Slimbook AMD Controller app

Rocking an AMD Ryzen mobile CPU? If so, check out a new AMD Controller app from Spanish Linux computer company Slimbook.

“The Slimbook AMD Controller app is capable of setting several TDP power levels for your AMD Ryzen mobile processor,” they say of the tool. “Switching between the different performance presets will give you the ability to control both performance and battery life with a single click.”

The app comes with a basic desktop app and an accompanying indicator menu (the latter letting you switch power profile on the fly). Although you may be tempted to use the higher performance level all the time remember that increasing the power draw will make your processor run hotter (cue fan noises) and drain your battery faster.

screenshot of Slimbook AMD Controller indicator applet
Quick switch menu

There are a few things I don’t know, like which specific series of AMD Ryzen processors this tool is compatible with. And as it’s currently only packaged for Ubuntu 20.04 LTS I can’t test it on my Ryzen laptop (it runs 21.04).

Also unknown is this app’s license. It’s not (presently) listed on the Slimbook GitHub, which is where most of their other open source projects live. Slimbook do say that this tool leverages other open source projects, including RyzenAdj. Source code can be downloaded from Launchpad, however.

If you’re looking for an easy way to change power management settings for AMD Ryzen mobile processors, take a look and see if it suits your needs.

Install Slimbook AMD Controller

You can currently install Slimbook AMD controller on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS only (the tool is not currently packaged for other builds).

To install it, open a new Terminal window and run this command to add the Slimbook PPA to your list of software sources:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:slimbook/slimbook

Then run this command to install the Slimbook AMD Controller app:

sudo apt install slimbookamdcontroller

Then reboot your system. Oh, I know: it’s a minor hassle, but doing so helps ensure all of the pieces slot in and works as intended.

Finally, launch the app and configure from there. You have options to run the tool at login, enable or disable the indicator applet, and three power settings to choose from:

  • Low: Sets a low TDP that can greatly improve battery life, however performance is reduced.
  • Medium: Balanced TDP giving you good performance and good battery life.
  • High: Unlock the power your CPU has to offer, but keep an eye on CPU temps and battery life.
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