Google Nexus 5 (lg-hammerhead)

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Take a look at the open hammerhead issues before starting an installation!

LG Nexus 5
Nexus 5 running plasma mobile
Nexus 5 running plasma mobile
Manufacturer LG
Name Nexus 5
Codename lg-hammerhead
Released 2013
Category testing
Original software Android
Original version 4.4.4 on Linux 3.4.0
Chipset Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (MSM8974)
CPU 4x 2.3 GHz Krait 400
GPU Adreno 330
Display 1080x1920 IPS
Storage 16/32 GB
Memory 2 GB
Architecture armv7
Type handset
Unixbench Whet/Dhry score 840.9
USB Networking
3D Acceleration
Mobile data
Ambient Light
Hall Effect
Power Sensor
FOSS bootloader

This device is based on the Snapdragon 800.
See the SoC page for common tips, guides and troubleshooting steps


  • MartijnBraam
  • dzervas
  • lawl
  • bshah
  • opendata
  • JuniorJPDJ
  • otto

Users owning this device


Fastboot mode

First make sure to enable USB debugging in Android ([1]) Then with device powered off, hold down Volume Down and Power buttons simultaneously for a few seconds, until Fastboot Mode screen appears.

OEM unlock

Get device into Fastboot Mode, plug in USB cable, then:

$ sudo fastboot oem unlock

When prompted on device, use Volume-Up/Down buttons to highlight choice, then Power button to select it. The Fastboot Mode screen will appear again, and a message regarding flashing will appear briefly.


First, install pmbootstrap.

Build the image:

$ pmbootstrap init
$ pmbootstrap install

Then in order to flash it put your device in fastboot mode, and plug it in USB. Then do:

$ fastboot format system
$ pmbootstrap flasher flash_rootfs --partition userdata
$ pmbootstrap flasher flash_kernel
$ fastboot reboot

If flashing fails with an error like "Unknown chunk type", you may need to update your bootloader. bootloader-hammerhead-hhZ20h.img comes with the latest firmware from android image page and can be flashed with fastboot flash bootloader path/to/bootloader-hammerhead-hhZ20h.img.


lk2nd is a secondary bootloader that provides a standard fastboot interface, which can be used to boot postmarketOS without android boot flashed or pmbootstrap flasher flash_kernel.

  1. Download lk2nd-msm8974.img from Releases page on Github.
  2. Boot your phone to bootloader (fastboot) mode.
  3. Follow lk2nd instructions to install lk2nd. Basically flash it to boot partition (fastboot flash boot lk2nd-msm8974.img)
  4. Follow Qualcomm_Snapdragon_410/412_(MSM8916)#Installation to install postmarketOS.
Note Note: Enter lk2nd fastboot mode by pressing Volume Down after booting (this time wait until it vibrates then press Volume Down!

Hardware notes


There are 2 variants of hammerhead with different DDR vendors.

1. D820/D821(E) - Elpida

2. D820/D821(H) - Hynix

Stock bootloader/fastboot mode

$ fastboot getvar variant
variant: hammerhead D821(E) 16GB


$ fastboot oem lk_log && fastboot get_staged /dev/stdout | grep ddr
[40] Command line from primary bootloader: lk2nd uart_console=enable gpt=enable lge.kcal=0|0|0|x lge.rev=rev_11 androidboot.laf androidboot.emmc=true androidboot.serialno=0000000000000000 androidboot.bootloader=HHZ20h androidboot.baseband=msm androidboot.hardware.sku=D821 androidboot.hardware.ddr=elpida androidboot.hardware.display=orise androidboot.revision=11

Charge type

In case your phone is always plugged into power outlet 24/7, you can set it to be slow charge mode and reduce the charge voltage and current to minimum (set it at your own risk):

$ cat /etc/local.d/bq24190_charger.start
# echo Trickle > /sys/class/power_supply/bq24190-charger/charge_type
# echo 3504000 > /sys/class/power_supply/bq24190-charger/constant_charge_voltage
# echo 102400 > /sys/class/power_supply/bq24190-charger/constant_charge_current

See this reddit thread for some useful information.

See kernel documentation for details.

Power management

At this stage the directory /sys/devices/system/cpu/cpufreq is empty, so it seems there is no integrated power management.

You can disable cpu cores, though:

echo 0 | sudo tee /sys/devices/system/cpu/cpu{2..3}/online
Video: a working example of postmarketOS sharing sound and input running with a secondary device on top of mainline Linux.


No one has still worked on playback and recording support on-device.

Neverthless you can use a bluetooth headphone/speaker or another device (like an android device) to stream your audio.

source device

# /etc/profile
  export PULSE_SERVER=<sink_device_ip_address>

sink Device

# etc/pulse/
  load-module module-native-protocol-tcp auth-ip-acl=

Don't forget to copy cookie (~/.config/pulse/cookie) to from sink to source!


Bluetooth controller works. You can start the service with rc-service bluetooth start and enable it with rc-update add bluetooth

To test, use the instructions on the Alpine wiki.

Cellular modem

Using instructions for Nokia N900 it seems that SMS and calls likely work.


On first boot, if the wifi adapter started in airplane mode and NetworkManager did not detect that, a manual workaround is to disable and re-enable the wifi adapter.

This can easily be done in the graphic shell (Plasma Mobile has an airplane mode switch in the pull-down menu: check it and uncheck it) or through the shell:

$ nmcli radio all off
$ nmcli radio all on

Software notes

Video: MATE desktop on postmarketOS on Nexus 5.


