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Re: [nslu2-linux] Kurobox-like NAS

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  • Brian Wood
    ... Yep, that s what I have one of. Like I said it does what it is supposed to do, but is not really hackable . For the extra few $$$s I d go with a slug (and
    Message 1 of 20 , Nov 29, 2006
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      On Nov 28, 2006, at 2:43 PM, Attila Csipa wrote:

      > On Monday 27 November 2006 19:10, tzong yang wrote:
      >> I recently discovered a very affordable Kurobox-like NAS box.
      >> It costs only $50. See it in the following http link:
      >> The specs said that it has built-in Samba server. I guessed it
      >> is another small profile Linux box. But it did not say
      >> anything regarding the CPU and speed. I plan to visit their
      >> store for more details.
      >
      > I don't know about that specific model, but the similarly looking
      > low-cost
      > half usb half NAS boxes I've seen mostly used the RDC R2882 (
      > http://www.rdc.com.tw/eng/product_more.asp?pid=84 ), which is a
      > 100MHz RISC
      > cpu, not sure if they even use linux (the one I've seen had only
      > 512 megs of
      > flash and 2 megs of ram so I did not investigate further).

      Yep, that's what I have one of. Like I said it does what it is
      supposed to do, but is not really "hackable". For the extra few $$$s
      I'd go with a slug (and I have, obviously).
    • Attila Csipa
      ... As someone on irc said recently, at moment the only thing you can buy to improve compared to a slug is two slugs :)
      Message 2 of 20 , Nov 29, 2006
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        On Wednesday 29 November 2006 14:59, Brian Wood wrote:
        > Yep, that's what I have one of. Like I said it does what it is
        > supposed to do, but is not really "hackable". For the extra few $$$s
        > I'd go with a slug (and I have, obviously).

        As someone on irc said recently, at moment the only thing you can buy to
        improve compared to a slug is two slugs :)
      • Brian Wood
        ... Must be why I have 4 of them :-) They do have problems, they are slow, have no FPU, and RAM expansion is problematic. But for the price they can t be beat.
        Message 3 of 20 , Nov 29, 2006
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          On Nov 29, 2006, at 7:53 AM, Attila Csipa wrote:

          > On Wednesday 29 November 2006 14:59, Brian Wood wrote:
          >> Yep, that's what I have one of. Like I said it does what it is
          >> supposed to do, but is not really "hackable". For the extra few $$$s
          >> I'd go with a slug (and I have, obviously).
          >
          > As someone on irc said recently, at moment the only thing you can
          > buy to
          > improve compared to a slug is two slugs :)


          Must be why I have 4 of them :-)

          They do have problems, they are slow, have no FPU, and RAM expansion
          is problematic.

          But for the price they can't be beat. A full-blown Unix box for under
          $100, and a great teaching tool IMHO.

          By far the most useful thing you can get for the money.
        • Attila Csipa
          ... Of course I meant 512 *KB*, not megs...
          Message 4 of 20 , Nov 29, 2006
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            On Tuesday 28 November 2006 22:43, Attila Csipa wrote:
            > cpu, not sure if they even use linux (the one I've seen had only 512 megs
            > of flash and 2 megs of ram so I did not investigate further).

            Of course I meant 512 *KB*, not megs...
          • Penphoe
            I have one of these NAS s based off of of the RDC chipset. When it works, it only works OK . I found it to be quite slow in terms of SMB/FTP data transfers,
            Message 5 of 20 , Nov 29, 2006
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              I have one of these NAS's based off of of the RDC chipset.  When it works, it only works "OK".  I found it to be quite slow in terms of SMB/FTP data transfers, and quite often it would drop SMB connections and such.  It had to be rebooted at least every day or so.  I found that it starts to run extremely slow if there are a lot of files in a directory.  Updating my particular box's firmware did help a bit but alas, I ended up bricking the ethernet side of it when attempting to update the firmware.  It still works great as a USB drive.  I was hoping to use this as SMB file server for my xbox, and PC's, as well as a small FTP server for a security camera I have.  In doing some research, people were having problems connecting to it via xbox Media Center.  Maybe it's a good thing that I brick'd it?

