andLinux PreBeta

Andlinux working logo.jpg andLinux working Logo

andLinux is a complete Linux system designed for developing applications and runs seemlessly in Windows 2000 based systems (2000, XP, 2003). The latest version is PreBeta (named PreBeta only due to its lack of installer). This project was started for Dynamism for the GP2X community, but its userbase far exceeds its original design. The GP2X community will always be the heart of andLinux, even though it is branching into a much larger scene. andLinux is free and will remain so, but donations are greatly needed.

  • andLinux uses CoLinux as its core which is confusing for many people. CoLinux is a port of the Linux kernel to Windows. Although this technology is like VmWare or Virtual PC, CoLinux differs iteself by being more of merger of Windows and the Linux kernel (Linux) and not an emulated PC, making it more efficient.
  • andLinux is not just for development and runs almost all Linux applications without modification.

AndLinux 640x480.JPG


Jun, 22nd 2007

Please head to Forums now open!!!. - David

Jun, 20th 2007

Coming soon: - David

May, 16th 2007

I thought I would give an andLinux status update. I am waiting for some of the other projects that andLinux uses (Ubuntu, Xming, etc...) to settle a little before releasing Beta1. Joachim has offered to help me with the new installer and I am hoping that his offer is still on the table. Other then that, BetaOne (renamed from Beta1), will be out this Summer. - David

Mar, 20th 2007

I've written a few small tools to even better integrate andLinux into Windows (start menu, quick launch icons, file type associations, and explorer shell extensions). They're available for download on my website:
- Joachim

Jan, 16th 2007

  • andLinux Beta1 about to release to testing.
  • Please donate screenshots for the web page. The current screenshot is from POC v1.0.  :-/
  • andLinux userbase now exceeds 30,000 users!


  • Windows 2000/XP/2003 or higher
  • 128MB of free RAM (64MB possible, by editing settings_static.txt)
  • 4GB available hard drive space.
  • a good internet connection, to be able to install further applications.
  • some basic Linux skills to proceed once installed (working with Synaptic and Xfce, unless you just want to see Firefox under Linux).

A good way to get the needed skills for the Linux noob is to fiddle a bit with a Xubuntu live-CD.

What you will get

You will get:

  • a fully functional Linux system, however without the usual desktop (you already have got one from Windows)
  • a second Xfce panel e.g. at the top of your Windows desktop, from which you can start Linux applications.
  • Linux applications and Windows applications can be used simultaneously and you can cut and paste text between them, pipes (a Windows application writes something into a Linux application) do work as well.
  • a Firefox Web-Browser
  • Synaptic to install further applications.

You will NOT get:

  • another desktop
  • the bench of applications that usually ship with Linux distributions (you have to fetch whatever you want)
  • a printer driver
  • trouble with further drivers ;-)

First time installation

To install andLinux:

  • Run the self extracting 7zip and extract to your desired location. This will create a folder named andLinuxPreBeta off of this location. You may now rename the andLinux folder if desired.
  • Run the run_to_install.bat file by double clicking on it.
    • A small Windows command window will appear and should vanish after a few seconds. This will install the needed Windows drivers.
    • You may receive a Continue Anyway prompt because the WinTap driver isn't Microsoft certified. You will need to click this.
      • If the Window stays, check to see if the title bar has the word Finished in it. If so, you may close the window and continue to the next step.
  • Run the startup.bat to start andLinux.

Please note that andLinux will gather all needed information about your system during startup so there should not be any additional configuration needed.


To uninstall andLinux:

  • Run the run_to_uninstall.bat file by double clicking on it.
    • A small Windows command window will appear and should vanish after a few seconds. This will remove the Windows drivers installed from the run_to_install.bat file.
      • If the Window stays, check to see if the title bar has the word Finished in it. If so, you may close the window and continue to the next step.
  • Delete the andLinux folder (or whichever name you renamed the andLinux folder to).

andLinux is now uninstalled.