Mate works if started with the fbdev driver, otherwise it freezes.


Producing MATE images with pmbootstrap will result in a non-functional device (as of now), so install the OS using the gnome environment.

Then from a root console, install postmarketos-ui-mate, lightdm, lightdm-gtk-greeter, onboard, brightnessctl.

Proceed to configure LightDM (/etc/lightdm/lightdm-gtk-greeter.conf)

  • enable touch keyboard (keyboard=onboard)
  • enlarge lightdm fonts (xft-dpi=460)

and finally

  • test the service (rc-service lightdm restart)
  • enable it at boot (rc-update add lightdm)
  • disable gdm (rc-update del gdm)


MATE does not follow GNOME scaling settings nor does it have a scaling control panel, so you will need to add export variables directly. Add the following lines to /etc/profile:

# /etc/profile
  export GDK_SCALE=2
  export QT_QPA_PLATFORM=qtc
  export QT_SCALE_FACTOR=2

Be aware that if you already setup scaling from the GNOME control center, this will probably make really really big.

Touch keyboard

To be able to further configure MATE, you will need to ability to cast right clicks:

the Onboard touch keyboard is easily configurable and it's able to send any mouse signal you can think of (even drag and double click).

If you don't want to configure the device using touch input, you can always install barrier to use mouse and keyboard wirelessly from another device.


Installing blueman gnome-bluetooth should suffice.

Power button

You can emulate the power button by creating a button on the panel pointing to the following script.


Video: a working example of postmarketOS running Phosh on top of mainline Linux.


The interface randomly freeze (pmaports#424) in particular when heavy loading (browsing and stuff), requiring an hard reboot.


There used to be problems with Bluetooth on Phosh (pmaports#904 - apparently fixed).

Numeric passwords

Be sure to use a numeric password if you want to use phosh, because its lockscreen only accepts digits.

Power button

Power button turns off the screen but the touchscreen keeps working.

Plasma Mobile

Plasma Angelfish does not run. You may want to install another browser, like qtwebbrowser, Firefox and/or Chromium.


  • Qutebrowser crashes;
  • Firefox works very well on Xorg, somewhat slower on wayland;
  • Dillo will probably work, too.

WebkitGTK based

  • Epiphany;
  • Vimb;
  • Netsurf;

They work well, but they are slow on both Xorg and Wayland.


Fastboot unknown chunk type

Flashing with fastboot seems to fail for some outdated firmware, it prints the message "FAILED (remote: Unknown chunk type)" when trying to flash the rootfs to userdata. This can be solved by updating to the latest baseband firmware and bootloader.

Remote Data Too Large

Sometimes ./ flasher flash_kernel can fail with an error message that includes "Failed (remote: data too large)". This might be solved by updating by reflashing the latest version of the stock Android image for the device.

Useful aliases

Force reboot

# echo b > /proc/sysrq-trigger

Input devices

# cat /proc/bus/input/devices

Partition layout

The eMMC could be either mmcblk0 or mmcblk1, and it seems to be random for each boot.

hammerhead:~# fdisk -l -o Device,Start,End,Sectors,Size,Name /dev/mmcblk1

Disk /dev/mmcblk1: 14.7 GiB, 15758000128 bytes, 30777344 sectors
Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disklabel type: gpt
Disk identifier: 98101B32-BBE2-4BF2-A06E-2BB33D000C20

Device             Start      End  Sectors  Size Name
/dev/mmcblk1p1      1024   132095   131072   64M modem
/dev/mmcblk1p2    132096   134143     2048    1M sbl1
/dev/mmcblk1p3    134144   135167     1024  512K rpm
/dev/mmcblk1p4    135168   136191     1024  512K tz
/dev/mmcblk1p5    136192   137215     1024  512K sdi
/dev/mmcblk1p6    137216   138239     1024  512K aboot
/dev/mmcblk1p7    138240   142335     4096    2M pad
/dev/mmcblk1p8    142336   144383     2048    1M sbl1b
/dev/mmcblk1p9    144384   145407     1024  512K tzb
/dev/mmcblk1p10   145408   146431     1024  512K rpmb
/dev/mmcblk1p11   146432   147455     1024  512K abootb
/dev/mmcblk1p12   147456   153599     6144    3M modemst1
/dev/mmcblk1p13   153600   159743     6144    3M modemst2
/dev/mmcblk1p14   159744   160767     1024  512K metadata
/dev/mmcblk1p15   160768   193535    32768   16M misc
/dev/mmcblk1p16   193536   226303    32768   16M persist
/dev/mmcblk1p17   226304   232447     6144    3M imgdata
/dev/mmcblk1p18   232448   277503    45056   22M laf
/dev/mmcblk1p19   277504   322559    45056   22M boot
/dev/mmcblk1p20   322560   367615    45056   22M recovery
/dev/mmcblk1p21   367616   373759     6144    3M fsg
/dev/mmcblk1p22   373760   374783     1024  512K fsc
/dev/mmcblk1p23   374784   375807     1024  512K ssd
/dev/mmcblk1p24   375808   376831     1024  512K DDR
/dev/mmcblk1p25   376832  2473983  2097152    1G system
/dev/mmcblk1p26  2473984  2535423    61440   30M crypto
/dev/mmcblk1p27  2535424  3969023  1433600  700M cache
/dev/mmcblk1p28  3969024 30777299 26808276 12.8G userdata
/dev/mmcblk1p29 30777300 30777310       11  5.5K grow