OpenWrt 21.02 released with WPA3, HTTPS, TLS enabled by default

OpenWrt 21.02

OpenWrt 21.02 has just been released with higher security with WPA3, HTTPS & TLS enabled by default, as well as initial support for the Distributed Switch Architecture (DSA), the Linux standard for configurable Ethernet switches. OpenWrt is the most popular open-source Linux distribution for routers and entry-level Linux-capable embedded systems, and the latest release includes over 5800 commits since the release of OpenWrt 19.07 in January 2020. WPA3 was already supported in OpenWrt 19.07, but not enabled by default,  OpenWrt 20.02 changes that, together with TLS thanks to trusted CA certificates from Mozilla. That means LuCi interface, wget, opkg package manager can all support HTTPS out-of-the-box. Note that HTTPS redirection can be disabled for LuCI in the configuration files. Another security change is that SELinux is now supported by OpenWrt, but not enabled by default. OpenWrt 21.02’s DSA implementation replaces the current swconfig system, but not all targets have been […]

Armbian 21.08 for Arm boards ships with latest Linux 5.10 LTS

Armbian 21.08

Armbian provides stable releases four times a year, and Armbian 21.08 has just been released offering minimal, server or XFCE, Cinnamon and Budgie desktop Linux 5.10 LTS images for Arm boards, as well as a build system to customize your own image. If you’ve been using an Arm SBC that is NOT a Raspberry Pi board, you’ve probably been told to use Armbian, as the community is providing Debian and Ubuntu images for over 100 Arm boards that are either “Supported”, “WIP” (suitable for testing), or “CSC” (no official support, aka you’re on your own). Armbian 21.08 highlights (Note: EDGE are daily builds following daily builds of the Linux kernel and fresh packages from Debian sid, Ubuntu 21.04 “hirsute” or Ubuntu 21.10 “impish” userland): Based on Linux 5.10.59 released on August 15, 2021 Minimal, server or XFCE, Cinnamon, and Budgie desktop Fast automated language selection on the first run Regular […]

LibreELEC 10.0 minimal Linux OS for media playback released with Kodi 19.1

LibreELEC 10.0

While most TV boxes and SBCs nowadays ship with or support a version of Android, people who just want the best viewing experience may prefer to switch to a Linux distribution such as LibreELEC or CoreELEC. The good news is that LibreELEC 10.0 has just been released with Kodi 19.1 and Linux 5.10 LTS. LibreELEC 10.0 is said to work well for Allwinner, Rockchip, and “Generic” Intel/AMD devices, while the Raspberry Pi 4 release’s codebase is rather new, and there may still be a few rough edges. Support for the previous generation Raspberry Pi boards has been dropped, and there’s no support for Amlogic platforms as CoreELEC already provides good support. Since LibreELEC 10.0 is based on Kodi 19.1, it benefits from the same features as Kodi 19 “Matrix” release including AV1 video decoding, a new skin, HDR support, and more. LibreELEC 10.1 support a wide range of single board […]

Overview and List of System-on-Module and Computer-on-Module Standards – Q7, SMARC, COM HPC, and More

QSeven_vs_SMARC

A System-on-Module (SoM), also known as a Computer-on-Module (CoM), is a small board with the key components of a computer such as SoC, memory, and possibly others components such as PMIC (Power Management IC), an Ethernet PHY, as well as one or more connectors used to connect to a baseboard, also called carrier board, which features standard ports such as Ethernet (RJ45), USB ports, SATA, power jack and so on. The advantages of using of baseboard + SoM design compared to a single board are at least twofold: Most of the PCB design complexity is often around the CPU/SoC and high-speed buses connected to the CPU/SoC. So you could buy an SoM, design your own baseboard and get a complete design relatively in a short amount of time, with reduced development resources and costs. The design is modular, so you could easily upgrade from one SoM to another one. For […]

