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Posts Tagged ‘raspberry pi’

Meet the Blue Version of Raspberry Pi 3 Board, For Brazil Only

November 16th, 2017 3 comments

It’s always fun to buy electronics and gadgets from China, while there are sometimes technical “headaches”, they are mostly solvable and part of the fun. But in some cases, government regulations and customs ruin the party even before you get the device.  Most of the time, it’s just in the form of unexpected custom duties, but other times, you may get a phone call asking you to get some documents… With experience, I’ve learned to give up at that point, but I tried one before… The courier will usually not tell you exactly what you need, just some clues, so I’ll have to make a few phone calls… After 8 phone calls to different government officers, I discovered that I needed a document saying I do not need document… Hooray! But sadly, it could not be done over the phone, online, or by snail mail, I would have to go to some government office in person 700 km away. I estimated the total cost would be around $300 with uncertain results, so I gave up, and the device went to “customs heaven”.

The regulations vary from country to country, and in the past, I’ve read stories about outrageous custom duties in Brazil. More recently (today), I’ve also learned many electronics items required Anatel product homologation, some sort of telecommunications license, since the country does not recognize FCC/CE regulations.

Click to Enlarge

While it would be an impossible tasks for individuals to obtain this kind of compliance, you’d think companies should have a fairly easy time. Apparently not, as the Raspberry Pi Foundation has just announced an Anatel compliant Raspberry Pi 3 board, that’s exactly the same as the original Raspberry Pi 3 board launched in February 2016, except for having a Blue PCB, and a marking with ANATEL ID: 04908-17-10629.

The board is sold in Brazil only via FilepeFlop for 199.90 reals (around $60), a bit higher than in most countries due to fairly high custom duties. If you live outside of Brazil, and would like to add the board to your collection, the only options would be to go to Brazil, ask a friend in Brazil (provided he/she can ship it out of the country), and use some expensive virtual address/forwarding services.

Linux 4.14 Release – Main Changes, ARM & MIPS Architecture

November 13th, 2017 6 comments

Linus Torvalds has announced the release of Linux 4.14:

No surprises this week, although it is probably worth pointing out how the 0day robot has been getting even better (it was very useful before, but Fengguang has been working on making it even better, and reporting the problems it has found).

Sure, some of the new reports turned out to be just 0day doing things that just don’t work (ie KASAN with old gcc versions, but also doing things like loading old ISA drivers in situations that just don’t make sense – remember when you couldn’t even ask if the hardware existed or not, and just had to know), but even then it’s been all good.

The appended shortlog is obviously only for the (small) haul since rc8, and it really is tiny. Not very many commits, and they are small. The biggest thing that stands out in the diffstat is the “leaking_addresses” perl script, which is actually under active development, but I put the first version in for 4.14 just so that people could see that initial state and start looking at the end result and perhaps ask themselves “should my code make these kernel addresses visible to user space”.

The actual changes will hopefully start percolating into 4.15, with one notable likely early change (which has been discussed extensively on the list) being to just hash any “%p” addresses by default. We used to have strict modes that just zeroed the address out, but that was actually counter-productive, in that often people use the address as a “kernel object identity” for debugging (or for cross-correlation -think network sockets), and so just clearing the pointer value makes those kinds of uses pointless. But using a secure hash allows for those kinds of identity uses, while not actually leaking the address itself.

(Other situations where the actual address is relevant then need other approaches – we’ll be restricting /proc/kallsyms only to entities that actually need them etc etc).

Anyway, apart from that one script, the rest of it really is one-liners or “few-liners”.

The most noticeable last-minute change is probably that we had to revert the code that showed a good MHz value in /proc/cpuinfo even for the modern “CPU picks frequency dynamically” case. It worked fine, but it was much too expensive on machines with tens or hundreds of CPU cores. There’s a cunning plan, but it didn’t make 4.14, so we’ll get it working and then back-port.

Anything else is pretty esoteric, you can just read the changelog..

And with this, the merge window for 4.15 is obviously open. As mentioned in the late rc announcements, the extra week for rc8 means that now Thanksgiving week ends up happening during the second half of the merge window, and I’ll be off on a family vacation.

