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Old July 24th, 2012, 07:21 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Adventures in USB OTG; what are you using it for?

What are you guys using USB OTG for?

As an offshoot of another thread, I thought I'd post some of my thoughts and ask for other ideas. So, post up!

--------------------------

Edit: I thought I'd keep track of what we're using USB OTG for, so this could be a one-stop-shop for what works and what doesn't.

Updated 08/10/12:

Mass Storage: (ROOT ONLY) This post. The one you're reading. Further down. That's everything you need to attach a mass storage device to your tablet.

Serial Communications: This post. Use your tablet to control devices using a serial cable and terminal emulation! Very handy for IT guys out there, or even a lot of gadget geeks.

Keyboards/Mice: This post says that a Logitech K400 wireless keyboard/trackpad combo works nicely. A number of other wired keyboards and mice have been tested, too.

Game controllers: This post says he uses it with an Xbox controller for games. Also, this post indicates that the PS3's Six-axis controllers work.

Importing photos from a camera: This post proves that PTP picture mode works on cameras, and the N7 can import photos. Of course, mass storage mode on cameras works too!

Camera controller: This post points out that you can use the DSLR Controller app to control your Canon camera via USB. Cool.

Ethernet connectivity: This post has some details about using USB powered Ethernet network adapters to connect your OTG device to wired Ethernet. Handy when wifi isn't available, or for network troubleshooting.


--------------------------


There is, of course, the obvious use. Storage. I've purchased this USB OTG cable. It was higher priced, but I liked the 90 degree bend could use Prime shipping.

Along with that, I bought this 32gb HP USB drive which was dirt cheap and tiny.

I've installed this kernel, which supports NTFS so that I don't have to re-encode my movies into smaller file sizes. You don't need this if you can stick to the FAT file system.

Lastly, I installed Stickmount to mount and unmount the drives when they are plugged in.

All of this works great. Stickmount is very nice for mounting and unmounting the drives, my 8gb test movie played easily, and I even tried plugging in my 500gb USB drive to see if the tablet would deliver enough power - it's perfect.

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Old July 24th, 2012, 07:27 PM   #2 (permalink)
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What got me more excited today, though, was the thought that I could use this USB OTG cable along with my USB-to-serial converter.

I'm an IT guy and frequently need to connect to devices via serial communication. It's silly to have a big laptop for this - often all I need to do is issue a couple commands or check configuration.

I have a Trendnet SU-S9 USB-to-serial adapter. I did some digging and found out this uses the widely supported Prolific chipset. The posts I was reading in the forums mostly indicated manual building and installation of drivers, though.

After a little digging, I discovered Slick USB 2 Serial. They also have a Pro Version.

I installed it to give it a shot... and amazingly, it worked perfectly. Connect the serial converter to the OTG cable, and fire up the app. Select your settings, hit connect, and boom, you've got a serial session.

Purchased the pro version immediately - this is going to save me a huge amount of time and will be a tremendous convenience.
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Old July 24th, 2012, 07:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the tip on that HP USB drive. I have a portable HDD but this is much more convenient for carrying around, and won't be heavier than my Nexus 7 (or Galaxy Nexus).
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Old July 24th, 2012, 08:05 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I use otg with a wireless logitech controller. Works about 90% correctly
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Old July 25th, 2012, 07:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umataro42 View Post
Thanks for the tip on that HP USB drive. I have a portable HDD but this is much more convenient for carrying around, and won't be heavier than my Nexus 7 (or Galaxy Nexus).
I haven't got an OTG cable yet, but I have what has to be the smallest sdcard reader around, along with a 32GB sdcard:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002HGFKR8/ref=oh_details_o02_s00_i01

Amazon.com: SanDisk 32GB microSDHC Memory Card (Bulk Package): Computers & Accessories

You need to be careful not to sneeze or you can blow away the sdcard reader :-).
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Old July 25th, 2012, 09:14 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Incidentally, I did some testing today with my Logitech K400. It works nicely - plug the nano USB receiver into the OTG cable, and you immediately get a cursor on the screen, plus a keyboard options notification.

