Tiny Core Linux

General TC => Tiny Core Netbooks => Topic started by: PDP-8 on December 05, 2019, 04:05:15 AM

Title: TC Pure 64 on Wintel W8 Pro
Post by: PDP-8 on December 05, 2019, 04:05:15 AM
Success!  Got hold of a new rounded hockey-puck pc, the Wintel W8 Pro and am running it from usb stick with corepure64 10.1

Pretty common these pucks.  Mine is a late model with a bios date from only 3 months ago.  You know the deal - Windows 10 on the eMMC, 2gb ram, Atom Z8350 quad at 1.4g yadda yadda.

Sure enough - doesn't like to boot iso's.  So I just followed Juanitos instructions here, although I didn't make mine dual-boot:


I'll fess up to burning it all from a Debian Buster live setup - the RPD, or Raspberry-Pi-Desktop version. (NOT raspbian, but amd64 image).  Gathered up all the necessary distribution files, and had at it.

Works fine - Xvesa looks great once I installed the Tinycore minimal desktop, and is quite snappy actually, although not as good as a full-blown xorg.  I'm happy with it.

WARNING - lots of people bricking them apparently.   There is really nothing to change in Bios - do NOT, repeat do NOT change the bootable image from Windows 8 to "Android" in order to run Linux.  Unnecessary.

If you do, you'll find the box lacks a bios-reset hole.  Which means powering down,
 dismantling box (easy) removing battery, powering back up, changing everything, reattaching battery ....  Ask how I know.  All you need to do is tap ESC repeatedly upon firing up to get into the bios and changing your boot order if you like.  So don't change it to android.

Micro-SDcard - yes, it will boot from micro sd-card, although I haven't tried that with TC yet.  However there are 4 horizontal vent-slots near the top.  Which is also INconveniently near the card slot.  So if you don't pay attention, yep - you could push a micro sd-card through the vent hole into the machine. :)

I'm mostly using it as a fun Busybox shell machine, and not too worried about the usual desktop stuff like wifi, audio, 4K video and all that.  The Debian RPD desktop seems to pick it all up, so I know it will work if I wanted it to with Tinycore.

Port enumeration:  It seems that when you first fire up, it will look at what is on all the ports and quickly shut down again.  THEN, you can go ahead and power it up normally with the button. .  (Ie, don't be in too much of a hurry and think something is wrong).  If you move your usb stuff around to different ports like a bunch hanging off a hub, I've found that in *some* cases, it seems it can lose track of changes if you don't pull the 5v plug (power off normally first right!) and plug it back in, and it does it's dance looking at the ports.  Not always, but something I've noticed when hurredly swapping bootable sticks in and out.

Anyway, just wanted to point out the possibility of bricking it (temporarily) by using the Android option, and also not to put any micro sd-cards through the nearby vent hole. 

And Jaunito's instructions on burning a stick was fast and easy really.

Title: Re: TC Pure 64 on Wintel W8 Pro
Post by: PDP-8 on December 05, 2019, 04:06:40 PM
Um, so yeah you might have to work a bit harder on sound.  Wouldn't pick up with either the built in speaker/headphone jack, nor my trusty usb<>audio dongle.

Still, makes a great functional TinyCore coaster for what I use it for.  Building your own stick with Juanito's guide is fun and neat to see it come to life every time.
Title: Re: TC Pure 64 on Wintel W8 Pro
Post by: PDP-8 on December 10, 2019, 01:59:50 PM
Framebuffer xfbdev looks great and is very fast.  I keep mentioning xvesa and that's obviously wrong on this 64-bit box.  Just set your desired resolution in grub.cfg and you are all set.

Built-in console fonts are also ok - some boxes that default font is terrible, but this box seems, usable.  Of course I prefer to use the "setfont" tcz and load my own like Terminus console fonts snatched from another distro...

Sound, wifi, etc I'll get to later as those are kind of back-burner for me with TC.

I haven't tried the OTG port yet - waiting for an adapter to arrive ...

Title: Re: TC Pure 64 on Wintel W8 Pro
Post by: chinatefl on December 29, 2020, 11:14:58 PM
Success!  Got hold of a new rounded hockey-puck pc, the Wintel W8 Pro and am running it from usb stick with corepure64 10.1

----- Snip -----
Can you give me a detailed step? I try to create a U disk boot disk. But Grub2 multi cannot be downloaded. Arm platform does not have this software, and x86 virtual machine does not have a system disk. How did you do it?
Title: Re: TC Pure 64 on Wintel W8 Pro
Post by: PDP-8 on October 24, 2021, 05:14:07 PM
On this machine, things are a bit easier now.  Even if one is found in the trash and locked down by somebody mean with secure-boot enabled and locked out passwords.

I pulled mine out of the closet, and here is the way *I* did it.  Minute details lacking, but I don't think you need them.

Make a Ventoy disk.  Copy the TinyCorePure64.iso to it.

I took advantage of the micro-sd card slot and put Ventoy and TC on this as the drive to boot from.  Other than that, we're not going to write to it, and use a regular usb-drive to store our data.  Since it only comes with two usb ports, you may have to invest in a passive usb hub to hold extra stuff like the data drive.  And a 3rd party wifi dongle.  Or 3rd party audio dongle.  But for basic computing, this should suffice.