Upgrading from previous version

To upgrade from POC v1.0 to v2.1 (Not recommended for PreBeta due to the OS change):

  • Extract the new version of andLinux to a NEW folder. Do not remove or overwrite your current version!
  • Run the run_to_uninstall.bat file by double clicking on it (this can be done from either version)
    • A small Windows command window will appear and should vanish after a few seconds. This will remove the Windows drivers installed from the run_to_install.bat file.
      • If the Window stays, check to see if the title bar has the word Finished in it. If so, you may close the window and continue to the next step.
  • Run the run_to_uninstall.bat file from the NEW andLinux folder by double clicking on it.
    • A small Windows command window will appear and should vanish after a few seconds. This will remove the Windows drivers installed from the run_to_install.bat file.
      • If the Window stays, check to see if the title bar has the word Finished in it. If so, you may close the window and continue to the next step.
  • If you wish to move over your current gp2x development drive, move it from the old andLinux's drive folder to the new andLinux's drive folder.
    • This will add all your /opt/gp2x files and directories to the new andLinux.
  • If you have any information that you wish to keep that is not in your /opt/gp2x directory, copy your old andLinux's Drives/base.drv file to your new andLinux's Old folder. Otherwise you may skip this step.
  • You are now ready to start your new version of andLinux by double clicking on the startup.bat file contained in its folder.
    • Once you have completed setting up your new version of andLinux, you may delete your old andLinux folder. Do not run the run_to_uninstall.bat file as it will remove the updated Windows driver.

Upgrade Notes

  • If you moved over your base.drv folder from your previous installation of andLinux, it will now be mounted as /mnt/old. You can copy the files from your old system's drive to your new using Midnight Command (mc) or using the command "copy -a <old file or directory> <place to install>" (without quotes).
    • Once you have completed moving your data, you can poweroff andLinux and delete the file in your Old folder.
  • Any user installed applications should now be reinstalled using Synpatic, apt-get or by copying.
  • You can copy over your settings from your old version of andLinux usually by running `copy -a /mnt/old/root /root` (without quotes).


  • Enter your andLinux folder and double click startup.bat to run
    • A window will appear labeled andServer (CoLinux). This window represents the andLinux backend.
    • When the sound system starts, you will hear a few sounds to confirm its startup.
    • Once andLinux is completely running, an application launcher panel will appear at the top of your monitor.
      • This window means that andLinux is now fully loaded.
      • You may select an application to launch (Console, FireFox, Synaptic, Write, etc.) or add your own.
        • Please add suggestions for running andLinux to the discussion section.

How to mount a Windows partition

If you want to mount a Windows Partition with andLinux you have to do the following steps (Lets call the partiton e:\):

  • go into your andLinuxPreBeta folder, open the file settings_static.txt and add the line

at the end. Make sure, you have a newline at the end of your settings_static.txt

  • start andLinux
  • open a shell
  • create the folder

(with the command: mkdir /mnt/e)

  • open the fstab (e.g with the command vim /etc/fstab)
  • insert the Line
 1 /mnt/e cofs defaults 0 0

the one at the begining of the line represents cofs1. If you want do add more partitons to access you can precede with cofs2=<partitionlabel> and 2 /mnt/<label> ... and so on. (do not use the zero's. It is used by the andLinux boot script.)

  • restart andLinux
  • now you can access the partition with Windows and andLinux at the same time. Make sure you do not edit the same File with Windows and andLinux at the same time.
  • have fun!

How to use an alternative keyboard layout, e.g. Colemak

  • Copy the layout file to andLinuxPreBeta\Xming\xkb\symbols
  • Add the following option to the exec0="xming\Xming.exe"... line in settings_static.txt:
-xkblayout colemak
  • Restart andLinux

andLinux & firewalls

andLinux must be able to communicate with Windows using TCP/IP. Since Windows contains its own software firewall and many users have software firewalls installed, some ports need to be opened in order for everything to work properly. This information is only for software firewalls and does not pertain to hardware firewalls. As long as Windows can communicate to the outside world and andLinux can communicate with Windows, your hardware firewall settings should be fine.

  • Exampels of software firewalls:
    • Windows Firewall (WindowsXP SP2 and higher have this installed and enabled by default)
    • Kerio Personal Firewall
    • Zone Alarm
    • Sygate Personal Firewall

andLinux communicates using a daemon called colinux-slirp-net-daemon.exe. Some software firewalls (like Zone Alarm) allow you to add open the firewall at the application level. This means that you only need to add the colinux-slirp-net-daemon.exe to the list of trusted applications and it will allow full access for andLinux to communicate. Others (Windows Firewall) need to have each port opened and some may require it to be done by specific ip. Since there are too many software firewall applications to cover, I will outline the ports and IP that need to be opened.

