Pine64 as a viable desktop replacement ? here are my thoughts!
#1
Hello everyone, 

I have posted a lengthy description of my experience with my new Pine64 running mate desktop over at mate forums (https://ubuntu-mate.community/t/pine-64-...-mate/4775). 

In short, I can see the potential of the board serving as a desktop computer for someone with limited needs. I found the mate desktop very responsive on the Pine64 and had no problems working overnight on it as if it was a stationary PC. Browsing the web makes for a good experience using the Midori browser (nothing else works) and imbedded videos play-back fine in 360p. 

Take a look at my post if you are considering using the Pine 64 as a backup/secondary desktop.  

Take care ! 

Luke
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#2
(04-04-2016, 05:51 AM)Luke Wrote: Take a look at my post if you are considering using the Pine 64 as a backup/secondary desktop.  

Obviously you missed https://launchpad.net/~longsleep/+archiv...our-makers since HW accelerated video decoding is already possible (even HEVC with high bitrates)...

And then please so an 'sudo apt-get install iozone3' on your device and provide the output of

Code:
cd $HOME ; iozone -e -I -a -s 100M -r 4k -r 16k -r 512k -r 1024k -r 16384k -i 0 -i 1 -i 2

This will show the performance of the SD card you use (which is somewhat responsible for the snappyness when using a desktop Linux image)
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#3
(04-04-2016, 06:22 AM)Andrew2 Wrote:
(04-04-2016, 05:51 AM)Luke Wrote: Take a look at my post if you are considering using the Pine 64 as a backup/secondary desktop.  

Obviously you missed https://launchpad.net/~longsleep/+archiv...our-makers since HW accelerated video decoding is already possible (even HEVC with high bitrates)...

And then please so an 'sudo apt-get install iozone3' on your device and provide the output of

Code:
cd $HOME ; iozone -e -I -a -s 100M -r 4k -r 16k -r 512k -r 1024k -r 16384k -i 0 -i 1 -i 2

This will show the performance of the SD card you use (which is somewhat responsible for the snappyness when using a desktop Linux image)

Thank you! Yes, I did miss that post - I will, of course, correct what I wrote. I am running a class 10 32gb Samsung card.
  Reply
#4
(04-04-2016, 06:40 AM)Luke Wrote: I am running a class 10 32gb Samsung card.

That's not the point. You get 'Samsung class 10 cards' that are 20 times faster than 'Samsung class 10 cards'. The most important performance factor is random I/O and not speed class or sequential transfer speeds. Therefore it's still interesting how your SD card performs in this regard.
  Reply
#5
(04-04-2016, 06:46 AM)Andrew2 Wrote:
(04-04-2016, 06:40 AM)Luke Wrote: I am running a class 10 32gb Samsung card.

That's not the point. You get 'Samsung class 10 cards' that are 20 times faster than 'Samsung class 10 cards'. The most important performance factor is random I/O and not speed class or sequential transfer speeds. Therefore it's still interesting how your SD card performs in this regard.

This is as far as it gets and then crashes: 

Run began: Mon Apr  4 13:38:57 2016

Include fsync in write timing
O_DIRECT feature enabled
Auto Mode
File size set to 102400 kB
Record Size 4 kB
Record Size 16 kB
Record Size 512 kB
Record Size 1024 kB
Record Size 16384 kB
Command line used: iozone -e -I -a -s 100M -r 4k -r 16k -r 512k -r 1024k -r 16384k -i 0 -i 1 -i 2
Output is in kBytes/sec
Time Resolution = 0.000001 seconds.
Processor cache size set to 1024 kBytes.
Processor cache line size set to 32 bytes.
File stride size set to 17 * record size.
                                                              random    random     bkwd    record    stride                                    
              kB  reclen    write  rewrite    read    reread    read     write     read   rewrite      read   fwrite frewrite    fread  freread
          102400       4
  Reply
#6
(04-04-2016, 06:46 AM)Andrew2 Wrote:
(04-04-2016, 06:40 AM)Luke Wrote: I am running a class 10 32gb Samsung card.

That's not the point. You get 'Samsung class 10 cards' that are 20 times faster than 'Samsung class 10 cards'. The most important performance factor is random I/O and not speed class or sequential transfer speeds. Therefore it's still interesting how your SD card performs in this regard.

