Snappy Things


A while back, Snappy was introduced and it was great, while that was happening we were already working on the next great thing, Snappy for devices, or as everyone calls it, things.

Today that was finally announced. It’s been lots of fun working on this. Enablement aside, we also created a very minimal webdm, it is a Web Device Management snap framework provided in the store which can be easily installed on existing devices by calling

sudo snappy install webdm

On networks where it is allowed, it can be accessed by going to http://webdm.local:4200. Here’s a quick demo of it running on a BeagleBone Black

So to get this going, all you need is to follow what is mentioned in the main site and pop that sdcard into the device

wget  http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/ubuntu-core/preview/ubuntu-core-WEBDM-alpha-02_armhf-bbb.img.xz
unxz ubuntu-core-WEBDM-alpha-02_armhf-bbb.img.xz
dd if=ubuntu-core-WEBDM-alpha-02_armhf-bbb.img of=/dev/sdXXX bs=32M

The alternative way is to use ubuntu-device-flash to create such image, you can get it easily for Ubuntu by adding our tools ppa

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:snappy-dev/beta
sudo apt update
sudo apt install snappy-tools

And then move on to building your image, this is what I do:

ubuntu-device-flash --verbose core --channel ubuntu-core/devel-proposed --output snappy-core.img --size 10 --developer-mode --install webdm_0.1_multi.snap --install beagleboneblack.element14_1.0_all.snap

The install option is basically an option to install snaps during provisioning; you may notice this weird one beagleboneblack.element14_1.0_all.snap, that is an oem snap and in summary, it’s similar to the customization framework in Ubuntu Touch, but different. today it’s pretty minimal and allows to just set the branding text either as can be seen on the video or at the login prompt, where you would see something like this:

(BeagleBoneBlack)ubuntu@localhost:~$

More on the oem part later.

Happy sapping!

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