We’ll see how that goes.

I might decide that I’ll extend the merge window if I feel that I can’t be responsive enough.

Or maybe you guys won’t even notice, because I _will_ have my laptop and Internet access.

Or maybe I will just decide that 4.14 was a painful release, and any late stragglers for 4.15 are not worth _another_ painful release, and I’ll just say “tough luck, you were late to the merge window, and I felt more like being out in the sun than taking your second-week pull request”.

Because it really would be lovely to have a smaller and calmer release for 4.15.

Anyway, go out and test the new 4.14 release, that is slated to be the next LTS kernel – and start sending me pull request for the 4.15 merge window.

Linux 4.13 brought us new features such as support for non-blocking buffered I/O operations at the block level, AppArmor security module’s “domain labeling” code, kernel-based TLS implementation for better performance, and CIFS/SAMBA default change to v3.0 for better security, among many other changes.

Some newsworthy changes in Linux 4.14 include:

  • Bigger memory limits – x86-64 used to be limited by 4-level paging to 256 TiB of virtual address space and 64 TiB of physical address space. Some vendors already reached the limit with servers equipped with 64 TiB of memory, so support for 5-level paging has been introduced, increasing the limits to 128 PiB of virtual address space and 4 PiB of physical address space.
  • Added AMD Secure Memory Encryption – Secure Memory Encryption can be used to protect the contents of DRAM from physical attacks on the system. Read LWN article or AMD whitepaper for details.
  • Better kernel traces with the ORC unwinder – An “unwinder” is what prints the list of functions (aka. stack trace, callgraph, call stack…) that have been executed before reaching a determinate point of the code. The new unwinder is called ORC (Oops Rewind Capability), works more reliably than the current unwinder, and does not require adding code anywhere, hence having not effect on text size or runtime performance
  • Compression in Btrfs and Squashfszstd compresses at speeds close to lz4 at compression ratio comparable to lzma. Support for zstd compression had been added to both Btrfs and Squash. See benchmarks in commit messages for Btrsfs and Squashfs.
  • Zero-copy from user memory to sockets – The MSG_ZEROCOPY socket flag enables zero copy mechanism to common socket send calls. It is generally only effective at writes over around 10 KB. Checkout the documentation for more details.

Linux 4.14 will be a long term support kernel with 6-year of support, so it will be found in devices for the years to come.

The ARM architecture has gone through many changes as per usual. Here’s a non-exhaustive list of changes:

  • Allwinner:
    • Allwinner A10s – HDMI DDC I2C Adapter,HDMI CEC support
    • Allwinner A10/A20 – CCU Clock-ng support
    • Allwinner A64 – SRAM controller driver
    • Allwinner A83T –  SD/MMC support, AXP813 PMIC,USB support
    • Allwinner H3 – I2S support
    • Allwinner R40 –  CCU sunxi-ng style clock driver support,pinctrl support
  • Rockchip
    • Clock driver – Fixes for RK3128, added RK3126 support within RK3128 driver
    • Pinctrl – Rockchip RK3128 subdriver
    • Power domains for Rockchip RK3366
    • New power key driver for Rockchip RK805 PMIC
    • PCI driver – Added Rockchip per-lane PHY support for better power management
    • SPI driver – Explicit support for Rockchip RV1108
    • DRM driver – Added dw_hdmi support for RK3399
    • Added ROCK64 board, RK3399 Sapphire module on Excavator carrier-board, and Theobroma Systems RK3399-Q7 SoM
    • Device tree changes:
      • pinctrl typos
      • keep-power-in-suspend in non-sdio nodes
      • removal of the deprecated num-slots property from dwmmc nodes.
      • RK3328 – support for spdif, io-domains and usb (including enablement of usb on the evaluation board)
      • RK3368 – support for spdif.
      • RK3399 – pcie changes, support for the mali gpu, a new power-domain, sdmmc support on the firefly board and dynamic-power-coefficients.
      • Removal of the deprectated num-slots property from all Rockchip dw-mmc nodes
      • RV1108 – support for sd-cards on the evaluation board
      • RK3288 – EVB gains support saradc and the adc-key, mali gpu enabled in some boards (fennec, evb, tinker).
      • RK3228/RK3229 – Support for efuse, sdmmc, sdio, io-domans and spdif; separate rk3229.dtsi;  The evaluation board also gets regulators, io-domains, emmc, tsadc keys
  • Amlogic
    • Clock driver – Added gxbb CEC32 and sd_emmc clocks, meson8b reset controller
    • SoC info driver – “Amlogic SoCs have a SoC information register for SoC type, package type and revision information. This patchs adds support for this register decoding and exposing with the SoC bus infrastructure”
    • Added Amlogic Meson AO CEC Controller driver
    • Device tree changes:
      • Updates for new MMC driver features/fixes, support for high-speed modes
      • Clock updates
      • Add GPIO line names to a few boards
      • Update clock controler for use as reset controller
  • Samsung
    • Clock driver – suspend fix for Samsung Exynos SoCs where we need to keep clks on across suspend
    • Samsung Exynos5420/5422/5800 audio fixes
    • S3C24xx platform – Cleanup from non-existent CONFIG entries, fix unmet NET dependency when H1940 bluetooth chip is selected
    • Pinctrl driver – Fix NULL pointer dereference on S3C24XX, fix invalid register offset used for external interrupts on Exynos5433, consolidate between drivers and bindings the defines for pin mux functions, minor code improvements
    • Samsung DTS ARM64 changes
      • Remove deprecated and unneeded properties from Exynos boards.
      • Implement proper (working) support for USB On-The-Go on Exynos5433 TM2/TM2E boards.
    • Samsung defconfig changes
      • Enable some drivers useful on our boards (communication: Bluetooth, WiFi, NFC, USB; codepages and crypto algorithms).
      • Enable debugging and lock testing options.
  • Qualcomm
    • IPQ8074 – Added SoC & HK01 board support, PCI driver
    • APQ8016 – Force USB host mode; jack detection support in ASoC
    • MSM8916 – Updated coresight nodes, added GPU, IOMMU, Venus video codec, and CEC clock nodes
    • MSM8996 – Add  support for USB, PCIE phy, RPM/GLink, and modem SMP2P; SMMU clks
    • Pinctrl driver – Qualcomm APQ8064 can handle general purpose clock muxing
    • NAND driver – Various fixes
    • Qualcomm GLINK SMEM driver – Fix memory leak, and unlock  on error
    • V4l – Update the Qualcomm Camera Subsystem driver document with a media controller pipeline graph diagram, VFE scale and crop modules support, and PIX interface and format conversion support.
    • Added DB820c PM8994 regulator node
    • Add PMI8994 gpios
    • Device tree changes:
      • Fixup XO, timer nodes, and pinctrl on IPQ4019
      • Add IPQ4019 RNG and wifi blocks
      • Update MSM8974 coresight node
      • Add IPQ8074 bindings
  • Mediatek
    • Pinctrl driver – Mediatek MT7623 PCIe mux data fixed up.
    • PCI Driver – Added MediaTek MT2712 and MT7622 support
    • Thermal driver – Added Mediatek thermal driver for mt2712
    • Added support for MediaTek MT2712 SoC and avaluation board
    • New board – Mediatek mt7623-based Banana Pi R2
  • Other new ARM hardware platforms and SoCs:
    • Broadcom – Stingray communication processor, Raspberry Pi Zero W
    • Marvell – ARMADA 8080 SoC
    • Microchip/Atmel – SAMA5D28 SoM1 EK
    • NXP – Toradex Apalis module + Apalis and Ixora carrier boards, Engicam GEAM6UL Starter Kit, Beckhoff CX9020 Embedded PC (i.MX53)
    • Renesas – R-Car D3 board (R8A77995)
    • Storlink/Cortina –
    • Texas Instruments – TI DT76x, TI AM335x Moxa UC-8100-ME-T open platform, TI AM57xx Beaglebone X15 Rev C
    • Uniphier – PXs3 STB SoC and development board
    • ZTE – ZX296718 PCBOX Board

MIPS had a huge changelog this time, summarized below:

