Tag Archives: donations

UDS-O

This week I am in Budapest, Hungary attending Ubuntu Developer Summit for 11.10 ‘oneiric’ release discussions. But this is not only Ubuntu — there is huge amount of Linaro people discussing what to do next cycle.

Sunday

Travel, travel, travel… Usual way — bus from home to Berlin airport (SXF this time) where I met with Henning ‘woglinde’ Heinold to donate my old Linksys WRT54 which I got donated few years ago to be able to use my Zauruses wireless. Router had to be in use on OpenEmbedded stand at LinuxTag, Berlin — go there and visit them at booth 7.2b 112.

Again flight was with Easyjet. It is cheap airline but with speedy boarding it is good enough to go with. Bad side is that it lands at old terminal 1 in Budapest so I had to go to hotel by my own.

Evening was Canonical only meeting where there was a presentation of some things which will go into 11.10 Ubuntu release (nearly same to next day keynote). After food, discussions and finally sleep ;D

Monday

Sessions started — I attended few:

  • Ubuntu LEB documentation
  • cross toolchain user stories — my own session where most of time Micheal Hope was telling us about requests which Toolchain WG got
  • user stories for nano image
  • DMB regular meeting — I became Ubuntu developer during it!

During evening was ‘Meet & Greet’ social event sponsored by Openstack and Freescale. Nice way to catch with people. Especially when you meet old friends which you never met in person ;D I met Marek Szyprowski which whom I was writing to Polish Amiga paper magazine named ‘eXec’ (but website with similar name does not have nothing in common now). We talked for quite long time about misc things. Also met some other folks, refreshed faces memory etc.

Tuesday

Sessions:

  • cross toolchain user stories (again) — we discussed notes from previous day, decided on some details and created work items so I can start working on it
  • Ubuntu LEB documentation (also again)
  • Linaro Ubuntu LEB process for 11.11
  • GDB as cross debugger

As you see LEB was topic of a day. And it was not everything — next day was another session.

Evening was taken by The Linaro Technical Showcase sponsored by IBM. What was there? Many interesting things:

  • Arnd Bergmann was talking why class4 SD card can be much better then class10 one
  • Freescale Landing Team was presenting i.mx53 Quick Start boards
  • Ash Charles from Gumstix was presenting their new miniboards with DM37xx cpus and few carrier boards
  • Paweł Moll from ARM was presenting Cortex A15 running from two biggest FPGA chips. It had just 11MHz clock but it was enough to show Doom game running on connected monitor.
  • Oxlab guys shown their work on Android and how you can hibernate BeagleBoard
  • ST-Ericsson guys presented Snowball boards — we had a talk on some hardware details
  • Konstantinos Margaritis shown what kind of difference can be between armel and armhf ports on same hardware
  • Angus Ainslie presented Samsung developer board and we had interesting discussion about it

I do not remember all presentations — those ones interested me most. ARM one was amazing — huge FPGAs which were able to emulate A15, A5, A9 just by booting with different MicroSD card… And it is not related only to CPU emulation cause there were two expansion slots on mainboard so FPGAs can became graphics card with Mali core flashed into. Second board was ‘simple’ A9 with Mali and some OpenGL(ES) demo was running there.

And again — new faces to join with names. Talked with Ash Charles about discussions in past when I helped Gumstix developers with OpenEmbedded, Angus Ainslie from ST-Ericsson was working for Openmoko at time when we had cooperation and so on…

Wednesday

Woke up early… What to do after 6:10? Go swimming! So I went to Royal SPA and spent some time in swimming pool and sauna so day started nicely.

Sessions:

  • automated cross-buildd system/service
  • Ubuntu LEB Star Rating documentation — my session again on how we want to rate level of support of member boards
  • ARM Linus interface 3 — attended just to check how kernel developers are discussing how to improve arch/arm/ situation

Met Mark Brown with whom I was working in OpenEmbedded project and after lunch I went to do some sight seeing with Paweł Moll. Budapest is nice city and I have to came back here one day.

Team dinner somewhere in the city was quite good. We had a fun going back to hotel when ~half of us used phones to navigate though city ;D

Thursday

Sessions:

  • arm and other archs certification program — Canonical has certification program of machines which came with Ubuntu pre-installed. I have to check at their tools.
  • ALIP mini-distro and build system user/developer stories — interesting discussion
  • cross-toolchains for the ARM hard-float ABI — will have to provide them for Ubuntu and other but it is doable
  • next steps with multiarch in Ubuntu — where do we go and how

Evening was sight seeing with local guides. We saw parlament building, chain bridge, castle area and ended in interesting pub.

Friday

Ending day and nearly no sessions today:

  • port to the ARM hard-float ABI — Ubuntu armhf someone?
  • Linaro Review of LDS week
  • easier access to -dbgsym packages

Some of people already packed and left, rest will go to have fun at UDS party.

