L11: Charging from powerbank Anker A1281

I acquired long ago this powerbank Anker A1281 20000 mAh, USB-C and USB-A for my L5 (full description here after using translation in Chrome: https://www.chongdiantou.com/archives/43364.html to English). It charges fine the L5 with 5V and 1.x A

This is unable to charge the L11. The meter says only:
V: 9.30, A:0,02 Protocol PD WTK

With the charger which came with the L11 the meter says:
V: 11.31, A:2.30 Protocol PD

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Looks like the Anker A1281 supports for USB-C PD output the following options (in any case to a maximum output power of 18W):

  • 5V, to 3A
  • 9V, to 2A
  • 15V, to 1.2A

(Those are also seemingly its power input options when charging the powerbank.)

What is missing from Purism is a specification of what the power input requirements are for the Librem 11 (but it looks as if the Librem 11 wants much more power than the Anker A1281 can supply and at a different voltage).

Does the Librem 11 come with any documentation? There’s still nothing on the doco page for the Librem 11.

Also missing are the incantations for diagnosing (troubleshooting) what the negotiated power delivery is (when it works, or when it indeed doesn’t work).

It just goes to show the limitations of the EU’s move to mandatory USB-C charging. Not all USB-C is created equal. There will still be junked accessories and unnecessary purchases of accessories.


The L11 came with one page of paper showing how to attach the charger, where the powerbutton is and what the disk encryption code is.

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Less is more? :rofl:

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My L11 charges at 21+ watts including whatever the Purism supplied charger uses. Don’t know voltage or current.

(As guru noted, the supplied sheet of paper assumes everything about using the L 11 is intuitively obvious once you have the access code.)

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Librem 11 needs 12 V, at least 2.5 A (30 W). The Anker above appears to lack 12 V and also only provides about 18 W.


Thanks for the confirmation.

So … anyone buying either a USB-C charger or a USB-C powerbank for use with their Librem 11 … take those requirements into account!

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Just an fyi; I misplaced or some gremlin took my L11 charger, so I tried the L5 charger and it charges my L11, and seems charging as speedily as my L11 charger did so.
The data printed on my L5 charger is:
Model PD-014PTA
PD 3.0 Output: 5V — 3A or 9V — 2.22A or 12V —1.67A Total Output: 20W(max)

I received my L11 not to long ago, so maybe more efficient improvements made by the devs? :wink:

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There may be a difference between “charging” and “charging while running” but I am surprised by what you are reporting. If you still had the original charger, it would be good to see what the Librem 11 is negotiating with each charger and what current it is actually drawing in each case (when at the same starting point of level of charge).

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I am charging while using the L11 with the L5 charger :wink:


I may still have the original charger, but I actually do not know what it looks like ;-!!

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I have too many chargers…I think it is my fetish ::O-O


@emeljay Thanks for the information. I can’t use it at the moment or comment further on it because stupid I am I cracked the display of my L11.

I tested an external USB keyboard with my L5 during boot and I could enter the disk encryption code etc. fine. It does not work with my L11. I was hoping to be able to boot it without seeing anything on the display. Later SSH over Wifi should do fine. At least weeks ago it was fine. Then it run out of power :frowning:
Is there any other question on the screen before the L11 asks for the disk code?

Or is there any other procedure to enter into the L11 over the USB-C port?

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The charger changed slightly :slightly_smiling_face: PD-014 was only 12V, 1.5 A (18 W) which wasn’t enough for Librem 11.


It will boot to an external display if you have a USB-C dock or USB-C to DP/HDMI adapter, etc. Both USB-C ports support DP alt mode.

It should boot automatically if there are no problems during boot - I believe the inactivity timeout on the disk unlock prompt is 60 seconds before it shuts off, so there should be enough of a window to guess that it has probably reached that screen and enter the password before it shuts off. USB keyboards should work; the keyboard cover is USB.

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UPDATE: There is one more line for a second, I have had to do a movie to get it…

It says on boot:

Automatic boot in 5 seconds unless interrupted by keypress...

Attemting default boot...

Loading the new kernel:
kexec -l /boot/vmllinux-6.1.0-13-amd64 ... (rest not copied)
Starting the new kernel

(clear screen)

[     2.065922] simple-framebuffer simple-framebuffer.0: Unable to register simplefb: -16

(clear screen after 1 second)

stty: standard input : cannot perform all requested operations: No child processes

Then hangs a while and powers off.

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:man_facepalming: You’re right @guru , the firmware posts to the external display, but osk-sdl (graphical disk unlock prompt) does not.

osk-sdl comes up pretty quickly after the last line (stty: standard input: ...) appears on the external display on my device. You can type the passphrase then from a USB keyboard (keyboard cover or any other keyboard) and continue to boot.

Next, you’ll land on another black screen. That’s the login prompt, which is still on the internal panel. (If you have a mouse, you will be able to move the cursor over to the external display at this point.) Press Enter (selects the user), type your password and press Enter to log in.

Then you will get to the desktop, but the panel is still the primary display so you’ll just see the wallpaper. The best thing I found for this is to press Alt+F2 (“run” dialog), type gnome-control-center and press Enter, then use Super+Shift+Right to move it to the external display. Then you can disable the built-in display.

After that, you can disable osk-sdl from a terminal to get the regular Plymouth disk unlock, which does appear on an external display (but does not have a touchscreen keyboard, not a problem in your case).

  1. Edit crypttab: sudo nano /etc/crypttab
  2. Remove ,keyscript=/usr/share/initramfs-tools/scripts/osk-sdl-keyscript from the end of the line beginning with luks-
  3. Save and exit: Ctrl+O, Enter, Ctrl+X
  4. Update initramfs: sudo update-initramfs -u

@jonathon.hall , thanks for these hints. I will try to follow them, when time allows, and will let you know. A big thanks!


Can’t I just type the login ‘purism’ and the password ‘123456’ into the dark on the USB keyboard?

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Yes you can type in the dark, but you’re selecting the user from a list, so you just press ‘Enter’ for that rather than typing the user name.

So it’s ‘Enter’ (select user), ‘123456’ (password), ‘Enter’ (password).

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