Install Devuan/Debian Linux on the Jornada 7xx

A guide for installing Devuan/Debian Linux on the Jornada 7xx - I recommend Devuan because it uses less system ressources!

If you need to prepare a CF card with debootstrap (only for advanced users), you can find a short guide here: Install Devuan for the Jornada 7xx with debootstrap

What you need:

Prepare the CF card

We need 3 partitions on the CF card, one FAT partition for Windows CE to store the bootloader and kernel, one ext4 partition for Linux and one partition for swap.

To partition your CF card stick it in your CF card reader and connect it via a usb adapter to the Linux machine. Unmount your CF card before you begin!

Now we make sure its there, type at the linux bash:

sudo fdisk -l

This will list all partitions, even devices that are not mounted. YOU MUST NOW WRITE DOWN THE DEVICE NAME that is shown, usually this will be a name like /dev/sdc although it may be sda, sdb or sdd or so on. The list will show the partitions on the device, so if you have 3 partitions on the device it shows something like /dev/sdc1 /dev/sdc2 /dev/sdc3 Make sure you have the right device

Now we know that the device is there, lets partition it by typing

sudo cfdisk /dev/sdc

REPLACE the sdc with your drive and make sure its the correct one or you may lose data or your operating system now if there are any partitions already on the device then delete them now by using the up and down arrow to choose the partition then use the left and right arrows to choose „DELETE“

  • To create the needed partitions choose „New“ using the left and right arrows.
  • Now Choose „Primary“
  • Then for the size type in 20M
  • then choose „Beginning“

Now use the down arrow to choose FREE SPACE

  • Again move over to „New“
  • choose „Primary“
  • for the size now we want to type in the total amount it shows MINUS 128 MB
  • then choose „Beginning“

Again go down to FREE SPACE ( which should be now 128 MB left )

  • Choose „New“
  • Choose „Primary“
  • the size should be 128 MB so hit enter
  • and Hit Beginning again

Now the partitions are almost done

Move to the first partition sdc1 ( 10 MB ) and use the left and right arrows to choose „Type“ hit enter once then enter 04 then press enter. This changes the partition type to a FAT 16 partition.

Now we move down to the second partition sdc2 and choose type then hit enter now type 83 then press Enter. It should have already been this type but we do it here just to make sure it should be type linux.

Now move to partition 3 sdc3 and choose type again then press enter and type in 82 now press Enter The third partition should now be type „linux swap“

We need to move back up to partition 1, sdc1, move to the choice „Bootable“ and press Enter this partition should now be marked as bootable now navigate to „Write“ type yes and press Enter

Your partition table should now look like this (there may different values, depending on the name of your /dev/sd* and size of the CF card):

Partitioning is done, use the left or right arrow to navigate to „Quit“ You should be back at the shell again and no longer in the CFDISK utility.

Unmount your CF card before you go to the next step!

We have to format the new created partitions, using these commands:

sudo mkfs.vfat /dev/sdc1
sudo mkfs.ext4 /dev/sdc2
sudo mkswap /dev/sdc3

Copy the bootloader and kernel to the first CF card partition (/dev/sdc1) (visible in Windows CE)

Copy the linexec.exe, PARAMS.txt and zImage to the first (FAT) partition of the CF card (/dev/sdc1).

You have to mount your CF card partitions! For example:

sudo mkdir /mnt/cf1
sudo mount /dev/sdc1 /mnt/cf1

Remeber to set the correct amount of RAM that your Jornada has in the PARAMS.txt

For 32MB RAM:

\Storage Card\zimage
\Storage Card\
root=/dev/hda2 mem=32m rootdelay=5

For 64MB RAM:

\Storage Card\zimage
\Storage Card\
root=/dev/hda2 mem=64m rootdelay=5

For 128MB RAM you have to use a different bootloader and PARAMS.txt: Jornada 720 Memory Upgrade

Extract the rootfs to the second CF card partition (/dev/sdc2)

It is time to extract the root filesystem to the second partition of your CF card.

You have to mount your CF card partitions! For example:

sudo mkdir /mnt/cf2
sudo mount /dev/sdc2 /mnt/cf2

Extract the rootfs.tar.bz2 to /dev/sdc2 (as example mounted to /mnt/cf2)

sudo tar -xvjpSf ./rootfs.tar.bz2 -C /mnt/cf2


Now you can insert the CF card into your Jornada, boot it up and start jlinexec.exe from your cf card!

Notes about using the fresh installed system

Username: user
Password: u$er

root password: r00t

My rootfs includes a few pre installed packages: ssh, fluxbox, apmd, wireless-tools, netsurf, lynx, ftp, hostap-utils, xinput, pcmanfm, wpasupplicant, leafpad, xinput-calibrator.

There are 2 virtual consoles, you can switch with Alt+Internet Explorer key(F1) and Alt+Mail key(F2)

You can start the X server / fluxbox with


Notes about fluxbox: I forgot to edit the keys file in the directory ~/.fluxbox

For example with vi:

vi ~/.fluxbox/keys

The first 3 config lines have to be edited like this:

# click on the desktop to get menus
OnDesktop Mouse1 :HideMenus
OnDesktop Mouse2 :WorkspaceMenu
OnDesktop Mod1 Mouse1 :RootMenu

Then you can open the RootMenu with Alt + Tap on the screen! And let it disappear with a single tap on the screen somewhere else.

Mod1 is the key Alt on your keyboard. You can open the console (xterm) with Alt+F1 (which is the Internet Explorer button) and fbrun (like the „run“ window in the Windows world) with Alt+F2 (the mail button).

You can also use Alt + Click and hold on the screen to grab and move a window. So you can access the maximise button for the application being displayed.

Strg+Alt+del quits fluxbox and brings you back to the shell.

right click I currently try to get a tool working that emulates a right click. →

You can display the battery status with


You can adjust display brightness and contrast with a value between 0 and 255

echo 255 > /sys/class/backlight/s1d13xxxfb/brightness
echo 115 > /sys/devices/platform/jornada_lcd/lcd/s1d13xxxfb/contrast 

You can turn the backlight off and on with


echo 4 > /sys/devices/platform/jornada_lcd/lcd/s1d13xxxfb/bl_power


echo 0 > /sys/devices/platform/jornada_lcd/lcd/s1d13xxxfb/bl_power 
jornada_j720_devuanlinux.txt · Zuletzt geändert: 2020/10/22 11:46 von stefan