Successful Reflash to Byzantium

I attempted to upgrade a few months ago, but gave up after I ran into some issues. Today I tried again, but was having trouble, possibly due to my previous attempt at getting uuu.

Finally, I started everything all over, it worked, and I’m now running Byzantium…a world of difference. Very nice!

I followed the guide at

But as Linux Mint is not on the latest Ubuntu version, the uuu package wasn’t in my repo. I couldn’t do `sudo apt install uuu’, so I built it using the first part of this tutorial by @irvinewade (for which, thanks, IW!):

As I discovered before, I didn’t have some of the python packages, so I installed these (thanks @dcz): Flashing to Byzantium

This debhelper version thing turned out not to matter: Flashing to Byzantium

I didn’t have any data that I really needed to back up, so I just let everything be wiped, in order to start fresh. I let the process complete, unplugged, powered on, and everything seems to have gone perfectly.

Everything looks super so far. Still exploring…

Edit: I used my Android’s USB cable.
This is not the LUKS version.


I got my L5 late enough to have Byzantium pre-installed. I’m curious, from a non-technical standpoint, what are the biggest user interface/experience improvements with Byzantium?

At first blush, everything seems smoother, faster, and prettier. Settings has a lot more options, and everything there seems to work without a hitch. There was no problem getting the time to set automatically with my wifi network.

There are more apps installed by default. There are a bunch of nice backgrounds to choose from.

Everything’s snappy. Scrolling is smoother. Apps open instantly.


I don’t like the Show All Apps / Show Only Mobile Friendly Apps toggle on the home screen. It causes my preferred file manager (Nemo) to be hidden by default on startup. (I can add Nemo to favorites, though, which keeps it up top.)

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Yeah, we should probably have an entry in the context menu to force some app into being marked as mobile friendly.

Meanwhile, you can copy its desktop file into ~/.local/share/applications/ and append


which should make it appear on the mobile friendly list.


I don’t quite understand where to find its “desktop file.”

About the toggle on the home screen, in my opinion it should be removed. Nobody will install an app unless they want it, and are willing to work around any adaptation limitations. If it doesn’t play nice, they’ll either adjust the scale or uninstall the app. [EDIT: Disregard. I had forgotten about docking/convergent usage.]

My 2¢ [clink, clink].

BTW, I take it that screen lock codes are still digits only, is that correct?

And is it now possible to change the user from “purism” to something personal? Or will that just create problems?

Usually in /usr/share/applications/

I have some dozen of apps on my phone that I usually use in docked mode, but that aren’t adaptive. They do however still have some basic utility when launched on phone screen. I don’t want them to clutter my launcher by default when I use my phone as a phone, but I do want them to be available when docked and on demand. I find form factor filtering very useful.


Didn’t work, even after reboot, if I understood what you meant. No big deal…I’ll just add it to favorites.

I totally spaced this aspect. Yeah, it makes sense to have the toggle, then. Maybe we’ll get an option to not use that feature later.


You can completely disable the filtering with:

gsettings set sm.puri.phosh app-filter-mode '[]'

and go back to default with:

gsettings reset sm.puri.phosh app-filter-mode
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I think most of the improvements to the Camera app are being made in Byzantium.

I think that having an encrypted root file system out-of-the-box is only an option if running Byzantium.

There are no doubt dozens of functional changes that I am unaware of as I am still running Amber. I guess that now that @amarok has reflashed, the pressure is on me. :rofl:


Byzantium seems a lot more advanced, so I’m sure you won’t regret it. I’d be interested to hear about your experience, especially if you plan to preserve data and settings from Amber.

Plan? Hmmm. I’m still bogged down with Pwnkit on other computers so haven’t had time to reflash the Librem 5. I think my plan will be: wipe / start from scratch (as you did) and then just redo the 1000 things that I have done by way of customisations, settings, installs (which I can redo from my notes).

I am thinking of going LUKS (unlike you) so I suspect that preserving anything from Amber is close to impossible anyway (other than that the uSD card - not encrypted - should work ‘as is’ - so I am only referring to preserving anything on the eMMC drive).

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I probably would have chosen encryption…if I had remembered that I had to specify a different image. (Or if the documentation had indicated that.) I suppose I could do it over. Now would be the perfect time.

I think it’s an (optional) argument to the flash script.


I don’t want to have to do this three times - so if I ever want encryption then the reflash from Amber to Byzantium is the time to do it.

I believe that all portable devices should use encryption, not because we face state actors in our threat model etc., but just because portable devices are more readily lost or opportunistically stolen. At the very least it is a courtesy to my friends, relatives and colleagues whose contact details will appear on my phone (at least until the calling and emailing apps support LDAP).

