I am in need of a desktop PC made only of Free and Open hardware components.

If I could be sure that such a thing is possible, I'd even be willing to build it myself; however, I can find no guides on Google on how to determine if this motherboard is open, or if that adapter released its firmware source.

I'm particularly interested in hardware that does not impede my ability to install my own firmware. Open hardware schematics are not necessarily a requirement.

How would you go about accomplishing this task?

  • 1
    Your definition of "Free and Open Hardware components" is components that have both (1) open hardware schematics and (2) free software drivers, correct?
    – apsillers
    Jul 13, 2016 at 16:29
  • 1
    @apsillers: Hmm...When you put it that way, I guess it would be "hardware that does not impede my ability to install my own firmware". I'm not sure if open hardware schematics are a necessary part of that. Jul 13, 2016 at 16:33
  • 1
    @NoobSaibot Your question has already got one close vote from someone for being unclear, so I've edited your definition of 'free and open' into your question. Feel free to edit again (or rollback) if I've misinterpreted your position. And, welcome to Open Source.SE.
    – Tim Malone
    Jul 13, 2016 at 21:50
  • 1
    @Ziz it's one thing to not know every legal implication, but this is a recommendation question! People would give two completely different answers depending on whether the licensing of the hardware needs to be considered or not. Jul 13, 2016 at 22:26
  • 5
    I think it's an interesting question. Although not entirely clear, I believe it's clear enough to be answerable. Possible one of those questions where a good answer would point to the question OP would ask if they knew what to ask, but they don't, so they ask the question they asked. ++
    – RubberDuck
    Jul 14, 2016 at 1:39

2 Answers 2


I suggest taking a look at EOMA68 computer cards. They're expected to receive RYF certification, and you can order a desktop housing kit to go with yours.

  • Important precision, this is an ARM architecture...
    – intika
    May 17, 2020 at 8:22

I've just discovered the FSF Guide on Free Hardware. It appears to provide just enough information to make some informed decisions on hardware.

  • 2
    This is in no way a suitable answer for this site. Without the link, your answer is a comment. Don't forget, you can always quote content from another site and include it in your answer.
    – Zizouz212
    Jul 16, 2016 at 20:21
  • The information in that link says its hardware that supports GNU/Linux. It makes no mention about the openness of the hardware itself. Could be a good answer, but needs flushed out a bit.
    – RubberDuck
    Jul 16, 2016 at 22:22
  • This should be token as a recommandation nothing more... a complete hardware review is always required
    – intika
    May 17, 2020 at 8:19

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.