T440p touchpad replacement failed :(

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T440p touchpad replacement failed :(

/dev/rob0
I heard about the replacement devices for the Single-Big-Button
abomination that came with my T440p, watched a Youtube video or two,
and I figured I was all set.  I ordered the cheap one and set about
replacing it.

Most of the hardware work was pretty straightforward, no tricks.

The bad part was to reconnect the various ribbon cables.  There are
three: one for the eraserhead, one for the keyboard, and one for the
touchpad.  All were challenging.

Each has a little black plastic clip which holds the ribbon cable in
place.  My problem was the clip on the touchpad's cable, which it
seems can no longer hold firmly.

I used electrical tape to try to hold it in place, but it seems not
to be working.  I have my hard drive in a different machine so I
booted a live USB stick, and no joy on the pointer.

I guess I'll now have a machine with no built-in pointer device.
It's not a "laptop" if I have to put it on a desk and have a place
for a mouse.  Sigh.
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Re: T440p touchpad replacement failed :(

Hendrik-Jan Heins-2
Hi,

I experienced similar issues in replacing the touchpad on my X240.

First: make sure you have a touchpad that is for your device apparently the T440 and X240 do NOT have the same touchpad and connector layout!
(This was my first mistake)

Second: if you replace the touchpad, also replace the ribbon cables. They are not made to be connected and disconnected too often.

In my case the whole thin worked after I got the correct new touchpad and a new ribbon cable.
To get everything in place, I needed to completely disassemble the machine though. I hope the T440 is a bit easier to do.

best,

Hendrik-Jan

P.S. I know it is no consolation but due to this I also had a mouse connected for about 4 weeks as there was no internal pointing device anymore.

2016-08-26 22:27 GMT+02:00 /dev/rob0 <[hidden email]>:
I heard about the replacement devices for the Single-Big-Button
abomination that came with my T440p, watched a Youtube video or two,
and I figured I was all set.  I ordered the cheap one and set about
replacing it.

Most of the hardware work was pretty straightforward, no tricks.

The bad part was to reconnect the various ribbon cables.  There are
three: one for the eraserhead, one for the keyboard, and one for the
touchpad.  All were challenging.

Each has a little black plastic clip which holds the ribbon cable in
place.  My problem was the clip on the touchpad's cable, which it
seems can no longer hold firmly.

I used electrical tape to try to hold it in place, but it seems not
to be working.  I have my hard drive in a different machine so I
booted a live USB stick, and no joy on the pointer.

I guess I'll now have a machine with no built-in pointer device.
It's not a "laptop" if I have to put it on a desk and have a place
for a mouse.  Sigh.
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Re: T440p touchpad replacement failed :(

/dev/rob0
On Sat, Aug 27, 2016 at 10:24:19AM +0200, Hendrik-Jan Heins wrote:
> I experienced similar issues in replacing the touchpad on my X240.
>
> First: make sure you have a touchpad that is for your device
> apparently the T440 and X240 do NOT have the same touchpad and
> connector layout! (This was my first mistake)

The device I bought claimed to be T440 compatible, and the ribbon
connectors were similar.

> Second: if you replace the touchpad, also replace the ribbon
> cables. They are not made to be connected and disconnected too
> often.

Okay, I will try this.  But I don't think my problem is the cable
itself; I think it is the connector on the motherboard.

> In my case the whole thin worked after I got the correct new
> touchpad and a new ribbon cable.
> To get everything in place, I needed to completely disassemble the
> machine though. I hope the T440 is a bit easier to do.

Right, it wasn't that bad.  Back panel (2 screws and slides off),
optical drive, a whole bunch of screws holding the top bezel, the
keyboard (which really only needed to come loose, not be removed, to
remove the top bezel), and then just the screws attaching the
touchpad to the bezel.

I also removed the hard drive according to instruction on Youtube,
but that was not necessary AFAICT.

> P.S. I know it is no consolation but due to this I also had a mouse
> connected for about 4 weeks as there was no internal pointing
> device anymore.

