Lenovo's 25th anniversary Thinkpad corrects years' worth of wrong turns

ThinkPad keyboards are very cheap online and quite easy to replace (though the newer backlit ones are not quite as cheap). Why suffer with a wonky one?

As all my machines (including the desktops) have trackpoints, there’s no nostalgia.


Some Thinkpads have easily replaced keyboards. At least a couple years ago, the x2n0 line certainly didn’t. I seem to recall the procedure starting with disassembling everything including the motherboard so you could get in from the back…

(which is a good thing, given Lenovo’s penchant for preinstalling spyware on the stock OS).

So why are you supporting them by buying anything at all from them. They been caught three times.


I don’t like the trackpoint but sometimes I use it just because the trackpads are so terrible. I wish some PC maker would just outright copy the trackpad from a Macbook.

I normally just carry a bluetooth mouse with me.


Well AFAIK they don’t install it on the business class machines and it and the dell latitudes are as solid and sturdy a laptop you can get short of a toughbook.

1 Like

Because they’re not user-servicable. Swapping a keyboard involves removing dozens of screws, demounting many components, peeling off single-use insulation tape, etc. I could use the warranty to get a replacement (that’s what I’ve done in th epast), but I don’t have a free day to hang around the house any time soon.

It’s actually quite easy on my X220, just a few screws and pop off the keyboard connector.

Accessing the mSATA/mPCIE slots is where it gets annoying, as you have to remove the keyboard, then a further 5 screws to remove the wrist-rest (dealing with the touchpad and fingerprint reader cable too) but thats still relatively easy.
Changing the HDD just takes one screw (well 5 if you include the non-essential caddy)


People are debating the correct name for the pointing device but haven’t posted the relevant XKCD? Is that not a thing any more?


It certainly isn’t a one-screw swap (like on some of the T4x0 machines), but it isn’t that hard; I’ve done an X250, which has the same keyboard. Unscrewing/removing components is not a big deal (as long as you have a manual and some good way of keeping track of the screws), the hassle on many machines is interlocking plastic (which can break) or anything involving the display panel. Neither of these is an issue with the X270 keyboard.

However, if the machine is still under warranty and the repair is not deemed user-serviceable then of course don’t do it; the warranty is probably the most valuable part of a ThinkPad.

The new/retro TP will be bigger and 50% heavier than your X270, if that’s a consideration. (T models often don’t fit in hotel safes.) The recent X series machines are great for travel. I do wish they’re bring back the butterfly keyboard so that we could have small machines with full-size keyboards. (Possibly IBM didn’t pass rights to that keyboard to Lenovo when they sold them the company.)

1 Like

Hell, I can’t even use smart phones. Takes me forever to either dial a number or talk someone into doing it for me. I moan my body electric.

1 Like

Limited number. Meh.
Not going to get one, then.
And just when I thought my toughbook would be probably worth retiring after a decade of use.

It’s the main reason why I haven’t moved away from Thinkpads. I hate using touchpads.


It is officially called TrackPoint. For a short time, IBM allowed Dell to put them on some of their laptops but that didn’t seem to last very long. It takes a bit of getting used to, but for me, anything is better than a touchpad.


Unfortunately it will still come pre-infected with Intel’s hardware rootkit (IME), the article made no mention of specific Linux support, and until proven otherwise, I’m going to have assume that this is just a T470 with a superior keyboard and a nicer graphics chip. That means any upgrades or part replacements will involve spudgers and prying tools and dealing with plastic clips that can and will break.

Sure would be nice if that POWER8 laptop idea got off the ground, but even if it did, the price is going to be so astronomical that almost no one will buy it. Well, that, and the fact that most people are seriously uninformed on how awesome the POWER architecture has gotten. I’d suggest that maybe Apple would pick it up again, but they’ve long since stopped caring about being a performance leader, user serviceability, and your privacy. (Microsoft isn’t any better, of course, if anything they’re chasing Apple down that pit of dystopia, and gaining on them. Windows 10 is borderline offensive.)

It would only count as “nostalgia” if I had ever stopped using a trackpoint, right?


Ditto. I drag around a wireless mouse with me everywhere I go with my laptop. But the nubbin pointer beats the shit out of the touchpad.

1 Like

That’s not the point. The point is denying them business because they have proven themselves to be a bad actor. That’s like saying it’s OK to bank at Wells-Fargo because didn’t cheat and defraud their business customers, only the little guys. (I don’t know if they cheated their business customers or not. It’s only an example to make a point.)

@doctorow No thank you.

Look at that antiquated thing. Takes me back 10, 20 years.

sort of a mini joystick.


Has this ever been a thing, or do you mean 16:10 which is the closest to a 3:2 aspect ratio? I am aware of monitor aspect ratios of 4:3, 16:9, 16:10 (or 8:5), 21:9, and in very rare cases 5:4.

16:10 is the closest to the golden ratio, which might explain why I prefer it to 16:9. More practically, it’s because of either too much loss of vertical resolution or too much of the screen being in peripheral vision.