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[EdLUG] PINE64 - New Raspberry Pi competitor pre { white-space: pre-wrap; /* css-2.1, curent FF, Opera, Safari */ }

[EdLUG] PINE64 - New Raspberry Pi competitor

Edinburgh Linux Users Group edlug at
Sat Jan 30 14:12:23 UTC 2016

On 01/29/16 00:22, Edinburgh Linux Users Group wrote:
> I'm curious if anyone else has signed up for the PINE64 kickstarter? If so 
> what you might have planned for this new, more-powerful, Raspberry Pi
> competitor.

I've got an R-Pi running asterisk and handling all my phones, POTS and SIP
lines.  It's been going a couple of years now without bother.  Great for
blocking spam calls. It runs Debian based FreePBX install.  I actually use an
iscsi disk for its root because I don't really trust SD cards.  Makes it a bit
pointless though :-)

I bought an Odroid a while back which is a quad core similar to R-pi 2.  I run
'motion' (the cctv camera controller) on that on Arch Linux. It has a Toshiba
special flash drive which is faster than SD but basically the same. It was
quite expensive so I wouldn't recommend it.

I recently bought an OrangePi on AliBaBa for 30 quid or so.  Nice little
thing. Quad core, built in wifi and a sata interface.  It also has Pi
compatible GPIO and a camera interface. Unfortunately the ether interface on
mine is dead so it's not much use as a server.  I'm running Arch Linux on it
but it's not doing anything useful at the moment.

These things are good for little servers.  The quad core ones are quite
capable but they are overkill for IoT.  I find arduino much more fun.  I've
got a Due (ARM) running a 5" touch screen showing household info like energy
use and temperature with little dial gauges.  It's fed from other arduinos but
more interestingly some ESP8266 wifi based sensors.  These things are amazing.
You replace the standard firmware with an special arduino version and it runs
wifi full stack. They have a couple of i/o lines for one-wire or i2c but you
can get versions with more i/o and even adc.  All for a fiver! Fyi I use mqtt
(mosquito) on all these things to get consistent communication  between other
devices and linux, node etc.  It's worth checking out if you want
inter-process messaging (e.g. sensor to web app).

There's another thing that's interesting: the ST discovery range of
development boards.  You can get a board (stm32f4) with a little LCD touch
screen, joy-stick, leds etc and a gazillion (128) i/o lines. It uses 32bit ARM
chip like the arduino Due. That's ~17 quid from Farnell (CPC, Element14 etc).
 There's a linux based tool chain available and it connects directly to usb.
No fuss.

There's a lot going on out there at the moment.


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