Unoffical empeg BBS

Quick Links: Empeg FAQ | Software | RioCar.Org | Hijack | jEmplode | emphatic
Repairs: Repairs | Addons: Eutronix | Cases

Topic Options
#249917 - 19/02/2005 15:49 Lack of Central forum Activity
geeknerd
member

Registered: 24/09/2003
Posts: 148
I have noticed that there aren't many posts in the central forums any more.

Has everyone here moved on to a alternate way to play their mp3s? Did everyone go out and get an iPod?

Just curious.

Top
#249918 - 19/02/2005 23:26 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: geeknerd]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30531
Loc: Seattle, WA
I still use my Central every day. It's still the way I rip my CDs and play music to my dining room and hot tub (via Rio Receivers). I am using Mike Schrag's command-line Java utilities to keep it RID-tagged and keep its playlists synchronised with the playlists on my car player.

It's just that it's worked so well, there's nothing to report!
_________________________
Tony Fabris

Top
#249919 - 20/02/2005 13:43 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: geeknerd]
The Central Guy
enthusiast

Registered: 18/03/2002
Posts: 225
Loc: San Diego, California USA
I have also noticed that there isn't much activity on the Central forum. I use my units every day, and am currently involved in a large project using the Centrla.

Previously, I've built up a 120 GB hard drive that is about 90% full of my favorite CDs. I've decided to do a couple of things. First, on a newly built Central hard drive, I'm ripping the balance of my CD collection. Then I'm going to use jEmplode to export the all mp3s over to my computer...So I've been feeding the Central CD after CD lately and working with jEmnplode to fix up tags...

After reading some old threads about filenames when exporting, I have taken Tony's advice and downloaded the MP3 Tag Studio software. Haven't fired it up yet, but I will after I get through my cabinets and copy the balance of my CDs over to the Central...

I have a question or two about the Central from my CD ripping project, so I probably have an item or two to post....I'll do that and try to resurrect some activity into the forum.....

Thanks, Randy
_________________________
Happy owner of 2 Centrals, 2 Empegs Mk2a 160GB, 1 Empeg Mk2a 60 GB, a Rio Riot, 4 Rio Receivers, and two 1GB iPod Shuffles...

Top
#249920 - 20/02/2005 15:55 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: The Central Guy]
geeknerd
member

Registered: 24/09/2003
Posts: 148
I agree, my Central has been performing excellently. I'm surprised that anyone hasn't tried to bring it back... With today's computer prices, they could crank there out probably for around 200-500$. Further, it's a great platform. You could do so much more with it than what it does today.

Tony: What are these Java command line utilities that you speak of? Do you know where I can find them?

Randy: The newest version of JEmplode can do most things with the filenames while exporting, but it doesn't zero pad track numbers (e.g. "5" vs "05"). As far as I can tell, that part of the code is locked up in RMML code that isn't publicly released. You may have better success than the earlier threads indicate. I have been using "Tag&Rename" to do the zero padding.

It sounds like you are hitting the 120G barrier. I have been considering putting some effort into getting drives >120G to work. If anyone is interested in an effort to do this, I still have my dev environment set up on my central. 236$ for a 400G HDD. Mmmmm.

Check out these HDD prices off pricewatch.com:

$236 - EIDE 400GB
$224 - EIDE 320GB
$179 - EIDE 300GB
$114 - EIDE 250GB
$89 - EIDE 200GB
$78 - EIDE 180GB
$62 - EIDE 160GB
$57 - EIDE 120GB

Top
#249921 - 20/02/2005 16:39 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: geeknerd]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30531
Loc: Seattle, WA
Quote:
The newest version of JEmplode can do most things with the filenames while exporting, but it doesn't zero pad track numbers (e.g. "5" vs "05").

Um, yes it does, just fine. {tracknr:2} or {pos:2}

Quote:
What are these Java command line utilities that you speak of? Do you know where I can find them?

Thread here.
Utilities here.
_________________________
Tony Fabris

Top
#249922 - 20/02/2005 17:06 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: tfabris]
geeknerd
member

Registered: 24/09/2003
Posts: 148
Whoa, undocumented features in JEmplode! Thank you! That simplifies things greatly! Are there any others that you know of?

Top
#249923 - 20/02/2005 18:56 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: geeknerd]
The Central Guy
enthusiast

Registered: 18/03/2002
Posts: 225
Loc: San Diego, California USA
Yes, I did run into the 120 GB hard drive limitation. But, actually, the more I've filled up my 120 GB drive, the more unstable my Central (and Rio Receivers) have become. I actually think I've run into some sort of system or RAM issue now on the Central.

For example, during December I swapped out my 120 GB Central disk and replaced it with a 40GB drive that has all my Christmas CDs on it. The Christmas drive had about 8-10 GB of tunes on it. It was great, the performance was fast, it was fast to callup songs on the Rio Receiver, jEmplode was fast when I would select the Central and read in the database.

It reminded me how sluggish my Central had become with 90+ GB of tunes on it. I noticed after Christmas when I plugged my main HD back in that the Central had become sluggish, sometimes the Rio Receiver would lock up or hang, or not want to play music correctly. I tried different Rio Receivers, etc. All signs kinda pointed back to my Rio Central, and I thought it might be because it was so full of music that I was having trouble.

I've come to the conclusion that you can't really use all of the 120 GB hard drive on the Central and still get good performance...

For my new project of ripping ALL of my CDs on the Central and then copying them to my PC to get all of my MP3s in one place, I started by building a brand new 120 GB drive, but once I filled it to 30% then I fixed up the titles and copied all the music over to my PC. It took about 26-27 hours for that first batch, but everything worked and the file names came out just as I planned:

{Genre} - {Artist} - {Year} - {Source} - {Tracknr:2} - {Title}{ext}

So now I'm working on a second batch with a fresh 120GB drive and the new 1.10 Central software. When it gets partially filled, then I'll copy that HD over to my PC and keep going until I get all the songs. Then I'll have a few 120 GB drives that I can plug into my Centrals (all of my Centrals have removable drive bays).

