Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!

Do you have a question? Post it now! No Registration Necessary

Translate This Thread From English to

Threaded View
Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
-------------------------------------

http://www.marvell.com/products/embedded_processors/developer/kirkwood/sheevaplug.jsp

Not very often you get a high end distro like Ubuntu 9.04
and a cheap embedded Linux developer system that is also
capable of running a high end distro.

The $99 Sheevaplug is very much it.

You get a mains adapter size box with a plug to
plug into mains. It has ethernet link, SDCard, USB
and a mini USB serial port.

Nothing else.

No monitor port, no keyboard, no mouse port, no nothing.
Its also running on an ARM chip!

So what does it do except sit there and do nothing?

Welll..... its the ultimate food from the
gods sent to geeks!!!

Since it has 'nothing' you have to bring it alive yourself
and mold it to your whims!!!


It is pure geek wallowing in Linux from here on in...


First connect the mini USB serial port to your
Linux Ubuntu desktop USB port. Running dmesg in a console
window shows it has been recognised and installed as /dev/ttyUSB1
The mini-usb plug is very flimsy and such small connectors are utterly
dodgy!
If the ftdi serial port chip is not recognised then manually
install the driver:
    sudo modprobe ftdi_sio vendor=0x9e88 product=0x9e8f
(My desktop is Ubuntu.)

You now need some software to talk to the Sheevaplug.
Install minicom with
    apt-get install minicom
in a console window.

Then run
    minicom -s
to and change set up for 115200 baud 8 bits, N for no parity, 1 stop bit.
Change the default serial device to /dev/ttyUSB1
Press return to save changes.
Press save changes as default
Then Exit minicom.
Then run
    minicom
again, and now you are connecting OK to the Sheeva plug through the
serial port.

Login as root with password nosoup4u
(yup that is the default password!)

First off change the password to something you like with the
    passwd
command.

You can issue command like
    shutdown -r now
and see the computer shutting down and rebooting like a real
computer through minicom.

Log back in, connect up the ethernet, give it a few
seconds and then enter
    ifconfig
It shows the IP address of the Sheevaplug.

Now you can abandon the minicom console and start another
bash console window and connect via ssh!!!
    ssh root@ipaddress_of_sheevaplug
So now you are in and looking around.

If you have konqueror installed on your desktop computer,
you can also get in by opening konqueror and entering in the URL
    fish://root@ipaddress_of_sheevaplug
to snoop around to see what other software has been pre-installed.

First thing to do is to get the existing OS of the internal
flash chip (to avoid wearing it down) and run it off an SD Card
formatted with EXT2 to minimise wearing down the SD Card.

The instructions are here
http://plugcomputer.org/plugwiki/index.php/Category:HowTo
(Choose from all the howto available in that document
 and don't use EXT3, use EXT2 - EXT3 will wear down your
 SD Card. I used a 16Gb SD card and set aside 1Gb for swap
 space - excessive because I didn't want to risk running
 out of space for later parts of the experiments)


Having transferred everything off the internal flash and booting
off the SDcard allows you the freedom to install
lots of new software.

First off tried to get this useful utility installed
    apt-get install wget

But it came up with error message - the issue is that two
directories are always in RAM and can get filled - so it forgets
to create them whenever Sheevaplug boots.
So create these two directories to get apt-get working

mkdir /var/cache/apt/archives
mkdir /var/cache/apt/archives/partial

Then I test downloaded a file using wget.
I then copied out the file from the sheevaplug using scp command.
So in effect the sheevaplug has just become my downloader
device consuming 5W that can be left running all night if need be.

and then installed away more stuff like the following

apt-get install lynx
apt-get install rsync
apt-get install youtube-dl
apt-get install sqlite3
apt-get install bash
apt-get install xterm

(If your /var/cache/apt/archives gets full,
then reboot the sheeva plug and recreate the
directories again)

(installing bash might have been redundant - but even
 if redundant, you can see how it reacts to the command
 to see if updates are available)

then I did

apt-get update
apt-get upgrade

to upgrade the Linux to the latest version (but you may
have to do that before installing anything if some
of the packages got updated).

