Mainboard Availability and Open Source Release
frame.work
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The Framework Laptop Mainboard is now available in the Framework Marketplace!
Arthur Besse
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7 monatoj

Framework:

  • doesn’t offer Linux preinstalled
  • doesn’t ship fully assembled laptops without Windows (only the “DIY” edition you must assemble yourself can ship without Windows)
  • just now (April 2022, over two years late) finally put up a Linux compatibility page which currently describes Ubuntu 21.10 as “🤔 medium difficulty”
  • doesn’t have a free software BIOS or EC firmware

Meanwhile companies like Purism, System76, and Starlabs are shipping modern laptops with various distros preinstalled, never shipping windows, shipping coreboot, and (in the case of the first two, at least, and especially the first) funding the development of free software.

NFT screenshotter
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87 monatoj

ok? but their laptops are entirely repairable and upgradable down to the CPU. The other 3 just repackage blank laptops with their name and bios on it and call it a day.

krolden
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17 monatoj

The CPU isn’t embedded?

@Looki
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17 monatoj

I imagine it’s the same as with desktops, where a CPU upgrade after a few years also requires a motherboard upgrade anyways, so it’s less of an issue that the CPU is not replacable as a single unit. Also I don’t think there are sockets for laptop CPUs anyway

krolden
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17 monatoj

My five year old x470 board supports up to ryzen 5000 CPUs, but that’s besides the point. There’s very few features that impress me about the framework especiallysince it lacks coreboot and uses an Intel CPU with Intel ME enabled.

https://hackaday.com/2017/12/11/what-you-need-to-know-about-the-intel-management-engine/

@ree
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17 monatoj

There is no free lunch :/

@morrowind
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47 monatoj

Framework wasn’t founded to push free software, but rather repairable hardware. I don’t know what you were expecting.

Plus if you were following them, you would know they had linux info from the beginning, it was just not put in a simple page like this yet.

(And why is it two years late)?

krolden
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27 monatoj

They should go hand in hand since they are supposed to have the same core philosophyy.

krolden
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37 monatoj

And the ‘modular’ features are just USBC adapters in a fancy case. I dont see the appeal.

@morrowind
creator
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57 monatoj

They are swappable ports using thunderbolt. + the screen, bezel, keyboard, touchpad, battery, wifi module, mainboard etc. are basically all easily accessible.

krolden
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27 monatoj

Most of that is already easily swappable on any laptop granted it isn’t soldered to the board. Not to mention most of that is stuff you would never really need to swap out unless it broke. The keyboard and trackpad on most lenovo laptops ive worked on come out with two or three screws. Its not a big deal to work on.

Framework seems to be solving very few actual problems with mobile computers. The USBC adapter crap just seems like a gimmick to sell computerst to people who apparently need to change their ram and keypads all the time.

They’re not doing anything really interesting especially when it comes to modular GPUs inlaptosps as the only modern spec for that seems to be mxm and honestly I haven’t seen any current gen laptops with an mxm socket.

@morrowind
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37 monatoj

You clearly haven’t bought an ultrabook recently.

Not to mention most of that is stuff you would never really need to swap out unless it broke.

That’s the whole point

krolden
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7 monatoj

I haven’t bought any but ive worked on plenty. Yes some aredifficult to work on but the main issue is part availability which you’ll run into on any modern portable. Its nice framework seems to want to solve that but adding more parts that can fail is not the answer.The pro:con ratio isn’t enough for me to recommend this laptop to anyone especially normal users. Maybe if they supported coreboot along with plans to support different architectures down the line but I have yet to hear anything from framework suggesting they have any plans for any of that. Adding swappable connector things is even more pointless these days when a USBC/thunderbolt dock makes them pointless obsolete.

Anyone I know buying a new laptop I always tell them to spend the extra hundred bucks on the extended accidental protection warranty, its entirely worth it.

@morrowind
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17 monatoj

but the main issue is part availability which you’ll run into on any modern portable

Do you mean like the current supply shortages or finding proprietary parts? If it’s the latter, then framework does solve it.

Its nice framework seems to want to solve that but adding more parts that can fail is not the answer.

I don’t understand this, the laptop has no more parts than a normal laptop, they’re just easier to change and repair.

The pro:con ratio isn’t enough for me to recommend this laptop to anyone especially normal users.

What are the problematic cons here? I have found it to be very competitive with other laptops in the price range, and that’s before you consider it’s reparability and environmental aspects.