              Long story short, I ended up getting a NSLU device (after finding www.nslu2-linux.org), and of course unslug'd it using my old NAS drive as a USB drive.  I haven't looked back since.

              LaterZ!
              Darren!!
            • Jason O'Rourke
              ... can ... expansion ... under ... I don t think I d buy four of them. The Kuro-HG runs $149 now and includes the ppc cpu, 4 times the memory, and a gigabit
              Message 6 of 20 , Nov 30, 2006
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                --- In nslu2-linux@yahoogroups.com, Brian Wood <beww@...> wrote:
                > > As someone on irc said recently, at moment the only thing you
                can
                > > buy to
                > > improve compared to a slug is two slugs :)
                >
                >
                > Must be why I have 4 of them :-)
                >
                > They do have problems, they are slow, have no FPU, and RAM
                expansion
                > is problematic.
                >
                > But for the price they can't be beat. A full-blown Unix box for
                under
                > $100, and a great teaching tool IMHO.
                >
                > By far the most useful thing you can get for the money.

                I don't think I'd buy four of them. The Kuro-HG runs $149 now and
                includes the ppc cpu, 4 times the memory, and a gigabit port that
                potentially adds speed (but probably not), as well as the one piece
                design that removes the need to buy the enclosure, and only requires
                a simple and single plug into the grid.

                If I want to tool around with linux, I prefer it. A simple montage
                command in imagemagick (for webcam images) runs in a second or less
                on it, runs for minutes till it fails on the 64 meg kuro, and
                doesn't go anywhere on the 32 meg slug.

                The slug, otoh, running unslung and optware, has been the perfect
                appliance. It serves up 60 gigs of music via mt-daapd, and all the
                read-occasional material (jpegs, tarballs, documents) that I want
                multiple servers to be able to reach without having dozens of
                different aged versions floating about. It was fine for video media
                to my roku, but these days a different device (kuro-64) handles that
                single role. I rebuilt it once to move from 5.5 to 6.8, but mostly
                it just sits and runs.

                The NSLU community made it what should be the vision of every one of
                the manufacturers releasing a networkable drive device.
              • Brian Wood
                ... Well I didn t exactly pay list price for the ones I have. Some Walmarts in the area were closing them out for well under $50 (some were going for $23 in
                Message 7 of 20 , Nov 30, 2006
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                  On Nov 30, 2006, at 1:20 PM, Jason O'Rourke wrote:

                  >
                  > I don't think I'd buy four of them. The Kuro-HG runs $149 now and
                  > includes the ppc cpu, 4 times the memory, and a gigabit port that
                  > potentially adds speed (but probably not), as well as the one piece
                  > design that removes the need to buy the enclosure, and only requires
                  > a simple and single plug into the grid.
                  >
                  > If I want to tool around with linux, I prefer it. A simple montage
                  > command in imagemagick (for webcam images) runs in a second or less
                  > on it, runs for minutes till it fails on the 64 meg kuro, and
                  > doesn't go anywhere on the 32 meg slug.
                  >
                  > The slug, otoh, running unslung and optware, has been the perfect
                  > appliance. It serves up 60 gigs of music via mt-daapd, and all the
                  > read-occasional material (jpegs, tarballs, documents) that I want
                  > multiple servers to be able to reach without having dozens of
                  > different aged versions floating about. It was fine for video media
                  > to my roku, but these days a different device (kuro-64) handles that
                  > single role. I rebuilt it once to move from 5.5 to 6.8, but mostly
                  > it just sits and runs.
                  >
                  > The NSLU community made it what should be the vision of every one of
                  > the manufacturers releasing a networkable drive device.


                  Well I didn't exactly pay list price for the ones I have. Some
                  Walmarts in the area were closing them out for well under $50 (some
                  were going for $23 in Omaha).

                  That plus the fact that I already had the external USB drive cases
                  made them an unbeatable bargain, and they are fast enough for what
                  I'm doing.

