Tuxera FAT+ File System for Embedded Systems is Compatible with FAT32, Faster, and Supports Files up to 16TB

July 27th, 2017 9 comments

Tuxera has introduced FAT+, a new file system for removable storage on embedded systems that’s compatible with FAT32 but without the limitations such as the 4GB file size limit, and brings fail-safety and performance optimization. FAT+ is allegedly one of the recommended file systems by the Universal Flash Storage Association (UFSA) for the next-generation Universal Flash Storage (UFS) cards. Some of the key features of Tuxera FAT+ implementation include: Supported Operating Systems – Android, Linux, Chrome OS, Firefox OS, Tizen Hardware Architecture – ARM, ARM64, Intel x86/x86_64 or compatible, MIPS, MIPS64, PowerPC, SH4, and more Capacity Maximum volume size – 2 TiB with 512-byte sectors,  16 TiB with 4096-byte sectors Maximum allocation block size – sector size in bytes x 128 Maximum file size – 16 TiB Maximum filename length – 255 characters (16-bit) Supported sector sizes – 512, 1024, 2048, and 4096 bytes Interoperability Conforms to all Microsoft FAT versions including XP, Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows…

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HTTM Backlit Capacitive Touch Switch / Button Sells for about one Dollar

July 27th, 2017 No comments

You may have some project that requires buttons to turn on and off devices, or perform other tasks like navigating a user interface or playing games. One interesting and inexpensive solution for this could be HTTM (HelTec Touch Model) capacitive touch buttons that include three pins for power, ground, and the button status, as well as a backlight. You’ll find them on many websites, and one of the cheapest option is a pack of 10 buttons going for $9.91 on Aliexpress. HTTM button specifications: Voltage input range: + 2.7v to + 6v Signal output – Voltage: + 3.3v; Current up to 500 mA Header – 3-pin with GND, VCC, and OUT Backlight color – red, blue (cyan), or yellow Dimensions – 20.4 x 16.6 mm Operating temperature range: -30 ℃ to + 70 ℃ You’ll find more details on the manufacturer’s product page including a user manual (Chinese only), and their DIYtrade page implies they may have versions with up…

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Running Ubuntu 16.04 on MeLE PCG03 Apo Mini PC

July 27th, 2017 4 comments

I completed my review of MeLE PCG03 Apo mini PC with Windows 10 about two weeks ago, and at the time when I tried Ubuntu, all I got was a black screen. MeLE said they would release an Ubuntu image for the board soon, so I did not investigate further. The company has now released Ubuntu 16.04 Desktop ISO via a link on Twitter together with (partial) instructions, and the company told me another company had worked on the image. I sent the link to Linuxium, as in the past MeLE or that other company used his work without asking. I turns out the ISO was identical to Ubuntu 16.04 Desktop ISO released in April last year.

Anyway, I still got the black screen issue using that image, and that’s because I first failed to find the option in the BIOS to change boot to Linux. When the mini PC starts, press the Esc key to enter Aptio Setup…

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Meizu Pro 7 is a Dual Camera Dual Display Android Smartphone

July 27th, 2017 No comments

Smartphones with dual rear cameras are becoming more common, and we’ve see some smartphones in the past with an extra rear display such as Yotaphone 2. Meizu Pro 7 and Pro 7 Plus smartphones combines both features, but instead of using an E-Ink or other e-Paper display for the secondary display, Meizu used an 1.9″ AMOLED display that automatically turns on when you flip the phone, and can be used to check the time or notifications while the main display is still off. Meizu Pro 7 / Pro 7 Plus partial specifications: SoC – Mediatek Helio X30 deca-core processor with 2x cortex A73 cores @ up to 2.6 GHz, 4x cortex A53 cores @ up to 2.2 GHz, and 4x cortex A35 cores @ up to 2.0 GHz, as well as Imagination PowerVR 7XT GPU System Memory Pro 7 – 4GB LPDDR4x Pro 7 Plus – 6GB LPDDR4x Storage Pro 7 – 64 eMMC 5.1 flash storage Pro 7 Plus…

