HP T5000 As A Network Stereo

I picked up a HP T5000 thin client for $25 (at a swap-meet), which is a good price, even better than eBay. Firstly it came with no power supply, luckily I could use the same PSU that I had purchased for the EVO T20 with no modifications.

Specifications:

CPU: VIA 800mhz x86 compatible processor, RAM: 128-512MB, although I have heard of 2GB being used, Expansion: 2.5inch IDE, 4x USB 2.0, 1x serial and 1x parallel, 1x PCI slot.

Now that it powers up, we can check out the BIOS to see what options are available. You can boot from either USB, Network, or IDE (flash card). I dont have a suitable IDE cable, USB booting is good, although like most of the PC’s I use network booting from the LinuxMCE core. It’s got an on-board sound card so it’ll be good for a network controlled stereo (just add external speakers).

The unit purchased had 128MB of RAM and it was replace with a 256MB sodimm, more RAM will always give better results.

Network Booting the HP T5000

Set the thinclient to PXE boot and create the MD in the Admin interface. Once the PXE boot has been assigned an IP and boot file from the TFTPD daemon, it’s boots and tries to load the AVWizard. The video card scripts pick it up as an ATI card but it continuously has segmentation faults crashes and restarts the AVWizard.

After much looking around and doing a dpkg-reconfigure on the X-server, the following xorg.conf works: (You may have to change / etc/X11/xorg.conf.pluto.avwizard aswell).

Section “ServerLayout”
Identifier     “X.org Configured”
Screen      0  “Screen0” 0 0
InputDevice    “Mouse0” “CorePointer”
InputDevice    “Keyboard0” “CoreKeyboard”
EndSection
Section “Files”
ModulePath   “/usr/lib/xorg/modules”
FontPath     “/usr/share/fonts/X11/misc”
FontPath     “/usr/share/fonts/X11/cyrillic”
FontPath     “/usr/share/fonts/X11/100dpi/:unscaled”
FontPath     “/usr/share/fonts/X11/75dpi/:unscaled”
FontPath     “/usr/share/fonts/X11/Type1”
FontPath     “/usr/share/fonts/X11/100dpi”
FontPath     “/usr/share/fonts/X11/75dpi”
FontPath     “/var/lib/defoma/x-ttcidfont-conf.d/dirs/TrueType”
EndSection
Section “Module”
Load    “dri”
Load    “xtrap”
Load    “extmod”
Load    “glx”
Load    “record”
Load    “dbe”
Load    “speedo”
Load    “type1”
Load    “int10”
Load    “v4l”
EndSection
Section “InputDevice”
Identifier  “Keyboard0”
Driver      “kbd”
EndSection
Section “InputDevice”
Identifier  “Mouse0”
Driver      “mouse”
Option      “Protocol” “auto”
Option      “Device” “/dev/input/mice”
Option      “ZAxisMapping” “4 5 6 7”
EndSection
Section “Monitor”
#DisplaySize      470   300     # mm
Identifier   “Monitor0”
VendorName   “ACI”
ModelName    “MW221”
Option      “DPMS”
HorizSync       20-500
VertRefresh     59-61
EndSection
Section “Device”
Identifier  “Card0”
Driver      “mach64”
VendorName  “ATI Technologies Inc”
BoardName   “Rage XL”
BusID       “PCI:0:13:0”
Option “XvmcUsesTextures” “true”
Option “renderAccel” “true”
Option “NoDDCValue”
Option “UseEDID” “true”
Option “ExactModeTimingsDVI” “true”
Option “NoLogo” “true”
Option “NoBandWidthTest” “true”
Option “ModeValidation” “NoDFPNativeResolutionCheck, NoEdidMaxPClkCheck, NoMaxPClkCheck, AllowInterlacedModes, AllowNon60HzDFPModes, NoEdidModes”
Option “DynamicTwinView” “false”
Option “UseEvents” “true”
Option          “ConnectedMonitor” “CRT”
EndSection
Section “Screen”
Identifier “Screen0”
Device     “Card0”
Monitor    “Monitor0”
Option “XvmcUsesTextures” “true”
Option “renderAccel” “true”
Option “NoDDCValue”
Option “UseEDID” “true”
Option “ExactModeTimingsDVI” “true”
Option “NoLogo” “true”
Option “NoBandWidthTest” “true”
Option “ModeValidation” “NoDFPNativeResolutionCheck, NoEdidMaxPClkCheck, NoMaxPClkCheck, AllowInterlacedModes,AllowNon60HzDFPModes, NoEdidModes”
Option “NoBandWidthTest” “true”
Option “ModeValidation” “NoDFPNativeResolutionCheck, NoEdidMaxPClkCheck, NoMaxPClkCheck, AllowInterlacedModes, AllowNon60HzDFPModes, NoEdidModes”
Option “DynamicTwinView” “false”
Option “UseEvents” “true”
Option  “TVStandard”    “800×600”
EndSection
Section “Extensions”
Option “Composite” “false”
Option “RENDER” “true”
EndSection
 
Section “ServerFlags”
Option “AutoAddDevices” “False”
EndSection
 

 

Every time I tried to specify the resolution it segfaulted again. You’ll also note the driver used it mach64 not ATI. Now it boots and AVWizard is completed, time for the Media/Home Wizards, they are also completed, although the video and audio playback during the wizards is choppy although manageable.

Reboot and wait for the start up to finish. The orbiter is displayed in the top left, and doesn’t fill the screen because no default resolution is specified in the xorg.conf. This doesn’t matter because it’s going to be headless PC controlled using another orbiter.

Playback: Audio is fine once the first song enters the play list, after that there is about 2 seconds delay when selecting a different song. Video on the other had is OK for low res files only, which is fine because there will be no monitor connected.

Was it worth the effort/time/money? Yes, for a headless PC that integrates seamlessly with the other media directors, it’s OK but not perfect, I did notice when streaming music to it and another MD nearby it was noticeably slower. Does it perform well as a network stereo? Yes, it was very useful during a party, just had to hook up an old AMP and speakers.

With the used of a 2.5inch IDE cable and it’s PCI slot, it could be be used for s much more!

One thought on “HP T5000 As A Network Stereo

  1. Pingback: Network Audio from Thinclient « modlog.net

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