  • CM – Rename mips_cm_base to mips_gcr_base; Specify register size when generating accessors; Use BIT/GENMASK for register fields, order & drop shifts; Add cluster & block args to mips_cm_lock_other()
  • CPC – Use common CPS accessor generation macros; Use BIT/GENMASK for register fields, order & drop shifts; Introduce register modify (set/clear/change) ; Use change_*, set_* & clear_* where appropriate, etc…
  • CPS – Read GIC_VL_IDENT directly, not via irqchip driver
  • DMA – Consolidate coherent and non-coherent dma_alloc code, Don’t use dma_cache_sync to implement fd_cacheflush
  • FPU emulation / FP assist code – Corner cases fixes such as NaN propagation and other special input values; Zero bits 32-63 of the result for a CLASS.D instruction; enhanced statics via debugfs; do not use bools for arithmetic. GCC 7.1 moans about this; correct user fault_addr type
  • Generic MIPS
    • Enhancement of stack backtraces
    • Cleanup from non-existing options
    • Handle non word sized instructions when examining frame
    • Fix detection and decoding of ADDIUSP instruction
    • Fix decoding of SWSP16 instruction
    • Refactor handling of stack pointer in get_frame_info
    • Remove unreachable code from force_fcr31_sig()
    • Many more fixes and cleanups
  • GIC – Introduce asm/mips-gic.h with accessor functions; Use new GIC accessor functions in mips-gic-timer; Remove counter access functions from irq-mips-gic.c; Remove gic_read_local_vp_id() from irq-mips-gic.c, etc…
  • microMIPS – Fix microMIPS stack unwinding on big endian systems
  • MIPS-GIC – SYNC after enabling GIC region
  • NUMA – Remove the unused parent_node() macro
  • R6 – Constify r2_decoder_tables; add accessor & bit definitions for GlobalNumber
  • SMP – Constify smp ops, allow boot_secondary SMP op to return errors
  • VDSO – Drop gic_get_usm_range() usage, avoid use of linux/irqchip/mips-gic.h
  • Platform changes
    • Alchemy – Add devboard machine type to cpuinfo, update cpu feature overrides,threaded carddetect irqs for devboards
    • AR7 – allow NULL clock for clk_get_rate
    • BCM63xx – Fix ENETDMA_6345_MAXBURST_REG offset, allow NULL clock for clk_get_rate
    • CI20 – Enable GPIO and RTC drivers in defconfig; add ethernet and fixed-regulator nodes to DTS
    • Generic platform
      • Move Boston and NI 169445 FIT image source to their own files
      • Include asm/bootinfo.h for plat_fdt_relocated()
      • Include asm/time.h for get_c0_*_int()
      • Include asm/bootinfo.h for plat_fdt_relocated()
      • Include asm/time.h for get_c0_*_int()
      • Allow filtering enabled boards by requirements
      • Don’t explicitly disable CONFIG_USB_SUPPORT
      • Bump default NR_CPUS to 16
    • JZ4700 – Probe the jz4740-rtc driver from devicetree
    • Lantiq – Drop check of boot select from the spi-falcon and lantiq-flash MTD drivers, access boot cause register in the watchdog driver through regmap, add device tree binding documentation for the watchdog driver, add docs for the RCU DT bindings, etc…
    • Loongson 2F – Allow NULL clock for clk_get_rate
    • Malta – Use new GIC accessor functions
    • NI 169445 – Add support for NI 169445 board; only include in 32r2el kernels
    • Octeon – Add support for watchdog of 78XX SOCs, add support for watchdog of CN68XX SOCs, expose support for mips32r1, mips32r2 and mips64r1, enable more drivers in config file, etc…
    • Omega2+ – New board, add support and defconfig
    • Pistachio – Enable Root FS on NFS in defconfig
    • Mediatek/Ralink – Add Mediatek MT7628A SoC, allow NULL clock for clk_get_rate, explicitly request exclusive reset control in the pci-mt7620 PCI driver.
    • SEAD3 – Only include in 32 bit kernels by default
    • VoCore board – Add VoCore as a vendor t0 dt-bindings, add defconfig file

For the complete details, you could check out the full Linux 4.14 changelog – with comments only – generated using git log v4.13..v4.14 --stat, or – kinder to your eyes – read kernelnewsbies’s Linux 4.14 changelog.

