My L5 first impressions

What works:

  • Actually using it as a phone (calling and messaging).
  • Networking and SSH over usb cable.
  • tmux, htop, mc, sudo, lsof, systemctl, and everything you expect from a linux distro, when using shell.
  • Synchronization of contacts and calendars with Nextcloud server (using tasks requires application which is not adapted to vertical touch display yet, but it’s usable).
  • Yubico authenticator with yubikey connected through usb works out-of-the-box.

Problems and suggestions:

  • It’s a bit annoying (and initially confusing) that notification area is opened by touching top bar, not by sliding a finger from the top of the screen.
  • Nextcloud integration doesn’t show any error if there are problems with server. I got an error message only when I tried to configure raw CalDav in Evolution, which led me to fixing the problem. (For the record: the error was “No ‘Authorization: Basic’ header found” and solution was to uncomment in nginx “fastcgi_param HTTPS on;”)
  • After every network reconnection there are 2 notifications about webdav access to nextcloud in Files app. They are annoying and I cannot disable them.
  • SIM card pin is entered using normal keyboard, not on a dial pad like screen lock. It breaks my muscle memory.
  • Keyring is not unlocked together with screen lock after booting (I set the same password for both).
  • Setting up Polish language required running sudo dpkg-reconfigure locales.
  • In contacts, longer values are ellipsed with “…” and only option to see them whole is to enter editing.
  • No way to configure sounds for ringtone, notifications, alarms.
  • No separate volume controls for apps, notifications, calling. On my other android phone I have loud notifications with apps muted (and I unmute them, when I want them them).
  • I cannot quickly change volume by holding volume button.
  • When touching sms notification, app shows whatever I was recently looking at, not the message that arrived.
  • When alarm rings, I cannot turn it off, without unlocking screen.
  • No gps receiver on/off control in notification area (gps receiver AFAIK usually eats a lot of power).
  • The Maps application is terrible at pinch gestures. I removed it in favor of PureMaps from flathub.
  • Touching mobile connection indicator in notification area should turn on/off mobile internet. If I wanted to disable mobile modem completely, I’d use hardware switch.
  • Monitor app consumes too much of cpu by itself.
  • In Clock app: if I have an alarm with a name and selected days of a week, entering editing clears those settings, that even cancelling edition leaves those cleared.
  • Weather app doesn’t remember manually selected location.
  • No automatic “do not disturb” based on time.
  • “Night light” in screen settings seems to have no effect.
  • Trying to add Librem One online account shows TLS connection error.
  • Default apps that have problems fitting on screen:
    • Calendar
    • Clock
    • Backups
    • Files
    • Maps
    • Pictures
    • PureOS Store
    • Settings, when entering some submenus, like notification settings for specific apps.

3rd-party apps:

  • The Nextcloud desktop app by default lives in tray, but there is a way to force it, to show when launching from apps menu: In file ~/.config/Nextcloud/nextcloud.cfg add

  • Waydroid fails to start:

What I haven’t done yet:

  • Send an email, signed with PGP key on smartcard.

For those who are confuse with the tapping top bar, the sliding bar is a work in progress :wink:

If I’m not mistaken, it has been broken recently, and I think they need a upstream update of the Linux kernel to make it work again
EDIT found it :



I commented on the same issue here: Librem 5 — painpoint assessment 2021 You might want to review that entire topic.

Not sure about that one but I think you need to do more than just set the same password. (?Needs PAM config and the right thing to be installed?) I expect this is just a gap at the moment.

Whether it is at all desirable from a security point of view to do this is another question. I myself would not do this. Just sayin’

I believe that you can do this but there is no user-friendly GUI for it. This is a known gap. In my opinion, this is something that should be fixed.

Known behaviour. Well ventilated already. e.g. Librem 5 — painpoint assessment 2021


@guido.gunther recently tooted that he is working on fixing this:

If you selected the Polish language and keyboard in the original setup wizard, then this shouldn’t have been necessary. I am guessing that you selected some other language and keyboard. However, it would be nice to have an option in Phosh to add additional locales. You should file a Phosh issue report about that.

You should file issue reports about the things that bother you on the L5. In my experience, the L5 devs take our feedback seriously, so it is worth taking the time to file issue reports. If is part of the fun of being early adopters that get to test a new system. :slight_smile:


I could not select Polish language, because it was not on the list. Only after dpkg-reconfigure it appeared in language settings.


This is the sort of thing that boosts my anxiety level when running some GUI for the first time. It is especially nerve wracking when some OS config GUI does it.

More issues, now with headphones:

  • there’s a hissing sound, which starts when there’s any sound played and stops shortly after there’s silence.
  • The volume of Lollypop player is ear-rupturing. I could listen on max 10% of system volume. Fortunately in sound settings there’s an option to limit volume of a single application.
  • The headphones that were in the box with L5 have 3 buttons on the cable, which do nothing.
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