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Messages - danr

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Debian / State Of The Kernel Feb 2010
« on: June 16, 2010, 05:15:54 am »
Quote from: macwiz
Quote from: radiochickenwax

(Someone really ought to clean that page up)

I have been trying to follow the instructions there to install Debian on my c860, but so many of the links do not lead anywhere - especially as far as using Angstrom for altboot/kexecboot is concerned, which it seems I have to do for the c860. I am confused about what kernels are available and what boot technique I can use. Suffice to say I haven't managed to get Debian running.

If anyone can point me to a way of getting Debian working on my c860 using resources that are readily available now, I would be grateful.

I've sent you a PM, but it didn't end up in my sent box, so I'll repeat it here.

I must admit I don't use my Zaurus all that much now.  Anyway, from memory what I did was follow the instructions on the Omegamoon site for installing Ubuntu, but instead of the Ubuntu filesystem I installed the Debian filesystem.  So:

1) Flash the multiboot kernel

2) Untar the Debian rootfs on an ext2 or ext3 formatted SD card

3) Untar the C7x0-specific extra files from the Omegamoon site to the SD card (look for 1. Making preparations for running Zubuntu)

I think that was it in its simplest form, although in the end I also installed Angstrom on flash and installed altboot on top of that.  The reason was that I found the filesystem would occasionally get corrupted.  I don't know why, maybe the SD card was a bit dodgy.  So in the end I created a loop-back image with the Debian root filesystem on it and mounted it via altboot.  The advantage was that it kept the SD card as a fat filesystem which made backing up things more easy, and it seemed to be more stable.  On the downside, filesystem access would slow down at times.

I'd recommend you don't install altboot at first and see how it goes.  If it isn't stable then try altboot, but I had to hack the script to get it working, so it is more complicated.

Slightly off-topic, but thought I'd say that I have stopped using my Zaurus for the time being because I found the maintenance effort quite high.  I was using Emacs with Org-mode, connecting it to my PC at work via the USB cable, and logging in to see my to-do list on my work monitor.  I found it slow to use on the ARM processor, and the USB link would go down from time to time so I would have to reconnect the cable and log in again, something I always found to be an issue between the Zaurus and a Windows PC.  I also found the latest c7x0 kernel, 2.6.26, to sometimes not charge the internal battery, which caused more frustration.  The 2.4 kernels were better in this regard, but I'm not sure about if you can run Debian on the older kernels.

Now I've installed the calendar app Rainlendar at work and home, which allows me to view and edit my Google calendar and task list in RememberTheMilk, both of which are free.  It's not as nice as always having the details on you, but it's low maintenance and it just works.

Cxx0 General discussions / Newer Kernel Stops Keyboard Working
« on: March 24, 2010, 12:51:20 pm »
I thought I'd have a go at compiling the kernel for my C860, so I took the Corgi configuration file and used that as a starting point using the 'make menuconfig' command.

Well everything seemed to compile fine, but when I tried booting the kernel I found the keyboard no longer works.

I did get some warnings when compiling, including this one:

[div class=\'codetop\']CODE[/div][div class=\'codemain\' style=\'height:200px;white-space:pre;overflow:auto\']In file included from drivers/input/keyboard/corgikbd.c:24:
arch/arm/mach-pxa/include/mach/pxa2xx-gpio.h:4:2: warning: #warning Please use mfp-pxa2[57]x.h instead of pxa2xx-gpio.h
  CC      drivers/input/keyboard/spitzkbd.o[/div]

Has anyone tried doing this?  Anyone know where it's going wrong?


Ubuntu / Howto: Zubuntu Installation On Sl-c760
« on: February 23, 2009, 03:32:08 am »
I've used Zubuntu and Debian, and I've also noticed that X sometimes crashes when turning the device on after suspending.  I can ssh into it, but that's not much consolation if I'm away from a PC.

My solution? Install xdm, so that if X crashes, it restarts itself straight away.

The only downside to this approach is that after reboot xdm kicks in and the touch screen doesn't work correctly, so I make sure a terminal is loaded immediately (edit .xsession to do this - just copy the contents of .xinitrc first), and then I can do

[div class=\'codetop\']CODE[/div][div class=\'codemain\' style=\'height:200px;white-space:pre;overflow:auto\']/etc/init.d/xdm stop[/div]

to stop xdm and go back to the command line.  Then I log in again, and do

[div class=\'codetop\']CODE[/div][div class=\'codemain\' style=\'height:200px;white-space:pre;overflow:auto\']/etc/init.d/xdm start[/div]

which gives X all the environmental variables necessary to get the touch screen working correctly.


Ubuntu / Zubuntu Performance?
« on: February 06, 2009, 12:30:20 pm »
Quote from: tanjian2
I believe I have - I found alsamixer very confusing. Does [OO] mean that both channels are unmuted (as opposed to [MM])?


Yes I think so.  If you're using headphones, ensure the jack function is "headphone".  For some options you can press up and down to change the setting; for others you can press 'M' for mute / unmute.  Try experimenting with it.

Also ensure you've loaded the sound module at startup.  Your /etc/modules file should contain something like

[div class=\'codetop\']CODE[/div][div class=\'codemain\' style=\'height:200px;white-space:pre;overflow:auto\']snd-soc-corgi[/div]

but this will depend on your machine type.

