Alchemy
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:35 pm

Sorry I haven't had a netbook either. Its a very long time since I had a cheap computer.

Why would developers have cheap computers?

lewmur
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:45 pm

Alchemy said:


Sorry I haven"t had a netbook either. Its a very long time since I had a cheap computer.

Why would developers have cheap computers?



Then you are in luck!  The Pi would be the fastest cheap computer you'd owned in a long time.  And if you don't know why developers would have cheap computers, what are you even doing in this forum?

oninoshiko
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:48 pm

Alchemy said:


Sorry I haven"t had a netbook either. Its a very long time since I had a cheap computer.

Why would developers have cheap computers?


Because they work.

I've done builds on Atoms, (and P2-300s, for that matter). I could go downstairs, and log in to the high-end machine, but if I'm on my way to bed anyway, why bother?

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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:48 pm

Grumpyoldgit said:


lewmur said:


Grumpyoldgit said:


It took me five seconds to find this on the front page.

Raspberry Pi Fedora Remix, our recommended distro, is ready for download!

Fedora was declared the recommended distro several weeks ago.

Anyone can put whatever they like on the Pi but for the purposes of putting packages together for schools and casual users there has to be some sort of standardisation.

There are several hundred Linux distros in existence but if you were trying to communicate information or an idea to people you need to be speaking from the same hymn sheet.


Sure.  And at the time, it was the ONLY distro that was available for download.  That is no longer true.  And even if that were still true, there is a BIG difference between a "recommended" distro and a "standard" distro.


I think you need to have another look round the site; Fedora is the most recent distro to be released. Debian and Arch came out a little while ago but even then it had been announced that Fedora was to be the standard distro


Fedora was the first distro with which the Foundation was involved.  And the very post you quoted said is was the "recommended" distro.  It said nothing about a "standard" distro.

Alchemy
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:50 pm

lewmur said:


be the fastest cheap computer you'd owned in a long time.  And if you don't know why developers would have cheap computers, what are you even doing in this forum?


I'm one of those Forty something programmers remembering my childhood types.

Just want to "scale" ideas. So when I write something for the community its relevant.

oninoshiko
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:50 pm

Alchemy said:


Sorry I haven"t had a netbook either. Its a very long time since I had a cheap computer.

Why would developers have cheap computers?


Because they work.

I've done builds on Atoms, (and P2-300s, for that matter). I could go downstairs, and log in to the high-end machine, but if I'm on my way to bed anyway, why bother?

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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:51 pm

It's been covered before, but Fedora is the recommended/standard distro. This is because we NEED a standardised distro for the educational release - we need people to be able to say -"We are using your distro and your stuff doesn't work", rather than "I've got this random distro I made and your stuff doesn't work". In the first case we know we have a problem. In the second case, all bets are off - could be anything.

That said, we heartedly encourage people to use whatever distro they want. Just don't expect top level tech support from the Foundation itself, on Foundation released packages. We'll try, but we cannot promise anything on other distros, the support burden is too high.
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lewmur
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 9:16 pm

JamesH said:


It's been covered before, but Fedora is the recommended/standard distro. This is because we NEED a standardised distro for the educational release - we need people to be able to say -"We are using your distro and your stuff doesn't work", rather than "I've got this random distro I made and your stuff doesn't work". In the first case we know we have a problem. In the second case, all bets are off - could be anything.

That said, we heartedly encourage people to use whatever distro they want. Just don't expect top level tech support from the Foundation itself, on Foundation released packages. We'll try, but we cannot promise anything on other distros, the support burden is too high.



I appreciate all the work the Foundation has done, but I don't think it is very realistic to think they are going to be able to furnish tech support for the hundreds of thousands of Pi's being sold.

And I'll readily grant that the UK educational system, which should, and probably will be, the support focus of the Foundation, should have an "officially supported" distro.  Or better yet, a very limited "set" of distros.  But it should still be kept in mind that encouraging the students to "widen their experience", by NOT limiting THEMSELVES to only one distro, should be the ultimate goal.

