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SheevaPlug (resting on external drive enclosure)
TypePlug computer
Release dateMarch 2009 (2009-03)
Operating systemUbuntu 9.04
CPU1.2 GHz ARM Marvell Kirkwood 88F6281 (ARM9E)
Memory512 MB SDRAM, 512 MB Flash
StorageExternal hard drive/SDIO card/flash disk
ConnectivityUSB 2.0, SD slot, Gigabit Network,
Power2.3 W idle no attached devices, 7.0 W running at 100% CPU utilization
Dimensions110 x 69.5 x 48.5 (mm)

The SheevaPlug is a "plug computer" designed to allow standard computing features in as small a space as possible. It was a small embedded Linux ARM computer without a display which can be considered an early predecessor to the subsequent Raspberry Pi.

As one of the first such computers on the market, the device has a 1.2 GHz Marvell Kirkwood 6281 ARM-compatible CPU, a.k.a. Feroceon. It is sold with Ubuntu Linux version 9.04 pre-installed.[1] A software development kit for the platform is also available.

Commercial products[edit]

The following commercial products are known to be based on the SheevaPlug platform:

  • BarracudaDrive is a free Cloud Server for the SheevaPlug.[2]
  • CTERA CloudPlug by CTERA Networks, a plug computer providing remote backup service at local disk speeds and overlays a file sharing service.[3][4][5]
  • TonidoPlug from CodeLathe, a SheevaPlug-based device that runs Tonido home server and NAS software, and allows users to access, share and sync files and media.[6]
  • Pogoplug by Cloud Engines, a device that lets users access their files at home over the Internet without leaving a PC on.[7][8][9][10]
  • Seagate FreeAgent DockStar and Black Armor 110/220 NAS, both a variant of the Pogoplug.
  • GuruPlug, a SheevaPlug with additional connectivity options.
  • DreamPlug, similar to a GuruPlug+
  • The PylonPlug by Equelex. A one interface OpenWrt device that when used in conjunction with a VLAN (IEEE 802.1Q) capable network switch, can be used as a Multi-WAN network router. Its operating system is OpenWrt Linux[11]
  • The sipJack from pbxnsip is a Sheeva kit-based plug computer and provides Voice over IP services and PBX features.
  • The WeatherHub2 by Ambient Weather, a server that collects data from a weather station and uploads data to Web pages or other Internet services.[12]
  • The GeNiJack by NETCOR. An endpoint for end-to-end network performance assessment.[13]
  • BACnet Gateway by Kara Systems, a M-Bus, Modbus and OneWire gateway which represents a BACNet Device[14]
  • Pwnie Express is a Computer Security tool.[15]
  • AvaGigE by Avantes, USB to Ethernet converter which supports the connection of Avantes spectrometers to an Ethernet network.[16]
  • Evercube, a do-it-yourself home server, designed for quiet, continuous operation in the living room[17]
  • Lockitron server for remote operation of locks—with key management. Control server based on the SheevaPlug.
  • Iomega iConnect, a wireless, diskless NAS
  • ZigBee Gateway ZBG-100 from pikkerton[18]
  • Pwn Plug by Pwnie Express

Other operating system ports and stacks[edit]

  • FreedomBox, for secured, encrypted and fully decentralized networking based on Debian
  • Debian has official support for the SheevaPlug and other plug computers, such as the GuruPlug.
  • Mark Gillespie has created scripts to build and install Debian Lenny and Squeeze onto either the internal NAND or SD card[19]
  • An ARM port of Fedora exists that can be installed on the SheevaPlug.[20]
  • Raúl Porcel has managed to run Gentoo on the plug and published an instruction on how to do so.[21]
  • Stuart Winter has a working Slackware port.[22] This is the official port of Slackware version 13.1 to ARM. Slackware for ARM now officially supports SheevaPlug.[23]
  • Inferno boots on the SheevaPlug.[24]
  • Plan 9 supports SheevaPlug (and other Kirkwood-based systems) in its official distribution.[25]
  • SheevaPlug is supported on NetBSD 6.0[26] and FreeBSD 8.0[27][28] or newer.
  • OpenWrt supported[29]
  • NixOS (SVN trunk) supports the SheevaPlug since the last quarter of 2009.[30]
  • Plugbox Linux is an Arch Linux port for SheevaPlug and other plug devices.[31]
  • Amahi is a home file server which has recently been ported to the SheevaPlug and other plug computing devices.[32]
  • Arch Linux ARM ArchLinux for plug computer devices (ARMv5, ARMv6, ARMv7).[33][34]
  • Pathagar Book Server - SheevaPlug Edition is an Open Publication Distribution System OPDS based Book Server running on top of Debian Squeeze.[35]
  • RedSleeve A distribution derived from RHEL ported to ARM (ARMv5, ARMv6, ARMv7).[36]