Ventoy may balk at trying to write to a micro-sd, so I fooled it by using a usb<>micro-usb dongle for the Ventoy install.  Then with power off, I placed the bootable micro-sd into the slot.  NOT the cooling slot just above it! :)

From inside the tinycorepure64 iso, locate the cde directory.  Copy that cde directory and all of it's contents to the root directory of your new usb stick to act as the data drive.  RENAME that directory that you just copied from cde to tce

TIP: It is best to do this with the power DISconnected at first.

Power on the box.  At the bios splash, hit DEL to make sure that you change the boot sequence to what now appears as a "UEFI HDD".  That's what a micro-sd card that is bootable (at least with Ventoy) is recognized as.  Save and exit the bios.

When Ventoy passes to TC's own grub boot menu, you'll most likely want to use "tcw" which indicates an internal waitusb function.

Note that here, you can also add your own specialized kernel boot parameters by using grub's "e" to edit the kernel paramater boot line.  A little prior TC-fu goes a long way here.  Example: although TC *should* automatically detect the tce directory placed in the root of your usb drive, you may want to make absolutely sure by changing the "cde" to "tce=sda".

This is about the only major drawback to using Ventoy with an iso in this manner.  There is no way to *permanantly* edit your kernel parameter boot line, so if you are doing something special, you'll have to do it every time you boot.  OR, for more advanced users, change and remaster the iso itself.

Anyway, if you just do nothing and hit tcw, it should come right up.

That's the gist of it anyway.  Ventoy's ability to handle not only very modern uefi weirdness, and even Secure-Boot if that has been locked in, is pretty cool.  I'm not absolutely sure, but I think they use Fedora's keys if you need to enroll them.

Most of these machines are probably left with the default of secure-boot already disabled anyway, but it's good to know that it can be overcome with Ventoy should that need arise.

Let your TC journey begin!
Title: Re: TC Pure 64 on Wintel W8 Pro
Post by: PDP-8 on March 16, 2022, 02:49:15 PM
Update - my love for combining TinyCorePure64 and Ventoy increases over time ..

I should have mentioned this earlier, but this combination is even easier than before now that you can instruct the latest Ventoy to navigate to an iso, rather than being forced to put the iso on the same Ventoy boot stick.

1) Create a Ventoy boot stick with the latest release.  No need to put the TC iso on it.

2) Put the TC64 iso on an ext3/4/fat32 formatted drive or partition.  Putting in root makes it faster to find with Ventoy. (use F2 to navigate to it)

3) To pick up the embedded graphical environment, simply follow the steps in the TinyCore FAQ:

Can TC boot and be used directly from an ISO file?


Very flexible.  I opted to edit my /opt/bootlocal.sh once it was proven to work.

Of course, do what you prefer.  This is probably one of the faster ways to get TC up and running in the classic demo mode to kick the tires on modern powerful cheap machines that may balk for whatever reason trying to boot TC64 directly.  Ventoy fixes that as the front-end bootloader.

Now you can get down to TC business quickly no matter WHAT machine you may encounter.  Hate to see those little mini-pc's that are 10 times more powerful in speed and ram compared to oldy-moldies get hung up if you aren't a wizard at efi partioning/formatting all afternoon. Ventoy gets you over the hump!

Title: Re: TC Pure 64 on Wintel W8 Pro
Post by: Demontager on June 29, 2022, 02:21:03 AM
Hello, i got same mini-pc wintel Pro except more ram available(4gb). Did you try to install tc to internal drive? e.g. /dev/mmcblk1p1
I have used Ventoy to load TinyCorePure64 image then tc-install.sh tool, but after successful installation BIOS does not show bootable drive therefore i cant load tc from internal hard drive. I guess i miss some UEFI instruction too.
Title: Re: TC Pure 64 on Wintel W8 Pro
Post by: PDP-8 on June 29, 2022, 10:21:17 PM
Hi - I never try to install to the internal drive - I only run from other external filesystems like usb, sdcard etc.

So in my case there are many ways to boot / run on that box with TC - the most convenient being 3rd party front end bootloaders (Ventoy, Yumi-UEFI) etc.

One thing for sure - whether you run TC or any other distro, one additional kernel parameter option you need to run manually or incorporate into your grub.cfg is:

Code: [Select]
Otherwise, you'll run into random lockups.  Full-scale options like "noacpi" are too draconian, so the acpi=noirq kernel parameter tames the lockups nicely in a much more polite manner. :)
Title: Re: TC Pure 64 on Wintel W8 Pro
Post by: Demontager on July 01, 2022, 02:22:39 AM
Yes,  both Ventoy and YUMI works for boot i tried both.
Thanks for tips with acpi. I have opened new topic regarding installing TC on Wintel, currently stuck on grub installing http://forum.tinycorelinux.net/index.php/topic,25837.msg165698.html#msg165698
Title: Re: TC Pure 64 on Wintel W8 Pro
Post by: PDP-8 on July 01, 2022, 11:17:34 PM
Cool - both of those open up options for TC.

Just know that with Ventoy, you used to have to put the iso on the same stick, but now you can just navigate to the desired iso, which can conveniently be on another filesystem.  That's how I normally run it.

Also too, note that Ventoy isn't "TC aware" like Yumi-uefi is, so that you will always land at the command prompt.

This means you have two choices - either use the "fromISOfile" option to pick up the embedded minimal fltk/flwm gui, and manually start it with startx - or just ignore the embedded minimal gui, and build up your own with a dedicated TCE directory and so forth.

Lots of options - but if a less-skilled user like myself can get Ventoy or Yumi booting on some obscure hardware, that means TC is just a step away!