Ubuntu – Lenovo ThinkPad 11e Randomly Freezes on Ubuntu 16.04

16.04intelkernellenovothinkpad

I have a Lenovo ThinkPad 11e (with the Intel chipset not the AMD), that used to experience freezes randomly under 14.04 which have persisted after a clean install of 16.04.

Description of the freezes that occur:

  • Screen freezes in place with no distortion
  • Hardware buttons become unresponsive (lights in the mute sound/mic keys no longer toggle when pressed)
  • A hard restart is the only way to fix the freeze
  • There is absolutely no warning before a freeze occurs, the system acts normally right up until it locks up

The issue seems to appear more frequently when I run anything related to Chrome/Chromium on my system (including stuff that uses the Electron framework, e.g. the Atom editor). But it will still occur even if nothing related to those is running. It also doesn't seem to be related to stress on the system because I can run Windows 10 in VMWare Workstation 12 without any issue.

I'm not even sure where I should begin looking in for clues as to what's causing the issue, so I was hoping someone here might have an idea. When the issue occurs the entire computer becomes unresponsive and I have to hard shut down. I'm not sure what logs would have any information related to a hard system freeze.

I have tried using linux-crashdump as suggested by Chris J Arges, but even after replicating my problem twice I have found no crash entries in /var/crash other than those from forcing a kernel crash to make sure it was working

Possibly relevant information:

  • The integrated Intel graphics show up as Intel Bay Trail (which I know has had some problems with Linux in the past)
  • I have upgraded the system to 8 GB of RAM (the issue occurred before this change as well)
  • My system has an SSD formatted to ext4 (the issue occurred using btrfs as well)
  • I have run multiple hardware diagnostic tests (both built-in BIOS tests and from bootable utilities), that have found no issues with my hardware

Best Answer

Try installing newer kernels. In some cases, it fixes the problem of freezing that caused by bad high precision timer code. This is binary for Linux 4.5.2:

http://kernel.ubuntu.com/~kernel-ppa/mainline/v4.5.2-wily/

Download appropriate 3 .deb binary packages, install them, and reboot to the new kernel. I hope this will fix your problm. By the way, Ubuntu 16.04 is alraedy out with a new kernel, so do a clean install (not an upgrade) and see if it fixes your problem.