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Old 03-19-2011, 05:07 PM   #1
arikfunke
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Porting VNC

Hi,

I would like to use a DR1000 to provide a sunlight-readable display updated via wifi.

Can anybody here comment on how difficult (and time-consuming) it would be port VNC to the DR1000?

I read the screen-refresh was one problem for the Iliad. Is this likely to be more difficult now or easier?

Many thanks,
Arik
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Old 03-20-2011, 04:37 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arikfunke View Post
Hi,

I would like to use a DR1000 to provide a sunlight-readable display updated via wifi.

Can anybody here comment on how difficult (and time-consuming) it would be port VNC to the DR1000?

I read the screen-refresh was one problem for the Iliad. Is this likely to be more difficult now or easier?

Many thanks,
Arik
Hi Arik,

There are some problems to solve:
- The DR1000 does not have an internal wifi-modem, so you would need an external one (or maybe there is room inside the DR, since once there was a DR1000 with wifi planned).
- The kernel is not build with that many network support, see also this thread where some people are trying to get usbnet working.
- When usbnet is working it should be possible (I guess) to connect an external ethernet to wifi module?
- Finally the VNC software needs to be ported ...

There might be other possibilities to reach your goal, but the current bottleneck seems to be getting ethernet/usbnet support on the DR1000 (it is working on the DR800).

Marcel.
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Old 04-20-2011, 05:16 AM   #3
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I've been looking at usb to wireless adapters, but I haven't found one that uses a mini-usb connector.

If anyone has found a solution to this problem, I'd be interested in knowing.

Thanks
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Old 04-20-2011, 07:12 AM   #4
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Ghm, miniusb-usb + usb-wifi adapter combination would solve the task (but will look a bit ugly).

From the other hand some time ago I've found SD card 256 Mb combined with wifi. This might be of interest for DR-1000 users. http://www.amazon.com/SanDisk-Connec.../dp/B0002J46ZO
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Old 04-20-2011, 04:11 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dima_tr View Post
Ghm, miniusb-usb + usb-wifi adapter combination would solve the task (but will look a bit ugly).
This might be an idea. It could become a bit unpractical and the danger of damaging the usb-connector is becoming quite large I think.

Btw, I forgot to ask this before: can we just assume that the DR1000 will deliver enough power via USB for the WIFI module?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dima_tr View Post
From the other hand some time ago I've found SD card 256 Mb combined with wifi. This might be of interest for DR-1000 users. http://www.amazon.com/SanDisk-Connec.../dp/B0002J46ZO
Interesting, I hadn't seen that before.
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Old 04-26-2011, 06:04 PM   #6
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I've managed creating a VNC port Working fine on my DR800S, so I expect it to behave nicely on DR1000 as well.

vnc+usbnet.zip contains VNC and some improved USBNET start/stop scripts. No rxvt, no onscreen keyboard etc. Please unpack it to your SD card so you'll have <sdcard>/Programs/....

DR1000 users please get g_ether.ko from here and put it into _usbnet folder.

If you want/need to use a VNC password to your host please create a password file and change the vnc.desktop for DR by adding
Code:
-passwd=pathToFile
. Path can be relative to Programs folder.

Important: everything works correctly in Portrate mode; there are stupid refresh jams in Landscape ... Will investigate further.


Here's the way I work with the thingy:
- connect your device via USB to host. Eject it on host.
- Start on DR from Programs folder usbnet-start.desktop. There's no visual confirmation at the moment, but everything should be fine
- on host execute sudo host-usbnet.sh (please read the script!)
- on DR execute vnc.desktop

Move the stylus around without touching the DR screen, you'll see the mouse cursor moving. If you want to move the view to the right/bottom/left/top then approach the stylus to the screen border.

To stop VNC press DR Menu button.
To stop USBNET launch usbnet-stop.desktop. Then you'll be able to use USB as usual.


The code is attached, it is RealVNC version 4.1.3. Required some minimal changes to compile it, plus in 2-3 places corrections (proper scroll bump, kick DR refreshes). As a small bonus you have RealVNC server compiled for DR, so it's possible to VNC host->device

I've been experimenting with Full Refreshes, but due to high ghosting I decided to stick to Partial Refreshes. Lower number of colors, but stable
Attached Files
File Type: zip vnc+usbnet.zip (534.8 KB, 154 views)
File Type: zip vnc-4_1_3-unixsrc-DR.zip (1.76 MB, 162 views)

Last edited by dima_tr; 04-27-2011 at 04:24 AM. Reason: typos
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Old 04-26-2011, 07:44 PM   #7
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Great work! It works on the DR1000

Some additional things I had to do to make it work on Ubuntu 10.04:

install vnc4server via apt and run vncserver on the host
go to system -> preferences -> remote desktop and select "Allow other users to view your desktop"

There's one thing that doesn't work very well yet on my DR and that's the refreshes. It seems to only refresh the mouse pointer. If I change windows it doesn't show on the DR. Did this work on your device?

