Second Release of Debian 6 for Raspberry Pi

As Raspberry Pi boards have started to ship this week, the Raspberry Pi foundation has also posted a new Debian 6.0 “squeeze” release to the downloads section of this week-end. This release contains several performance enhancements, including enabling the 128K system L2 cache for the first time, and first-cut ALSA drivers. Enabling the L2 cache will boost the ARM CPU performance, however, it may decrease the GPU performance. So this setup is ideal for headless server, but for other applications, for example a media player decoding 1080p30 videos, the performance might actually go down. This is still customizable, as the L2 cache can be enabled / disabled with enable_l2cache parameter in the config.txt file stored on the SD card. The ALSA drivers are here for audio support, so audio output might not have been supported in the first release (TBC), except if they used another type of audio drivers […]

Qt 5 for Raspberry Pi (QtonPi) 0.1 Release

Nokia Qt Labs has announced the very first release of Qt5 for Raspberry: QtonPi 0.1. QtonPi 0.1 includes a pre-alpha release of Qt 5, but Qt 5 alpha will be part of the next release. So bear in mind that it’s likely to be buggy and some features are missing. This release is includes: Base Layer Fedora RPM Packages plus some additional Raspberry Pi specific packages Linaro GCC 4.5.4 toolchain QtonPi image creator and sysroot tools Middleware Documentation on how to get toolchain + sysroot + Qt Creator working to Develop Apps Qt 5 running on full-screen EGFS mode The release can be downloaded via: BitTorrent – qtonpi-0.01.tar.bz2.torrent HTTP Download – qtonpi-0.01.tar.bz2 Alternatively if you are already running the Debian 6 image in the emulator or Raspberry Pi board, you can install the latest snapshot (e.g. nightly build) by adding deb unstable main to /etc/apt/sources.list and run the following […]

Cross-compiling FreeRDP Windows Remote Desktop Client for ARM Linux (in Debian/Ubuntu)

Last month, I wrote the instructions to Cross-compile VMWare View for ARM Linux as I intended to “run” Windows 8 in an ARM client (most likely the Raspberry Pi) via PCoIP. However, the procedure to do so seems slightly complicated and requires to purchase a specific VMWare server software (VMware vSphere 5) or download a free trial. The good news is that there are other options such as VNC or RDP (Remote Desktop protocol) and Remmina, a Remote Connection client is available for Linux. As nothing is ever simple, another issue occured: if you are using a stable release of Linux (e.g. Debian Squeeze, Ubuntu 11.10) they come with older version of Remmina and either the connection is successful but the display is garbled (Version 0.7.x) either it crashes when connecting to Windows 8 via RDP (Version 0.8.x). The latest version (Remmina 1.0.0) fixes the problem and is available in […]

How to Install Windows 8 in Linux with QEMU

Microsoft has just released Windows 8 Consumer Preview. Here’s a method to install Windows 8 in Linux using KVM and Qemu. You can use this beta version of Windows 8 until the 15th of January 2013, after which it will be unusable. Here are the requirements to install Windows 8: 1 GHz Processor or greater 1 GB RAM 20 GB free storage for the 64-bit version Before you start, make sure your processor supports Intel Virtualization Technology (VT) or AMD’s AMD V CPU virtualization extensions. Type this command to check vmx or svm flags:

If this is the case, you can install KVM. Type the following command for RPM-based distributions such as Fedora:

or the following command for Debian or Ubuntu:

Then download the ISO image of Windows 8 on Microsoft website (64-bit version) :

Create a 20 GB virtual hard drive to install Windows 8: […]

Raspberry Pi Releases 1st SD Card Image (Debian) – How-to use it in QEMU

The Raspberry Pi Foundation has just released the first SD Card Image that you will be able to use with your Raspberry Pi board. This image is based on Debian Squeeze (6.0) and comes with  LXDE user interface and Midori browser, development tools, and sample code for accessing the multimedia functionality on the device. You can download it using BitTorrent: (preferred method) or via one of the many http mirrors available on RPi Community page. This image contains all necessary files including the binary blob and closed source libraries, the kernel and the root file systems. If you want to to prepare an SD Card with this image simply use dd in Linux: unzip sudo dd if=debian6-17-02-2012/debian6-17-02-2012.img of={sd_card_path} where sd_card_path is the device pointing to you SD Card (e.g. /dev/sdc). Make sure you use the correct device (e.g. with fdisk -l) or you may wipeout your hard drive […]

Debian is Worth a Lot (Yet it’s Free) and C/C++ Language Still Rules

James E. Bromberger (JEB) , a contributor to Perl CPAN and Debian, has estimated the cost of developing Debian Wheezy (7.0) from scratch based on the the number of lines of code (LOC) counted with SLOCCount tool, the Constructive Cost Model (COCOMO) and the average wage of a developer of 72,533 USD (using median estimates from and for 2011). He found 419,776,604 lines of code in 31 programming languages giving an estimated cost of producing Debian Wheezy in February 2012 of 19 billion US dollar (14.4 Billion Euros), making each package source code (out of the 17,141 packages) worth an average of 1,112,547.56 USD to produce. He also estimated the cost of Linux 3.1.8 Kernel with almost 10 millions lines of source code would be worth 540 million USD at standard complexity, or 1.877 billions USD when rated as ‘complex’. I don’t know which tool he used for […]

Cross-compiling VMWare View for ARM Linux (in Debian/Ubuntu)

Earlier this month, I wrote an article about PCoIP Technology which shows an Android application (VMWare View) running on an OMAP4 Tablet displaying a Windows 7 desktop. This remote desktop technology relies on a powerful server to do the processing and thin clients (in that case Tablets) to display the desktop. Since only pixels are transferred any OS (supported by the server) could be displayed in the thin client. That made me wonder if there was an open source PCoIP client that could run on low end Linux client such as the Raspberry Pi. VMWare View Open Client provides just what we need, but is only available in source code so we need to cross-compile it for ARM or build it in an ARM machine. Today, I’ll show the instructions I followed to cross-compile it for ARM in Debian using Emdebian Toolchain. First download and extract VMware View Open Client […]

Yocto Project Quick Start Guide for Ubuntu

Yocto is an embedded Linux build system used to create a Linux distribution for a specific application/board combination. I’ll describe 2 methods to get started: Building and running  a qemu image for x86 from scratch Using pre-built binaries to run the x86 image in qemu This is a shorter version of the longish Yocto Project’s Quick Start Guide. The official guide is more complete (explains all details) and give instructions for several distributions, whereas this guide simply lists each step and is focused on Ubuntu. So you could use this guide to start the build, and during the build (which will last a while), read the official guide to actually understand how it all works.   Prerequisites First, you need to use bash instead of dash in Ubuntu:

and select “No” to use bash. Then install the required packages with apt-get:

Building and running a qemu image for […]