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So i'm fairly linux noob.

Fallen in love with Xubuntu on my laptop, so i'm learning, but not a lot....

 

I have a project going on right now. I'll explain it, just for laughs, but the questions should hopefully be able to be addressed by any linux pro.

 

I am trying to make a bootable USB device (hdd or USB) for an arcade machine. (has bootable USB ports on front).

Its a dance game called ITG2, and I wish to run OpenITG on my own OS. Yes I know the arcade manager, all is above board :)

What I need to happen, is the ability to boot this stick (or usb-hdd), straight into an arcade monitor refresh rate.

 

For those who dont know:

Arcade monitors are 15hz.

BIOS is 30hz.

Windows OS minimum is 30hz.

Standard computer is 60hz.

 

Excuse me if I get any terms wrong....

I need GRUB or whatever bootloader to be at 30hz, so the hardware can 'split the signal' and keep the CRT safe.

What I'd ideally like, is a 2 second timeout bootloader, which defaults to 640x480@15hz boot

With a 2nd option to launch the exact same OS, but at 1024x768@60hz (for maintenenace and inital config on a PC monitor).

 

Not knowing what GPU specifically is in each arcade machine:

- I'd like to add a generic AMD and a generic NVIDIA, 3D accelerated driver. I only need basic acceleration; and the program can be set to use OpenGL only.

- I'd also like to add a few additional audio drivers for common chipsets, but I think the default 'generic' in Linux is pretty universal these days? so may not be needed.

 

 

I'd like to use Lubuntu as the core of this, because it still has a noob friendly shell, but is probably the lightest debian based OS I know of. (yes?)\

 

 

So my vision is;

-boot from USB

-pause at a garbled (but safe) 30hz bootloader.

-Timeout in 2 seconds to load a 15hz arcade friendly OS

-Autorun openITG executable

 

It also would need any boot flags like windows has, so that unexpected power-offs or drive-pulls are going to do little to no damage.

 

 

possible?

Edited by Master_Scythe

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either puppy (lubuntu based) or netboot (a super light official ubuntu distro) would be lightest.

If you need help, as on the #ubuntu irc channel, someone will help.

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puppy is lubuntu based? cool! I used to use that on Business Card CDs

Im just worried about going TOO light, because I know the game, being very multimedia driven, has quite the list of dependancies.

I was just going to go Lubuntu and disable services like networking etc. as i see fit. Getting a working base image is important to begin with.

 

While on the topic, am I right in assuming to remove the bulk of an app, I can just delete the folder? So, say I dont want the built in games, can I just delete them?

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puppy is lubuntu based? cool! I used to use that on Business Card CDs

Im just worried about going TOO light, because I know the game, being very multimedia driven, has quite the list of dependancies.

I was just going to go Lubuntu and disable services like networking etc. as i see fit. Getting a working base image is important to begin with.

 

While on the topic, am I right in assuming to remove the bulk of an app, I can just delete the folder? So, say I dont want the built in games, can I just delete them?

i think puppy is lubuntu based, maybe just ubuntu with openbox (lxde is a skin of openbox).

netboot would be ideal for you. it's a very basic, cli ubuntu install. just install the apps you want.

 

to uninstall stuff, use apt-get, synaptic or a software-centre

 

EDIT- when your finished, do you mind if i put this on my blog(an as a result, planet ubuntu)?

Edited by noskcaj

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to start with, just a 'how to' on editing the bootloader, with timeout for strict screen resolution is the first step.

 

 

OK, so far what i've learnt, is that once VESAFB loads, there is no change to refresh rate possible. So its not going to be a scriptable command.

HOWEVER.

It might be possible to use GRUB to pass the command before the kernel boots. So i'm trying to find someone who knows about GRUB.

 

THis make sense to antyone?

 

Anyway to have a dual boot option like i'd like?

 

To get the monitor working on a ddr machine, you'll need to get your video card to output 15 khz. xfree86 is old, so you'll need to be editing xorg instead. After following this guide (which I realize I still need to complete, and do still plan on doing such), you'll want to run the command (in terminal) "gtf 640 240 15". This should produce a modeline for you. After copying the modeline, run the command "cd /etc/X11/" followed by "gedit xorg.conf". Add the newly created modeline to the monitor section in your X11. Although I haven't tried this, I think that should fix everything (if somebody notices something I missed, please chime in).

Edited by Master_Scythe

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OK, so i'm going to keep replying to myself as a way to keep track of my research.

