Removal of chess unwise?

I don’t play chess, and would like to eliminate it from my librem5.

$ sudo apt list --installed '*chess*'
Listing... Done
gnome-chess/amber-phone,now 1:3.34.0+2398+git92ba2c0-1pureos0 arm64 [installed,automatic]
hoichess/amber,now 0.22.0-1 arm64 [installed,automatic]
$ sudo apt remove gnome-chess hoichess
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree        
Reading state information... Done
The following packages will be REMOVED:
gnome-chess hoichess librem5-gnome
0 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 3 to remove and 2 not upgraded.
After this operation, 3374 kB disk space will be freed.
Do you want to continue? [Y/n] n
$ sudo apt info librem5-gnome
Package: librem5-gnome
Version: 32
Priority: optional
Section: metapackages
Source: librem5-base
Maintainer: librem5-maintainers <>
Installed-Size: 18.4 kB
Depends: epiphany-browser, evince, geary, gedit, gnome-calculator, gnome-chess, gnome-clocks, gnome-contacts, gnome-terminal, gnome-usage, gnome-weather, kgx, librem5-gnome-base, librem5-gnome-phone, librem5-non-gnome, yelp
Download-Size: 10.7 kB
APT-Manual-Installed: yes 
APT-Sources: amber-phone/main arm64 Packages
Description: GNOME metapackage for the Librem5
This package contains the GNOME apps and other high-level GNOME
metapackages for the Librem5
It should be installed on every librem5.

Hmm - “should be installed on every librem5” sounds a bit ominous, so I’m holding off for now. If anyone has knowledge on this, I’m all ears. (Maybe any info is worth an entry in the Tips&Tricks wiki.) I’m considering just removing /usr/share/applications/org.gnome.Chess.desktop. Note that the pureos store does offer to remove it without saying anything else would go too, so I’m not clear on what it’s doing differently.


I would say: Make sure that you can ssh in and reinstall librem5-gnome in case it breaks something - or make sure that you have a backup.


librem5-gnome is a metapackage. Its purpose is to pull additional packages needed for the correct operation of the UI when you upgrade. I would not recommend removing it.

That being said, I am going to pick up the topic of chess being there.


Looks like an empty package to pull in other packages. Specifically these:

After removing librem5-gnome, the others might be considered by apt a candidates for autoremoval (auto installed but no package depending on them). You might want to apt install epiphany-browser evince geary ... (name any package you want to stay) so that apt autoremove will not insist on removing them.

Other than that, I see no issue with removing *chess* and librem5-gnome


I have to say, this is one on my list of things that bug me: having mandatory apps infused to OS. I could probably live with chess but especially epiphany irks me, as I never use it. I agree what @linmob wrote in other topic that L5 would look more ready if it had a few more apps for common tasks (maps, music player etc.) readily installed, but using metapackage makes the apps in essence “mandatory” like IE was with Windows - takes more than average know-how to pull them without breaking the system. It stinks a bit.

Unless there is a reason, which should be stated somewhere, none of those should be forced on with a metapackage. Even if it makes something eeasier. That being said, why not have (lets say on the top of my head) three variations - minimum, standard and “all the toys” - which user could choose from, if one (or, 1+1+1) has to be used? In the first boot, there could be a screen asking either “do you want to install these with the next update or keep minimum system” or “do you want to keep these apps or go to minimum system and have them purged with the next update”.

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nooo don’t uninstall GNOME-Chess ! :sob:

i for one welcome Chess to be installed by default but i know many people wouldn’t want it … i think that Chess players are a minority and thus this app should NOT come preinstalled on the L5 … unless a significant number of L5 users request this thing to happen.

i would welcome more people in the Chess community but that doesn’t mean that folks should be forced to play/learn Chess … it’s the best game for ME but it’s not for everybody …

I tried it on the Librem 5 in virtualbox (Yup, I’m still waiting for my modem confirmation email and hence my Librem 5) and did a sudo init 6, my virtual machine does boot up properly and it worked well. I could play the ‘checkers’ game that I had installed.
You might want to give it a try on a virtual machine on desktop just to be sure.

Unfortunately, this is an issue with any preinstalled application right now - you can’t uninstall any of them without uninstalling metapackages that hold everything together. This is going to be fixed in Byzantium (the next PureOS release).


Byzantium works great for me as a daily surfing and av-media-playback/streaming machine … HEVC encodes playback (264/265/VP9) are OK but AV1 is choppy and unwatchable …

Please refrain yourself from writing these offtopic comments. You are doing that way too often.


Letting my subconscious stew on it overnight, I probably don’t want to remove the metapackage so that I immediately pick up the camera & matrix apps when they arrive. The command shown below is good enough for me, as it hides Chess in the App Drawer. I can live with running that whenever Chess gets updated. (And if that becomes burdensome, I could stick it in a cron job.

f=/usr/share/applications/org.gnome.Chess.desktop; grep 'NoDisplay=true' $f || echo 'NoDisplay=true' | sudo tee -a $f


I’d be curious to know if it uses its own AI or does it farm out the opponent’s move to a remote server? (Deep thought? 42?)


now you’re just teasing :slight_smile: i can play a normal game of Chess WHILE offline and after i go online i notice no unusual traffic going on. besides Chess isn’t as complex as Go or Stacraft II. that’s where the focus lies nowadays.

for your pleasure i recommend that you watch an episode of a Stracraft II streaming a human (pro) opponent vs a Starcraft bottom up trained AGI …

Heh, gotta love Debian…
The L5 meta package really should list things like gnome-chess as “recommended packages”, which makes it easy to include everything (assuming their APT frontend is set to install recommended packages), but lets the user remove it without further consequence.

That said, it’s a limitation of APT that you can’t really have multiple versions of packages available (in this case, the meta package with and without games).

Would’t that be confusing? What about “core”, “basic” or “essential” package and additionally a “demo” meta package with recommended and thus optional packets to showcase what the L5 is capable of.

It’s not an issue with Debian - it’s an issue with the fact that, for historical reasons™, amber-phone images come configured in a way that disables installation of recommended packages.

Purism is installing hoichess by default? That backend doesn’t look like it’s very well supported.

  • What’s it doing?|- It’s learning.
    Greetings, Professor Falken.
    Hello, Joshua.
    Strange game.
    The only winning move is not to play.
    How about a nice game of chess?
    Colonel Conley, take us to DEFCON 5.
    Yes, sir.

He clearly made a mistake. He didn’t meant to say DEFCON 5 but Librem 5.

I'm sorry Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.

It’s not confusing. It’s gentoo’s USE-flag system, it just turns the dependency-resolution problem into an NP-Hard problem (but that’s still solved by the computer, not you). There’s a reason calculating updates takes like 5 minutes on my machine. I believe NixOS has a similar ability.

But yes, the traditional workaround for Debian is to provide multiple meta packages. Which comes with its own brand of confusion.

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