[vcf-midatlantic] CHIP, was Re: WiFi RS-232 Internet Modem

David Riley fraveydank at gmail.com
Tue Jun 20 09:06:46 EDT 2017

> On Jun 19, 2017, at 4:45 PM, Dave McGuire via vcf-midatlantic <vcf-midatlantic at lists.vintagecomputerfederation.org> wrote:
> On 06/19/2017 04:21 PM, william degnan via vcf-midatlantic wrote:
>> You can always use a CHIP with Debian Linux if you want a "power on and
>> works" alternative, but you have to set up first.  That's the thing with
>> the WIFI232, works out of the box.
>  Most annoyingly, the CHIP has been unavailable for months.  They're
> pushing the hell out of "CHIP Pro", which has little in common with
> CHIP, but what I (personally) want is more CHIPs.  I have a bunch here,
> I use them for all sorts of things.  They keep saying it'll be back, but
> it keeps not coming back.  Very, very annoyed.

Had the same problem; we wanted to use some for work, but they had just recently stopped production. Fortunately, they're still selling PocketCHIPs (which come with original CHIPs), and we needed those too; we just didn't need 30 of the shells, but even at $60 each, they're both more suited to our intended use and much cheaper than a Chromebook equivalent. Going plan is to just keep the extra 20 PocketCHIP shells as backups and/or offload them to other employees (I offered to buy a few since I backed CHIP at Kickstarter time and have a pile of 9 devices).

In any case, though, depending on what you're looking for, the Orange Pi series (mostly compatible with RPi GPIO, thus the name) has a quite versatile lineup for not a lot of money, including various Ethernet, WiFi and Bluetooth options as well as some really tiny ones that can run on bodged-up PoE. Check them out on AliExpress. Software support is kinda crappy compared to CHIP or RPi, but the Armbian distribution is getting pretty good.  I'm working on using two Orange Pi Zeros (512 MB) as redundant LDAP/Kerberos/DNS servers to replace my XServe G5, since they take up a tiny fraction of the power.

- Dave

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