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Some observations:


  • GNOME Weather picked up my location and displayed the forecast.
  • GNOME Maps found my semi-precise location (within 30-ish meters) even though I was indoors, sitting by a window. (I didn’t notice how quickly it happened, as I only checked Maps after some time sitting there.) [EDIT: It finds a fix very quickly upon opening Maps.]
  • Default sound quality for phone calls seems pretty good on both ends. (unscientific, brief test, talking to myself on two phones)
  • Quite a few colorful backgrounds can be selected from Settings. You can also add an image of your own.
  • There are more options available in the Settings than with Amber, including various toggles for docked use.
  • Superimposed dialog boxes have controls to dismiss them without having to minimize the app to swipe away.
  • Display has 5 resolution (scale) settings.
  • Automatic date/time works instantly on connection to network.


  • Initially bluetooth started scanning as soon as I turned it on, but now it seems to have stopped working, and turns itself off when closing Settings. Still shows as enabled in quick settings area. My Android doesn’t see the L5, either. [EDIT: A reboot directly from the BT settings screen brought back functionality.]
  • Settings>Privacy>File History & Trash doesn’t scale to screen (in default resolution). Some of the other settings panels take a second or two to scale, sometimes.
  • Still no UI option to remove unwanted Online Accounts cloud links (i.e. Evil Corp 1, Evil Corp 2, etc.).
  • In the Store, it’s necessary to enable “Show incompatible applications” to find all matching software when using the search function. Some of that software likely adapts to the screen even if it’s not officially labeled “compatible.”
  • Timeout for screen lock still doesn’t obey my chosen interval. (Screen locks immediately when display blanks or power button is pushed.)

If you both want to flash it encrypted, I suggest doing so with this branch as it should generate a new encryption key (the default passphrase is still 123456, that doesn’t change). Though you’ll need to make sure that you have cryptsetup-reencrypt and uuu installed, and unfortunately the flash needs to be run as root. This avoids the lengthy process seen in the other thread.
I did so this past weekend, and it worked for me.

On the device you plan to flash from, this is what I did, and be sure to follow the instructions it gives you once the image is downloaded.

git clone
cd librem5-flash-image
git checkout luks-flash
sudo  ./scripts/librem5-flash-image --dist byzantium --variant luks --skip-cleanup

At the moment yes, but phosh 1.15 should be available for update either tomorrow or the day after, and this adds a keyboard button to the lockscreen numberpad to open it up. Don’t change your password to non numeric until you see that in the lock screen.


Additional observations:

  • The software categories (i.e. curated, and presumably, adaptive apps) in the Store take a long time to populate :slightly_frowning_face: , but now include lots more apps than in Amber. :slightly_smiling_face: [EDIT: This is only if "Show incompatible applications’ is enabled. Otherwise, normal time to populate.]
  • I think charging is capped at 80% by default now. [Edit: It’s not.] :slightly_smiling_face:
  • Terminal-style keyboard seems to be the default in the terminal now, even if “English (US)” (dependent on your region) has the active button enabled. :slightly_smiling_face:
  • Selecting “Terminal” keyboard in other apps applies system-wide (as before), and does not persist after reboot (as before). :neutral_face:
  • Calendar is very nicely adaptive now, which it wasn’t in Amber. :slightly_smiling_face:
  • There’s haptic feedback on power up now. :slightly_smiling_face:


For my use that will be excellent but really it should just remember what the user has chosen i.e. choice stored persistently. My choice to use Terminal shouldn’t be forced upon anyone else.

What is 80% of what though? This has always been confusing to me (even in amber).

Are you saying that somewhere it displays the charge percentage and that displayed value never goes above 80? If so, I think this is going to confuse users.

If you are saying that 100% is defined as 80% of the actual capacity of the battery then that is reasonable but some users may want to override that i.e. trade-off to gain time between charges at the cost of total battery lifespan.

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I was referring to charging of the battery being automatically stopped at 80% full. I’m probably wrong, and confusing this with one of /e/OS’s stated goals.

I’ve only charged once since flashing Byzantium; when I noticed that the red light had gone off during charging, I observed the charge was at 78% or so (which I interpreted as battery discharging slightly after charging stopped).

I’ll observe more closely at the next charge and see if it definitely behaves that way. I don’t see anything in the Power settings about limiting charging.

EDIT: @irvinewade, Charged again today. Red LED went out at 85% (That’s 85% according to the indicator), but the phone continued charging just fine. PowerStats shows battery capacity at 100%, i.e. healthy.

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