sdjf
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Sun Mar 18, 2012 4:39 am

I hope this is the right subforum.

In addition to the Raspberry Pi, I know we need an SD card with the OS on it. In addition to that, a keyboard and something to serve as a monitor are also assumed in the documentation I can find. The Wiki says they are "More or less essential."

My question is whether someone can perform the initial installation boot using just one piece of external hardware that has both a keyboard and a screen (such as a PC or serial or USB enabled tablet or cellphone or PDA), or if an actual keyboard and separate external monitor are absolutely required.

I ask because I only have a PDA with serial and USB ports, an external USB keyboard and a dialup CF modem. I will have to buy an SD card with the OS already on it, and want to use the Pi from the command line because it will be more capable than my PDA.

Can the initial boot of Fedora Remix (or any other approved distro) be made via the commandline on another device, with the display appearing on that device?

Thank you,
sdjf
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nick.mccloud
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Sun Mar 18, 2012 9:41 am

The Fedora Remix will allow access over the network if no display is plugged in on first boot from another machine on the same network if you know the IP address allocated to the RPi (which you can deduce or pre-configure with your router).

However it doesn't sound like your PDA is going to be on the network. You won't be able to link the two together using the USB port. Serial is in there somewhere on the RPi GPIO port but only for startup debug. The dialup modem has possibilities if you have a router on broadband and static IP address and link the outside network to the RPi's address but that's a mess and will require a computer of some sort to set it up.

So, in short, this combo won't work AFAIK.

All is not lost. You have a USB keyboard. You're happy to get a pre-setup SD card. Presumably you have a power-supply or can get one. All that's missing that is totally essential is a display. Do you have a TV with HDMI or Composite inputs?

sdjf
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:06 am

Nope, no television, router, network or broadband. The only thing I own with a display is my PDA. The PDA can serve as slave or host on USB, does have Ethernet capability, but no Ethernet adapter/cable at this point. It is a Zaurus SL6000 from Sharp, Embedded Linux.

So, if I could set up a network, then the initial boot could be without an additional display besides what is on the PDA? What would be the minimum amount of additional hardware for that?

My original plan was to get and use the RPi just from commandline, and after I got that working, to find an external display in a few months.

But I wonder if one of the other distributions might have the capability I want, that Fedora Remix does not have?
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bbramble
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:37 am

sdjf said:


So, if I could set up a network, then the initial boot could be without an additional display besides what is on the PDA? What would be the minimum amount of additional hardware for that?


I haven't played with the Fedora Remix, but in general if you can set up or have access to a network with a DHCP server, then you should be able to boot a R-Pi (possibly using a slightly tweeked distro) and then access it over the network via SSH from another device which will give you a standard shell access.

Alternatively if you can borrow an HDMI display you can do the one-time setup and configure the Pi how you want and then access is remotely. Both methods assume a network connection (at least a cross-over ethernet cable between devices).

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nick.mccloud
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:55 am

sdjf said:


The only thing I own with a display is my PDA. The PDA can serve as slave or host on USB, does have Ethernet capability, but no Ethernet adapter/cable at this point. It is a Zaurus SL6000 from Sharp, Embedded Linux.


OK, not a run of the mill Windows CE or similar PDA then.


So, if I could set up a network, then the initial boot could be without an additional display besides what is on the PDA? What would be the minimum amount of additional hardware for that?


If you have an ethernet hub and can setup a DHCP server on the Zaurus then you can ssh in to the RPi over a mini network.


My original plan was to get and use the RPi just from commandline,


Which is fine - you don't HAVE to use a graphical desktop display - I'm sure I won't be at least half the time I'm using it.


But I wonder if one of the other distributions might have the capability I want, that Fedora Remix does not have?


This isn't a limitation of Fedora, no distro can compensate for your lack of peripherals! The RPi is setup to either use a keyboard/(mouse)/screen OR access via a network.

sdjf
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Sun Mar 18, 2012 5:08 pm

Thank you both for your replies.

I will need to use the distro as it comes, as I cannot tweak before initial boot - my PDA ROM does not support SD cards bigger than 1 Gig. And I will not be able to borrow a display, that is why I am asking these questions.

nmcc said:

> If you have an ethernet hub and can setup a DHCP server on the Zaurus then you can ssh in to the RPi over a mini network.

> This isn"t a limitation of Fedora, no distro can compensate for your lack of peripherals! The RPi is setup to either use a keyboard/(mouse)/screen OR access via a network.

Are you saying that I can perform the initial boot using Ethernet, getting access to commandline via ssh immediately? I would not have set up a password or encryption keys yet on the RPi, although I have them already on the PDA.

Do I need another piece of hardware between the Zaurus and RPi, in addition to some sort of Ethernet adapter or cable on the Zaurus that would plug in to the RPi? Is a separate Ethernet hub also required?
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nick.mccloud
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Sun Mar 18, 2012 8:29 pm

sdjf said:


> If you have an ethernet hub and can setup a DHCP server on the Zaurus then you can ssh in to the RPi over a mini network.