Then tried to get VNC server working
http://computingplugs.com/index.php/Installing_X11
Got that working.
(Be weary if you follow instructions to recompile from
 source in that link to get xterm working
 Your dependency checking may go out the window.)

And then got vncserver finally working!!!!
So even through Sheevaplug has no graphics card,
I can still get a VNC session on it going!!!

Then installed more complex software

apt-get install firefox
apt-get install pan
apt-get install openoffice.org
apt-get install mysql-server
apt-get install qcad
apt-get install konqueror
apt-get install xpdf
apt-get install dillo
apt-get install gnumeric
apt-get install abiword
apt-get install apache2
apt-get install dosbox (yes! and it works well!)
apt-get install kmail
apt-get install synaptic
apt-get install onboard  (on screen keyboard)
apt-get install kwrite

All in all 2Gb of software got installed.
Your luck will vary as the software is
constantly being updated (and broken)
so wait a day if something doesn't work
and try again. [My current install has problems
starting X and crashes first time but
second time its OK when running applications
like firefox.] Some things like gambas2 and
its libs are not in the arm repositories yet, so
not everything can work just yet anyway.

GUI software like firefox I can use
    ssh -X root@ipaddress_of_sheevaplug
and then run
    firefox
to get it to run as a remote X session.

Same with pan, open office, konqueror, gnumeric, abiword,
xpdf, qcad and dillo.

Apache server and mysql server is running!
Its turned the sheevaplug into a powerful server.

But also desktop features available too...

I ran pan (newsreader) and change pan to use dillo (webrowser)
instead of firefox and I get near full speed
reading newsgroups and browsing links
even through I am running remote X session.

Running firefox or dillo with remote X session
is also a safer bet - I can move all the dodgy website
browsing to the sheevaplug and change the SD card if some
dodgy infection is suspected.

For $99, the sheeva plug is 1.2GHz ARM with 512Mbytes of
RAM and 512Mbytes of flash and from the above
you can see it runs a full version
of Ubuntu very well!!!
The hardware is open and the sofwtare is all open source
so you can go make your own hardware and install as much
software as the repositories and memory chips/hard disks
can carry.


This post is brought to you from the Sheevaplug
running knode through a remote x session
on the main desktop computer :-)




Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
Quoted text here. Click to load it
http://www.marvell.com/products/embedded_processors/developer/kirkwood/sheevaplug.jsp
Quoted text here. Click to load it

For the $99 one gets the cross-compiler development package, too,
in case one doesn't want to compile natively (gcc) on the Plug.
Note also the Ethernet is Gigabit.

Can connect USB devices such as HDs and thumb drives:

<
http://thadlabs.com/PIX/SheevaPlug_labelled.jpg
<
http://thadlabs.com/PIX/SheevaPlug_underside.jpg
<
http://thadlabs.com/PIX/SheevaPlug_ext_HD.jpg

One important fact: it uses very little power. Note the power
stats on this web page which is powered by a SheevaPlug:

<http://computingplugs.com/index.php/SheevaPlug_Performance#Power_usage


Quoted text here. Click to load it

But if you need them (including 7 USBs, RS-232, audio I/O,
1280x1024 VGA, two GiGE ports, etc.) get the Open_RD_CLIENT:

<http://www.globalscaletechnologies.com/t-openrdcdetails.aspx

Quick tour of the SheevaPlug:

root@debian:~# date
Sun Aug 23 20:18:06 UTC 2009

root@debian:~# uptime
 20:18:10 up 21 days, 10:54,  1 user,  load average: 0.52, 0.23, 0.12

root@debian:~# uname -a
Linux debian 2.6.22.18 #1 Thu Mar 19 14:46:22 IST 2009 armv5tejl GNU/Linux

root@debian:~# cat /proc/version
Linux version 2.6.22.18 (dhaval@devbox) (gcc version 4.2.1) #1 Thu \
 Mar 19 14:46:22 IST 2009

root@debian:~# cat /etc/issue
Ubuntu 9.04 \n \l

root@debian:~# fdisk -l

Disk /dev/sda: 250.0 GB, 250059350016 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 30401 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x5b6ac646