  • andLinux uses the following Local ports at IP
    • 21
    • 22
    • 1000
    • 1001
    • 1088 (required and communicates at remote port 6000)
    • 1135 (used for updating and communicates at remote port 80)
    • 1136 (used for updating and communicates at remote port 80)
    • 5000
    • 5001
    • 5901
    • 7100

Please note that some ports may not be required for normal use, but since no daemon is running on these ports, you should be okay to open them. Please note that except for noted above, these ports do not need to be opened to the internet... only to Windows.

Known Issues

Nothing Happens After Starting on PreBeta

  • Most probably this is an issue related to the WinTap adapter. Many firewalls apply restrictive default permissions to newly created network interfaces, which often results in incoming traffic for the "TAP-Colinux" adapter being blocked. Please ensure that your firewall does not block traffic on the "TAP-Colinux" interface!
  • In case this it still doesn't work, email me your network subnet and WinTap settings so we can test solutions.

File Manager erroring on PreBeta

  • I forgot to install the File Manager in PreBeta. You can correct this by running the following command:
    • apt-get install thunar

Printer Driver missing

  • Printing is not yet supported.

A solution to print over the network via Windows in in the pipe.

BSOD or rebooting machine on starup

  • (From the CoLinux mailing list) Do you have a recent Intel P4 box? If so you will probably have to modify your boot.ini and change the /NoExecute=<whatever> to /NoExecute=AlwaysOff
    • Right click on My Computer and select Properties. Click on the Advanced tab and then select the Settings button under Startup and Recovery. You can make the change to the line under Default Operating System or click the Edit button to create an additional startup option with this option.
    • There aren't any adverse performance issues known with setting this, but you will lose some protection from Buffer Overflow attacks.
  • This issue is not happening on my Core Duo machine in PreBeta.

Long Startup Times

  • Try this first: andLinux checks the root file system on every mount. You can use tune2fs to make andLinux only check the filesystem after a specified number of mounts (currently set to 1). This example sets the boot time e2fsck to run after 50 boots.
    • tune2fs -c 50 /dev/cobd0
  • Try this Next: We can force fastboot and skip all disk checking. This is a little more complicated process and I know very little about the fastboot feature (could someone add info about in the Discussion tab please?). This will greatly speed up boot times, but I have no idea how safe this is. I am currently testing it in the PreBeta and haven't had any issues. You can do a fastboot by adding a semephore file named fastboot in the root folder. When the system starts, it will see the file as a fastboot request, delete the semephore file and perform a fastboot. We need to stop the system from deleting the fastboot file so it will see it on each boot. There are several methods in getting fastboot to work, but I wanted one that could be copied and pasted in a single line. This is what I came up with. Easier/better/other methods are more then welcome since I just tossed this together. Please post other methods it in the discussion tab.
    • sed -e s@rm\ \-f\ \/fastboot\ \/forcefsck@rm\ \-f\ \/forcefsck@g /etc/init.d/ > /etc/init.d/ && mv -f /etc/init.d/ /etc/init.d/ && touch /fastboot
      • To disable fastboot, you can just remove the fastboot file in root (rm -f /fastboot). If you are going to stop using fastboot all-together, you can reverse the changes with the following command:
    • sed -e s@rm\ \-f\ \/forcefsck@rm\ \-f\ \/fastboot\ \/forcefsck@g /etc/init.d/ > /etc/init.d/ && mv -f /etc/init.d/ /etc/init.d/ && rm -f /fastboot
  • Try this at your own risk: It looks like these issues may start after using apt-get (update? dist-upgrade?). A fix may be to run the following command from your andLinux folder in Windows.
    • ImageResizeTool\e2fsck.exe -y -f Drives\base.drv
      • Please make a copy of your base.drv before trying as some users have reported corruption and lost data. Other users have reported success.
  • NOTE: I believe this is now fixed in PreBeta.


  • andLinux is beta software and there is no telling what it may do to your system. Use at your own risk! The author accepts no resposibility.
  • andLinux PreBeta has some parts that are held together with wires and duct tape. Good luck!  ;-)
  • andLinux will not use all allocated RAM unless needed.
  • andLinux is a fully functioning Linux system and can use native Linux apps without modification.
    • example: To install kde type 'apt-get install kde' (then most KDE applications will start from the comand line)
    • example: To install gimp type 'apt-get install gimp' (then gimp will start by typing 'gimp' on the command line)
      • You can also use Synaptic (in the launcher) to install applications. This is a graphical application to help with application installation and searching.
      • Also note that apt-get downloads the programs, no need to look for them on your own.


