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alacant

migration windows to linux

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1 hour ago, The Admiral said:

Isn't it because new computers could be locked into MS and would make installation difficult? And of course, you wouldn't want to seriously invest in something that isn't going to work. Well, rightly or wrongly, that's my concern.

Ian

I thought it was more that a recent, supported Linux will quite probably run on an old machine whereas it might not run, say, Win10.

James

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4 hours ago, alacant said:

Three months on. Anyone got there yet?

I get the feeling that unless you've struggled -and mastered-  Linux on a daily basis for a long time, controlling your telescope and taking a photograph through it under indi is just not gonna happen.

I'm still not sure why much of the advice goes that Linux should be installed on an old computer. AFAICT, that serves only to make an already insurmountable task impossible!

Optimism...

I'm still waiting for Neil to get it working, can't understand what's taking him so long :grin:

Dave

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7 hours ago, Davey-T said:

I'm still waiting for Neil to get it working, can't understand what's taking him so long :grin:

Dave

A mixture of apathy and apprehension...

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I tried Linux Ubuntu some time back on an old Vista populated Acer Laptop!

Its still on there, but if  recall, the PC was very slow, especially by todays standards, but Mrs C is wanting a 'keyboard' and a 'mouse' option rather than tapping her fingers on a Tablet, so I might find some time this week(end) to boot the laptop up and either upgrade or just do the whole install once again.

I do also recall Ubuntu looking something similar to an apple screen and the difference when mousing?  single vs. double clicks.
Now I own a Mac, the similarity is uncanny. 

This thread has given  me some incentive  to try again with the old Acer. I also have two W7 PC's that I'm presently setting up to work in tandem, networked, to run a specific MicroSoft 32bit program, even though the PC's are 64bit OS. I'd like a newer i7 7700K  based PC setup, but once you have a Mac, do you go back!!!!!

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13 minutes ago, Charic said:

Its still on there, but if  recall, the PC was very slow, especially by todays standards, but Mrs C is wanting a 'keyboard' and a 'mouse' option rather than tapping her fingers on a Tablet, so I might find some time this week(end) to boot the laptop up and either upgrade or just do the whole install once again.

As I posted about somewhat earlier in this thread, different distributions can give quite different performance on the same hardware.  To me a good deal of the difference seems to be down to the amount of "eye candy".  Choosing a release that uses XFCE or LXDE as the window manager can help quite a bit on older machines.  There's a Mint distribution that uses XFCE by default and I think I posted details of an LXDE-based on that I installed on an Aspire One and found usable, though certainly not fast.

James

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I installed Linux Mint 18 on my old Dell D430 laptop as dual-boot a few weeks ago. I installed by copying an ISO onto a USB stick with some special piece of software. That was not too difficult once I sorted out the partitioning (with some partitioning program IIRC). I didn't want to zap the Windows installation even though it was giving a BSOD. 

Today I tried installing Stellarium. That didn't require any command line - I just found it in a software menu under Technology downloads. It installed itself, unfortunately it doesn't work - it starts and shuts down.  This is a known problem, with workarounds, but at this point I gave up.

Maybe I'll try fixing the BSOD.

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So, a few more attempts, but no one just yet. Plenty of time...

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20 hours ago, Charic said:

I tried Linux Ubuntu some time back on an old Vista populated Acer Laptop!

Its still on there, but if  recall, the PC was very slow, especially by todays standards, but Mrs C is wanting a 'keyboard' and a 'mouse' option rather than tapping her fingers on a Tablet, so I might find some time this week(end) to boot the laptop up and either upgrade or just do the whole install once again.

I do also recall Ubuntu looking something similar to an apple screen and the difference when mousing?  single vs. double clicks.
Now I own a Mac, the similarity is uncanny. 

This thread has given  me some incentive  to try again with the old Acer. I also have two W7 PC's that I'm presently setting up to work in tandem, networked, to run a specific MicroSoft 32bit program, even though the PC's are 64bit OS. I'd like a newer i7 7700K  based PC setup, but once you have a Mac, do you go back!!!!!

You do go back. I go back and forth between my Air and desktop working machine that runs Debian Linux. Ubuntu is actually just Debian with a little polishing and slightly different packages. For older machines just go Debian with XFCE or iceWM and it tranforms older laptops.

