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No video at first, Pi2 and Pi3

July 04, 2017 — BarryK
Testing my new Pyro build on the Pi, currently at version 0.3.2, X fails to start and it stays at the commandline. Then, I type "xwin" and X starts.

So, what's the problem? I found from /var/log/Xorg.0.log, that '/dev/dri/card0' is missing. Or rather it takes awhile to appear.
I put a wait-loop at the end of /etc/rc.d/rc.sysinit, and found that it takes 4 seconds for /dev/dri/card0 to appear!!!!

I discovered why, not the delay, but why we have this new issue. Pyro is compiled in OpenEmbedded with support for VC4 video acceleration. Read about it here:

In 'config.txt':
# Enable VC4 Graphics

So, looks like I need to put in a permanent wait-loop somewhere, before starting X.


oe-qky-src on github

June 24, 2017 — BarryK
'oe-qky-src' is my custom layer for OpenEmbedded, to compile from source all the packages required for a typical Quirky, Puppy, or other Puppy-derivative.

Furthermore, it is now on github:

There is a nice "readme".

If you look in quirky/meta-quirky/recipes-quirky, there are about 140 recipes, packages that I have imported to OE.
The reason that I had to do all this work, is partly because OE targets embedded systems rather than a generic Linux distribution. Also partly because Puppy and derivatives are different from other Linuxes, with a different selection of packages, and many unique to Puppy.

You will also see folder 'downloads-oe'. This has snapshot tarballs of OpenEmbedded, taken just when the Pyro release was announced. I have provided the snapshots so that anyone building oe-quirky will get the exact same result as me.

To help me manage the github site, I have brought back SmartGit. This is a very nice GUI git manager tool, that I experimented with about a year ago:

...seem to recall, forum member 'gcmartin' put those instructions together into a single file.

Here is my original blog post about SmartGit, April 2016:

I have got SmartGit installed on my mid-tower desktop PC, as well as the Adobe JRE version 8u131.

I did briefly look at some others, for example Gitkraken, Git-tool and GitAhead, but each one had problems.
SmartGit is very sophisticated, and above all "just works". It is free for non-commercial use.

If anyone downloads 'oe-qky-src' and does a build, they will have binary packages, but then what? They will need woofQ to build a distro. Currently I am only providing woofQ as tarballs, and will upload the latest soon. However, maybe should put that on github also (?).
The woof-CE guys could also import the packages from oe-qky-src, they will need my script '0pre-oe', that will be in the next upload of woofQ.

SmartGit website:


OE build underway

June 22, 2017 — BarryK
As reported yesterday, I got through the long list of packages to be imported into OpenEmbedded:

To round it off, I also imported lots of xf86-video-* (Xorg video drivers) packages. However, several are cross-compiler unfriendly -- those are all exhibiting the same problem in the configure script, so I could probably figure out a fix.
For now though, will probably compile them in the target system and create PETs.

This evening have commenced the x86_64 target build, and am timing it. The previous build took about 9.5 hours.
This time there are many more packages, however that does not necessarily mean the build will take longer, as previously the last couple of hours was just libreoffice compiling, when all others had finished -- with a multicore CPU, those extra cores can be kept busy if there are more packages to compile.

Tags: oe

Netpbm compiled in OpenEmbedded

June 17, 2017 — BarryK
Ha ha, this needs an announcement on its own, as it took me all day.


The utilities are used in Puppy and derivatives, performing vital core functions.
I am still using version 10.34, as later versions had a bug with merging of overlaid images, or so I recall -- that is going back a few years, and perhaps the latest version has fixed whatever that bug was -- anyway, I am staying with the version that I know works.

There is a very old recipe for OE, for "classic OE" and netpbm 10.28. It did have some good stuff in it, that I was able to use, so would like to acknowledge that effort:

That recipe was just the starting point, and there were major challenges, but kept going and finally it compiled -- had a late evening meal!


More imported, getting there

June 14, 2017 — BarryK
I have been reporting on the ongoing effort to import source packages into OpenEmbedded:

This morning, imported these:

There's a dejavu thing going on here, as I went through this exercise later, 2014, for T2, for example see this blog post:

I see 'gwhere' listed back then. failed this time, put it in the too-hard basket for now. Some packages are inherently cross-compiler-unfriendly. Ditto for 'inkscapelite'.

T2 is different, it has a non-cross-compile mode (if host and target archs are the same), then able to chroot into the target rootfs. This enables gwhere and inkscapelite to compile.


More packages imported to OE

June 12, 2017 — BarryK
I posted yesterday about the effort to import the rest of the Puppy/Quirky packages into OpenEmbedded:

Today I have imported this lot:

Hmm, I thought that there were about a dozen still to do, but the list has grown, now another 22 waiting to be imported.


Evince imported to OE

June 10, 2017 — BarryK
Evince is a nice PDF viewer. OpenEmbedded does have it, however, it is for gtk3, whereas my build is gtk2 only.

So, I imported the last version of Evince that supports gtk2, 2.32.0, with patches that "bring it up to date". This is the same Evince that I have been using in Quirky for awhile.

Source and patches are here:

I timed myself this time, it took one hour and five minutes to import Evince. Some of them take longer. I am only doing a few per day, so it is going to take awhile.

It is good that I am still able to build a complete distro with gtk2-based apps. Major projects such as seamonkey and libreoffice continue to support gtk2. There are a few "lesser projects" that have abandoned gtk2, such as evince and osmo, however, I am happy with older versions with patches applied.

I think that they made a mistake abandoning support for gtk2!
Mostly because it is a stable API, though I suspect sometimes developers do a bit more to it than they should -- it should just be maintenance patches. Compatible theming between gtk2 and qt is another big factor for me.

There is some interesting reading on this topic, gtk2 versus gtk3:
And about Audacious returning to gtk2:


xdg-puppy imported to OE

June 10, 2017 — BarryK
Took a few hours, have imported 'xdg-puppy' into OpenEmbedded. It also required 'gnome-menus'.

I imported xdg-puppy into T2 a couple of years ago:

OE is a more difficult situation than T2, the makefiles do not work, had to setup $CC, $CFLAGS and $LDFLAGS especially.

xdg-puppy source latest now version 0.7.8:

Still using an old version of gnome-menus, as later versions were found to not follow the XDG specification for inline menus. Version 2.14.3:

A OE tarball with latest customization layer is expected to be uploaded soon.