Very slick!
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Old July 25th, 2012, 09:44 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Anyone tried it directly with a camera? I think I read somewhere that the N7 natively supports PTP. This may mean I can directly connect and upload photos from my camera. Not got the OTG cable yet so unable to try.
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Old July 25th, 2012, 09:45 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I plug my USB xbox controller into it and play games that need a joystick. Great for stuff like sonic.
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Old July 25th, 2012, 09:50 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wibbly View Post
Anyone tried it directly with a camera? I think I read somewhere that the N7 natively supports PTP. This may mean I can directly connect and upload photos from my camera. Not got the OTG cable yet so unable to try.
I think all of my cameras mount as Mass Storage Mode but I'll check when I get home.
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Old July 25th, 2012, 10:11 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by binary visions View Post
I think all of my cameras mount as Mass Storage Mode but I'll check when I get home.
There's def an option on the N7 to select PTP (Settings, Storage, Menu, USB Computer Connection)...
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Old July 25th, 2012, 10:18 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wibbly View Post
There's def an option on the N7 to select PTP (Settings, Storage, Menu, USB Computer Connection)...
That's the opposite of what you want to do, though. That would allow the Nexus 7 to be mounted to the computer as a PTP device; it doesn't allow a PTP device to mount to the Nexus 7.
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Old July 25th, 2012, 12:37 PM   #12 (permalink)
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So, PTP works great with the OTG cable.

When you plug in a PTP device, it immediately pops up the Gallery app, with a new folder there containing all of your PTP pictures.

When you open the folder, you have an Import option for the photos. Or you can just browse them if you want.

Slick!

edit: I've now tried this with two point-and-shoot cameras, two DSLRs, and putting my Galaxy Nexus into PTP mode; it has worked with all of them.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 09:31 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I have the Logitech wireless keyboard/mouse.. will one or both of these work with the org
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Old July 26th, 2012, 09:38 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4ubest View Post
I have the Logitech wireless keyboard/mouse.. will one or both of these work with the org
Yes, they will work.

I don't know if the "unifying" aspect of the receiver will work without driver software. I just don't know how that part of it functions. They will definitely work individually, but I haven't tried connecting two devices to the same Logitech receiver.

My K400 keyboard has both a trackpad and keyboard - but it's only one wireless device. Both the keyboard and the trackpad work when it's plugged into the OTG cable.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 10:28 AM   #15 (permalink)
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I've not got the OTG cable yet but I'm interested to find out if my Plantronics USB headset works. I was disappointed to find that the headphone socket is just that headphones only and does not support microphones. If OTG supports USB sound recording devices this could be a help.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 10:51 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Question microUSB on the Nexus 7

On my Galaxy S2, using a microUSB to USB cable, I can plug in and read USB drives and card readers. However, I can't get this to work on my Nexus 7. Has the microUSB capability been neutered?
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Old July 26th, 2012, 10:54 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Hmm, I don't have anything I can test recording with unfortunately. Let us know if you try it!
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Old July 26th, 2012, 10:56 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeP0001 View Post
On my Galaxy S2, using a microUSB to USB cable, I can plug in and read USB drives and card readers. However, I can't get this to work on my Nexus 7. Has the microUSB capability been neutered?
Check out this thread:

http://androidforums.com/nexus-7/589205-adventures-usb-otg-what-you-using.html

You need to use Stickmount (and be rooted). It works, it just seems that there's no built-in way to mount the device without being rooted.

Note that other devices, like mice/keyboards/peripherals, do not require rooting or mounting.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 11:06 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Many thanks for that quick reply! I will try that.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 11:14 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by binary visions View Post
Check out this thread:

http://androidforums.com/nexus-7/589205-adventures-usb-otg-what-you-using.html

You need to use Stickmount (and be rooted). It works, it just seems that there's no built-in way to mount the device without being rooted.

Note that other devices, like mice/keyboards/peripherals, do not require rooting or mounting.
I merged these two threads.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 11:16 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by binary visions View Post
Yes, they will work.

I don't know if the "unifying" aspect of the receiver will work without driver software. I just don't know how that part of it functions. They will definitely work individually, but I haven't tried connecting two devices to the same Logitech receiver.

My K400 keyboard has both a trackpad and keyboard - but it's only one wireless device. Both the keyboard and the trackpad work when it's plugged into the OTG cable.
Great , thanks for the recommendation and the k400 should be here tomorrow so I can try with my otg cable.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 12:02 PM   #22 (permalink)
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I'm going to tether to my DSLR and use an app called DSLR Controller to control the camera form the Nexus.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 12:34 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Default What can you use the USB OTG cable for on a stock unrooted N7?

