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Gentoo on a Wondermedia WM8650 tablet?
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Aquous
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Joined: 08 Jan 2011
Posts: 646

PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 6:19 pm    Post subject: Gentoo on a Wondermedia WM8650 tablet? Reply with quote

So, I just got this tablet which identifies itself as a 'Wondermedia WM8650'. It's running Android 2.2 and I hate it already. I would like to completely wipe Android and install a proper distro, preferably Gentoo, in its place.
I've never used Android before, so there are a few things I need some help with...
  • how do I become root?
  • when I become root, can I just set up a Gentoo chroot and install grub normally instead of the Android bootloader?

Thank you for your time :)
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NeddySeagoon
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Joined: 05 Jul 2003
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aquous,

Proceede with caution. Google will tell you how to root your device - if it breaks, you get to keep the pieces as the process will void your warranty.
The Wondermedia WM8650 is based on an ARM 11 CPU core. You won't want to build anything on that so you should cross compile from a desktop system.

The hard bits will be kernel and graphics support - there might not be any outside of Android.
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NeddySeagoon

Computer users fall into two groups:-
those that do backups
those that have never had a hard drive fail.
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Aquous
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 8:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Neddy, thanks for the input :)

NeddySeagoon wrote:
The Wondermedia WM8650 is based on an ARM 11 CPU core.

/proc/cpuinfo identifies it as "ARM926EJ-S rev 5 (v51)" which, according to Google and Wikipedia, is ARM9.

I've managed to root the device. I can get a chroot up but I would prefer to boot Gentoo directly.
I have the source code to the custom kernel for this chip, so that part will be easy, but how do I tell the bootloader to pass the kernel something like 'root=/dev/sdb1' (assuming my SD card will be sdb1)?
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NeddySeagoon
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aquous,

You probably don't.
The kernel can contain an embedded command line. Try using that.

Also /join #gentoo-embedded on irc.freenode.net
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NeddySeagoon

Computer users fall into two groups:-
those that do backups
those that have never had a hard drive fail.
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panyo
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Joined: 02 Jan 2004
Posts: 86

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="Aquous"
I've managed to root the device. I can get a chroot up but I would prefer to boot Gentoo directly.
I have the source code to the custom kernel for this chip, so that part will be easy, but how do I tell the bootloader to pass the kernel something like 'root=/dev/sdb1' (assuming my SD card will be sdb1)?[/quote]

I believe these products, like earlier wondermedia netbooks use v-boot which loads u-boot.
You can see some source for u-boot here:
https://github.com/atsidaev/u-boot-wm8650

and a simple tutorial here:
http://gitorious.org/linux-on-via-vt8500/pages/HowToUbootScriptcmd
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