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21 hours ago, Charic said:

I'd like a newer i7 7700K

Ideal. Ubuntu, indi and ekos will install in seconds, blink and you'll miss Siril stacking and StarTools will fly. A one stop ap box:)

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Hi Guys

Been reading most of these replies and having a few smiles along the way as I think I have the `t shirt` with all the problems encountered by folk dipping their foot into the Linux pond. Been a Linux user on and off for years sometimes loving it when everything works then you update something and it all goes t!?s up. Burnt the midnight oil on many a night trying to get hardware to be recognised and my laptop has nearly been turned into a frisbie more than once in the observatory 😁.  My obs laptop has Kubuntu and Windows 10 on it. Kubuntu is a Linux OS with a KDE desktop which feels and looks more like a Windows screen and also is the OS of choice by the Kstars/Indi writer (his name escapes me at the mo!) Having said all that my desktop is running Windows 10 which I use for photography and other stuff, Yes Linux has post processing software but I`m more familiar with the Windows apps and to be fair apart from the infernal Windows 10 updating fiasco I get on pretty well with it.

If I was asked how to get into Linux I would suggest  (Indeed the way I learnt Linux) using an old laptop/desktop preferably with nothing on the hard drive , get one of the monthly Linux mags which contain dvd`s already for installing so you don`t have to prepare a disc (which really isn`t hard when you`ve done it a few times) pop the disc in the pc and just go for it so it matters not if the pc breaks/packs up whatever and if you get it wrong, reformat and reinstall again and so on. Strange as it may seem but the more things go wrong (and it will!) the more you actually learn. When Linux is working fine there is nothing to compare it but as a born twiddler I often stop a perfectly good system by altering or needlessly updating files but Linux doesn`t take over your system for updating like Windows so its just down to choice.

Don`t know if that helps anyone but it worked for me 😔.

cheers

Steve

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Dangerous territory for me, as I don't fully understand Linux ( I have Google to help me? ) but my present Ubuntu 16.04 LTS is taking  something like 2.30 mins to boot, on reaching the icon filled launcher.
A quick update of the HWE stack ( Googled ) has reduced my boot  time to 1.35 mins, so something has worked in the right direction.
I'll sleep better tonight, lol

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I recently got Stellarium 0.12.8 working on an old Dell D430 laptop under Windows XP.  Version 0.16 wouldn't work - I assume a hardware issue.  

This laptop has dual boot with Mint Linux, so earlier I tried installing the latest Stellarium under Mint.  Easy install, but the program failed at startup.  Probably no chance that this would work - if it doesn't work under Windows it probably won't work under Linux either - see above.

Downloaded the .tar.gz for an earlier version of Stellarium and unpacked it. Could not figure out how to make it install - no simple instructions available.  After a couple of hours searching decided it was too much for my small brain.  This is where Linux fails against Windows - once you leave the easy graphical interface and enter the command line window it's expert territory.😕

It's good that Stellarium retain the old versions so that one can try them on older hardware.

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On 03/10/2018 at 21:10, Charic said:

A quick update of the HWE stack ( Googled ) has reduced my boot  time to 1.35 mins, so something has worked in the right direction.

Mrs C is saying too old, too heavy and  too slow! ..................I do hope she's referring to the laptop?

Anyhow, four days later , even the thought of buying her a simple Chromebook for her needs is not  fraught without  complications and decisions, and availability seems to be an issue too.
Its great that Currys PC World have them on display but why is nothing ever in stock, Grrrrrr!!

I'm sure I'll find a reason to use the old acer, but for now its back on the shelf.

Edited by Charic

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Hi everyone. Just my occasional bump to ask if anyone has managed the switch yet. If you have, do tell your story. 

Cheers and clear skies.

 

 

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Still trying but have got a 90% working Grab and Go system using mixture of Linux on RPI Zero W , RPI3 and Amd 64bit Fedora running Kstars/Ekos.

The bug that sopped me I found out to be a setting in Canon 100D which stopped it being used correctly with the Indi DSLR driver - once that was "cured" then other funnies appear but all in all Kstars/Ekos on Linux (all Linux) or Kstars/Ekos on Windows 10 and Linux Indiservers on RPI(zero and RPI3 chained/unchained (Google it for non Indi people) works well so long I use a really good Access Point - I use a 5/2.4ghz TP-link AP/Router this gives me 90% signal level over 30 feet (thats just the 2.4ghz) and as it can run on 12v DC will run at "Dark sites" no problem.

