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More Ben Nanonote

Posted 07-06-2012 at 04:08 PM by drask

I'm still playing with my nanonote. I still have not successfully managed to get Debian installed on it, but I did manage to install jLime, which is supposed to provide the best initial user experience, but I found it frustrating and went back to the default OpenWRT operating system. jLime kept complaining that the filesystem had not been unmounted cleanly and running e2fsck every time I tried to start it up, which I could fix but didn't feel like I should have to. The command line was also more sparse than the OpenWRT. And ogg videos that played fine in OpenWRT had stutters and jitters under jLime. jLime did come with a copy of FreeDoom which was pretty fun, but eDuke32 runs well on OpenWRT. I'd love to get Hexen II, Alephone, Arena or Daggerfall running someday. jLime seems to use a real windows manager, which stays loaded in the background and makes for easier multitasking than OpenWRT, but takes up memory. The user experience wasn't much different since everything still ran in full-screen, and you can have several different GUI sessions running simultaneously in OpenWRT anyway. It surprises me that 32MB of SDRAM feels so cramped on the nanonote. My first Windows 95 computer came with a whopping 8MB of ram. This was the computer that I learned to write html on, so I spent a lot of time running several Netscape windows, notepad, explorer and possibly Word on a 1024x768px display.

Supposedly Debian offers a richer command line experience, so I will continue to work on that, but is reported to be frustratingly slow, so I'm not too optimistic.

Anyway, having used linux for many years, it makes me uncomfortable to run as root. I have been wishing I could create a new user with my preferred user account. I did figure out how to add the commands to create and edit user accounts.

This installs useradd, which allows you to create a new user
# opkg install shadow-useradd
You have to manually create the /home directory and then should use this like
# useradd -m drask
# passwd drask
The following install userdel and su:
# opkg install shadow-userdel
# opkg install coreutils-su
I could then test my new user account by doing
# su drask
but I couldn't ssh using the default ssh server. Seems like only root is allowed to ssh via the default ssh daemon.

I installed an openssh server:
# opkg install openssh-server
which provided the /etc/ssh/sshd_config file I am used to. I had to change the default port to 8022 since so far I have not been able to disable the default ssh service, but this does allow me to ssh in as a non-root user, and also to run X programs via ssh (the display still shows up on the nanonote screen, not the client display which is what I usually expect. I'll keep playing with that.)

So that's pretty successful. Now if I can just figure out how to kill the default ssh server....
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