Do Librem 13 and 15s come with Bluetooth

I don’t like it when someone breaches {,A}GPL especially when I am one of the contributors. That’s why I respect nonfree licenses and try to avoid things published under them. At what point does someone who disagrees with copyleft licenses accept? How is taking code from a GPL work and publishing it under a nonfree license different from reverse engineering or decompiling nonfree code and publishing it under GPL without permission?

Taking GPL work and publishing it under another license is a copyright infringment.

Publishing reverse-engineered code is something else. A license breach if you had to accept the license in order to get hold of the binary. Some other laws regarding reverse-engineering may apply. Not everywhere it is legal to reverse engineer just like that. Some jurisdictions require you to have a valid reason for it. (valid legally, not the same thing as morally justified).

Anyhow, those differences are immaterial to what I was saying (or attempted to say) before: A license only applies when you accept it. How and when you accept a license is a matter much more complicated than it should be. I’ll stop here and refer you to a lawyer.

My Bluetooth headphones work just fine with a fresh install of PureOS on my Librem 13 v3. The only trouble I have is they lose connection any time I switch from battery to AC power or vice versa. I don’t know what the blob is supposed to do, but I haven’t needed to install it yet.

Now it won’t recognize the Bluetooth capabilities. I guess my experience was an anomaly I cannot remake.


I’m sorry as I’m quite not an advanced user of Linux distribution, my question below may seem to be a bit ‘stupid’…

Using your link, how do i get and copy the all ‘ar3k’ folder. I cannot find any command for it.


The easiest way to get Bluetooth is to install all the proprietary Atheros firmware with these commands:
sudo dpkg -i firmware-atheros_20190114-2_all.deb

If you want to only install the proprietary firmware for the Atheros Bluetooth, you need to do it this way:
sudo apt install git
git clone
(Wait while it downloads 360MB)
cd linux-firmware
sudo cp -r ar3k /lib/firmware/

If you want to delete the 360MB that you downloaded:
cd ..
rm -r linux-firmware

@nicole.faerber, @mladen, @joao.azevedo,
In my opinion, these instructions should be added to


Official guides cannot explain how to get proprietary firmware if you want PureOS RYF certified.


Anyone see anything contradictory in that? :slight_smile:

True freedom includes the freedom to install proprietary, blackbox, potentially backdoored software?

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true freedom ALSO includes the freedom to do your own research somewhere else … :slight_smile:
if that research takes you to some other distribution’s wiki then that doesn’t mean you can’t apply said instructions retroactively in a RYF certified distribution … that being said PureOS is STILL a pure OS precisely because it’s NOT named FreedomOS :sweat_smile:

Why is that a question? Of course that is what freedom is about. It is YOUR hardware, and you can use it however you see fit.

Honestly, if this was not the case, I never would have bought a single Purism product.


My comment was more about the meaning of “respect your freedom”.

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Because it was an agrammatical continuation of the previous sentence. :wink:

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Thanks a lot amosbatto.
I went with your second option (installing only the firmware of the Atheros Bluetooth),
and it works perfectly fine now !


First of all, get the terminology right. The RYF certification is for hardware that runs on 100% free software, and the Librem 13/14/15/Mini will never get this certification because they contain microcode, FSP and 9% of the ME, which is proprietary. Purism is only trying to get RYF certification for the Librem 5 phone, not for its PCs. You may be right that the FSF won’t grant RYF certification for products that have official instructions on how to install proprietary software, but the RYF criteria page doesn’t explicitly say that.

However, we are not talking about the Librem 5 here (since its RS9116 doesn’t require proprietary firmware in the Linux file system to use Bluetooth).

The FSF officially endorses distributions that contain 100% free software, and PureOS has received that endorsement. It is an open question whether the FSF would have endorsed PureOS, if Purism had instructions on its web site how to install proprietary firmware. When I have asked the FSF questions like this in the past that are matters of interpretation, I haven’t received a reply.

Personally, I think that Purism should set up a general community wiki for all its devices (like it has for the Librem 5), where the community is encouraged to post “unofficial” documentation. I have answered questions on how to deal with WiFi/Bluetooth on Librem devices at least 3 different times, and this kind of information should be centralized somewhere, so we don’t have to keep repeating ourselves.


there are already distributions that are FAR better suited for this sort of hardware. such as Debian, Ubuntu, PopOS, Linux-Mint, Fedora, Suse and others that are more closely related to the LinuxFromScratch way of setting up an OS.

it’s my impression that the majority of people who want to put PureOS on non-open-hardware only do so out of masochism or to brag to their audience that they are running a “Pure” OS … there are legitimate exceptions though (as always)

This is an example of why we need a community wiki, so people can find info like this and we don’t have to keep explaining things on forums:

people will always keep asking about what they are interested in mainly on forums because they feel it’s more personal, direct and up-to-date that way and also because they want to relate to other ACTUAL people instead of just reading a community wiki that might very well be out-of-date or incomplete.

they also regularly post in multiple forums the SAME questions most of the time because … well … they ARE lazy/impatient :sweat_smile:

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And yet a wiki is a better more efficient way to help people than spamming the same questions ad nauseum. The personal convenience of someone asking a question is not a relevant concern when it is someone else whose help you need.

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I agree with @reC. There is a legitimate concern that a vast amount of information available on the internet about Linux is out of date, for the wrong distro, or both.

An ideal wiki (for a specific distro) would therefore have an indication of “release version last checked against” - but would need that to be backed by people putting in the time to recheck information periodically against new releases.


@nicole.faerber, could this challenge be of help for future Purism products if it succeeds?