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#1 2017-08-28 14:42:43

GNUser
Member
Registered: 2017-03-16
Posts: 133

Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

https://puri.sm/shop/librem-5/

I've been looking for a completely libre GNU/Linux phone for many years. It sounds like the Purism folks are serious about trying to build such a device.

Last edited by GNUser (2017-08-29 12:54:01)

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#2 2017-08-28 15:27:38

Somewhat Reticent
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Registered: 2017-04-06
Posts: 99

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

So they're going to negotiate liberating all those hardware drivers? No more "blobs"? Forming a new (separate, independent) phone network/system?

Last edited by Somewhat Reticent (2017-08-28 15:30:37)

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#3 2017-08-28 15:42:36

GNUser
Member
Registered: 2017-03-16
Posts: 133

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

Their goal is 100% free software, no blobs. That's implied in their desire to obtain RYF ("Respects Your Freedom") certification from the FSF--if there are blobs anywhere, FSF will not certify the phone.

This from their FAQ:

Are all hardware components running completely free software, with the source code available?

From testing the CPU, GPU, Bootloader and all software will run free software, we are evaluating the WiFi and Bluetooth chips and firmware, this is an area we have to evaluate, finalize, and test. The mobile baseband will most likely use ROM loaded firmware, but a free software kernel driver. We intend to invest time and money toward freeing any non-free firmware.

Will you be seeking FSF RYF endorsement?

We will constantly keep FSF up-to-date on the hardware and software, our current understanding is any non-free kernel firmware needed for RF chips will not meet the RYF qualifications today, so we will continue to evaluate the WiFi and Bluetooth cards in the hopes to advance toward RYF. The end goal for us is to gain RYF for all Purism products.

I don't like the vague "we will continue to evaluate the WiFi and Bluetooth cards". That needs some clarification.

Nevertheless, I think this effort deserves to be supported: How many phone developers have ever said "we intend to invest time and money toward freeing any non-free firmware...and the end goal for us is to gain RYF [certification]"?

P.S. I realize that this is a longshot given that Replicant has been at it for many years and has yet to deliver a libre phone where everything (including WiFi and Bluetooth) works. Nevertheless, I'm cautiously optimistic about the Librem5 given that, unlike Replicant, Purism will be building the phone themselves out of components they have selected/made.

Last edited by GNUser (2017-08-28 19:04:16)

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#4 2017-08-28 18:08:27

GNUser
Member
Registered: 2017-03-16
Posts: 133

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

I wrote to Purism. My question:

If you can't find existing peripherals (e.g., mobile WiFi and Bluetooth chips) that can run with 100% free software--no proprietary blobs anywhere--will you make (or ask someone to make) such peripherals for the Librem 5?

Their answer:

I asked our CEO directly, this is his reply:

"Yes. This is one of the reasons I formed Purism, to push the beliefs
into fabrication."

-Mladen Pejaković
Purism support

Last edited by GNUser (2017-08-28 18:52:13)

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#5 2017-08-28 19:54:40

γραφω λογον
Member
Registered: 2017-07-27
Posts: 16

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

Purism is not a company that deserves your trust, IMNSHO.

https://trisquel.info/en/forum/truth-about-purism

https://trisquel.info/en/search/node/purism

https://hackerfall.com/story/the-truth- … t-the-same

https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page= … dev-purism

https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page= … -Librem-13

I would personally recommend a Replicant phone if you need to be available at all times for work and/or family responsibilities or a landline (and pen and paper if your family is anything like mine, lol) if you don't.


My English is still a work in progress; no offense was intended.

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#6 2017-08-28 20:03:06

Somewhat Reticent
Member
Registered: 2017-04-06
Posts: 99

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

GNUser wrote:

I don't like the vague … needs some clarification.

Nevertheless, I think this effort deserves to be supported: How many phone developers have ever said "we intend to invest time and money toward freeing any non-free firmware...and the end goal for us is to gain RYF [certification]"?

P.S. I realize that this is a longshot …

Vague indeed. If I Recall Correctly, they've always settled for (being) compromise(d).
The EOMA68 project is the only serious effort I've seen in this direction. If anything deserves support …

Last edited by Somewhat Reticent (2017-08-28 20:04:50)

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#7 2017-08-28 20:08:32

GNUser
Member
Registered: 2017-03-16
Posts: 133

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

Thank you both. I guess the moral of the story is that if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Sigh.

I'll believe in a 100% libre phone where everything works when I see a RYF announcement from the FSF.

Sorry for the noise. I'll curb my enthusiasm with Purism and will support them with half of what I had planned to. I'd at least like to see them try.

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#8 2017-08-28 20:45:28

fungus
Member
From: Any witch way
Registered: 2017-07-12
Posts: 263
Website

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

I have no 1st hand experience and I have no idea how big of a phone you can tolerate, but have you looked at udoo?
They say that ubuntu is running on it as an amd64 system and someone got debian to work too.  But they are scarce and on a waiting list basis I think.  I'll keep my 17 year old nokia for a while.

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#9 2017-08-28 20:58:43

GNUser
Member
Registered: 2017-03-16
Posts: 133

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

Thanks, fungus. I'll look into udoo, but my guess is that it isn't 100% libre given that I couldn't find it anywhere on FSF's lists.

