Saturday, July 9, 2016

Tuning Toughbook CF-20

All black Panasonic Toughbook CF-20 

Here goes few pictures of my tuned up Panasonic Toughbook CF-20. After installing Linux on this, I see this to be ready for any professional tasking.

This black back turned out to be pretty nice, hiding brand and model - but making it unique from outside. Highly recommend this modification.

Few pictures of connectors at side of tablet part of computer and keyboard base:

Early verdict on CF-20 running Linux

After few days with Toughbook CF-20, here goes initial impressions running this thing with Linux.  

First - even when this device is small, it makes form factor to very pleasing to move and travel with. I managed to attach camera strap on display for easy carry. There is actually two different position where this kind of strap can be attached.

Secondly I applied some black sticker on back of display, hiding that all silver color of original back and Panasonic Toughbook logo's. Mainly I do this because reflections to my vehicle windows when using in drive situations. And top of all, I was very pleased how it makes this device look like in total.

-> Will update picture of that new black later today.


This small laptop has more interfaces I could ever imagine. First time I have thing where I can have two wired LAN ports available. HDMI and VGA is there as RS-232 with 9-pin D-connector(!). USB's, SD and MicroSD card readers included as well (yes, two of those!).

I can hardly wait to get this thing side of Mac Powerbook user (with single USB C in that).


Travel ahead 

I am looking to take some serious travel with CF-20 in coming weekend. 

I've done these trips before with CF-54, which is good workstation for developer, but this time I check can I manage with smaller one. From this, that strap alone for carrying computer has been only thing which I've missed on my CF-54. Carrying it always with an handle takes one hand away.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Toughbook CF-20 with Linux

Toughbook CF-20 arrived and no Windows on this one. Installed Ubuntu 16.04 to test latest hardware with latest software and it worked.

First some quick specifications of CF-20:
  • Intel® Core™ m5 vPro™ processor 
  • 8GB RAM and 256 GB SSD hard disk
  • 10.1" digitizer touch screen with 1920x1200 resolution
  • Awesome amount of interfaces
  • LTE module (1199:9041 Sierra Wireless, Inc.)
USB device ID's for touch and LTE:

ID 5986:0656 Acer, Inc
ID 5986:0689 Acer, Inc
ID 056a:0148 Wacom Co., Ltd
ID 0eef:c066 D-WAV Scientific Co., Ltd 

ID 10c4:ea60 Cygnal Integrated Products, Inc. CP210x UART Bridge / myAVR mySmartUSB light
Bus 001 Device 004: ID 0424:2744 S

ID 1199:9041 Sierra Wireless, Inc.

First impressions

First this device is small. Almost too small to do every day computing (which is mainly development work for me). 10.1" display with 1900 x 1200 resolution makes it pretty small print. Zooming comes in handy almost in every program. I've defaulted DPI value a bit up to make menus and icons bit larger.

I will head up to LTE configuration and update here how it goes. First Panasonic Toughbook with MicroSIM on LTE module.

UPDATE: LTE Works just fine. Network manager tweak applied and everything works.

I would say that Panasonic Toughbooks have been one of the most Linux friendly computers which I've played with. 

Sunday, May 22, 2016

OPSEC With Panasonic CF-54

Been traveling a lot and my Toughbook CF-54 has been serving good. Since projects we do are mostly confidential for specific customers working in intelligence sector - we are always taking OPSEC pretty seriously.

One feature I could not live without is removable hard drives. Every time I have to leave my laptop behind, I extract HD to carry along. This makes machine in hotel room total brick for anyone interested.

And yes, I have not booted Windows since '90's. That's another OPSEC tip. 

Friday, April 22, 2016

Panasonic CF-54 with ubuntu 16.04

Did some upgrades to 16.04. Found out that LTE module (1199:9041 Sierra Wireless, Inc.) in CF54 needs to be reconfigured.

Here's how:

Add /etc/modprobe.d/ncm.conf with following (and reboot):

options cdc_ncm prefer_mbim=N

This makes network manager able to see and configure your LTE.