UBports for BQ E5 : all you need to know



  • Hi,

    Please, let me explain my situation at this time and let me ask my questions throughout my speech.
    I miss a cool thread explaining all what a new user of UBports needs to know, and this could be that one if you help.
    The Q&A on UBports.com doesn't give me the answers to my questions.

    I have a legacy BQ E5 Aquaris Ubuntu Edition and I must say that I'm quite lost since Canonical dropped Ubuntu Touch.
    My OS version is OTA-15 based on Ubuntu 15.04 since 2017. I could understand indeed if there were no more OS update.

    OS Version
    But when I look at the updates, it is said that version 16 was updated on 2017/02/08. Version 15 or 16 ?...
    And the most recent displayed update of Ubuntu is always with the date of the day each day (incomprehensible)
    Yesterday : Ubuntu Version 17 updated 2018/03/05 ... Today : Ubuntu Version 17 updated 2018/03/06
    1° If somebody can explain ... Thanks in advance.

    Errors with Ubuntu Store
    What is less good is that I've seen recently that I've no more access to Ubuntu Store.
    An update was available for Gallery and uNav but I didn't apply them before and if I try today, it fails.
    When I try to go to the Ubuntu Store from the main scope, it tries to display something but the scope remains blank.
    I don't understand why Canonical has not let the Ubuntu Store "as is". If I have to reset my phone, I can't reload apps !

    I tried go to uApp Explorer with the browser and it was possible. Selecting an app (uTorch) I tried to install : no way
    I try the same after a login to uApp Explorer via Ubuntu. The login was granted but no more success to install uTorch.

    I went to OpenStore https://open-store.io/app/com.ubuntu.developer.majster-pl.utorch and selected uTorch again
    I was able to download a .click file and to install the application using Terminal as explain.
    So all is not dead ...
    2° But how to be sure about compatibility with my configuration for every apps (what are the risks) ?

    So, it seems that changing from Legacy to UBports may be a good idea, even if today my E5 works fine for my needs (except uNav)
    I've searched for BQ E5 on the forum and found 535 results but few of them seem to speak about legacy phones.
    I have read this https://forums.ubports.com/topic/682/aquaris-e5-ubuntu-edition-is-it-safe-to-change-to-ubports
    In october 2017, it was ok to switch to UBports using ubports-installer or magic device tool.
    3° Is it always true today ?
    4° If it is true, why BQ E5 is not listed in the Ready-to-Use devices on ubports.com ?
    5° If I switch my BQ E5 to UBports, will my OS version be upgraded or be the same as today ?
    6° Is it possible to go back and what are the risks for apps (knowing that the old store is not usable anymore) ?
    7° If it is the same version, what are finally the benefits ?

    Many thanks in advance for your answers
    Pulsar33



  • In summary, Canonical UT is past (many thanks to them), with UBports Ubuntu Touch you will loose most of scopes and you will get a great present and future OS with :

    1. Bug fixes and enhancements, (233 issues closed),
    2. Xenial (16.04) when ready (soon, I would say april),
    3. Fully integrated and functional (open)store,
    4. Notifications system,
    5. Anbox, for running android applications (Xenial needed, and only with some devices and probably not Aquaris E5),
    6. Updated and translated documentation

    and more important, be part of a vibrant community, with many active communication channels !



  • @libremax Thank you for your answer, however this concern only my question 7°. You have clearly listed the benefits I could have in the future (april and later).

    I'm happy to be part of a "vibrant community" (fortunately, this seems a reality here) but using Telegram is not so satisfying for me. As far as I know, the private phone number must be given to create an account and I don't like this. So, if I have to connect to Telegram channels to have help, this is a serious limitation.

    What about the 6 other questions concerning the present for a BQ E5 Ubuntu Edition ?
    Thanks for your replies. Best regards
    Pulsar33



  • @pulsar33 Hello,
    Firstly as said above Canonical Ubuntu touch is now finished. So there is Little point remaining for the future.
    Second use the ubports installer to flash ubports. Full instructions in ubports docs, but it should be straight forward. MDT should still work but is stopping support fir ubports soon.
    The E5 is a legacy ubports device and will get full support and security patches but is hardware is limited and will not cope with future development of ubports but should get security updates in future.
    Your system will flash the latest stable version of ubports (15 r3) and all future updates for your phone (see above). There are also development and release candidate versions you can try later if you wish.
    If you want to go back Bq still have the original Ubuntu files on their website. But there us little point to be honest. Ubports is even now far ahead of where Ubuntu was and us really moving quickly.
    Make the move, I did and its well worth it.



