So long, but not goodbye.

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So long, but not goodbye.

Postby BinaryJay » Tue Jul 23, 2013 1:06 pm

Hello all,

I have been using Archlinux ARM since pretty close to the time when it became available (I think) for the Pogoplug V2 hardware and was still called Arch Linux ARM. It has, mostly, served me faithfully with only a few period of frustration caused by updates gone wrong. Before I came to ALARM, I had never used Arch - while I am a professional software developer as it happens Microsoft's technologies are what puts the roof over my head. And while I have always had Linux in my house,I never truly had to dive as deep into it as I had to do so with ALARM due to the Pogoplug being a headless device.

That being said ALARM has been a great asset to me in two ways, both as a useful distribution for making my cheap little pogoplugs do fantastic things I wouldn't have thought possible back in those days for $50 devices and also as an amazing educational tool. Nothing forces you to learn the ins and outs of a system more than forcing you to a console that you have only a remote connection to, and seems to often require creative problem solving due to being of a less popular architecture (ARM).

I am now transitioning away from my plugs, though... I finally found suitable replacements/upgrades in a few HP t5740 thin clients that I snagged brand new for about $70 a piece. These babies have:

- Atom N280 1.66Ghz (hyperthreaded single core) CPUs
- 2GB DDR3 SODIMM (expandable, there are two slots with one free)
- 2GB Flash (replaceable, I have some 4GB CF microdrives on order I found on Ebay for $2 each)
- Built in Sound and Wifi-N
- Gigabit Ethernet
- VGA and DisplayPort (with audio passthrough) - if nothing else, at least one can edit network configuration without fear this way hehe.
- 8 USB ports
- Internal SATA port and internal PCI Express 4x slot for expansion possibilities.
- Internal mini PCI-e slot (houses wifi card by default) which supports the cheap Broadcom Crystal HD decoders (hello, xbmc...)

Power usage of these are higher than the plug, but still pretty small particularly at idle (speedstep helps) and given how much more they offer I think it's worth the extra couple dollars a year in bills.

Since Atom is obviously x86, I cannot stay with ALARM on these guys BUT I have chosen to stay with Arch and have already built up Arch on one of them with little trouble other than the broadcom ethernet controller requiring some module load order workarounds, and thus since I could not figure out how to force dhcpcd to load after said workarounds also a static IP) to work (there always has to be SOMETHING right???).

Of course, I still have my plugs and I will still use them and ALARM for some things (I see no reason to replace the one I have as my MPD server, which is it's only purpose). Just wanted to say thanks, maybe I will be back in force to the ARM side for my micro server/mini pcs in the future and I hope this distro is still around!
BinaryJay
 
Posts: 87
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2010 10:27 pm

Re: So long, but not goodbye.

Postby WarheadsSE » Tue Jul 23, 2013 1:24 pm

We certainly don't plan on going anywhere, that is for sure. Remember to Syu once in a while :)

Otherwise, welcome to the Arch way.. that should be an orderable change for systemd to force network to depend on the module load.
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Re: So long, but not goodbye.

Postby BinaryJay » Tue Jul 23, 2013 1:39 pm

Thanks, this is what was in the arch wiki about my problem:

https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/BCM57780

However as I said, dhcpcd when loaded was not able to see the interface and I had to reload it manually to get it to work after implementing the workaround using mkinitcpio.config so I just switched to a static IP (which is fine anyway, and it does work to bring the interface up at boot).

This is an old entry given no mention of systemd and the fact that rc.conf is mentioned so there is probably a better way now.
BinaryJay
 
Posts: 87
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Re: So long, but not goodbye.

Postby WarheadsSE » Tue Jul 23, 2013 2:02 pm

I would have to say, blacklisting & modprobe.d makes sense to me off hand, but I will go see what that is about.
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Re: So long, but not goodbye.

Postby WarheadsSE » Tue Jul 23, 2013 2:10 pm

https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Mo ... le_options

Try
Code: Select all
~ cat /etc/modprobe.d/no-tg3.conf
# disable autoload of tg3
blacklist tg3

~cat /etc/module-load.d/broadcom.conf
# load broadcom
broadcom
# then load tg3
tg3
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Re: So long, but not goodbye.

Postby BinaryJay » Fri Jul 26, 2013 11:50 am

Thanks, I haven't tried this solution yet but I did try installing openelec on one of these boxes and the ethernet interface comes up automagically without any tweaking with them. I may try to look into what they are doing.
BinaryJay
 
Posts: 87
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2010 10:27 pm

Re: So long, but not goodbye.

Postby WarheadsSE » Fri Jul 26, 2013 5:43 pm

It is probably a related module load order difference.
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