Raspberry Pi, and how to start X automatically

From: James Nylen 
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I finally got my Raspberry Pi in the mail last week (I ordered it back
in June).  I'm working on getting it set up with XBMC to play TV
shows.  My wife is not happy about the ethernet cable running through
the house, but I have assured her it is temporary.

One of the first things I need to do is have it start the X server
automatically when it powers up.  This page (
http://elinux.org/RPi

=============================================================== From: Dan Lyke ------------------------------------------------------ On Sun, 21 Oct 2012 22:09:51 -0400 James Nylen wrote:

=============================================================== From: Lynn Dixon ------------------------------------------------------ I have been running the Fedora Remix on my Raspberry Pi. The F17 version ships with XFCE and it of course launches X automatically and then fires up XFCE as its DE. You could install XBMC on it if you wanted to. The latest versions of the Fedora Remix works really nicely recently. There is an F18 alpha/beta build floating around out there using XFCE as its DE if you are interested in trying it out.

=============================================================== From: James Nylen ------------------------------------------------------ I have lots of stuff I'd like to do with small Internet-enabled devices too. I think RPi is overkill for most of them though. I want to do home automation, starting with simple stuff like controlling an outlet, and I'd love to make a sous-vide cooker that logs statistics, shows graphs, is web-controllable, etc. I'm leaning towards Arduino for those things, but I need to do more research and find the time.

=============================================================== From: Ed King ------------------------------------------------------ ----- Original Message ---- the house, but I have assured her it is temporary. hopefully its not on the floor, like the cable to my roku was... before my wife tripped over it... and ripped the guts out of the roku well I've been itchin' to take this thing apart anyway, so a $4 torx t7 from ace hardware, $15 worth of stuff at radioshack, and 2 hours later, I had my little friend working again... and the a-horror-movie-a-day marathon resumed... oh wait I forgot, real I.T. folks aren't supposed to be able to watch t.v. and relax

=============================================================== From: William Wade ------------------------------------------------------ Just as a note Home Depot has a great little multihead torx driver in the small to tiny sizes (as well as standard and P0-P000). They are Husky brand like $6 each, but well worth it. (Note the Lowes has a simular set that is worthless.) http://www.homedepot.com/buy/husky-8-in-1-torx-screwdriver-set-74502.html#.UIVJzGl27OI http://www.homedepot.com/h

=============================================================== From: Dan Lyke ------------------------------------------------------ On Sun, 21 Oct 2012 23:13:31 -0400 James Nylen wrote: Yeah, probably, but consider the problem of prototyping: Unless you're building your own hardware, a Raspberry Pi is not substantially more expensive than an Arduino. So the question is: Which is easier to turn into a full-featured web device? Sure, you can play around with an EtherShield and a tiny TCP/IP stack web and create a little web server in C that carefully manages limited flash avaoilable on an 8 bit embedded device. And this is a great strategy if you get to amortize your development costs over a couple of thousand or tens of thousands of devices. But a full on ARM device with Linux and an SD card lets you build your web server with Perl, not worry about squeezing out the unused bits of jQuery, and so forth. If you were building that sous vide cooker for the mass market? Start with Arduino and spend a bunch of money getting your parts cost down. If you're building it for you? Then we get to... "find the time". Exactly. This is why I won't look askance at anyone who decides a Raspberry Pi makes a great Christmas Tree sequencer (to take a project I built from laying out my own board a few years ago as an example). Dan

=============================================================== From: James Nylen ------------------------------------------------------ Thanks for the tips. I don't have much experience in this area so I will probably be back to ask more questions. My plan was to have a simple web server running on Arduino which would just accept basic commands over HTTP or some simpler protocol. Someone's already written the web server code (https://github.com/sirleech/Webduino). Anything more rich (like presenting a web front-end) would be handled by a program running on a real computer with a real web server. I should have said LAN-enabled instead of internet-enabled. So I would either have to: 1) Buy an Arduino + Ethernet shield, and connect sensors to it 2) Buy a RPi + some kind of add-on board for connecting sensors (as far as I can tell, several are in development, but Arduino is a more mature platform for connecting stuff to the real world) The fact that I would still have to buy an add-on board for RPi seems to be a good argument in favor of using Arduino. Is any of that wrong? Is that a good approach, or would you still say to use a RPi?

=============================================================== From: Dan Lyke ------------------------------------------------------ I think this is a totally reasonable solution, it'll just cost more(!) than the Raspberry Pi. Which was kind of my point: I love Arduino, I was working with Atmel AVR chips before Arduino, and think the architecture rocks and all that. Nothin' against it. I have a number of Arduino and AVR devices at home, and for one-offs I will be deploying them before I buy a Raspberry Pi because the limiting factor is round-tuits and I already have way way too many "Oh, that'd be cool to play with" hardware devices cluttering my desk(s). It's just *amazing* what you get in the Raspberry Pi. Yeah, the block diagrams for the Raspberry Pi show a GPIO header on the board, I suspect that you'll be able to either memory map those and access them as something running root, or get to them via /dev/gpioXXX. I don't know what temperature sensors you were planning on using, I suspect that GPIO is just simple digital, which means you'd probably go with something like the 1-wire devices, if you needed an ADC then it becomes tougher. I think you're totally on-track, it's just that I've seen this "Raspberry Pi is overkill for" meme a couple of times, and I just want to point out that Moore's Law has caught up with the AVR architecture Arduino: I bet the Raspberry Pi doesn't use any more power, and in quantity 1 it's cheaper... Skipping backwards in your email: A handy trick for JavaScript security issues: reverse proxy server on your main server. I've used this for a couple of things to punch a hole here or there to some limited facility device in an otherwise rich web page. Dan