It's a blessing in disguise. :)  I think I am more productive when
keeping hands on the keyboard.  Much of what I need to do is (or can
be) console work, such as this mutt MUA I use.

I appreciate that you took the time to reply and to share your
experience.  Technically I guess this should have been flagged as
off-topic, because it has nothing to do with software, but I know
that the touchpad abomination has been a common sore point among
Linux Thinkpad users.

(Personally I expect to continue using this Thinkpad for several
years to come, but I'm ill-inclined to consider a future Lenovo
purchase after this experience.)
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Re: T440p touchpad replacement failed :(

/dev/rob0
On Sat, Aug 27, 2016 at 10:03:00AM -0500, /dev/rob0 wrote:
> On Sat, Aug 27, 2016 at 10:24:19AM +0200, Hendrik-Jan Heins wrote:
> > Second: if you replace the touchpad, also replace the ribbon
> > cables. They are not made to be connected and disconnected too
> > often.
>
> Okay, I will try this.  But I don't think my problem is the cable
> itself; I think it is the connector on the motherboard.

Yes!  I looked again at this cable.  This time I took out the new
touchpad again and examined that end of it also.

It has color coding on each end: green, with a transparent tape
"handle" on the motherboard end; blue and no handle on the touchpad
end.  Interestingly, the motherboard end appears to be about a half
millimeter wider.

This time I left a bit more length to go through the bezel slot to
reach the motherboard connector, and IT WORKS!  Partly.

I can move the pointer with the touchpad, and the main touchpad's
click is functional.  The three buttons DO NOT respond.

This result was not surprising, because close examination showed a
minor defect in one of the ribbon cable's contacts.

So I do need to get a new ribbon cable now.  But that's okay;
optimism has returned. :)

Thanks again for the suggestion, which has gotten me on the right
track, I believe.  Perhaps in a week or three I can report back my
success? :)
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Re: T440p touchpad replacement failed :(

gregor herrmann-2
In reply to this post by /dev/rob0
On Sat, 27 Aug 2016 10:03:00 -0500, /dev/rob0 wrote:

> I also removed the hard drive according to instruction on Youtube,

YouTube? (IBM/)Lenovo provide excellent maintenance manuals which
explain in great depth and with detailed pictures each required step
for replacing parts. I can only recommend downloading and using those
manuals.


Cheers,
gregor

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Re: T440p touchpad replacement failed :(

/dev/rob0-2
On Sun, Aug 28, 2016 at 03:46:05AM +0200, gregor herrmann wrote:
> On Sat, 27 Aug 2016 10:03:00 -0500, /dev/rob0 wrote:
>
> > I also removed the hard drive according to instruction on
> > Youtube,
>
> YouTube? (IBM/)Lenovo provide excellent maintenance manuals which
> explain in great depth and with detailed pictures each required
> step for replacing parts. I can only recommend downloading and
> using those manuals.

Good point, and yes I did, but I found it less than adequate and
certainly not encouraging.  Those drawings are hard to follow
sometimes.

For example, removal of the keyboard shows the rubber cover of the
ribbon cable connectors, but does not mention it's stuck on there;
and nothing about how to deal with that.  The video guide was
reassuring, and showed it in a way I could see it better.

Furthermore, I found the instructions for keyboard bezel removal to
be removing too much.  Lenovo said to remove the wireless LAN card,
the WAN card, the memory, the coin-cell battery, and the fan.  I
didn't need to do those.  And the keyboard did not need to be
disconnected; I could have saved a half hour of grief and removed the
bezel assembly around the still-connected keyboard.

Sadly, that's the kind of documentation manufacturers of all kinds of
things offer.  More important than engineers' review is the lawyers'
review, and in many cases IME the lawyers add false and misleading
information in the interest of protecting the company from possible
liability.

As free software users we have had to learn to take authoritative
statements from hardware manufacturers with some skepticism.  How
many times have you read, "This device only works in Windows," and
found that to be completely false?

