doesn't work; 
U: Untested; 
P+: Partially works; 
Internal flashing with original boot firmware N
Display W+
Audio W+
RAM Init W+
External output W+
Display brightness P+
Payloads supported
GRUB Works
SeaBIOS Works
SeaBIOS with GRUB Works

Dell Latitude E6400

If you haven’t bought an R400 yet: the Dell Latitude E6400 is much easier to flash; no disassembly required, it can be flashed entirely in software from Dell BIOS to Canoeboot. It is the same hardware generation (GM45), with same CPUs, video processor, etc.


It is believed that all or most R400 laptops are compatible. See notes about CPU compatibility for potential incompatibilities.

There are two possible flash chip sizes for the R400: 4MiB (32Mbit) or 8MiB (64Mbit). This can be identified by the type of flash chip below the palmrest: 4MiB is SOIC-8, 8MiB is SOIC-16.

The R400 laptops come with the ME (and sometimes AMT in addition) before flashing Canoeboot. Canoeboot disables and removes it by using a modified descriptor: see ../install/ich9utils.html (contains notes, plus instructions)

Flashing instructions can be found at ../install/#flashprog

NOTE: Canoeboot standardises on flashprog now, as of 3 May 2024, which is a fork of flashrom.

EC update

It is recommended that you update to the latest EC firmware version. The EC firmware is separate from Canoeboot, so we don’t actually provide that, but if you still have Lenovo BIOS then you can just run the Lenovo BIOS update utility, which will update both the BIOS and EC version. See:

NOTE: this can only be done when you are using Lenovo BIOS. How to update the EC firmware while running Canoeboot is unknown. Canoeboot only replaces the BIOS firmware, not EC.

Updated EC firmware has several advantages e.g. bettery battery handling.

The R400 is almost identical to the X200, code-wise. See x200.html.

TODO: put hardware register logs here like on the X200 and T400 page.

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