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Messages - Wildherb

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Nokia Tablet / N900 Anyone?
« on: March 08, 2010, 04:48:50 pm »
I've just replaced my mobile phone and based on a good experience of the N810 I've bought an n900. Early days, but here are some initial impressions:

The UI is pretty usable and the zooming is very slick and smooth. Lots of RAM seems to keep everything moving along when multitasksing, but the write speed of the memory feels slow. No benchmarks, just gut feel.

Application availability is still poor. Things such as Abiword are starting to appear on extras-dev but overall, way behind the competiton. Come on, Nokia!

Hardware is great. Its fast. FM transmitter, fast GPS, real keyboard - everything you need.

My plan is to do relatively little tinkering on the phone OS itself, in order to keep it working as a phone! but easy Debian is installed and that seems to offer a great sandbox to play in without fear of breaking the phone itself.

More later. Anybody else got one?

Sharp PC-Z1 NetWalker / Netwalker Questions
« on: March 08, 2010, 04:37:53 pm »
Just a quick mention that I decided not to get a Netwalker. Instead I've bought a Nokia N900. It is not quite a direct competitor but both can be seen a Z replacements. Reasons for my choice:

1 One device to rule them all - fed up of separate phone, sat-nav, and PDA. Or, should I say, fed up of having to justify them all to my wife!
2 inbuilt 3G
3 Slight change in personal circumstances
4 I've had a play with the Nokia N810 and the format is quite usable. The N810 has a slightly larger screen than the N900 and given the choice, I'd prefer the larger screen, but hey! you cant have everyting.
5 Promise from the Backtrack Linux team to produce a mobile edition for the N900. Mobile pen-testing has been one of my original objectives with the Z, and it has been pretty good at it but difficult to get a build that was also a good PDA (e.g. OpenBSD)

Thanks to all of you for your comments, I will pop back from time to time to see how you are all getting on.



Sharp PC-Z1 NetWalker / Netwalker Questions
« on: December 29, 2009, 03:10:19 pm »
Thanks, first of all, to those of you lucky enough to have netwalkers already for sharing your opinions and experiences. Much as I would love one of these devices myself, before I part with my cash I'd like to ask a few questions. Sorry if some of them are of minority interest but they are important to me ;o)

1) Does the wireless suppoty promiscuous mode? In other words, if you run tcpdump can you see UNIcast packets from other devices on the WLAN (not just your own traffic and multicasts from others)

2) Has anybody tried aircrack? Does the wireless go into monitor mode and does the kernel support packet injection?

3) Does it come with Python installed? if so, what version?

4) Does it come with PERL? If so, is it possible to install modules directly from CPAN, i.e. perl -MCPAN -e 'install My::Module'

5) Do java applications run OK? what is performance like?

6) How easy is it to zoom in or change the font sizes? For such a small screen I trust that the designers are not expecting 20-20 vision as a pre-requisite for ownership!

7) How good is Youtube performance?

Many thanks in advance for anybody who can answer any of these.

Debian / Debian Screws Apt, What Am I Doing Wrong?
« on: December 28, 2009, 06:57:11 pm »
Quote from: arzgi
Quote from: pelrun
I suggest checking that your partitioning setup is correct - it's possible to make it so that multiple partitions partially overlap each other or extend past the actual size of the device, which can cause all sorts of intermittent and cumulative problems.

Thanks pelrun! Did that, everything ok there. So I once again started from scratch, made and formatted partitions,
Then flashed kernel 2.6.20 and installed rootfs. At this point,
etch on my Z runs fine. Cron must be started manually. When I upgrade to lenny, all other debs got installed
fine, cron is stopped and restared during update a few times, no problem there. But dpkg can not install lenny's
cron. Seems that post install script's chgrp is the problem. Or chgrp does not work, because cron is not working.
And that makes system quite unusable.

Blah, tricky one. Perhaps next time I'll bang my head to wall with eabi kernel and oabi system.

Since I bought an N810 I've not dabbled much with my Zauruses, however there are still occasions where they ust can't be beaten so I'm planning on keepng them!!!.

I recently had exactly this experience when converting my C3100 back from a very good OZ build to Zdevil's Debian. At first, apt-get and aptitude were just broken and several builds just died. However, after a bit of googling and tinkering I did get a working system. Sadly, I did not record a step-by-step guide to getting out of jail, but here are a few pointers which might help you.  I believe that this is not a problem unique to Zauruses, so use google - it is your friend.

1. set yout sources.list file to this - it is an older version which seems to help you get a foothold:
deb lenny main contrib non-free

2. Always use aptitude rather than apt-get. It seems more reliable. Start with aptitude update then aptitude install aptitude. If this works then you stand a fighting chance.

3. I then installed the apps I wanted, watching the various packages getting updates as I went. If the package does not exist then add this to your sources.list and run another aptitude update
deb lenny main contrib non-free

OK. So most things now work fine, but it is not 100%. Things like python are just too old. I might try an aptitude safe-upgrade otherwise it is a rebuild using yongun's rootfs for me now.  I'll let you know how I get on.

Ubuntu / Zubuntu 2.0 Released
« on: September 08, 2009, 05:33:46 pm »
OK, I'm gonna need some help here.

Copied rootfs and spitz kernel to hdd3 on my microdrive. hdd1 and hdd2 are where I'm going to run Openzaurus.

Boot the Z and the multi-boot selector finds two installs of Zubuntu, one on SD and he other on microdrive (which it reports to be CF). The SD one still boots fine.

When I try to boot from CF/Microdrive I get the following:

VFS: Mounted root (ext2 filesystem) readonly on device 3:3
Freeing init memory: 88K
Warning: Unable to open initial console

Sorry, but I'm no expert in fstab.
Any ideas?

