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Re: Olimex-iMX233-OLinuXino-Maxi Linux SBC

 
 
Frank Buss
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      06-16-2012, 11:51 PM
Nico Coesel wrote:
> Frank Buss <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>> It is a full computer with ethernet, USB, advanced video capabilites
>> etc. The drivers and the Linux kernel might be not as stable at the
>> moment, but it's definitely more than a toy.

>
> Unstable=useless. No way to fix that because everything is proprietary
> means it is useless for use in anything serious.


There are some performance problems with SDHC and some USB problems
(missing key events reported by some users, including me), but it is all
in the open source part in Linux and some people are already working on
it to fix it. I don't know of problems in the closed source GPU part.
Most users who are using e.g. XBMC to use it as a media player are not
affected anyway.

> I mean you can mount the Olinuxino in your own case because all the
> connectors are on one side. You'll have a hard time including a Rpi
> into your own product.


I don't know much about mechanics, but it's just a light credit card
size PCB. Should be possible to mount it with some screws and plastic
washers or similar things.

> With 256MB ram you can't run full blown Linux either. I think you can
> also run a regular Linux distro on the Olinuxino but with Busybox its
> just easier to create an image which only contains the software you
> really need. Another advantage is that you'll have the cross
> compilation tools on your system as well.


I'm using a cross compiler as well for the Raspberry Pi, but it is
possible to compile on the device itself, too (but the Linux kernel
needs some hours instead of minutes, main reason because of the slow SD
card and the slower CPU). But it is no problem to use Busybox on it,
too, if you really want. Some people even started to port u-boot for it.

Creating an image is easy, and can be just copied on the SD-card (with
'dd' in Linux and similar tools in Windows or Mac).

256 MB is good enough to start even some X11 desktop. E.g. installing
MySQL and Apache requires much less memory and then it is a full blown
Linux for me.

Years ago I've installed diskless stations with X11 and a Tcl/Tk
application written by me on computers with just 8 MB. Of course, you
can't run dozens of applications in parallel like on your desktop PC,
and maybe big applications like Eclipse might be difficult, but you can
do a lot with 256 MB.

> Busybox/buildroot has improved greatly over the past few years. There
> are loads of programs already included so selecting the software you
> want is just as easy as using a package selector. If a package is not
> available you can create a new package with just a few lines of text.
> In my experience 9 out of 10 pieces of software compile correct out of
> the box. From the failing software 9 out of 10 only need minor
> tweaking like configure options. All in all it works pretty well.


I know buildroot and it is interesting. Not needed for the Raspberry Pi,
but maybe someone should try to port buildroot for it. This would allow
even smaller SD cards.

I've helped developing a buildroot based system with 128 MB NAND flash.
With the 256 MB RAM you could even use a compressed RAM disk as the root
filesystem, which would make it really fast and good for embedded
systems, because no wear of the SD card, if you don't need to save
something, and fast program loading.

--
Frank Buss, http://www.frank-buss.de
electronics and more: http://www.youtube.com/user/frankbuss
 
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Jan Panteltje
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      06-17-2012, 09:22 AM
On a sunny day (Sat, 16 Jun 2012 23:26:10 GMT) it happened (E-Mail Removed)
(Nico Coesel) wrote in <(E-Mail Removed)>:

>With 256MB ram you can't run full blown Linux either.



Are you out of touch with reality?
My old server has 385 MB RAM,
runs:
apache 2.1
named
sendmail
proftp
Nvidia latest driver on AGP! [1]
h264 encoding (ffmpeg, transcode, x264, mjpegtools, etc etc)
home control
dnla media server
newsreader
webbrowser (opera)
mediaplayer
webcam recording
sshd
telnetd (when enabled)
many other programs
all this at the same time on a Duron 950 MHz

Sure I normally do not run f*cking Qt on it, but that works too,
I run old fvwm, a much better window manager from days
when bytes were scarce.


[1] and that takes away a lot of RAM when playing video.






>I think you can
>also run a regular Linux distro on the Olinuxino but with Busybox its
>just easier to create an image which only contains the software you
>really need. Another advantage is that you'll have the cross
>compilation tools on your system as well.


Busybox is a pest.
Many people use it, I have it in Mips cross compiled on the WAP54G (also a Broadcom chip),
even my Humax cable receiver runs busybox, its a VIRUS!!!

In these days you realy want a real system.


>Busybox/buildroot has improved greatly over the past few years. There
>are loads of programs already included so selecting the software you
>want is just as easy as using a package selector. If a package is not
>available you can create a new package with just a few lines of text.
>In my experience 9 out of 10 pieces of software compile correct out of
>the box. From the failing software 9 out of 10 only need minor
>tweaking like configure options. All in all it works pretty well.