Variants and modifications[edit]

A version with an eSATA port for connecting a serial ATA hard disk is also available and sometimes referred to as SheevaPlug+. Revision 1.3 of the SheevaPlug can be extended by one ESATA port, but soldering is required and will void the warranty.[37]

Marvell offers a development kit to assist in the development of software for the platform. The kit includes the GCC cross-compiler for ARM. The device includes a mini USB connector wired to an FTDI FT2232 chip which provides the developer's computer with access to two ports, a JTAG port connected to the internal JTAG bus, and an RS-232 port connected to the Kirkwood processor's serial port through which the bootstrap and kernel console can be accessed. This debug console can be accessed from any computer with support for the FTDI bus translator (FreeBSD, Linux, Mac OS X, Windows).[38]


  1. ^ "Sheeva Dev Kit". New IT Limited. Archived from the original on 2018-07-19. Retrieved 2018-07-19.
  2. ^ "BarracudaDrive Cloud Server for the SheevaPlug". Real Time Logic. Retrieved January 1, 2016.
  3. ^ "CTERA Networks Launches, Introduces Cloud Attached Storage" (Press release). Ctera networks. 6 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-25.
  4. ^ Nelson, Fritz (January 11, 2009). CTERA at CES: USB as NAS and Cloud Backup. TechWebTV. Retrieved 2009-01-27.[dead YouTube link]
  5. ^ Lawson, Stephen (January 6, 2009). "Startup Ctera will offer cloud storage through carriers". Network World. Archived from the original on March 3, 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-25.
  6. ^ "What is the TonidoPlug". Tonidoplug.com. Retrieved 2010-08-18.
  7. ^ Clark, Don; Christopher Lawton (2009-01-08). "Gadgets for Leaner Times". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2009-01-27.
  8. ^ Needleman, Rafe (January 7, 2009). "Pogoplug puts any hard drive on the Internet". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-02-25.
  9. ^ Lester, Dave (January 12, 2009). "Consumer electronics: Take a peek at geek chic". The Denver Post. Retrieved 2009-02-25.
  10. ^ Pogoplug brings easy file sharing to your home network. Fast Company. January 7, 2009. Archived from the original on January 16, 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-25.
  11. ^ "equelex products page". Equelex. Archived from the original on July 10, 2011. Retrieved October 28, 2010.
  12. ^ "Ambient Weather WeatherHub2 Universal IP Ethernet Server for Weather Stations". Ambient Weather. Retrieved November 24, 2010.
  13. ^ "Endpoint for end-to-end network performance assessment". NETCOR. Retrieved June 17, 2011.
  14. ^ Kara Systems
  15. ^ "Pwnie Express". Pwnie Express. 2011-07-21. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
  16. ^ AvaGigE
  17. ^ Evercube
  18. ^ "ZigBee-Gateway ZBG-100". pikkerton. Retrieved 2012-10-20.
  19. ^ "Debian On SheevaPlug Script". Archived from the original on 2009-12-15. Retrieved 2009-11-17.
  20. ^ "Fedora ARM port main page".
  21. ^ "Gentoo on the Marvell SheevaPlug". Raúl Porcel. 2009-04-16. Archived from the original on 2009-09-30. Retrieved 2009-09-21.
  22. ^ "Slackware Linux for ARM". Archived from the original on 2004-04-22. Retrieved 2009-07-19.
  23. ^ "Slackware Officially Supported Devices". Retrieved 2014-04-30.
  24. ^ "inferno-kirkwood". Project Hosting on Google Code. Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  25. ^ "/sys/src/9/kw". Retrieved 2010-05-13.
  26. ^ "NetBSD CVS commit for Sheevaplug". Retrieved 2012-03-18.
  27. ^ "FreeBSD for Marvell ARM". Retrieved 2009-09-24.
  28. ^ "FreeBSD for Kirkwood". Retrieved 2010-08-17.
  29. ^ "OpenWrt on Seagete Dockstar". Retrieved 2013-05-12.
  30. ^ "Multiplatform NixOS". Nix Wiki. nixos.org. 2009-12-20. Retrieved 2010-08-18.
  31. ^ "Portal:PlugBox Linux". PlugApps. 2010-08-04. Retrieved 2010-08-18.
  32. ^ "Amahi for the Marvell Plug Computer released!". Retrieved 2010-08-17.
  33. ^ ArchLinuxARM
  34. ^ ArchLinuxARM on a DockStar (French blog)
  35. ^ Pathagar Book Server - SheevaPlug Edition
  36. ^ RedSleeve
  37. ^ "howto upgrade the SheevaPlug with ESATA". W-Mark Kubacki. 2010-04-18. Archived from the original on 2012-07-12. Retrieved 2010-04-18.
  38. ^ "SheevaPlug Development Kit Readme file" (PDF).[permanent dead link]

External links[edit]