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Backlight not working in Kubuntu 21.04

This entry was posted on Jun 02 2021

It seems that (at least for me) that a new install of Kubuntu (and probably Ubuntu) doesn’t recognise the backlight hardware or keypress on Lenovo X1 Carbon laptops (mine is gen 5).

Xev doesn’t recognise the keystrokes of either the brightness up XF86MonBrightnessUp, brightness down XF86MonBrightnessDown and an attempt to change manually with xbacklight -dec 10 returns an error No outputs have backlight property.

However just creating the following file with these contents resolved both issues:

/etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/20-intel.conf

Section "Device"
          Identifier  "card0"
          Driver      "intel"
          Option      "Backlight"  "intel_backlight"
          BusID       "PCI:0:2:0"
  EndSection

After that you’ll need to logout and back in to restart X. Hopefully this helps the next person.

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