Subject: Current status (was Reliable network cards? CF cards?)
To: Todd Vierling <>
From: Andy Ruhl <>
List: port-hpcmips
Date: 01/02/2005 21:31:00
On Sun, 2 Jan 2005 10:43:34 -0500 (EST), Todd Vierling <> wrote:
> 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.

Well, I do like my disk space especially when I plan on listening to
MP3s or watching ripped DVDs or something. $135 or so for a 4 gig card
doesn't seem too bad to me since I have other stuff I can use it with.
But then I read what you wrote down further (ugh)...

> > 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.

Got a response from another kind NetBSDer about network cards. I went
out today and casually looked for cards, and it seems like all newer
ones are cardbus... Hmm...

> > 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.)

Darn! Ugh. I saw a jack that looked like a headphone jack and assumed
it was one. My fault, but who woulda thunk that they'd put a headset
on this thing? Weird... I may try to find some sound card I can plug
in via USB? I don't know... Now this becomes a hobby rather than
something I'm going to use I think...

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

I'll try to figure this out if possible.

> > 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).

Ugh. That makes it a lot less useable. It would be nice if some kind
soul could build mips packages, but I'm not sure if it's more
complicated than that. Are we all the same endianess?

Ok, here's where I am. 

What I did was I tried to follow Michael Lucas's article at onlamp
about installing on an hpcarm machine using a CF card. The failure was
that the Mobilepro 880 doesn't seem to like anything NetBSD does with
the disklabel and format. I formatted the CF card in Windows, put on
pbsdboot.exe and the kernel and left it. I was itching to buy one of
these little USB storage devices anyway, so I found one for $24 after
rebate and bought it. It's 256 megs. That's enough to get me started.

So, from my new NetBSD/amd64 machine, I untarred base and etc, set up
the filesystem, and went. Seems to be working sorta good.

But I can hang the thing up hard anytime I try to mount or fsck the
msdos partition on the CF card. I can read the disklabel and fdisk,
but nothing more than that. Ugh.

Also, I extracted xbase, xserver and xetc. I was messing around with
the binary X and somehow hung the entire machine again. Don't know
what happened.

Maybe I need to use current?

But I can make it hang hard every time I try to mount the msdos
partition on the CF card. Don't know why. Maybe I should try to newfs

Next on the list is to find the network card I lent to a friend, and
netboot a reasonably complete system. Not sure if I'll build a current
one or try to install 2.0.

After that, if I decide this thing is useable, I'll probably grab a
decent sized drive and go.

Sorry for the rambling.