Are you saying that I can perform the initial boot using Ethernet, getting access to commandline via ssh immediately? I would not have set up a password or encryption keys yet on the RPi, although I have them already on the PDA.


Yes, see release notes for Fedora about startup: http://www.raspberrypi.org/archives/805


If there is no input device (keyboard/mouse) connected during boot, the system will skip these configuration steps and boot directly into character mode interface; the SSH server will be started, and you can login with the default root password of “fedoraarm”




Do I need another piece of hardware between the Zaurus and RPi, in addition to some sort of Ethernet adapter or cable on the Zaurus that would plug in to the RPi? Is a separate Ethernet hub also required?


You could try a cross over cable or a small hub or a router. You will HAVE to have a DHCP server running somewhere, either on the Zaurus or on a router.

What you are proposing to try is non-trivial - do you really not know anyone with a TV??

sdjf
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:04 pm

nmcc said:

> ...see release notes for Fedora
about startup: http://www.raspberrypi.org/archives/805
>
> If there is no input device (keyboard/mouse) connected during boot, the system will skip these configuration steps and boot directly into character mode interface; the SSH server will be started, and you can login with the default root password of "fedoraarm"

Hurray! Thank you, SSH is what I want to use. There are a number of commandline packages that I cannot run on my PDA that will be able to run on the RPi. As long as it will let me get shell access using ethernet instead of needing another external display for the initial boot, I will be a happy camper.

It does not say that specifically on that page about no separate monitor being needed, is that what booting into text mode means?

> You could try a cross over cable or a small hub or a router. You will HAVE to have a DHCP server running somewhere, either on the Zaurus or on a router.

I should get Ethernet eventually, anyhow. I have been told that to buy an ethernet switch (a smart ethernet hub) makes more sense than a cross over cable or hub. I can turn to the Zaurus PDA community for help getting a DHCP server running on the Zaurus. I know it has dhcpd which I see is a dhcp server command. I will need to create /etc/dhcpd.conf, either by hand or using the GUI Networking app. There is excellent documentation at:

http://tldp.org/HOWTO/DHCP/x369.html

> What you are proposing to try is non-trivial - do you really not know anyone with a TV??

LOL. I know people with TVs but not anyone I can borrow one from, that is not a trivial matter in this case either. But why is too OT to get into discussing here. If I can get the DHCP server running, I will learn a lot in the process and it will be good for me.

Thank you so much for your patience with my questions.
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Phil Spiegel
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Tue Mar 20, 2012 8:29 am

An alternative to 'borrowing' a tv from a friend, is to visit them, and use it there for a few minutes .... they might even decide to order a Pi for themselves .....

Your Country Location may be significant in this discussion: a TV receiver in the UK requiring a licence unless running off wholey contained battiries or temporarilly removed formt he home for a holiday (but no TV being used at the home address at the time etc etc)

A monitor doesn't.

mole125
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Tue Mar 20, 2012 8:39 am

Phil Spiegel said:


An alternative to 'borrowing' a tv from a friend, is to visit them, and use it there for a few minutes .... they might even decide to order a Pi for themselves .....

Your Country Location may be significant in this discussion: a TV receiver in the UK requiring a licence unless running off wholey contained battiries or temporarilly removed formt he home for a holiday (but no TV being used at the home address at the time etc etc)

A monitor doesn't.


Strictly in the UK a TV doesn't need a licence, the act of receiving live (or near live*) TV transmissions is what needs a license. If you buy a TV the TV Licensing authority get your address and if you haven't a license will send you agressive letters telling you that you need one and that they will take you to court if you don't get one, they can also send inspectors around and if you let them in and they see an aerial plugged into the TV  then that would be considered proof. If you don't let them in and/or don't have any aerial and have a valid alternative reason for having a tv then they wouldn't have enough evidence to convict you - though may still harass you for a while threatening to do so.

* eg watching 'live' on iPlayer or delayed due to live pause but not watching catchup on iPlayer

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grumpyoldgit
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:43 am

I can't believe people are spending so much time bending over backwards on this topic;coming up with more and more elaborate solutions. Unless an individual is living in a lighthouse in the middle of the Atlantic, surely it must be possible to get hold of a monitor, keyboard and mouse, if only for a few minutes. The whole scenario of having a PDA but no computer, do my mind, makes the whole prospect of working on a Pi faintly ridiculous. The OP seems knowledgeable in a number of areas but has no computer or access to a computer Are we sure he isn't just extracting the micturation?

mole125
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:53 am

There is a difference between access to a computer, and unrestricted access to a computer with the ability and permissions to run arbitrary programs, unplugs keyboards and mice etc without being told off. I imagine if you are living in a boarding school with strong rules about what is allowed it well may be the case the school computers are too locked down and you can't go anywhere else. Besides which if people want to help why stop them? The knowledge learned may also be useful in other situations and scenarios even if a keyboard could be available.