                  But your point is certainly valid :-)
                • Attila Csipa
                  ... Since the shipping is at least 50$ to Europe, it comes out more than twice as expensive as the NSLU2 here, unless you can suggest a good dealer on this
                  Message 8 of 20 , Nov 30, 2006
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                    On Thursday 30 November 2006 21:20, Jason O'Rourke wrote:
                    > I don't think I'd buy four of them. The Kuro-HG runs $149 now and
                    > includes the ppc cpu, 4 times the memory, and a gigabit port that

                    Since the shipping is at least 50$ to Europe, it comes out more than twice as
                    expensive as the NSLU2 here, unless you can suggest a good dealer on this
                    side of the pond :)
                  • Attila Csipa
                    ... Another option, not as an alternative, but rather as a complement to NSLU2 is the pretty overlooked GP2X. Some of you may frown on it since it is
                    Message 9 of 20 , Dec 6, 2006
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                      On Wednesday 29 November 2006 14:59, Brian Wood wrote:
                      > Yep, that's what I have one of. Like I said it does what it is
                      > supposed to do, but is not really "hackable". For the extra few $$$s
                      > I'd go with a slug (and I have, obviously).

                      Another option, not as an alternative, but rather as a complement to NSLU2 is
                      the pretty overlooked GP2X. Some of you may frown on it since it is
                      originally a portable linux gaming console, but you can get a breakout box
                      for it which gives you JTAG, 4xUSB host ports, audio/video out and regular
                      RS232, so it might be an interesting choice for a simple low-cost home
                      multimedia/mame box in combination with a NAS (like the NSLU2).

                      * Chipset: MagicEyes MMSP2 MP2520F System-on-a-Chip
                      * Dual-core CPU: 200MHz ARM920T host, 200MHz ARM940T
                      * NAND Flash ROM: 64 MB
                      * RAM: SDRAM 64 MB
                      * Operating System: Linux-based OS
                      * Storage: SD Card
                      * Connection to PC: USB 2.0 High Speed
                      * USB Host: USB 1.1
                      * Power: 2 × AA battery or via AC adapter
                      * Display: 320×240 3.5 inch, 260,000 colors TFT LCD
                      * TV output
                      * Physical size: 143.6 mm wide, 82.9 mm high, 27 mm (excl. joystick
                      approx.) / 34 mm deep
                      * Weight: 161 g (without battery)
                    • Brian Wood
                      ... I have one of those, use it only to watch videos. Where does one get the breakout box ??
                      Message 10 of 20 , Dec 6, 2006
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                        On Dec 6, 2006, at 9:14 AM, Attila Csipa wrote:

                        > On Wednesday 29 November 2006 14:59, Brian Wood wrote:
                        >> Yep, that's what I have one of. Like I said it does what it is
                        >> supposed to do, but is not really "hackable". For the extra few $$$s
                        >> I'd go with a slug (and I have, obviously).
                        >
                        > Another option, not as an alternative, but rather as a complement
                        > to NSLU2 is
                        > the pretty overlooked GP2X. Some of you may frown on it since it is
                        > originally a portable linux gaming console, but you can get a
                        > breakout box
                        > for it which gives you JTAG, 4xUSB host ports, audio/video out and
                        > regular
                        > RS232, so it might be an interesting choice for a simple low-cost home
                        > multimedia/mame box in combination with a NAS (like the NSLU2).
                        >
                        > * Chipset: MagicEyes MMSP2 MP2520F System-on-a-Chip
                        > * Dual-core CPU: 200MHz ARM920T host, 200MHz ARM940T
                        > * NAND Flash ROM: 64 MB
                        > * RAM: SDRAM 64 MB
                        > * Operating System: Linux-based OS
                        > * Storage: SD Card
                        > * Connection to PC: USB 2.0 High Speed
                        > * USB Host: USB 1.1
                        > * Power: 2 × AA battery or via AC adapter
                        > * Display: 320×240 3.5 inch, 260,000 colors TFT LCD
                        > * TV output
                        > * Physical size: 143.6 mm wide, 82.9 mm high, 27 mm (excl.
                        > joystick
                        > approx.) / 34 mm deep
                        > * Weight: 161 g (without battery)

                        I have one of those, use it only to watch videos.

