IBM ThinkPad ThinkLight

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White LED ThinkLight on a ThinkPad A21p Laptop
Closeup of the light

ThinkLight is a keyboard light present in most ThinkPad families of notebook computers.

The series was originally designed by IBM, and then developed and produced by Lenovo since 2005.


A white or yellow LED (depending on model) is located on the top edge of the display, illuminating the keyboard to allow use in low-light conditions. It is activated with the key combination Fn-PgUp (the bottom left and top right keys of the keyboard). Newer ThinkPads use the combination Fn-Space instead. Sometimes this shortcut is also used in conjunction to control a backlit keyboard (if the laptop has it). The on-screen display of ThinkPad computers will display a light on and a light off indicator. The ThinkLight can be activated when the monitor is on or off but not while the PC is off.

Some ThinkPads, like the Z and R series (though not all - some R61 and R32 models still have the white light) feature an amber (yellow) LED due to the lower cost, while other models, like the T series, use a white LED (which is generally preferred).[1]

The G series and SL series omit the ThinkLight.


The HP EliteBook series notebooks contain a similar keyboard light called HP Night Light. Unlike the ThinkLight, it is activated by a physical button next to the Night Light, rather than a keyboard shortcut.

The Dell Latitude ATG series laptops have also contained a pair of red LEDs which are controlled in a very similar way to the IBM ThinkLight and also serve to illuminate the keyboard.

Some computer manufacturers have opted for keyboards back-lit by fiber-optics. Notebooks with this feature include the Dell Studio and Latitude series, some HP EliteBooks and some HP Envy models, and the Apple MacBook Pro and MacBook Air.[2] Some recent ThinkPads included both the ThinkLight and an illuminated keyboard, and the most recent models no longer include the ThinkLight.

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