Lab in a Box Concept Embeds x86 Server and 6 ARM Boards into a PC Case for Automated Software Testing

November 3rd, 2017 7 comments

The Linux kernel now has about 20 millions line of code, Arm has hundreds of licensees making thousands of processors and micro-controllers, which end up in maybe hundreds of thousands of different designs, many of which are not using Linux, but for those that do, Linux must be tested to make sure it works. The same stands true for any large software used on multiple hardware platforms.

Manual testing is one way to do it, but it’s time consuming and expensive, so there are software and hardware continuous integration solutions to automate testing such as Linaro LAVA (Linaro Automated Validation Architecture), KernelCI automated Linux kernel testing, and Automotive Grade Linux CIAT that automatically test incoming patch series.

Both CIAT and KernelCI focus on Linux, and rely on LAVA, with KernelCI leveraging hardware contributed by the community, and proven to be effective as since it’s been implemented, failed build configs dropped from 51 with Linux 3.14 to zero today. However, settings the hardware and LAVA can be complicated and messy with all different boards lying around, so BayLibre engineers worked on an affordable “Lab in Box” concept to simplify administration and duplication of such systems in the hope of getting more people involved.

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They ended up with a nicely package system that fits into a desktop PC tower and includes:

  • ASRock Q1900B-ITX motherboard based on Intel Celeron J1900 with 8GB RAM and 120GB SSD running LAVA master and dispatcher
  • Devices Under Tests (DUT) will vary depending on your needs, but the demo system includes:
    • Renesas R-Car M3 Starter Kit
    • DragonBoard 410C
    • AML-S905-CC (LePotato) board
    • BeagleBone Black
    • Raspberry Pi 3
    • NXP SABRE Light
  • Connectivity / wiring
    • Network switch
    • USB hub
    • For each DUT board: power cable, serial debug cable, Ethernet cable
  • ACME Cape + Probes + Beaglebone Black to measure power consumption and control the DUTs
  • Power Supply – 530 Watt ATX power supply with +12V and +5V

Click to Enlarge

The system has been proven to work with complete continuous integration system fitted into a single PC case, and costing about 400 Euros excluding the DUTs. Software installation has also been simplified with partially automated software installations (WiP). However there may still need to work, as it’s been found to take a long time to build partially because it’s requires custom wiring for each DUT, boards need to support either 5 or 12V input, and DUT power consumption must be limited to 4A per pair of wires. This system also only supports board that fit into such case, and it’s not really scalable because using a larger case with more board may lead to excessive internal wiring. The Lab in a Box concept could be improved with a more powerful power supply, support for larger boards, and better documentation will also be provided. Baylibre may also work on a professional-grade “Lab in a Box” that fits into a rack.

Watch “Introducing the Lab in a Box Concept” by Patrick Titiano & Kevin Hilman, BayLibre for further details.

If you are short in time, you can also read the presentation slides.

As a side note, all Embedded Linux Conference Europe 2017 videos have been uploaded to YouTube.

$50 Waveshare Compute Module IO Board Plus is Designed for Raspberry Pi CM3/CM3L Compute Modules

October 31st, 2017 6 comments

Raspberry Pi Compute Module CM3L and CM3 are fairy inexpensive at $25 and $30 respectively, but if you want to get the complete development kit with Compute Module IO Board, CM3 and CM3L modules, and accessories you’ll need to spend around $150 plus shipping.

A cheaper option might be Waveshare “Compute Module IO Board Plus for Raspberry Pi CM3, CM3L” with many of the same features as the original Compute Module IO board, plus some extras like terminal blocks for ADC/DAC or RTC battery, which I first found on DX for $49.95 including shipping.

