Dead PinePhone 64 - does not power on at all
#1
I have used my PinePhone Pine64 Manjaro Community Edition for four days. I was having an awesome time with it, trying out different distros and UIs. Everything worked beautifully at first and I'm well impressed with the current status of usability of the phone.

Now, the phone is dead - absolutely dead: no LED action, no screen (not even backlight), nothing happens anymore.

How it started:
The problem started when I had the phone running Mobian+Phosh.

I had it docked on USB keyboard/mouse, HDMI and power (although the battery did not really seem to charge, it was losing charge %).
I had updated some packages and installed some new ones.
In the terminal I gave the command: sudo reboot.
At this point the charge on the battery was probably down to a single digit (5% maybe?)
I left it in the dock.

The phone started to reboot and even power on again. On the external monitor, a very hazy version of the Mobian logo appeared (so it started to boot).

Then all went black and the phone has been dead since.

Current situation
Nothing works.
I tried the reset pin, multiple times for over 15 seconds. Removed and replaced the battery a couple of times. Held the power button multiple times for over 10/15secs.

There is no indication that anything at all is still going on in the phone.

I left the phone charging overnight (the whole night), and still no luck this morning.

The only thing that is still happening is that the phone draws power (when I connect it, I can hear coil whine starting on my cheap charging station, and when I connect it to my power bank it shows dots indicating something is sucking power from it - both charging methods were used without any issues during the first four days).


I am at a complete loss as to what's going on and I don't know what to do next... it would be a real shame if this was it and the device is now dead.

I hope anyone can help. If you have any suggestions as to what I could try or do next, please let me know!

Cheers.
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#2
Sounds like your USB port is broken.
Seems to be a pretty common issue.
Other than the Pinephone, I have 3 phones with a USB-C port (Nexus 5X, Pixel 3, and Aquos Sense Lite), of which only the Aquos Sense Lite's USB port is still working.

So probably best to opt in for a repair (or attempt to send it to a local phone fixer, and have them repair it).
母語は日本語ですが、英語も喋れます(ry
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#3
I suspect the battery is not getting charged, or is not holding a charge.

Are you plugging the charger direct into the phone (far preferable at this stage to via the dock)?

Do you have a multimeter to check the battery voltage before/after any period of charging?

Can you use another charger/cable?

It could also be that your bootable OS is no longer bootable. You say you started with Manjaro edition but have been booting Mobian - where is Mobian, on the eMMC or the SDcard? If SDcard, have you tried removing that and booting from the eMMC?

How about creating a Jumpdrive SDcard and plugging in the charger after inserting that card and the battery?
  • ROCKPro64 v2.1 2GB, 16Gb eMMC for rootfs, SX8200Pro 512GB NVMe for /home, HDMI video & sound, Bluetooth keyboard & mouse. Arch (5.18 kernel, Openbox desktop) for general purpose daily PC.
  • PinePhone Pro Explorer Edition daily driver, Tow-boot on SPI, Arch/phosh on eMMC
  • PinePhone BraveHeart now v1.2b 3/32Gb, Tow-boot with Arch/Phosh on eMMC
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#4
My guess would be a very drained battery due to dock use - see this thread.
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#5
Thank you very much, all of you, for your quick responses! Much appreciated.

From this, I gather that it could be one of these three things:
1) battery overly-discharged (most likely)
2) non-bootable OS (it's on the eMMC, by the way)
3) broken USB port (but... it does draw charge from a battery and normal charger...)

@dukla2000 - thanks so much for your detailed reply with questions and suggestions. I'm going to give this some time over the weekend and will get back to you.
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#6
(01-21-2021, 03:33 AM)ryo Wrote: Other than the Pinephone, I have 3 phones with a USB-C port (Nexus 5X, Pixel 3, and Aquos Sense Lite), of which only the Aquos Sense Lite's USB port is still working.
the first thing I ordered for the Pinephone was a USB-C replacement which arrived before the phone did because Ive had no luck with C ports.

one phone I got repaired and the C port broke again a month later
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#7
It's most likely the OS on the eMMC that has become unbootable.
It has happened a second time.

The first time, the battery had indeed been totally discharged. Probably by using the dock (hdmi+usb+ethernet).
It seemed completely dead, not even the screen's backlight would come on.

The only way I could get it to work again was by flashing a (random, I went for Postmarket but anything would have worked) distro to an SD card and boot the phone from the SD card.
I was ever so relieved to see it turn back on!

I flashed Mobian to the eMMC again and got started again, from scratch. It ran fine for a day.

Then it happened a second time - really for no apparent reason. I turned the phone off (through the interface). I wanted to prevent it from becoming completely discharged again. It had some 25% charge on the indicator.

A few hours later, back home, it just would not turn on again. Completely dead. Does not respond to charging, power button (long or short presses), anything. Only an SD card with an OS on it can bring it back to life.

The one similarity between both cases is that I "properly" turned the phone off. Once from the cli (sudo reboot) - then it died. Once through Posh's UI (power button - power off).


The big question now is.... what would cause the OS on the eMMC to become suddenly unbootable? Should one never turn their PinePhone off? I had installed several things onto it (Wireguard, ssh-server, I signed in to my FireFox account) but everything worked absolutely beautifully. Turning it off to then just not turn on anymore... it's very strange.


I fully realise that this is most likely a Mobian issue - so I will post this to their forum too. I will just leave this here in case it would help anyone else.

Marking this as SOLVED because the phone does turn on again.
In the worst case there's something wrong with the eMMC.
"Best case" scenario - it's a bug in Mobian.