The only fully free phone OS I am aware of is Replicant. I've tried Replicant 6 on a few phones but I couldn't get any of them to recognize my SIM card, making the phones useless.

I'm going to hold on to my current "compromised" phone until I have something that runs only free software and, unlike Replicant, actually works for me.

Last edited by GNUser (2017-08-29 14:20:37)

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#10 2017-08-28 21:50:11

fungus
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From: Any witch way
Registered: 2017-07-12
Posts: 263
Website

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

no udoo is the hardware, like blkberry, tiny board with 4core intel amd64 architecture and usb power.  No fans, as far as I can tell, and anything else is just like an intel-pc.  So any linux/BSD pretty much would run as far as I am told.  I have no clue what the phone capabilities are.  It seems more like a tiny pc board that it is up to you what you want to do with it.  If you want to take your home cinema and tiny projector to a camping party on a 15000' hill, now you can smile

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#11 2017-08-28 22:23:21

fungus
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From: Any witch way
Registered: 2017-07-12
Posts: 263
Website

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

On the other hand, with great respect to an all free/open system, without open/free hardware, bios, what good is it to self restrict.  Even building a cabin in the forest these days with stone, mud, and wood is not open and free, as we are restricted by industrial non-free tools.  And it is nice to have a couple of pieces of glass to be able to see the bear outside waiting for ya.
Unfortunately there seems to be no perceived significant market for an industry to mass produce such a device and if they did so would anyone else, and it will be a 0 profit product in a short while.  By the time they release a new piece of hardware, internally they probably consider it obsolete already.  They will not release the next unless competitors have caught up and they can still milk the dead cow.
In general, chasing after the Open/Free in an idealistic way within a market bourgeois system is almost as conservative of a viewpoint as idealistic neoliberalism.  It is good to be pushing to the limits as long as you are conscious of the reality that unless the constrains of the overall system are broken you will never reach your goal.  Unless you are an altruistic industrialist who wants to save his soul, equally selfish and self centered as the rest of them.
It is almost like veganism.  If you sell the idea of stop murdering poor animals to the individual with guilt induced marketing, they subscribe to the cult.  If you tell them to stop eating meat to save the environment and help feed the hungry they couldn't care less.  So I am asking you, are the individuals who do use open/free software, do they deserve it?  In my perception no, because they are doing it just for their own selfish interests.  It is like an excuse, of being politically correct and living in an upper middle class contained white ghetto.  You are not racist unless "they" come close to your fence.  It is the same principle with someone running an 8core pc with 32GB of ram as an entertainment center, looking down on you because you are using non-free firmware to steal wifi from the restaurant next door with a $50 pc you got from a church auction.  Do I hear someone thinking of running kali on devuan? :b

Enough with californication, let's have devuanication, by any means necessary wink

Last edited by fungus (2017-08-29 01:15:29)

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#12 2017-08-28 23:38:46

golinux
Administrator
Registered: 2016-11-25
Posts: 551

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

fungus . . . this forum is not the place for you (or anyone else) to spew personal ideology.  An edit could save your post from being sequestered elsewhere.   If other forum users find it appropriate, I may reconsider . . .

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#13 2017-08-29 01:14:32

fungus
Member
From: Any witch way
Registered: 2017-07-12
Posts: 263
Website

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

If you can point a single reference that points into ideology I would gladly remove it.
I really like to know because I avoid all ideology (based on the common dictionary of ideology and as described by dominant social science).
But since this is a discussion with gnuser I think he/she should have a say on it as well.
I really don't mind removing it if you help me understand on which grounds are you demanding I remove so.

Should I remind you that I am the same person you locked off the DNG list because of a SINGLE reply to a spam thread that was bogging the list for weeks?  It was not until MY message you decided to take action on the spam.

How else are we going to get to a common understanding what "free" really means in contrast to non-free if we are not allowed to talk about it?

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#14 2017-08-29 01:31:37

golinux
Administrator
Registered: 2016-11-25
Posts: 551

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

Please curb your imagination!  I did NOT remove you from the DNG list.  At that time I did not even have the ability to do so. 

More on the questions you asked above a bit later . . .

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#15 2017-08-29 01:47:07

GNUser
Member
Registered: 2017-03-16
Posts: 133

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

Fungus, I can't comment on post #11 because the text is gone.

Regarding free software, I am not an ideologue and am comfortable with either the FSF's definition (https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.html) or Debian's (https://www.debian.org/intro/free).

Different people obviously have different levels of tolerance for proprietary software. Personally, I tolerate proprietary firmware for mobile peripherals to work, but only as a temporizing measure until folks who are much smarter than I am figure out a way to do without.

I'm too old and tired to hop from phone to phone, but am definitely looking to switch from my current Android phone to one that runs GNU/Linux and requires no proprietary firmware. Again, that's just my game plan and what I am personally comfortable with. If other people find it fun to experiment with different phones and have more tolerance for proprietary software, they should go for it. Different strokes for different folks smile

Last edited by GNUser (2017-08-29 02:17:48)

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#16 2017-08-29 02:44:17

golinux
Administrator
Registered: 2016-11-25
Posts: 551

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

GNUser wrote:

Fungus, I can't comment on post #11 because the text is gone.