One more question Andrew. Could you kindly give me some insight as to how I should install the HW drivers from the PPA? I am not fully versed in Linux ...
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#7
(04-04-2016, 07:44 AM)Luke Wrote:
(04-04-2016, 06:46 AM)Andrew2 Wrote:
(04-04-2016, 06:40 AM)Luke Wrote: I am running a class 10 32gb Samsung card.

That's not the point. You get 'Samsung class 10 cards' that are 20 times faster than 'Samsung class 10 cards'. The most important performance factor is random I/O and not speed class or sequential transfer speeds. Therefore it's still interesting how your SD card performs in this regard.

This is as far as it gets and then crashes: 

Run began: Mon Apr  4 13:38:57 2016

Include fsync in write timing
O_DIRECT feature enabled
Auto Mode
File size set to 102400 kB
Record Size 4 kB
Record Size 16 kB
Record Size 512 kB
Record Size 1024 kB
Record Size 16384 kB
Command line used: iozone -e -I -a -s 100M -r 4k -r 16k -r 512k -r 1024k -r 16384k -i 0 -i 1 -i 2
Output is in kBytes/sec
Time Resolution = 0.000001 seconds.
Processor cache size set to 1024 kBytes.
Processor cache line size set to 32 bytes.
File stride size set to 17 * record size.
                                                              random    random     bkwd    record    stride                                    
              kB  reclen    write  rewrite    read    reread    read     write     read   rewrite      read   fwrite frewrite    fread  freread
          102400       4

How does the dmesg output looks like? Any indication of filesystem corruption already? I have a few faulty/counterfeit SD cards collected and these are the only ones where iozone appears to 'crash' (since a filesystem corruptions occurs and the FS will be remounted read-only)
  Reply
#8
(04-04-2016, 10:09 AM)Andrew2 Wrote:
(04-04-2016, 07:44 AM)Luke Wrote:
(04-04-2016, 06:46 AM)Andrew2 Wrote:
(04-04-2016, 06:40 AM)Luke Wrote: I am running a class 10 32gb Samsung card.

That's not the point. You get 'Samsung class 10 cards' that are 20 times faster than 'Samsung class 10 cards'. The most important performance factor is random I/O and not speed class or sequential transfer speeds. Therefore it's still interesting how your SD card performs in this regard.

This is as far as it gets and then crashes: 

Run began: Mon Apr  4 13:38:57 2016

Include fsync in write timing
O_DIRECT feature enabled
Auto Mode
File size set to 102400 kB
Record Size 4 kB
Record Size 16 kB
Record Size 512 kB
Record Size 1024 kB
Record Size 16384 kB
Command line used: iozone -e -I -a -s 100M -r 4k -r 16k -r 512k -r 1024k -r 16384k -i 0 -i 1 -i 2
Output is in kBytes/sec
Time Resolution = 0.000001 seconds.
Processor cache size set to 1024 kBytes.
Processor cache line size set to 32 bytes.
File stride size set to 17 * record size.
                                                              random    random     bkwd    record    stride                                    
              kB  reclen    write  rewrite    read    reread    read     write     read   rewrite      read   fwrite frewrite    fread  freread
          102400       4

How does the dmesg output looks like? Any indication of filesystem corruption already? I have a few faulty/counterfeit SD cards collected and these are the only ones where iozone appears to 'crash' (since a filesystem corruptions occurs and the FS will be remounted read-only)

The image did on me completely Confused  reinstalling now on a different SD card. Will rerun and retry iozone once I get it up and running...
  Reply
#9
(04-04-2016, 10:33 AM)Luke Wrote: reinstalling now on a different SD card. Will rerun and retry iozone once I get it up and running...

I don't get it. Last sentence of issue number 2. Test the card ALWAYS FIRST and only if no errors are shown proceed further.

95% of all SBC problems are related to crappy SD cards, data corruption while burning an image and an insufficient power supply (on the Pine64 mostly related to the wrong cables between PSU and board used and not the PSU itself, the voltage drops are the problem most of the times and not less amperage). 

And sluggish behaviour of an OS image is most of the times directly related to poor random I/O performance of the card in question.
  Reply
#10
(04-04-2016, 11:12 AM)Andrew2 Wrote:
(04-04-2016, 10:33 AM)Luke Wrote: reinstalling now on a different SD card. Will rerun and retry iozone once I get it up and running...

