Pinephone setup – the more stable version with Phosh

If you have purchased the Pinephone you may have noted the very buggy issues with the default install. Unfortunately the Manjaro Linux with Plasma mobile has some very odd issues, keeps requesting updates, and is quite buggy. The Phosh (GTK) system is much more usable and uses the same Phosh startup shell which makes it work in similar manner as the more expensive Librem5 phone, and can be flashed to the Pinephone quite easily:

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Re-flashing the Librem Phone with Byzantium

If you just received a Librem 5 you probably have the latest software – including the new software that has a (mostly) working photos app, gps and a basic maps app! Development has continued on these devices but if you have one of the previous preorders you probably have been waiting on new updates and only getting a few standard package updates and no new apps 🙁

If you want to upgrade the phone in this case you need to re-flash it and wipe it with the newer version. Note this deletes everything and starts anew!

Their instructions here should be fine for some, but only if you have a very very new Ubuntu based system. If you have an older one such as Ubuntu 20.04 then you can get set up as shown below.

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GTK Choice box with Glade and Python

There may be times you have a simple choice or listing in a GTK list box – for this example, in choosing a serial connection or other device. Glade is a good way to build an application window easily with an interface to build in to your app on Linux desktop, Ubuntu or Librem phone or other Linux based phones. I was able to use this to create a Winlink user interface for the previous tutorial to call up the Pat interface.

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Pat + Winlink with handheld radio and handheld Mobilinkd TNC

A previous posting showed how to set up Winlink through basic internet (Telnet). Internet/Wifi may or may not be available in any emergency, however, so it is important to be able to work Winlink over a VHF/UHF radio – which is the main benefit of WINLINK over e-mail, after all. To get this working you will need a radio, a TNC, and computer with the Pat or Winlink program. For my test I use a Yaesu FT-70 handheld, Mobilinkd TNC3, and Pat on a Linux computer.

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Let your voice be heard for Librem Phone/Pinephone Apps!

As you may have noted if you have recently upgraded to Pinephone or Librem Phone, there are currently some missing spots as far as good and well built mobile apps for the platform. While this affords great opportunity for the first folks to build apps to profit from this growing segment, we also should encourage local app makers to fix their apps to work on Linux/Librem Phone!

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Purism price increase scheduled for end of June

If you have been thinking of buying the new Librem phone now may be the best time to do so! The price will be increasing $100 according to a recent posting on their blog. And what better way to celebrate independence day than a device independent of many of the major tech giants’ updates? You can even buy a Librem phone that is built in USA… at over double the cost, however.

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