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Pota
..a litte web browsing and/or basic e-banking and e-booking of tickets and so on?

First of all hi to every1!!!! smile.gif

Here is my humble question: I saw the "nokia 770" and wanted to know more about web tablets and web pads... After that I "stumbled" across the SIMPad Sl4 and considered that it has almost the same features of the newer Nokia, but it seems more intriguing about putting Linux in it...

So: if i bought one SIMPad SL4, put it "familiar" Linux on it, will I be able to browse decently the web and do a little of internet banking and/or browsing air/train timetables and buying online tickets?

WHat do U think about it?

Last one thing: will I be able to find working drivers for a recent WIFI PCMCIA card? I need one with at least support for WPA, because my WLAN is set up this way and I do not want to loosen security...

Any suggestion? Even if i am a newbie, I think that some very practical advices in this direction could be appreciated by most of the people around... smile.gif

Many TIA!



Pota
Pota
No news, yet? wink.gif

However, the newer WLAN's compatibility issue IMHO is the most important problem for this kind of devices... I myself have a small WIFI network at home.... I have set it up with a standard WPA encryption, nothing too sophisticated, but still I cannot connect to it using my old devices which only support wifi 802.11b without WPA...

Is it a problem or am I so stupid that I haven't figured how to make it work? tongue.gif
mr_nice
Hi,
first I have to say you that only 16 bit PCMCIA WLAN Cards will work.
Second I have no WPA on my SIMpad but it shuld be possible to have one. If you use the WPA supplicant you are able to use WPA on WLAN Cards which don't support WPA.
Cause the familiar distribution is now the main distribution for SIMpad you shuld ask the familiar guys, in this specific case, if and how they support WPA supplicant. But this one looks good Supported WLAN Cards on Familiar.
See here how to contact familiar people http://familiar.handhelds.org/#faqs
Please repost your answer here!

regards nice
Pota
Uhm... I was starting to loose hope not because of the lacking of replies (because only a very short time has passed since I posted), but because of my further searches with google...

I saw the supported hardware page, but it only listed quite "old" WLAN PCMCIA cards... so I lost hope.. But I see that You have pointed out some very interesting facts about WPA supplicant for linux...

I am a quasi-total newbie about linux... but I think that if there are supplicants for "old" cards... welll they could be ported to familiar "version" quite easy by experienced programmers.... smile.gif Let's hope!
Many thanks!

As soon as I will learn something "Practical" about this issue. I will post the answers here!

Thanks!

P.S.

1) !6 bit PCMCIA? but do 16 bit WIFI PCMCIA ever exist ???

2)What about "average" browsing security with actual browsers available? (SSL1 and SSL2 mainly...)
Snappy
QUOTE(Pota @ Jul 5 2006, 02:22 AM)
P.S.

1) !6 bit PCMCIA? but do 16 bit WIFI PCMCIA ever exist ???

2)What about "average" browsing security with actual browsers available? (SSL1 and SSL2 mainly...)
*


Almost all early wifi (pre 802.11b (HomeLAN etc) and 802.11b) pccards are 16bits, only the later ones and 802.11g cards are cardbus pcmcia (32bit).

You can tell by the tell-tale "gold-finger edge" on cardbus wifi cards.

32bit Cardbus eg ...
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00006BA7...glance&n=172282


16bit pccard eg ...
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00005B8H...glance&n=172282
Pota
Many thanks for explanation! smile.gif

Now the issue is simple: to have a chance to be able to connect to actual WIFI networks, the SIMPAD (linux) has to implement at least WPA on a 16 bit PCMCIA WIFI card....

Plain and simple, otherwise it will be practically useless... sorry to say so, but it seems to be the truth...

It is not only a matter of speed, but really of compatibility... even on my humble wifi home networks I had to implement WPA to have a little bit of security... one cannot hope to find a public network or a paid connection without it nowadays...

I will be glad if someone could be able to correct me on this issue... but I think it will not be so esay...

