Last updated: 3 May 2005

Subject:	Meade LPI under Linux
Sent:	Friday, April 29, 2005 11:50:46
From:	Jasem Mutlaq (
Thanks for the most wonderful site. My email is a feedback for this:

I'd appreciate it if you can post my email there so that it might be
useful to others.


I have even better news for Linux users with Meade LPI out there. I just
added Video 4 Linux 2 support to KStars. I haven't tested KStars with
LPI simply because I don't own one, but I'll appreciate any feedback.

You need to check out the CVS version of KStars. Instructions here:

You will need KDE 3.4 (with sources) installed, and fairly recent kernel
(> 2.6.9). It's better off to have a new distribution like SUSE 9.3
which has everything in it.

Assuming you compiled and ran the latest KStars, you can connect to your
Meade LPI by going to the Devices Menu ---> Device Manager, and then
select "Generic Video4Linux". Click on "Start service", then check out
your Meade LPI in the INDI Control Panel.

You might also want to check out the INDI website which I currently

For any comments, problems, or suggestions, please email us at
(kstars-devel AT kde DOT org) or me directly (mutlaqja AT ikarustech DOT


End of today's update
Subject:	LPI under Linux
Sent:	Saturday, January 22, 2005 03:09:14
From:	Patrick ZIMA
I do have some very good news for all the LPI users out there, that want
to use their device under linux.

Maybe you can start a "hot topic" for this - to keep the community
finding more solutions and software for this

So far I've only figured out, which driver to use - and I know it is
working. I am now on a journey to find software, that supports V4L2
(Video4Linux2) and all or most of the features that the LPI migth offer.
So far I've tried kstars (comes with KDE-Desktop) - which unfortunateley
does not seem to support Video4Linux2 (only Video4Linux1) ???!?

Here now is a brief description, of what is needed in order to make it
run. I have to admit, that this is not for plain linux-newby's - even
though they might well be successful.

(my system currently is:
Compaq EvoN800v, P4-M 1,6 GHz, 1Gig ram. Linux Gentoo 2004.2 Stage1 -
kernel 2.6.10-r1 - everything synced to the latest versions)

Linux Kernel 2.6.10 or later is required - as this driver only supports
V4L2 (not V4L1 - Video4Linux).

Configure the kernel to make USB work (once you've managed to use
USB-mice you are there)

Now find and enable the following (built-in or as module - what ever)

"Device drivers->Multimedia devices->(*)Video for Linux"
"Device drivers->USB support->(*)USB SN9C10x PC Camera Controller support"

Now build the kernel and update the modules
after the system is up - plug in the LPI

After a view seconds type in "dmesg" and try to find something like:

   usb 2-1: new full speed USB device using ohci_hcd and address 3
   sn9c102: V4L2 driver for SN9C10x PC Camera Controllers v1:1.24
   usb 2-1: SN9C10[12] PC Camera Controller detected (vid/pid 0x0C45/0x602A)
   usb 2-1: HV7131D image sensor detected
   usb 2-1: Initialization succeeded
   usb 2-1: V4L2 device registered as /dev/video0
   usb 2-1: Optional device control through 'sysfs' interface ready
   usbcore: registered new driver sn9c102

The line
   usb 2-1: V4L2 device registered as /dev/video0

Is very important - as it means, you have a device-class for your LPI
registerd by the kernel

If you want to use the LPI not only as root, than you might need to
change the ownership for /dev/video0

(that is actually a symbolic link to /dev/v4l/video0 so change
permissions/ownership for that instead)

Now you want to test the LPI. This is what I did:

and download

Now read the README - I had to install Image-Magick and the SDL-Library

After that I compiled the think with a simple "make" - that produced a
"webcam" executable.

Now try to run this "webcam" - and you will get the live-picture from
the LPI !!!!

(If you get errors here such as "cannot connect to the display" - then
try to issue a "xhost +" in your/a kde-console (this is to allow other
users - such as root - access the display) that should work.

Now, if you find useful applikations - such as astrostacking software
and such, keep us informed

Have fun, keep going - and bright nights
And more:
The default sn9c10x driver that comes with kernel 2.6.9 or 2.6.10 is too
old. The newer version 1.24 is neede (I suppose, the old driver is
working, but the newer one has better support for teh controller & cmos
that is used in the LPI).

1.24 can be optained at (the
original kerneldriver is version 1.19)

Return to the top of this page.

Go back to the Astrophotography Page.

Go back to my ETX Home Page.

Copyright ©2005 Michael L. Weasner /
Submittal Copyright © 2005 by the Submitter