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Old 15-05-2019, 03:15   #106
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

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Graphic progs like opencpn need a graphical interface so not possible to run them with bog standard SSH into a machine. A VNC server works though so get oto the desktop over wifi from any machine, Openplotter has it preinstalled so works on first boot. OK for most stuff but a bit slow to run opencpn. Signalk is webpage based so anything which can use a web page can get on there.

OK, so what's the most elegant and lightest GUI for Linux, which will make OpenCPN work?
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Old 15-05-2019, 03:27   #107
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

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OK, so what's the most elegant and lightest GUI for Linux, which will make OpenCPN work?
Marinux might be worth a play, you should be able to boot from a pendrive just to check it out -
https://marinux.tuxfamily.org/
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Old 15-05-2019, 03:27   #108
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Ideal Boat Computer?

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OK, so what's the most elegant and lightest GUI for Linux, which will make OpenCPN work?


looks like XFCE will be sufficient, it's a light weight "desktop environment"
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Old 15-05-2019, 04:45   #109
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

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OK, so what's the most elegant and lightest GUI for Linux, which will make OpenCPN work?
Why not just buy a Raspberry Pie 3 and follow the documentation, https://opencpn.org/wiki/dokuwiki/do...pberrypi_rpi2? Least money lost if it doesn't work out.

This said I bet a Guiness that you'll go back to Windows soon. (Or you will revisit "playing with computers is not what I want to do on the boat"... ;-))

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Here is one such result: https://www.zdnet.com/article/the-pe...ux-vs-windows/ ...
I keep a stock Win 10 install, so the boot time is obscene. But worse is the time required to download both system updates and app updates. The games are continuously updated with new advertising (video clips???), so in spite of my desire to keep things stock I am going to have to remove them, one way or the other. Still, other updates probably run at a rate of 100-200MB downloads per week. EEEK! Linux updates are a fraction of that size. And then there is the issue of Windows "phoning home" to Redmond with tracking data. Initially Win 10 required connecting to M$ every month or it would drop down to a limited capability - a horrible idea that was quickly abandoned. Still the point is that M$ looks at Win 10 as an ongoing source of revenue, mostly through ads, and if that means consuming your computer's resources so be it.
The link is 13 years old (January 26, 2006, from znet.com, iik), do you think it will still apply? -- If I were you, I'd configure my Windows a bit better such that you don't experience obscene boot times, video ads and restrict updates (maybe not possible with Home, not sure). It doesn't need to happen (but maybe with a M$ evil attitude one prefers suffering...?)

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Originally Posted by Reefmagnet View Post
One of the more obscure issues with Windows is it's constant access to the hard drive.
Why use a hard disk? A SSD wouldn't have any moving parts.

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There are more powerful ARM based systems than the Raspberry Pi.
A nice alternative for a real computer is the rockpro64 from pine64,
6 cores, GPU and up to 4 GiB memory.

My laptop is a pine64, a bit smaller than rockpro64, but offer web and mail.
A nice alternative onboard and on travel.
Didn't know these, thank you for the mention! A RockPro64 needs between 4.2 - 8.5 W, impressive. A fitlet2 uses about 5 - 15 W and a Rpi around 6 W . -- Btw, you have some very interesting blog articles, great read!!

(links: https://forum.pine64.org/showthread.php?tid=6343, https://www.tinygreenpc.com/fanless-...l-apollo-lake/, https://raspberrypi.stackexchange.co...at-dissipation)
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Old 15-05-2019, 05:20   #110
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

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Originally Posted by blu3534 View Post
Why not just buy a Raspberry Pie 3 and follow the documentation, https://opencpn.org/wiki/dokuwiki/do...pberrypi_rpi2? Least money lost if it doesn't work out.

This said I bet a Guiness that you'll go back to Windows soon. (Or you will revisit "playing with computers is not what I want to do on the boat"... ;-))
Really don't understand this , which part of openplotter meant so much playing around? What version are you on? It works out of the box, not like windows where there might be an afternoon or 3 spend downloading the progs and setting up all the signal paths.
If there have been set up issues the developers of openplotter would be please to find out.
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Old 15-05-2019, 05:32   #111
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

Have a look at this one:



https://www.ebay.com/itm/XCY-Mini-PC...40ghLqIUUZz6eA

Perfect for OpenCPN.



Regards,



-Richard
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Old 15-05-2019, 06:13   #112
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

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Have a look at this one:



https://www.ebay.com/itm/XCY-Mini-PC...40ghLqIUUZz6eA

Perfect for OpenCPN.



Regards,



-Richard

I am hoping that I won't need a Core (i3, i5, i7) processor -- these use a lot more power than the Gemini Lake processors (Celeron, Pentium Silver).
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Old 15-05-2019, 13:52   #113
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

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Careful with such ebay stores, at the bottom is written:

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About OS installation
1) Default install activated cracked version Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10 English for free experience, If you need to pre-installed Windows with other languages and other OS like Linux, Ubuntu, Pfsense, etc, please leave a message.
2) Licensend Windows OS need add extra 50.00USD/unit.
3) Seller makes no compensation for cracked system errors, buyer can re-install OS to our mini PC and installation steps same as the traditional desktop PC.
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Old 15-05-2019, 15:04   #114
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

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Sure, but it can't be secured in a way that stuff can't fly onto it. Plus, I need the desk space for notes, pilot books, radar plotting sheets, and paper charts. I use a large 4k monitor, not a laptop screen. No laptop for me for this purpose.


A minicomputer is right for my use case. The nav table is free for chart work, notes and books, the computer is out of the way, the cables are neatly routed and out of sight.


