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Old 08-05-2011, 09:32 AM   #241
rvs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonathan_s View Post
I've been trying to build different kernels in the hope of getting USB OTG or hostmode to work. I did manage to build and install a slightly modified version of the stock irex kernel by replacing the kernel.bin with the new zImage and rootfs.bin with a new jffs2 file in System/updates. The DR800 then went through its firmware upgrade process as normal, and booted up with the new kernel. Strangely though it didn't install the new root filesystem. Maybe I built it with the wrong arguments (?)

Anyway so far so good. Then I made some more ambitious changes to the kernel, went through the same procedure and found that it wouldn't boot. I even tried building a bleeding edge 3.0.0 kernel, with the same result. It would be good to get a bootlog from doing this to see if I can work out where in the boot process it is crashing. Modifying /etc/syslog.conf allows a syslog to be created. But logging to a file on the SD card is no good because the DR800 crashes before mounting the SD card. And logging to the internal flash memory is no good because it gets erased when I reflash. (OK slight contradiction, if I could reliably replicate the scenario where the kernel gets reflashed but the root filesystem doesn't it might just work, but I've not been able to make this happen).

So having got this far I thought I'd put the question out there whether anyone else has experimented along these lines or has any other information about the boot loader.
I haven't tried any of this, but I was planning on making a small change to the kernel in the future, so it's good to know the device can always be reflashed in case of a bad kernel.

I don't know anything about the bootloader except that it's a RedBoot loader and is stored in /dev/mtdblock0 and 2 (see /proc/mtd). I tried mounting these manually but didn't succeed.

Concerning the syslog, perhaps you could try outputting to a file in /home/root? /dev/mtdblock7 is mounted there, though I don't know if it's mounted directly at boot. This won't be overwritten on a firmware update. But be aware that this partition is only 4MB big!

Edit: scrap that last remark. /home/root is not in fstab, so probably not mounted directly on boot. Or perhaps you could add it?

Last edited by rvs; 08-05-2011 at 09:50 AM.
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Old 08-05-2011, 07:59 PM   #242
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Originally Posted by rvs View Post
I haven't tried any of this, but I was planning on making a small change to the kernel in the future, so it's good to know the device can always be reflashed in case of a bad kernel.
Yes I found that very reassuring too.

Quote:
I don't know anything about the bootloader except that it's a RedBoot loader and is stored in /dev/mtdblock0 and 2 (see /proc/mtd). I tried mounting these manually but didn't succeed.
I assume RedBoot is open source... so it might be possible to build and/or configure it to get a boot log on the screen during the boot? I'll try researching that possibility.

Quote:
Concerning the syslog, perhaps you could try outputting to a file in /home/root? /dev/mtdblock7 is mounted there, though I don't know if it's mounted directly at boot. This won't be overwritten on a firmware update. But be aware that this partition is only 4MB big!

Edit: scrap that last remark. /home/root is not in fstab, so probably not mounted directly on boot. Or perhaps you could add it?
Ah... well spotted. I did try putting syslog onto /home/root but as might be expected, nothing happened. But I will try adding /home/root into fstab as you suggest.

EDIT: I tried your suggestion but nothing was output. Seems the kernel doesn't get far enough. I think we need either to figure out how to get a boot log on the screen, or do as some hackers did on the Iliad and fund a serial port.

Last edited by jonathan_s; 08-09-2011 at 01:39 AM. Reason: More information
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Old 09-05-2012, 08:39 AM   #243
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Bump. I got myself a brand new DR800SG (several actually) and I've been testing this for a couple of days. I find it to be a real must-have for your DR800s. Congratulations on a job well done!
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Old 09-05-2012, 09:42 AM   #244
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Originally Posted by MrWarper View Post
Bump. I got myself a brand new DR800SG (several actually) and I've been testing this for a couple of days. I find it to be a real must-have for your DR800s. Congratulations on a job well done!
Thanks a lot.

I don't do any DR development anymore, even I don't use my beloved DR800 as much as before, but imo DR built the best ereaders ever, both in hardware, software and openness.

Iņigo

PS: btw, you have a lot of DR devices!!! where do you get them from?
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Old 09-05-2012, 11:50 AM   #245
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Hi Iņigo!

You're welcome, as a developer of sorts I positively know how important feedback is --
it's a shame you don't do any DR development any more though... I guess I'll have to find the time to do a few things myself (I've been delaying some stuff --getting a dev env ready to begin with-- as much as possible in the hopes that others would address them...)

As for DR devices, I got a couple from eBay, and then discovered that an US little aviation company called SolidFX will still sell new and 'for parts' units (without their Jepessen flight chart stuff) if you ask nicely. The only problem so far has been that a lot of people who could never decide that they 'really want one' changed their minds after seeing them in action -- and got theirs taking them away from me as fast as (or faster than) I got them, so the numbers are not completely accurate ; )

I even built a couple of functional DR1000Ss from 'parts' units to ensure I can work the way I like (yes, DR devices rock!) 'forever' -- hopefully by the time all of my devices wear out a new, better generation of big, open readers will be available...

