New Post: Purism 2022 Roadmap

I’m so desperate for a tenkeyless Librem 15/16. Not overly hopeful based on that thread but I’d be so happy if it happened .

I didn’t know about that rumor, but it seems semi-official :slight_smile:
Actually, I didn’t even think about updates. Just about really new products.
But of course, L16, L14v2 make sense*.
As does Fir. (L5v2)

(*) and if they find a way for international layouts (without half-height keys, off buttons where the Delete key belongs and similar atrocities) that’d be great.

I’m certainly still interested in an L5 Fir, but still won’t order until they are in stock and ready to ship within days of an order, as well as affordable. And that may be several years or more away, but so be it. For now, affordable degooged phones is the way.

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@Kyle_Rankin Apart from the fact that that blog post doesn’t actually contain a roadmap, it’s great to know that a roadmap exists (and hopefully for a Librem16v1 or at least a Librem15v5).

On a high level, one thing I’d like to see is Purism conducting more polls along the lines of:

  • Which proposed design would you buy and how much would you pay for it?
  • Which features are must-haves? Which are must-not-haves?

I realize that with the departure from crowd funding comes an increased emphasis on design secrecy. This is understandable from a competitive advantage standpoint. But in Purism’s case, I would suggest that design secrecy is a competitive disadvantage because their competitors are so comparatively inept with respect to platform security that Purism would be better off reaping the advantages of a prospective buyer review before initiating manufacturing. (Nobody else even seems to offer kill switches, for starters.) I don’t want to see the next laptop spin end up like a dumb real estate development that suffers from critical flaws, when a simple public design review would have prevented the waste.

Here are few critical issues for a putative Librem 16, from my personal point of view. Everyone will have their own issues, and nobody will get their ideal laptop, but we can try to optimize on a consensus for the design team to consider. (I realize that there are plenty of related threads, but it seems like this might be a good thread for people to dump their realistic wishlists into.) I suspect that the team is probably a year into the design process, but nothing is set in stone until the schematics hit the factory.

  • 4K matte display or no purchase.

  • 6 physical cores or more, or no purchase.

  • The Librem 15 case was flimsy and “poppy”. There wasn’t enough space for the fan and heat spreader, so pressure on the case translated to pressure through the entire thermal stack and into the motherboard.

  • I suggest that the headphone jack needs a microphone input. Environmental mics just suck. Analog jacks also need a good deal of shock mitigation due to the zapping that inevitably occurs when connecting a headset in a dry climate. That, and tough mechanical reinforcement.

  • I suggest that we split up the kill switches for wifi, bluetooth, camera, and mics (but envronmental mic and analog headphone jack mic can share a switch). There are simply too many use cases in which one but not the other needs to be enabled. In any event, more splitting is better than less.

  • I’m now aware of 2 other Librem 15 owners who have seen keys go out, and at least one other case of random key repetition disease. As I explained in an earlier post, I suspect this is due to pressure on the ribbon cables which connect the panel to the main chassis, causing mechanical stress on wires or bonding points that result in noise effects on the keyboard.

  • The leaky keyboard backlight on Librem 15 is really painful. Some people agree with me, but others don’t care. I wish they were splashproof keys with no light leakage from the perimeter (only illuminated letters).

  • There’s some debate over whether or not the number pad should be there. I vote yes, but it’s not critical.

  • Definitely no power button where the delete key should be. This is probably the worst feature of some Macbook keyboards.

  • Don’t worry too much about price. Worry about critical features. If I just wanted low priced crap, I could buy from a host of other vendors tomorrow.

  • Case should continue to be black. Nobody wants a silver glare generator for a laptop, titanium or not.

  • GPU is a must-not-have. Sucks power, drivers full of bugs, security nightmare. I can use one on Amazon if I need the compute or buy a gaming console if I’m so compelled.

I’m still a fan and looking forward to your new product launches.


