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Compact Flash VGA Cards and Linux



CF-XGA by I-O DATA

With that device which fits into the CF-slot, it is possible to mirror the screen of the Zaurus Linux PDA to an external monitor or beamer. It also comes with a remote control. Unfortunately, it is not supported by the OS as such. You need some extra application to make it work (no driver). On the SL-C7x0 series, the application "Presentation" makes use of the card. Users of older Zaurii can perhaps download it somewhere on Sharp's webpages in Japan. There is also a small program which can mirror the whole display onto the external screen.

Presentation

Well, it works in a way. Just plug in the CF-card and load an image into the application and it will be displayed on the external monitor when the key "OK" is hit. The automatic update mechanism of the program is buggy, it is always needed to update the external display manually by hitting "OK", despite a dialog box which randomly pops up and maunders about "Outputting to card...". There are also several other bugs in the program: The application allows you to draw over the original image. But on the external display, only drawings which are within the boundaries of the size of the image are seen. Take an icon, for instance, and load it into the "Presentation". Now draw a circle around the icon and update the external display (No, pressing the button "Display" in the application does not work that way). Ok, what do you see apart from the icon? Nothing! Cross out the icon and update again. Now a cross is to be seen on the icon, but only that part that is within the boundaries of the size of the icon. Another bug is, that popping up dialog boxes (or maximized windows) destroys the drawings under them, except for the last stroke. Yes, even the occasional dialog with "Outputting to card..." destroys the drawing.

The infrared remote control works fine, the presentation can be navigated by it. But remember that it works with infrared, so the control has to be pointed towards the Zaurus. And do not try to activate IrDA on the Zaurus in some way and make sure that the "Beam" function is disabled. The remote control does not use IrDA, it uses some other protocol on top of IR.

cfxgamirror

This little utility copies the whole screen of the Zaurus to the external monitor. So if your application does not support graphics adapters in the CF-slot, like most do, use this program. Well, the only reference to this program that was found in the web is here , but you can also download a tarball, including sources and ARM-compiled binary. The program in the tarball has one option which allows you to set a video mode to use for the external display, so typing ./cfxgamirror 3 as root (!) copies the VGA screen to the external monitor in mode SVGA (the inly one my ancient monitor supports). No, there is no higher resolution than VGA, there are fat black borders around the shown screen. The external monitor is updated once a second which makes it a little slow, but you can fiddle with the sources if you like.

Driver for OpenZaurus

Please see the discussion about using the memory_cs PCMCIA-CS module at the Openzaurus-users mailing list 01/2004.

Credits

  • Sebastian Henschel







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© Werner Heuser 1997-2013 · http://tuxmobil.org/cf_vga.html · last change Mon Nov 12 2007