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  1. Just wanted to open a discussion in regards to building a somewhat secure PC or laptop in respect to privacy of the business/user. With everything slowly becoming closed source and with end users having no access to control the security of their systems (E:G - Spretre, Meltdown, Thunderbolt exploits, Intel Management Engine etc). I am very interested in building a computer that runs on open-source system software such as Linux, and has full access to CPU firmware code with features such as Libreboot or Coreboot. This has been something I have been researching for a while. Would be very interested in hearing from others with such a setup or also any ideas on the above topic. Any ideas in regards to implementing such system or just brainstorming on how to build a secure setup would be great. Im talking about open-source software, hardware switches, manually removing components such as microphones / cameras to prevent three letter agencies stockpiling data and hoarding it in fusion centers. For a bit of context, please watch this Documentary. Any feedback on systems by companies such as System76 and Purism and the like would be phenomenal! Thanks in advance!
  2. System76, the Denver-based Linux PC manufacturer and developer of Pop OS, has some stellar news for those of us who prefer our laptops a little more open. Later this month the company will begin shipping two of their laptop models with its Coreboot-powered open source firmware. The Darter Pro laptop System76 Beginning today, System76 will start taking pre-orders for both the Galago Pro and Darter Pro laptops. The systems will ship out later in October, and include the company’s Coreboot-based open source firmware which was previously teased at the 2019 Open Source Firmware Conference. (Coreboot, formerly known as LinuxBIOS, is a software project aimed at replacing proprietary firmware found in most computers with a lightweight firmware designed to perform only the minimum number of tasks necessary to load and run a modern 32-bit or 64-bit operating system.) What’s so great about ripping out the proprietary firmware included in machines like this and replacing it with an open alternative? To begin with, it’s leaner. System76 claims that users can boot from power off to the desktop 29% faster with its Coreboot-based firmware. Open Source Firmware is now available on these System76 laptops It’s also been stripped of unnecessary features like execution environments, resulting in firmware – and by extension an entire system – that is less vulnerable. Open source firmware was the last spark to power our journey towards creating entirely free and open technology. Like the universe, we are ever-expanding into an open source future with ongoing progress in hardware, software, and firmware, and we’re excited to see where our journey goes from here. System76 Spokesperson This move continues the company’s steady march toward offering open source software and hardware (see: the Thelio daughterboard). It is also working on a graphical firmware manager to benefit more than just System76 and Pop OS users: System76 Launches A Graphical Firmware Manager Compatible With LVFS, All Ubuntu And Debian Distros About The Darter Pro and Galago Pro: Both of these laptops can be kitted out with 10th-Generation Intel CPUs (specifically the i5-10210U and the i7-10510U), and both have glare-resistant matte 1080p IPS displays. Beginning at $949, the Galago Pro features an all-aluminum chassis, a wealth of connectivity options including HDMI, DisplayPort to USB-C and Thunderbolt, and can be configured with up to 32GB of RAM and up to 6TB of storage space. The Darter Pro, meanwhile, can be built out with 32GB of RAM and up to 2TB of storage, and features up to 10 hours of battery life. As you’re reading this, both machines should be up for pre-order now with System76’s Coreboot-powered open source firmware. Will Coreboot Ship On Other System76 Machines? Don Watkins at OpenSource.com asked this question, and System76 responded by saying: “Yes. Long term, System76 is working to open source all aspects of the computer. Thelio Io, the controller board in the Thelio desktop, is both open hardware and open firmware. This is a long journey but we're picking up speed. It's been less than a year since the our open hardware Thelio desktop was released and we're now producing two laptops with System76 Open Firmware.” What About A System76 Machine I Already Own? I asked the company about the possibility of users installing the Coreboot open firmware on their existing System76 machines. Here’s the official answer: "At this time, open firmware will only be available on the new Galago (galp4) and Darter Pro (darp6). System76 is looking into the ability to bring open firmware to our our previous models but we do not know when or if this will be an option. Should it become available, we will update our customers on these products with a firmware update using our firmware manager to move them to open firmware." Source
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