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Re: A challenge for community to go beyond what's already rule

From: Jean Louis
Subject: Re: A challenge for community to go beyond what's already rule
Date: Fri, 20 Nov 2020 20:24:00 +0300
User-agent: Mutt/2.0 (3d08634) (2020-11-07)

* <> [2020-11-20 19:46]:
>    Hey there!
>    Although I do support this kind of initiative (of new Libreboot laptop
>    stores), and I am a supporter of libreboot / coreboot as well as Free
>    Libre / Open Source Hardware, I would like to ask you all here:
>    Couldn't we have more popular prices? What do we have to do to boost
>    more popular projects?

Here I am, European in Uganda, writing from Kampala, and I can say
that cheapest price for T400 here is about 400,000 Ugandan shillings
which is equivalent to some US $110 and not even close to the good
configuration that is offered on

Normally one needs better battery, how many batteries are delivered
with Those laptops that cost US $110 are simply used
and not refurbished. Unspoken from fact that their BIOS is non-free
and they do not have just any guarantee (maybe 1 day guarantee). how I see it offer 2 years guarantee. 

£398 for T400 delivered from UK, with 2 years guarantee with free
technical support via email, and a 2 year warranty for all
products, with two 2 batteries is what we say in Germany ein echter
Schnäpchen oder really good deal!
>    I mean, it's awesome the new store, but after opening it, I felt the
>    same disappointment from before. I still wait for more popular & fair
>    options. Who can & will pay for a retro with such prices? I can't, so
>    seeing such stores feels like a distant dream. offers service as laptops are refurbished with free
BIOS. It is quite possible for you to purchase somewhere same type of
laptop and liberate BIOS yourself. That also takes time, effort and
time and effort is value equivalent to money. You may wait long time
until you get the right product.

I have T400 with me here, and T410 as well. But none of them is
liberated as I am in Uganda and do not have flashing devices. How long
time I need to wait to come back to Europe and find my personal way to
liberate them? It is really not easy.

>    I am from a foreign country, with its money devalued in comparison to
>    your currencies. These prices are for rich gringos, for your own people
>    and not for a broader community.

What I can suggest is that you follow libreboot instructions and try
with your local technicians to help you with flashing. Process is for
non-technicians risky.

>    The community, I guess, lacks very much options for getting popular
>    Librebooted ThinkPads. How to help expanding free software and hardware
>    in scenarios like this?

By DIY or doing it yourself.

>    These prices are over, so we will never support your stores
>    because we can't. We can just try to do it ourselves, paying fair
>    prices getting used pieces (just as yours) from people that
>    doesn't know that there are companies selling it for much more
>    because it is "libreboot".

That is harsh. I understand that price expectation due to being in
different country, but in this world there are just few companies like making such as service. Do you know how much one
non-physical idea can move in this world? Everything.
carries idea forward for free hardware, there are just few such

If you cannot buy the laptop yourself then make a deal, you can
forward few clients to and ask for bonuses, why not?
That way you may earn yourself a laptop.

>    Even when it comes to offering the service of installing Libreboot or
>    whatever, I just see obscene prices.

I cannot share that viewpoint and it is exaggerated to say so

>    Where are we going? Do we want to make things more popular and make the
>    whole strong, or do we want a small community of FSF members and
>    Librebooted laptop owners?! is quite a good service for the lowest price among
the few on the planet. Project supports financially the libreboot
development. FSF members also support FSF, money is always involved,
without money services cannot be provided. GNU is hosting free
software for decades and somebody must pay money for that. Software
was never free in the sense of money even it is free in sense of

What you can do is to complain to your local politicans and hardware
suppliers and demand free hardware and free bios, that way in long
term you can achieve the effect.

For time being you could try to liberate one Thinkpad in your country.


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