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Mikhail Liebenstein

Sheeva Plug Pcs (Arm)

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Couldn't find the old thread, but about 18 months ago I mentioned having bought 2 Sheeva Plug PCs from Global Scale Technologies for about £60 each. These are low power ARM systems that are the size of a large wall plug and which use about 5W of power.

At the the time I got Ubuntu up on them, accessing the ICEWM desktop via VNC, but frankly it wasn't very good. Anyway, having put them in a draw for about year, I dug them out again having picked up on the Windows on ARM story. I found out where Linux had progressed to, and it transpired that Ubuntu support had died, but that Debian was still going strong. So I updated the Plug boot manager (over USB-Serial) and then carried out the steps for the automated Debian install.

The result with Debian now is pretty stunning, I can have a 640x480 desktop using VNC and all the apps are completely usable and perform well. I have also successfully accessed the the system over VNC from a cheap Android tablet.

Anyway, my conclusion is not bad for £60 Linux computer.

I didn't buy the follow on products, the Dream Plug and the Guru plug as they were basically similar, but with more RAM and Ports. However, I have now spotted the latest D2 Plug PC System, which is more expensive (more like £150), but decided to order on a whim as it has HDMI/VGA. This will be quite interesting to watch, as I am Wondering if Windows on ARM will get onto these devices? My take on these are they are very small, offer 90% of business users the performance they need and from an environmental perspective they'll save 100W or more in power compared with a fairly low spec desktop.

Anyone else looked at these types of devices?

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I've been looking at getting something like this for a while to run certain weirdo networking applications at home - would like something that ran silently (without fan) and offering a gigabit ethernet connection. Of course I have an old PC that I could slap a linux distro onto, but I don't actually want to run a >100W minitower with four fans in my living space 24/7.

Regarding Windows on Arm, I suspect the obscene memory requirements of the OS and contemporary Windows applications will prevent it being a worthwhile exercise - most of these small systems come with a relatively small amount of soldered-in memory IIRC.

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Not this particular one but I do have a similar need for a small lightweight box to run a hardware firewall and possibly apache on but I want to find a dual nic version so everything passes through the box.

MS have their equivalent called XP Embeded which works very well in terms of stability

http://en.wikipedia....indows_Embedded

They have USB ports, so the external network could be a wifi or 3G USB modem.

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Anyone else looked at these types of devices?

Not me.

I look forward to the time I can source viable ARM-powered desktop and laptop boxes. That of course implies a comparable spec to Intel equivalents in terms of memory and screen size. Hoping the windows announcement helps with persuading the manufacturers.

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  • 276 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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