Laptop Mode Tools – Laptop power saving package for Linux systems

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Laptop Mode Tools is a laptop power saving package for Linux systems. It allows you to extend the battery life of your laptop, in several ways. It is the primary way to enable the Laptop Mode feature of the Linux kernel, which lets your hard drive spin down. In addition, it allows you to tweak a number of other power-related settings using a simple configuration file.

Ubuntu has a laptop-mode-tools package, which is installed by default on laptops. However, laptop mode is disabled by default in Ubuntu Edgy (6.10), because some people have been experiencing hangups with it on certain laptops (mostly Thinkpads). Until now, nobody has any clue what is happening here. To reenable laptop mode, edit /etc/default/acpi-support and set ENABLE_LAPTOP_MODE=true.

If you want to use the latest version of laptop mode tools, you can use the Debian packages, they are compatible enough to work out-of-the-box on Ubuntu. In fact, I would definitely advise using these packages --- the Ubuntu packages are crippled so that some options don't work, the most notable of which are ENABLE_LAPTOP_MODE_ON_AC, ENABLE_LAPTOP_MODE_WHEN_LID_CLOSED and DISABLE_LAPTOP_MODE_ON_CRITICAL_BATTERY_LEVEL.

Install Laptop Mode Tools on ubuntu

Make sure you have a kernel that supports laptop mode. Any version starting from 2.6.6 should do, or any version that includes the file /proc/sys/vm/laptop_mode.

Now you need to download lastes version of .deb package from here

Once you have deb package you can install by double clicking on that or run the following command from your terminal

sudo dpkg -i laptop-mode-tools_1.47-1_all.deb

If everything went OK, laptop mode will be activated automatically the next time you unplug your laptop from the mains (except when you have an APM laptop). You can configure laptop mode tools using the config file, which is in /etc/laptop-mode/laptop-mode.conf. You can read more about the configuration options using

man laptop-mode.conf

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5 Responses

  1. MaTachi says:

    Great program which I use on my laptop with Arch Linux.

    But I wonder where “However, laptop mode is disabled by default in Ubuntu Edgy (6.10)” came from. 😀 Is anyone still using that version of Ubuntu? Is wasn’t even LTS.

  2. LoneStar says:

    This package conflicts with pm-utils on my laptop… Should I replace one with hthe other?

  3. Mike says:


    Won’t spinning down a laptop hard drive kill it?

  4. Chris says:

    I also have a conflict with pm-utils as well as the inability to standby. I just uninstalled laptop-mode-tools for now.

  5. k says:

    No, it’ll just stop rotating until it’s asked to start again … saves some power when you’re not reading files off the disk (also might save your drive from some damage if you suddenly knock your laptop – if the drive is spinning and you knock your laptop, the head can be knocked into the platter)

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