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Thread: Can't get fingerprint login to work on my ThinkPad

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Bonn, Germany

    Default Can't get fingerprint login to work on my ThinkPad

    Hi Geekos!

    I own a rather recent Lenovo ThinkPad 13 where I happen to be unable to log in using the built in fingerprint reader (on TW, Gnome). I got fprintd, libfprint and fprintd-pam installed from the repos. I used Gnome's user menu to register my fingerprint, and it finished with a green tick and "finished", not indicating any wronggoing.
    My fingerprint reader is a Validity VFS5011 which should be well supported on Linux:

    # lsusb -v
    Bus 001 Device 004: ID 138a:0011 Validity Sensors, Inc. VFS5011 Fingerprint Reader
    Couldn't open device, some information will be missing
    Device Descriptor:
      bLength                18
      bDescriptorType         1
      bcdUSB               1.10
      bDeviceClass          255 Vendor Specific Class
      bDeviceSubClass        17 
      bDeviceProtocol       255 
      bMaxPacketSize0         8
      idVendor           0x138a Validity Sensors, Inc.
      idProduct          0x0011 VFS5011 Fingerprint Reader
      bcdDevice            0.78
      iManufacturer           0 
      iProduct                0 
      iSerial                 1 
      bNumConfigurations      1
      Configuration Descriptor:
        bLength                 9
        bDescriptorType         2
        wTotalLength           46
        bNumInterfaces          1
        bConfigurationValue     1
        iConfiguration          0 
        bmAttributes         0xa0
          (Bus Powered)
          Remote Wakeup
        MaxPower              100mA
    On GitHub, all I could find is that the code should be in upstream.
    My fingerprint-authentication should be enabled in gdm:

    # gsettings list-recursively org.gnome.login-screen
    org.gnome.login-screen fallback-logo ''
    org.gnome.login-screen disable-user-list false
    org.gnome.login-screen allowed-failures 3
    org.gnome.login-screen enable-smartcard-authentication true
    org.gnome.login-screen banner-message-enable false
    org.gnome.login-screen enable-password-authentication true
    org.gnome.login-screen disable-restart-buttons false
    org.gnome.login-screen logo '/usr/share/gdm/greeter/images/distributor.svg'
    org.gnome.login-screen enable-fingerprint-authentication true
    org.gnome.login-screen banner-message-text ''
    However, if I swipe my finger over the reader on the gdm login page, nothing happens. Even a query in logind for either "finger" or "fprint" has zero results.

    What am I doing wrong? Am I forgetting something?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Bonn, Germany

    Default Update: Can't get fingerprint login to work on my ThinkPad

    In the meantime, I learned that at least in some occasions, an encrypted /home directory might be a difficulty to set up fprintd. Does anyone know details?
    At least, if I log in, and lock the screen, try to log in again, I get a journalctl error message:
    gdm-fingerprint pam_warn(gdm-fingerprint:auth): function=[pam_sm_authenticate] flags=0 service=[gdm-fingerprint] terminal=[/dev/tty2] ruser=[<unknown>] rhost=[<unknown>]
    (to be honest, that is of little help to me).
    Can some one here provide further insights?


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