New Post: My Top 10 Lapdock Kit Tips

Two years ago I started an experiment to see if I could replace my personal laptop with my Librem 5 with a lapdock (spoiler: I could). A year later I wrote a follow-up post that talks about my impressions of the Librem 5 and lapdock as a personal computer. Based on my two years’ experience using this set-up, and after evaluating a number of different lapdock options, we recently announced our own Lapdock Kit for sale. Based on the interest we have already seen, quite a few people are going to be using this set up, so I thought it would be useful for me to share some of my favorite tips for getting the most out of the Lapdock Kit.

Read the rest of the article here:


As most people are right-handers I wonder if it would be better if the USC-C port used for input would be on the nexdock’s right side. That way there would be no need cross the dock with the right arm. And it is surprisingly hard to use a touchscreen precisely with the left hand. At least for me. I guess it can be trained. That could be a possible proposal to improve the dock’s next generation.

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Something to consider if it were set up that way, is that by default display settings assume the primary screen is to the left of the secondary screen you attach. You can of course change that in display settings.

I hadn’t really considered the impact for someone who is extremely right-handed. When docked I interact with the L5 using my left hand, but I’m not really doing precision work in that case, just tapping an icon or possibly scrolling.

As a left-handed person who experiences many things against my natural ergonomics, I am personally very appreciative of the existing configuration. :wink:


Minor typo: “thicket” should be “thicker” or “thickest” I suppose.

(I don’t have this equipment but…) Can’t you just use a longer cable and mount it where you want it?

If so, I guess the feedback for Purism would be … can they offer the southpaw variant with the short USB-C cable and the northpaw variant with a somewhat longer cable? (noting that the screen size is fixed here at 13.3" but that might not always be the case) Or, dare I say it, for the price of a USB-C cable, throw in both cables?

More challenging feedback could be … can’t DP altmode be enabled on both USB-C ports (even if you can only use one USB-C port for video input at any one time)?

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Perhaps the longer USB-C cable could have 90-degree connectors on both ends to provide strain relief on the ports and allow for tidier cable management.


Is there a way to make [Alt-tab] switch back to the previously viewed app after a delay (as in e.g. Ubuntu)? As it is now, I have to toggle through the whole list of open apps if I for instance want to swap back and forth between the browser and the terminal (which I quite often do on the desktop).

Does the Nextdock included with this kit charge the Librem 5? I know the Mini X does not.

It does, I have a Nexdock 360, although not from the kit.

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Try shift alt tab.

Yes, I know that one, but it is difficult to press with one hand. On my desktop Linux PCs, it usually works that way that if I continue to hold down the [Alt] key and press [Tab] or [Shift-tab] it cycles through the windows clockwise or counter clockwise, but if I switch window and then release the [Alt] key, and then do [Alt-tab] again it switches to the window that was in focus before that, i.e. not the windows “next in line”.

I don’t know if the behavior on the L5 is specific to PureOS or if it has to do with Phosh.

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Oh I see, I don’t think I ever picked up on that difference, I’m too mouse-oriented I guess. The only machines I’m in close proximity to are a windows one and a Linux with KDE so I can’t check for you, but I guess you’ve looked at the keyboard shortcuts in the settings already?

The longer USB-C cable that comes inside the Nexdock box should be able to reach to the other side I believe.

Yes, and this is one important mark in the Nexdock’s favor that made it my preferred choice for the kit. It provides 1A of charging, which is enough to charge the Librem 5 during typical usage while docked. The mini X only provides 500mA of charging current, which extends the life of the Librem 5, but isn’t enough to maintain or increase the current level of charge.

I believe the focus behavior is defined in phosh. I personally prefer the ordering to be based on what had focus last, instead of application launching order or other orders, because typically when I’m switching between applications, I’m switching back and forth between two or possibly three active applications I’m using. That said, I can see why having a constant app order that never changes could provide a different level of consistency that could be helpful for some people.


So do I, and that is why I asked if there is a way to user define this behavior.

Out of curiosity, what SDR hardware are you using? That works well with the Librem 5? That works well with other Linux computers that you might have?

I used gqrx. I’m a novice when it comes to SDR, but it ran reasonably well once the Librem 5 was docked.

Hey @Kyle_Rankin I had the opportunity to try out your script to toggle tablet mode, and I think it’s really cool!

I was wondering if you or anyone else on this forum can help me modify it to turn off the L5 display when entering Tablet Mode. When I tried using it with the L5 display still on, the applications I opened kept opening up in the L5 screen; even when the NexDock 360 screen was set as primary. Plus, it can help with battery life too.

Much appreciated!

Just an update, I was able to tweak the script to turn off the L5 display. In case anyone else is interested I changed it to this: EDIT: When I ran it a few times I noticed when the L5 screen came back on it was at 100% scale, which makes everything look tiny. I edited the script to include 175% scaling. However, you can tweak the scaling for what your needs are.

if [ -e /tmp/toggle_tablet ]; then
 rm /tmp/toggle_tablet
 wlr-randr  --output DP-1 --transform normal --pos 360,0
# wlr-randr  --output DSI-1 --transform normal --pos 0,0
 wlr-randr --output DSI-1 --on --scale 1.75
else # tablet mode
 touch /tmp/toggle_tablet
 wlr-randr  --output DP-1 --transform 90 --pos 0,720
# wlr-randr  --output DSI-1 --transform 90 --pos 196,0
 wlr-randr --output DSI-1 --off
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With what hardware though?

(I’m even more of a novice but there are some things that I would like to attempt with SDR … one day.)

I used a USB RTL-SDR receiver. This one in particular is the one I have:

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