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Old 08-06-2014, 01:43 AM   #1
ferite
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What should I do for not to kill my onboard Flash storage.


Hi:

I want to purchase this board. I have a couple of Linux related questions regarding this board.

* This board has a 4GB eMMC storage memory built in to install an OS. I think that a "standard" Linux installation, will kill this memory soon, because the intense use of swap partition. Is it justified this fear?. Can the mainstream distros be installed, so they run on RAM memory with out the use of swap?.

* This board has I2C port. How can I make the distro of choice to "recognize" this. It must be some kind of specific driver?. I have worked with I2C on microcontrollers, but I have not on Linux.

Thanks for your help.
 
Old 08-06-2014, 04:20 AM   #2
rokytnji
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Back when I owned my cheap asus eeepcs with low cost weak phison ssd drives.
I made sure I had enough ram first. Then formatted the ssd drives as ext2 file system with no /swap partition.

They ran for years like that. They were working fine when I sold them with Puppy linux on one.
The other was Windows XP.

All my frugal with persistence linux installs to flash drive whether sd or usb has also been ext2 file system also.
Seems the safest way to me if worried about solid state drive lifetime,

Others may have a different take on this. It is just how I roll when in a situation like yours.
Nice board by the way. Capable of 8 gig of ram?
 
Old 08-06-2014, 04:49 PM   #3
jefro
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I haven't seen a nuc since 386 days. We had many of them boot off network. You may wish to do that also.

Not sure how long the emmc card would last if you didn't do anything. I'd set up a boot to ram deal if I really needed it to stay safe. (like noted above) Usually these deals don't have any reason for saving data off but if so then you may have to make either a networked or local storage area for persistence.


Intel company has always been one of the best companies for providing linux support. I'd guess they have a kit that can bring this up and running right away. Usually some developer support can be obtained.
 
Old 08-06-2014, 05:57 PM   #4
ferite
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@rokytnji: I will take a look at Puppy. And yes, this board lets you install one RAM module up to 8GB.

@jefro:

* Is "boot to ram" the same as run from RAM Disk?.
* After a brief search I found Ubuntu supports this feature, do you have any good experience booting to RAM with some distro?. What amount of RAM does it takes?.
 
Old 08-22-2014, 04:36 PM   #5
ferite
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After searching in the web, it seems that some people simply does not create swap partition. I was wondering if somebody here have first hand experience with this. One could think that this option could be better than RAM disk, after all, both will not have swap, but a "standard" installation without swap, at least will not fill the memory with the entire OS image at boot time. Is that a correct assumption?
 
Old 08-22-2014, 09:01 PM   #6
jefro
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Sorry, yes, boot to ram is a type of ramdisk where basically the entire filesystem is copied to a ram drive. There are ways to move only some mount point to a ramdrive too.

You only need swap file or swap partition if you don't have enough ram. You test that based on your use. Top command usually is enough. Swap may be useful for sleep or hibernate. Swap actually could reside on a different location.

I've use boot to ram (and many distro's call it some other term) for decades. I've use ramdisk to speed up DOS apps and early windows apps.

Many of the live cd's have a way to boot to ram. Some use boot argument toram such as Knoppix. Generally you have a squashed filesystem that you copy to ram at boot time. I'm sure plenty of web pages tell how to make it.

Before I went too far. I'd see how long that device is supposed to last and decide if you can't outlive it. There are plenty of tricks to be used on SSD's and usb flash drives to reduce wear.


The amount of ram you need would be the amount your copy to a ram drive plus an amount for working are plus some temp area. If you have a minimal distro like slitaz, the amount of ram you might need would start at something like 150Mb. The makers of these usually use a ram test to determine the size it can create.

Last edited by jefro; 08-22-2014 at 09:04 PM.
 
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Old 08-28-2014, 07:25 PM   #7
ferite
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@jefro: I have search and most mayor distros have "boot to ram option", or at least a "Live CD version" that could be installed on a thumb drive, etc. My problem with these distros is I would like to save at least basic settings like IP address, and Time Zone, as soon as the change is made. I have tested TinyCore for example, where you make the changes, but is only when you shut down the PC that you could select an option to persist the changes (in a process that takes very long time). As I need to develop an embedded system I could not guaranty the system is going to be shut down safely always.

By the way, these are the outputs when run "top", on my NUC board:

Ubuntu (Live) 10.04 LTS

Code:
Mem:   1954292k total,   945292k used,  1009000k free,   119312k buffers
Swap:        0k total,        0k used,        0k free,   600020k cached
TinyCore:

380692k used, 1585132k free, 15244k buff, 304404 cached
 
  


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