At the beginning of the year, PicUntu had been released for Rk3066 HDMI TV sticks, but as quad core devices based on RK3188 became popular, work started as soon as the source code was available, and a preliminary version of Linux ran on some RK3188 devices in June. After 4 more months of development an installer for PicUntu 4.5 has been released to allow users to run a customized version of Ubuntu 13.04 on RK3188 HDMI TV sticks or set-top boxes such as T428 or Rikomagic MK802 IV.
The installation procedure appears to be easier than earlier version, as there’s only one installer file (247 MB), and you can complete the installation to the NAND flash of your device with just 4 clicks.
PicUnutu runs xfce4 desktop environment, supports more than 200 drivers, multiple file systems (nfs, ntfs, cramfs, cifsutils, smb…), lots of different USB devices, serial devices, GPS devices, touchscreen. etc… WiFi is also supposed to work, but maybe for not all devices, unless you use a supported external USB dongle. However, hardware video acceleration, Bluetooth and some touchscreens do not work. However it’s still possible to play 720p videos smoothly using software video decoding.
Some important things to bear in mind is that this installation will completely wipe out your Android OS and existing files, you may void your warranty, and you may potentially brick your device, although the developers have yet to see it occur.
Brad Linder (Liliputing) has tried it on T518 mini PC, and found it to be as responsive as Ubuntu on Intel and AMD machines. Ditching Unity and replacing it by XFCE certainly helped here. He could not get WiFi to work, so testing was limited without Internet connection.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.
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