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grumpyoldgit
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:58 am

I'm afraid I tend to look for the simplest solution to a problem rather than the fanciful.

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Burngate
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Tue Mar 20, 2012 10:09 am

sdjf said:


... The PDA can serve as slave or host on USB, ...


Is this the answer?

bredman
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Tue Mar 20, 2012 10:55 am

nmcc said:


You could try a cross over cable or a small hub or a router.


You can use any cheap Ethernet cable to connect the RPi to another computer (such as your PDA). RPi has an auto-sensing NIC, therefore a crossover cable is not necessary.

Skygod
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Thu Mar 22, 2012 7:05 am

Grumpyoldgit said:


Are we sure he isn't just extracting the micturation?


I think you'll find that strictly speaking it should be micturition

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cnxsoft
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Fri Mar 23, 2012 2:27 pm

sdjf said:

sdjf said:
> What you are proposing to try is non-trivial - do you really not know anyone with a TV??
LOL. I know people with TVs but not anyone I can borrow one from, that is not a trivial matter in this case either. But why is too OT to get into discussing here. If I can get the DHCP server running, I will learn a lot in the process and it will be good for me.



I'm just wondering: Which hardware are you using to write in this forum ?

sdjf
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:57 pm

thank you bredman and mole125. I really do not wish to discuss the limitations of my life here, that is not what the forum is about. I am in the process now of setting my sl6000 up to be a server. Agreed, not easy to do, but a good learning experience and certainly feasible.

Bredman said:

> RPi has an auto-sensing NIC, therefore a crossover cable is not necessary.

Wow, that is nice, but what I am seeing cheap are Ethernet Patch cables, I guess that is okay from reading the following?

http://itknowledgeexchange.tec.....ch-cables/

Burngate asked if being a slave vs. host is the answer. By definition, if the Zaurus is running a server, it will be the host, at least for the initial boot.

cnxsoft asked about my current hardware. I am running an sl6000 Embedded Linux PDA from Sharp with a CF modem. This is the same unit I will be running the dhcpd server on. But still need to get the Ethernet hardware. Getting that will take some time, but I will have it long before the RPi.

sdjf
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tmzt
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:09 am

Hi. I had a SL5500 at one point and had a lot of work arounds like this and more.

If I understand this project and the Foundation, they want these devices to be used by people that may not have a TV/monitor or other things some of us may expect to be a part of everyday life.

My suggestion would be, with no additional hardware, the configure the 6000 in usb device/slave mode as an g_ether gadget, run udhcp with the usbnet up in local link mode, and serve dhcp and a boot image with ssh server configured to the rPi. Then track the lease to get the ip of the rPi. If you can PM I"ll send you my email and we can continue this discussion

Impressed with the CF/dialup setup.

We are here to learn and epand knowledge, not to criticise the adventureous hackers among us, at least I hope.

sdjf
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Re: Initial Boot Requirements

Wed Apr 18, 2012 2:29 pm

Hi tmzt,

thanks so much for your post. the forum software does not let me send PMs from Opera browser, you can PM me at oesf.org if you want.

you wrote:

> If I understand this project and the Foundation, they want these devices
> to be used by people that may not have a TV/monitor or other things
> some of us may expect to be a part of everyday life.

I actually think not, I believe the Raspberry Pi was designed to get the boards into the hands of school children who would have access to these amenities, so they would learn more about computers than just games and GUIs. Third world was a second thought, and if you read current posts, the assumption still is that those things will be available even in the less developed, poorer countries.

And if you look at Remix, you will see it does not even include any text browsers, an absolute must for anyone who cannot afford high speed connections. And I would think something important for children to learn about, that you can go onto the web without fancy GUI browsers and applications.

About running udhcp, all I know is that what I have on board for sl6000 software requires an ethernet gadget to do ethernet (I have already tested this) and, according to replies by other forum members, the Raspberry Pi will only be listening on the Ethernet port for initial booting. Rather than mess around rewriting the initial boot scripts, I think I am better off just getting a USB to Ethernet adapter.

> Impressed with the CF/dialup setup.

Gosh, my Socket 56K CF Modem was plug and play, learned about it from other Zaurus owners! We can take Zaurus specific issues to the Zaurus forums, what is important to me about this thread is I learned I can do the initial boot via a commandline only interface from my zaurus. Looking at Remix startup scripts, it looks for a keyboard, and if it does not find one, then goes into command line mode.

I am thinking I may do Arch Linux instead of another distribution as that is smaller, and question whether all distributions will be doing the same thing at initial boot, only listening via Ethernet if there is no keyboard/monitor combination plugged in, but I have not been able to see the other images to confirm this. Bottom line is I will install the smallest system I can so I can download it via dialup instead of having to wait to spend money on a preloaded card.

thanks,
sdjf
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