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Beelink S1 Mini PC Comes with Up to 8GB RAM, Supports M.2 SSD & SATA Storage, and Cortana via a Built-in Microphone

July 26th, 2017 8 comments

While many Apollo Lake mini PCs are sold by Chinese manufacturers, few of come with up to 8GB RAM, and include an internal 2.5″ SATA bay. But Beelink S1 mini PC does, and it also include an M.2 SSD slot, so you can have fast storage for the operating system using an SSD, and cheap and larger storage for your data with the SATA bay. If you are a fan of voice commands, a built-in microphone working with Cortana is also included. Beelink S1 mini PC specifications: SoC – Intel Celeron N3450 quad core Apollo Lake processor @ 1.10 GHz / 2.20 GHz (Burst frequency) with 12 EU Intel HD graphics 500 @ 200/700 MHz  (6W TDP) System Memory – 4 or 8 GB DDR3 Storage – 64 GB eMMC flash, internal SATA bay, M.2 SSD slot up to 512 GB, micro SD card slot up to 128GB Video Output – HDMI 1.4 up to 4K @ 30 Hz, VGA…

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Hologram LTE Software-Defined Global Network for Cellular IoT Projects Starts at $0.40 per Month per Device

July 26th, 2017 7 comments

Cellular connectivity can be rather expensive, and in the IoT realms, new LTE standards are still evolving and you may want to manage your own mini cellular network, so ideally we would need a provider that offers both low cost and flexibility. Hologram LTE network does both as it’s a software-defined network, and pricing starts at $5 for the SIM card and $0.40 per month per device. The company also just announced that their network was available for global deployment with the service available in more than 170 countries via partnerships through over 200 cellular carriers. The SIM card supports automatic roaming and carrier switching, and spacebridge inbound tunnel access allows for secure remote programming and device management. The SIM card specifications are as follows: 2G/GPRS, 3G HSPDA, 4G LTE Read/Write Cycles: Min. 500,000 Operating Temperature: -25°C ~ 85°C Data Retention: Min. 25 years at 25°C Triple-cut for Mini, Micro, and Nano SIM formats Mini: 15 x 25mm Micro: 12…

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Intel Curie Module, Arduino 101 Board Are Being Discontinued (Too)

July 26th, 2017 No comments

Intel seems to have completely given up on its efforts to bring products specific to the Internet of Things. After discontinuing Intel Edison, Galileo and Joule boards & modules last month, forcing companies to look for alternatives, the company has now issued product discontinuance / end-of-life notices for Intel Curie Module and Arduino 101 board, itself based on the Curie module. The two product change notification notice can be found below for: Select Intel Curie Module Products – PDF Select Intel Arduino 101 Products – PDF The use of the word “Select” would normally mean some versions of the module and board won’t be affected, but I fail to see which ones here, as AFAIK there’s only one Arduino 101 board, and two variants of Curie modules, all three to be discontinued. Arduino 101 will be phased out faster with the following milestones: July 17, 2017 – Product Discontinuance Program Support Begins September 17, 2017 – Last Product Discontinuance Order…

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HiMedia Q30 TV Box Review – Part 2: Android 7.0 Nougat Firmware

July 25th, 2017 1 comment

HiMedia Q30 is an Android Nougat TV box powered by Hisilicon Hi3798MV200 processor, a cost-down version of Hi3798C V200 processor with the same CPU, a lower-end Mali-450MP GPU, about the same media capabilities, and less I/Os. I’ve taken pictures of the device and board if the first part of the review entitled “HiMedia Q30 (Hisilicon Hi3798MV200) Android TV Box Review – Part 1: Unboxing and Teardown“, so today, I’ll report about my experience with the device while running Android 7.0. First Boot, Setup, and First Impressions I’ve connected a USB 3.0 hard drive to the single USB 3.0 port, and filled the two other USB 2.0 ports with a USB keyboard, and a USB hub with two RF dongles for an air mouse and a gamepad. I added Ethernet, HDMI, and power cable to start the device. A typical boot takes around 25 seconds to the Android launcher below. That’s your typical TV launcher with date and connection status on…

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