Last edited by MrWarper; 09-10-2012 at 05:36 AM. Reason: wording
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Old 09-11-2012, 09:08 PM   #246
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Hi MrWarper et al.

Nice to hear people are still enthusiastic about the Irex's. I managed to revive my DR800 from the dead when I realised that the problem was the rubber pad that helps the Wacom connector on the motherboard stay connected had perished. Now it's all held together with stickytape, but works fine!

I'd still like to make it useful as a word processor that can be used in the sunlight. I got OpenOffice to run on it in a Debian chroot environment, that wasn't too hard at all. The next step, getting a USB keyboard connected, proved too much for my skills. I built dozens of experimental kernels and hardware tweaking utilities I could not make the USB port enter host mode.

Do you have any insight and/or interest in how this might be done?

Otherwise best of luck. I'm happy to help with other firmware stuff, and have a few minor suggestions for improvements.

Cheers,
Jonathan
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Old 09-12-2012, 05:16 AM   #247
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Hi,
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonathan_s View Post
...I built dozens of experimental kernels and hardware tweaking utilities I could not make the USB port enter host mode.

Do you have any insight and/or interest in how this might be done?
I'd have started with the keyboard stuff OK -- I'm interested but I have no idea how this could/should be done, sorry. I'm willing to test anything, though, and I have both DR800s and DR1000s to try things on.

Thank you for being 'still there', and cheers to you too!
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Old 09-14-2012, 05:59 AM   #248
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonathan_s View Post
Hi MrWarper et al.

Nice to hear people are still enthusiastic about the Irex's. I managed to revive my DR800 from the dead when I realised that the problem was the rubber pad that helps the Wacom connector on the motherboard stay connected had perished. Now it's all held together with stickytape, but works fine!

I'd still like to make it useful as a word processor that can be used in the sunlight. I got OpenOffice to run on it in a Debian chroot environment, that wasn't too hard at all. The next step, getting a USB keyboard connected, proved too much for my skills. I built dozens of experimental kernels and hardware tweaking utilities I could not make the USB port enter host mode.

Do you have any insight and/or interest in how this might be done?

Otherwise best of luck. I'm happy to help with other firmware stuff, and have a few minor suggestions for improvements.

Cheers,
Jonathan
Hi Jonathan,

Perhaps you may be interested in the alternative shown in next link:
http://www.ponnuki.net/2012/09/kindleberry-pi/

It's based on a Kindle 3, but I think it should be easily ported to a DR.

Iņigo
PS: please keep this thread on topic, i.e. DR800+. You can start a new thread.
That way it will be easier for the search engine and for all of use. Thanks
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Old 09-14-2012, 10:40 AM   #249
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Feature requests (of sorts)

Since Iņigo has stated he's not doing any more development for the DR, I guess this is kind of moot. However, I'll post what I'd like to see in DR800+ v5:

-Optional (registry entry?) removal of 'SysTray' icons to download content and switch Plane mode on/off.

AFAIK we can't set up MyIrex accounts any more, so we can't officially download content to the device, and 3G connectivity was based on long expired contracts and no one has ever brought it to some degree of utility anyway, so these icons are not only useless but an annoyance because I keep tapping on them by accident when reaching for the battery status or stylus ones.

Of course, removing them from the 'setup' panel as well would be a plus, (I know all you have to do is remove some shortcuts from /usr/share/ctb/settings so I'll eventually do this myself) but these are not as big an annoyance.

-NLS.
-'Open with' alternatives a la MackxPatch, so I can open annotated PDFs directly in 'import' mode with Xournal.
-Ability to rearrange (and remove) start page icons - well, in general, porting MackxPatch back to the DR800

@Iņigo, how difficult do you think this would be? - I'm asking just in case I have to do it myself...
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Old 09-15-2012, 07:53 AM   #250
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrWarper View Post
Since Iņigo has stated he's not doing any more development for the DR, I guess this is kind of moot.
I don't use it much these days. I read literature in a Kindle 4 NT (portability) and use a Nexus 7 for technical docs (fast zoom, ToC, etc).
Anyway, I already think DR800 is the best ereader ever built.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrWarper View Post
However, I'll post what I'd like to see in DR800+ v5:

-Optional (registry entry?) removal of 'SysTray' icons to download content and switch Plane mode on/off.

AFAIK we can't set up MyIrex accounts any more, so we can't officially download content to the device, and 3G connectivity was based on long expired contracts and no one has ever brought it to some degree of utility anyway, so these icons are not only useless but an annoyance because I keep tapping on them by accident when reaching for the battery status or stylus ones.