I prefer not to root. Question is does the mini USB OTG have any use in a stock N7? What functions besides charging and file transfer are available with the USB connection? Thanks.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 12:38 PM   #24 (permalink)
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I edited the OP so we can keep track of all the things people are using the OTG cables for and what works.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyHoyle View Post
I plug my USB xbox controller into it and play games that need a joystick. Great for stuff like sonic.
Cool, does the game have to specifically support a controller? Or does it work for all games?
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Old July 26th, 2012, 01:01 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trankster View Post
I prefer not to root. Question is does the mini USB OTG have any use in a stock N7? What functions besides charging and file transfer are available with the USB connection? Thanks.
Check the original post in this thread (your thread was merged into this one). Lots of uses - the only thing you can't do without rooting is mass storage. All other peripherals work when you aren't rooted.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 01:05 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trankster View Post
I prefer not to root. Question is does the mini USB OTG have any use in a stock N7? What functions besides charging and file transfer are available with the USB connection? Thanks.
Quote:
Originally Posted by binary visions View Post
Check the original post in this thread (your thread was merged into this one). Lots of uses - the only thing you can't do without rooting is mass storage. All other peripherals work when you aren't rooted.
Sorry, that was me. I meant to let you know but got called into a meeting at work.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 02:46 PM   #27 (permalink)
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using it for mass storage, seems it can read FAT or NTFS but can't get movies to play from the stick . . .
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Old July 26th, 2012, 02:58 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Highland Ranger View Post
using it for mass storage, seems it can read FAT or NTFS but can't get movies to play from the stick . . .
Might be your movie app and/or the codec of the movie. You need to have a movie player app that can handle your movie.

I was using MX Player and testing it out with a .MKV file that was encoded with H.264.

The file extension should be obvious, but if you don't know the codec information, the media player on your computer should be able to tell you. For instance, VLC has a menu Tools > Codec Information that will tell you the codec used.
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Old July 26th, 2012, 03:35 PM   #29 (permalink)
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I can't get my Sony camera to work. I plug it in and the gallery appears, but no pics. Any suggestions?
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Old August 1st, 2012, 02:54 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chistery View Post
I can't get my Sony camera to work. I plug it in and the gallery appears, but no pics. Any suggestions?
Are you sure you don't have an additional folder in the gallery, that contains your Sony pictures?

I've tried this with 4 cameras now - a Canon point-and-shoot, an Olympus point-and-shoot, and two Nikon DSLRs. I also turned on PTP on my Galaxy Nexus and tried it. In ALL cases, the gallery popped right up, and there was an additional folder that had the PTP device's pictures in it.
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Old August 4th, 2012, 03:30 PM   #31 (permalink)
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I've seen the note about needing a NTFS kernel but I'm wondering if stock JB will read EXT3/4?
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Old August 5th, 2012, 10:46 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MusicAddict View Post
I've seen the note about needing a NTFS kernel but I'm wondering if stock JB will read EXT3/4?
Is it possible to use external storage with out rooting the Nexus 7?? I do not want the hassle of rooting the device, I've no other needs which would require rooting. The capability to expand the in-built storage and to be able to play movies stored on external USB stick is very desirable. Can anyone explain if this is possible???
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Old August 6th, 2012, 07:25 AM   #33 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asterix007 View Post
Is it possible to use external storage with out rooting the Nexus 7?? I do not want the hassle of rooting the device, I've no other needs which would require rooting. The capability to expand the in-built storage and to be able to play movies stored on external USB stick is very desirable. Can anyone explain if this is possible???
Sorry, but right now the only way to use mass storage devices is to root.

You have other options, such as Seagate's GoFlex Satellite drive:
GoFlex Satellite Wireless | Seagate

That's a lot less convenient than just plugging in a thumb drive to your tablet, but you don't have to root.

It's not impossible that Google will release a software update to correct this issue - but for the time being, it requires root in order to use mass storage devices.
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Old August 6th, 2012, 08:59 AM   #34 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by binary visions View Post
Sorry, but right now the only way to use mass storage devices is to root.

You have other options, such as Seagate's GoFlex Satellite drive:
GoFlex Satellite Wireless | Seagate

That's a lot less convenient than just plugging in a thumb drive to your tablet, but you don't have to root.

It's not impossible that Google will release a software update to correct this issue - but for the time being, it requires root in order to use mass storage devices.
Thanks, that's an interesting option. Have you or anyone else tried out streaming over wireless from a hard drive (like the one in the link above). I'm wondering if the performance is reasonable.. Please comment.
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Old August 6th, 2012, 10:41 AM   #35 (permalink)
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I have a friend who is using one. He says performance is good - which you'd expect, since you typically stream with the hard drive <10 ft. from the device. He streams HD movies from his.
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Old August 6th, 2012, 04:37 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by binary visions View Post
I have a friend who is using one. He says performance is good - which you'd expect, since you typically stream with the hard drive <10 ft. from the device. He streams HD movies from his.
The Seagate Wireless drive has bad reviews on Amazon, plus it is almost as costly as the tablet itself. Media streaming over Wifi has many kinks still, plus in this case there is the added cost of wifi in the hard drive. I'll pass...

