Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (2483 mails)

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Re: [opensuse] OpenSUSE 11.1 on PS3
  • From: Stefan Assmann <sassmann@xxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 19 Jan 2009 11:42:07 +0100
  • Message-id: <497458FF.8040206@xxxxxxx>
John Lange wrote:
[.. snip general comments about Linux on the PS3 ..]

I've been playing with Linux on the PS3 for some time and I think I can
echo the general comments in this thread... It's pretty underwhelming.

Thanks for testing and giving feedback. It's really appreciated.


OpenSUSE 11.1 actually installs quite nicely on it with only the
following problems:


- It's very slow. The OpenSUSE gnome desktop is BLOATED and doesn't even
come close to fitting in RAM. This means you hit swap _constantly_ and
with the PS3's lack-luster hard drive it's dog slow. Specifically things
like beagle run on first boot and make it completely unusable.

- For some reason, OpenSUSE 11.1 defaulted to using the PS3 Wifi adapter
instead of the on-board NIC. Easily fixed in Yast but strange.

YaST should prefer ethernet over wifi if there's a cable connected. If
that's not the case feel free to open a bug for it.


- The PS3 does not have the new ps3vram device which allows the system
to make use of the unused RAM from the video device. Apparently using
this for swap makes the system much better but I have not been able to
test it yet.

Sorry, you are mistaken. The ps3vram is used by default in 11.1
and you can check that it works by looking at /proc/swaps. You'll see an
entry with /dev/mtdblock0.


- There is no access to the video hardware so the frame buffer is all
you get and it's even slower than the worst frame buffer I've ever used
before. The best thing to do here is to go with a smaller desktop but
it's a trade off. You have to pick from the preset sizes the PS3 (and
your TV) supports and if you go to the smallest one it effectively
breaks the desktop (the menu and windows all draw off the screen).

- Almost none of the OpenSUSE repositories seem to support PPC. So if
your intended use is MPlayer, or sldmame (arcade emulator) you're forced
to compile everything from source but even then your likely to be
missing things you need. And compiling from source is painfully slow
despite the multi-core cell processor because of the aforementioned swap
issue.

BuildService for PowerPC is up at powerpc.opensuse.org. :)

I did manage to get sldmame running under 11.0 and I even got the PS3
controller (attached with USB, not bluetooth) working with some of the
games. Now that I have 11.1 installed I'll give it another attempt.

It would be oh so nice if the OpenSUSE build service supported PPC.
Can't PPC be emulated using Xen or VirtualBox?

By the way, the closest thing to a Linux PS3 mailing list is:

https://ozlabs.org/mailman/listinfo/cbe-oss-dev

It's really for PS3 kernel developers so it's pretty technical and
nobody there runs SUSE so far as I can tell.

I think there should be an OpenSUSE-PS3 list. That would be a great
idea. Who do we talk to?

PS3 is PowerPC based, so please try opensuse-ppc@xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Stefan

--
Stefan Assmann | SUSE LINUX Products GmbH
Software Engineer | Maxfeldstr. 5, D-90409 Nuernberg
Mail: sassmann@xxxxxxx | GF: Markus Rex, HRB 16746 (AG Nuernberg)

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