I am BTW not the only genius to have figured this out. Way back in 2008 when I was first boat shopping, the Oyster 485 I had a contract on and almost bought, came with a minicomputer installed behind the nav table just like mine is now, with a monitor fixed on the instrument panel. Minicomputers were quite rare at the time -- I think this one was a Mac Mini or something like that. I was impressed with this solution and I'm not quite sure why it took me so long to implement it myself.
I’ve actually learned something new on this thread, I didn’t know about the micro computers until having read the thread then noticed that all the desktop computers in the hospitals where I work are the little 8x8x2 inch models... I thought they were modems.

I’m considering getting one to run Nobeltec software if there’s one out there that will meet the specs.

Thanks
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Old 15-05-2019, 15:08   #115
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

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Originally Posted by Kenomac View Post
I’ve actually learned something new on this thread, I didn’t know about the micro computers until having read the thread then noticed that all the desktop computers in the hospitals where I work are the little 8x8x2 inch models... I thought they were modems.

I’m considering getting one to run Nobeltec software if there’s one out there that will meet the specs.

Thanks

You can buy minicomputers with any specs whatsoever, up to 8th gen Core i7 and 16g of RAM and terabytes of SSD and/or hard drives. To start with, Intel NUC and Gigabyte Bric. But the tradeoff is power vs. power consumption.



I am hoping that for a dedicated nav computer, Core level power is not needed.
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Old 15-05-2019, 15:25   #116
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

Solution 1: use a Celeron like


https://www.ebay.com/itm/Mini-PC-HTP...yz5:rk:22:pf:0


this reduces power a little compared to an i5, but also makes the PC slower.



Solution 2: Use a Raspberry, but then you are a bit limited on software and speed. If you just run OpenCPN than the Raspberry is fine, but is there other software you need (as a liveaboard ?). For me the use of a windows based system makes more sense.


Solution 3: increase your battery bank and fit another solar panel. Energy availability may be a question of boat size. I know lots of people out there who run washing machines, air condition and other power consuming stuff, so then the difference between Celeron and i5 should not be of concern.


Solution 4: Contemplate your PC use. Do you want the PC to run 24/7? Sure, if you go coastal in dangerous areas, the plotter (software) should be running, but if you go bluewater, get a fix once per wake and a weather report once a day..... If you are in a slip there will be shorepower, if you are at anchor, well - you will have to provide enough juice.



I believe the power consumption of a micro-PC and small monitor is not bigger compared to a notebook. It is not a problem to find micro PCs on the market, it is a way bigger problem to find a computer screen for indoor (12V or 19V with upconverter) or even the cockpit (chinese companies sell those with IP67). 25% tax ??


The idea of the board PC is to get the notebook away from the chart table. A mini PC is easily installable behind panels and a monitor may be mounted on the wall, freeing the chart table an leaving behind just the keyboard (with trackpad). A second monitor installed in the cockpit with touchscreen would be perfect for using OpenCPN.



-Richard


P.S.: I would never ever trust a company with an illegally cracked copy of the OS. Remove that crap and install a licensed original from trustworthy origin. And if you don´t want to pay for windows, there are ways to upgrade from an older licensed version for little money or even free of charge! Or just use Linux.
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Old 15-05-2019, 23:40   #117
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

If you are going to use Intel then you have the freedom of choosing Linux distributions and desktops. XFCE is an admirably light desktop, available with Linux Mint XFCE or Xubuntu.

If you are planning on using a Pi then you will be more limited, to distributions that will support it out of the box. For the Odroid N-2 the preferred Linux is Ubuntu with a Mate desktop (they also have an Ubuntu minimal distribution for the CLI lovers, and Armbian which is another Linux distro). Mate was designed to look like the old Gnome 2 desktop but work with modern Gnome 3 underpinnings, because there was a lot of resistance to the Gnome 3 desktop. It is fairy light and easy to use. There is an image you can download and write to the SD card, then you would be up and running. For OCPN you would add the repository to the software sources then download and install - it is easy and instructions are on the download page. Most Linux things of interest are available for Ubuntu (and its derivatives Mint and Elementary) so this is a good way to go. Since the N-2 is new they are still getting things settled so it is a bit less stable than Intel-based distributions for now. I would go for it but not for everyone.

Video review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=dylc0GjeyM8

This intro article covers a lot of info, including benchmarks: https://magazine.odroid.com/article/...oard-computer/

Greg
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Old 16-05-2019, 03:29   #118
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
You can buy minicomputers with any specs whatsoever, up to 8th gen Core i7 and 16g of RAM and terabytes of SSD and/or hard drives. To start with, Intel NUC and Gigabyte Bric. But the tradeoff is power vs. power consumption.



I am hoping that for a dedicated nav computer, Core level power is not needed.

Fapple also make mini-computers, in fact I think they pioneered them (the "Mac Mini"), for those who swing that way. Not sure what the usability and power consumption characteristics are for this use case, however.
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Old 16-05-2019, 04:53   #119
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

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If you are planning on using a Pi then you will be more limited, to distributions that will support it out of the box. For the Odroid N-2 the preferred Linux is Ubuntu with a Mate desktop

For what it's worth, Ubuntu 18.04.2 with the Mate desktop is also available for the Pi: https://ubuntu-mate.org/raspberry-pi/



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Old 16-05-2019, 07:30   #120
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Re: Ideal Boat Computer?

I use a FIT PC2 with windows 7. The advantage of these fanless mini boxes are huge.
6-8watts, nearly nothing and plugged straight into a 12v source.

Try tapping on your laptop in a storm with water running down your sleeves!

I would never use anything else.
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