Of course, removing them from the 'setup' panel as well would be a plus, (I know all you have to do is remove some shortcuts from /usr/share/ctb/settings so I'll eventually do this myself) but these are not as big an annoyance.

-NLS.
-'Open with' alternatives a la MackxPatch, so I can open annotated PDFs directly in 'import' mode with Xournal.
-Ability to rearrange (and remove) start page icons - well, in general, porting MackxPatch back to the DR800

@Iņigo, how difficult do you think this would be? - I'm asking just in case I have to do it myself...
1. this should be easy

2. (NLS = internationalization?). Not too difficult if you have fought with gettext previously. You even can use Mackx's repo translations for many strings

3. "Open with". Some work. You have to port Mackx's code.
Anyway, as the code is already written, I can't say it would be very hard

4. "rearrange start page icons". Same as 3.

I'd like to finish "Navigator" and integrate it with DR. Many of the remaining code is already there but I'd need to move some code and clean it.
I neither have much free time nowdays... but who knows...?

Iņigo
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Old 09-15-2012, 11:50 AM   #251
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iņigo View Post
I don't use it much these days. I read literature in a Kindle 4 NT (portability) and use a Nexus 7 for technical docs (fast zoom, ToC, etc).
People who buy devices with screens smaller than 8" should burn in hell

Quote:
Anyway, I already think DR800 is the best ereader ever built.
Yeah, I wish they made a 10" version of it, but alas...

Quote:
2. (NLS = internationalization?). Not too difficult if you have fought with gettext previously.
Yup, yep.

OK, seriously: thanks for your input, you confirm my first impressions. If I get extremely bored over the next two weeks I may even get started with DR development: dust off an old HD, install a fresh Ubuntu... argh.

Quote:
I'd like to finish "Navigator" and integrate it with DR. Many of the remaining code is already there but I'd need to move some code and clean it.
I must confess CTB is good enough for me in such a limited environment, even if I already suggested somewhere that it could use some improvements. What were the (intended) advantages of Navigator over CTB? (Please feel free to reply to this in the Navigator thread and redirect me there, whatever you see fit).
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Old 09-22-2012, 06:34 PM   #252
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrWarper View Post
People who buy devices with screens smaller than 8" should burn in hell
Well, I've burnt many times already ;-)

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrWarper View Post
... If I get extremely bored over the next two weeks I may even get started with DR development: dust off an old HD, install a fresh Ubuntu... argh.
It's usually easier using a virtual machine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrWarper View Post
I must confess CTB is good enough for me in such a limited environment, even if I already suggested somewhere that it could use some improvements. What were the (intended) advantages of Navigator over CTB? (Please feel free to reply to this in the Navigator thread and redirect me there, whatever you see fit).
- faster navigation
- being a pro
- many others

Seriously, read Navigator thread and try for a couple of days.

Kind regards,
Iņigo
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Old 09-23-2012, 07:22 PM   #253
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iņigo View Post
Well, I've burnt many times already ;-)
Been there, done that? ; )

Quote:
It's usually easier using a virtual machine.
OK, one question about this. My TFT is 1280x1024, so any virtual machine I set up should run at that resolution or less. Given the DR1000 screen is already 1280x1024 and the DR800 is 1024x768, would the emulator be usable within a virtual machine? I guess a resampled screen image would OK to confirm something should/shouldn't work on the device, but...

Quote:
Seriously, read Navigator thread and try for a couple of days.
I'll see you there then.

Best regards,

Last edited by MrWarper; 10-03-2012 at 08:10 PM. Reason: spelling, wording
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Old 02-04-2013, 08:26 PM   #254
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Guys I have a problem :/

I'am using a Fedora. I installed mtd-utils package, but when i try to obtain DR1000 UDS, I have a problem:

Code:
modprobe jffs2
gives me:

Code:
FATAL: Module jffs2 not found.
I can't also load mtdram and mtdchar... Please, could somebody help me and tell what am I doing wrong?
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Old 02-05-2013, 04:15 AM   #255
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matteo_dm View Post
Guys I have a problem :/

I'am using a Fedora. I installed mtd-utils package, but when i try to obtain DR1000 UDS, I have a problem:

Code:
modprobe jffs2
gives me:

Code:
FATAL: Module jffs2 not found.
I can't also load mtdram and mtdchar... Please, could somebody help me and tell what am I doing wrong?
Hello,

I'm the author of DR800+.
I also use Fedora as my base OS.
You are right, newer versions of Fedora don't include jffs2 kernel modules; so the stated procedures won't work anymore.

The simple solution I can think of is to boot your computer using an old live Linux OS CD (2010-2011), try there, extract the file and come back to your usual desktop.
Even you can use a virtual machine (kvm, virtual box, vmware workstation, etc).

Hope it helps,
Iņigo
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