Project

General

Profile

Recommended Tablets for Replicant

Added by Scott Heppler almost 8 years ago

I am looking for a replicant-capable tablet to travel with but am concerned about the extent amount of Data Mining that comes with a Gmail address. I usually buy hardware that is open and well supported by OpenBSD but this is challenging when the System on a single Chip. Which Chips, and by extension which devices, have system components that are open enough for Replicant Developers to generate clean, secure code?

On a more nuts and bolts level, I want basic web browsing, email, mp3 playback, geolocation/mapping though I can't imagine watching a movie on a 7 inch screen.


Replies (8)

RE: Recommended Tablets for Replicant - Added by Paul Kocialkowski almost 8 years ago

Currently, only the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 tablets are supported, but I'm working on adding support to Allwinner tablets, which have a free bootloader (and an active community of developers behind).

I would recommend the following devices:
  • Ainol AW1
  • ICOO ICOU Fatty 1
  • Q88
  • ZaTab (first generation)

Which are the devices I have/will get soon and for which I'll make sure there is proper Replicant support. Other Allwinner (A10/A13/A20 not anything else) should be possible to get working with some minor work in the future.

RE: Recommended Tablets for Replicant - Added by Scott Heppler almost 8 years ago

Thanks

I would not mind being a guinea pig on the AllWinner devices and have working Fedora20 (i686) and Debian Wheezy setups (? cross compile).

Using this table from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allwinner_A20
it looks like Cortex A8 (Allwinnner 20), dual core with Mali 400(MP2) graphics.

When you mention "free" bootloader do you mean a boot loader that can downloaded or rooted/opened?

I was looking for 1GB of DDR3 and at least 8GB Storage and found http://vitalasc.com/product/ST0720.html
and http://www.msi.com/product/windpad/Primo_73.html. One concern is that depending on where you look, the specs vary.

I am also not a big fan of overclocking, is is possible on the VitalASC to set the cpu back to 1.2Hz?

Addendum:

I looked at the Samsung Galaxy 2 Tablet and according to this wiki entry, it uses the Texas Instruments OMAP4430
Chipset with the PowerVR SGX540 GPU. This is an A9 compatible chip. If one can find a device with an open Bootloader, is
the PowerVR SGX540 GPU device driver another option?

I also found some Kernel configurations for AllWinner Boxchips: https://github.com/linux-sunxi/linux-sunxi

Although stripping a Kernel for an i386/x86_64 system usually doesn't add much to the performance, it may be worthwhile on a SoC.

RE: Recommended Tablets for Replicant - Added by Paul Kocialkowski over 7 years ago

When you mention "free" bootloader do you mean a boot loader that can downloaded or rooted/opened?

I mean that it's free software. It doesn't have flashing features though, but that's not needed since we can do it all from sdcard.

I am also not a big fan of overclocking, is is possible on the VitalASC to set the cpu back to 1.2Hz?

I have no idea, though I doubt it'll be running at anything more than 1Ghz with the linux-sunxi kernel. Maybe ask over there, they know better: http://www.linux-sunxi.org/

If one can find a device with an open Bootloader, is the PowerVR SGX540 GPU device driver another option?

No one is working on freeing the PowerVR, so it's unlikely we'll have free acceleration with it. Regardless, it might still be fast enough without acceleration.

RE: Recommended Tablets for Replicant - Added by Ralph G about 7 years ago

The AllWinner boards seem like a nice choice. I see them for $60 on amazon. A problem for tablets seems like it will be the wifi. I understand why replicant leaves off wifi support. But a tablet without wifi is not very useful. I think I would rather run replicant with wifi blobs than the stock software. Do you expect there to be any guidance for those who are willing to risk the wifi blobs, in terms of how to setup the tablet.
I am a C and Python developer, and I am not fond of java. But, I'll need a couple of custom apps, so I want to setup some tablet. I could get an Allwinner A20 tablet, if there is a way I could contribute now. Otherwise, I will wait for an announcement.
I have a couple of the BananaPi devices now. They use an Allwinner A20. I have been wondering how universal the binaries I can create will be. If it runs on debian on the Banana Pi, is it likely to run on the Ainol AW1?
Thanks

RE: Recommended Tablets for Replicant - Added by Allan Mwenda about 7 years ago

Thought i'd ask here since it is a similar topic. How viable would the Asus and Dell tablets running Intel processors be for Replicant?

RE: Recommended Tablets for Replicant - Added by Paul Kocialkowski about 7 years ago

I understand why replicant leaves off wifi support.

We don't leave off Wi-Fi support, it just doesn't work out of the box because we don't distribute nor encourage the use of proprietary firmwares, but it doesn't mean that the system-side software is not free and part of the system! For Allwinner devices, I plan on adding support for Wi-Fi as well, except that we are not going to distribute the proprietary firmwares!

But a tablet without wifi is not very useful. I think I would rather run replicant with wifi blobs than the stock software. Do you expect there to be any guidance for those who are willing to risk the wifi blobs, in terms of how to setup the tablet.

I will probably provide instructions for that on my personal blog or maybe on linux-sunxi. This will not be affiliated with Replicant in any way.

I am a C and Python developer, and I am not fond of java. But, I'll need a couple of custom apps, so I want to setup some tablet. I could get an Allwinner A20 tablet, if there is a way I could contribute now. Otherwise, I will wait for an announcement.

I pretty much stalled at this point, but I'm gonna get back to it in order to have something to show in time for FOSDEM. Adding support for other devices will be doable, mostly by following the linux-sunxi process and then adding Replicant support. Depending on the hardware, it may be more or less demanding (could be config files to write, could be drivers to merge or adapt, could be writing a new driver). Still, the architecture I plan on implementing will allow this.

I have a couple of the BananaPi devices now. They use an Allwinner A20. I have been wondering how universal the binaries I can create will be. If it runs on debian on the Banana Pi, is it likely to run on the Ainol AW1?

It depends if you're talking about GNU/Linux or Android/Replicant and what level we're talking about. If you're going to write a gtk+ application on debian, it will work just as well on the Ainol AW1 with debian, same goes for java Android applications. Anything that involves lower levels may not work.

Thought i'd ask here since it is a similar topic. How viable would the Asus and Dell tablets running Intel processors be for Replicant?

You may as well start a new thread and investigate those devices!

RE: Recommended Tablets for Replicant - Added by Ralph G about 7 years ago

-> It depends if you're talking about GNU/Linux or Android/Replicant and what level we're talking about. If you're going to write a gtk+ application on debian, it will work just as well on the Ainol AW1 with debian, same goes for java Android applications. Anything that involves lower levels may not work.

You suggest something here that really seems appealing, but I don't see anyone doing it. I just received my Allwinner A20 based tablet. It is an MSI Primo 73. As Scott Heppler noted, it has 1 GB of ram. If I could just run debian on it, I'd be quite happy. Android and Replicant are only interesting because they are the only options I see. I wrote an Android app for someone a few yoears back and it is such an clumsy environment, that I have not had much interest in returning. I just started looking at Kivy and it looks promising enough to do a couple of phone/tablt apps I have in mind. But, if I could just run debian on the tablet, then everything would be even better. So, pointers to running debian with xfce(or similar) on the tablet would be great. Otherwise, if I can help get replicant running, I'll do that.

RE: Recommended Tablets for Replicant - Added by Paul Kocialkowski about 7 years ago

If I could just run debian on it, I'd be quite happy.

Sure you can, just look at the linux-sunxi wiki!

    (1-8/8)