I got a Palm Pre because I want a Linux smartphone that is not locked down (like the G1), on which I can play with Debian and even my own kernel. But I also want one that seems likely to be widely viable going forward, and there I have my doubts about OpenMoko, sadly.
(Or, I got a Palm Pre because I dreamt last night that I got one, and decided my subconcious must have made a decision after dithering for years. And because Madduck rules.)
Debian chroot on Palm Pre
This is a quick installation of a Debian chroot on the Palm Pre phone. Similar methods are explained at the Pre Dev Wiki. But they have you download a prebuilt Debian image and modify the Palm webOS system to install ssh; I preferred to use debootstrap and keep webOS changes to a minimum.
Also, since the Pre uses LVM, its media partition can be resized on the fly. That allows for a larger Debian filesystem, and I think is a nicer method than the loopback filesystem approach documented elsewhere, but do read the warnings about Palm, LVM, and upgrades here.
On the Pre:
- Enable dev mode
by opening the Pre's Launcher and typing the following into it:
- Plug the Pre into your laptop, tell it to charge via USB, while doing the following on the laptop.
On a Linux laptop:
- Run debootstrap to build an armel chroot:
sudo debootstrap --foreign --arch=armel sid /tmp/debian
- Download novacom,
cdto it, and build it:
sudo apt-get install libusb-dev; make
- Transfer the armel chroot from the laptop to the Pre:
(cd /tmp; sudo tar czv debian) | sudo ./novacom put file:///tmp/debian.tar.gz
sudo ./novacomto get root shell on the Pre.
- In that shell, use LVM to resize the existing /media/internal volume
down to 1 GB, and create a new 6 GB one for Debian:
cp -a /media/internal /opt umount /media/internal lvresize -L 1G /dev/mapper/store-media mkdosfs -F 32 /dev/mapper/store-media mount /media/internal mv /opt/internal/ /opt/internal/. /media/internal rmdir /opt/internal lvcreate -l 100%FREE -n debian store mkfs.ext3 /dev/store/debian mkdir /media/debian echo "/dev/mapper/store-debian /media/debian auto noatime 0 0" >> /etc/fstab mount /media/debian
- Then in the Pre's root shell, you can unpack Debian, set up some bind
mounts to allow accessing the Pre's filesystems from inside Debian, and
chroot in to finish debootstrap:
cd /media tar zxvf /tmp/debian.tar.gz mkdir /media/debian/media/pre-root /media/debian/media/internal echo "/ /media/debian/media/pre-root bind defaults,bind 0 0" >> /etc/fstab echo "/var /media/debian/media/pre-root/var bind defaults,bind 0 0" >> /etc/fstab echo "/var/log /media/debian/media/pre-root/var/log bind defaults,bind 0 0" >> /etc/fstab echo "/tmp /media/debian/tmp bind defaults,bind 0 0" >> /etc/fstab echo "/proc /media/debian/proc bind defaults,bind 0 0" >> /etc/fstab echo "/dev /media/debian/dev bind defaults,bind 0 0" >> /etc/fstab echo "/dev/pts /media/debian/dev/pts bind defaults,bind 0 0" >> /etc/fstab echo "/sys /media/debian/sys bind defaults,bind 0 0" >> /etc/fstab echo "/media/internal /media/debian/media/internal bind defaults,bind 0 0" >> /etc/fstab mount -a chroot debian /debootstrap/debootstrap --second-stage ln -sf /proc/mounts /etc/mtab ln -sf /media/pre-root/etc/resolv.conf /etc/resolv.conf apt-get clean
- Now customise the Debian chroot as usual.
How this could be made easier:
- Make a debian package of novacom.
- Installation script? debcoexist? d-i?
- Install openssh in Debian and configure it to start at boot.
- Set up VNC, install VNC app in webOS to allow accessing a Debian desktop.