Ubuntu / Zubuntu 2.0 Released
« on: September 07, 2009, 06:22:39 pm »
I did the flash a few days ago but found Zubuntu would not boot - a message told me to fsck my card but even doing so on a separate linux box failed to fix it so I finally gave up, reformatted and started again. This time, success! or at least partial success. It booted - and yes, it is beatiful to look at - but my install  was running soooo slooooow! This must be mainly down to my SD card (the file extraction alone took the best part of a day). Anyway, I'm currently extracting a new install to the an hda3 partition on the microdrive of my Spitz. My plan is for a 2G install for Zubuntu and two smaller partitions to dual-boot into OpenZaurus.Having accidentally trashed my OZ build I've now got nothing to lose.

I'll report back shortly.

Ubuntu / Zubuntu 2.0 Released
« on: September 01, 2009, 06:05:16 pm »
Thanks Cortez. Got a busy week ahead but hope to find time to take the plunge.

In the meantime, can anybody tell me if they have had any success with:

Compiling PERL CPAN modules?
Does tcpdump sniff all traffic on the wireless LAN or just multicasts and packets to/from the Z?

Yes, my SD card is a year or two old. Ideally, I'd want Zubuntu on microdrive which I'll attempt if it checks out well.

Ubuntu / Zubuntu 2.0 Released
« on: September 01, 2009, 04:48:51 pm »
Quote from: cortez
Quote from: scottlfa
Yeah found that out   Iys all good, holding with the present config til the menu thing is resolved.
It may be worse then "just" the menu-package. The "illegal instruction" after doing a apt-get upgrade seems to be related to a bug in the latest version of libstdc++6. This breaks apt completely at the moment!

In that case, should I hold back from flashing? I dont want to trash an otherwise working Z build if 2.0 is not yet ready.

BTW, it took me best part of 24 hours to unzip the root filesystem to SD!

Ubuntu / Zubuntu 2.0 Released
« on: August 29, 2009, 08:20:20 am »
Thanks Cortez, I'm downloading the image files now, I hope to get some time over the weekend to flash my Spitz.

Ubuntu / Netbooks And Ubuntu Making Me Lazy! :p
« on: August 28, 2009, 06:56:44 pm »

Sharp must have been watching this thread and hurriedly given us exactly what we just asked for! Time to start looking for a UK importer. Cortez is talking about it on his blog.

You need to repartition the hard drive and replace those useless sharp rom files into hdd1 and hdd2. You may also need to do a NAND restore, I forget. Trisoft have everything you will need

If you want the best of both worlds then you might like to give this a read.

Ubuntu / Netbooks And Ubuntu Making Me Lazy! :p
« on: August 28, 2009, 06:32:04 pm »
Likewise, my gadget drawer is getting a bit full and I agree, the N900 tablet looks to be very tempting! ;o)

Ubuntu / Netbooks And Ubuntu Making Me Lazy! :p
« on: August 28, 2009, 08:18:34 am »
Interesting thread. There is nothing wrong with being lazy - why would anybody seek to do more than they need to do? Cacko is a bit old and clunky but it still gets the job done. It is stable and has pretty much a full compliment of applications, particularly when configured with pocketworkstation and Meanie's XQt interface.

I guess that if you dont need a pocketable device then a netbook is going to win every time. Personally, I've been disappointed at how the netbook market has evolved. I bought an original eeePC and I was expecting future devices to become even smaller and cheaper, but what we are seeing is netbooks becoming more like regular laptops in size and cost. What I really want is the device that Psion would have made if they had kept on developing consumer hardware - good keyboard, large, clear screen, wireless, bluetooth, etc etc, but that fits into a jacket pocket.

The Z is still a very respectable bit of hardware but I do feel it has lost its way with so many fragmented and un-polished distros.  I was impressed when I tested Zubuntu earlier this year, but it was not quite ready for daily use back then. Watching with interest.

Angstrom & OpenZaurus / Fluxbox And Angstrom
« on: March 28, 2009, 08:43:41 pm »
Quote from: Capn_Fish
OK, I guess I can't build it (it fails with the version officially in OE, and my own 1.0.0 recipe doesn't work with the GPE patches.).

If you want just the WM, I can build that for you.

What can I say, Cap'n? I'm hugely grateful for your offer. I just want to be able to run X applications in re-sizable windows - not much to ask given that X-windows evolved for just such a purpose? I think it was fluxbox-gpe that I installed on OZ, nothing more. Hope that can compile OK.

BTW, I've never setup an OE development environment as I dont have the facilities. I'm a Mac G4 user (other than my Z's!).

As far as Angstrom on the Z is concerned, I know that icewm, xfce4 and even e17 appear in the feed but my experience is that none of them 'work'. If they run at all they require endless tweaking for menus and fonts to the extent that the average user will give up and re-flash. It also seems that even 2 years on, OZ has more apps than Angstrom, even if they are  a bit long in the tooth now. Such a shame.

So, grumbles aside, Aye, Cap'n! Hit me with your best shot and lets see if I can condemn OZ down to Davey Jones' locker once and for all, ah-harrrggghh !

Angstrom & OpenZaurus / Fluxbox And Angstrom
« on: March 27, 2009, 08:28:43 pm »

I've been having quite a lot of success running pocketworkstation under OpenZaurus GPE. I get the benefit of all the Debian apps but on an optimised and stable X platform. However, I've found that I just cant live with the matchbox wm which auto-fills the screen, but fluxbox-gpe is in the OZ feed and that makes the whole system feel just right. What a difference!

I'd love to now move up to Angstrom but every time I think I'm there I find a reason to stay with OZ. This time, I cant find fluxbox in the Angstrom feed. Is it there, or am I destined to stay on OZ forever?

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