No, it isn't. It's just hidden with a white font color.  Cursor magic will make it appear (no lemon juice needed).

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#17 2017-08-29 07:31:09

golinux
Administrator
Registered: 2016-11-25
Posts: 551

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

OK, fungus . . . here is an answer for you.  Phrases like "a market bourgeois system" and "idealistic neoliberalism" are ideological concepts.   And the last para is an empty rant of emotional, judgmental opinions and buzzwords that have no place here or in any rational discussion.  The world is the world.  It spins as it will.  Adding to the strife accomplishes nothing.  It just feeds the beast.  Please don't drag this forum (and by association the Devuan project) down into the cesspool.

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#18 2017-08-29 10:15:40

fungus
Member
From: Any witch way
Registered: 2017-07-12
Posts: 263
Website

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

OK, let's end this since we can agree to disagree.  Your statement defines an ideology, mine doesn't.  Mine is criticism on your ideology.

I have two choices, shut-up and restrict my communication to your ideological constrains "the world is the world and adding to the strife accomplishes nothing" or risk (no risk it is for sure) being thrown off the forum.

Unlike been subjected to your ideological constrains I will do nothing.  I will neither comply or communicate.  At least now the rest know exactly where golinux stands ideologically and how "free" this forum is.

In other words, gnu free means exactly the same as you being free to demonstrate, since the riot police is free to prevent you from doing so.

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#19 2017-08-29 10:32:48

fungus
Member
From: Any witch way
Registered: 2017-07-12
Posts: 263
Website

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

golinux wrote:

Please curb your imagination!  I did NOT remove you from the DNG list.  At that time I did not even have the ability to do so. 

More on the questions you asked above a bit later . . .

You mean there is a different golinux on the list that has blocked my account from posting?  Because over the past month none of my "moderated" messages ever got to the list.  I call that "removal" and I do apologize if it is a different person baptized with the same nickname.  All I know is "golinux" saying:

[political rant]

Good grief. GET A GRIP! What you"re saying may be very true. BUT THIS 
IS NOT THE PLACE FOR IT. Please cultivate some restraint and THINK 
before posting if you want to continue to post here.

golinux@dyne.org

This was after A SINGLE COMMENT after weeks to a neonazi propagandist spammer.
The next thing I know is my account being moderated.  My one comment had NO PLACE there but weeks of spamming by the neonazi spammer and his "rational discussion" feeders DID HAVE A PLACE.

Go ahead golinux do what you have to do.  I am done!  For the rest, if there is a public archive of the list, as it should, look for a thread "Sexual politics and society" and judge for yourselves.  Mine is about the last post before moderation.

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#20 2017-08-29 12:22:36

GNUser
Member
Registered: 2017-03-16
Posts: 133

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

Thanks for the tip, golinux. I was able to read the post.

Fungus, your post is clearly political and tangential. I don't see what neoliberalism, veganism, and political correctness have to do with this thread. If this forum's rules prohibit political/tangential posts, then the post is inappropriate and golinux is just doing his job. Nevertheless, I agree with you that the rules need to apply to all forum/list users and that certain users should not be singled out.

BTW, I hope you realize that you are convicting yourself of selfishness and saying that you don't deserve to use Devuan when you write: "individuals who do use open/free software, do they deserve it?  In my perception no, because they are doing it just for their own selfish interests." You do realize that Debian and Devuan's core is all free software? The main repository consists of nothing but free software smile It all goes back to Debian's founding: "The Debian Project is an association of individuals who have made common cause to create a free operating system."

As for "self restricting", we all do it: We don't associate with certain people or use certain things in the interest of avoiding harm or potential for harm. The potential for harm in using proprietary software is well documented and I'm not going to rehash that here. If your point is that free software in userspace is of little use when things are proprietary closer to metal (BIOS and firmware), then I completely agree and that's why I'm not going to waste time and effort to hop from compromised phone to compromised phone.

---

Anyway, back to the main topic of the thread: I hope the Librem 5 proves to be the holy grail phone that's fully functional and uses only free software from the bootloader on up, but I guess we'll have to wait and see.

If Purism makes compromises when they hit road blocks, theirs will be just another "security and privacy focused" "mostly free" phone. I think such devices are doomed from the start because most potential users (folks who care about privacy) already have a "mostly free" device that they've configured to be "security and privacy focused".

Last edited by GNUser (2017-08-29 15:29:54)

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#21 2017-08-29 15:49:03

golinux
Administrator
Registered: 2016-11-25
Posts: 551

Re: Finally a free software GNU/Linux phone?

@fungus . . . Even though I said that on the DNG mailing list, I did not have the ability AT THAT TIME to do so.  Please stop repeating "alternate facts".  You are only a victim of your own behavior.  IOW you are doing it to yourself.

Have you ever read this forum's (almost) No Code of Conduct?  In light of that, I am sadly locking this thread.  If you persist, you will enjoy a 'time out' from posting on this forum.

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