remove IR camera from lenovo on Ubuntu 20



my lenovo Thinkpad T480 has a built in IR camera that does some basic movement tracking and detection with some windows program, but on ubuntu it's mostly useless. Worse than that! it's set as the default camera which isn't helpful as it only renders a bright green output.


I only found one solution here. The idea is to create a config file specifically for the device to "detach" it and this config to the usb_modeswitch udev rules

Step by Step

  • find vendor and product id of camera
    birb@box: dmesg | grep 'Camera'
    [ 2.093051] usb 1-5: Product: Integrated IR Camera
    [ 3.104388] usb 1-8: Product: Integrated Camera
    [ 4.617796] uvcvideo: Found UVC 1.10 device Integrated IR Camera (5986:1141)
    [ 4.621236] uvcvideo 1-5:1.0: Entity type for entity Camera 1 was not initialized!
    [ 4.621300] input: Integrated IR Camera: Integrate as /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:14.0/usb1/1-5/1-5:1.0/input/input11
    [ 4.622344] uvcvideo: Found UVC 1.00 device Integrated Camera (5986:2113)
    [ 4.656120] uvcvideo 1-8:1.0: Entity type for entity Camera 1 was not initialized!
    [ 4.656206] input: Integrated Camera: Integrated C as /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:14.0/usb1/1-8/1-8:1.0/input/input12
  • create config file for this device that will detach driver from device
    birb@box: echo "echo DetachStorageOnly=1 > /etc/usb_modeswitch.d/5986:1141" | sudo zsh
  • open /lib/udev/rules.d/40-usb_modeswitch.rules and add these lines before the end to apply config on startup
    # IR Camera
    ATTR{idVendor}=="5986", ATTR{idProduct}=="1141", RUN+="usb_modeswitch '%k'"


make sure that you add == not =, an error in the rules will break the whole system and require looking for a usb key with and ubuntu image, booting from usb and looking everywhere to find where to fix your mistake (... ask me how I found that out)