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mvader (Victron Energy) avatar image

Venus OS image on Raspberry Pi Zero (W)

Hi,

Some questions here pertain to using our packages on a RaspberryPi Zero W running Rasbian OS Lite. This question is about something else: testing if the RaspberryPi Venus OS image runs on those Pi Zeros.

Our wiki states:

  • Raspberry Pi Zero: we don't know if this is supported (its a community project: please try and let us know!)
  • Raspberry Pi Zero W & WH: same thing: we don't know.

Is there any one out here that could look into that? Could be as simple as testing; and all works; and then we know and change the wiki.

Or not; and then more work is needed; for which we’ll need some outside / community help.

Venus OSRaspberry Pi
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It does not boot. Comparing the files in the image with files from noobs it looks like its missing the definition for pi zero, which seems to have another model nr. Happy to partake in testing.

4 Answers
markus avatar image
markus answered ·

If no one here has tried this, I am going to order a Pi Zero WH today in the evening. Should be in my hands by Tuesday then...

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just ordered a PiZero W + LAN board + USB adaptor, we will see on Tuesday if a Venus Image will work out of the box...

Markus, did you get any good results with the Rpi Zero? This post keeps getting listed in the "Related Questions" so it would be good to get some closure.

Hi, no unfortunately not. I did not manage to get the Venus image running on my Pi Zero.

My Pi Zero does something else now.

Hi @VicRVUsr, see also my comments in a thread above: we (Victron) don't expect this to work. Its also documented to not work: https://github.com/victronenergy/venus/wiki/raspberrypi-install-venus-image .

Venus image (& packages) can for sure be made to work on a RaspberryPi Zero W, but at the moment we're not going to spend any time on that.

What we can do is help if someone (with the proper experience) shows up with a plan to do this him or herself.

Best! Matthijs

damonz avatar image
damonz answered ·

Just got a Pi Zero WH v1.1 today and tried beta version 2.30~35 but the Pi failed to boot. Got a brief flash from the green LED and then everything seemed to stop working. I dont have a screen attached at the moment so I was unable to see if any messages were posted to the terminal. I have since flashed the card with stretch lite to confirm that the board, wifi and sd card all work properly as it should. Everything runs fine on Stretch lite. Please let everyone know how you go @Markus. I have only a little bit of knowledge of linux so I'd be very interested in your feedback once yours arrives.


Regards,

Damon

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mvader (Victron Energy) avatar image
mvader (Victron Energy) answered ·

Hi all, I’ve been looking into this last night; and it won’t work with now available image. Thanks for confirming with a real test @damonz.

A colleague explained that the main issue is that the zero and similars don’t have a FPU; whereas the 2 and 3 do have that.

I read through some config files, and found this:

Our raspberrypi2 (and 3) images are built using our `raspberrypi2.conf` machine file.

The zero hardware uses the BCM2835 SoC. [2] Which is the same SoC as the RaspberryPi Model A+ and B+. The models we do not support.

That SoC is ARMv6, which equals ARM11 [3].

I’m not an expert; at this, but looks like a separate version of the image is needed to make it work on the zero. The agherzan repo on github is has a raspberrypi0-wifi.conf file [4]; which has


DEFAULTTUNE ?= "arm1176jzfshf"

require conf/machine/include/tune-arm1176jzf-s.inc

include conf/machine/include/rpi-base.inc


[1] https://github.com/victronenergy/meta-victronenergy/blob/master/meta-bsp/conf/machine/raspberrypi2.conf#L8

[2] https://www.raspberrypi.org/documentation/faqs/#hardware

[3] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ARM_architecture

[4] https://github.com/agherzan/meta-raspberrypi/blob/master/conf/machine/raspberrypi0-wifi.conf

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Oh. OK.

So we have another Test Pi Zero available in the next days... :o) hopefully we get it working.

Regards,

I think these ARM11-based SoCs do have floating point support, just an older implementation. ARM calls it VFP. More info at [1]. It's possible that vedirect-interface was compiled with a toolchain that assumes a newer VFP.


[1] https://embeddedartistry.com/blog/2017/10/9/r1q7pksku2q3gww9rpqef0dnskphtc

Has there been any change in the status here over the past 9 months?

no; no time was spent on this, at all as far as I'm aware.

what we're currently lacking is some outside enthusiast knowledgeable on uboot, Open Embedded, and so forth to spend time on this. All internal people are too busy with other projects..

warwick avatar image warwick mvader (Victron Energy) ♦♦ ·

Ok. Will add to the list and farm out to someone appropriate if I bump into them. I think I have someone in mind.

Any news about VenusOs on pi Zero ?! someone can do it? thx

Dave van Dongen avatar image
Dave van Dongen answered ·

I tried it about a year ago. Out of the box it doesn't work. The RPi Zero doesn't seem to finish it's boot sequence. The screen output remains black. The LED on the Pi indicates the Pi is running, but nothing more. I tried 2 different Zeros, same result.

I was going to enter the question myself if anybody has find out how to modify the image to get it running on a Zero.

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