[Server-devel] XSCE Sprint

David Leeming david at leeming-consulting.com
Thu Jul 11 16:57:14 EDT 2013

This will be very useful. Can't wait to try it.

David Leeming
Solomon Islands 

-----Original Message-----
From: server-devel-bounces at lists.laptop.org
[mailto:server-devel-bounces at lists.laptop.org] On Behalf Of Tony Anderson
Sent: Thursday, 11 July 2013 6:49 p.m.
To: James Cameron; server-devel at lists.laptop.org; George Hunt; David
Farning; Jerry Vonau
Subject: Re: [Server-devel] XSCE Sprint


Thanks again. The laptops are good to go for this school year (12.1.0). 
I will be able to work the collection stick problem when I return to the 
schools (probably in December).
I'll double check the flash time to check for variability between units.

At these schools all the laptops are XO-1 or XO1.5. However, I think a 
Nandblast facility working across all the models would be very useful 
for the start-of-year update.



On 07/11/2013 09:32 AM, James Cameron wrote:
> On Wed, Jul 10, 2013 at 11:07:04AM +0200, Tony Anderson wrote:
>> Hi,
>> Thanks again for this!
>> What I gather is that we should use Nandblast from an XO for
>> reflash. For a time it was not supported for XO-1.5, but my current
>> understanding is that it supported for all versions of XO.
> Up to 13.1.0 it is supported on XO-1, XO-1.5 and XO-1.75.
> It is fast for XO-1, and quite slow for XO-1.5 and XO-1.75.  The
> breakeven point, where I would switch from USB drive to NANDblaster,
> is about five XO-1, and about twenty for XO-1.5 and XO-1.75.
> In 13.2.0 it is broken, and I am working on that in ticket #12726,
> hoping to get fixes in before release.  Fixes are available for XO-1
> (Q2F19) and XO-1.5 (Q3C16).  XO-1.75 is still a problem.
> It was not intended to be supported on XO-4 with the new 802.11n
> wireless card, but so far it looks possible.
>> In Lesotho, the flash was taking 15min from boot to reboot for
>> registration. These laptops (XO-1) date from the first G1G1 and so
>> there is no telling about endurance.
> That time of 15 minutes is far too long, and should be investigated
> ... if the internal storage is three times slower than when the
> laptops were produced, you will have performance problems.  I have
> some old XO-1 units here that have been used by children, and they are
> not showing that symptom.
>> Naturally, reload of the Journal occurs via the file system after
>> the flash. Sadly, this is not a current issue because none of the
>> deployments actually use the Journal (e.g. in Lesotho the laptops
>> are shared among several students).
>> The laptops (XO-1.5s) at Saint Jacobs were sponsored by a group in
>> Stuttgart and are not part of the Rwanda purchase. In any case, I
>> believe the information needed for the collection stick is available
>> (serial number and uuid).
> If it is already available, get it to me.
>> Yours,
>> Tony
>> On 07/10/2013 10:55 AM, James Cameron wrote:
>>> On Wed, Jul 10, 2013 at 10:11:14AM +0200, Tony Anderson wrote:
>>>> The 'locked' XO problem derives from XOs distributed in the minimum
>>>> 100 XO purchase - many of these are locked. Also, in Rwanda the
>>>> policy is to keep the laptops locked even though they have
>>>> indefinite leases.
>>> Rwanda probably has a deployment key and should be able to sign builds
>>> with it.  My guess is that the laptops would also have the deployment
>>> keys injected already.  You will need to work with the people who have
>>> the keys.
>>>> My current plans are to visit these schools in December and so I may
>>>> be able to get them unlocked then.
>>> http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Collection_stick is perfect for this,
>>> provided the deployment did not remove the OLPC keys.
>>> (I don't have records of what deployments have done).
>>>> What I would really love is a 'Nandblast' capability in the firmware
>>>> that gets it's image from the schoolserver. That probably would work
>>>> (how does an XO know an image is coming over wifi from an XO or a
>>>> school server?).
>>> There is no implementation of NANDblaster for the school server,
>>> because it requires special support in the wireless device.  A typical
>>> access point will not work.  It requires an XO as the sender.
>>> (NANDblaster is implemented in the firmware, not the operating system.
>>> An alternate design could be engineered, but that doesn't seem likely
>>> to be attempted.)
>>>> The normal flash problem is that several XOs need to be reflashed at
>>>> one time, so the usb key approach is time-consuming. My experience
>>>> is that a reflash from usb key takes 15min. Naturally, one key to
>>>> this process is the ability to reload the backed up (hopefully)
>>>> Journal.
>>> Reloading the backed up journal is costing you 10min?  Reflashing an
>>> XO-1 from USB drive 13.2.0-12 costs only 5min.  If the reflash is
>>> taking much longer than that, there may be an endurance or end of life
>>> problem with the internal storage of the XO.

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