Trimslice Successes — and small steps for XS-1.75

I had a USB to SATA hard disk adapter, so I downloaded the trimslice precompiled FC 17 release at and copied it onto a 320 GB laptop drive. I followed the README, fetched xzcat, and executed “xzcat f17arm-latest-armhfp-trimslice-sda.img.xz /dev/sda” to copy the file across via the USB adapter to the hard disk. With some disbelief, I stuck the SATA drive in the Trimslice, (there was a nice little disk bay on the bottom of the solid aluminum casing), powered it on, and attached a serial cable. To my amazement, I was presented with a logon prompt!  I very seldom have something just work the way this did.

I downloaded “Development Tools” successfully, scp’d the olpc kernel git tree from my other machine, and proceeded to compile the kernel successfully.  I put the newly compiled kernel and modules on a USB stick, on top of a FC17 rootfs, ran dracut, adjusted olpc.fth in the /boot folder, stuck it in a XO-1.75, and booted to the point where the libertas driver module blew up.  After modprobe.d/blacklisting libertas, I got a login prompt.  I’ve been working to get a kernel that I compiled to work on the XO for two weeks. So the Trimslice turns out to be a means to compile ARM code, in addition to being a target down the road for XS software.

There are some wrinkles with the Trimslice build, of course.  A USB stick is discovered during the boot process, but subsequently, inserting a USB stick creates no entries in dmesg, or /var/log/messages. So sneakernet doesn’t work.  Fortunately, a USB ethernet dongle provides easy access.

So next, I can start recreating RPM’s for XS on the Trimslice. I have some learning to do there.


About George Hunt

Retired electrical engineer and programmer, enthusiastic about OLPC as a vehicle for gathering together volunteerism, mine and so many others', for helping education in developing countries.
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