Giving back to Free Software projects

Supporting FLOSS events

We send various team members to leading Free Software events such as the coreboot conference, Debian conference, GUADEC, LibrePlanet, etc. We also aim to sponsor these events to help support their organization and travel sponsorship costs. We’re also present at various other events. Keep an eye on our various events-related announcements for the big ones!

Funding targeted upstream work

There are cases where Purism will want to use and improve a specific piece of software to the benefits of its users.

Besides making PureOS, where we do the core of our testing and hardware enablement development, Purism team members actively contribute to coreboot, GNOME, etc. We also sponsored software development for keysafe, or donated hardware to specific experts in the field to facilitate testing or certification, for example.

From December 2015 to July 2017, everytime someone purchased a Purism Librem laptop with Qubes OS selected as the preloaded operating system (at no extra cost), we gave $100 to the Qubes project (this was part of a special partnership agreement with the Qubes project).

Our “Software for Freedom” margin share program

Purism automatically enters all popular1 free software into a margin share program. Purism assigns each software project an amount of shares to it for the duration of their usage2. Each quarter Purism takes 5% (five percent) of margin and divvies that up equally per share according to the total amount of shares allotted, if that amount is a positive number. Purism maintains the list of software programs, project owners, and the best method of donating to the project. Purism tries its best to make this process fair, by weighting shares based on popularity, then funding through donation the projects Purism and its users find most useful. Margin share is calculated by taking the total dollars allotted to the program, divided by the total shares granted, to find a price per share, that price per share is then applied per project according to the total shares granted. For example (if there were only 4 projects and the margin share was only $1,000):

If $1,000 was the amount allotted from the 5% margin share for the previous quarter, and 529,000 total shares granted: $1,000 / 529,000 = $0.00189 per share

  • Project 1 (with 156,000 shares) gets $294.84 for the previous quarter
  • Project 2 (with 143,000 shares) gets $270.27 for the previous quarter
  • Project 3 (with 130,000 shares) gets $245.70 for the previous quarter
  • Project 4 (with 100,000 shares) gets $189.00 for the previous quarter


  1. “Popular” is defined as pre-installed, or deemed popular by Debian’s popularity contest anonymous data.
  2. “Usage” is defined as continuing to be pre-installed, or deemed popular.

Sometimes, instead of margin share, Purism simply funds work from upstream software projects (as explained above).