 

So far, I found someone else using ubuntu who uses an arcade monitor, and this is his Xorg.conf

 

Section "Files" 
   FontPath   "/usr/lib/X11/fonts/misc" 
EndSection 

Section "Module" 
   Load   "glx" 
   Load   "int10" 
EndSection 

Section "ServerFlags" 
   Option "DontZap" "false" 
   Option "DontZoom" "true" 
   Option "DontVTSwitch" "true" 
EndSection 

Section "InputDevice" 
   Identifier   "Generic Keyboard" 
   Driver	  "kbd" 
EndSection 

Section "InputDevice" 
   Identifier   "Configured Mouse" 
   Driver	  "void" 
   Option	  "CorePointer" 
EndSection 

Section "Device" 
   Identifier   "Generic Video Card" 
   Driver	  "nvidia" 
   Option	  "NoLogo" 
   Option	  "UseEDID" "FALSE" 
EndSection 

Section "Monitor" 
   Option	  "ConnectedMonitor" "CRT" 
   Identifier   "Generic Monitor" 

   VertRefresh   60 
   HorizSync   15.75	
   Option "UseEDID"   "FALSE" 

   Modeline "640x480" 12.324 640 648 706 784 480 483 489 524 interlace -Hsync -Vsync 

EndSection 

Section "Screen" 
   Identifier   "Default Screen" 
   Device	  "Generic Video Card" 
   Monitor	  "Generic Monitor" 
   DefaultDepth   24 
   SubSection "Display" 
	  Depth	  24 
	  Modes	  "640x480" 
   EndSubSection 
EndSection 

Section "ServerLayout" 
   Identifier   "Default Layout" 
   Screen	  "Default Screen" 
   InputDevice   "Generic Keyboard" 
   InputDevice   "Configured Mouse" 
EndSection

My next idea, is to see if I can leave that as the only entry, and have a GRUB boot option to force default VGA settings for that boot (like windows safe mode, or /vga switch). That would be a perfect workaround.

 

Fingers crossed im onto something.....

 

 

 

EDIT: also found this....

 

dubbed the "Boxor" which runs a heavily modified version of the Debian GNU/Linux distribution. The computer contains a standard IDE hard disk (usually 40gb or 80gb in size), single-core 32-bit processor (Usually AMD Athlon or Intel Celeron), 128mb nVidia GeForce FX 5200 graphics card, 256MB or 512MB of DDR RAM, a Gigabyte Technology GA-8IPE1000 Pro2 motherboard, and a USB 2.0 hub (Cypress EZ-USB FX2

Shows how retarded wiki actually is. "usually an AMD or Celeron" yet provide a specific motherboard model? lol.

That limits it to a socket 478, celeron.

 

OK, so, I need to source: 1GB (maybe 512 will do) DDR400 ram stick and the best celeron available (i'd go P4, but heat concerns me on those; maybe the slowest?).

Edited by Master_Scythe

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PM sent.

 

Hey noskcaj, that WMUBI or whatever it is; that thing that USB drive Linux has to allow you to run in a window on a windows PC.... does that ignore Xorg.conf?

 

because that solves EVERYTHING. USB\virtual window on a PC, and raw boot on the actual cabinets.

 

considering I set a large persistance file, changes should stick between 'using it like an app' and rebooting into 'full live' right?

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PM sent.

 

Hey noskcaj, that WMUBI or whatever it is; that thing that USB drive Linux has to allow you to run in a window on a windows PC.... does that ignore Xorg.conf?

 

because that solves EVERYTHING. USB\virtual window on a PC, and raw boot on the actual cabinets.

 

considering I set a large persistance file, changes should stick between 'using it like an app' and rebooting into 'full live' right?

WUBI has been discontinued AFAIK.

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Yeah.

 

I cant get a single installer to fucking complete on my USB stick.

 

Live CD to USB like uNEtbooti (or whatever it is) literally puts a live CD on the stick, not what I want.

Trying to get a portable install. Not friendly so far.

 

Might try puppy, or DSL.

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OK, turns out I need to buy a working DVD drive. There seems to be no way to INSTALL linux to a USB stick without CD boot.

You can make a "live CD" into a "Live USB" but that seems to be the limit. and boot is SLOW.

 

/sigh

 

I guess its as good a reason as any to finally get a BD drive.

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You need two USBs. one that the instaler runs on, ne to be installed to.

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not a bad idea actually. It was midnight when i was struggling with that, so I wansnt thinking clearly.

Also it was one of those days at work that you're glad firearms are impossible to obtain in Australia, lol.

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Also it was one of those days at work that you're glad firearms are impossible to obtain in Australia, lol.

i have access to heaps, so you're wrong there.

that gives me an idea for a green room thread.