I hope there is still the choice of Coreboot, due to the fact I had problem with Pureboot.

Also if Pureboot is going to be standard, is there anyway that Purism can make the instruction clearer on there documentation, as I have find their instruction on the documentation confusing.

Is their anyway possilbe, they can make Pureboot more user friendly?

I really hope Purism does really well this year, I wish there were more like Purism doing there thing :slight_smile:

Wifi and Bluetooth are on the same chip, and, moreover, Bluetooth is not officially supported, since it requires a proprietary blob.

AFAIK this is exactly why Purism still don’t make Pureboot the default. After it’s all solved, Coreboot will not be really needed I guess.

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Thanks, I didn’t realize that Wifi and Bluetooth share the same chip. Although, the switch could instead cut them off at the antenna level. Since I don’t use Bluetooth, it’s basically just another source of UHF radiation that I’d rather not broadcast (which I suppose happens regardless of whether the binary blob is installed). It’s not a deal breaker, though.

The TRRS-to-mic adapter might work if I could get hold of one. But in any event, it would be cleaner and simpler just to have a 3-band audio jack that works like a mobile phone audio jack, i.e. mic plus 2 stereo outputs. The fewer gadgets we need to carry, the better. Hopefully this will be addressed in the next major laptop spin.

Thanks linking the thread about the replacement for Librem 15. Lots of good suggestions in there. Which reminds me:

  • ECC memory, at least as an option, is a must. It’s not about mitigating random errors. It’s about preventing the known hazards of directed attacks that can be launched with no privileges to compromise the OS. (It’s effectively impossible to prove that this can’t occur on any given hardware setup, so better just ECC and forget it. It would be great to have this in the CPU L1, L2, and L3 caches as well, although that’s not likely to happen unless we can cram a Xeon server chip into a laptop thermal envelope. (Hmm… maybe we could run a many-core Xeon at low MHz, thereby gaining performance and the benefits of on-die ECC without blowing the power budget.)

  • Speaking of overheating chips, have a firmware setting or a physical switch which toggles CPU Turbo Mode, so we can stop listening to that damn fan noise every time some news website pegs the CPU with autoplay videos and animated GIFs. That way, we wouldn’t need to do hacks with MSR registers to turn it off for the 99% of the time that it does nothing useful and only increases heat and noise. This isn’t critical, though.

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It turns out it’s pretty complicated to have a system where files in boot are signed and need to be re-signed when they change (which can happen somewhat frequently when you update). While I tried my best to write the PureBoot documentation well, I’m sure there are gaps and holes, and areas that could benefit from extra explanation, if I know what they are.

As far as the future of coreboot, even if we make PureBoot the default that doesn’t mean that coreboot goes away, it just means it becomes the secondary option. There are still plenty of reasons we would want to keep coreboot as an option, including the fact that there are some OSes that can’t necessarily be kexeced into (which is how PureBoot does it) so we’d want coreboot to be available for customers who, for instance, might want to boot or dual-boot into Windows (yes some of our customers do).

There is still work to do before PureBoot can be the default anyway. For instance, we need to develop a “PureBoot Basic” mode (name not set in stone) for customers who don’t buy a Librem Key, that skips all of the tamper detection that depends on a Librem Key. It would behave more like coreboot in that instance, and just boot into the OS and in that way be “simpler” while still providing a much richer recovery environment than you’d get with coreboot+grub.


Note that you can still disable BT in software and get most of the power saving from that and no radio waves.

Well, that’s the same thing. TipRingRingSleeve is a 3-channel connector, where TRS is stereo.
The adapter would be used to split these into stereo + microphone, as you can see in the original post.

In summary, you want Purism devices to have a TRRS instead of a TRS.
I’m not quite sure, but I would assume that L5 and L14 have that? :thinking:


… and to make the obvious observation that WiFi on the 2.4 GHz band is operating in the same spectrum as Bluetooth so there are some benefits in having them on the same chip (while WiFi on the 5 GHz band is different spectrum - but the card / chip typically does both WiFi bands these days - so it tends to be all three or none, at a hardware level).