Using my Canon DSLR I now out perform(download speed wise) the same set up on Windows using APT tethered via USB plus I get FITS files. Naive CR2 files (about 20mb) are downloaded from the RPI (Zero or RPI3) in about 3-5secs and the Fits (35mb) a second or 3 later. The DSLR driver now works 99% of the time and less / shorter wires (RPI to DSLR is a 30cm cable). So I have a true wireless Canon DSLR without spending £100+ can even use it for Day time photography LOL

I have stuck using Synscan Indi driver with my handset(I have tried most of the rest) - the latter connects to the mount and then Indi connects to the handset via a std RS232/USB adapter (no setting up required!). This has proved to be very reliable and it means I can connect to ANY SW mount ,that can use a handset, just by changing the Handset to Mount cable normally supplied with the mount. No worrying about COM ports or Com port numbers. When SW bring out the SW Synscan App for Linux next year(2019 maybe LOL) i will most likely use that to replace the Handset.

SkySafari 5 for Android works with Indi and that means (subject to Wifi signal - hence the TP-Link AP) I can work outside to control the mount but to be honest I prefer Kstars/Ekos on a laptop as I can do it all (mount ,image,Focus(nearly), Platesolve) all in one place - nice warm car or my office at home.

Platesolving is faster and more successfully  solves even though the AMD 64bit (8gb memory,normal HDD) is slower than my Intel I3 (64bit 8gb,SSD) Obsys set up

One important feature that started working when I solved my Canon setting problem is the Scheduler - bearing in mind its free - this module is very powerful,fairly reliable and gives you the ability to set up a nights workflow. It gives the ability to Goto an object,Focus,Platesolve to dead centre the object, and take a series of images with a single click of a run button or  start at a set time or even when the object is at a set altitude. It could ,but I haven't needed too, open the Obsys roof do the above sequence of events and close the roof and shutdown the system. I believe someone does this remotely from UK to Obsys in Germany 🙂 It cannot clear skies or stop it raining to order !!!!!   For a free bit of software that's pretty good

My Grab and Go takes about 5 mins to set up/take down and because I do wide field I dont bother to align I just Platesolve if I want an object dead centre.

Would I use it for my Obsys - no not yet Kstars/Ekos still falls over too many times when I try something new - like Focusing via Canon camera len's - which works on APT under Windows. But I will do it sooner rather than later !

My Asi 120mm USB2 has stopped working properly under Linux (yes it has been modified) but it still works under Windows Sharpcap - but then the 120mm USB2 was a bag of worms from the start IMHO - even the creator admits it isn't a Std USB interface.

Something I miss is Astrotoaster(DSS) there doesn't seem to be a simple equivalent Linux product (free) - something I feel Indi needs to address one day.

One point I will make ,and I will get shot for this, is that INDI is like Ascom in that its someone "baby" and the "take it or leave" attitude appears now and then especially when I comes to querying why it cant do something(or more simply) or the layout - its not the easiest thing to learn. Sorry true 🙂.

But as with Ascom, Indi forum users(are creators) are a helpful lot - so could be a case of "please some of the people some of the time etc"

So in a nutshell if you put a bit of work into it and have patience(something I lack) its better than Windows set ups , cheaper than both Windows/Apple equiv and could become dominant if one of the larger Mount /Camera manufacturers take it under their wing - Note ZWO are using it in the product - and sell a complete ready made system for "faint at heart"

So come on have a go even if its to create a cheap Grab and Go wide field set up - you might just enjoy it and become a convert LOL

P.S. still haven' fixed my Tee character on my keyboard.

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On 25/10/2018 at 20:59, alacant said:

Just my occasional bump to ask if anyone has managed the switch yet. If you have, do tell your story. 

 

 

I’ve almost made the switch for image capture.

Previously I was using APT/PHD2/CDC/eqmod etc on my regular Windows 10 laptop that would be outside with me without issue but I really wanted a remote option so I could sit inside in the warm and automate a session plan.

I started looking at Indi/Kstars/Ekos again with a view of putting it on a Pi3 if it worked for me. I put the latest build of Ubuntu onto an old netbook which was gathering dust and installed the latest version of Indi and Kstars and teamviewer. 

It all works ok except for two points, firstly it is slow and secondly after about half an hour tracking in PHD2 and using Ekos’s internal guider, guiding begins to play up. Never had this issue with Windows.

I had an older version of Ubuntu on the netbook many years ago and it ran quickly so clearly the newer version needs better hardware or a lighter weight desktop. So much so it is faster to just run APT/PHD2/CDC/eqmod on Windows 7 on the netbook and access with teamviewer remotely. I really like the session automation in Ekos but it’s no good if I can’t get it working with reasonable performance on that netbook.

 

Seems like many of the Linux distributions out of the box have put on weight in recent years! Something people used to laugh at Windows for doing at every release.

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That's one of the problems I've found with 18.04, to make it leaner, some things have been left out, which at first prohibit the running of KStars etc.