That said, I concede your point about the value of consulting
Lenovo's maintenance manual.
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Re: T440p touchpad replacement success :)

/dev/rob0-2
In reply to this post by /dev/rob0
On Sat, Aug 27, 2016 at 01:55:51PM -0500, I wrote:
> This time I left a bit more length to go through the bezel slot
> to reach the motherboard connector, and IT WORKS!  Partly.
>
> I can move the pointer with the touchpad, and the main touchpad's
> click is functional.  The three buttons DO NOT respond.

Um, in fact, yes they do, much as Cameron Gray (in his blog at
camerongray.me) described for his T440s.

So in fact I think this is over but for the software tweaking.

> This result was not surprising, because close examination showed
> a minor defect in one of the ribbon cable's contacts.
>
> So I do need to get a new ribbon cable now.  But that's okay;
> optimism has returned. :)

I do think I should order a new cable anyway, and I'll get a set of
screws at the same time.

Thanks again for the comments and encouragement. :)  Best of luck to
the next person who tries it.  I can already tell I am going to love
it.
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Re: T440p touchpad replacement failed :(

Dmitry Nezhevenko
In reply to this post by /dev/rob0-2
On Sun, Aug 28, 2016 at 09:18:08AM -0500, /dev/rob0 wrote:
 
> That said, I concede your point about the value of consulting
> Lenovo's maintenance manual.

Just want to let you know. I've successfully replaced touchpad on my t440p
machine maybe half year ago. Purchased new one on ebay (just touchpad
without any cables/connectors). So I've used existing touchpad cable.

I was able to do it using just Lenovo maintenance manual (skipped RTC
battery and CPU fan section).

Everything works fine under linux. As far as I remember, some
input-related update was needed (kernel/evdev/libinput), doesn't remember
exactly. But with current debian unstable everything works out of the box.

Please note that this 'upgrade' touchpad (at least my one) is probably
some preproduction unit. Not sure. But if you need to use it under Windows,
be ready to get driver issues. Windows update tries to install wrong
version of drivers, and working one is pretty outdated (win10 will replace
it with non-working version automatically)
 
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Re: T440p touchpad replacement failed :(

Stefan Monnier
In reply to this post by /dev/rob0-2
> Sadly, that's the kind of documentation manufacturers of all kinds of
> things offer.  More important than engineers' review is the lawyers'
> review, and in many cases IME the lawyers add false and misleading
> information in the interest of protecting the company from possible
> liability.

FWIW, I found Lenovo's hardware maintenance manuals to be much better
than the average (actually, for most other machines I've had I couldn't
even find such maintenance manuals; not to mention the Apple-style
tendency to make it as hard as possible for normal users to perform
maintenance).

For some, a video might be easier to follow, but at least it was good
enough for me (my own experience being with X30, T60, T61, and X201s.
No experience with the more recent machines).


        Stefan

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Re: T440p touchpad replacement failed :(

Hendrik-Jan Heins-2
The documentation and the manuals are a big reason for me to buy Thinkpads. I know of no other supplier that delivers such a complete documentation package and has it available for so long. Most laptop manufacturers remove documentation about their products after less than 3 years. IBM/Lenovo is somewhat unique in this respect.
This, and the trackpoints are the 2 reasons I always bought Thinkpads.

2016-08-31 3:14 GMT+02:00 Stefan Monnier <[hidden email]>:
> Sadly, that's the kind of documentation manufacturers of all kinds of
> things offer.  More important than engineers' review is the lawyers'
> review, and in many cases IME the lawyers add false and misleading
> information in the interest of protecting the company from possible
> liability.

FWIW, I found Lenovo's hardware maintenance manuals to be much better
than the average (actually, for most other machines I've had I couldn't
even find such maintenance manuals; not to mention the Apple-style
tendency to make it as hard as possible for normal users to perform
maintenance).

For some, a video might be easier to follow, but at least it was good
enough for me (my own experience being with X30, T60, T61, and X201s.
No experience with the more recent machines).


        Stefan

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