Should we have a mobile /Cell telephone section?

Please forgive my ignorance on this, but I have noticed one or two questions relating to mobile/cell telephone use by members of our community.

Personally I don’t like them, but it seems that they’re a necessary evil these days. I have had to get one as we have changed from copper to fibre and that meant not having a landline any more.

While not wanting to add to many things to the boards and not wanting to use the section for advertising. I was wondering what the community things feels about having a section for mobile/cell telephones? My reason for thinking this might be an idea is so that those of us old folk and perhaps not so old folk could ask questions and get help and those who know about such things could tell us about things thus helping to further expand the community knowledge base. I also think there are some Linux Distros now that can be used on them if I have read that correctly.

So over to you peeps what do you think? Needed or not ?


Dandy, you make a good point, but I think we should wait until there’s a Linux-based phone in actual production. Failing that, I’ve never seen a coherent how-to on converting existing phones to Linux.

There were many, but almost all failed to this date.

That is because phones are extremely versatile and most phones have their very own quirks. Nothing about phones is streamlined. You have to treat each phone like a new baby, if you want to change its core. That’s why you can’t have a single coherent How-To as it always can only apply to a single phone or maybe 2.

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Last I heard, the Pine phone wasn’t in production. They’re apparently bogged down in some teething issues. The possibility of the $20 Pine watch is exciting, though.

I have a Moto 5 phone that I’ve replaced, but it’s still alive and amusing to use as a mini-tablet. I’d root it and Linux it if I could dig up a proven method. But I’ll keep looking.

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I’ve tried Ubuntu Touch on my Nexus 5 - it was next to useless… Just allowing SSH access seemed like a hellishly complex process…

Dang! MaruOS (Android 6 which runs Debian Jessie XFCE in a chroot) on Nexus 5 works way better, functions as a phone, can access Google Play store (or less nosy alternatives like FDroid) and it lets me SSH to my phone over wifi - and with a slimport / HDMI adaptor, I can hook it up to a monitor and use the XFCE environment. That’s what it’s running now - I just keep on charge 24/7…

I’d still be using the Nexus as my daily driver handset if it it had more storage and longer battery life…

As it is - my phone has to be able to :

  • make / receive phone calls (that basic feature seemed broken on Ubuntu Touch on Nexus 5)
  • make / receive SMS messages
  • connect to WiFi (and run work and personal email clients)
  • play FLAC audio over bluetooth
  • install a few basic card games
  • last a working day between recharges
  • expandable storage

Samsung DEX running Linux seemed like a promising idea - but - the gotcha here for me is I CANNOT STAND Samsung, bloated with rubbish and vastly insanely overpriced… Had a really bad experience with a boot loop on a Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 (only thing that fixed it was a factory reset - and I lost ALL my data on it - i.e. hundreds of sketches).

So - I recently replaced my positively ancient Galaxy Note 3, which was bit of a homemade Frankstenstein’s monster, it was a Chinese model from ebay, but with the motherboard from an Australian market model from a Note 3 I’d had that got smashed when it fell out of the pocket of my tracksuit pants when I was riding my Harley to the shops…

So I recently replaced it with a Nokia 4.2, which I kinda hate, but at least its running Android One, which is about as close as you can get to a Nexus (i.e. no vendor bloatware) and much easier to update than rubbish from the likes of Samsung…

The Nokia 4.2 seems to be able to go at least a couple of days between charges… it’s okay… I kinda hate phones, but it fultulls all the functionality I listed above…

As for Pine? I had a REALLY bad experience with their Kickstarter… I bought two of the 2 GB models with Wifi/BT - and never got satisfactory performance from them… utter rubbish… and I kinda hate the admins on their forum - one of whom I wanted to punch in the face… So I’d never trust anything from those hacks… their kickstarter blurb was “World’s first $16 supercomputer” - what a joke!

If I had a tad more money - I might have gone for a Purism handset… but I can’t really afford $6-700+ (AUD) for a phone…

Another Linux handset option is Sailfish OS - but you have to jump through hoops to be able to buy a license for it (e.g. fudge your country to be in Europe, if you’re in Australia) and only works properly on a few selectedSony handsets… I think you can buy handsets in some Latin American countries with Sailfish preloaded…


Dang! I wrote too soon!

