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14 Jul 2005
There is a faq on the edits needed to add a new type of CF card, but I haven't found one for SD cards and am not having much luck trying to do something similar with the new 2GB Sandisk SD card. Mine is the regular, not the Ultra, since I understand the Z can't use the extra speed. I can mount it on my C1000 (running pdaxrom RC10) as /dev/sda1 using a USB reader. When I try to mount it as /dev/mmcda1 in the sd slot I get the unhelpfully vague message:
"wrong fs type, bad option, bad superblock on /dev/mmcda1 or too many mounted file systems (could this be the IDE device where you in fact use ide-scsi so that sr0 or sda or so is needed?)"
Specifying vfat and trying sda instead didn't help. Is there a file that needs a new entry for this card, like for a new CF card? How do I get the information to enter there?
My plan is to put Debian onto the 2GB sd card, as running it on a 1 GB card now doesn't quite let me do what I want. I can then add a 2GB or 4GB cf card and network though a USB bluetooth dongle to my cell phone and desktop, hopefully ending up with something closer to real laptop capability and longer battery life using the C1000 rather than the more expensive models with WiFi and microdrives. Hopefully, the major remaining problem after that is all set up will be the cell phone bill.
18 Dec 2004
Over the past several months I've installed various Cacko, pdaXrom, and OZ ROMs, as well as XQt and pocketworkstation. Based on my experiences, here are some basics that I suggest developers provide with these releases to help new users and expand their user base.
1. Release notes with installation instructions, key mapping table, change log, known bugs, links to resources, etc. [Users shouldn't have to google or search forum posts for scattered and incomplete bits of such basic information. For example, it shouldn't take more than a few minutes to add a text file with a table showing Ctrl, Alt, Fn and other special character mappings different from the Sharp keyboard labels.]
2. A simple script for each supported version of the Z which could be run upon installation and included in a profile that would get the necessary keys on the keyboard working--and any other suitable platform specific adaptations. [These ROMs are for a small number of platforms with non-standard keyboards. It's vastly more efficient for a developer to fix the key mapping than for individuals users to do it one at a time.]
3. A simple editor that can reliably manage basic configuration tasks. [Sometimes I've found the only editor included has significant limitations. It's frustrating to find you can't enter a colon in vi or a slash at the command line, or open a hidden file, or save a file to some directory even when you are root and the directory is not read-only.]
4. A package manager that is correctly configured for the developer's feed and works on most all of the packages that are in that feed as part of the official release. [I know writing a small package manager that will handle all or most .deb and .ipk packages out there is very tough. I know that the developer can't check all the contributed packages. But the packages at the developer's site that are offered as optional additions for installation should work.]
I understand that releases are works-in-progress and that some bugs are best fixed as they crop up after a release--e.g., recognizing network cards or fixing apps that crash in some contexts but not others. But it seems to me that the above basics could be supplied with relatively little effort for the developer. Or if not that the developer should make it clear in the release notes. It doesn't make sense for hundreds of individual users less familiar with the ROM each to have to diagnose and fix the same problem when the developer could have done it once for everyone in a few minutes.
These may seem obvious suggestions, but every release I've tried so far falls significantly short of meeting them, though some have come closer than others. I mean them to be constructive for the future, not complaining. I'd like to encourage developers to remember potential new users as the release date approaches rather than squeezing in one or two last (probably buggy) features. What do others think?
11 Nov 2004
Ratpoison is a hardcore minimalist window manager. The author obviously detests the the rat, uh I mean mouse, and refers to other such programs as "window manglers." Ratpoison is designed for keyboard control. To experiment without redoing your .xinitrc, give the path as an argument to startx:
It doesn't seem to stomp on anything else run this way.
Ratpoison opens to a blank screen. Ctrl-t is the prefix to execute commands. Start with Ctrl-t c to open a terminal. Run xmodmap for your device and any other initial scripts or commands you need, e.g., a power management program. Here are a few more initial commands.
Ctrl-t ? command cheatsheet
Ctrl-t w list windows
Ctrl-t s split screen horizonally
Ctrl-t tab move focus to next frame
Ctrl-t Ctrl-t switch back to last window
If you primarily use your Zaurus for xterm, hnb, vim, mc, links, and so forth, Ratpoison has some real strengths. It allows you to run these applications completely full screen and quickly switch between them. The Z feels like a very fast computer with a much larger screen this way. Graphical programs such as dillo, firefox, and sylpheed run full screen and operate with keyboard shortcuts, e.g., Alt-f to open the files menu. Some available extensions for firefox reportedly make it quite usable. You can still pull out the stylus and click things if no one is looking. . . .
You can split the screen to compile, edit, debug, and other multiple uses if you want. This is probably great on a desktop machine, but doesn't seem (to me) as useful on the Z. There are quite a few customization options and several Ratpoison add-ons for capabilities such as popup menus and key bindings. You can load a graphic background and run transparent aterms if you must have a little bit of "look" but Ratpoison is about speed and efficiency and maximizing the amount of information you can get onto one screen.
I compiled this to try it out myself, so I probably won't be too much help if you have difficulties. After this my initial ipk, I really appreciate the work of the pdaxrom folks and the others who contribute to the unstable feed. Hope it works.
10 Oct 2004
Perhaps it will save time for some if we collect in a thread those apps that still seem to be working but are not in the new RC5 feed while maintainers are working on recompiling those apps that need it.
For me, monobut, vncviewer, x0vncserver, less, and hnb still installed and seem to be working fine. These apps are from what is now called the oldunstable feed at the pdaXrom site.
Graphics, sound, and technical programs are more likely to need recompiling for RC5. links-g (with graphics) didn't run for me, nor did pari-gp (number theory calculator).
8 Oct 2004
I may be missing something obvious, but how do you send mouse button right-clicks and middle-clicks? Up through RC3 I used xmonobut. It still installs (though it's not in the RC5 feed), however RC5 calls up the app menu when you press the menu key and overrides xmonobut. You can still click the xmonobut icon, but that's slow and awkward. Is there an easy alternative built in?
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