Table of Contents
I bought an Alix board from PCEngines to experiment a little with it. Here are a few tips, no ready-made solutions for router or something like that only independent problem solver to run the Alix with Archlinux.
- 1x ALIX.2D13 Bundle
- 1x TP-Link TL-WN861N WLAN Mini PCI
- 2x BIGtec WLAN Adaptercable SMA
- 2x TP-Link TL-ANT2405CL WLAN antenna
This Alix had no VGA connector and no normal BIOS it's sort of the essential version. No Boot from!
There are a few documentations how to boot from stick or something link that with an help System on an a CF Card but I think the simplest way is to install the system on a CF using an other i686 PC or an virtual machine.
After you boot the CF inside your Alix you have to boot the fallback kernel because the autodetect hook is build for the machine on which you installed the system. The command
mkinicpio -p linux fix this when running your system on the alix.
changes for serial console
After installation we have to mad some adjustments to see something on the serial console.
We have to set the serial option for syslinux and as kernel parameter.
... DEFAULT arch PROMPT 0 SERIAL 0 38400 TIMEOUT 50 ... LABEL arch MENU LABEL Arch Linux LINUX ../vmlinuz-linux APPEND root=/dev/disk/by-label/root rw console=ttyS0,38400n8 INITRD ../initramfs-linux.img LABEL archfallback MENU LABEL Arch Linux Fallback LINUX ../vmlinuz-linux APPEND root=/dev/sda3 rw console=ttyS0,38400n8 INITRD ../initramfs-linux-fallback.img ...
Pacman is not able to detect the architecture of the AMD Genode processor, so we have to set it static. Find
Architecture = auto and change it.
... Architecture = i686 ...
use as WLAN AP
There is an very nice software which is well documented in the Arch Wiki, its called hostapd.
Create an Bridge Interface on the first eth Port
Description="Bridge for WLAN" Interface=br0 Connection=bridge BindsToInterfaces=(enp0s9) IP=dhcp
and configure hostapt for me it worked on the first try.
On the Alix 2D13 are three LEDs. Where you power on the Alix first all three and where the system boots the first LED is on. To control it from the running system we need an kernel modul which is not included in the Arch Kernel, the name is leds-alix.
In the Ubuntu or Debian Repos there is the source Code and the module could be compiled after an small adjustment to the code. Thanks to the arch forum i found out that I have to a the include
afterwards the module could be compiled and installed. It work perfectly.
Here some german Debian doku how to work with the control files.
I write an simple cron to set the first led to load blinking after boot 1).
# m h dom mon dow command @reboot echo heartbeat > /sys/class/leds/alix\:1/trigger
And when network is activ a activated the second led
... ExecUpPost='echo 1 > /sys/class/leds/alix:2/brightness' ...
Like the LEDs the hardware switch could be controlled via gpio. It's pin 24 2)
- activate pin 24
cd /sys/class/gpio echo 24 > export
/sys/class/gpio/GPIO24/valuewhile press the switch
Here a very simple Script to read the hardware switch
#!/bin/bash LED_FILE="/sys/class/leds/alix:1/brightness" TASTER_FILE="/sys/class/gpio/GPIO24/value" if [ -e $LED_FILE ];then if [ ! -e $TASTER_FILE ];then echo 24 > /sys/class/gpio/export fi while [ -e $TASTER_FILE ]; do if [ $(cat $TASTER_FILE) == "0" ];then echo 0 > $LED_FILE else echo 1 > $LED_FILE fi sleep 2 done if [ -e $TASTER_FILE ];then echo 24 > /sys/class/gpio/unexport fi fi
That's all for now, perhaps more later!