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1               1       30401   244196001    c  W95 FAT32 (LBA)

root@debian:~# df
Filesystem           1K-blocks      Used Available Use% Mounted on
rootfs                  519168    195036    324132  38% /
tmpfs                   257816         0    257816   0% /lib/init/rw
varrun                  257816       272    257544   1% /var/run
varlock                 257816         0    257816   0% /var/lock
udev                    257816        12    257804   1% /dev
tmpfs                   257816         0    257816   0% /dev/shm
tmpfs                   257816     38712    219104  16% /var/cache/apt
/dev/sda1            244136352    119008 244017344   1% /media/usbhd

root@debian:~# cd /media/usbhd/thad/

root@debian:/media/usbhd/thad# ll check_endian
-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 9733 Aug  3 13:02 check_endian*

root@debian:/media/usbhd/thad# file check_endian
check_endian: ELF 32-bit LSB executable, ARM, version 1 (SYSV), dynamically \
  linked (uses shared libs), for GNU/Linux 2.6.16, not stripped

root@debian:/media/usbhd/thad# ./check_endian
This system is LITTLE-ENDIAN

root@debian:/media/usbhd/thad# gcc --version
gcc (Ubuntu 4.3.3-5ubuntu4) 4.3.3
Copyright (C) 2008 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
This is free software; see the source for copying conditions.  There is NO
warranty; not even for MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.

Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!

Quoted text here. Click to load it
http://www.marvell.com/products/embedded_processors/developer/kirkwood/sheevaplug.jsp
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Gee... I wonder if I can get mosix running on this and finally have my very
own, cheap/affordable cluster!

Awesome!

--

*****************************************************************************
                                      
We've slightly trimmed the long signature. Click to see the full one.
Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
Quoted text here. Click to load it

That it is.  Apparently Debian, Ubuntu and FreeBSD are already running
on these, but it's not clear from mosix's page how much work would be
required to port to ARM architecture; this page:

<http://www.mosix.org/txt_distributions.html

claims "Supports both 32 & 64-bit x86 architectures". Here's the CPU
info of one of my SheevaPlugs:

root@debian:~# uname -a
Linux debian 2.6.22.18 #1 Thu Mar 19 14:46:22 IST 2009 armv5tejl GNU/Linux
root@debian:~# cat /proc/cpuinfo
Processor       : ARM926EJ-S rev 1 (v5l)
BogoMIPS        : 1192.75
Features        : swp half thumb fastmult edsp
CPU implementer : 0x56
CPU architecture: 5TE
CPU variant     : 0x2
CPU part        : 0x131
CPU revision    : 1
Cache type      : write-back
Cache clean     : cp15 c7 ops
Cache lockdown  : format C
Cache format    : Harvard
I size          : 16384
I assoc         : 4
I line length   : 32
I sets          : 128
D size          : 16384
D assoc         : 4
D line length   : 32
D sets          : 128

Hardware        : Feroceon-KW
Revision        : 0000
Serial          : 0000000000000000
root@debian:~#

Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
On 16 Wrz, 19:03, "http://books.google.com/books ?
id3D%ifqnAAAACAAJ&dq3D%inauthor:%22Russ+Manning
%22&lr3D%&as_brr3D%0&rview3D%1&source3D%gbs_book_other_versions_r&cad3D%2"
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!

Quoted text here. Click to load it
sheevaplug.jsp

I agree, neat...

But I am a slackware guy. How did you load in modules? Mine won't discover
a USB audio device...The instructions are oddly assembled, and I have a
lot of trouble understanding these for some reason. I know the language, I
know its English, but have to read and re-read and still seem to be
missing plenty. Some odd block I have :-)

But this is just plain neat. I need more. First one is up as my secondary
DNS box. I do need to get it all onto a SD card. Maybe try the distro
called "limey-linux", made for Asterisk...but may work well here. Uses
initrd to load the OS into RAM, but stores on shutdown and pulls from CF
at startup, if you catch the drift. Might be too thin on RAM, but I won't
know till I try it.