Maybe if they supported coreboot along with plans to support different architectures down the line

I don’t see how these are useful for normal users.

Adding swappable connector things is even more pointless these days when a USBC/thunderbolt dock makes them pointless.

I think about this the other way around, since framework has these expansion cards, you no longer have to bother with dongles and docks. Even apple of all companies realized this and brought back a multitude of ports to the macbook, though of course, you can’t choose them like you can on framework. There’s no particular downside to consumer for this. At worst, they’re just a another part that can be replaced when they fail.

krolden
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7 monatoj

Do you mean like the current supply shortages or finding proprietary parts? If it’s the latter, then framework does solve it.

Sorry but trackpads and keyboards don’t fail enough to justify making them ‘easier to swap’ (which is already easy enough in a lot of systems) and memory/storage are just as easy to swap as in any other system (granted they’re not soldered on)

I don’t understand this, the laptop has no more parts than a normal laptop, they’re just easier to change and repair.

what? it adds a bunch of those usb-c/tb modules. That’s a bunch of extra parts that only work in the framework laptop. There’s plenty of usb-c/tb adapters in the world already. No need to make yet another adapter, especially if it’s only compatible with framework notebooks.

What are the problematic cons here? I have found it to be very competitive with other laptops in the price range, and that’s before you consider it’s reparability and environmental aspects.

By pros I mean anything really new and interesting. By cons I mean things like security vulnerabilities that are baked into most modern laptops. I don’t see how framework is any more environmentally friendly than anything else, it just has not been in existence for enough time to see exactly how long they last.

I don’t see how these are useful for normal users.

because many normal users don’t know what’s good for them, especially regarding security.

I think about this the other way around, since framework has these expansion cards, you no longer have to bother with dongles and docks. Even apple of all companies realized this and brought back a multitude of ports to the macbook, though of course, you can’t choose them like you can on framework. There’s no particular downside to consumer for this. At worst, they’re just a another part that can be replaced when they fail.

this feels like a step backwards IMO. the best thing about the usb-c/tb standard is that it works with a multitude of EXTERNAL devices.

when you say framework will make less waste, i implore you to explain how this isn’t wasteful

edit: it looks like they’re going to be implementing coreboot at some point, which is always a good thing.

Previous experience with coreboot, Tianocore, Zephyr, or other open source firmware or RTOS platforms. https://jobs.lever.co/framework/4c33ea5e-5580-4eaa-ac84-0b2651caf76b

@morrowind
creator
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07 monatoj

I feel you’re really overestimating the how willing and able normal people are to make repairs on today’s anti-consumer laptops. Most people will just have a laptop for a few years at which point enough things will break that they’ll just buy a new one.

Where framework comes in is it makes it possible for normal people, so when screen/touchpad/keyboard/ram etc. do finally go dead they can replace them, they can easily upgrade storage/ram/cpu etc instead of having to buy an entirely new device and so keep it around for far longer. Better for the environment and the consumer.

I also don’t understand your hate of expansion cards. As I said, if you’d rather use dongles and stuff, go ahead, but most people do find it a hassle and most devices don’t use thunderbolt/usb-c.

I don’t think there’s an issue of buying them either, they’re one of most prominent thing framework sells and they have also open sourced all schematics and stuff. I’ve already seen some enthusiasts design and sell some cards, and once framework gets in the hands of enough people, I bet some larger third-party companies will start doing so as well. And that’s still better than other laptops in which if you dent a port or something, it’s pretty much useless forever. In fact with framework, even if you break all your cards and all ability to purchase more mysteriously disappears, you can still use the internal thunderbolt ports.

@americanwaste
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7 monatoj

It’s listed as “medium difficulty” due to newer hardware in the laptop not being fully compatible with the kernel shipped in that old version of Ubuntu. I believe 22.04 is compatible out of the box.

I had to use a Debian sid nightly installer to set up Debian on my laptop, no big deal for me but for someone new to Linux I can see why that might be off-putting.

@rysiek@szmer.info
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58 monatoj

Amazeballs.

@angarabebesi
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48 monatoj

Nice!

Sr Estegosaurio
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37 monatoj

That’s cool. I want to see they opening even more stuff.

@projjalm
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3 monatoj

deleted by creator

@morrowind
creator
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-17 monatoj

It’s easier to start at this price point. If it is successful, you will likely see cheaper versions. Nothing like what we have now however, as making cheap throwaway laptops is against their mission.

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