I tried installing Eclipse and Android SDK in Ubuntu.
I am persistent, but so far no luck with their (debian based) package system.
Took about 10 minutes to get eclipse up in slackware from a txz,
but now the Android APK refuses to run in 64 bit Slackware.
I will have to install an 32 bit version of Linux if I can find an empty partition one day...
I do not like package systems, compile from source,
it is the only way,


>--
>Failure

 
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Jan Panteltje
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      06-17-2012, 09:25 AM
On a sunny day (Sun, 17 Jun 2012 01:51:58 +0200) it happened Frank Buss
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in <jrj66v$lmv$(E-Mail Removed)>:

>Years ago I've installed diskless stations with X11 and a Tcl/Tk
>application written by me on computers with just 8 MB. Of course, you
>can't run dozens of applications in parallel like on your desktop PC,
>and maybe big applications like Eclipse might be difficult, but you can
>do a lot with 256 MB.


Exactly, 256 MB is enough to fly to mars and back.
 
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Jan Panteltje
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      06-17-2012, 09:32 AM
On a sunny day (Sun, 17 Jun 2012 07:55:52 +1000) it happened Don McKenzie
<5V@2.5A> wrote in <(E-Mail Removed)>:

>On 17-Jun-12 7:46 AM, Frank Buss wrote:
>> Nico Coesel wrote:

>
>> It is not as easy as with mounting holes or slots, but that's just a
>> matter of the right case:
>>
>> http://www.adafruit.com/products/859

>
>well that is the nicest case I have seen for the RPi to date.
>
>Don...


Yes transparent plastic boxes are nice:
http://panteltje.com/panteltje/pic/s...x_img_2033.jpg
Been using those for years:
http://panteltje.com/panteltje/pic/g...t_img_2411.jpg

But how to -fix that box- to something?
Seems merely shifting the problem?
:-)
 
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Nico Coesel
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      06-17-2012, 10:53 AM
Jan Panteltje <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>On a sunny day (Sat, 16 Jun 2012 23:26:10 GMT) it happened (E-Mail Removed)
>(Nico Coesel) wrote in <(E-Mail Removed)>:
>
>>With 256MB ram you can't run full blown Linux either.

>
>
>Are you out of touch with reality?
>My old server has 385 MB RAM,


....and a hard drive to swap to. Firefox for example wants over 200MB
of memory for itself. Now imagine running a few other applications.

>but now the Android APK refuses to run in 64 bit Slackware.
>I will have to install an 32 bit version of Linux if I can find an empty partition one day...
>I do not like package systems, compile from source,
>it is the only way,


Its too soon for 64 bit. Wait at least 5 more years. Linux has
excellent support for >4GB memory in 32 bit mode by using a bigmem
kernel. Even in 32bit mode the modern x86's address bus is 36 or 40
bits wide.

--
Failure does not prove something is impossible, failure simply
indicates you are not using the right tools...
nico@nctdevpuntnl (punt=.)
--------------------------------------------------------------
 
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Jan Panteltje
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      06-17-2012, 11:34 AM
On a sunny day (Sun, 17 Jun 2012 10:53:33 GMT) it happened (E-Mail Removed)
(Nico Coesel) wrote in <(E-Mail Removed)>:

>Jan Panteltje <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>>On a sunny day (Sat, 16 Jun 2012 23:26:10 GMT) it happened (E-Mail Removed)
>>(Nico Coesel) wrote in <(E-Mail Removed)>:
>>
>>>With 256MB ram you can't run full blown Linux either.

>>
>>
>>Are you out of touch with reality?
>>My old server has 385 MB RAM,

>
>...and a hard drive to swap to. Firefox for example wants over 200MB
>of memory for itself. Now imagine running a few other applications.


This is true, but also notice that 'harddisk swapspace' could well be
solid state FLASH disk.
No more seek times, and those FLASH, be it USB stick,
or (micro)SDcard, or whatever, are getting faster and faster.
I record HD TV no problem an a 10 Euro 16 GB USB stick.
So that sort of makes the 'swap' more like real memory.

So adding a bigger SDcard with a swap partition may get rid of the smaller memory problem.



>>but now the Android APK refuses to run in 64 bit Slackware.
>>I will have to install an 32 bit version of Linux if I can find an empty partition one day...
>>I do not like package systems, compile from source,
>>it is the only way,

>
>Its too soon for 64 bit. Wait at least 5 more years. Linux has
>excellent support for >4GB memory in 32 bit mode by using a bigmem
>kernel. Even in 32bit mode the modern x86's address bus is 36 or 40
>bits wide.


Yes seems 64 bit is not here yet, performance increase over 32 bit is not even that much,
few percent I have benchmarked on video encoding, and that is where it counts here.


