Raspberry Pi Lab

Tag: Raspbian

RPi Keeps Crashing

by on Apr.12, 2014, under Troubleshooting

I have been having issues with the RPi staying online.

My setup is a RPi Model B with a WiFi antanea attached and powered by a 1A wall wort.  There is no keyboard, mouse, or video attached.  All access to the RPi is done over SSH.

The RPi will stay online for aprox. one to three hours then disappear from the network.  Powering off for a hard re-boot would bring it back.  However, one to three hours and we’d have to repeat.  Not acceptable.  Eventually, the constant crashing did corrupt the image on the SD card.

After speaking with some geek friends and consulting Google, I believe the issue is the WiFi adpater.  I believe the WiFi adapter is drawing just enough off the USB to cause power related stability issues.

For now, I have disconnected the WiFi and attached the RPi directly to the network via RJ-45.  After flashing an SD card with a new Raspbian image, the RPi is up and has beed stable for the best part of 24 hours.

When I get ready to do some more testing, I’m going to attach the WiFi via an external, powered USB hub.  This should allow the WiFi adapter to draw sufficient power without having to depend on the RPi for its power source.

More to come…


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NOT A Hardware Problem

by on Dec.29, 2013, under Installation, Troubleshooting

I, now, know for certain that my problem is NOT hardware.

I loaded Raspbian on an SD card and modified the /boot/config.txt file to enable  the force VGA option.  So the display “works.”  The resolution and alignment aren’t right, but I’ll work on tweaking that out.

When I get it working correctly, I’ll post my /boot/config.txt file.


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Which Linux Distro?

by on Dec.25, 2013, under Operating Systems

Well, with Linux, there is not one right answer.  The only that that is for certain is that the Linux distro chosen must be for an ARM processor.  That means my personal favorite desktop and server distro, Ubuntu, is out of the running.

But there are good options.

The absolute best option would be Gentoo.  Start from the absolute bare bottom and custom compile the entire operating system specifically for the piece of hardware on which it is running.  While that would be the best option, I don’t have the time or desire to spend hours (perhaps days) tweaking, compiling, and re-compiling absolutely everything, so Gentoo isn’t an option for me.  At least not right now.

The Raspberry Pi Foundation recommends a customized variant of Debian Linux they call Raspbian Linux.  It is a distro specifically optimized for the Raspberry Pi.  Sounds like a good option.

However, Ada Fruit recommends a Raspbian variant she calls Occidentalis Linux.  It is a Raspbian base that has been further optimized and tweaked for building and controlling your own DIY circuits.

So, If you are going to build something that doesn’t require controlling an external circuit, then go with Raspbian.  But I want to build stuff, so I am going to start with Occidentalis Linux.

Tell me about the distro you use and why you chose it.


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