EOMA68 Computing Devices

by EOMA68

An Earth-friendly way to easily upgrade and fix your own computer

View all updates Aug 03, 2016

Gimp, LibreOffice and Printing

by Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton

We’ve been asked to demonstrate LibreOffice, Gimp and also took the opportunity to show printing (in this case using a networked HP Laserjet).

We have two videos here, with Lilyana helping out. The setup is the sunxi 3.4 kernel (which is known to be stable but slower) as the latest experimental 4.7 mainline linux kernel is faster but regularly crashes. So please bear in mind: there is significant percentage points speed improvements to be had, here. Also bear in mind that these prototype units only have 1.0 GB of RAM, not 2.0 GB, and that the OS is installed on a slower 10mbytes/sec MicroSD card instead of the much faster Sandisk Ultra Plus cards which are known to operate at sustained speeds of 20mbytes/sec. The first video shows the well-known LibreOffice suite, starting it up, typing a few words and printing out. Strangely there’s a huge pause rendering the screen for print-preview. The second video likewise shows start-up time and print time for the Gimp, which has no such huge pause between pressing Ctrl-P and the print dialog coming up.

Overall, despite the lack of optimisation, it’s clearly functional. Unlike many other computers based around monolithic designs, we have room for improvement, including upgrading the entire computer for a fraction of the cost.

Update August 3, 2016: We received this from one of our backers:

I think the long pause to the printer dialog being fully rendered in the LO video could be the system checking the networked printer for status (possibly also waking it up) and capabilities. On the second print it then has that already cached so it’s much faster. At least that’s how it works when I turn on my my networked Epson to print something from Devuan. It just shows ‘waiting for printer’ or something next to the printer name and doesn’t redraw the window for a few seconds, then goes to ‘ready’. Maybe with your graphics stack it just doesn’t do the first full update (similar to when you started the GIMP the splashscreen was only updating when it was half-way done) so it’s just blank :)

So we tried it out - pressed "cancel" on a print, then tried again: it’s definitely taking several seconds to render, and it’s probably because there’s a "Print Preview" included by default in the LibreOffice print dialog. Basically it sounds like a bug in LibreOffice to me, if it takes this long! We tried it on an Intel laptop as well - you can see that the "Print Preview" also takes time to render, but it’s not as noticeable as the rest of the dialog comes up around it. Needs investigating.

About the Author

Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton

 Planet Earth. Usually.

$237,697 raised

of $150,000 goal

158% Funded! Order Below

Product Choices


Libre Tea Computer Card

An EOMA68-compatible computer card with an Allwinner A20 dual core processor, 2 GB of RAM, and 8 GB of NAND flash pre-installed with the Parabola GNU/Linux-libre operating system. We expect the Libre Tea Computer Card to receive the Free Software Foundation's Respects Your Freedom (RYF) certification before the first units ship.


Practically Perfect Computer Card

An EOMA68-compatible computer card with an Allwinner A20 dual core processor, 2 GB of RAM, and 8 GB of NAND flash pre-installed with the Debian GNU/Linux operating system.


Numero Uno Computer Card

An EOMA68-compatible computer card with an Allwinner A20 dual core processor, 2 GB of RAM, and 8 GB of NAND flash pre-installed with the Devuan GNU/Linux operating system.


Getting Ahead Computer Card

An EOMA68-compatible computer card with an Allwinner A20 dual core processor, 2 GB of RAM, and 8 GB of NAND flash pre-installed with the Fedora 24 GNU/Linux operating system.


Micro Desktop Housing for Computer Card

This is a Micro Desktop base unit and power supply unit with a beautiful laser-cut stack of 3mm plywood panels that creates an aesthetically attractive tiny base unit for your Computer Cards. Excludes Computer Card, keyboard, mouse and VGA monitor.


PIY Laptop Housing Kit for Computer Card

This Print-It-Yourself (PIY) kit includes all the parts, cabling and boards (main, power, and controller, assembled and tested), and battery, charger, keyboard, LCD, and CTP-LCD for trackpad that are needed to build a complete Libre Laptop once you 3D print the enclosure from the freely available GPLv3+ licensed plans. Excludes Computer Card.


PFY Laptop Housing Kit for Computer Card

This Printed-For-You (PFY) kit has everything needed to create a full EOMA68 Laptop, including a 3D printed set of casework parts, bamboo plywood panels, tested and assembled PCBs, cables, battery, charger, keyboard, LCD, and CTP-LCD for trackpad. Available in a variety of colors and materials. Excludes Computer Card.


Completely Assembled Laptop + Computer Card

A meticulously hand-assembled and fully-tested laptop. Includes your choice of EOMA68-A20 Computer Card and 3D-printed casework.


PCMCIA/EOMA68 Breakout Board

One PCMCIA/EOMA68 Breakout Board with one surface mount PCMCIA header, and tracks to some convenient 2.54-mm-spaced through-holes. Added by popular demand, for access, tinkering, development work, testing, etc.


Pass-through Card

A simple card that takes in HDMI and USB and passes them on. Turns a Laptop Housing into a portable, battery-powered dock for your smartphone, USB-HDMI dongle computer, and tablet, or a second screen, keyboard, and mouse for your existing laptop or desktop PC.


USB + HDMI Cable Set for Standalone Operation

Includes a Micro HDMI Type D cable and 3-way USB-OTG Host-Charger cable tested and known to work with EOMA68 Computer Cards. These are the cables you need to run a Computer Card as a standalone device without the need for a housing. Also useful with the Micro Desktop or Laptop Housing to add a second screen and extra USB port.



We make the modular, upgradable, Earth-friendly EOMA68 laptop.

Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton


Christopher Waid


See Also

Subscribe to the Crowd Supply newsletter, highlighting the latest creators and projects: