Ubuntu 17.10's Laptop Issue Appears To Be Under Control, Fixable

Written by Michael Larabel in Ubuntu on 27 December 2017 at 10:50 AM EST. 53 Comments
A week ago Ubuntu 17.10's ISO was pulled due to a show-stopping laptop bug whereby some UEFI-enabled laptops from multiple vendors were running into "BIOS corruption" where BIOS settings could no longer be changed, USB booting becoming non-functional, and similar UEFI-related issues. Fortunately, a fixed kernel is now available and some affected users are reporting a successful workaround for making their laptops full-functioning once again.

As reported earlier, the issue stems from the Intel SPI driver found in Ubuntu 17.10's default Linux 4.13-based kernel causing the issue for some systems. Immediately they sent out an updated kernel to for now disable this driver (CONFIG_SPI_INTEL_SPI_PLATFORM) but that's to no avail to already affected Ubuntu laptop owners.

Users in the original Launchpad bug report are now reporting a set of steps for turning around a broken laptop.

The steps basically involve installing Ukuu (the Ubuntu kernel upgrade utility making it easy to install their pre-built mainline kernel packages), updating to the Linux 4.14.9 upstream kernel, restarting the system and booting to that kernel, and then rebooting once again and going into the BIOS/UEFI at which point the system should now be working correctly.

Multiple users are reporting this has corrected their UEFI system behavior. As of writing, however, Canonical has yet to issue any re-spun Ubuntu 17.10 ISOs to resume the desktop downloads on their site of the Artful Aardvark.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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