>--
>Failure

 
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Nico Coesel
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      06-17-2012, 12:01 PM
Jan Panteltje <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>On a sunny day (Sun, 17 Jun 2012 10:53:33 GMT) it happened (E-Mail Removed)
>(Nico Coesel) wrote in <(E-Mail Removed)>:
>
>>Jan Panteltje <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>
>>>On a sunny day (Sat, 16 Jun 2012 23:26:10 GMT) it happened (E-Mail Removed)
>>>(Nico Coesel) wrote in <(E-Mail Removed)>:
>>>
>>>>With 256MB ram you can't run full blown Linux either.
>>>
>>>
>>>Are you out of touch with reality?
>>>My old server has 385 MB RAM,

>>
>>...and a hard drive to swap to. Firefox for example wants over 200MB
>>of memory for itself. Now imagine running a few other applications.

>
>This is true, but also notice that 'harddisk swapspace' could well be
>solid state FLASH disk.
>No more seek times, and those FLASH, be it USB stick,
>or (micro)SDcard, or whatever, are getting faster and faster.


That sounds like a way of wearing out the USB stick or SD card real
fast.

--
Failure does not prove something is impossible, failure simply
indicates you are not using the right tools...
nico@nctdevpuntnl (punt=.)
--------------------------------------------------------------
 
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Chieftain of the Carpet Crawlers
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      06-17-2012, 12:08 PM
On Sun, 17 Jun 2012 10:53:33 GMT, (E-Mail Removed) (Nico Coesel) wrote:

>...and a hard drive to swap to. Firefox for example wants over 200MB
>of memory for itself. Now imagine running a few other applications.


You are an idiot who was lied to about a firefox version 5 iterations
ago.

I'll bet the "firefox environment" is far smaller on a current version.

You Luddite dope.
 
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Chieftain of the Carpet Crawlers
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      06-17-2012, 12:10 PM
On Sun, 17 Jun 2012 10:53:33 GMT, (E-Mail Removed) (Nico Coesel) wrote:

>
>Its too soon for 64 bit.


What an idiot.

> Wait at least 5 more years. Linux has
>excellent support for >4GB memory in 32 bit mode by using a bigmem
>kernel. Even in 32bit mode the modern x86's address bus is 36 or 40
>bits wide.


Hahahahaha!
 
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Jan Panteltje
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      06-17-2012, 02:45 PM
On a sunny day (Sun, 17 Jun 2012 12:01:52 GMT) it happened (E-Mail Removed)
(Nico Coesel) wrote in <(E-Mail Removed)>:

>>This is true, but also notice that 'harddisk swapspace' could well be
>>solid state FLASH disk.
>>No more seek times, and those FLASH, be it USB stick,
>>or (micro)SDcard, or whatever, are getting faster and faster.

>
>That sounds like a way of wearing out the USB stick or SD card real
>fast.


It is true that that exposes the FLASH to a lot more writes.
But also modern FLASH has a lot more read write cycles than it used to be,
and for the memory sizes needed, the price, say cost, is very low.

I tested this by making a grml distro on a 8GB USB stick that I can
plug in my old eeepc.
That eeepc was one of the very first ones, and has only 4GB FLASH,
and a simpler version of Linux.
I wanted all the functionality I have in my normal grml server disk
on the eeepc, so, this is how that USB stick is partitioned:
panteltje10: ~ # fdisk /dev/sdc

Command (m for help): p

Disk /dev/sdc: 8011 MB, 8011120640 bytes
247 heads, 62 sectors/track, 1021 cylinders, total 15646720 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
Disk identifier: 0x1a2b3c4a <- modified

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/sdc1 * 63 4194367 2097152+ 6 FAT16
/dev/sdc2 4194368 5423168 614400+ 82 Linux swap <-------------------------
/dev/sdc3 5423169 5546049 61440+ 83 Linux
/dev/sdc4 5546050 15646719 5050335 83 Linux

I just boot from the BIOS into this disk...
This leaves the eeepc intact, and maybe in many years I can auction it for 100 x value or more,
as was one of the first apple computahs last week.
This little eeepc, that runs Linux, created a completely new market segment,
scared the sh*t out of MS, gave Jobs some ideas, and is now a very special thing.
No harddisk, all solid state, LED backlight, runs firefox, wifi.
So, anyways, grml ( www,grml.org ) runs perfectly using the USB stick with its swap partition.
600 MB swap is enough for most cases, except when you start to work with ESA pictures.
The FAT16 partition is needed else the BIOS does not boot.
The smaller Linux partition sdc3 is ext2 and holds the kernel,
the bigger partition is reiserfs and holds the rest,
Am not using this stick a lot (at all), but I will let you know when it no longer works :-)
Then, as I have a real HD image of it somewhere, I just copy the image to an other USB stick.
Backups, backups, backups.
Just got minidlna working in 32 bit Ubuntu (using a binary) and watched a movie with it.





>--
>Failure

 
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