Purism Highlights Challenges During Coreboot Development

Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 29 August 2017 at 11:14 AM EDT. 24 Comments
Taking a brief break from their Librem 5 smartphone campaign, there's a new Purism blog post today that explains at length why this summer's Librem laptop shipments were delayed due to a pesky Coreboot bug lasting weeks and what it took to come to a workaround.

Purism has been making a lot of progress with Coreboot on their laptops and their latest laptops have indeed been shipping with Coreboot rather than the old proprietary AMI BIOS.

Before shipping their recent batch of Skylake-powered Librem 13 and Librem 15 laptops with Coreboot, they discovered an issue in their Coreboot image that resulted in the laptops being unbootable. This issue seemingly only happened at certain times and was eventually traced back to being a SATA issue.

Purism's Coreboot developers have yet to come up with a proper solution to the issue, but a workaround that doesn't cause any problems is in place and that's what has been shipping with their latest laptops. They are still working on a formal solution and will release an updated image when that comes. This post also mentions they are working towards fwupd support for making it easy to update Librem laptops' BIOS from the Linux desktop.

If you are interested in a lengthy read about their Coreboot/BIOS debugging and workaround process, see this post.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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