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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 9:19 pm

I think you"ve made a critically important decision in locking down to a single distro. Combine this with the locked down hardware and you"re supporting something akin to a games console as opposed to pc with all manner of hardware running all manner of patched windows versions. I have personally professionally experienced the pain of trying to keep a business critical app working sweet on 20,000 desktops across a Government Dept and platform lockdown (which is akin to what you have here) is the only way.
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lewmur
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 9:40 pm

SN said:


I think you"ve made a critically important decision in locking down to a single distro. Combine this with the locked down hardware and you"re supporting something akin to a games console as opposed to pc with all manner of hardware running all manner of patched windows versions. I have personally professionally experienced the pain of trying to keep a business critical app working sweet on 20,000 desktops across a Government Dept and platform lockdown (which is akin to what you have here) is the only way.



IMO, it was a premature decision to choose a distro this early in development.  Wasn't the purpose of the development release to get development work done prior to the educational release?  What if it turns out that over the next couple of months, Debian turns out to be a superior fit for the Pi?

And where is it written that the Foundation will be responsible keeping any set of apps "working sweetly" on every Pi?  Isn't that what you are trying to teach the students to do for themselves?

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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 9:40 pm

I would argue against the words locked down. People can run whatever distro they like, just don't expect help on Foundation supplied educational packages on non-supported distro's. I fully expect that particular distro's will have their own help - for example, I run Ubuntu on my Acer desktop. I got to the Ubuntu forums for tech help, not Acer. But I'm not locked down to using Ubuntu.

To sell in to educational markets you do need to provide some level of tech support. Fortunately, the Pi is pretty easy - if you break the install, just re image the SD card. Much easier than maintaining generic PC's. Networking and the like are a bit more difficult, but again we run standard Linux so there is lots of help available there anyway.
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SN
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:07 pm

In answer to the last two posts . . .
1. Early selection - the RPF can always jump horse before September, just as long as they keep to one horse
2. Locked Down - for support from the RPF yes. Agreed you can do what you like, and in that sense its not locked down, BUT don"t complain to the RPF if when there"s a problem they"re not interested in you or helping you, or allow you to complain on here when they take that stance - thats what I meant.
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:13 pm

lewmur said:


Grumpyoldgit said:


What is unclear to me is how much of this is down to Qemu and how much is a Fedora Mix issue. I found booting up with Debian really easy by comparison. Has anyone put an average Windows user in front of a Pi and got them to do everything from scratch, including booting up for the first time?


Why would anyone be so cruel as to put "an average Windows user" in front of anything more complicated than a chalk board?  Sure, the Pi is eventually aimed at kids with no prior computing skills.  But only in an educational environment under supervision.

That said, the Debian distro should be much easier for the novice to install than the Fedora.  The question that seems to go unanswered is whether or not the Fedora remix is going to have the hardware GPU accel activated.  IMO, that would make it worthwhile to "go the extra mile" to install it.

As to Qemu, its speed of operation should have little bearing on what the actual hardware will do.


Once we get more game developers on board, we might be able to show the average Linux user what can actually be done and inspire the kids rather than forcing them to re-write Quicksort algorithms or calculate the average age of the class. Your "average Linux user" is the danger here in terms of education AND in terms of what "speed" we can get out of the thing.

/Disgruntled "average" Windows user, somehow managing to respond.
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shirro
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:33 pm

I am not sure the password haters distinguish between requiring authentication and running as root. People should be running as an unprivileged user and escalating with sudo as required. It is best practice and should be encouraged. I am not too fussed about password protection for local access to what is effectively a bit of lab equipment, however many people will also have these on a network so there need to be sensible defaults.

X windows is the wrong interface as far as I am concerned. I started using Linux on a 486 and I was in the console (and svgalib programs) with only occasional visits to X for several years. I will be driving the Pi in text mode locally or via ssh. OpenGL is where the graphics action is and perhaps Wayland one day.

Porting any modern desktop orientated distro is not going to be optimal IMO, even the really light ones. If you treat this thing as a go cart it should really fly, but if you add leather seats, stereo, a/c and a 2 tonne body to your gocart engine you are going to get a bad experience.

If you want to learn to drive, and drive fast, a go cart is where you want to be, not an SUV, which is why this is an ideal learning device. But leave the leather seats behind and do it properly.

