Technical Blog

Black Armor Reading on ARM Architecture

So earlier I was digging around trying to find out more about the Black Armor NAS hardware and pulled some interesting information. Unfortunately, I don’t have a lot of ARM background so a good bit of it was confusing as I reviewed it.

Snippet from earlier hardware information gathering:

$ uname -a
Linux NAS3 #1 Thu Aug 26 12:26:10 CST 2010 v0.0.8 armv5tejl unknown
$ cat /proc/cpuinfo
Processor       : ARM926EJ-S rev 1 (v5l)

To rectify my lack of knowledge I started reading on Wikipedia and found the ARM architecture which made me realize that I’ve been missing out on an entirely different ecology of technologic innovation. The features that are available for each processor was an interesting ride down memory lane with my memory of Intel CPU features, that I’m familiar with, running parallel to the ARM decisions in the same areas. They have two completely different paths but seem to have interchange between the two. ARM has an interesting history as a company as well.

Black Armor status

So my list of things to figure out keeps growing but I don’t seem to get any time to work on them.

  1. UPS software setup
  2. DLNA server functionality
  3. USB Hub issue to figure out so I can run the UPS and Printer together.
  4. Serial Port hack (new)

I also want to get the serial port hack working which requires some physical work disassembling the NAS and maybe some soldering work to build a serial converter. The major work is already done by another guy on but I’d have to follow along. There also appears to be a shortcut with an old Nokia USB cell phone cable that might be worth checking out.

Maybe next weekend I’ll get some time. Project is just not getting cycles but I’m still thinking about it.

Black Armor USB Ports on NAS

So I’m working on the UPS addition and forgot I use that USB port for my printer sharing. So time to do some reading on USB hubs and the Black Armor NAS 110. The printer is important and the UPS is important. I wonder if I can mix my peanut butter and chocolate.

Even stranger, there is a USB port on the front of the box but that is special purposed for just USB Memory backups only.

So I have several paths here to check.

Black Armor: A ToDo List - UPS and DLNA

I have two new quick projects that I need for my Black Armor NAS 110 in the immediate future.

First I need the UPS functionality for this device as I’m taking power hits at my residence and my old UPS’ are just way too old and not working to keep the NAS running after a power blip. I bought an APC Back-UPS ES BE550G 550 VA 330 Watts at CostCo with one of their specials. The Black Armor NAS documentation said it only works with APC UPS so I thought I was okay but with further reading in the forums they say results vary with APC devices. So time to see if my new APC UPS will work with the built-in software or if the software needs improvements. So I hope to have a smart UPS running but just the dumb UPS functionality without a shutdown mode will have to do if I cannot get it working. The smart UPS depends on apcupsd 3.12.2 according to a post.

$ /usr/sbin/apcupsd --version
apcupsd 3.12.2 (18 January 2006) redhat

Next on the list is to figure out how functional the streaming media works on the device. This will hopefully be more straight forward than the UPS. Family time will be vastly improved if I can get the DVD collection running off this device. DLNA is an interesting subject and my BlueRay player hooked to my TV may be able to play movies off the NAS. That would be optimal.