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Getting Debian running on an EfikaMX Smartbook


I recently purchased an EfikaMX Smartbook, with the aim of running Debian
on it.

However, now that I've actually got it on my desk, I can't seem to find any
straightforward instructions on how to get Debian up and running.

I have read this page http://wiki.debian.org/EfikaMX which contains a lot
of different instructions, some of which appear to be pertinent to the
Smarttop, and some to the Smartbook. It is not obvious to me if these
devices are identical for the purposes of the kernel/rootfs/X needed to run
on them.

I've also found this list of images on Genesi's site:


There is a Debian armhf image there, which I have unpacked and dd'd to a
brand new 16GB SD card (it would help to say next to the image how big a
card it's formatted for!), stuck the card in the slot (the one on the left
side of the body, not the uSD one behind the battery, again no instructions
I can find anywhere on which to use), and powered on.

It appears that the system may have booted (or tried to boot) from the SD
card, I get three flashes of the CAPS LED, then nothing.

Now, there is a fairly active Debian forum on the Genesi site, and an
active thread about the exact armhf image I downloaded here: http://www.powerdeveloper.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=2196

Reading that it seems obvious that *some* people are running Debian armhf
on an Efika... again, Smarttop, or Smartbook... dunno.

There are also armhf Debian Installer images, this time labeled as for the
Smarttop *and* Smartbook, advertised here: http://www.powerdeveloper.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=2212

However, these are more or less useless to me as they appear to not come
with video drivers (I'm guessing that means no kernel framebuffer drivers),
and requires access to a serial console, which requires a dongle I don't
have and couldn't get as the Genesi Europe shop says it's out of stock.

Could anyone who actually has Debian running on the SmartBook please advise
how to proceed? Or have I just purchased myself an expensive paperweight?


Martin Lucina
http://lucina.net/ (interwebs/blogs/rants/consulting)
martin@lucina.net  (smtp/xmpp/jabber/gtalk)
@matolucina        (twitter)

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