My goal is to get my entire CD collection (approximately 3,000 CDs) ripped on the Central and then copied to one place on my PC. The Central does a great job of ripping, the titles just need some touchups afterwards...

So, anyways, I guess my comment would be that if you're going to look into getting a larger drive to work on the Central, then I think there are other issues to deal with as well.

And, of course, you're probably read my other Central postings here where I've outlined my efforts to get a larger HD to work. I've tried every different trick I could think of, but the Central flat out won't boot from anything larger than 120GB, no matter how it is set up.

From our previous thread, if I remember, the conclusion we reached is that the large HD support is not built into the boot firmware in the Central...And it won't boot with two hard drives either....What ideas did you have?

Thanks, Randy
_________________________
Happy owner of 2 Centrals, 2 Empegs Mk2a 160GB, 1 Empeg Mk2a 60 GB, a Rio Riot, 4 Rio Receivers, and two 1GB iPod Shuffles...

Top
#249924 - 20/02/2005 19:53 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: The Central Guy]
peter
carpal tunnel

Registered: 13/07/2000
Posts: 4138
Loc: Cambridge, England
Quote:
From our previous thread, if I remember, the conclusion we reached is that the large HD support is not built into the boot firmware in the Central...And it won't boot with two hard drives either....What ideas did you have?

Neither the boot kernel in the firmware, nor the second kernel on the disk, nor the kernel on the upgrade CD understands big disks (>128Gbyte). You could get the Central to work with a big disk, but only if you were a Linux geek: you'd need to plug the big disk into a Linux PC, partition and format it manually in the way the upgrade CD would, initialise the swap partition, copy the root filesystem from a standard Central disk, and replace the second kernel (it's somewhere in the root directory ISTR) with one you'd cross-compiled yourself from our sources but with the LBA48 patch too. This is not a project for the faint-hearted, but it's no more recherche than some of the stuff people do to their car-players.

Peter

Top
#249925 - 21/02/2005 15:51 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: peter]
geeknerd
member

Registered: 24/09/2003
Posts: 148
Cool. I was never sure if it would actually work because of the dual loading. It just so happens that I'm a linux geek. The steps you outline sound only slightly harder than a gentoo install.

It will be a little while before I try this out for myself, but if anyone wants the compiled kernel, I compiled one up last year.

Hmmm. I wonder what is causing the problem with 90+ G on the central. I only have ~60, but I haven't uploaded all my tunes yet. If it's a ram issue, that could be a problem, but with a slim kernel, we might recover some RAM...

Has anyone else seen the problem with 90+ G on the central?

Top
#249926 - 16/03/2005 21:00 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: geeknerd]
altman
carpal tunnel

Registered: 19/05/1999
Posts: 3449
Loc: Palo Alto, CA
There are pads for two more SDRAM chips on the Central board which will let you get to 32M - which will help a lot. You'll need a new kernel that looks for this memory though (mlord....? ).

We never tried this out, but it should work. In theory...

Hugo

Top
#249927 - 18/03/2005 12:48 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: altman]
geeknerd
member

Registered: 24/09/2003
Posts: 148
I'd pay someone to upgrade my Central with more RAM. I know there is someone who repairs empegs. Would he be willing to perform some RAM upgrades on centrals?

Also, it seems that the SDRAM controller would need to be upgraded. Is that something akin to BIOS on an intel board? Or is that something that is in the kernel? If a linux kernel change is all that is required, that should be fairly simple.

Here's a related thread...
http://empegbbs.com/ubbthreads/showflat....true#Post224130

Top
#249928 - 18/03/2005 18:55 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: geeknerd]
geeknerd
member

Registered: 24/09/2003
Posts: 148
I found some very interesting information in the empeg-car forum. Apparently, someone very skilled with a soldering iron was able to add ram to an empeg. There's also a "piggy-back memory upgrade" technique that I have seen references to. I think this means that it's possible to upgrade to 16*4 = 64.

Check out the thread and the picture...
http://empegbbs.com/ubbthreads/showflat....true#Post251045

Top
#249929 - 23/08/2005 14:28 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: geeknerd]
altman
carpal tunnel

Registered: 19/05/1999
Posts: 3449
Loc: Palo Alto, CA
Quote:
I'd pay someone to upgrade my Central with more RAM. I know there is someone who repairs empegs. Would he be willing to perform some RAM upgrades on centrals?

Also, it seems that the SDRAM controller would need to be upgraded. Is that something akin to BIOS on an intel board? Or is that something that is in the kernel? If a linux kernel change is all that is required, that should be fairly simple.

Here's a related thread...
http://empegbbs.com/ubbthreads/showflat....true#Post224130


You don't need to upgrade an SDRAM controller, the e000 section of the flash just needs a tweak. Not hard.

Hugo

Top
#249930 - 13/09/2005 23:50 Re: Lack of Central forum Activity [Re: altman]
geeknerd
member

Registered: 24/09/2003
Posts: 148
I saw this in the menuconfig for the empeg kernel. Could it be the answer, or is the change you mention also required? Check the screenshot... The help shows the following text:

CONFIG_CMDLINE:

On some architectures (EBSA110 and CATS), there is currently no way for the boot loader to pass arguments to the kernel. For these architectures, you should supply some command-line options at build time by entering them here. As a minimum, you should specify the memory size and the root device (e.g., mem=64M root=/dev/nfs).


Attachments
265078-memorysetting2.jpg (850 downloads)



Edited by geeknerd (13/09/2005 23:53)

Top