Problem with lm-sensors

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Information about the problem of lm_sensors corrupting the eeprom of Thinkpads.

Problem description

lm_sensors prior to 2.6.5 caused the corruption of the Thinkpad's AT24RF08 EEPROM, leading to the Thinkpad not being bootable anymore. The common error on the affected models was:


or for the Thinkpad 240:

0188: Invalid RFID Serialization Area

Also affected is glms (GNOME LM-Sensors).

lm_sensors doesn't work with ThinkPads at all - even if this problem wouldn't occur. So just don't care about lm_sensors and use ibm-acpi if possible.

Affected Models

Affected Operating Systems

  • Linux, all flavours


It is known that the corruption was caused during the execution of sensors-detect and it is also known that it is the specific Atmel 24RF08 eeprom that is affected.

Hence the developers of lm_sensors included a Thinkpad detection routine into the software starting from 2.6.5 and published this readme. If you try to run sensors-detect on a Thinkpad it just quits with an error message, protecting your Thinkpads eeprom.

However, even though even the inner workings that cause the eeprom to get corrupted seem to be known, it seems impossible to avoid it and make lm_sensors work at the same time.

Currently it is unclear if newer Thinkpad models are affected or not.


Use ibm-acpi to gather information about processor temperature and the like. All the interesting Thinkpad I2C buses are not accessible to the host CPU, anyway. The embedded controller takes care of them.

In any case, avoid lm_sensors and related software!