This post is the consequence of a conversation I had yesterday evening with my sister, chatting to her about the upcoming South Lakes Interclub Photography Competition, and how the whole thing works.
But it is also kind of the point I was attempting to make on my previous post about fixing things in Photoshop that you could’ve resolved at the time of shooting (well, one of the points I was trying to make).
In previous years, we’d remained at the venue (as a competing team, not as host) until at least 11pm usually (once past midnight – after which we had to make an hour and a half drive back home) due to waiting for technological hiccups to be overcome so that we could continue, but last year was different.
Continue reading Work Hard or Work Smart?
SD cards are pretty cheap these days, but that doesn’t mean we should let our smaller ones go to waste, especially when a system doesn’t fully utilise the space of a larger one that could be more useful elsewhere.
So, what can we do?
Normally, to backup and restore SD cards, I use Win32 Disk Imager.
The main problem of Win32 Disk Imager is that it creates an image file the same size as your SD card, no matter how much of the card is actually being used. If you’re using a 32GB card with a 4GB partition and the rest is unallocated space it will still create a 32GB image file.
Typically, however, I think most of us will allocate the full size of the SD card to the system.
Continue reading Moving Linux to Smaller SD Cards
Cross compiling is something I’ve never really had a need to do before. All of my past Linux machines have been your standard 32Bit or 64Bit x86 based PCs, and have been fast enough that I’ve been able to compile on the machine it’ll be running on.
But, if a 15 hour XBMC compile taught me anything (other than the fact that XBMC doesn’t work fantastically on the CubieBoard), it’s that I need to setup a decent Linux box, and learn to cross compile for ARM based hardware.
I’ve also always wanted to create my own Linux setup from scratch for a long time. The CubieBoard gives me the opportunity to do this, but it will require some cross compiling to get things started.
Continue reading Taking a Stab at Cross Compiling
With XBMC on the CubieBoard a bust. It’s time to go back to my original thought, which is to set it up as a web server.
While I will generally run this without a monitor connected, I have decided to restore from the backup that already has LXDE installed.
Yes, I could set it up without X, and just install it in the event that I actually come around to needing it, but I figured I might as well just have it installed now. It’s not like there’s a lack of space on an 8GB MicroSD card.
Continue reading Let’s Try Cubie Web Server
The very first result that Google gave me when trying to find information on running XBMC on the CubieBoard (which is powered by the Allwinner A10), was this link.
This, in clear letters states…
“Avoid hardware that uses the Allwinner series of chips (such as the Allwinner A10). Development is not going well for these devices.”
Yes, “Avoid” really is written in bold. This does not bode well.
I shall try, none-the-less. After all, I have my backup img files for when things go horribly wrong.
Continue reading XBMC on a CubieBoard?
This is one of those posts that’s purely here for my own reference documenting what I need to do in the event that I need to start all this over from scratch.
This isn’t necessarily the exact order in which I’ve done things this time, as it’s taking me longer to resolve some issues over others, and I’ve reordered things into the process I plan to use in the event that I do need to start over.
Continue reading Cubian from the beginning…
Today I went out and picked up a MicroSD card. After all of yesterday’s frustrations, I wanted to have more options, and I figured an 8GB card would be more than plenty to store an OS with both XBMC and a web development server.
Chances are, it’ll never actually be getting used as both at the same time. If I’m watching TV, I’m probably not working on PHP code, and if I’m working on PHP code, I’m probably not interested in watching TV.
I’ve restored the NAND flash back to the latest Android (it’s highly unlikely that I’ll ever really want to play with Android, but it’s not doing any harm, and it’ll give me something to do on those rare days when I just get curious), and I’ve installed Cubian (I’m using R7 for the A10) onto an 8GB MicroSD card.
Continue reading CubieBoard WiFi Made Simple (TP-Link TL-WN725N)
So, I’m going to identify a couple of initial issues I’ve discovered with the default Linaro/Lubuntu Server image on the CubieBoard, and document how I’m getting around them, mostly for my own personal future reference, just so that if I have to start from scratch again, I have a frame of reference.
- HDMI Overscan is far too much. I can’t see the top or bottom couple of lines of the console display, and I’d say there’s probably 4 characters to the left missing (so, presumably about 4 missing on the right, too).
- It doesn’t detect my WiFi dongle. I’m using a TP-Link TL-WN725N Version 2 which uses the RTL8188EU chipset. This was actually detected just fine and worked perfectly in a couple of the Android images I’d tested. This version of the dongle was so much of a bugger to try to get working on the Pi that I gave up and just used a Netgear dongle instead that was automatically detected.
Continue reading More CubieBoard Adventures
Oh boy, what a day. Where to begin? Well, how’s about the beginning? I suppose that’s the usual order of things.
I’d been looking at the various CubieBoards that are available for a little while now, and have had my heart set on a CubieTruck (it satisfies a few hardware needs for something I want to do that I don’t think the Pi will be able to handle without a USB hub, a few extra gadgets & gizmos, a handful of extra USB batteries and a lot of faffing around).
Other than the one specific example mentioned above, the Pi can handle pretty much everything I would need such a device for, but there I was on Boxing Day, minding my own business, when I see an original CubieBoard (the CubieTruck is version 3 of the CubieBoard) for sale on eBay at an absolute steal of a price (even less than the cost of a Raspberry Pi, so how could I not?).
Continue reading Adventures with CubieBoard
I’ve been using and working with x86 based PCs for a little over 21 years now.
I started off with MS-DOS 3.3 and Windows 3.0 on a 286. The 40MB hard drive I had in there was so huge it had to be partitioned across two drive letters as the maximum partition size that MS-DOS 3.3 could see was a whopping 32MB.
I made the natural progression to MS-DOS 6.22 and Windows For Workgroups 3.11, then Windows 95, at which point I learned about networking, and sometime in 1996 I discovered Linux.
Continue reading Tiny computers are taking over