I've spent some time, working out what 'missing' bits are needed, to make everything run ok, & so I now have a working system on both a Rock64 & RockPro64. 

I wouldn't use a Pi3, which I've tried, as it quickly runs out of resources & is missing USB 3 (needed for 1600 MM) and slower network etc. There are other small form factor processing cards, which to my mind are much more apt for what we require.

 

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5 hours ago, Dr_Ju_ju said:

quickly runs out of resources & is missing USB 3 (needed for 1600 MM) and slower network

Totally agreed on CCD /USB3 use but RPI3 is fine for Mount Control,Focuser Control, DSLR and Filter wheels as none are very taxing. Plus RPI3 could do with ,at least, inbuilt EMMC.

The Networking while not the fastest ,as it shares the USB BUS, is adequate and doesn't seem to cause any problems (IMHO and experience). Even the RPI Zero(W) runs the DSLR well (as good as my 64bit Up Squared with its USB3/2 ,EMMC storage and  4GB memory).  

Plus working 5ghz wireless networking and 802.11 AC(450mb-1300mb) ,for those who want fast wireless,  is almost non existent on Linux and at best needs compiling as no working drivers exist(or very very limited) out of the box and very little mainstream support exists at the moment. Although this is not an Indi  stopper.

Plus you can easily run Indi "modules" on different devices which is one of the reasons  Indi protocol was developed and is a plus.

Granted I personally wouldn't ,and don't ,run offline Platesolving (but I have done Online) on my RPI3 but there again most SBC's,under £200, can't even match my 8yr old 6 core 64bit 8MB AMD with SSD doing Platesolving either - reading different users experiences on many UK/USA sites!

Besides costs (Rpi VS other SBC's) the biggest problem ,which the RPI3 doesn't suffer to the same extent, is limited support (not Indi but the OEM).  

Just look at the Rock and other SBC threads on Indilib !

IMHO - I would not recommended any user, who prefers the simple life, to attempt  non mainstream SBC's Indilib.  

BUT INDI is getting there and does/will provide a good , cost effective,"all in one" package ,flexible alternative to Windows .

E.G. My fully working Indi "Grab and Go" with DSLR would not be possible on Windows hardware for under £50 (including legal copy of Windows).

In the end its "horses for courses" and personal preferences but the hardware variety available is very interesting  and fun especially during long cloudy spells. 🙂

Carry on the good work DR-Ju_Ju your work helps others later. 🙂

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Hi everyone

Six months on now so just a curiosity check to ask if anyone has managed it yet. As it is seemingly as impossible as astro-photography itself, I thought that someone else may have photographic evidence...

<latest advice>

Please don't burden your attempts with old computers or SBCs with little or no clout. ASCOM on an i7 gaming machine is difficult enough. Multiply that several fold and you have an idea of how difficult INDI is going to be on anything less. Or is it?

</latest advice>

Did you hear the one about the guy who posted a newbie question on a Linux forum? 

Is that provocatively challenging enough I wonder?!

As it's a festive time of year, here's a shot of my hastily-thrown-together-wide-field-takumar-200 INDI setup used for the comet.

Merry Xmas everyone. 

 

 

IMG_20181216_142917.jpg

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2 minutes ago, alacant said:

Six months on now so just a curiosity check to ask if anyone has managed it yet.

Is it really six months ? doesn't time fly when you're old, still procrastinating here, got no further than old laptop with new SSD waiting to be fitted :D

Dave :icon_santa:

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I gave up with the old laptop, still in cupboard, and Mrs  has her new Chromebook, but there's every possibility I'll tinker further with  the old Acer.
Next, the Samsung EVO 850 SSD is  a possible 'upgrade' for my old W7  Intel Core Q8300 system. Not purchased yet, but needing the 1TB option, so I can clone the existing 1TB HDD. It's probably the cheapest upgrade over buying a 2019 PC. Its just to run FSX!

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I've been running smoothly for some time now with INDI on the AAEON-UP and Kstars/EKOS running on Windows as long as they are connected via ethernet. Wireless has been problematic but I'm almost there. The inbuilt wifi chip was flakey in terms of getting a good connection as was the little 11n USB dongle I tried. Suspecting voltage issues I got a better powerpack and that helped a bit. What helped most was using an old 11g dongle. I get a good connection but still have the odd dropout every hour or two. To solve it I have to unplug and replug the dongle. The AAEON keeps running but I then have to restart Kstars/Ekos.