  • A huge thank you to Dynamism who supported this project with free hardware, resources, focus and guidance. Not to mention acting like my punching bag during those really tough problems. This is their project as much as mine and I am glad to be the one chosen to work on it.
  • Another huge thank you to ratx for providing the first mirror and to Gridmark for the second!
  • Xming credits Colin Harrison and Alexander Gottwald (retired).
  • CoLinux credits The CoLinux project, Dan Aloni and Henry Nestler.
  • System credits for not only staying good, but staying true!
  • NewSystem credits Ubuntu (Base OS) and Chris Dahl (Starter Image).
  • Dev Environment credits The GP2X Dev Wiki and all of its contributors.
  • Forum Support credits The GP32x forums and members and UbuntuForums.

These are the real heros of this project. Without their contributions, I would still be just a geek wondering if the GP2X was "cool" or not. This is their work! I only put it all together.


  • You can email me at davsolomon at gmail dot com
  • Dynamism will also be helping by supporting the project in the future, but only after the first beta (sorry).
  • I also frequent the The GP32x forums and


  • This software is covered under the GPL.
  • Use this software at your own risk! No fault will be taken by andLinux or anyone involved with andLinux.
  • You may not sell andLinux, but are welcome to distribute it freely.
    • This is not a GPL violation as the andLinux name and logo are owned by David Solomon.
  • You may not use the andLinux name without written permission from David Solomon.

Change Log

ChangeLog 10/6/06 PreBeta:

  • The Linux base has been moved from Debian Unstable to Ubuntu Edgy Eft. This was done only due to popular request. I am not anti/pro either Linux distribution and think they are both great products.
  • All non-Internet communication now use the WinTap protocol. Slirp was used for all communication, but it is too CPU intensive to be used everywhere. Slirp is great for Internet and is still used for Internet, but just not practical for X and sound. Due to adding WinTap, you can now use graphical applications that andLinux couldn't handle before. For normal desktop applications, you shuld see native speeds. For highly graphical applications... some are great and other are not so great.
  • andLinux no longer opens a console on bootup. I have moved to using Xfce's panel application. It is lightweight, clean, fast and customizable. There are still a few things that need correcting, but I prefer it and hope everyone else will too.
  • Aside from the performance enhancements above, I have been working very hard to improve the file system speed. I still experience some slow boot times when I first start andLinux, but I have gone from 3-5 minutes to well under a minute. Please understand that if you use NTFS compression, your boot times will increase (usually seen only on the first boot). Windows fragmentation is another cause of poor startup performance.
  • As usual, we've updated to the latest-and-greatest versions of CoLinux. We have also moved to the 2.6.17 kernel.
  • Sync'ed to Ubuntu Edgy Eft on 10/6/06
  • Moved to a smaller base OS setup. The move to Ubuntu made this pretty simple. In POCv1.0-POCv2.1, I loaded development tools, libraries, applications and more. Since people use andLinux for so many different things these days, keeping the OS simple allows everyone to use andLinux for whatever their need be. Rest assured, I have made great progress on the updater and hope this is the last version we need to start from scratch again.
  • I have made so many changes over the last 7 months that I can't even remember half the changes I made. I swore I was going to write them down as I went along, but the move to Ubuntu brought too many changes in too little time.

ChangeLog 3/5/06 v2.1:

