Linaro 13.03 Release with Linux Kernel 3.9 and Android 4.2.2

Linaro 13.03 is now available, and features Linux Kernel 3.9-rc3 and Android 4.2.2. This month, Linaro has released their first Origen Quad Android image, as well as Tiny Android build for Arndale. The ALIP image listed in the download page is still based on Ubuntu 12.11, but as doc Bormental noticed earlier this month, the latest ALIP Quantal 13.03 image is available for download at https://releases.linaro.org/latest/ubuntu/quantal-images/alip. Some development tools (gcc, g++, vi, make..) are now included in Android, so you can develop and build natively from your Android device. Linaro has kept on cleaning the Linux kernel ARM tree for Exynos and ST Ericson SoCs. More work has been done on big.LITTLE for both IKS and HMP, as well as ARMv8 OpenEmbedded, and an initial GRUB port on ARM UEFI is now available. Here are the highlights of this release: Automation and Validation A simple CLI tool for communicating with the CI dashboard has been developed LAVA supports Arndale booting …

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Cubieboard Unboxing and Quick Start Guide

I’ve received another cool board this week with the Cubieboard development board. As a quick reminder, the Cubieboard is the only proper low cost AllWinner A10 development board available, and comes with 512MB/1GB RAM, 4GB NAND Flash, 10/100 MBit Ethernet, HDMI output, 2x USB Host port, 1x USB OTG port, a microSD socket, a SATA interface, an IR sensor and 2 headers to access extra pins such as GPIOs, I2C, SPI,VGA pins, CVBS pins etc… CubieTech had a successful Indiegogo campaign where the 1GB board was available for $59 including worldwide shipping (and as low as $19 for early birds), and you can now buy it from resellers. [Update: It’s now available with several cables, USB to TTL debug board, and an enclosure for $80 on dx.com] Cubieboard Unboxing The board comes with a SATA cable and a USB cable for power. There’s no power supply so you’ll need you own, either using the USB cable provided, or a standard …

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AllWinner A10 Initramfs Support and Linaro 12.07 Image

An initramfs is a minimal root filesystem that is loaded at an early stage of the boot process, before the rootfs partition is mounted. This is optional but is now used by many Linux distributions such as Ubuntu in order to speed up boot time among others things. Up to recently, there was no support for this in the AllWinner A10 nightly builds, and there would be lot of error messages due to ureadahead process with Ubuntu, but I’ve changed that by: Using a boot.scr file (U-Boot Script) for each supported device in order to either follow the default init boot method or do an initramfs boot if uInitrd file is present in the FAT partition. Adding a script (a1x-initramfs.sh) to generate and install uInitrd initramfs in the rootfs. The initramfs can’t be generated at build time since the hardware packs are (mostly) distribution agnostic. If you want an initramfs, you’ll need to run the script manually, as initramfs support …

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Linaro 12.07 Release with Kernel 3.5 and Android 4.0.4

Linaro has released version 12.07 based on Linux Kernel 3.5-rc3 and Android 4.0.4. Some work has been done on Jelly Bean (but the port is for next month), several benchmark tools have been added to LAVA as Linaro wants to provide standard benchmarks for Android, Linaro ALIP image now uses LXDE by default with a smaller image and improved performance, and Open Embedded images are now available (minimal and LAMP stack). Here are the highlights of the release: Android Jellybean baselines for Galaxy and Panda with Linaro extra’s available Android Benchmarking apps were deployed for pandaboard, snowball and origen in LAVA including: vellamo, quadrant, nbench, linpack, glbenchmark, geekbench, caffeinemark, antutu, andebench Improved native Benchmarks variance on Android to 1%, working on Java variance ICS “tests” builds now produced by default and test lists generated Open overlay tarballs working pm-qa’s cpuidle cpufreq cpuhotplug sched_mc suspend integrated into the Android builds Linaro Android Snowball 4.0.4 is now in par with Snowball 4.0.3 …

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Xibo Digital Signage Running on Mele A1000 AllWinner A10 Set-Top Box

Those following my blog know that I recently bought a Mele A1000 to play around. For those who are not familiar with this device, the Mele A1000 is a $70 Android set-top box featuring an AllWinner A10 cortex A8 processor and lots of peripherals, and it can easily be hacked to run a Linux distributions. This hardware would also be a great digital signage player thanks to its video playback capabilities: up to 2160p video decoding and 1080p video output. Last year, I ported Xibo, an open source digital signage player, to ARM and ran it in the Beagleboard emulator (qemu), but I hadn’t had the opportunity to try it out in a real hardware. I’ve tried this rootfs based on Linaro ARM Linux Internet Platform (ALIP) image for BeagleBoard in the Mele A1000, by following an adaptation of the method I provided earlier. For this demo, I created a layout in Xibo dashboard with 4 zones as pictured above: …

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