So my learning is that with Linux (Ubuntu 16.04 in my case) its important to get the right Wifi device. 11n seems to be an issue in particular. Having said that, the wifi setup is now about the same reliability as running a long USB cable from PC to mount and the ethernet setup is pretty much flawless. If I had a remote setup I'd stick with ethernet for speed and reliability. At home it would be nice to have faster wifi but instead I just save the images to disk and when done I hook up the ethernet (gigabit) to download everything in seconds. Over 11g it takes several minutes and even one frame takes about 20 seconds. Saving images to the AAEON eMMC disk via USB3 is instantaneous.

The main thing I like about wifi is that I have just one 12V cable going to the mount. With ethernet I also need a (thin) CAT6 cable. But I've also acquired a slip ring for the power which I plan to mount where the polar scope goes. Having an Avalon mount that means I could, in theory, rotate the mount in RA endlessly without any cable twist. Overall, the reduced issues with cabling is one of my main drivers for going to INDI.

 

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3 minutes ago, kens said:

EKOS running on Windows 

Almost there then. Well done🙂

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17 hours ago, kens said:

Wireless has been problematic but I'm almost there

Yep the AAeon support for wifi is appalling IMO - even using Windows 10 the internal driver has many problems. Gave up using internal Wifi and now use 11ac usb adapter - but on Windows 10 only but it works well (with TP-link below) - Linux support for 5ghz 11ac usb adapters is poor IMO. Having said that the inbuilt 11ac works on RPI3+.

However you have to think outside the box. I now use a TP-Link C7/C9 AP (runs on 12v), as its only 6 feet (2m) away from the SCB never drops a connection and has no comms wires  dangling from the mount -  in the field its a bit big but haven't found a decent replacement at a decent price. As the TP-link runs both 2.4 and 5 ghz networks I can connect to any Wifi network (home or away) and download speeds are good - 25mb CR2 in 4-6 secs , FITS 35mb 8-10 secs  - 100mb up 350-450mb download.  

IMHO Indilib ,as I have said before ,still need to concentrate on "core" stable set ups and stop trying to be everything for everyone. The "Indi Team" work very very hard but are spread too thin IMO.

I personally now use Synscan App under Wine (Ubuntu 18 and Fedora 28 work fine)  so that I can simultaneously use BOTH IndiLib and Ascom (via Synscan Ascom Mobile interface). This gives me a wider availability of devices to connect too - so a "horses for course's" approach. 

Again,IMHO, Indilib needs to develop a working Windows Indiserver (Not the Indigo/Cloudmakers Windows Ascom server) so that devices on Windows can be connected to Indilib/Kstars/Ekos running on Unix or Windows without Ascom.

For me the Indi mobile set up(Mount etc) can now be deployed and working in under 10mins with minimal wires which was my main aim - I would love to have the "Slip Ring" facility Ken has - I can dream. 🙂

Funny thing is I now run a "fixed" stable version of Indi/Kstars/Ekos (2.9.8) on a Ubuntu 18 on a old 4 core,4mb ram,120gb SSD Amd PC - plus ,on the same latter PC, a "bleeding edge/Daily updates" Indi/Kstars/Ekos(3.0.0) on the same PC using Virtualbox /Ubuntu 18 -  I cannot see any difference in speed/response. Plus it allows me to try the latest changes without compromising my "everyday" set up or changing wiring/networks etc.

IMO the latest version of Indi/Kstars/Ekos is pretty close to being a fully integrated reliable Astro work horse.

Clear Skies to all for 2019 - Indilib user or not 🙂

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On 27/12/2018 at 07:06, alacant said:

Almost there then. Well done🙂

I'm not so motivated to move the client to Linux since it works fine on Windows. Linux excels in embedded systems like INDI and the distributed architecure of INDI makes it a natural choice. I do run a Ubuntu VM on my windows box but that is mainly for development work on PHD2 and INDI and Kstars/EKOS works fine there but its a pain to have to launch the VM for an AP session.

7 hours ago, stash_old said:

IMHO Indilib ,as I have said before ,still need to concentrate on "core" stable set ups and stop trying to be everything for everyone. The "Indi Team" work very very hard but are spread too thin IMO.

its one of the downsides of an opensource system. ASCOM has the advantage of being a vendor driven standard so they develop the drivers whereas INDI has to be built from the ground up by enthusiasts who naturally focus on the bits of interest to themselves.

With the advent of the ASIAir we might see more vendors getting on board with INDI and that would help it immensely. If vendors were developing the drivers the "team" could focus instead on Kstars/EKOS functionality and we could even see more software vendors developing INDI compliant applications - the ASIAir is an example of this.

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