I personally find that the SIMPAD could be, especially with linux on it, a great terminal, but this problem definitely needs to be adressed.. unsure.gif
Mickeyl
Except if physical size matters, I would always choose a Nokia 770. The hardware is in almost all aspects much better than the SIMpad -- which is not surprising since the SIMpad design is over 5 years old.
Pota
QUOTE(Mickeyl @ Jul 5 2006, 01:15 PM)
Except if physical size matters, I would always choose a Nokia 770. The hardware is in almost all aspects much better than the SIMpad -- which is not surprising since the SIMpad design is over 5 years old.
*



Interesting thoughts, and that was the same for me until a few days ago...

After I learned about the SIMpad, I understood that, even if older, the Siemens has a bigger screen, a better battery life and moderate expandibility given the PCMCIA slot..

Moreover I have read that the Nokia is considerably slow, for example when reading PDF and that is more true when scrolling the screen to view a bit more complex documents... But I have never read issues on slow pdfs reading in the older SIMpad's reviews.... even if it is old and had more time for testing and reviewing...


Finally, considering that 5 years have passed, the hardware differences are not so HUGE (Wifi apart) between the two models... It seems to me that the SIMPAD was very cleverly thought of and produced with better quality components without any compromise for the period...

If Only I could understand how to have support, using familiar linux as OS, for WPA and a bit of security in browsing, I really would choose the SIMpad over the Nokia, without any esitation.... smile.gif
Pota
I have found THIS SITE which speaks about a supplicant for linux.... it seems that this works for hostapd...

Since I have read that most PCMCIA card are supported in familiar using this daemon... it seems that the job is already done.... or not? unsure.gif unsure.gif

I am a totally linux newbie.... but I think that this could be a partial, if not a total, answer to the needs explained before...

Someone with more experience could read the page and tell if that's it? wink.gif

Please! wub.gif
Hrw
Pota: grab any Prism2 card, then use hostap driver with wpa-supplicant. This will allow you to connect to WPA, WPA2 networks without problems.
mr_nice
In my opinion the SIMpad and the Nokia 770 are not comparable.
The SIMpad was designd with companies in mind the nokia 770 is more a consumer objekt.


The most striking point for the nokia 770 is that they have a bigger community. huh.gif

But I hope it is possible to change that!
There are so many peole like you which are in the same situation. The Nokia 770 pushes the Webpad sector and with it it pushes the SIMpad! Look at the prices for used SIMpads on ebay. Since there is that Nokia thing the SIMpad prices rose up. If you like commercial support you can even get a Win ce 4.2 from mullengers.com which supports wpa on some cards ,too.

The fact, that the nokia have better hardware let me cold.
You can use a X11 or even a Windows terminal over a gre tunnel and use the huge power of servers to fit your mobile demands. Sitting in a restaurant or a cafee which offers free wlan and using your pc as usual. With the bordbandtechnology which offers now up to 1 Mbit of upload this is no longer a problem.

I hope I will ever be able to write some drivers for it to be not depend on others and with that I can use it a lot of years longer. I try to learn C at the moment but unfortunate I am not good in it blink.gif

This brings me to a question of you. Online Banking - the SIMpad have a SmartCard reader but the state of it is unknown to me. I read about that it is not usable at the moment with Linux. If it will be usable you can use HBCI which is better then PIN/TAN only. Or you can sign emals with it encrypt some thigs etc.
Pota
Very, very interesting thoughts! smile.gif

I am sad only because of the raise of prices... wink.gif
I think I will get a SIMpad and a Compact flash card fully compatible with hostap driver.... I have put my eyes on a D-Link DCF-660W, which should be supported without problems.


Right? DO You have any suggestion about which one to choose from that list? Not everyone work with hostap even if they are prism2 based.... is it still right or they MUST work "literally" with hostap????


And that should settle it.... I promise I will keep informed everyone interested and I will try to write down my impressions and thougts even if I am definitely not a Linux expert... wink.gif


For E-banking: the smartcard sure is promising, but the most important thing for now, I think, is SSL support and some concrete security about browser...

Speaking of security: do You think thats is better the Kokkueror browser (OPIE) or the Mini browser (is it Minimo???) of GPE???
Hrw
dcf-660w works nice with hostap (I have one). for WPA you may need firmware upgrade to 1.7.4 (or newer).
Pota
That's nice, but.... where to download the firmware for the dcf-660w ?
Pota
Uhm.... I am very challenged.... so far I have collected a lot of good informations about the simpad, the software and the wifi card, but....

