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GameCube (Games) Software Hardware Linux

GameCube-Powered Webserver 277

Posted by timothy
from the but-does-it-play-dvds dept.
Daniel Kolph writes "The GameCube Linux Project has just released, what they call the GameCube Linux Alpha This is an 1 MB busybox-based Linux system that contains screen output, network code, a telnet server and a webserver. They also provide a kernel patch. (Screenshots/Download)"
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GameCube-Powered Webserver

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:29PM (#8175218)
    Let's just get the 'they must be running their website on it' joke out of the way right now.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:30PM (#8175225)
    Looks like their server is powered by a gamecube.

    Mario can't handle the load of the pipe, we may need another plumber.

    I can't think of any more lame jokes
  • Soooo... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mac os ken (732050) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:30PM (#8175226) Homepage Journal
    I can run Linux on my GameCube and OS X on my XBox 2 now? Man today is a great /. day for hacking videogame consoles. PowerPC rocks.
    • Re:Soooo... (Score:3, Funny)

      by NanoGator (522640)
      "I can run Linux on my GameCube and OS X on my XBox 2 now? Man today is a great /. day for hacking videogame consoles. PowerPC rocks."

      What happens when you're done making Linux boot?
    • Re:Soooo... (Score:2, Redundant)

      by Afrosheen (42464)
      Yeah really, what's next? Running Linux on Janet Jackson's boob? I mean, the silicon is already there and there's plenty of metal.. (bu dum ching!)
    • Hey, don't forget that I finally got Linux to boot on my electric toothbrush this morning. That distro is coming soon and will change the world in the exact same way that Linux on GameCube will.

      Oh wait...
  • by ChiralSoftware (743411) <info@chiralsoftware.net> on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:30PM (#8175227) Homepage
    Sony PS2/Linux vs. Gamecube Linux vs. Xbox Linux? I'm looking forward to seeing which is the better choice for my database cluster.
  • by iamdrscience (541136) <(michaelmtripp) (at) (gmail.com)> on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:31PM (#8175233) Homepage
    Who the hell's gonna use before they port it from Alpha to PowerPC?
  • Is this the first-ever Shashdotted GameCube? First-ever Slashdotted game console period?
  • Mirror (Score:5, Informative)

    by FiberOpPraise (607416) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:32PM (#8175256) Homepage
    Mirror! [fibersnet.net]
  • by BeerCat (685972) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:33PM (#8175259) Homepage
    "Dad, I'm tired of my old console. It's not cutting edge any more!"

    "No problem, son. Give it to me, and I'll turn it into neat server"

    So, after things like C64 servers, and various other Linux on console builds, what's the next challenge? A Sinclair ZX81 (Timex 1000) server?
    • by Anonymous Coward
      This is getting way out of hand.

      "Dad, I'm tired of my BMW. It's not cutting edge any more!"

      "No problem, son. Park it out back, and I'll turn it into a neat Beowulf cluster."

    • Not a good idea. Despite the pleasure of running a webserver in 16k of memory, uptime will be severely hampered by the fact that the ZX81 crashes when touched, breathed upon, or subjected to any sort of vibration (such as a nearby person). It would just give Linux a bad reputation.

      ===========

  • by Excen (686416) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:33PM (#8175261) Homepage Journal

    [Insert witty Beowulf cluster joke here]

    Seriously though, why would someone do this? It's not going to be very powerful, there's no way in hades it would survive a /.ing, besides the geek factor, why would this even be remotely considered? The X-Box would be a better platform for mods than a Gamecube, when just considering hardware.
  • It even uses a backported version of Amigo Imnolar's O(1) scheduler patch. I reckon this'll probably run almost as fast as the raw GameCube hardware/firmware.
  • ....when you telnet from a GameCube!

    On a more serious note (the site is down), do you install from a mini-DVD, or from a memory card? Does it involve starting and stopping a certain game like the Xbox?

    • most probably like you load up warezed games from internet.

      through a loading program on that runs on pc that exploits a flaw in the phantasy star onlines update code.

      or so, I don't own a gc so I haven't digged into it that much.
    • by dubbreak (623656) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:47PM (#8175384)
      from the faq:
      Runnings Homebrew Code

      Can I just burn a 8 cm CD/DVD and use it in the GameCube?

