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I'm fairly new to linux and haven't really done much with it aside from playing with knopix and ubuntu. Now, I'm trying to develop an embedded device (PC104) capable of ...
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    Embedded Devices


    I'm fairly new to linux and haven't really done much with it aside from playing with knopix and ubuntu. Now, I'm trying to develop an embedded device (PC104) capable of running a free distribution of linux. I was wondering if anyone has any experience with PC104 and can suggest a linux distribution that works with it.

    And which programming language is best for developing gui applications on embedded linux? Also, would I be able to develop a C++ application that can run on different distributions of embedded linux or would I run into compatibility issues?

    Thanks,

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    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
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    Is this an x86 processor, or an ARM device? In any case, there are a number of Linux distributions for these, including Debian. In fact, I have an ARM-based pc104 board and dev kit coming this week that supports Debian (2.6 kernel) as well as others that use a 2.4 kernel. You need to go to the board manufacturer's web site to see what they support in the embedded Linux department. Which distributions can run depend a lot on the amount of memory the board provides. For a modern kernel (2.6.x) you probably need 64MB for an ARM board, and 128M for an x86 board. ARM devices are propular for embedded systems due to their smaller resource requirements and significantly lower prices. Anyway, the board manufacturer I am going with is found here: Technologic Systems PC/104 Single Board Computers and Peripherals
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
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    Thanks for your response. I haven't really picked a board yet, but it seems like ARM boards are more in my price range. I am hoping to find a combination of board, OS, and development tool that I already know works since this is a low budget project with short deadlines.
    Can I ask how much you paid for the board and the dev kit?

    Thanks again,

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    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
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    PC-104 TS-7260-64 64mb processor board - $175
    Dev Kit Kit-LCDR w/ power-supply, cables, TS-9445 console board, 2gb flash w/ debian and full linux tool chain - $150

    So, basically everything you need for under $350 USD. I also got some additional opto-22 I/O and 24v relay boards for our application, so altogether, w/ Priority Mail shipping, I paid under $500 USD. Shipping for the cpu + dev kit is about $11USD for priority mail. All in all, it seems pretty reasonable to me, especially with a fully functional/bootable Linux OS w/ 2.6 kernel and all the other stuff on a bootable SD flash card.
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

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    yeah, that sounds like a good deal.
    Actually, I was reading a relatively old article about booting linux on pc 104 that scared me a little bit, but I guess these days they ship the devices with linux pre-installed on the flash drives.

    embeddedsys.com/subpages/products/images/pdf/microsys_pc104_embed.pdf

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    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
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    Yeah. That article is almost 8 years old. A lot has changed since then.
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

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    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
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    Anyway, according to the USPS tracking system, it should be here sometime tomorrow (Monday). Hopefully I'll have had a chance to get it up and running by the end of the week. I'll post something here about my progress with it, and general feed-back on the kit, etc.
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

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    that'd be great, looking forward to it.

    Thanks,

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