I don't get it. Last sentence of issue number 2. Test the card ALWAYS FIRST and only if no errors are shown proceed further.

95% of all SBC problems are related to crappy SD cards, data corruption while burning an image and an insufficient power supply (on the Pine64 mostly related to the wrong cables between PSU and board used and not the PSU itself, the voltage drops are the problem most of the times and not less amperage). 

And sluggish behaviour of an OS image is most of the times directly related to poor random I/O performance of the card in question.

Hey, I just reinstalled and reran iozone3 on a different SD, and guess what happens - its the same thing all over. 

Im posting the whole output here ... 

[email protected]:/$ sudo apt-get install iozone3
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree        
Reading state information... Done
The following package was automatically installed and is no longer required:
  libnih1
Use 'sudo apt autoremove' to remove it.
The following NEW packages will be installed:
  iozone3
0 upgraded, 1 newly installed, 0 to remove and 14 not upgraded.
Need to get 400 kB of archives.
After this operation, 700 kB of additional disk space will be used.
Get:1 http://ports.ubuntu.com xenial/multiverse arm64 iozone3 arm64 429-3 [400 kB]
Fetched 400 kB in 0s (615 kB/s)
perl: warning: Setting locale failed.
perl: warning: Please check that your locale settings:
LANGUAGE = (unset),
LC_ALL = (unset),
LC_TIME = "en",
LC_MONETARY = "en",
LC_ADDRESS = "en",
LC_TELEPHONE = "en",
LC_NAME = "en",
LC_MEASUREMENT = "en",
LC_IDENTIFICATION = "en",
LC_NUMERIC = "en",
LC_PAPER = "en",
LANG = "en_GB.UTF-8"
    are supported and installed on your system.
perl: warning: Falling back to the standard locale ("C").
locale: Cannot set LC_CTYPE to default locale: No such file or directory
locale: Cannot set LC_MESSAGES to default locale: No such file or directory
locale: Cannot set LC_ALL to default locale: No such file or directory
Selecting previously unselected package iozone3.
(Reading database ... 146977 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack .../iozone3_429-3_arm64.deb ...
Unpacking iozone3 (429-3) ...
Processing triggers for man-db (2.7.5-1) ...
Setting up iozone3 (429-3) ...
[email protected]:/$ cd $HOME ; iozone -e -I -a -s 100M -r 4k -r 16k -r 512k -r 1024k -r 16384k -i 0 -i 1 -i 2
Iozone: Performance Test of File I/O
       Version $Revision: 3.429 $
Compiled for 64 bit mode.
Build: linux 

Contributors:William Norcott, Don Capps, Isom Crawford, Kirby Collins
            Al Slater, Scott Rhine, Mike Wisner, Ken Goss
            Steve Landherr, Brad Smith, Mark Kelly, Dr. Alain CYR,
            Randy Dunlap, Mark Montague, Dan Million, Gavin Brebner,
            Jean-Marc Zucconi, Jeff Blomberg, Benny Halevy, Dave Boone,
            Erik Habbinga, Kris Strecker, Walter Wong, Joshua Root,
            Fabrice Bacchella, Zhenghua Xue, Qin Li, Darren Sawyer,
            Vangel Bojaxhi, Ben England, Vikentsi Lapa.

Run began: Tue Apr  5 09:07:18 2016

Include fsync in write timing
O_DIRECT feature enabled
Auto Mode
File size set to 102400 kB
Record Size 4 kB
Record Size 16 kB
Record Size 512 kB
Record Size 1024 kB
Record Size 16384 kB
Command line used: iozone -e -I -a -s 100M -r 4k -r 16k -r 512k -r 1024k -r 16384k -i 0 -i 1 -i 2
Output is in kBytes/sec
Time Resolution = 0.000001 seconds.
Processor cache size set to 1024 kBytes.
Processor cache line size set to 32 bytes.
File stride size set to 17 * record size.
                                                              random    random     bkwd    record    stride                                    
              kB  reclen    write  rewrite    read    reread    read     write     read   rewrite      read   fwrite frewrite    fread  freread
          102400       4
  Reply


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