      No. The GameCube reads no CDs/DVDs. There is no way to produce a GameCube compatible optical media using a CD/DVD burner.

      So do I run homebrew code on the GameCube?

      The PSOload [gcdev.com] method is the only way.

      What do I need in order to run homebrew code?

      A GameCube, any version of Phantasy Star Online, a Broadband Adapter, a memory card, and PSOload [gcdev.com].

      Do I need a modchip?

      There are no modchips.

      Will any of this disable the ability to play games?

      No.

      3 Helping

  • Image mirror (Score:5, Informative)

    by Kizzle (555439) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:36PM (#8175293)
    Here is a mirror of the screenshots in case the server gets /.ed. http://hackermedia.net/downloads/gamecubelinux [hackermedia.net]
  • Sad... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by LamerX (164968) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:37PM (#8175300) Journal
    You know it's a sad state of affairs when someone has to put a disclaimer at the bottom of thier website about the DMCA. Its really a bummer that you can't just do anything to the things you own anymore. Just how useless does this make things? Oh wow another game system. Or COOL, my game system can do this and this and this! The only reason I bought a Dreamcast was for haXorability, and all the cool software people were writing for it. And it's the cool things like this that make me want to buy a game cube.
    • Re:Sad... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Neo-Rio-101 (700494)
      I work as a network engineer, and routers and VPN devices usually come out of the boxes in EULAed bags... much like prepackaged software. You know... "Do not open this plastic cover unless you agree to the EULA"

      I mean, this may be acceptable in a business environment, but the day when you get your next game console - it will probably come with all this legalese as well.
    • Re:Sad... (Score:2, Insightful)

      by 88NoSoup4U88 (721233)
      You know it's a sad state of affairs when someone has to put a disclaimer at the bottom of thier website about the DMCA. Its really a bummer that you can't just do anything to the things you own anymore. Just how useless does this make things? Oh wow another game system. Or COOL, my game system can do this and this and this! The only reason I bought a Dreamcast was for haXorability, and all the cool software people were writing for it. And it's the cool things like this that make me want to buy a game cube.
  • Look... (Score:5, Funny)

    by rune2 (547599) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:37PM (#8175308) Homepage
    (Italian accent) It's a me Linux!
  • why telnet? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by NoSuchGuy (308510) <do-not-harvest-m ... dot@spa.mtrap.de> on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:42PM (#8175355) Journal
    Why is there always telnet? Because of the clear text transmitted password?

    Why can't they implement ssh from start up of their project?

    • Reasons to use Telnet over SSH:
      1) Lower CPU ulitilization
      2) Lower Memory usage
      3) Convenience
      4) It's currently not being used as a Public web server.
    • because you want to telnet to one port after another to test listeners. How are you going to to ssh to port 80 to see if apache works?

      ssh is better for stable environment, telnet is better for the research lab.

      • Use netcat to connect to an arbitrary port to see what talks back to you. Use ssh to get a shell on a remote machine. Use telnet to connect to/from machines that are too old to have something modern.
        • You talk about the stable environment, the system where many applications are already ported.

          I was talking about the new system, where just few applications exist besides the kernel and the shell.

          Remember? The original post was about Linux on the GameCube, the operating environment that just born and their developers did not have enough time to port all 2,000 linux applications their.

          Eventually, after porting the rest of linux applications their, they will use right tool for the right job. But now the

  • by steveha (103154) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:44PM (#8175366) Homepage
    So far, they are just playing with software. They convince the GameCube to load the software over the network port.

    I'm probably not very interested in this unless I can hack the hardware a bit: add a hard drive, add a second network port, etc.

    A GameCube would make a sweet firewall/router box if you could get two network ports on it and Linux. The price would be right too.

    Note that the optical drive is fairly useless: you cannot burn a disk that will work in a GameCube, not with a conventional CD burner. :-(

    steveha
    • A GameCube would make a sweet firewall/router box if you could get two network ports on it and Linux. The price would be right too.