Summary

It was my third UDS and I feel that it was best one. I had two blueprints to handle and both had great discussions which ended in many notes and work items. There was lot of people both from Ubuntu community and Linaro teams. I met many developers, some old friends, went to so many sessions that it took me most of time (I do not remember is list in post is complete).

It was nice to see amount of ARM netbooks at people hands — mostly Genesi Smartbooks but also several Toshiba AC100 ones. I think that it shows that times are changing and who knows… maybe at next event I will not use my ASUS UL30A laptop.

And this is another UDS with some added hardware. This time it is Pandaboard A1 which can replace my EA1 at my work for Linaro. Probably will keep both running one to another but one (EA1) with Ubuntu and second (A1) will be used for misc tests.

Now it is a time to drop laptop in hotel room and go for party!!!

OpenZaurus time is over – long live Ångström

Some time ago new kernel hacker joined team of people working on 2.6 kernel for Zaurus machines — Thomas Kunze gave us SD/MMC driver for collie and works on other subsystems to get this machine working. As result collie got added into list of Ångström supported devices and test images were generated.

Also during last time people were asking Koen Kooi when Ångström is going to be released. He usually answered that it depends on OpenZaurus release plans (OZ first).

But we lack developers to work on two distros in one time. Release of OpenZaurus 3.5.4/3.5.4.1 took me few months of work as I had to organize beta testing program, build images, fix bugs, find someone to work on documentation, build feeds. Then due to limited access to main mirror I had to work on upgrades feeds. Those tasks will be split to more people in Ångström.

As a result I was going to tell world that there will be no new OpenZaurus releases ever. But I did not wanted to sound like dictator — I asked other developers on openzaurus-devel ML what they think. There were 3 options:

  1. we release OpenZaurus 3.5.5 for all Zaurus models
  2. we release OpenZaurus 3.5.5 for Collie/2.4 only
  3. we close OpenZaurus history and switch to Ångström

During week twelve persons replied — no one chosen option 1st or 2nd…

So Ångström is a future for our machines — and many others already supported in OpenEmbedded. End of OpenZaurus does not mean that Zaurus models are obsolete or that users need to switch to pdaXrom or Cacko.

It needs work to create nicely working distribution which will use up-to-date technologies, will base on current software etc. Personally I do not even plan to look at 2.4 kernel for Zaurus any more — it was ‘created’ in such bad way that… no comment

What does OpenZaurus meant to me?

For me it was really nice to have OpenZaurus on each Zaurus model which I had in my hands. It started with SL-5500 collie which I bought for quite big amount of cash (about 2/3 of my month salary), then was C760 donated by Richard Jackson. Later I got SL-5600 and SL-6000 donated by anonymous donor from USA. During OEDEM I got SL-C3000 from Mickeyl and gave him SL-5600 instead. Now SL-C3000 is in Rolf Leggewie hands and SL-6000 waits for developer which would like to work on improving support for it (SL-5600/6000/C3000 are OpenEmbedded project devices).

Thanks to OpenZaurus I started to use OpenEmbedded. First as stupid novice, then advanced user finally one of core developers. Without playing with those systems I would not be the person which I am today. Since I left my previous work as PHP programmer I finally do what I like to do (and I am paid for it).

Without playing with it I would not have all those gadgets/toys which I have here.

I would like to thanks for some persons:

  • Chris ‘kergoth’ Larson for starting work on OpenZaurus distro
  • Michael ‘mickeyl’ Lauer for maintaining OZ
  • Richard ‘rp’ Purdie for maintaining Linux-2.6 for all Zaurus models
  • John Lenz for starting work on getting Linux-2.6 working on collie
  • Dirk Opfer for Tosa part
  • Graeme ‘xora’ Gregory for being one of most active Zaurus developers
  • Koen Kooi for maintaining Ångström distro
  • Scott Bronson and Simon ‘lardman’ Pickering for work on OpenZaurus documentation
  • Thomas Kunze for work on SD/MMC driver for collie
  • all other OpenZaurus hackers

For all time which they spend on getting Zaurus machines supported.

FOSDEM 2007

FOSDEM 2007 is ending now. This was my first one and I enjoyed it. I met so many people, which I know from IRC, that I can not even list them :)

Lot of interesting devices we had on OpenEmbedded booth including:

  • Neo1973 phone (OpenMoko powered) prototypes
  • Trolltech Greenphone (which got donated by Trolltech)
  • Skeye.pad brought by Kernel concepts
  • Skeye.integral (also brought by KC)
  • Motorola A780 phone with GPE^2
  • Ipaq 5xxx running OpenZaurus (unofficial image)

First day took more of my attention then second because I spend more time on OE booth answering lot of of questions from users, other developers, giving informations about OE, what software is running on Neo1973 phone (and showing same software on my Progear webpad)… I also managed to view some talks. At the end of a day I was so tired that I get to the bed and slept whole night.

