How much can we customize the Librem5


I’m doing that from the very start. I’ve always preferred KDE to Gnome.


So, so far (and I’m not judging the choices, just the extent, compared to the original question):

  • code your own
  • replace OS
  • replace GUI
  • replace compositor
  • replace launcher
    … but no thoughts on modification and user experience options of look and feel. May have to wait until virtual-images get more ready or even for Aspens to know more…?


good subject. i think the potential is as great as Freedom is since anybody who orders the L5 practically OWNS it (the parts that aren’t binary only). this means that the user OWNS any aspect that he/she has acces to source-code and hardware documentation (if that code and documentation is copyleft licensed or better yet GPL-ed - is legally protected by the FSF and ensured to remain in the public domain “forever”)

now things only get better since there is a whole market waiting to happen for customising L5 like devices professionally (for anybody who can afford to pay for someone else to do it for them if they aren’t sufficiently tech savy to do so themselves) it’s kinda like interior-design services only more “personal” :wink:

the “downside” to this freedom is ofc the fact that it can get “hairy” when all the variety starts to “get-in-the-way” of education since any “too-customised” mspcd (mobile-smart-personal-compute-device) will be a pain to understand or relate to. try following a super customised Blender GUI tutorial :wink:


From my POV (someone tried to contribute to phosh but failed). Modularizing and modifying phosh at this stage is too difficult. Unlike KDE and Gnome, most of phosh’s code is undocumented. And the fact that GTK, GTKMM and libhandy has little to none (comparing to Qt/QML) document doesn’t help either.

Maybe we should start by documenting everything?


" thunder only happens when it’s rainin’ / players only love you when they’re playin’ " Fleetwood Mac - Dreams


Offtopic: Phosh on PostmarketOS (usually Plasma) actually seems to be a thing. (added video at very bottom of Chronology).
Not sure if they just want to have choice or like the Wayland-only ways of Phoc.

OTOH, I’m not sure if Plasma mobile will be available in PureOS right away.

Same on Desktop for me, but Gnome 3 always felt like mobile to me and I like what Purism is doing, so they might convert me for mobile :wink:
It also seems likely that Phosh will initially work much better.

Not many things will be customizable in the first months. I expect most-requested things to be added, and if somebody makes a nice patch/pull-requst, Purism will likely say yes.


For reference (I have done this). I can build a fully usable clock app in Qt/QML by RTFM in a few hours, but I’ll be lucky to learn how to get libhandy cooperating with gtkmm in a day.


@reC @JR-Fi Slightly out of topic. Would you be interested if I started a project documenting the L5, GTK and making reference/learning apps?


I would be curious at least. At this point (or soonish), it would be nice [hint to admins, hint] to start the L5 wiki. Not much yet to contribute, but community could at least try to come up with topics and questions to answer and a proper information architecture (“logical table of contents”).
@david.boddie probably has some ideas on that front too…


I would be happy to start using the wiki on the developer documentation repository for things. I know that others have an opinion about where it would otherwise be hosted (within the Purism infrastructure). Suggestions are welcome. :smile:

There is also this wiki which has a slightly misleading name. I would be willing to rename it to something more general.


I’d be interested in this as well. I found the developer documentation for BlackBerry 10, and especially all the sample apps they provided extremely helpful in building apps (BlackBerry 10 also used Qt/QML for their UI). I’m not sure if something like this exists in any form yet but good documentation and sample/starter apps could really help get more devs building apps.


I got a 404 from the link. Have you set the repository to private?


Sorry, it should have been this URL. If that still doesn’t work then maybe I need to move it. Maybe try this link as well.


It works now! thanks. Sounds like a good location to start.


Shall I rename it, do you think? Maybe also change the purpose of it to being a “Community Wiki”?


I am thinking if we should have a “Developer’s Wiki” and a “Hacker’s Wiki” or just one community wiki. The former documenting how to make an app and the other documenting the internals of phosh, libhandy, etc… Or should we make a single huge wiki?

I’m assuming for now, L5 users are somewhat competent in Linux and programming. So, maybe we also need a wiki for ordinary users in the future?


The user documentation will hopefully cover the users’ initial needs, but I think one wiki is better than two that need to be merged later.

I will create a new wiki because, while I can rename the one I linked to, I can’t change its URL.


It’s hard to draw a line between the two. And end users should rarely have a need.
For them, official docs should suffice.
And when not, have the wiki well structured.


This is (my earlier mentioned) information architecture problem that should be addressed. I like the idea, that there is only one wiki (at least, it appears to be). BUT at the same time I would be very careful to lay down some rules on how info is grouped, presented and laid out, so that there is a consistent logic. With that, a good page should have the intro and user level stuff, then the additional info, the hacker info etc. the deeper it’s read. Good wiki also has well grouped hierarchical table of contents as well as well curated metadata/searchterms/tags/lables. If there are multiple wikis, you only create multiple sources to find info and upkeep.


OK, how does this wiki look? Can you view it, at least?