Actually, looking almost everywhere, I found out that to buy everything I needed(the simpad, the wifi card and some accessories), I could spend around $ 350....

I think it is a price a bit high.... or not? I begin to wonder...

I needed the smallest, yet comfortable enough, device possible for quick browsing and a bit of e-banking without prepairing and powering up my other pcs...

But it is really starting to be a bit too expensive... especially with the Origami-based devices showing up...

What do U think?
bnb
QUOTE(Pota @ Jul 7 2006, 08:35 AM)
Actually, looking almost everywhere, I found out that to buy everything I needed(the simpad, the wifi card and some accessories), I could spend around $ 350....

Simpads are pretty much keeping their value and I'm surprised to learn that they cost more on ebay today than they were when I got one a few years ago. Perhaps if you don't like it you'll be able to sell it on without any depreciation...
QUOTE
I needed the smallest, yet comfortable enough, device possible for quick browsing and a bit of e-banking without prepairing and powering up my other pcs...

Well I see them as 2 completely separate tasks - quick browsing can be done without a secure connection. Banking is something I would prefer to do on a fixed PC, and is not casual at all. The simpad is pretty good for browsing but lacks flash and java, and gpe-mini-browser doesn't even show opensimpad.org (I think opie konqueror is better). If you want the simpad to just do simple browsing then it's pretty good.
QUOTE
But it is really starting to be a bit too expensive... especially with the Origami-based devices showing up...

Do you mean like Q1? I intend to get a sony ux180 (or an oqo) to replace my desktop but they will not beat the simpad on speed of suspend/resume... to check mail I switch it on, open sylpheed, get an SSL IMAP connection and that's it. seconds. The same goes for a website; turn it on, read, turn it off before a PC has finished it's memory check...

The main disadvantage of the simpad is it's too bulky to carry around - a pocket size one would be better for settling arguments at the pub, and if that's what you want I'd get the nokia. If it's indoor browsing as a coffee table accessory then the largeish screen of the simpad beats just about everything else.

HTH
Pota
Interesting post, really! smile.gif

Quick and casual email and browsing is one thing I wanted to do with the SIMpad... so I understand that it is ok.

For "e-banking" I actually meant controlling stocks... but this fact still needs security... moreover I wanted to be able to do a quick online booking of train and airplanes tickets.... this last thing involves credit card data to be transmitted...

I always prefer to book for trains or airplanes in the late evening, so I needed a way to be quickly online, just browse a little for informations, weather forecasts, little email and finally online booking... all of this without powering up a desktop PC or deploying the notebook I always close and store inside a carrying bag because either I need to leave the room clean and I don't want to leave it around or I simply have to move away and travel early the next morning... wink.gif

From this point of view I "fear" that the Nokia 770 could be a more secure mean (I remember having read some reviews of people who actually managed to do e-banking and/or booking online without worries with it).... I just have to wait a bit for prices to "stabilize"....

Uhm... it seems descouraging a bit... at least it seems to keep me away from the SIMpad area... sob... huh.gif
bnb
QUOTE(Pota @ Jul 7 2006, 08:02 PM)
I wanted to be able to do a quick online booking of train and airplanes tickets.... this last thing involves credit card data to  be transmitted...

I don't want to say this is difficult - I don't know... Opie's konqueror is really quite good but I prefer to stick to the deficiencies of GPE, and can try out a website or 2 if you want.

QUOTE
all of this without powering up a desktop PC or deploying the notebook I always close and store inside a carrying bag because either I need to leave the room clean

Then the simpad is ideal - I hope I've conveyed that it takes seconds to get online and you can browse for hours with the thing no more cumbersome than a book.

QUOTE
From this point of view I "fear" that the Nokia 770 could be a more secure

Possibly, but, for instance, wouldn't it quite largely depend upon the browser?

My opinion would be to get one (as cheap as possible) whilst you wait for a nokia. Then, next year when they're cheap, get a nokia and come back to the forum and do a comparison - and sell the one you don't want, probably for as much as you paid...
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