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Having trouble installing a piece of hardware? Want to know if that peripheral is compatible with Linux?


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Old 10-30-2007, 08:35 AM   #1
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Registered: Apr 2006
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Smile Epson Rip Station 5000 - Linux Compatible?

Hi there, I was wondering if some of you Linux veterans could help me. I've just dug out an old Epson Rip Station 5000 from the 'things we've acquired' room at work, and I'd like to use it (if possible) as a way of making my knowledge of Linux a bit more hardcore.

Now, the item's specs are listed here:

It seems to me like the hardware is workable for running some kind of Linux, I'd just like to know how I'd start to go about getting it on there.

Problem one, it has no video out. I've heard that it's quite easy to interface with these things via parallel/ethernet, but is it actually possible to install and administer to a Linux installation using such methods?

(Not so much of a)Problem two, the screen that's on front of it - how likely is it that I could get a basic display on there?

I am aware that this is ultimately, a pretty useless exercise. However, that is what it is - an exercise. I'd like to get the experience of Linux in ridiculous places so that I can better understand the more fundamental workings of it.

Any help whatsoever would be appreciated.

Regards, Matt Stevenson.
Old 10-31-2007, 06:32 AM   #2
Registered: Jul 2006
Location: Maryland, USA
Distribution: Fedora and others
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Sounds like fun!

The spec sheet said it has an R4700 processor. That's MIPS. There are links to several MIPS Linux distributions on the Linux MIPS distributions page.

You'll have to figure out if the architecture is big-endian or little-endian. Apparently MIPS can be either.

But one thing I didn't see on the sheet was a CD, floppy or USB. How can you boot it to any alternate media to start an installation? That may be the biggest hurtle. If this machine can be configured to boot over the network, that would be an avenue. I have no idea if it's possible.

You might also check to see if it has the full complement of 64MB memory installed. If not, you might want to check on price and availability of memory.

BTW, besides Linux, the NetBSD ports page lists a number of MIPS machines that NetBSD runs on. Both big- and little-endian machines are well represented. I didn't see the RIP station, but it probably runs one of those.


epson, printserver

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