Packaging effort to add support for fingerprint-based authentication to Ubuntu
To find out the ID of your fingerprint reader, run the “lsusb” command and look into the sixth column of the output.
Overview of open-source fingerprint recognition projects:
FPrint is the most recent and most advanced project (yet slightly dormant at the moment). It supports a wide range of hardware and sports a full integration into the GNOME desktop environment.
Packages are available at https:/
2. Fingerprint GUI
Fingerprint GUI is based on FPrint's shared library. Although it offers slightly less seamless GNOME integration, thanks to inclusion of non-free drivers it supports a number of readers manufactured by UPEK and not supported by FPrint. The design goal of Fingerprint GUI is to include as many available drivers as possible (even proprietary ones) and thus to gain a much wider range of supported hardware than any purely open-source project can achieve.
Supported readers: all devices supported by FPrint (see above) plus all UPEK devices, i.e., the following additional IDs:
Packages for fingerprint-gui are available at https:/
ThinkFinger is an abandoned project, supporting only reader 0483:2016, used in many IBM/Lenovo laptops. Obsoleted by the FPrint project.
Packages for ThinkFinger are included in the standard Ubuntu repositories.
Old & dead.
Support for other fingerprint readers
Users often ask how it is looking with support for readers not listed above. Here is the answer:
The FPrint project is not very active, and not many new drivers are being developed at the moment. Work has started on Validity VFS5011, and EgisTec 1c7a:0801, 1c7a:0803. There is no timeframe when these drivers will be ready (if ever).
For more details check out the upstream's mailing list at http://
Fingerprint GUI is happy to integrate any proprietary drivers that the manufacturers make freely available. Vendors that have promised to release drivers for Linux are:
• Validity (ETA Q4 2012, the driver should support VFS301, 5011, 5111 and 5131, in addition to VFS451, 471 and 491)
DigitalPersona released an SDK but it relies on a kernel-mode driver (see http://
Finally, AuthenTec (manufacturer of Authentec and UPEK devices) is happy to provide support to any open-source driver development efforts (see http://
For all the other readers you cannot expect any support in the near future.