Will keep looking for another way to mount a USB stick... Any other suggestions with out rooting?
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Old August 6th, 2012, 06:00 PM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
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So, PTP works great with the OTG cable. . .
Hi. Does PTP work without the Nexus 7 being unlocked and rooted?

Cheers - Y
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Old August 7th, 2012, 06:09 AM   #38 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ydnaroo View Post
Hi. Does PTP work without the Nexus 7 being unlocked and rooted?

Cheers - Y
Yes, the only function for OTG that you need root for (so far) is mass storage.
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Old August 7th, 2012, 08:13 AM   #39 (permalink)
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USB to Ethernet adapters might be convenient for times when wifi isn't available. Most adapters should work, this post has some more details:

http://androidforums.com/nexus-7/596709-nexus-7-connects-via-ethernet.html

The Linksys USB300M is a great form factor - not too thick or bulky.
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Old August 7th, 2012, 07:56 PM   #40 (permalink)
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I've got some movies too big to fit on a FAT filesystem. Has anyone tried NTFS or other filesystems that will allow large files? (I can't experiment till my OTG adapter arrives).
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Old August 7th, 2012, 08:45 PM   #41 (permalink)
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If you read the first post, you'll see that I have an NTFS kernel and tried an 8gb movie just fine.
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Old August 8th, 2012, 05:06 AM   #42 (permalink)
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If you read the first post, you'll see that I have an NTFS kernel and tried an 8gb movie just fine.
Yea, I saw that you had an NTFS kernel. I didn't see if the stock 4.1.1 kernel was NTFS aware though - I've only rooted my tablet, not installed a new rom.
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Old August 8th, 2012, 05:42 AM   #43 (permalink)
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Ahh, I see.

The stock kernel does not support NTFS. I linked to another kernel - you don't have to install a new ROM. Just install the kernel. No data wiping needed.
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Old August 8th, 2012, 06:17 AM   #44 (permalink)
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Running a "mount" command in a shell, I see that many filesystems are mounted with ext4, so it might be simpler to format the sdcard as ext4 than to replace the kernel. I don't have any Windows boxes I want to talk to anyway.
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Old August 8th, 2012, 11:53 AM   #45 (permalink)
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I hope we see a crop of new, tiny usb-to-go adapters with a low profile bust out on Amazon soon.
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Old August 9th, 2012, 12:33 PM   #46 (permalink)
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I have a new Cisco/Linksys USB300M USB-to-Ethernet adapter that I've been playing with.

It's very nice - pretty tiny, and it works well with the Nexus 7.

Extremely handy for network troubleshooting.
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Old August 9th, 2012, 03:29 PM   #47 (permalink)
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Using my OTG cable to connect my six axis PS3 controller to my Nexus 7, and I'm playing Dead Trigger which works perfectly with the controller.
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Old August 9th, 2012, 04:19 PM   #48 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Claghorn View Post
Running a "mount" command in a shell, I see that many filesystems are mounted with ext4, so it might be simpler to format the sdcard as ext4 than to replace the kernel. I don't have any Windows boxes I want to talk to anyway.
If you get conformation on this please let us other linux nerds know. :-P I'm waiting on my parts in the mail.
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Old August 10th, 2012, 04:12 PM   #49 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Claghorn View Post
Running a "mount" command in a shell, I see that many filesystems are mounted with ext4, so it might be simpler to format the sdcard as ext4 than to replace the kernel. I don't have any Windows boxes I want to talk to anyway.
Actually, I just got a OTG cable in the mail, and tried plugging in the sdcard I had formatted as NTFS, and it mounted just fine, so apparently the stock kernel does have NTFS support (or stickmount works some kind of fuse mount magic).

Unfortunately, the movie file I copied to the sdcard has a DTS soundtrack which apparently MX Player cannot play (sigh).

I'm reformatting the card as ext2 now to give that a try (I don't think a journal is really needed for a card I'll only be reading).
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Old August 10th, 2012, 04:55 PM   #50 (permalink)
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I'm reformatting the card as ext2 now to give that a try (I don't think a journal is really needed for a card I'll only be reading).
Couldn't get that to work at all, so I think I'll stick with NTFS. It apparently really is enabled in the stock kernel, the mount command shows me this after stickmount does its thing:

Code:
/dev/block/sda1 /storage/sdcard0/usbStorage/sda1 ntfs ro,nosuid,nodev,relatime,uid=0,gid=0,umask=00,nls=iso8859-1,errors=continue,mft_zone_multiplier=1 0 0
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