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by impossible, i meant on a whim.

 

half an hour more and I get to go home and try install linux again >< gee isnt this getting FUN ><!

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This is why getting people onto linux is difficult. it's a better OS but getting users to ignore the brainfarts is near impossible

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Yeahpo.0

and this is why I'm now leaving *buntu for this build.

Its too much.

 

OK, got it installed. Boot times are shocking on USB. It fails about 3\10 boots, and quite frankly its just bloated for this kind of work.

 

I was going to try DamnSmallLinux but it doesnt use XORG so that rules that out, PUPPY does, but in some wierd way I dont understand :(

 

the quest continues. Trying Debian Netboot ISO

Edited by Master_Scythe

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Ok back to Lubuntu. Debian doesnt install any of my hardware ><

 

 

There has to be a boot option for graphics.... there HAS to be.

Ive seen a "select your graphics driver" switch before. Normally its to force a fallback to VESA if your other config doesnt work.....

I just need this. Anyone?

 

fucking 15khz monitors.

Edited by Master_Scythe

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Ok back to Lubuntu. Debian doesnt install any of my hardware ><

 

 

There has to be a boot option for graphics.... there HAS to be.

Ive seen a "select your graphics driver" switch before. Normally its to force a fallback to VESA if your other config doesnt work.....

I just need this. Anyone?

 

fucking 15khz monitors.

may i suggest you ask on askubuntu? or mod a better monitor in?

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there is no better than a 15khz arcade screen. OK you can get some 25khz, but they're thousands.

I got both Lubuntu and Xubuntu booting;

 

I ended up pulling the HDD from my laptop, and putting a new one in, and installing to the internal drive. I'll USB caddy it later.

Only problem is v12.04 (i think?) of both of those, throw happy little errors at bootup about notification daemon having caused a bunch of errors etc.

 

I tried to purge notification daemon, but APT said it'd remove my desktop environment too :(

Fuck me; all I want is a tiny Linux distribution that boots fast, but still uses XORG (and preferablty apt) so I can force 15khz. BAH!

 

OK, so at least it boots. But GRUB is a failboat. It only wakes up my LCD monitors every 10th boot or so, otherwise it sits at a black screen doing nothing, 30 seconds later, *buntu loads.

 

See Noskaj this is why people have a hard time getting into linux. I have a laptop with Xubuntu as the only OS and LOVE it; however this is beyond frustrating, and I haven't even got past "install the core OS" yet. If not for the 5ms or so delay windows creates (which is a lot for a rhythm game) I'd just be using miniXP by now.

 

Seriously, insert CD, install OS to internal drive, finish, reboot, errors.

Ill keep googling.

 

EDIT: Maybe LinuxMint Debian Edition is the next trial.... nope, rading about it, its apprently HORRIBLE at changing hardware boot support. Maybe I'll try a NON netboot Debian?

 

Linux really needs a "XYZ does not have drivers, would you like to install some now?" prompt.

Seriously; whos stupid idea was it to include drivers in the LIVECD (which is being used to install) and NOT copy them to the host machine during an install? I'm sure there exists some people, but I'd put dollars to doughnuts that the MAJORITY of people want the drivers for their fucking system.

 

Wonder how Windows8 Anywhere performs with the Soft15khz hack.....

Edited by Master_Scythe

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have you tried the ubuntu netboot?

and don't use lubuntu 12.04, we didn't make an LTS for lubuntu

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no I havent, I might actually..... ubuntu is just heavy is all. But I'll try it tonight and spend the time stripping it if it works.

 

Failing that I'll be off to windows land and an XP install for a trial.

It can do all the things I want out of the box.

 

I can add drivers to the system folder, to make it hardware independant (within reason).

I can boot to safe mode to ignore my GPU drivers, so I can have a 60hz boot (while leaving non safe mode a 15khz boot).

I can slim it down to only a few hundred meg, without losing any functionality.

 

My only problem will then be testing for any Sync issues caused by Windows over Linux and the way it handles USB interrupts. Though to be fair, my personal DDR machine uses a slim XP install and is flawless.

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OK Ive signed out of this one.

I resorted to a cracked HDD image of the original machine, so I have its original debian install, and all i need to do is update the application included within.

WHEW.

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Haven't visited FOSS for a while, this topic reminded me of this recent video of University of Nottingham Hackspace member using XUbuntu (older release plus wahcade and m.a.m.e.) to operate a home-built arcade machine ... nothing in the video on screen refresh rates though.

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