Librem 11 - No WLAN after reflash, and an unfortunate rant

Made the mistake of installing, then removing kde-plasma-desktop from my L11, only to lose all networking and my device believing it stuck in Airplane mode when I also told apt to autoremove.

Due to no indication of this as a watch-out in any forum post and the issue being completely diluted on the Internet with any semblance of good information to resolve, I re-flashed the device using this: Install PureOS · Wiki · Librem 11 / L11 Community Wiki · GitLab because there is zero formal and official documentation and guidance in how to reflash or restore the device through any official channel that doesn’t mandate a support ticket and waiting at least a day for an official response that would most likely just be lip-service. EDIT: Performing another reflash using this process, but disconnecting the USB-C LAN adapter before boot seems to have resolved the WLAN issue. More hokey-pokey fixes for the wiki.

Now I find myself with no WLAN connection, in addition to the already documented out-of-the-box audio issues discovered during the unboxing process. I'm about at my wits-end with this device after two weeks of usage as I am simply trying to use the device as intended.

I’ve used Linux variants for over 25 years and acknowledge the challenges that come with using an open OS that is also supposed to be hardened by Purism, but this would appear to be yet another instance of Marketing at Purism getting the best of product development teams and rushing a product to production before it is ready, while also de-prioritizing work that should be done while also struggling to resource the demand as the organization courts more investors.

The complete lack of official documentation and incomplete implementation and integration of the L11 across Purism’s product and support pages, which would also include providing stable and functioning build images for this device, are practically non-existent.

This leaves someone like me with only those tips and tricks recommended through forums that are not consistent, outdated, and mostly focused on the L5 platform. These two devices are not the same and this lack of consistency only makes things worse!

Dropping more than $1,000 on a device should entitle a consumer to something that functions 100% out of the box, not something that they are expected to help troubleshoot, develop, support and maintain in the name of Purism’s mission.

I understand Purism isn’t Samsung or Apple, but if you’re going to price your products similarly, you should hold yourselves to the same quality standards. I would have never paid this kind of money for a device, nor will I recommend or purchase more, had I known that it would be broken by default. Would you? Imagine if you paid someone $1000 to fix your car, but that in order to be able to drive your car, you would have to finish the job on your mechanic’s behalf before you could drive the car without crashing, and without the full documentation or knowledge in how to do all of those things! Does that seem right?

If that was to be expected and I should have read it in a TOS agreement somewhere, that’s on me.

Purism’s modification of Gnome’s pre-existing mess called “Phosh” - may be workable for a phone OS and the phone form-factor, but from what I have experienced is not so great for a tablet that also still wants to be a desktop, hence me trying Plasma to mitigate.

Gnome itself has just too many stupid maturity and capability issues that should(and are) native for any modern GUI in 2024. These maturity and capability issues are now made even more aggravating by the work done to lock it down and call it “Phosh” instead, again without any formal and official documentation from Purism to guide its users in what Phosh can and can not do. Garbage in, garbage out.

On a standard Linux OS build with Gnome these maturity shortcomings can be mitigated by using Gnome tweaks, but again, Phosh customization has made those unusable or at least incompatible without tinkering and tweaking beyond my level of patience, and once again, without any documentation or information made available by the vendor themselves to support us in understanding what can and cannot be done on the platform.

If Purism wants investors and supporters, maybe they should get their act together with everything they have marketed. This will build the trust and loyalty in the name of the movement and products they’re standing behind, and it should be supported by the hardware and software they’ve assured the public is worthy of their investment. As it is now, all I see is half-baked ideas reliant on hopes and dreams with the absolute minimum done to prove the hardware or software are worthy of investment.

Resourcing challenges are not your supporting community’s problem, its your problem Purism! Don’t make excuses in the name of your movement and expect us to compensate when we’re investing our own money. That’s just a easy cop-out and way to pivot the accountability back on the consumer.

That approach is acceptable for grassroots FOSS and I totally recognize this with the same passion, but this level of tolerance and understanding can not and should not be expected when money is exchanged unless it is formally agreed upon as part of some sort of legally-binding agreement.

Fix my tablet, and get your sh!t together Purism!

P.S. I will be more than happy to delete this post to mitigate tarnishing the image of Purism, if I can be proven wrong and my device can be made 100% functional, today.

1 Like

I hate Gnome. Gnome is not Libre from Fedora.

1 Like

This isn’t a response to your response. It was just funny reading your post and thinking that this is how I became a sysadmin. I got tired of Microsoft and Apple telling me how to use tools I bought and paid for so I went down the GNU rabbit hole and voila, sysadmin.

Realistically though, Purism can only support Phosh and any shenanigans beyond that is realistically out of scope of any company, no matter how large. Just try to get support from Microsoft … well for anything without shelling out cash. Again, not a comment on your comment, I just had a client recently struggle to get Office 365 support even though they pay for it because the people on the other end do not speak any English even when they do speak English.

It’s nonsense all the way down and all the desktop metaphors are nonsense ideas approximately 40 years out of date (especially gnome, dear lord almighty, have mercy on gnome devs souls). I just run a window manager and treat each application like a random tool in a nicely organised tool box and when I need to do x I bring up the 2 or 3 tools needed to do x and fiddle. Most of the time the tool I bring up is the terminal but it depends. This approach turns out to be no maintenance once you do two things:

  1. Tweak your window manager to your liking.

  2. Tweak your internal world view to accommodate the reality of not being a slave to someone elses world view.

1 Like

Completely agree. Its this “tweaking” that brings so many of us to Linux and its cousins, and running up against walled-gardens-in-the-making that makes it so frustrating.

I appreciate your response!


:+1: :cry: :sob:


Okay, mark your post as a solution.