Android 4.4 and Ubuntu 14.10 Tested on Ugoos UM3 mini PC (Rockchip RK3288)

A few days ago I posted pictures of Ugoos UM3, a cute mini PC powered by Rockchip RK3288 quad core Cortex A17 processor, with 2GB RAM, 8GB internal storage, a few USB ports, and Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n/ac connectivity. There are so many Rockchip RK3288 based TV boxes and sticks on the market, that it has become difficult to differentiate, so Ugoos has decided to support not only Android 4.4 like all their competitors, but also Ubuntu 14.10, and they’ve provided an alpha release of dual boot Android / Ubuntu images for Ugoos UT3 and UM3 models. Yesterday, I flashed the latest Android/Ubuntu firmware for UM3, and tested the image, so today I can report my findings. First of all, I’d like to point out that I received an earlier sample with various flaws that I reported to Ugoos, and they’ve already committed to fixes: 5V/2A power adapter is not powerful enough to drive the box and an external hard drive, …

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Rikomagic MK902 II Android TV Box with Rockchip RK3288 Coming Soon

Rikomagic MK902 is an Android mini PC powered by Rockchip RK3188 quad core processor, and there’s even a Linux version. The company has announced it has been working on an upgrade of the device named MK902 II, and powered by Rockchip RK3288. It will initially sell with Android, but I would not be surprised with a PicUntu version is also sold later, and even an MK 902 II Chromebox could hit the market, since Rockchip released Chromium OS overlay files for RK3288. They’ve also provide MK902 II specifications: SoC – Rockchip 3288 quad core ARM Cortex A17 up to 1.8 GHz with Mali-T764 GPU System Memory – 2G DDR3 Storage – 8 or 16 GB flash + micro SD slot (up to 32GB) Video Output – HDMI, AV Audio Output / Input – HDMI, stereo audio (via AV port), optical S/PDIF, microphone Video Codecs – MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, H.263, H.264, H.265, AVS, VC-1, RV, VP6/VP8, MVC (1080p) Sorenson Spark, MVC …

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Linux Kernel Source Code and Chromium OS Overlay for Rockchip RK3288

A few days ago, we’ve seen Chromium OS running on Rockchip RK3288 development platform. I’ve been informed the source code could have already been released via the newly registered rkchrome github account with Linux kernel 3.10.30 and the overlay files to build Chromium OS for RK3288. There’s also a u-boot repository but it is currently empty.  This Linux kernel can also boot Rockchip RK3188 based Radxa Rock development board, but more tests are needed to see if it’s really usable. I’ll have a look at the Linux kernel, and try to build it, and leave the Chromium OS part for later or other people. Let’s retrieve the source code: We’ve got two kernel config files related to Rockchip in arch/arm/config: But since this is a recent 3.10 kernel with support for Flattened Device Tree support, and multi-platform support, there’s not much to be seen in these files, and we have to go to arch/arm/boot/dts/ where we can find several rk3188 …

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Rockchip RK3288 based Android and Chromium OS Tablets and TV Boxes (Video)

After the first RK3288 Android TV boxes started to be promoted on Alibaba, and the first RK3288 board was shown, Rockchip is currently showing their quad core Cortex A17 processor in reference designs, tablets, and TV boxes running Android or Chromium OS at the Hong Kong Electronics Fair. Charbax interviewed the company, and the first demo was a development board connected to an LCD display running Chromium OS, which is said to handle 30 tabs without issues. Rockchip RK3288 is now advertised as being a quad core Cortex A17 with a Mali-T764 GPU, but when Rockchip representative was asked, he strangely denied to comment on whether it was a Cortex A12 or A17, as both are very similar. He also said the GPU was a Mali-T760MP4… If this seems all confusing that’s because it is… Some interesting things are H.265/HEVC support for 4K2K videos, and HDMI 2.0 for 4K @ 60 fps video output. Moving on, some TV boxes and …

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Google Announces Blink, a Fork of WebKit Rendering Engine for Chromium