Second day was a bit other. I had more talks on a list, there was GnuPG keysigning party too. One of talks was Lorn Potter talk about Qtopia which was too boring. The funny moment was when I get back to the booth one time and was asked by someone who I do not met before (he was Michael Dominic Kostrzewa (one of Maemo developers)) “Do you have Nokia770 device?” After my negative answer I got brand new Nokia770 device (it is charging now). So probably soon new device will join Angström world :)

Tomorrow we will have small OE discussion session and return to homes.

Next year I will be here for 100% :)

Paypal in Poland

Paypal now officially supports Poland in both ways (previously it only allowed to send cash from Poland). So I decided to create account. From now I can accept donations via:

  • Moneybookers where I have account donations[at]blog.haerwu.biz
  • Paypal where my account is named paypal@blog.haerwu.biz.

I did not yet tested Paypal one.

Private support emails

Over week ago Jeff Garzik wrote on LKML about private mails with support requests. Yesterday RMK started similiar thread on LAKML. After reading whole discussion I decided to write what do I think about it as I am also getting such requests in private.

From time to time someone asks me for help (nevermind which way: email, irc, jabber, forum message) even in subjects which were very often discussed or are in OpenZaurus FAQ. I have many things to do and answering to all such requests are very low priority — sometimes I answer after 2 weeks (if at all). Sometimes I do not know answer and redirect author to forum or mailing list.

On the other hand there are requests are about adding software into OpenZaurus feeds or providing support for exotic hardware. If software == unmaintained, very low quality applications for Qtopia enviroments (I wrote about them already) then I refuse to touch them at all as this takes too much time to get good results (tried once with Mileage). Another thing is hardware support — it is hard to support something which I lack (did it once with CF-XGA card) but even if I have it support can be hard because lack of time (like it was with Ir keyboard).

From time to time I am getting offer or paying development but thats other story :D

Why Ask Questions in Public? is also worth reading.

Tosa USB experiences

Yesterday I got USB Host cable from Trisoft (donated like I wrote before) so I decided to check how it works.

First try was my TDK Bluetooth dongle which I got year ago. Installed kernel-module-hci-usb, connected dongle and it was not working. So I rebooted and after reboot and manual module loading I got hci0 shown in hciconfig output. But I was unable to do any scanning for devices.

Then I disconnected BT and connected my few years old 64M pendrive. Tosa did not even notice that change… so I did another reboot. After that I got /dev/sda1 mountable and working.

In next weeks (plan to have 2 week vacations) I plan to test some more USB equipment — plan to buy powered hub, already have multiport card reader, will borrow USB keyboard etc. And most important thing — test 2.6 kernel on tosa.

OE/OZ project devices arrived

About one month ago one OpenZaurus user contacted me and Michael ‘mickeyl’ Lauer with info that he want to donate two Zaurus machines to project — SL-6000L (tosa) and SL-5600 (poodle). After some discussion we decided that both machines will be sent to me. I will keep tosa for some time to resolve some of bugs, poodle will go to Mickeyl when we will meet in Berlin during OpenEmbedded developer meeting. Both machines are added into OpenEmbedded project devices.

As donor could not send them overseas I contacted Aman ‘TheMasterMind1′ Gupta (one of old time OpenZaurus developers) and he agreed to get them and resent to me. Last Friday I got mail from customs office that package wait for me. I went there, paid 22% VAT (110 USD) and got box with two Zauruses.

Now I’m charging Tosa — it’s huge but this screen is awesome! Now I understand why people want it in clamshells — Sharp do you hear it? Stop using screen from c700 and move to something new! I also played a bit with SharpROM (last time I used SharpROM over two years ago with my collie) and I can say that it looks nice but I feel slowdowns too often, weird behaviour on application close, handling QVGA apps is weird for me too. Too bad that I cannot test USB Host functionality — Sharp forgot to add proper cable and they are hard to buy (USB mini-A connector) but I found them in Trisoft offer so maybe will get it soon.

UPDATE: I contacted Trisoft and they will send me USB host cable for free. I also ordered one for our main tosa kernel hacker Dirk Opfer (also free). It is good that such companies exists — without them getting Zaurus and accessories in Europe would be hard.

During evening I plan to find time to flash tosa to OpenZaurus 3.5.4 + upgrades and check what need to be fixed. Too bad that wlan-ng driver for Prism2 USB lack WPA — I will have to lower security of my home AP — now it is WPA-PSK but will move to WEP so Tosa will connect with internal wifi. Next I will check how poodle works but this machine is something which I prefer to not touch too much rather — it’s 2.4 support was already marked as ‘terrible, awful’ and we want to move into 2.6 kernel on it. I will check how both machines works with 2.6.17 and maybe will try to hack it a bit — time will show.