Waveshare Baseboard and RPi CM3(L) Module – Click to Enlarge

Waveshare Compute Module IO Board Plus specifications:

  • Compute Module socket for Raspberry Pi CM3/CM3L
  • I/O headers
    • 40-pin Raspberry Pi GPIO header (3)
    • GPIO header for all pins exposed by the modules (2)
    • Arduino headers for shields (10)
    • 10-bit ADC/16-bit DAC screw terminals (11)
    • 3x 5-pin sensor interface (13)
    • 1-WIRE interface, for connecting single-bus devices like DS18B20 (12)
  • Video Output / Display I/F – HDMI port, 2x MIPI DSI interfaces for connecting RPi LCD
  • Camera – 2x MIPI CSI interfaces for connecting RPi camera
  • USB – 5x USB 2.0 ports, 1x micro USB slave interface to flash firmware, 1x micro USB port for debugging (UART console via CP2012)
  • Misc – 4x user keys, 3x user LEDs, power and micro SD LEDs, 1x buzzer, on-board DS3231 RTC + battery slot, IR receiver
  • Jumpers
    • BOOT selection (30) – EN: enable the PC to access SD card/eMMC through USB SLAVE, DIS: the Compute Module will boot from SD card/eMMC
    • VGx power selection (31) – selects the I/O level
    • USB HUB enable jumper (32) – HUB enable and USB SLAVE power selection
    • ADC/DAC configuration (33) – power supply and reference voltage of ADC/DAC
    • Peripheral configuration (34) – control pins of UART, user keys, user LEDs, 1-WIRE interface, IR receiver, and buzzer
    • Arduino AD selection – Connect 1 and 2: Arduino A0-A5 as digital control pin; connect 2 and 3: Arduino A0-A5 as AD input
  • Power Supply – 5V/2.5A via micro USB port
  • Dimensions – 164.90 x 124.31 mm

There’s no specific software for the board, just use Raspbian or other operating system for Raspberry Pi CM3/CM3L. The board is also available on Waveshare website for $46.99 plus shipping, where you may also find additional details, and few sellers on Aliexpress are offering it for around $50 shipped. You’ll still need to add $25 to $30 for the Compute module, but provided you already own the power adapter, USB cables, and micro SD card, it should end up being quite cheaper than the original development kit.

SixFab Launches Raspberry Pi 3G-4G/LTE Base Shield V2 for $31.20

October 20th, 2017 16 comments

Development boards with 4G LTE are still quite expensive, at least compared to 2G or 3G solutions, with for example Wio LTE GPS Tracker board selling for around $100. So when I saw Sixfab introducing a 3G/4G shield for Raspberry Pi 3 for just $31.20 (pre-orders), I first thought it was an incredible deal.

But I soon realized I missed the “base” word in the name, as the shield just includes the SIM card slot, and mPCIe connector where you can connect Quectel’s UC20-G Mini PCle 3G module or EC25 Mini PCle 4G/LTE Module which adds respectively $59 or $89 to the price. That’s still an interesting HAT board, so let’s have a look.

Raspberry Pi 3 + 3G-4G/LTE Base Shield + Quectel EC25-E 4G Module

Raspberry Pi 3G-4G/LTE Base Shield V2 specifications:

  • Clip-in Mini PCIe socket for:
    • 4G/LTE Module (Quectel EC25) up to 150Mbps downlink and 50Mbps uplink data rates, GPS/GLONASS
    • 3G Module (Quectel UC20) up to 14.4Mbps downlink and 5.76Mbps uplink, GPS/GLONASS
  • Micro SIM card socket
  • USB – 1x micro USB port
  • Compatible with 40-pin Raspberry Pi header
  • Power Supply – 5V via micro USB port or external 5V source
  • Dimensions – 65 x 55 mm

The new version improves on the first model for the shield by reducing the area by 25%, removing the need for screws for the cellular module, using a micro SIM card socket on the top of the board, a more efficient power circuit, and removing the DC barrel jack.

While the board is mostly designed to be used with Raspberry Pi 3 board, it can also be used standalone with your computer, laptop, or another development board over the micro USB port. A blog post explains how to make a PPP Internet connection with the shield connected to RPi 3, and you can get supports in their forums.

Thanks to Nanik for the tip.

