v24.06: The One With Over 250 Devices

June 16, 2024 9 min. read

postmarketOS running on a laptop and a phone, displaying the meadow wallpaper on the devices and in circles in the background. At the bottom are logos of GNOME, KDE, Phosh and SXMO.

This release is geared mainly towards Linux enthusiasts. We are working hard on stability improvements and automated testing, but if you expect Android or iOS levels of polish, then this is not for you yet.

Introduction

People are interested in running Linux on their devices for various reasons. We don't force you to set up an account on first boot. You are not urged to store all your private data in a cloud that you don't control. We don't pre-install or recommend software that tries to extract as much attention or money from you as possible. We don't follow AI hype trends that violate your privacy even further, implemented at the cost of a high environmental impact. What we do believe in is free software, giving you control over your device, and allowing you to use it way past the original vendor's support cycle!

a cellphone with a broken screen is lying on a dirty concrete floor next to a solar charger
From Arne's Mastodon thread. Thank you for letting us show this in the release blog post!

On the note of upcycling, we had a lot of device ports in postmarketOS for a long time that could only be accessed through the bleeding edge version. But for the first time with v24.06, we have added most of them to the stable release. With a lot of them you can only barely boot Linux, but still it allows for some amazing use-cases:

i'm really excited to show https://compost.party to the world! it's a web server running on an old, broken phone, getting energy from the sun using one of those portable solar chargers that you may also have lying around.

it's a real oddity and a real beauty

Software Stack

As always we target the most recent Alpine release. In case of v24.06 it is the excellent Alpine Linux 3.20.

User Interfaces (UIs)

Notable Changes

Meadow wallpaper, light and dark version, with the title and author Dika Setya
  • All UIs now feature the beautiful Meadow wallpaper by @dikasetyaprayogi, who also made the header image for this blog post, who's already made so many more amazing wallpapers that we can now switch to a new one with every postmarketOS release! Find previous wallpapers in the wiki. Thanks @dikasetyaprayogi for your amazing artwork, @stacyharper for adjusting Sxmo, @PureTryOut and @ollieparanoid for adjusting other UIs!

Devices

Sway window manager running two terminals on the left and firefox on the right. Firefox shows the wiki page for the Thinkpad X13s, the laptop in the photo. Terminals show pmbootstrap output and some misc. notes.
@craftyguy on the Thinkpad X13s:
"Doing some #postmarketOS development on a laptop running #postmarketOS. Is this allowed??"

Main And Community Categories

The amount of devices in main and community has been increased to 50 (from 45 since v23.12).

Among the new device ports are two generic ports: Generic x86_64 can be used on pretty much any PC or laptop and is now used by several people to develop for postmarketOS from postmarketOS, and Nvidia Tegra armv7 that can be used for multiple Tegra 2/3/4 devices such as various Asus Transformers, the Google Nexus 7 (2012), LG Optimus Vu, Microsoft Surface RT and WEXLER Tab 7t.

Thanks to all of our amazing device porters, and everybody who contributed!

Testing Category

pmbootstrap init showing devices available in v24.06

For the first time we have included devices from the "testing" category to a stable release of postmarketOS. 211 devices to be precise! As mentioned in the introduction, the quality of these ports varies from being able to barely boot to having most features working. Still it allows to run an up-to-date Linux distribution on old hardware, making your old phone at least as useful as a Raspberry Pi, but with a built-in battery.

To use these devices, build your own image with pmbootstrap. The binary packages from the v24.06 repository will be used, meaning you don't need to compile the Linux kernel or anything else. You can select your device during pmbootstrap init as shown in the screenshot. For very few of these we even have pre-build images.

The list of devices would be quite long, therefore refer to the device/testing directory. Find supported functionality per device in the wiki. Thanks to @Newbyte for fixing several kernels that were not compiling any more, to @ollieparanoid for including this in the stable release, and of course to all the amazing people that made these ports in the first place!

Device/UI Testing And Known Issues

A huge thank you to device maintainers and the testing team, and people who spontaneously decided to take part in testing this new release (#2861) and fixing bugs right before finalizing it! If you would like to join the fun next time, add yourself to the Testing Team.

While testing, the following issues were reported. They may not affect all users. If you are affected, then consider leaving a note in the related issue about it, especially if you have more information or could help with fixing it:

How To Get It

New Installation

For new installs, see download and make sure to read the wiki page for your device.

Upgrade

For existing installations, see the upgrade to a newer postmarketOS release wiki article.

Recommended manual steps after upgrading:

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A big thanks to everybody who contributed to postmarketOS, to Alpine or to any of the numerous upstream components we use — without you this would not be possible! <3

We would also like to thank NLnet and NGI Zero Core for funding most of the infrastructure and maintenance work that went into this release. NLnet is funding a lot of great free software projects, including quite a few projects in the Linux Mobile world. If you would like to get your project funded, consider applying for a grant!

And what's next?

If you appreciate the work we're doing on postmarketOS, and want to support us, consider joining our OpenCollective.