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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:47 pm

Shirro I like your go cart analogy

But I do like my leather seats (in my car)
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rmm200
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:00 pm

Let me post as a modified password hater.  On this device I hate being required to change password on first login, after I have gone to the trouble of defining it as I want. I hate requiring at least one digit, upper class letter, and special character - and at least 8 characters long. I hate being forced to change passwords on a regular basis.

It is simply not appropriate for this device.

Running users at a reduced privilege level is great, but they should be able to run as user bobby, pw bobby if they want. I certainly run my linux systems that way.

The entire class should know how to use sudo, and have a root password like "root" so they can find it.

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grumpyoldgit
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:18 pm

Agreed a complete PITA.

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jojopi
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:27 pm

rmm200 said:


I hate requiring at least one digit, upper class letter, and special character - and at least 8 characters long. I hate being forced to change passwords on a regular basis.


None of the official images enforce password ageing, do they?  And since it is your computer you could override any such policies anyway.

Similarly, password complexity rules are enforced only against unprivileged users.  So if you want to set a weak password on your own machine "sudo passwd $USER" will let you do that.  The fedora remix does not enforce complexity rules on first boot for the same reason.

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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:30 pm

In fact, Pentium II is an absolute beast compared to ARM11. It's a pretty advanced 3-issue out of order design (that means it can keep up to three instructions "in flight" concurrently and can reorder them, to load its 5 functional units more efficiently), has powerful SIMD instructions (MMX), and big hierarchical caches.

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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:39 pm

jojopi said:


None of the official images enforce password ageing, do they?  And since it is your computer you could override any such policies anyway.


I believe Fedora does enforce password ageing and complexity checks.

The ageing is especially annoying when there is no network, hence no correct time/day. You have to change your password twice per boot...

shirro
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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:45 pm

rmm200 said:


It is simply not appropriate for this device.


I agree. Mine will have a weak-ish password on an unprivileged account with no expiry. The user account will be in an admin sudo group. Root login will be disabled. Network access will be via ssh key to accounts in AllowedUsers with PasswordAuthentication disabled.


Running users at a reduced privilege level is great, but they should be able to run as user bobby, pw bobby if they want. I certainly run my linux systems that way.


That is about right. Somewhere between no password and something easy to type and remember. I would tend towards something easy to type and remember over bleeding obvious but that is down to personal choice. I it was a model A at home dedicated to monitoring beer brewing or controlling a model railway I wouldn't set a password at all.


The entire class should know how to use sudo, and have a root password like "root" so they can find it.


If you have sudo you can set the root password if you need one but the whole point of sudo is not to log in as root. I would disable login.

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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:51 pm

Yeah, I think this is one area where Linux betrays it's origins. Fine in a networked multi-user environment, but the default unpriveliged user dogma just isn't appropriate for e.g. my embedded number-cruncher.

"yeah, but terminal is a very powerful tool"

Powerful = dumb as a box of rocks, just like Windows' regedit. But as it's only me that's going to tweak then I shouldn't have to ask permission to do it. In response to shirro I would say that a sensible default would be "let me get it up and running and then choose the level of security as appropriate."

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Re: How slow is it?

Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:55 pm

I certainly could use a very simple password with the Fedora distro in Qemu. Something like 5 lowercase letters. It gave the standard warning about a weak password. I ignored that and just entered the password a second time and it was accepted.

Alchemy
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Re: How slow is it?

Tue Mar 13, 2012 12:13 am

RISC OS and Model A might be a better economic setup for number crunching. To have less background activity.

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jojopi
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Re: How slow is it?

Tue Mar 13, 2012 12:22 am

dom said:

I believe Fedora does enforce password ageing and complexity checks.
The ageing is especially annoying when there is no network, hence no correct time/day. You have to change your password twice per boot...


I am not seeing that:raspi$ sudo chage -l $USER
Last password change : Mar 08, 2012
Password expires : never
Password inactive : never
Account expires : never
Minimum number of days between password change : 0
Maximum number of days between password change : 99999
Number of days of warning before password expires : 7
Does not seem to cause any problem if I set the system clock decades into the past or future.

And I have verified that the settings on my account match the defaults in /etc/login.defs, and that that file matches the one in the package shadow-utils-4.1.4.2-11.fc14.armv5tel; I have not edited it.

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