                        Where does one get the breakout box ??
                      • Attila Csipa
                        ... f.e. http://gp2x.co.uk/gp2xbreakoutboard.html Without the breakout box it s a bit limited, but when you attach a keyboard, ethernet/wifi/bluetooth, it gets
                        Message 11 of 20 , Dec 6, 2006
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                          On Wednesday 06 December 2006 18:46, Brian Wood wrote:
                          > > the pretty overlooked GP2X. Some of you may frown on it since it is
                          > > originally a portable linux gaming console, but you can get a
                          > > breakout box
                          > > for it which gives you JTAG, 4xUSB host ports, audio/video out and
                          >
                          > I have one of those, use it only to watch videos.
                          > Where does one get the breakout box ??

                          f.e. http://gp2x.co.uk/gp2xbreakoutboard.html

                          Without the breakout box it's a bit limited, but when you attach a keyboard,
                          ethernet/wifi/bluetooth, it gets increasingly interesting. I wouldn't be
                          surprised if it turned out that the new Archos players use linux (they have
                          TI ARM cores), but that's a different league, both hardware and price-wise.
                        • Mark Zander
                          ... Thanks for the tip on this device! I m usually pretty up on things but I had never heard of this. What a cool idea. Given a bit more exposure and some
                          Message 12 of 20 , Dec 6, 2006
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                            Attila Csipa wrote:
                            > On Wednesday 29 November 2006 14:59, Brian Wood wrote:
                            >
                            >> Yep, that's what I have one of. Like I said it does what it is
                            >> supposed to do, but is not really "hackable". For the extra few $$$s
                            >> I'd go with a slug (and I have, obviously).
                            >>
                            >
                            > Another option, not as an alternative, but rather as a complement to NSLU2 is
                            > the pretty overlooked GP2X. Some of you may frown on it since it is
                            > originally a portable linux gaming console, but you can get a breakout box
                            > for it which gives you JTAG, 4xUSB host ports, audio/video out and regular
                            > RS232, so it might be an interesting choice for a simple low-cost home
                            > multimedia/mame box in combination with a NAS (like the NSLU2).
                            >
                            > * Chipset: MagicEyes MMSP2 MP2520F System-on-a-Chip
                            > * Dual-core CPU: 200MHz ARM920T host, 200MHz ARM940T
                            > * NAND Flash ROM: 64 MB
                            > * RAM: SDRAM 64 MB
                            > * Operating System: Linux-based OS
                            > * Storage: SD Card
                            > * Connection to PC: USB 2.0 High Speed
                            > * USB Host: USB 1.1
                            > * Power: 2 × AA battery or via AC adapter
                            > * Display: 320×240 3.5 inch, 260,000 colors TFT LCD
                            > * TV output
                            > * Physical size: 143.6 mm wide, 82.9 mm high, 27 mm (excl. joystick
                            > approx.) / 34 mm deep
                            > * Weight: 161 g (without battery)
                            >
                            Thanks for the tip on this device!
                            I'm usually pretty up on things but I had never heard of this. What a
                            cool idea.
                            Given a bit more exposure and some packaging, it could be the Ipod
                            killer that the Zune will never be.

                            I've put in on my Christmas list if anyone really loves me.

                            later.
                            Zander.
                          • Brian Wood
                            ... They are indeed great little devices, especially for the price. They are virtually unknown here in the USA though, I had to order mine from Hong Kong. Not
                            Message 13 of 20 , Dec 6, 2006
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                              On Dec 6, 2006, at 1:45 PM, Mark Zander wrote:

                              >>
                              > Thanks for the tip on this device!
                              > I'm usually pretty up on things but I had never heard of this. What a
                              > cool idea.
                              > Given a bit more exposure and some packaging, it could be the Ipod
                              > killer that the Zune will never be.
                              >
                              > I've put in on my Christmas list if anyone really loves me.