      Note that if you're just a home user (and since you are seriously considering using a gaming console as a Firewall / router, I assume you are), then you're Internet pipe is likely limited to 1-5 Mbps down maximum, and a fraction of that up. In this case the gamecube's single 10/100 NIC would do just fine for a firewall. Just make a virtual ethernet port (ifconfig eth0:0 etc) a

      • He said firewall while most people realy dont understand what a real modern firewall does anymore a virtual interface is nearly useless for any sort of firewalling. A tagged port would be fine.

        If you use a virtual interface you may not be able to run DHCP if the ISP does as well and have it work well. Running a PPPoE session might work ok if you trust your ISP.

        Again I should stress natting does not make a firewall. You need a lot of proxy applications that can filter at higher levels than IPs ports and
        • most people realy dont understand what a real modern firewall does

          I had in mind a computer with two network ports, which looks at each IP packet and decides whether to let that packet in to the home network. No packet would go on the network without being actively copied from the in port to the home network port.

          about calling a linux box a router it can route yes it's ok at it yes but it's latency is horid.

          I have a Netgear home firewall/router, and its latency seems fine for my home use. I would lik
          • Like I said, for a home connection having 1 port vs. two ports is pretty much irrelevant due to your available bandwidth. ANd despite what the above poster said, to the Linux kernel a virtual NIC is the *exact* same as a normal NIC, you can do the exact same IPTables rules between two virtual interfaces as two seperate cards.

            Trust me I have done this myself before, it works fine. Don't let the lack of a second card stop you. It's fine for home use.
        • Again I should stress natting does not make a firewall. You need a lot of proxy applications that can filter at higher levels than IPs ports and who initiated a connection.

          Er, who saind anything about NAT?

          To Linux, a virtual interface *IS* a real interface. You can do all the exact same stuff with IPTables just as if you had two seprate ethernet cards.

          Your above comments lead me to believe you didn't know what I meant by virtual interface.


    • if you could get two network ports on it


      You can't. The expansion bays on the bottom of the gamecube are all different sizes/shapes. A given expansion device can only go in one particular slot, so you can't have two of them on one gamecube.

      Also, one of the three ports is not the same type of interface as the others. I think there are two labeled 'serial' and another labeled 'hi-speed'.

    • (Pay no attention to that $49 Linksys Router/Firewall behind the Gamecube!)

      OK, a one-armed firewall isn't going to protect you against everything, but there are configurations where it works just fine. For instance, if it's bright enough to handle two different IP addresses on the same port, you can have it look like 1.1.1.1 to your cable modem and 10.1.1.1 to your PC, and do NAT or proxies or whatever. But even if it can only support one address, you can still use it for proxies - its address is 10.2.2

    • A GameCube would make a sweet firewall/router box if you could get two network ports on it and Linux. The price would be right too.

      Seems like a dumb use for it practically speaking.

      Wouldn't one of those $30-$40 Linksys/D-Link/Netgear router/switches be a better solution? And you wouldn't even have to hack it to make it work.

      Though doing it "just for fun" is certainly understandable.
      • Wouldn't one of those $30-$40 Linksys/D-Link/Netgear router/switches be a better solution?

        As long as they work the way you want, sure. But you can't really customize the way they work. And I consider my firewall to be an important thing, and I would like to build it from source so I can be sure I know what it does. (*cough* Belkin *cough*)

        steveha
        • As long as they work the way you want, sure. But you can't really customize the way they work. And I consider my firewall to be an important thing, and I would like to build it from source so I can be sure I know what it does.

          OK ... I'll go with that. But if are so concerned about your firewall, why on Earth would you want to use a GameCube? They aren't exactly designed to run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

          I bought a GameCube the day they came out and mine died on me with *very* *minim
          • I was mostly interested because it's a non-x86 processor, so it should be immune to the most common (x86-specific) attacks.

