Integrated Fingerprint Reader
IBMs second generation of T42 models (released in Autumn 2004) was the first to feature an integrated fingerprint reader. Various models since then have had this feature, actually implemented with a number of different devices, all of which appear on the USB bus. Some are just scanners, others do the recognition in the device itself.
Read more about the various models of reader on the libfprint wiki
The UPEK device is supported by thinkfinger. Those devices and Authentec ones are supported by libfprint.
However: The fingerprint reader is an INSECURE device and gives a false sense of security! There has been quite a bit of research by a hacker named Starbug, a member of the Chaos Computer Club, Berlin, Germany. He outlined in two very good talks how to forge each and every available fingerprint sensor available at the cost of a few euros, using materials from your local hardware store, a digicam and a laser printer! Here's some links:
Remember, using fingerprints for authentication is much similar to having a password which is written on anything you touch.
For some time various projects provided support for various readers. That work mostly been unified under the fprint library, and thus libfprint and libpam-fprint (which provides authentication via PAM) are the best way to go, and in the meantime included by default in most Linux distributions. However, it seems that lately this project has stalled, and no support for newer chips has emerged for some time.
Alternatively, the original Thinkfinger project is at http://thinkfinger.sourceforge.net. It only provides support for the 1st generation reader, and has not been updated since 2007; see the How to enable the fingerprint reader with ThinkFinger for detailed instructions. It is also in Debian Lenny. This integrates seamlessly with PAM and doesn't produce a tacky graphical prompt.
If you've followed the instructions and "tf-tool --verify" works, but nothing else does, make sure that the "uinput" module is loaded.
Feb 2011: The following works as smoothly on Ubuntu and T410s: https://launchpad.net/~fingerprint/+archive/fingerprint-gui
A closed source driver for the UPEK device is available. It interfaces to the hardware as a user-space USB driver through /proc/bus/usb and provides a BioAPI 1.10 device, which can then be interfaced to pam for authentication by user programs. The driver can be downloaded from http://www.upek.com/support/downloads/linux/; see the corresponding HOWTO for detailed instructions. It however tends to be less stable than the above opensource drivers.
Models featuring this Technology
UPEK Touchstrip (model?) - USB 0483:2016
- ThinkPad R52, R60
- ThinkPad T42, T42p, T43, T43p, T60, T60p, T61, T61p
- ThinkPad X41, X41 Tablet, X60, X60s, X60 Tablet, X300
- ThinkPad Z61t, Z61p, Z61m
UPEK Touchchip TCS4C - USB 147e:1000
UPEK Touchstrip TCRD4C - USB 147e:2016
- ThinkPad R61, R61i
- ThinkPad Edge 14", Edge 15"
- ThinkPad L412, L512
- ThinkPad T400s, T410, T410i, T410s, T410si, T420, T510, T510i
- ThinkPad W510, W701, W701ds
- ThinkPad X201, X201i, X201s, X201 Tablet
Authentec AES1610 - USB 08ff:1600
Authentec AES2501 - USB 08ff:2580
Authentec AES2810 - USB 08ff:2810