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I am thinking about buying an Archos 5 Internet Touch Tablet. There is an existing distribution of Linux available for it -- the Ångström Linux distribution, which I have never ...
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  1. #1
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    Linux on Archos 5 Internet Tablet


    I am thinking about buying an Archos 5 Internet Touch Tablet. There is an existing
    distribution of Linux available for it -- the Ångström Linux distribution, which I have never heard of before. I would prefer to work with something familiar, like OpenSuSE, or Red Hat, or Ubuntu, but I cannot afford the time and effort to make a port myself. So, does anyone know of an existing effort to port a more common version of Linux to the Archos 5 Internet Tablet?

    If not, has anyone tried the Ångström Linux port?

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    Linux Engineer MASONTX's Avatar
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    Did a quick search, and the only OS's available appear to be Android and Angstrom.

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    Linux Engineer MASONTX's Avatar
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    Apparently there is a kit to allow other versions of linux to run. Try this link ARCHOS publishes Linux distro for 5 and 7 series Internet Media Tablets - The H Open Source: News and Features

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    Quote Originally Posted by MASONTX View Post
    Apparently there is a kit to allow other versions of linux to run. . . .[/url]
    That report was regarding the Ångström Linux distribution, so it looks like you were correct before and that there is still only the two operating systems available.

    I have placed an order for the Archos 5 with 160GB HDD. If I only use Android, there is clearly little need for a hard drive, but if I try the Linux, it might be complete enough for compiling, so I would need the hard drive for that.

    The Linux build they are making available does not look like it even comes with a Web browser. I have found out that apparently, even under Android, I will have to buy (yes, pay for) a Web browser as an extra item. This is how Archos seems to want to make their money for now, by "nickel and diming" customers for stuff that I consider to be basic. On the other hand, it is hard to blame them when you consider that their prices overall are still considerably below Apple iPad/iPod prices.

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    Archos 5 IT Arrives

    I have had my Archos 5 a few days now and my impression about the availability of software was wrong. The supplied software includes a Web browser and the ThinkFree Mobile office suite, which gives it word processing, spreadsheet and presentation. There is another version of the same software which is also free in their downloads. I do not know what the difference is yet.

    Apparently, the main Apps center is available by loading another App, but so far, I there seems to be enough in the official "AppsLib" that Archos prefers. I do not have time to waste playing with apps, so what I see in the "AppsLib" will probably be all that I will download -- except maybe the "Graffiti" handwriting system which is available from the main apps center.

    As for other Linux distributions, aside from what I have mentioned, there is also a "proof of concept" port of Maemo. But then again, while Maemo is well tested and supported, it was not really my favorite alternative. I will have to think about this more. In the mean time, there will be a lot for me to do with the Archos 5 as it stands.
    Last edited by Cool01; 08-21-2010 at 04:28 AM. Reason: Corrected formatting

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    Cool01 did you find a way to install linux on the archos?Something like Ubuntu or Fedora...?

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    Quote Originally Posted by kaiseroskilo View Post
    Cool01 did you find a way to install linux on the archos?Something like Ubuntu or Fedora...?
    I was just writing a small update. The short answer is no, but there are a lot of interesting things happening. First, I will post the comment I just finished writing:

    ---
    I have had the Archos 5 for while now. According to this Forum, I posted my last message 3 weeks ago. I thought it was longer.

    I was wrong about the Browser situation for Android. Specifically, the Archos 5IT's current version is Android 1.6. It does come with a browser, and also a separate HTML renderer for files on local drives. One cannot save an HTML page onto the local drives, so I guess the assumption is that an HTML page on a local drive is supplied by the user.

    The inability to save an HTML Web page is a surprising omission. I "sort of" like the Archos 5, but I have decided not to use it for serious work due to the omissions.

    There is a lot of free software, and a lot of cheap software. But nothing fills in the holes in the capabilities yet.
    ---

    Now, the thing about Android is that it is an upper layer interface, sort of like KDE or GNOME. It sits on top of the Kernel, and uses devices fairly normally. For the Archos 5, a lot of the "glue" programming seems to have been done under or using Ubuntu. But this might not hold true for all Android devices. I would say that if someone wanted to, they could do an Ubuntu port. But remember that you are not working on a computer with a keyboard and a lot of ports. There is quirkiness to deal with. And as I said before, I am not personally that interested in doing that kind of work.

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    I was going to expand on what I wrote before, but I realized that there is an excellent article on the Android OS in Wikipaedia which includes the history, current situation, and the main programming issues:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Android_(operating_system)

    As with all Linux distribution, the sources for Android are available.

    There is a good Forum for Archos products:

    Forum.ArchosFans.com - Index page

    I should also mention that "Maemo" which has been ported in a crude "proof of concept" version (essentially barely working) has been continued in the "MeeGo" operating system along with "Moblin".

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