            You may have a point about the reliability. But keep in mind that a Linux-based firewall will just sit there, with Linux and your firewall rules and everything loaded in RAM. And the worst stress on a system is turning it on and off, and a firewall will be on 24/7. And the firewall wouldn't be using the graphics processor at all, so another whole source of problems would be out of t
    • I was looking on Gamespy at GC parts and accessories right after I bought mine and I found a SD card to GameCube memory adaptor. They only had 64MB cards showing, but now there are SDs up to 1Gb [?] With two slots, what would it take to use them as bootable drives??? Although I suppose you'd need the Phantasy star game to legaly use load the hacked game save [avoid that pesky DMCA thingy]

      One of the neatest things about GC is that it's got enough smarts burned into it to run without any discs or cards

    • It would be difficult to produce disks that the thing can read, but I would think the connection between the optical disk and the rest of the innards would be where any storage mechanism would have to go. There wouldn't be any built-in functionality to allow an extra storage interface. I'm guessing that the generic expansion ports would be on the slow side for that usage also...

  • Enhydra [enhydra.org], an Open Source Java-based Application Server, was recently installed [sourceforge.net] on an XBox using Xebian [xbox-linux.org].

    I had submitted a story about this the day it happened (a few days ago) but for some reason it didn't make the cut. I guess underpowered web servers are sexier than underpowered application servers..(?)
  • Does anyone remember Magnavox's Odyssey 2? It had cool games, very atari 2600-like, with a one button joystick. But, it had a full keyboard, and some games used it. Heck it even had a crude speech adapter. Makes you wonder why they don't build a keyboard right into the current consoles. Might make playing first person games more PC-like. And yes, I know you can play most games on the PC too, but still...new uses such as displaying jpg cd's, etc.
  • Bookmark! (Score:5, Funny)

    by blackmonday (607916) * on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @07:56PM (#8175447) Homepage
    He's got a bookmark to Slashdot in Safari! (look at the first screenshot). Real men type it in!

  • Cool and useless... signs of a Nice Hack(tm)!
  • by Munra (580414) <<slashdot> <at> <jonathanlove.co.uk>> on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @08:02PM (#8175487) Homepage
    From the homepage:
    As it is a computer with decent RAM and a good CPU, it makes sense to port Linux to this platform.
    Since when did porting Linux to a piece of hardware, require it to make sense? :)

    Manta
  • till they port 2.6, overclock the CPU, put on water cooling and cluster it :)

    Rus
  • by Realistic_Dragon (655151) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @08:21PM (#8175638) Homepage
    I keep trying the 192.168.0.47 address that this screenshot [gc-linux.org] shows for the GameCube server but I just get my crappy obsolete DreamCast webserver :o(
  • once, I actual got Linux running on an 386!

    ha-hah!
  • by lhpineapple (468516) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @09:30PM (#8176113)
    Let's hope they don't adopt the Street Fighter numbering system for new versions. I can see it now:

    Me: But I already have GameCube Linux Alpha 2 Turbo
    Salesman: Yes, but you don't have GameCube Linux Alpha 2 Turbo Championship Edition.
    Me: WHERE DO I SIGN?!
  • by Tim Browse (9263) on Tuesday February 03, 2004 @09:34PM (#8176143)
    ...and boy are my thumbs tired!
  • by Rolman (120909) on Wednesday February 04, 2004 @12:19AM (#8177143)
    The thing about having Linux on a Gamecube as opposed as installing it on an Xbox is the great power consumption savings.

    The Xbox is 4-5 times more power-hungry than a Gamecube, but you'd never get anywhere near 4x performance. For a personal server (even media player) the Gamecube's CPU, GPU and memory performance are great, good enough for most tasks and it has component video and digital audio output capabilities (though Nintendo has never released the digital audio adapter, so the only way to do it is using the Panasonic Q and the component cables are not very easy to get).

    The machine is also very cheap at $100 and small enough to fit anywhere, at least better than the Xbox. It may not have a Hard Drive but there's an SD Card adaptor that could be used for mass storage. I really prefer to have a smaller, low power alternative. You just can't get a 40W machine with such strong capabilities for that price anywhere else.

    The only thing missing is a way to automatically boot into Linux, as you still need the PSOLoad trick. It would be wonderful if some company like Codejunkies released a boot disk like the Freeloader. I'd hate to be forced into manually loading PSO every time there's a power outage.

There is hardly a thing in the world that some man can not make a little worse and sell a little cheaper.

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