Basic Minimal Apps for Librem 5

So the discussion about the chess app on the Librem 5 kind of has me thinking what everybody’s opinions would be on what are the minimal apps do you think need to be installed on the operating system when you receive a new Librem 5?

Certainly a page or three can be added to the box with a list of all apps known to function perfectly fine that provide common/basic needs can be provided, perhaps even with a link to instructions on where/how to install them, such as the PureOS store.

Perhaps this could provide a fairly clean OS that the end-user can literally personalize to their own liking? Thoughts?

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Well, to be more convenient to the non-regular gnu/Linux user, maybe looking at what is provided by default on other smartphones, Android or Ios based
Lots of people are used to those OS, the more Librem5 provides the default app provided by those OS, the less they will feel something is missing by default


True, and at the risk of making things more difficult for Purism, they could have a clean OS and one with all the usual apps included?

Does it really add much? They already don’t pre-install very many apps so it’s already pretty minimal and unlike Android you can remove anything you don’t want anyway (OK you might need a little command line familiarity and it could be made a bit easier, but it’s not prevented in any way)

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Sure but even now you can uninstall the metapackage and just install it’s individual component packages yourself if you want?

Will they be reinstalled each time there is a OS update?

Shouldn’t be

Quoting from @linmob’s blog post:

The number of preinstalled apps is small: Calls, Chatty (SMS+XMPP), Contacts, GNOME Web (which is surprisingly fast on the Librem 5) are joined by Calculator, Chess (why?),Clocks, Geary (for email), PureOS Store (for Updates and additional Software), Settings, Terminal, Text Editor, Usage and Weather.

Immediately notable omissions are a media and/or music player, a calendar, a Maps app, and considering the promises of the 2017 crowdfunder any Matrix support. As the hardware enablement for the Librem 5’s cameras is yet to happen, the omission of a camera app makes perfect sense.

I agree here. But I’d expect that to change anyway. At some point, I’d expect a preinstalled camera app, a video player, audio player.
I think, Chatty is supposed to support Matrix soon. See here.

Maybe even add SuperTuxKart (or other 3D game), mainly to showcase what the L5 is capable of.
Kyle mentioned that would increase the image substantially. My suggestion would be to not include it in nightly/development images, but for the OEM images I think it would be worth it, as it looks more “inviting” if you receive a device with a few more things readily available.


I was only referencing some of the comments where folks wanted chess removed, and didn’t seem to like being ‘force fed’ apps with the OS, relating it to apple and android and what they do. I personally don’t mind all the basics, but would rather leave game choices to the end users.

On the other hand, if they are easily deleted, and can be reinstalled if/when the end user wants, then no big deal. Apparently there is an issue trying to delete the chess game though?

Uninstalling metapackage does not automatically remove its individual components. It just marks them up as, for lack of better word, unneeded, and apt will suggest to remove them every time it sees them.

This can be fixed by telling apt to install them again. It will then say that they are already installed and mark them as manually installed and stop nagging about them.

A bit of a hassle indeed, but far from inability to remove an app altogether.


I think the list of pre-installed apps should be minimal. It shouldn’t include any Facebook not Twitter apps unless the program is primarily used to access other open source platforms and just happens to also work on Facebook or Twitter. The app store should be big. So the phone owner starts with a clean slate and you install only what you want, without leaving behind junk from previously installed apps.