  • Added mounting of Windows CDRom and Floppy
  • Increased Clolinux Block Device nodes from 4 to 8
  • Sync'ed to Debian Unstable @ 12PM EST on 3/5/06
  • Added Windows CDrom and Floppy to static settings file
  • Lowered memory from 192MB to 128MB (this is the memory used for andLinux and must be available)
  NOTE: On an original (older) P4 1.6Ghz system with 256MB RAM, andLinux was easily able to do 2.6.14 Kernel development with
  only 64MB.  96MB did speed performance, but only slightly.  There wasn't any noticable performance increase when going to
  128MB or 196MB.  128MB was chosen over 96MB as user needs may require the extra 32MB.
  • Added WinTap driver (NAT [Network Address Translation]) per Henry Nestlers request.
  This is a different style of networking which is faster and has increased benefits over the default slirp networking that
  andLinux uses, but must be manually configured.  I will try and automate this in the next version.  Since WinTap [NAT] 
  doesn't work on all systems, slirp was chosen as the default networking protocal for andLinux.  You can read the instructions
  for configuring NAT at the following site:
     NOTE: andLinux is based on Debian, so you will need to follow the Debian instructions.  Also, you will need to ignore
     the XML configuration instructions since andLinux does not use XML configuration.  Instead, just enter the settings_static.txt
     file and change the following lines from:
     Then save you settings_static.txt file
  • Updated Xming to latest version to correct the "clipboard bug"
  • Added Old folder for transferring files from POC1 to POC2.1
  • Updated startup instructions file (motd)
  • Added deborphan application
  This allows users who remove packages/applications find other packages which no longer have anything dependant on them.
  • andLinux now includes a fresh swap file in the Drives folder (255K compressed)
  If andLinux's startup time increases drastically after a fresh Windows reboot and the hard drive is constantly being accessed
  during this time, unzip the file overwritting your current swap.  This has corrected this issue in quite a few systems.

Changelog 1/19/06 v2.0:

  • Added sound (you will hear a noise on startup) to andLinux using the Enlightenment Sound Daemon (ESD) from the Cygwin project.
  NOTE: Since sound is sent to Windows via networking and networking is buffered, sound is also buffered.  I am currently working
  on a solution to make sound more "real time"
  • Updated Xming
  Using its cleaner integration with Windows.
  • Updated the CoLinux engine with a new version with custom modifications for andLinux by Henry Nestler
  • Xming and ESD now start and stop with andLinux
  • Changed slirp networking setup with modification suggested by Henry Nestler
  • Modified andLinux to do a ckfs of the filesystem on every boot (this actually speeds startup)
  • Xming and ESD are now transparent to the user (interface cleanup)
  • Modified the way andLinux handles semephore files
  • Moved the file systems out of test mode and activated the journals
  • Using new features of slirp, CoLinux daemon, etc.
  This allows andLinux to now be installed on any drive/folder.  Even though I am still defaulting the folder name to andLinux,
  you can rename the folder to anything you like.
  • Added the following applications:
     samba will be added for networking and printing, but these features are slated to be preconfigured in Beta 1.
  • Made settings.txt dynamic. settings_static.txt now holds andLinux's settings
  This is a configuration cleanup to accomodate the up-and-coming Windows/Linux configuration tool (Beta 1?).  This is only a temporary
  modification as all settings will be moved into a subdirectory and each category of settings will have its own file.
  At this time, you will need to adjust settings_static.txt in order to adjust your settings.
  • Sync'ed to Debian Unstable @ 4PM on 1/17/06
  • Removed the gp2x development libraries into a separate download
  • Created the plugin system for development libraries
  Addition of this feature is slated for Beta 1.
  • Modified andLinux's startup.bat file to accomodate chages
  • For safety reasons, andLinux no longer mounts your complete Windows C: drive as /mnt/c
  andLinux will now mount the folder where it was installed as /mnt/and.  To help avoice confusion, I have included a 
  files folder off of your andLinux install folder to place files for transfer.  You can then access these files in 
  Linux as /mnt/and/files.

Changelog 12/17/06 v1.0:

  • Initial release!

Downloading andLinux (190MB)

Please note that the software was scanned with Comodo Antivirus and Microsoft Defender before uploading.

andLinux PreBeta

andLinux POC v2.1

  • Dynamism customers can contact Dynamism to receive a copy of the software on CD (once in beta). After beta, it should be shipped with the GP2X units, Zaurii, XGP and any system that will allow Linux development.
  • Other resellers may distribute this software to their customers as long as they are willing to provide support. If you are a reseller, please contact me and we can work out a support solution for your customers.


I am trying to get andLinux its own hosting and need Donations. If you like andLinux, please donate. You can donate to andLinux by sending a PayPal donation to davsolomon @ gmail . com (remove spaces) or by purchasing a high speed download from MadTux ($5 per download is returned to andLinux). These funds are greatly needed, but are coming in very slowly. Please donate if you can.

Donation Totals

Since 12/17/05: $105.00

To those who've donated, your contributions are much appreciated. Thank you for becoming a part of andLinux.

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