Edit: On a second try it is doing refreshes correctly. This is after I set the resolution of the desktop the same as the DR1000 (1280*1024). Don't know if that had anything to do with it.

Last edited by rvs; 04-26-2011 at 07:51 PM. Reason: second try
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Old 04-27-2011, 04:20 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvs View Post
There's one thing that doesn't work very well yet on my DR and that's the refreshes. It seems to only refresh the mouse pointer. If I change windows it doesn't show on the DR. Did this work on your device?
For me this works ok, my host resolution is 1900*1200 so I have to use the "bump scroll" VNC feature to move the view around my desktop.
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Old 04-27-2011, 05:55 AM   #9
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I think the problem starts when either the horizontal or vertical resolution of the DR exceeds that of the monitor. I have a 1920 * 1200 monitor. The vertical resolution of the DR is 1280, so this exceeds my monitor. If I rotate the screen (i.e. vertical resolution becomes 1920) it works ok.
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Old 04-27-2011, 05:58 AM   #10
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Sorry for not having been back earlier and many thanks to everybody who contributed to this thread, in particular to dima_tr!

I have a few follow-on questions:
1. dima_tr: what is the battery run-time of a DR800 running vnc, given the frequent refreshes and possibly the network load? Could this be pushed in the case of a slow-changing display by only refreshing if the image sent by the vncserver is different from the one currently displayed - or is this already included in the vnc code?

2. how is the usbnet module used? To create a network between two computers linked by a USB cable or to connect a usb network card? (I know this is somewhat off-topic but I am having difficulty understanding this from the entries on the forum.

3. What is the state of wifi-enabling iRex devices? I have seen several solutions being proposed, but most of the discussion seems fairly speculative:
- using a SD card with wifi
- recovering the USB lines internally in squeezing a modified USB wifi key inside the box
- attaching a usb wifi key externally
--> Is there any method that has actually been successfully implemented?

Thanks again to everybody.
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Old 04-27-2011, 08:12 AM   #11
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1
Refreshes are only kicked when there's a change on a server. Battery runtime - have no idea, but should not be a problem since you are connected to a big computer via USB = DR is being charged


2+3
There are two different USB realizations: passive USB and active USB. Only with the latter there's some current sent to the connection, so you can use other (passive) devices as e.g. wifi cards. There's a big guess that on DR devices the USB current is disabled by design, thus DR itself is a passive device and cannot give life to other passive devices.

I've been considering using an active USB hub (with 4*AA batteries or a powerful 5V one ) which provides 0.5V to each connection. Then there's no problem in powering a standard wifi card + the whole installation is still portable. The last question is then compiling a wifi driver, but this does not look to be impossible.

Smth like here.
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Old 04-27-2011, 08:52 AM   #12
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On the question of wifi via usb this thread might be of interest.

What I got out of it is:
- it's unclear if the DR can power a device over USB
- it's unclear if it's possible to use the USB-port in host mode. I don't know exactly what the implications are of this. For instance, would we need the DR to function as a host to be able to use wifi via usb at all?
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Old 05-02-2011, 07:41 PM   #13
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Hi Dima,

Great port, congratulations!

Unfortunately I am not able to make it work all the way: I cannot enter the password. usbnet and then ssh works fine, but I do not know where the password file for vnc on macosx 10.6 is stored. (when I try to connect through Ubuntu in vmware, ssh works only when the RNDIS/ethernet gadget is connected to the mac, not directly to the linux box, so I cannot use the password that I have set up there. Any workaround ?

Also with usbnet, yours or the previous script, I have so far not been able to configure the network on both sides in such a way that one can browse the internet from inside the DR with midori. ( I tried the instructions in the old usbnet thread, but without success). Did anybody manage to do that ?

of course, being able to use wifi in one way or the other would be fun ...
cheers !
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Old 05-03-2011, 12:55 PM   #14
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On your Mac start iTerm or any other console app. Type vncpasswd. Enter the password twice, enjoy. The password is stored in your home ~/.vnc/passwd

Last edited by dima_tr; 05-03-2011 at 03:22 PM.
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Old 05-03-2011, 01:55 PM   #15
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well, the vnc server is included in the mac in a non standard way, see here for instance
http://www.dssw.co.uk/blog/2010/08/1...mac-os-x-10-6/
so that the usual command lines do not work, well, but it seems that one can install the x11 version through macports, I will try to do that and then do as you suggest, thanks!
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