Ubuntu / Zubuntu Performance?
« on: February 06, 2009, 11:29:28 am »
Quote from: tanjian2
Still NO sound - do you have sound working?

Have you run alsamixer and unmuted everything?

Ubuntu / Zubuntu On A 4gb Transcend Sd Card
« on: February 02, 2009, 10:12:24 am »
Perhaps an obvious question, but does the SD card contain a partition?  I think I might have accidentally used SD cards in the past without generating a partition.

If you fdisk /dev/mmcblk0 and select 'p', what does the partition table look like?  For reference, my SD card contains three partitions and looks like this:

[div class=\'codetop\']CODE[/div][div class=\'codemain\' style=\'height:200px;white-space:pre;overflow:auto\']        Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/mmcblk0p1               1         353     2835441    6  FAT16
/dev/mmcblk0p2             354         484     1052257+  83  Linux
/dev/mmcblk0p3             485         492       64260   82  Linux swap / Solaris

Kexec can pick up a kernel on the second partition; I just have to ensure the boot directory contains the files image.nfo,  kernel-cmdline,  zImage.

Ubuntu / Usb Networking
« on: January 15, 2009, 04:54:20 am »
I have the following in /etc/network/interfaces

[div class=\'codetop\']CODE[/div][div class=\'codemain\' style=\'height:200px;white-space:pre;overflow:auto\']iface usb0 inet static
pre-up modprobe g_ether
post-down rmmod g_ether

Try it out and see if it works for you.

Windows Issues / Windows Usb Link Quality
« on: October 27, 2008, 11:53:32 am »
Well after the problems I had with a 2.6.24 kernel, which caused Windows to reboot when I brought up the Zaurus USB connection, I thought I'd let everyone know that I tried the Zubuntu 2.6.26 kernel for c7x0 and I haven't had a single USB disconnect in 1.5 hours of fairly heavy USB usage so far, which is fantastic.  In the past I would have expected to have had countless dropouts.

Many thanks to all those people who worked on the 2.6.26 ARM kernel!

Zaurus - pdaXrom / World Clock
« on: October 20, 2008, 04:12:29 am »
I think he was querying the title of this thread  

Windows Issues / Windows Usb Link Quality
« on: August 14, 2008, 03:56:29 am »
Does anyone else use a Windows PC with a Zaurus?  If so, what are your experiences with the USB link quality?


Windows Issues / Windows Usb Link Quality
« on: August 08, 2008, 05:05:52 am »
I've used the USB link to connect an SL-860 to a Windows PC for a number of years now, and the quality of the connection has never been great.  From time to time, especially during large file transfers, the link freezes and I have to disconnect the Zaurus to re-start the network.

Yesterday I booted Ubuntu on a laptop which I normally run Windows XP on, and set up a USB connection to the Zaurus.  And the amazing thing was, there were no dropouts or anything, just a rock-steady connection, unlike when running Windows.  The same PC when running XP gives the usual unreliability.  So this is a software issue.

My work PC is Windows-based, so I can't install Linux there, but I would really like to have the same stability as under Linux.  Does anyone have any advice on improving the link quality?  I've messed around with all sorts of things, including MTU values, and disabling Windows services, but the link remains unreliable.

Off Topic forum / What Program Do People Want To See Coded?
« on: June 12, 2008, 11:29:04 am »
I used to use Mentor on my Psion some time back, but now I'm using Org Mode for my timekeeping.  It runs on top of Emacs - which means you have to learn the basics of Emacs first - but I've found it invaluable.

You keep all your notes in a text file in a big outline tree, and you can easily insert TODOs with a schedule date, and a deadline date if necessary.  There's an interactive agenda view which shows all the TODOs, appointments, etc. for a time period, such as the upcoming week.  In the agenda view old, incomplete TODOs are shown in red, and you can re-schedule them with a few key presses.  It only takes a few key clicks to mark a TODO as done.

Well worth a try.


Quote from: jamesannan

Debian / Debain Eabi On C7x0 With Angstrom 2.6.24 Kernel
« on: April 15, 2008, 03:56:42 am »
I had a quick go with the Angstrom 2.6.24 kernel on my C860.  Generally it seemed to work well, but Windows considered the Zaurus to be an unrecognised USB device.  Does it require me to re-install the drivers on Windows?

Quote from: henrysviper

You do not need this setup with two directories (angstrom/debian) and creating symbolic links. Altboot supports booting loopback images.
If you have the rootfs as a file ending in ".rootfs.tar.gz" in SD, then altboot (through the "Advanced" menu) can create a loopback image out of it for you. When booting, altboot sees all the images and presents you with a menu allowing to choose which one to boot. Thus, if you have a big enough SD card you can have many distributions on it without problems and workarounds.

Are the loopback images read-only or is there support for writing to them as well?



Zaurus - pdaXrom / Usb To Windows Connection Quality
« on: January 22, 2008, 05:34:18 am »
Well I found a way to improve USB connection quality  with a Windows PC.  There's a utility called DrTCP ( which allows you to set the MTU on Windows.  I set mine to 400 and a 200 MB file transferred without problems, with an average transfer rate of 262 kB/S.


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