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In practice, you can’t disable Bluetooth (or wifi, for that matter) in software because everytime you install a new OS image (which is rather often for many of us), the installer “helps” out by turning on everything by default before you can intervene. You generally can’t even turn it off in software before you turn it on in hardware, because otherwise it’s not even in the menus.

Yes, we want Purism devices to have a TRRS. (I didn’t know that was the acronym for the 3-band plugs.) Right now, they don’t have a connection for the mic on Librem 15. Not sure about 14.

the L14 has a TRRS jack


On new innovations this year, it seems like a bad idea to introduce the Fir version of Librem5 when order fulfillment is 52 weeks so my guess for 2022 reveals would be the Librem 11 tablet from 2016 that got shelved. This way Purism competes with Pine64’s tablet before the PineTab exits beta this year.

Two-edged sword. There are good reasons for this but …

You get this behaviour either from booting a live environment or from installing a new system from scratch.

You can presumably fix this if you are good enough i.e. by repackaging the “ISO”.

You can also potentially get the situation where “BIOS” itself enables Bluetooth, only for the operating system to turn it off once control is transferred to the OS. That would be harder for you to fix.

For what it’s worth, that’s one advantage of the PureBoot environment. It runs a limited Linux kernel with a minimal number of modules built in.


… advantage depending on the hardware. If it’s a laptop then it would be unusual to want Bluetooth “on” during BIOS, probably only if the built-in keyboard has become faulty. For something like the Mini, things are not so clear cut.

If you have a computer that runs full time with a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse then for the times that the customer wants to stop in BIOS (which is likely not on every boot), it would be desirable always to enable Bluetooth temporarily in BIOS, otherwise the customer could find it necessary to run off and get a wired keyboard.

Obviously this cannot conveniently be a BIOS option for this customer. (It could still be a BIOS option so that customers that never use Bluetooth can just turn it off.)

So, as far as I can see, this customer either has a need sometimes to run off and get a wired keyboard or you have that temporary Bluetooth exposure.

One thing is for sure though … if it’s a pure open source environment, the customer theoretically gets the choice about the functionality and can make that convenience / security trade-off regardless of decisions made by the vendor.

A BIOS option to disable BlueTooth (and wifi and, why not, Turbo Mode) would be great. As in, remove the device from PCI config space so it can’t be enabled at all. And, yes, I get into this problem frequently because I run random OS versions on a regular basis. Repacking ISOs would be a hard way to do business.

None of this is must-have, but it would be nice.

I test drove a Tesla Model 3 this week. Man, what a car? I’ve never experienced anything like it. No internal combustion engine sports car that I’ve ever been in even compares. When it comes to acceleration, it’s more like an aggressive carnival ride than a car. I can reserve my place in line to buy a $60K Model 3 (including taxes and upgrades) with only a $250 refundable deposit. Even with my early $599.00 Librem 5 pre-order, I could have reserved two Tesla Model 3’s for less than what I paid for my place in line to get one Librem 5. The wait in line for a Tesla to be delivered would be much shorter and on time as agreed, for the Tesla. Apparently, Tesla does not count on income from new orders to fund the production of their back orders. Perhaps Purism should take a lesson from this example after the initial financing round.

Good ideas shouldn’t require advanced full payment just to get in-line, long waiting periods, lots of excuses and routine disappointments. They get fully funded. They experience a steep production ramp, and they’re just as happy to refund your deposit if you change your mind. How many cars would Tesla sell if you had to pay in-full up-front and suffer an undetermined waiting period?


You know Tesla is making money from more than just their cars, right?

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That’s irrelevant. The point is no other legit company (at least none that I’ve worked with) expects you to pay upfront for a product that you have no guarantee when you will get it. Purism should start acting like a legit company, then people will stop complaining.

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