ROCK 3A SBC brings M.2 slots for NVMe SSD, WiFi 6 to Raspberry Pi form factor

ROCK 3A

Radxa ROCK 3A is a single board computer powered by Rockchip RK3568 quad-core Cortex-A55 processor that closely follows Raspberry Pi 3 Model B form factor like the early Rock Pi 4 SBC, but with a twist. By switching from a Rockchip RK3399 to a Rockchip RK3568,  the board loses some CPU and GPU performance, but gains extra I/Os with enabled the company to add an additional M.2 slot with PCIe to ROCK 3A board, meaning it’s now possible to attach one NVMe SSD and another M.2 module like a WiFi 6 M.2 card. ROCK 3A preliminary specifications: SoC – Rockchip RK3568 quad-core Cortex A55 processor at up to 2GHz, with Mali G52 GPU, 0.8TOPS NPU System Memory – 2GB, 4GB, 8GB LPDDR4 3200MT/s, up to 1560MHz Storage Pluggable eMMC module MicroSD card slot M.2 M key socket for NVMe with PCIe 3.0 x2 lanes 4MB SPI flash with support for […]

Radxa Zero SBC – A powerful quad-core alternative to Raspberry Pi Zero W

Radxa Zero

Radxa Zero SBC follows Raspberry Pi Zero W form factor, but thanks to an Amlogic S905Y2 quad-core Cortex-A53 processor clocked at up to 2.0 GHz offers much higher performance, which Radxa says corresponds to about 70% of Raspberry Pi 4 CPU performance. The tiny Arm Linux board comes with up to 4GB RAM, 16GB eMMC flash, and either AP6212 or AP6256 wireless module. plus all interfaces from Raspberry Pi Zero W, but with a twist as the mini HDMI port is replaced by a micro HDMI port, and USB-C ports are used instead of micro USB ports. Radxa Zero preliminary specifications: SoC – Amlogic S905Y2 quad-core Cortex-A53 processor @ up to 2.0 GHz with Arm Mali-G31 MP2 GPU System Memory – 512MB RAM, 1GB, 2GB, or 4GB LPDDR4 Storage – MicroSD slot, optional 8GB or 16GB eMMC flash Video Output – micro HDMI port up to 4Kp60 Connectivity Ampak AP6212 […]

Rock Pi 4 Plus SBC gets Rockchip OP1 processor, eMMC flash pre-loaded with Twister OS Armbian

Rock Pi 4B Plus

The low-cost Rock Pi 4 SBC was unveiled in 2018 with a Rockchip RK3399 processor, up to 4GB RAM, and Raspberry Pi 3 form factor. Rock Pi 4 Plus builds on the relatively popular single board computer with an upgrade to Rockchip OP1 processor, which is a higher performance RK3399 SoC typically used in Chromebooks and ASUS Tinker Board 2. The new board also adds 16 to 128 GB eMMC flash, instead of relying on an optional eMMC module, and will come pre-loaded with Twister OS Armbian lightweight desktop OS based upon Armbian Focal 20.04.1 LTS (aarch64) for Rockchip RK3399-based SBCs. Four variants of Rock Pi 4 Plus share most of the same specifications: SoC – Rockchip OP1 big.LITTLE hexa-core processor with  2x Arm Cortex-A72 @ up to 2.0 GHz, 4x Cortex-A53 @ up to 1.4 GHz, a Mali-T864 GPU with support OpenGL ES1.1/2.0/3.0/3.1, OpenVG1.1, OpenCL, DX11, and AFBC, and […]

The 5 best Intel & AMD single board computers for makers

Best Intel AMD single board computers for makers

A few weeks ago, we wrote a list of what we consider to be the top 5 most powerful Arm SBC’s and development kits, and this time around we’ll cover x86 SBC’s powered by Intel or AMD processors. But this time around, instead of focusing on the most powerful x86 single board computers which would lead to unaffordable, industrial Xeon SBC’s, we’ll be looking into the 5 best boards designed for makers. That means affordable pricing, I/O headers, and community support. The list is in no particular order. Rock Pi X – x86 on the cheap If you ever wanted the cheapest possible x86 board, Atomic Pi SBC $35 price tag was hard to beat, but it was only cheap because it was sourced from a failed robotics project, and not very convenient to use. But now in 2021, the cheapest x86 SBC that can run Windows is clearly Rock […]