GeorgeC

Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!

Quoted text here. Click to load it


To be frank, I have lots of problems understanding it too.
Some real geek gods are letting out the information all over forums
and we the mere mortals have to pick up the morsels and try to assemble them
into something meaningful and coherent because it is a developer system
after all.

I could be 100% wrong here:
The reason why it doesn't load modules using the modprobe command is because
some dependency information about modules is not in the directory
structures. You can recreate it using I think with
  depmod -ae
but I haven't tried it yet.

Another reason I can guess so far is that the kernel needs to be
recompiled with:

    Start by adding kernel sound support

    CONFIG_SOUND=y
    CONFIG_SND=y
    CONFIG_SND_TIMER=y
    CONFIG_SND_PCM=y
    CONFIG_SND_HWDEP=y
    CONFIG_SND_RAWMIDI=y
    CONFIG_SND_SEQUENCER=y
    CONFIG_SND_HRTIMER=y
    CONFIG_SND_SEQ_HRTIMER_DEFAULT=y
    CONFIG_SND_SUPPORT_OLD_API=y
    CONFIG_SND_VERBOSE_PROCFS=y
    CONFIG_SND_DRIVERS=y
    CONFIG_SND_ARM=y
    CONFIG_SND_SPI=y
    CONFIG_SND_USB=y
    CONFIG_SND_USB_AUDIO=y
    CONFIG_SND_USB_CAIAQ=y

    USB sound support:

    CONFIG_SND_USB=y
    CONFIG_SND_USB_AUDIO=y
    CONFIG_SND_USB_CAIAQ=y

You can google for sheevaplug and some of the keywords above to see what
else everyone is saying in order to get sound working.

Also try this link as well:

http://plugcomputer.org/plugwiki/index.php/Category:HowTo



Quoted text here. Click to load it

I'm running open office off of the Sheevaplug - look at list above
of software installed AND running most items simultaneosly!!!

This post is being sent from knode and there is also open applications such
as pan and dillo from the same sheeva plug as well as couple of
ssh sessions and apache all running simultaneously!

Despite that top reckons I'm only using 1% of the CPU.
I don't know whether to laugh or cry.

Lately I've been using nohup command a lot on the sheevaplug.
I log in via ssh to initiate download using nohup command:

nohup wget url_of_file_to_download

and then log out while it continues the download.
Come back a few hours later and its all finished - it frees
up my desktop computer for other experiments.


Quoted text here. Click to load it



Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
On 16 Wrz, 19:03, "http://books.google.com/books ?
id3D%ifqnAAAACAAJ&dq3D%inauthor:%22Russ+Manning
%22&lr3D%&as_brr3D%0&rview3D%1&source3D%gbs_book_other_versions_r&cad3D%2"
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
On 16 Wrz, 19:03, "http://books.google.com/books ?
id3D%ifqnAAAACAAJ&dq3D%inauthor:%22Russ+Manning
%22&lr3D%&as_brr3D%0&rview3D%1&source3D%gbs_book_other_versions_r&cad3D%2"
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
On 16 Wrz, 19:03, "http://books.google.com/books ?
id3D%ifqnAAAACAAJ&dq3D%inauthor:%22Russ+Manning
%22&lr3D%&as_brr3D%0&rview3D%1&source3D%gbs_book_other_versions_r&cad3D%2"
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Re: Sheevaplug - pure Linux geek juice!!!
On 16 Wrz, 19:02, "http://books.google.com/books ?
id3D%ifqnAAAACAAJ&dq3D%inauthor:%22Russ+Manning
%22&lr3D%&as_brr3D%0&rview3D%1&source3D%gbs_book_other_versions_r&cad3D%2"
Quoted text here. Click to load it


Site Timeline