Libby Project

2 Cotas - 2006/03/29

I have put my hands in a Libretto PC. This is a Pentium 166 mmx full spec pc, with 32Mb, 800×400 VGA and the size of a small book. It’s powered by 12/15v 5 watts juice, so its’ possible to put everything mobile by the cigarette lighter. It’s kinda old, 1998, but some Net digging and research manage to find some tools and aids.

I have an iPaq 2215, with a Bluetooth and a CF card GPS. But its a “boy’s device” with WinCE SO. At the main PC I could manage to put to work seamless the Ozi and the Gsak software along with de HTML’s power of the IE. The striped down CE versions of that does not fulfil my “needs”. Lately I’m using it only at the paperless part of Geocaching. One of the things I lack the most was the left mouse click that brings the HTML cache description just out of the label on the Ozi’s moving map.

So a small pc could worth a second look. And a really small pc deserves a try. Originally it was bundled with win95 and is really a sucking machine… First, upgrading to a decent bios, 8.1 is the last available from Toshiba; second, power it with 98. That was the easy part.

It lacks outside connections, only RS232, Centronics, an IrDa and a couple of PCMCIA ports. No USB.
The package I have has 2 more pieces of hardware, an extended port enhancer, a dummy idea for an extra PS2 socket, and also a PCcard floppy.

The first step was to change the HD, a slim 2.5-2Gb for a 10Gb same format. I intend to put there another, bigger, SO, the complete set of emoitoitoito geographical charts, the full version of Ozi, Gsak and its databases. At least. A couple of Google satellite Photos will be good too.

The support hardware I have does not allow otherwise, so I began to link by USB the new HD to my laptop and preload a copy of Win98 to setup in it directly. HD back in its place, starts fine, configures all right and works nicely. Video and floppy drivers on, USB drivers off. I could not manage to out to work a PCMCIA to 2xUSB I have but could live with that if the IrDa helped… did not!
Change of plans. Daily connection possible via floppy and small to enormous upgrades via the workaround trick: HD linked to laptop USB.

I realize that it was a hibernate function “a lá Toshiba”, it simply write the data in a precise location over the end of the data region of the 2 Gb HD, without caring about HD sizes or any other issue. Easy stuff, just off the bloody routine. The other solution was to portioning the HD in a bunch of parts, beginning and ending in precise locations… lately if needed.

The GPS CF card is working and the NMEA data flow is processed by Ozi with no more cheats. Field test indicate good, steady and reliable positioning. Next step: load the complete 700 waypoints list. Problems arise. Sudden and regularly Ozi crashes and needs reloading. Not funny. At all.
In the mean time I realise that the last, already updated, Bios was win2k functions ready. Let’s do it a try.

Again same pornographic stuff. HD out, UH to USB, USB to Laptop, Win2k to HD and every thing back to the original place. The Win2k copy was a MSDN one, allowing to be uploaded to any media without any concern about original CD.

The upgrade was nice and easy; everything was right and no more tricky tricks. Native 2k IrDa, Video, USB and floppy drivers follow the path without any fuss, accomplished nice and easy at it should be. The only drawback was to change the port of the GPS card,

The original try and retry take me almost a week, weekend included, but that upgrade only two "two hours" evenings. Very much pleasant considering it was my first experience with a 2k “everything”.

The system speed is reliable but could be tuned. I simple should clean every thing, setup Win2k from zero and not at the top of 98. Some sites found say that I could help things out cutting some functions not needed and tuning some more aspects. It will be my next step. If every thing goes conform planed, and things points that way, next Saturday the Rio Maior caching-whatever-trip will be the field test. More news then.

4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 MAntunes // Mar 29, 2006 at 16:23

    Don´t forget the backups…


    PS: A “boy»s device” to sell.

  • 2 navegantes // Mar 29, 2006 at 16:43

    Isso é que é nivel!

    Grande trabalheira… esperemos que corresponda às expectativas!

  • 3 Jose Adonis // Mar 29, 2006 at 16:49

    MAntunes wrote:
    PS: A “boy»s device” to sell.

    Ando aqui a pensar em upgreidar o meu télélé para uma coisa de maior tamanho… Por quanto vendes essa "ferramenta" e qual é o preço em que fica para concorrentes???

  • 4 danieloliveira // Mar 30, 2006 at 13:29

    Mas voçês estão a falar do quê? Importam-se de traduzir?

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