Telegea Smart Hub DIN Rail IoT Gateway is Powered by Raspberry Pi CM3 Module

October 17th, 2017 8 comments

DEK Italia has recently introduced Telegea Smart Hub, an IoT gateway based on Raspberry Pi Computer Module 3 (CM3) with Ethernet, WiFi, RS232/485 ports, and various other I/O ports, that can leverage Raspberry Pi software ecosystem.

The company explains the device is mainly targeted at DIY home automation applications as a smart home controller which runs open source smart home software like OpenHAB and Home Assistant, but it can also be used for many other IoT applications.

Click to Enlarge

Telegea Smart Hub R3B0 specifications:

  • SoC – Broadcom BCM2837 quad core Cortex A53 processor with VideoCore IV GPU
  • System Memory – 1GB LPDDR2 RAM
  • Storage – 4GB eMMC flash, 256 byte EEPROM
  • Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet port, optional Wifi 802.11 b/g/n at 2.4 GHz
  • Serial – RS485 serial port, RS232 serial debug port
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports
  • Expansion
    • 6xdigital inputs via screw terminals (for dry contacts or S0 interface)
    • 4x analog inputs (0-5V) via screw terminals
    • Dallas 1-wire bus via screw terminals
    • 1x RJ14 connector for I2C bus peripherals
    • 1x XBee module compatible connector for ZigBee and other RF modules
    • 3x expansion headers with additional GPIO, SPI and I2C bus connections
  • Sensor –  SHT21 temperature and humidity sensor
  • Debugging / Programing – 1x micro USB OTG port
  • Misc – RTC with integrated battery, user button, user LED
  • Power supply – 5VDC via micro USB connector;  24V DC / 24V AC via screw terminals
  • Dimensions – 155 x 86 mm

The gateway supports a customized version of Raspbian Jessie Lite with Linux kernel 4.9.x and later. The changes to Raspbian include enablement of clock generation for integrated Ethernet bridge on GPIO pin, UART ports for RS485 connector and serial debug port, drivers for RTC/ADC/EEPROM/ I2C relay card,  configuration of the 1-wire bus on screw terminals, and installation of GPIO handling command line tools and Zulu Embedded OpenJDK VM. You’ll find source code, hardware and software documentation on Github, and get support on Telegea Google Groups.

Click to Enlarge

The boards has been designed to fit into a commercial Camdenboss CNMB/9 DIN rail enclosure as shown above, in which case the model is called TSH-CM R3B0.

Telegea Smart Hub R3B0 board is sold on eBay without the Raspberry Pi module for 179.00 Euros, while the TSH-CM R3B0 modle with DIN rail enclosure and RPi CM3 module goes for 219.00 Euros. The complete kit is also sold on Tindie for $249.99. Visit the product page for more information.

Gumstix Expands Raspberry Pi Support with Stepper Motor, Breakout Board, LoRa PoE, and Yocto Linux

October 14th, 2017 2 comments

Gumstix has recently released of three new expansion boards compatible with Raspberry Pi boards and Compute Modules:

  • Gumstix Pi Stepper HAT for 4-wire stepper motors
  • Gumstix Pi Newgate breakout boards exposing all I/Os of Raspberry Pi Compute Module and Compute Module 3
  • Gumstix Pi Conduit PoE adding PoE support to their LoRa gateway kit based on RisingHF RHF0M301 LoRa concentrator module.

The company also offers a custom Yocto 2.2 (Morty) Linux images with support for their Pi HATs and Compute Module carrier boards.

Gumstix Pi Stepper HAT

The expansion board is designed with the 40-pin header for Raspberry Pi products, and includes Texas Instruments DRV8846, a 4 – 18V, 1.4A stepper motor driver with 1/32 microstepping providing rotational accuracy below a tenth of a degree, and 6,400 distinct positions. The board supports 6 to 36V batteries via a 3-pin headers, includes 256 kbit serial EEPROM, and can be used for printers, scanners, video security cameras, projectors, and other automated equipment.

You’ll find technical documentation and software on the product page, where you can also purchase the board for $35.

