Clevo Keyboard Backlight Control for Linux

Instructions

Guide to enable and set RGB keyboard colour for any Clevo laptop with any GNU/Linux distro! Finally.

There is no doubt, that not having control over your keyboard backlight is quite frustrating. The blue keyboard light is simply quite annoying. Even if you did not purchase your laptop at NovaCustom, you can still use this guide to get your backlight working, in contrast to other vendors, such as System76. By the way, this guide should work for any new Clevo based brand, such as Sager, Schenker, XMG, Bestware, BTO, XNB and so on.

But I have already tried tuxedo’s clevo-xsm-wmi application and it didn’t work.

– Well, you have to know two certain things: Apparently, Tuxedo did restrict the keyboard backlight control to a few old Clevo models without really update their program. Secondly (perhaps only applicable for new Clevo laptops), the laptop needs a certain GRUB parameter to boot properly, so that the keyboard color can be controlled.

Awesome! Tell me what to do 🙂

Okay, here we go. I found this link after hours of searching, and it did almost work for me. Something that I noticed later, is that the guide only works if the kernel parameters acpi_osi=! and acpi_osi=Linux are enabled. No worries, follow me.

Requirements

I recommend to use the latest stable kernel. How to upgrade Ubuntu kernel.

Instructions

Before you start, make sure that you selected Extensions Software Controlled under BIOS advanced settings.

Open a terminal window (CTRL+ALT+T) and execute the following command:


sudo nano /etc/default/grub

Now, search for ‘GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT‘ and append ‘ acpi_osi=! acpi_osi=Linux’ (without quotes) into the current value, possibly after ‘quiet splash’.

Once you did this, do the follwing using your keyboard:

To save the file: CTRL+X, Y, ENTER

Now, update your grub file and reboot.


sudo update-grub
reboot

Changing the identity might be required in order to use the clevo-xsm-wmi application.

Set default colour

Set default brightness

After the restart, you should be able to control your backlight! If not yet, please don’t worry yet. Try to shutdown your laptop completely and startup again. If you still have no luck, or if you want to get even more control over your backlight, please hold on.

Download the clevo-xsm-wmi repository from TUXEDO Computers (thank you guys).

To the repository

Once the repository finished downloading, extract the package, rename the package to ‘rgbcontrol‘ (without quotes) and go into the folder rgbcontrol/module. There is a file listed here, it’s called ‘clevo-xsm-wmi.c‘. Open it with a text editor and find;

– Your laptop model. If you don’t know your laptop model, open a Terminal window (CTRL+ALT+T) and execute:


sudo dmidecode

Scroll all the way up and your laptop model (product name) is mentioned there.

Is your laptop model not in the list? Then replace one by your laptop model! Replace:

– ‘Clevo P95_HP’, if you have RGB keyboard only without bar light at the front of the laptop.
– ‘Clevo P870DM’, if you have RGB keyboard with bar light at the front of the laptop.

, by your laptop model product name.

Open a Terminal window again (CTRL+ALT+T), execute the following code.


cd Downloads
cd rgbcontrol
cd module
sudo apt install gcc make
make
sudo make all


Ignore the errors

sudo insmod clevo-xsm-wmi.ko sudo make all


Ignore the errors

sudo install -m644 clevo-xsm-wmi.ko /lib/modules/$(uname -r)/extra sudo depmod sudo tee /etc/modules-load.d/clevo-xsm-wmi.conf <<< clevo-xsm-wmi sudo update-initramfs -uk all

The clevo-xsm-wmi application is installed now. Let's set a default colour! This default color is set on startup. You can choose 'white white white', for example. Other colors you can set: green, red, blue, yellow, magenta, cyan. You can also set the keyboard brightness. Just select your preference on the left side of this page and copy-paste the code below!


sudo tee /etc/modprobe.d/clevo-xsm-wmi.conf <<< 'options clevo-xsm-wmi kb_color=white,white,white, kb_brightness=1'

That’s it!

Are you tired of your old laptop?