Edit: Unfortunately, the images originally included in this post are gone, because of hosting problems in late 2009. My apologies.
I updated the software on my OLPC yesterday, and by some curious circumstance found myself on this page, installing Debian as an additional software version.
It was partly because the newest versions of Sugar, the XO’s default operating system, come as stripped down as you can get — the basic installation leaves out all the packages, and you install the ones you want manually. I kind of like that, since some of the default G1G1 packages were a bit esoteric. I’m all for building up from nothing, so installing nothing and adding on is ideal to me.
And there’s quite a bit more space left on the NAND without the excess packages, I decided to try that Debian-as-upgrade trick, and it worked pretty well for me.
The script does all the hard work, although I did have to mangle the
/etc/apt/sources.list to find the software I wanted. And while the etch repos were acceptable, I ended up adding testing and unstable, just to get a few software versions I wanted (most notably, Kazehakase).
In the end, my repo list looked like this.
# deb http://debian.lcs.mit.edu/debian unstable main deb ftp://ftp.debian.org/debian unstable main contrib non-free deb ftp://ftp.jp.debian.org/debian unstable main contrib non-free deb ftp://ftp2.jp.debian.org/debian unstable main contrib non-free deb http://security.debian.org testing/updates main contrib non-free # deb http://www.debian-multimedia.org unstable main # deb http://ftp.debian-unofficial.org/debian unstable main contrib non-free restricted deb http://layer-acht.org/debian etch olpc xorg
The layer-acht repo holds backported drivers for the video system — I couldn’t get a graphical environment without them. There’s more about that here, on the Ubuntu side of the house.
Overall, performance is … acceptable. Debian does a good job keeping the environment light and fluffy, but I think I prefer my Arch USB system. I know, XFCE isn’t ideal really, and I could install the same software here as I have in Arch for a proper comparison, but XFCE seems so much more … huggy-bunny-cute than my pretend Windows 2000 IceWM setup.
Anyways. This will keep me entertained for a little while.