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Libreboot 20230319 released

From: Leah Rowe
Subject: Libreboot 20230319 released
Date: Sun, 19 Mar 2023 14:13:27 +0000

Hello everyone,

I'm CC'ing this to several organisations. I ask that you all please
spread the news about this, in whatever way you can:

Libreboot had a sudden new software release today. I'm Leah Rowe, the
founder and lead developer of Libreboot. You can read the release
announcement here:

Libreboot provides boot firmware for supported x86/ARM machines,
starting a bootloader that then loads your operating system. It
replaces proprietary BIOS/UEFI firmware on x86 machines, and provides
an *improved* configuration on ARM-based chromebooks supported (U-Boot
bootloader, instead of Google's depthcharge bootloader). On x86
machines, the GRUB and SeaBIOS coreboot payloads are officially
supported, provided in varying configurations per machine. You can find
the list of supported hardware in the Libreboot documentation.

Brief summary of changes

I’ve been very busy these last couple months, so there have been less
changes in Libreboot lately. I’m expecting to have a lot more time
throughout the coming summer, which I plan to make full use of for the
next Libreboot release.

The changes can be summarised, thus:

* **LIBRE** raminit code now available, on Haswell boards (ThinkPad
T440p and ThinkPad W541). This is using patches from Angel Pons (hell
on coreboot IRC), that are currently still in review on coreboot
master. The *old* configs that use `mrc.bin` for raminit are still
available aswell, so this release contains ROMs with libre raminit
*and* ROMs with blob raminit. The reasons are explained below.

* **FIXED S3 suspend/resume on Haswell (T440p/W541)** - but only on
configs that use `mrc.bin`. The images with libre MRC still have broken
S3. S3 suspend/resume is what people refer to as *sleep mode* and *wake
from sleep*.

* **Force console display mode in GRUB**: This corresponds to the
  setting `GRUB_TERMINAL=console` that you might find in
`/etc/default/grub` on a Linux machine. In Libreboot, switching
VGA/text modes is unsupported, it's stuck in one mode until Linux/BSD
Kernel Mode Setting takes over. With this change to GRUB, GRUB's VGA
mode switching is disabled. This might make a few Linux distro
installer menus work a bit nicer.

* **New ports:** Lenovo T530 and W530 thinkpads added.

* **Bump coreboot revision**: February 2023 revision for most x86
boards, including Haswell (T440p/W541) when `mrc.bin` is in use;
Haswell (T440p/W541) setups that don't use `mrc.bin` (and instead use
Angel`s libre replacement code), it's currently based on coreboot from
mid-2022 because that's what Angel's as yet unmerged patches are based
on (relative to coreboot's master branch)

* **Bump GRUB revision:** February 2023 revision now, on all boards.

* **Bump SeaBIOS revision:** February 2023 revision now, on all

* `grub.cfg`: 5 seconds boot delay, instead of 10 seconds.

* GM45 thinkpads: default to 256MB VRAM instead, which is more stable
than the previous setting of 352MB. Many reports from users indicated
performance issues when the 352MB config was used.

* Stricter handling of exit status in lbmk. More errors result in a hard
  exit than before, preventing the build process from erroneously

* Fixed fault checks in the Libreboot build system, when checking which
  coreboot utilities are needed (e.g. cbfstool, ifdtool)

* util/nvmutil: Massively re-factored the codebase, making it more
efficient and *correct*.

Thank you for reading!

Leah Rowe <>

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