Article published by: Leah Rowe in Canoe Leah Mode™
Date of publication: 3 November 2023
This new release, Canoeboot 20231103, released today 3 November 2023, is based on the Canoeboot 20231101 release - no Libreboot changes have been imported, in this release. The previous Canoeboot release was Canoeboot 20231101, released on 1 November 2023.
Canoeboot 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. It provides an automated build system for the configuration and installation of coreboot ROM images, making coreboot easier to use for non-technical people. You can find the list of supported hardware in Canoeboot documentation.
Canoeboot’s main benefit is higher boot speed, better security and more customisation options compared to most proprietary firmware. As a libre software project, the code can be audited, and coreboot does regularly audit code. The other main benefit is freedom to study, adapt and share the code, a freedom denied by most boot firmware, but not Canoeboot! Booting Linux/BSD is also well supported.
Canoeboot is maintained in parallel with Libreboot, and by the same developer, Leah Rowe, who maintains both projects; Canoeboot implements the GNU Free System Distribution Guideline as policy, whereas Libreboot implements its own Binary Blob Reduction Policy.
There have been no code changes whatsoever, on any of the current builds, but a major oversight has been corrected.
Specifically, some binary blobs were overlooked by accident, in the previous release and the one before that. The following binary blobs were present in the last two releases, but have been deleted in today’s release:
Thanks go to Craig Topham, who is the Copyright and Licensing Associate at the Free Software Foundation; you can find his entry on the FSF staff page. Craig is the one who reported these.
The Canoeboot 20231026 and 20231101 release tarballs will not be altered, but errata has now been added to the announcement pages for those releases, to let people know of the above issue.
Those files, listed above, have been removed in today’s release.
All of the following are believed to boot, but if you have any issues, please contact the Canoeboot project. They are:
You can find this release on the downloads page. At the time of this announcement, some of the rsync mirrors may not have it yet, so please check another one if your favourite one doesn’t have it.
This file was also overlooked, and is still present in the release tarball:
This has now been removed, in the Canoeboot git repository (
cbmk.git), and this file will absent, in the next release after Canoeboot 20231107. Thanks go to Denis Carikli who reported this. The patch to fix it is here:
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