Android 4.2.2 on PandaBoard using Linaro 13.06 binaries


Those who have been reading this blog may remember that I run Linux in a VirtualBox VM, and the host OS is Windows 8. I have tried recent Linaro binaries on PandaBoard by writing the image file (pandaboard.img.bz2) to an SD Card using Win32DiskImager. It has not worked well before, I realize now, due to lack of graphics drivers.

To get the graphics drivers on to the system partition requires that I mount the SD Card and run a shell script from my Linux VM. The problem being, getting the VM to see the internal SD Card reader of my laptop. Problem solved, the SD Card reader is a USB device and can be mounted by VirtualBox, once you install a proprietary extension and enable USB 2.0 in the VM settings.

How to install

Download Linaro 13.06. The instructions to prepare the SD card are under Binary Image Installation. I had some difficulty with disabling automount using dconf, but found Ubuntu’s Mount/USB instructions helpful.

I am now a happy user of Android 4.2.2 on the PandaBoard!

How does it run?

Here’s a list of positive observations:

  1. Display performance is flawless.
  2. WiFi works. Ethernet works after switching to Ethernet configuration eth0 under Settings.
  3. Browser works well. YouTube videos play all right. I haven’t tried any HD video yet.
  4. DVI and HDMI display ports work.
  5. Audio from the stereo output jack works.

Some negative observations:

  1. Bluetooth does not work.
  2. Often, the display is put to sleep and does not wake up. Switching from DVI to HDMI, or vice-versa, often wakes it up. HDMI audio does not work.
  3. No Google Play store, for obvious reasons.
  4. External USB webcam does not work.
  5. ADB interface stops working at around the time display is put to sleep.
  6. Lots of test apps installed, so you are reminded it is a development build.

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