    1. It's a bug, OTA15 is the last even if you see 16, 17 or whatever
    2. Unav received updates with UBports version. Apart from scopes, it's possible that others apps don't exist in openstore. You have to check it.
    3. E5 is always supported by UBports and will be in the future.
    4. Communication about supported devices is somewhat inconsistent in the last months. Many versions exists:
    1. Today, UBports stable is based upon Vivid 15.04 as Canonical version (but with bug fixes...) In the coming weeks/months, OTA4 will bring Xenial (16.04) and bug fixes an enhancements.
    2. I believe you can go back to Canonical OTA 15 with BQ official Firmware firmware and flash tool but without access to Canonical Store. So it's possible some apps/scopes would miss to you.


  • @pulsar33 If you don't want to use telegram (which I believe is about as secure as it can be) this forum has always provided all the help and help I have needed. This really is a fast moving and developing project with a really helpful community as well. Have a good look around the forum and website thees plenty of info there and hopfully you will decide to make the jump to Ubports soon.



  • @pulsar33

    I but using Telegram is not so satisfying for me. . So, if I have to connect to Telegram channels to have help, this is a serious limitation.

    There’s also an IRC channel at #ubports on Freenode. It's linked to telegram supergroub, I believe.
    You can also use Matrix, https://riot.im/app/#/grou/+ubports:matrix.org
    or #ubports:Matrix.org (non linked with telegram).
    And, of course help is also available here.

    What about the 6 other questions concerning the present for a BQ E5 Ubuntu Edition ?

    Responses are above.



  • @libremax @Lakota : many thanks for all your answers, point by point !
    For me (and other users I hope) all seems clear now about BQ E5.

    For Telegram, I know that it is secured. The problem is just having to insert my phone number on this website to create my account. Maybe it's better to create it directly on my phone.

    Yes, your answers demonstrate that this forum is very helpful and reactive. This is a very cool thing !
    Best regards
    Pulsar33



  • @pulsar33 Thanks pulsar33. I used my phone to create my Telegram account using the app from the open app store. All available when you make the move ugh thats what you decide.



  • Hello,
    Here is the abstract of the install process made for my daugther on a BQ E5 Ubuntu Edition
    To succeed, we widely did otherwise than explained in the official informations.
    This is why I think that this could be usefull for you.

    We started here and had a close look to this video. We (hardly, because it's fleeting) got a false information about how to go in bootloader mode. We have known later that this was not usable for BQ E5 ... But let's tell the story.

    According to this, that, then that, and finally that we didn't know what to load. We finally found this. Well ! Having Mint 18.3, we downloaded ubports-installer_0.1.12-beta_amd64.deb and tried to launch. But my desktop is 32 bits, not 64 so it failed. I tried also Appimage and looked to snappy without succes. So I decided to install a Mint 18.3 64 bits fresh disk and was able (some time later) to install the deb file ...

    What did not work :
    Following the instruction of UBports installer, keeping in mind the video seen above, there was no detection. We tried a manual selection, launched the install process but were not able to switch to bootloader mode. As we discovered later here we switched in Factory Mode instead.
    What is not clear too in the video is if the device must be on or off when connecting it.
    We tried several times without luck, and saw that the "Developper Mode" was not persistent after some reboot so beware about that.

    What succeeded (with UBports-installer and Mint 18.3 64 bits) :

    • Power on the BQ E5 and set Developper Mode (SystemPreferences/About/DevelopperMode)
    • Open a terminal and type adb devices : this launches the adb daemon
    • Connect the BQ E5 (always powered on) to the desktop
    • Type adb devices once more : the device is listed
    • A question appears on the BQ E5 with a key : you have to grant the connexion
    • At this point, launch UBports installer : quick automatic detection !...
    • The installer displays a "Switch to UBports" option : select it then install
    • The BQ E5 is switched to Bootloader Mode automatically
    • Then follow the indications (the password requested is the one of your desktop, not the one of your BQ)
    • 12 files Downloaded (the first one is long with ADSL), then 13 files pushed to the device (quicker)
    • Then the device reboots and installs the files (about 5 minutes), then reboots once more running UBports
      You're done !

    Hope this can help
    Pulsar33


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