Everytime I hook up my Nokia 4.2 over USB to my Linux laptop - the whole Linux O/S “stalls” or freezes - everying stops… until I unplug it…

So that’s Phone and Linux related… never happened with my old pezzo di merda Note 3…

i tend to agree with @wgberninghausen that at present there just doesn’t seem to be much to cover that is actually foss-related beyond what projects like f-droid have to offer.

that is a hefty price tag for what sounds like less than 7 bills worth of hardware, but hopefully it is successful and inspires others/proves there is a market for such options.

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So it’s $700 USD? That would be closer to $1000 by the time it shipped to Oz…

minus that whole $1 because !pricepoints! sell themselves! :money_mouth_face:

to clarify, i did not purchase one. i just wanted to see the actual checkout total.

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i had two older lg stylo smart phones that i used to run boinc manager. since they were number crunching all day, i kept them both charging 24/7 as well. one day the older one had a weird bulge in the back of the case (i probably should have taken that off since i wasn’t actively carrying it around. hindsight being 20/20 and all). when i popped it open to investigate, the battery had started to swell.

i can’t definitively say the swelling was from being plugged in all the time. this article mentions a few different reasons that might fit my circumstances. i just thought i would share the tip/warning/thought to keep an eye out :slight_smile:

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Hmmm… Nexus 5 is actually really a rebadged LG phone - can’t remember which one…

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Hi guys.
I own several smartphones which I flashed with LinargeOS and without Google services, just F-Droid as market.
Runs very well (for me), no major issues.
What I want to state on the topic:
If there was a section for phones/tablets/whatever, I could probably help with some hints for flashing/rooting/using, but as I always say, “I’m a somewhat advanced user, not a pro”.


Thanks for your reply. Some of us are just moving to them now and know very little about them. I don’t understand them at all for example and even those who have them probably have questions etc about them, which is why I started this thread.

Which is good, as being “pro” just means that you’re being paid for your work. I’ve seen a lot of “advanced users” that easily were a lot more competent than someone paid. In some industries paid workers are much worse, like in customer service over the phone, where they take 2 minutes of their non-educated time trying to solve your issue ASAP, whereas an advanced user actually takes their time explaining stuff and to solve the issue more competently and broadly.

The protagonist of the following story is an example of what I am talking about:

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Now, I immediately thought that the OP was calling for a mobile/cell phone section in order to see which phones behaved with Mint when coupled up to do such things as synching/backing up data. Having had problems in getting some phones recognised in the past by Linux as a whole (Nokia E5 for one) I would welcome this section.

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Android is Linux too. So think valid the your idea. :iphone:

That’s like calling iOS “FreeBSD”…

Android might use the Linux kernel - but it’s not GNU/Linux…


Well that is very technical, because some say it is and some it isn’t, but let’s not get side tracked down that minefield shall we. It is my understanding that many more smart phones know have the capability to have Linux on them, if they don’t already which is why I asked this question.

just checked my Nexus 5 - huge bulge in the back and almost too hot to touch - oh well… I do have a spare battery for it… but will probably happen again…

Your suggestion to have this phone section is much needed not least to post warnings to inform the less tech savvy - Hey; Me Too!
With about 8,000,000,000 mobile phone users around the planet Blissfully Unaware of the insecurities and invasion of their privacy on a continual basis thanks to S35, Goolag and many others; some have started to reject this and perhaps a 1,000 of these have joined eFoundation to search for something as a means to getting off the radar of USA Inc, UK-GCHQ, Corporate Advert Inc. tracking apps etc. They would do better here at it’sFOSS in my humble opinion.
There is the saying “Ignorance is Bliss” – to counter this ignorance I for one would like them to get all the information here as a “One Stop Shop” and not being mislead or having informative topics concerning security and privacy censored or being shut down on a false pretense to stifle open debate followed by the roll-out of cheerleaders to further the pretense that everything is OK with e. Not least the intimidation and false accusations from admin. When you complain to the top the silence is deafening as is the silence regarding questions asked of eFoundation by Infosec.

/e/‘s Apps store uses to get applications. However, nobody knows the operator of, and their privacy policy doesn’t comply with current GDPR requirements. Moreover, some users raised legal concerns regarding the applications that seem to originate from F-Droid and APKPure.

Leaking personal data collected by Google’s radar and many others is a complex issue and is valued at many billions of £, Euro or dollars and surpasses that of US motor manufactures and Hollywood mega budgets so one may get a feel of the problem and the vested interests of many participants ECorp and Fairphone too. (very tiny part) The response thus far from eFound is not too good - to the point where it seems to be orchestrated and formulaic. This surely must be a bleak day for the FOSS community – FREE Open Source Software – Free as in FREE SPEECH not free beer.
ps this is just the tip of the iceberg

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