Gumstix Pi Newgate

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The Gumstix Pi Newgate is a breakout board for RPi Compute Module and Compute Module 3 that exposes all I/Os of their 200-pin SO-DIMM connector via 2.54mm pitch headers with 3 terminals for each pin. The board is also equipped with a micro USB console port, and level shifters to accommodate 3.3 and 1.8 volt logic levels for peripheral devices.

The breakout board goes for $85 on Gumstix website.

Gumstix Pi Conduit PoE

Pi Conduit PoE is an update of their earlier board with added Gigabit Ethernet and PoE support, and removal of cellular support:

  • 200-pin SO-DIMM connector for Raspberry Pi Compute Module / Raspberry Pi 3 Compute Module (CM3 / CM3L)
  • Headers for RisingRF RHF0M301 LoRa gateway/concentrator module
  • NimbeLink Skywire 2G/3G/4G cellular modem connector
  • Gigabit Ethernet jack with PoE support implemented via ASIX AX88179 SuperSpeed USB 3.0 to Gigabit Ethernet Controller
  • USB – 1x micro USB port for debugging via an FTDI USB to TTL chip
  • Misc – User (GPIO5) and reset buttons
  • Power Supply – 5V via power barrel

If you’re using any of the Raspberry Pi modules, you’ll however be limited to the USB 2.0 interface (480 Mbps) for Gigabit Ethernet, but that’s still an improvement of the 10/100M Ethernet often used with the modules.

The board sells for $150, excluding RisinRF and RPi CM(3) modules.

Yocto Linux and Hardware Customization

Gumstix does not rely on Raspbian anymore, as the company provides custom Yocto Linux disk images (Morty) with support for Gumstix Pi HATs, Compute Module carrier boards, relevant drivers, and systemd services. The company also offers a “Smart repository” with a variety of packages for easier installation. For all the three products listed above you’ll find two Yocto images, one with XFCE environment, one headless with access to the command line.

All three boards have also been designed with Geppeto, the company’s web platform for hardware design, and can be customized to your needs and ordered right in your web browser.

STEGO BOARD Enables Neat Prototypes with Development Boards and Accessories (Crowdfunding)

October 13th, 2017 1 comment

If you’ve ever created a quick prototype for your own use, or for your company, you may have based it on a development board, and added some extra modules or add-on modules, as well as potentially accessories such as hard drives or power supply. Software is complete and it works, but it may look like a mess, and transporting it may cause cables to disconnect or other problems.

STEGO BOARD should help in this case. It’s some kind of mounting systems compatible with the most common boards like Raspberry Pi 3, Rock64, or ASUS Tinkerboard, mini-ITX motherboards, mini PCs with VESA mounts, 2.5″ and 3.5″ drives, and so on. So you can create prototypes like the ones below.

Six different products are available:

  • STEGO BOARD 102 – 2 layers of the smaller board with 106 parts (stands, screws, zip ties). Can be used with mini PC, development board, up to 2 SATA drives
  • STEGO BOARD 103 – 3 layers of the smaller board with 144 parts. Up to 3 SATA drives
  • STEGO BOARD 104 – 4 layers of the smaller board with 206 parts. Up to 4 SATA drives
  • STEGO BOARD 105 – 5 layers of the smaller board with 246 parts. Up to 5 SATA drives
  • STEGO BOARD 400 – Larger board with 220 parts can be be used for up to 4 SATA drives, mini ITX motherboard, graphics card, etc…
  • STEGO BOARD 400+ – BOARD 400 and 102 together

They also have 3D printers accessories to create prisms and cubes with the STEGO BOARDs, as well as hard drive caddies, power supply brackets, and cable guard. The developers also released a Windows based simulator to create a virtual prototype.

The STEGO BOARD has been launched on Kickstarter and almost reached its $8,850 CAD target. A $39 CAD pledge (~$31 US) should get you a STEGO BOARD 102 kit, while at the other end of the scale, STEGO BOARD 400+ requires a $105 CAD pledge (~$84 US). Shipping adds $17 CAD to $56 CAD, and sadly the company has decided to limit shipping to USA, Canada, and the United Kingdom only. Delivery is planned for December 2017. The 3D printed accessories are available on a separate website.