WebKit rendering engine has been used by Chromium since the start of the project, but Chromium uses a different multi-process architecture than other WebKit-based browsers, and this has made maintenance increasingly complex, and Google intends to investigate other performance improvement strategies. Those 2 reasons explain why the company has announced it would fork WebKit and start working on its own open source rendering engine called Blink. Google tells web developers that in the short term, Blink will bring little change to them, as most of the work will focus on architectural improvements as well as code cleanup with about 7,000 files, corresponding to 4.5 millions line of code, to be deleted. One of the main changes will be “out-of-process iframes“, where the rendering engine will start a sandbox process for each individual parts of the page in order to render it faster. This has been planned for a while, but since implementing it in WebKit would have broken other people …

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Getting Started with MultiArch (armel / armhf) in Ubuntu

Until now, I used xapt and dpkg-cross to install cross libraries for armel, but since I’ve upgraded to Ubuntu 12.04, it appears to be broken. I’ve contacted Linaro about this issue, and the “cross-building” expert at Linaro (wookey) recommended me to use multiarch instead, as xapt/dpkg-cross will be eventually deprecated. He provided me an example showing how-to use multiarch to build Chromium. I’ve been looking for a “How-to multiarch”, but haven’t been able to find something really clear and simple, so I thought I would post it here. In the example, they used a chroot for cross-building, which is probably a good idea to avoid messing up with the system. It’s also possible multiarch is not 100% reliable, and I’ve read stories where people messed up their system when using multiarch with i386 (32-bit) and amd64 (64-bit). Preparing a chroot for cross-building I’ll use a 32-bit Ubuntu precise chroot, but you can use an older distribution (e.g. oneric) and 64-bit …

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Google Releases Chrome for Android (Beta)

Google has introduced the beta version of Chrome for Android, bringing Chrome’s capabilities to smartphones and tablets running Android 4.0 (but not earlier versions). The key features of Chrome for Android: View open tabs: Access the tabs you left open on your computer (also signed into Chrome)—picking up exactly where you left off.  Swipe on your mobile device to switch between tabs. Get smarter suggestions: If you visit a site often on your computer, you’ll also get an auto-complete suggestion for it on your mobile device, so you can spend less time typing. Sync bookmarks: Access your favorite sites no matter which device you are using. You can watch the teaser video below. On the technical side, Chrome for Android brings support for many of the latest HTML5 features to the Android platform including hardware-accelerated canvas, overflow scroll support, HTML5 video. Chrome for Android also brings new capabilities such as Indexed DB, WebWorkers and Web Sockets. Google added remote debugging …

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Cross-compiling Berkelium for ARMv6 with Emdebian Toolchain

Berkelium is a BSD licensed library that provides off-screen browser rendering via Google’s open source Chromium web browser. This library is used by Xibo Digital Signage Player python client and I already cross-compiled it using Ubuntu/Linaro  toolchain. Since I need it to run on ARMv6 for the Raspberry Pi, I have cross-compiled it again in Debian with Emdebian ARM cross-compiler. Here are the instructions I followed to build Berkelium and Chromium for ARMv6 in Debian. First, you’ll need to install some development libraries for ARM: sudo /usr/share/pdebuild-cross/xapt -a armel libnss3-dev libgconf2-dev libgnome-keyring-dev libgtk2.0-dev libgnome-keyring-dev libgtk2.0-dev libxtst-dev libpam-dev libxss-dev libdbus-glib-1-dev libnss3-dev libgconf2-dev libgnome-keyring-dev libxss-dev libdbus-glib-1-dev libnspr4-dev libglib2.0-dev libjpeg-dev libasound2-dev libbz2-dev libgcrypt-dev libspeex-dev libcups2-dev and some tools on the build machine: sudo apt-get install git-core subversion cmake doxygen gyp gperf flex bison On 64-bit build machines (required for debug build) also install g++-multi and possibly some 32-bit libraries with xapt: If you don’t, you’ll get the following error: LINK(host) out/Release/mksnapshot /usr/bin/ld: warning: …

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