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Author Topic: Installing TC on *just about any* bare bones thin client ?  (Read 2977 times)

Offline ddastoor

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Installing TC on *just about any* bare bones thin client ?
« on: April 12, 2014, 12:13:53 PM »
Hi,
I want to open up a cheap think client (no, i don't want to buy a raspberry pi) like say the one below (for example):
newbielink:http://www.ebay.in/itm/N380-OEM-PC-Thin-Client-USB-800-Mhz-128-M-Win-CE-6-0-PC-Splitter-/111317793442?pt=IN_Desktop_PCs&hash=item19eb0ebaa2 [nonactive]

and then take out the on board SD card (i read about the TRIM for linux etc), put it into a card reader and install TC on that. After that I want to start experimenting with my file server + print servr ets.

Will the TC kernel support basic drivers for SD cards, USB controllers, Ethernet port on just about any tiny circuit board like the one in the link??? Or do I have to
do a lot of research to make sure the basic motherboard stuff's drivers all work with TC ?
Or in other words, what have you guys done special when you put up for download a special port for the Pi for instance?

Thanks,
Dinshaw

Offline bmarkus

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Re: Installing TC on *just about any* bare bones thin client ?
« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2014, 12:32:02 PM »
Quote
Or in other words, what have you guys done special when you put up for download a special port for the Pi for instance?

Key question whether you can boot your own OS or not. If it is possible, you need a kernel which supports your CPU and peripherial devices. Graphical chip hardware acceleration can be an issue, FB most likely will work. Also, sound support can be an issue. As it comes with WINDOWS CE, availability of LINUX drivers may be a problem.

128M RAM is not enough for a generic PC. It can be good for a small communications server, WIRELESS router or an audio/media server thougt. The best part is the housing.

Just my personal note, if your goal to port TC to this box buy one. If you need an ARM box to play with, take a well none, supported and open SBC instead.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2014, 01:04:21 PM by bmarkus »
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Offline curaga

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Re: Installing TC on *just about any* bare bones thin client ?
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2014, 02:28:15 AM »
That's an ARM box. TC will work on most x86 thin clients just fine, but the ARM world is a mess really, requiring custom kernels and bootloaders for each board.
The only barriers that can stop you are the ones you create yourself.

Offline ddastoor

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Re: Installing TC on *just about any* bare bones thin client ?
« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2014, 04:43:13 AM »
Thanks both, will look around on ebay more a bit.

Offline RampantPenguin

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Re: Installing TC on *just about any* bare bones thin client ?
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2014, 09:57:28 AM »
I have been buying the decommissioned Neoware CA22 on eBay for $20-30 or so. These have a PC compatable, P680 main board with x686 Via CPU running at 1 GHz, up to 1 GB of ram and up to a 1 GB Flash Drive installed as a CF-HD. PCI 32 bit slot but it either needs a right angle adapter or using Universal PCI card with profile no more than 1.3" tall. These units burn about 14-18 watts per hour, have no fan. Standard I/O ports as you'd find on a PC. Good little "appliance" platform for TC and your bevy of extensions/scripts to do what you described. After loading quite a few extensions I was still only using 150MB of the flash drive. And, of course, RAM was hardly being used. If you are interested in a site which deals with thin clients and repurposing, search for "Thin Clients Parky-Towers". He's done a lot of research and implimentation using these boxes.