Neoware CA10: Linux 





As with all Neoware thin clients there is no problem running various Linux distributions.

I've run Puppy 5.2 and DSL 4.4.10 from Compact Flash cards attached to the 44-pin IDE interface.

Setting the boot device to USB-HDD in the BIOS let me boot Tiny Core 3.6 from a pen drive.

Tiny Core 4.0 also runs quite happily. It takes ~35 seconds from the boot prompt to the Desktop screen.

Heavyweight Linux

I did try out ubuntu 10.04 and Lubuntu 11.10 with out any real success. (512KB of RAM fitted - just tried booting the standard distributions).

In June 2012 I received an email from Szabolcs in Hungary:

"Finally I successfully installed ubuntu server 12.04 on the CA10. My main problem was a HDD partitioning issue, but let me also recommend you one useful link:

Since the default installation images of ubuntu starting with 12.04 have dropped the support for non-PAE architectures it won't successfully install to many of the VIA C3 based (i586) systems, like neoware and HP thin clients.

The link was easy to find and may be useful for other beginners like me to avoid installation problems with the ubuntu family on Thin Client hardware."

Note: Physical Address Extension (PAE) is a feature to allow (32-bit) x86 processors to access a physical address space larger than 4 gigabytes. It was first implemented in the Intel Pentium Pro in 1995. I guess manufacturers of processors targeted on embedded systems saw little point in adding this feature which is more suited to high-end desktop and server systems.

If you have some flavour of Linux running on your target system you can run "grep pae /proc/cpuinfo" to find out whether or not your CPU supports PAE. An empty return shows it doesn't support PAE.


Any comments? email me. Added July 2010    Last update June 2012