Long term use of Librem laptops - Are they a good option?

I’m thinking of getting myself a Librem 14 to use for my daily driver while running Qubes. Does anyone have experience using Librem laptops? How long do they last? How well do they run Qubes in terms of speed, battery life, etc?

I’ve heard Purism uses lots of cheap parts for their laptops so I’m just a little concerned about the quality of their laptops. I’ve read it’s not uncommon for a laptop to have a defect or having to replace something like a battery after a few months. Is anyone able to speak on the quality of their laptops, specifically after some long-term use?

Hi!

I just submitted a HCL report for my Librem 14 you can hop over the the HCL section in the forum to have a look.

Short version: best qubes laptop I’ve had.

Long version
Only had it for a few weeks but it has at least survived a vibration test of travelling 80 kilometers in a bicycle wagon =)

Comparing a 10th gen Intel with 40Gb ram and my old Lenovo t430s (third generation intel) is a little bit unfair.
Old one had a Good SSD and 16GB ram.

Safe the librem is a LOT faster.
5x faster bootup time, near instant VM clones and generally everything just feels great to work with.

I’ve been compiling software and generally doing some intensive stuff.
Burning though CPU cycles quite heavily and when you max out 6 cores with their 12 threads the fan noise is quite high pitched.

The first day I had it it was truly annoying but the thermal paste or something started to meld properly so unless I completely max it out the noise is now normal for a laptop.

If you run a normal desktop OS you get 6-10 hours out of the librem 14 mixed use.
As with all laptop running qubes, it generally brings the battery life down to around quarter of a normal OS.

Normal Usage like surfing the web ~5VMs
around 3-4 hours

Heavy usage
15+ VMs, IDEs, dev work, docker containers. 3 browsers for different contexts, compiling software etc.

The above gives me around 1.5hours.

Security does come with its drawbacks.

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when you said 5x boot time faster, how long it takes ? in minute, mine almost take 1-2 min to boot up.

@hanabi We also have a related thread for comparing the VM boot time. Would be nice if Librem 14 was there too.

Happy user of Librem 15v3 here with 32GB RAM. Works fine for a few years, survived many travels and small falls. Battery life was about three hours until something has broken and it does not charge now until I reboot (looks like a software issue though.) Suspend, WiFi etc. work flawlessly.

Some people reported that the hinge gets broken on those laptops after some time (didn’t happen to me). AFAIK Purism improved their design for 14v1.

The link: HCL - Librem 14 v1.

Maybe my old lenovo was in need of some tweaking, that one took ~4 minutes total.

I did a few speed runs booting my laptop up and my standing record was 52 seconds.

~15sec to get to and complete hardware attestation with the librem key (think anti evil maid).
Just wait for the blinking led to go green and hit enter.

the rest is a 20-30 char FDE password to be typed and then waiting for sys-net and sys-usb to boot up before the login prompt pops up.

my work system76 laptop running ubuntu boots in 4 seconds flat with encryption turned off but peace of mind still costs time even with the librem 14 =)

So if your’e considering a upgrade, in all fairness, it should mainly be because you actually need more power for your app VMs.

You can expect a quicker bootup time when upgrading from a older laptop but it isnt really worth the price.
Most of the speedup probably comes from the faster NVME SSD then anything else.

Vm boot is fast, just from star pc > grub menu (automatically skip) > disk password > login user > desktop. it would take 1-2 mins.