Android and Linux

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


I was in Best Buy today and noticed that they sell Pogoplugs for $50 so I picked one up. I believe it is the first generation without wifi, but I don't care about that, I prefer using network cable when available over wifi anyway. The downside to Pogoplugs is that they have very little space available on them, but you can install Linux on an external hard drive plugged into them via USB. I didn't have an external drive, per se. I have a NAS network drive, and that may work, but I didn't have a USB cord to attach it, so I installed Linux on a USB stick for the time being.

Using this guide, it only took a few minutes to have a very minimalistic version of Debian running on it, and after installing the gcc compiler and other tools, I was able to install Heyu. Then I plugged my CM11A X10 controller into the Pogoplug and was a little surprised that the darn thing actually worked. Awesome!

The NAS drive is what I use to store videos for streaming to the Roku. I tried to install the server program on the Pogoplug using the USB stick just to see if it would work, but python threw socket errors for some reason. I'm going to investigate whether I can use the NAS with the Pogoplug. If not, I'll probably get an external drive and use it to serve videos, control the home automation, and various other things I have a computer doing now. I'm not entirely certain I want to turn over everything to a little box like this, but I want to do it to see for myself that it can be done, then change back to the computer if I prefer it.

I think it's pretty amazing that, for $50, you can get a computer the size of a book that can do all this. Then again, the Raspberry is only going to be $25, so maybe I got ripped off!