Long story short:

PinePhone was completely dead. It would not turn on at all - no matter what I tried.

It may have been the battery fully discharging. It most likely, however, is that the OS on the eMMC became unbootable. (No idea why.) It was running Mobian both times it happened.
Flashing another OS to it revived it.
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#8
It might be worth using the serial terminal via the headphone connector to see what's gone wrong if it happens again. That should give you some idea if it's the bootloader that's getting corrupted, or something later in the boot process.
  Reply
#9
(01-21-2021, 12:36 AM)thatent Wrote: I have used my PinePhone Pine64 Manjaro Community Edition for four days. I was having an awesome time with it, trying out different distros and UIs. Everything worked beautifully at first and I'm well impressed with the current status of usability of the phone.

Now, the phone is dead - absolutely dead: no LED action, no screen (not even backlight), nothing happens anymore.

How it started:
The problem started when I had the phone running Mobian+Phosh.

I had it docked on USB keyboard/mouse, HDMI and power (although the battery did not really seem to charge, it was losing charge %).
I had updated some packages and installed some new ones.
In the terminal I gave the command: sudo reboot.
At this point the charge on the battery was probably down to a single digit (5% maybe?)
I left it in the dock.

The phone started to reboot and even power on again. On the external monitor, a very hazy version of the Mobian logo appeared (so it started to boot).

Then all went black and the phone has been dead since.

Current situation
Nothing works.
I tried the reset pin, multiple times for over 15 seconds. Removed and replaced the battery a couple of times. Held the power button multiple times for over 10/15secs.

There is no indication that anything at all is still going on in the phone.

I left the phone charging overnight (the whole night), and still no luck this morning.

The only thing that is still happening is that the phone draws power (when I connect it, I can hear coil whine starting on my cheap charging station, and when I connect it to my power bank it shows dots indicating something is sucking power from it - both charging methods were used without any issues during the first four days).


I am at a complete loss as to what's going on and I don't know what to do next... it would be a real shame if this was it and the device is now dead.

I hope anyone can help. If you have any suggestions as to what I could try or do next, please let me know!

Cheers.

First off thank you for helping me. I had a similar issue as you with my Pinephone CE. I had been running Mobian Phosh on the EMMC and after doing a round of updates it wouldn't turn on after. I tried plugging it into different ports and wall outlets; discharging the battery; different cable; different battery but I just tried an SD card with Jumpdrive like you suggested and it is booting from that so I am going to first try reinstalling Mobian but if that continues to give me issues I will try another distro. I think there was some update causing the issue in Mobian but I can't be certain what. I didn't use the dock at all recently so I don't think that had anything to do with my problem.
PinePhone BraveHeart Edition

Pinephone Convergence

PineTab

RockPro64
  Reply
#10
(01-21-2021, 12:36 AM)thatent Wrote: I have used my PinePhone Pine64 Manjaro Community Edition for four days. I was having an awesome time with it, trying out different distros and UIs. Everything worked beautifully at first and I'm well impressed with the current status of usability of the phone.

Now, the phone is dead - absolutely dead: no LED action, no screen (not even backlight), nothing happens anymore.

How it started:
The problem started when I had the phone running Mobian+Phosh.

I had it docked on USB keyboard/mouse, HDMI and power (although the battery did not really seem to charge, it was losing charge %).
I had updated some packages and installed some new ones.
In the terminal I gave the command: sudo reboot.
At this point the charge on the battery was probably down to a single digit (5% maybe?)
I left it in the dock.

The phone started to reboot and even power on again. On the external monitor, a very hazy version of the Mobian logo appeared (so it started to boot).

Then all went black and the phone has been dead since.

Current situation
Nothing works.
I tried the reset pin, multiple times for over 15 seconds. Removed and replaced the battery a couple of times. Held the power button multiple times for over 10/15secs.

There is no indication that anything at all is still going on in the phone.

I left the phone charging overnight (the whole night), and still no luck this morning.

The only thing that is still happening is that the phone draws power (when I connect it, I can hear coil whine starting on my cheap charging station, and when I connect it to my power bank it shows dots indicating something is sucking power from it - both charging methods were used without any issues during the first four days).


I am at a complete loss as to what's going on and I don't know what to do next... it would be a real shame if this was it and the device is now dead.

I hope anyone can help. If you have any suggestions as to what I could try or do next, please let me know!

Cheers.
My phone does not power on when the battery is on it, but if I remove the battery and plug the device on my computer the jumpdrive screen comes up, but the computer/or Etcher do not recognize the pinephone, so I cannot flash or do nothing with it.
The phone do not power on with the battery, even after the whole night charging, but it powers on when the battery is removed and the phone is plugged to the computer or outlet with the jumpdrive image, and it does nothing else. 

My suggestion is to remove the battery and plug the device and see if works and if you can do anything with it. I am still trying to figure out why the computer do not recognize the phone for me to flash it. But, I figured the battery is defective and not the USB port.

(01-22-2021, 12:14 AM)hiimtye Wrote:
(01-21-2021, 03:33 AM)ryo Wrote: Other than the Pinephone, I have 3 phones with a USB-C port (Nexus 5X, Pixel 3, and Aquos Sense Lite), of which only the Aquos Sense Lite's USB port is still working.
the first thing I ordered for the Pinephone was a USB-C replacement which arrived before the phone did because Ive had no luck with C ports.

one phone I got repaired and the C port broke again a month later
Do you think a broken USB-C port would keep the computer from recognizing the phone when it is plugged in?
  Reply


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