Librem 15/13 v5 features and requests

I came across this post on reddit with some interesting comments from @MrChromebox (assuming the same user) about the v4 release and what may be in the pipeline for the v5 slated to come our this summer.

USB-C power cable. yes please! It would appear that this could be a possible feature introduced allowing any compatible power-brick to be used. It raised a lot of interest on the reddit posts too.

LED power next to charging cable socket - this was a featured I requested earlier and I am not sure if it has been implemented yet on the v4.

Dual dimm RAM slots - the reddit discussion points to a new MB being designed which will have dual dimm slots.

Flush USB sockets - as I initially reported on my feedback/review of my Librem 15v3, maybe this is already fixed on v4?

Arrow keys with reliefs - this would allow to easily access the right/left arrow key without looking down to the keyboard…I keep hitting the # 1 key on the numerical keys when trying to kind the right arrow key.

Functional home/end keys - currently I am unable to have the home/end navigation on a text line in an editor. I reported this here earlier, and never found a solution to this problem.

Better battery management ? I faced some issues with my battery management (especially at low capacity) and finally have to follow this advice to manually ensure longevity. My first battery only lasted 1 year. However, from my past experience with macbooks, I have been able to have a relatively care-free attitude towards the charging (the computer would hibernate when low on juice) and the battery lasted 3 years before I had to change it. It is really difficult to achieve this with a librem?


on librem 15: a good keyboard, localized when necessary, AND including a numeric pad, which is important in a professional context. A good mouse pad also.

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Judging by the amount of dirt accumulated over last 3 years on the numeric pad section of my keaboord at work - I’m not a pro :slight_smile:

But please do nice regular-size arrow keys.


Is a quad-core CPU too much to ask for?


I’m in the market for a new laptop, and hoping to future-proof as much as possible. All of these suggestions are good, and I’d like to add my own.

  • USB-C is a must, and Thunderbolt is highly desirable. I’m not sure how compatible TB3 is with the requirements on Openness, but I’d love to plug into an external GPU with an Open driver. The Librem 15 having no discrete GPU is a selling point for me, but sometimes I want more graphics power.

  • I’d give up the number pad just to have the trackpad centered in the body. I’ve never used the number pad on any laptop, but I use the trackpad constantly.

  • 4 cores, 8 threads, aggressive cooling. Gotta run VMs and… render webpages.

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Same - I would gladly strongly prefer a more centered keyboard. The keypad is not valuable to me, and the price have having keys I don’t need/want is an ugly off-centered trackpad. uggh…

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I strongly disagree with you here (but it might be because I only use AZERTY keyboard and really don’t want to have to press shift all the time I want a number, and on Linux it’s very frequent), I really can’t do much things without the keypad and when I’m using Linux based systems I tend to use it way more (mostly for passwords)(than on Windows where no one ever puts a password even if it’s dumb), it’s such a lifesaver that I just can’t do without it.

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I thought of what “I” would want in a Purism laptop and here are my thoughts.

CPU: Quad core preferred.
Screen: 15", matte, has to be PWM free, the higher resolution the better (for me) for writing text/code. I realize it’s a bit much to ask for but it’s a shame 16:10 isn’t thing on laptops anymore.
GPU: I realize it’s hard but it would be better at some point if we could have a libre GPU implementation then Intel graphics, but I’ll put it with it if I have too.
Ethernet port: Yes

Also probalby impossible but I wish a libre implementation of Thunderbolt was possible. Hook up a 10GbE NIC directly to your laptop :slight_smile:

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I would want to keep the 10key numeric pad.

What I would like to see changed are:

  1. More RAM.

  2. Support for GPUs.


which ones ? the dedicated external ones from AMD/nVidia that you can currently buy for gaming/pro markets are ALL blacker-than-cpu-boxes.

out of them all for gnu/linux AMD seems to be the best option unless you start thinking linux-libre-style. then it’s suicide by train or just a librem laptop with an igpu like what we now have.

things are kind-of bleak in regards to GPUs atm.

Hi all,
I’m here for a replacement of my MacBook Pro 13" and finally switch back to Linux.

What I need / would like to have for doing the big switch:

  • 2 USB-C slots with charging capability (and ideally TB3), one on each side
    • Having one slot on each side is really convenient because you can use the one that is closest to the power socket for charging the computer and the other one for charging your phone without making too much mess and bending cables.
  • Quad core CPU
    • seems like all other 13" laptops come at least with a quad core option, so why not the Librem?

What else? A quick release date :slight_smile:


I would love a track point on the v5 librems. The lack of track point is the reason I haven’t bought one yet.

Its so much nicer not having to move your hand about when using the cursor. I would even pay extra for it if it was made an extra feature and a lot of other people would too.

There’s a whole crowd of people that can’t move away from thinkpad for this reason.

Dang, I was just getting ready to buy the v4.

USB-C Power Cable might be worth the wait.
Always seem to have issues with the standard AC power cables.

How practical is this happening soon?

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So far, it seems shipping of new revisions began roughly at the beginning of the year.
I would expect the v5 spring 2020.


You will probably have to wait long enough for this.
All other brands (Apple,HP,Lenovo,Dell) support USB-C charging for all their recent lineups.
Also, it’s worth to wait for a quad core CPU and not an ultrabook 2-core version from 2016 which is
now shipped in v4. Any slight CPU intensive task or firing up a few VMs in Qubes will make you
think you have a drone on your desk, not a workstation class laptop.

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“workstation” while talking about Pursim - CONSIDERING free software/hardware limitations (igpu/firmware/power consumption) means they don’t apply into the same definition as bellow - to which many manufacturers adhere to.
since you required a wikipedia page here it is

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The battery management I feel is something that can really be improved, here is another thread of recent problems I have faced.

@nicole.faerber I know your attention is focused on the librem 5 , but is there any chance we can better battery management on the future laptops bucketlist?

check :slight_smile:

Yes, we are ware that this is a major pain point - not only for our customers but also for us. One of the major obstacles here is that the handling of the battery is buried in the embedded controller (EC) and it is really tough to get any internal information from the manufacturers about this, not even talking about source code. Additionally, believe it or not, many people simply even do not understand proper battery management - and it can really be very difficult! I remember working on a project with an embedded ARM device where the customer wanted very precise battery gauging. This work went on over months and sincerely became critical with the customer threatening to pull out from the deal if we do not manage to do it properly, We (at that time I was working for another embedded Linux company) had a really hard time to explain to them why what they wanted was plain impossible.

Anyway, back to Purism laptops, yes, we have this even pretty high on our bucket or wish list for supplier negotiations but I can not say (yet) when we will such improvements.



wow, thanks for the info, no wonder there is so many issues with other Linux powered laptops batteries. Googling my problem revealed a slew of other users with similar issues on very varied laptops.

I will pray that you may come across a battery manufacturer willing to go open-source :wink:

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to be more exact what you speak of is free-software. open-source is what you can already achieve with ubuntu on proprietary hardware. the linux kernel might be open-source and the driver-module comunicating with the firmware but the firmware itself is close source and the manufacturers also don’t provide documentation to properly reverse-engineer > free-software > open-hardware