Lenovo ThinkPad L470 Firmware update with Linux

My company notebook (A Lenovo ThinkPad L470) sometimes crashed when I put it into the docking station: It turn back on, the external monitor turns on, but after that I only see a black screen with the mouse cursor. Today I had enough and performed the pending firmware update, which also includes the Intel CPU microcode updates.

As a Linux only user performing the firmware update is still fun, as Lenovo provides only a Windows tool or as an alternative a bootable CD. There also is the Linux Vendor Firmware Service which nowadays simplified the process and Levono also contributes to it, but not for my model.

wget https://download.lenovo.com/pccbbs/mobiles/r0guj17wd.iso

That gets me the file r0guj17wd.iso.

Getting a USB-DVD drive and burning the image to a DVD media I somehow consider wasteful, so I tried to put the image on a spare USB stick (here /dev/dec):

sudo dd bs=1M if=r0guj17wd.iso of=/dev/sdc

But the Notebook refused to boot from it.

Next I had a look at it using isoinfo -d r0guj17wd.iso which showed the DVD to be empty but only contain an El Torito boot image. So I extracted the boot image into file:

geteltorito -o ./leno.boot r0guj17wd.iso

Using file on it shows it to be a partitioned disk image with only one partition, so I mounted that:

sudo losetup -P /dev/loop0 ./leno.boot
sudo mount -o ro /dev/loop0p1 /mnt

Finally I was able to access the files and copied it onto my Debian 9 Stretch systems EFI partition:

sudo install -D /mnt/FLASH/NoDCCheck_bootx64.efi /boot/efi/FLASH/NoDCCheck_bootx64.efi
sudo install -D /mnt/FLASH/ShellFlash.efi /boot/efi/FLASH/ShellFlash.efi
sudo install -D /mnt/FLASH/R0GET66W/\$0AR0G00.FL1 /boot/efi/FLASH/R0GET66W/\$0AR0G00.FL1
sudo install -D /mnt/EFI/Boot/Bootx64.efi /boot/efi/EFI/lenovo/bootx64.efi

Next I told the firmware to boot into the firmware update tool once:

sudo efibootmgr --create-only --disk /dev/sda --part 1 --label "FWUpdate" --loader '\EFI\lenovo\bootx64.efi'
sudo efibootmgr --bootnext 0001  # or whatever gets created by the line above
sudo efibootmgr --verbose

And finally the reboot:

sudo reboot

The gets you into the firmware update tool: It only sets up the notebook to perform the firmware update on the next reboot, so you have to reboot again once more.

That all went fine so now Iā€™m at version 1.66.

After the update you can remove the files amd the boot entry:

sudo efibootmgr -B -b 0001
sudo rm -rf /boot/efi/FLASH /boot/efi/EFI/lenovo
Written on October 4, 2018