Subject: Re: Reliable network cards? CF cards?
To: Andy Ruhl <>
From: Todd Vierling <>
List: port-hpcmips
Date: 01/02/2005 10:43:34
On Sun, 2 Jan 2005, Andy Ruhl wrote:

> o Have a 4 or 5 gig CF card

Very expensive.  You may be better off with a 1G card; NetBSD isn't very
resource intensive in the disk aspect.

> o Have a PCMCIA based network card (wired or wireless)

This will work fine so long as the card is *not* CardBus (and supported by
NetBSD, of course).  Avoid 802.11g -- those are almost always CardBus.
802.11b is typically OK if the chipset is known by NetBSD.

> o Have a USB mouse (if it works? I see an entry for it in GENERIC I think...)

Yes, the USB port works.  USB 1.1, though not all hubs are happy with the
port for some reason.  Mice and keyboards work, and most mass storage
devices work from my testing.

> o Plug in headphones and listen to MP3s while working

This will be a little disappointing.  The headset jack is actually a
combination mono-earpiece and microphone; it is not stereo.  The wiring is a
little strange and you may need to find someone who has put up a description
of the jack wiring to make an adapter.  (I've forgotten exactly what the
plug wiring is at this point.)

And I don't know whether NetBSD supports the audio jack at all, as I've
never used it under NetBSD.

> Anyone using a USB mouse with X?

It works fine.  As does touchscreen -- I fixed the calibration constants in
the kernel before 2.0 was released to make sure it lines up relatively well.

> Also, I plan to start building some packages on my Cobalt box to sort
> of save time.

Heh.  I was going to do the same, but never got a Cobalt to do the building
after my 880 decided to go permanently screen-blank (a hard drop to the
floor did this).

One other caveat, and this one is critical:  NetBSD does NOT have the same
level of power savings as WinCE due to a current lack of ability to get the
CPU back after a "low-power" CPU sleep.  (A resume from that state winds up
in the WinCE ROM, and there isn't yet a known way to put in a NetBSD restart
hook to take over the machine again.)

You can run in "on" state about the same amount of time as WinCE without
recharging, but when the battery goes low, you must either shut down NetBSD
before suspending, or get to a charger quick.  When in "suspend" mode from
NetBSD, the battery will continue to drain at about 50% of the rate as it
does in "on" state, as the only real power savings comes from blanking the
screen (USB and CF/PCMCIA power remains on).

-- Todd Vierling <> <>