                              They are indeed great little devices, especially for the price.

                              They are virtually unknown here in the USA though, I had to order
                              mine from Hong Kong. Not as good a display as my Zaurus SL-C760 (do
                              you get the idea I'm a hardware collector?) which was also never
                              marketed in the US.

                              But they are a totally different animal from a slug. Why would I want
                              a display or a joystick for a mail server for example? Or battery
                              power for that matter ?

                              As for the DRM-riddled Zune, it will never go anywhere, and an iPod
                              will never be "killed" as long as the kids have anything to say about
                              it :-)

                              Anyway, thanks Attila for the pointer to the breakout box.
                            • Attila Csipa
                              ... Well, from a strictly pragmatic standpoint, not much (except for the 64+64 megs of memory). That s why I said it s more of a complement than a replacement
                              Message 14 of 20 , Dec 6, 2006
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                                On Wednesday 06 December 2006 23:23, Brian Wood wrote:
                                > But they are a totally different animal from a slug. Why would I want
                                > a display or a joystick for a mail server for example? Or battery
                                > power for that matter ?

                                Well, from a strictly pragmatic standpoint, not much (except for the 64+64
                                megs of memory). That's why I said it's more of a complement than a
                                replacement to the slug (as it has no serious storage of its own) to which it
                                might give full multimedial abilities. Battery power combined with no
                                mechanical storage, however, is a different story. Never underestimate a
                                server with a builtin UPS that goes on AA batteries :) That said, its much
                                closer to a multimedial PDA (and thus farther from the original intent) than
                                the NSLU2 when used for server purposes.

                                It could also be an ideal low-cost automotive/cycling/trekking linux
                                appliance, for example (or the ultimate field astrocomputer if I ever get to
                                build it, since it has a serial port for motorized mounts, the joystick for
                                rough manual control, usb host ports for DSLR+webcam, display to review the
                                images and perhaps a wifi or ethernet to relay them back - much nicer than
                                the usual notebook setup people tend to use, and at almost half the price of
                                a PDA - for fully automated/remote purposes, the NSLU2 is a good candidate
                                for this purpose, too)

                                > As for the DRM-riddled Zune, it will never go anywhere, and an iPod
                                > will never be "killed" as long as the kids have anything to say about
                                > it :-)

                                A very slim chance remains for the Zune (or it's close relative, the Toshiba
                                Gigabeat). It has a Freescale processor which does have Linux support (sure,
                                it likely has all sorts of protections, but so did the Xbox :). A pity
                                though, as the HW specs are pretty good for the price.

                                > Anyway, thanks Attila for the pointer to the breakout box.

                                Glad to be of service.
                              • Brian Wood
                                ... Hadn t thought of that, it would make a good telescope control. Or even with the proper OBDII/CAN adapter it might make a good automotive tool, sonce there
                                Message 15 of 20 , Dec 8, 2006
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                                  On Dec 6, 2006, at 4:35 PM, Attila Csipa wrote:

                                  >
                                  > It could also be an ideal low-cost automotive/cycling/trekking linux
                                  > appliance, for example (or the ultimate field astrocomputer if I
                                  > ever get to
                                  > build it, since it has a serial port for motorized mounts, the
                                  > joystick for
                                  > rough manual control, usb host ports for DSLR+webcam, display to
                                  > review the
                                  > images and perhaps a wifi or ethernet to relay them back - much
                                  > nicer than
                                  > the usual notebook setup people tend to use, and at almost half the
                                  > price of
                                  > a PDA - for fully automated/remote purposes, the NSLU2 is a good
                                  > candidate
                                  > for this purpose, too)

                                  Hadn't thought of that, it would make a good telescope control.

                                  Or even with the proper OBDII/CAN adapter it might make a good
                                  automotive tool, sonce there is some Open Source software out there
                                  that should compile for the ARM CPU. It would beat dragging a laptop
                                  out to the car.
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