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Prerequisites for Heads

Required equipment

To install Heads on a physical device, you will need:

  • Supported motherboard or laptop (see below)
  • A heads compatible USB security dongle (see below)
  • A heads compatible storage device for your public GPG key (USB flash drive)

If your device requires external flashing (see below), you will also need:

  • SPI Programmer: ch341a programmer or raspberry pi or bus pirate (ch341a is recommended for new users and can be found almost anywhere.
  • Wires and a clip SOIC8 to connect your programmer of choice to the board’s SPI flash chip(s).
    • The Pomona 5250 is suggested as it is high quality and easier to make contact with the pins.
  • A second computer to flash from (Try to use a recommended operating system: Qubes or Debian 9 or Fedora 30)

Supported devices

Please see the current heads source for supported devices.

Device Board name Firmware base Requires external flashing ME should be cleaned Notes
Asus KGPE-D16 kgpe-d16 coreboot X    
Dell R630 r630 linuxboot   X  
Intel S2600wf s2600wf linuxboot   X  
Lenovo Thinkpad T420 t420 coreboot X X  
Lenovo Thinkpad T430 t430-flash coreboot X X initial flashed image
Lenovo Thinkpad T430 t430 coreboot X X  
Lenovo Thinkpad X220 x220 coreboot X X  
Lenovo Thinkpad X230 x230-flash coreboot X X initial flashed image
Lenovo Thinkpad X230 x230-hotp-verification coreboot X X with hotp verification
Lenovo Thinkpad X230 x230 coreboot X X  
Open Compute Project Leopard node leopard linuxboot      
Open Compute Project TiogaPass node tioga linuxboot      
Open Compute Project Winterfell node winterfell linuxboot      
Purism Librem 13 v2/v3 librem_13v2 coreboot      
Purism Librem 13 v4 librem_13v4 coreboot      
Purism Librem 15 v3 librem_15v3 coreboot      
Purism Librem 15 v4 librem_15v4 coreboot      
Purism Librem Mini librem_mini coreboot      
Purism Librem Mini v2 librem_mini_v2 coreboot      
Purism Librem 14 librem_14 coreboot      

Emulated devices

For further information, see Emulating Heads

Device Board name Firmware base
QEMU development image qemu-coreboot-fbwhiptail coreboot
QEMU development image qemu-coreboot coreboot
QEMU development image qemu-linuxboot linuxboot

USB Security Dongles (aka security token aka smartcard)

NOTE - Heads does NOT support FIDO2 or U2F authentication. Be careful when purchasing to buy a compatible key.

NOTE - HOTP is currently only supported with Librem devices and the ThinkPad x230 rom with HOTP support

Manufacture Model line TOTP HOTP
Yubico YubiKey 5 Series X  
Nitrokey Nitrokey Pro 2 X X
Nitrokey Nitrokey Storage 2 X X
Purism Librem Key X X