1. Purchase 16gb SD card from buy.com.
2. Insert into igepv2 running a previously installed Ubuntu 9.04 system.
3. Ubuntu does not recognize the USB card. In fact, it does not recognize any USB sticks that I plug into the USB port. I can see them using dmesg but I cannot mount them as a device. The error has something to do with codepage 44xx or whatever.
4. Spend several hours searching forums for people who have this same problem. Give up and decide to use a different Linux machine - my Sheeva plug, which runs a flavor of Linux that does detect the USB stick.
5. Begin following instructions for how to get Ubuntu distribution on igep, here
. Realize that the mkcard.sh script that it uses was for a 2 gig card and didn't work on my original 2 gig card because of an error in the way SanDisk reports the size of the card. The fix for that was 2 weeks of searching on Linux forums pouring massive amounts of personal time into the troubleshooting process led to this
blog entry that led to this blog entry
that contained this comment that allowed me to finally fix the problem:
"Comment by challinan, Aug 05, 2009
As noted elsewhere, there is a typo under "Create the FAT32 partition for booting and transferring files from Windows". Type simply 51? and not the +50 as indicated. Also, for unknown reasons, after the first fdisk on a SanDisk? 2GB SD Card (about the most common card you can find) the total bytes shows up under fdisk as 1977614336 and not the full 2GB. When you do the calculation above, you end up with number of cylinders = 240, not 245. My resulting SD Card was not recognized by the X-Loader until I corrected this."
Frankly, I'm lucky that the solution was posted. With information from the previous install issue in hand, I returned to this page
, which is the clearest guide I've found for formatting a USB stick in Linux, and proceed to follow the command line instructions, including doing mathematical calculations to set up the USB stick properly.
I'm not saying that Linux doesn't work. It may work for some people, but at this point, I'm in terminal mode on an alternative machine doing the math to format a f*%king USB stick so I can boot from it. And, incredibly, the USB stick is now formatted with a boot partition and a root file system partition.
6. I'm now back off of this
page and back to the original wiki page for getting ubuntu on igep. I want to install Ubuntu 10.1 on the igep but the 10.1 instructions warn that there is a bug in the kernel. However, I'm using tripzero's kernel (don't even ask) and he encourages me to try to build it that way.
What way? Well, building the install involves downloading Ubuntu, using an emulator that can mimic the ARM architecture of the igep and build a root file system that can run on the igep. How does all of this sound so far to you Windows or Mac folks? Sound like fun? I'd rather have red hot knitting needles plunged into my eyes. But, my choices are A) quit and declare defeat; B) operate in Linux 'crazy-world' where instead of having a command you can remember like "password" they decide to call it "passwrd" and give you no hints whatsoever if you misspell it.
7. Okay, since I managed to master installing Ubuntu on the igep once before, I have a program called rootstock that helps me build a distro. Since the Sheeva and igep have limited onboard memory, you can't really build a whole distro for them using their internal memory. So, I plug in my USB external drive and I'll build the distro on it. Naturally, the rootstock installer file assumes you have enough onboard memory to build the new distro. So...I open up the installer file and comb through the hundreds of lines of stuff in it until I find the variable they use to designate the build directory. While I'm in there, I find that there is a variable for a default user with blank as username and password. This explains why the last time I built the 9.04 version that I couldn't get into the desktop when it finally booted. I change the username and password to something I can remember, the go back and change the build directory, rename the file it rootstocknew and try to run the file. Naturally, I've forgotten to terminate the modified entry I made with a quote. So I terminate it and resave the file and rerun.