Clusterboard networking problems
#11
(03-18-2019, 01:31 PM)PigLover Wrote:
(03-17-2019, 08:48 AM)BryanS Wrote: There appears to be a thread about this issue in the Armbian forums. It talks about some changes that weren't carried through to the newest kernel, that of timing issues with the Realtek devices. I assume that's the same whispers I saw regarding timing elsewhere.

https://forum.armbian.com/topic/9402-eth...ne-module/

I'm out of my league at the moment doing kernel recompiles, but I'll try and provide any information that is needed to get this resolved.


(edit: I tried to post my findings in the Armbian forum, but I've forgotten my password and the email reset appears to be broken...)

That is the exact issue you are fighting against.  You can fix it on the newer kernels - one module at a time - by modifying one of the boot files as described in that other thread.  But it requires a serial console and is a PITA.

I appreciate all the work that Armbian does, but there really is no excuse for this issue remaining open and untouched by them for this long.

Once you get past that one the next hurdle to get over is the "won't reboot without power cycle, which required power cycling the whole cluster" issue.  This one really needs to get fixed if the Clusterboard is ever going to be really useful.  At is is mine is back on a storage shelf because its just not worth fighting it.

In fact, if anyone wants a Clusterboard and 8 so-pines at a good discount you could PM me...

The Armbian people are supporting a lot of boards. Too many perhaps, although I assume a lot of code gets reused. And I wondered about the reboot thing, I was able to get some to work ok rebooting and some did not. I didn't realize that was yet another problem. I'm just confused as to why the baseboard works fine as opposed to the clusterboard. I may try the console fixes...

I kind of wish they'd put 7 Ethernet jacks on the thing instead of using the switch, like some of the (sadly, prototype only) Pi Clusters used. That might solve some of the issue. I don't know, perhaps the Ethernet could be broken out to jacks instead of the switch.  I'm going to suggest that to Pine, at least provide headers and a way to turn the switch off. Should be easy enough to get some magjacks and get the switch chip off there.

PM me what you'd want for your cluster set and what country you're in (shipping is nasty...) I'll see if I can afford it, I'd like to have some of these to play with in my own layout.
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#12
(03-19-2019, 09:25 AM)BryanS Wrote: I kind of wish they'd put 7 Ethernet jacks on the thing instead of using the switch

Does not matter what kind of hardware you have if the driver does not work.  If there is anything I've learned from my A board it's that these toys are kind of useless without drivers :/  Luckily there seems to be a fix, we just need to figure out how to apply it or get it in to the distro.
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#13
My complaint is not about the hardware (which is great) or that the software cannot be "fixed" (it can and its not really that hard once you figure it all out - well, except for the reboot issue, which is still outstanding).

My biggest complaint is the almost total lack of attention to this product and these issues from Pine.  They created it and just don't seem to care.  They seem more interested in fancy photo ops at FOSDEM than actually delivering working product.

Also disappointing is the reaction of the leading portions of the "community".  The semi-official "community" builds for this product just don't seem to understand that is doesn't work "out of the box" on the Clusterboard - only on the on the baseboard (which is just intended as a test target, not a deployment platform). 

I do not think that people like Armbian have any duty or responsibility here, but the fixes have been delivered to them on a platter, were integrated into a prior build (the 3.14 Xenial build that still seems to work) but were unceremoniously dropped when moving the builds forward and are broken again.  That is also disappointing.
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#14
(03-19-2019, 10:53 AM)AZClusterboard Wrote:
(03-19-2019, 09:25 AM)BryanS Wrote: I kind of wish they'd put 7 Ethernet jacks on the thing instead of using the switch

Does not matter what kind of hardware you have if the driver does not work.  If there is anything I've learned from my A board it's that these toys are kind of useless without drivers :/  Luckily there seems to be a fix, we just need to figure out how to apply it or get it in to the distro.

Here's the odd thing. I assume the PHY chip for the baseboard and the clusterboard are the same. (I am going to bring my baseboard to work tomorrow where I have better solder tools to fix the power jack, will look at everything under the scope to verify.)

The Baseboard boots with the latest version of Armbian no problem. It asked for an address, and seemed to reboot ok. I took that exact module, plopped it in the clusterboard, and with the router still having the address assigned, booted it. No Ethernet. A USB dongle from the CompUSA days worked fine. It's odd...I'm going to see if I can make the file fixes to see if that helps, and will post results when I get them.
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#15
Quote:The Armbian people are supporting a lot of boards. Too many perhaps, although I assume a lot of code gets reused. And I wondered about the reboot thing, I was able to get some to work ok rebooting and some did not. I didn't realize that was yet another problem. I'm just confused as to why the baseboard works fine as opposed to the clusterboard. I may try the console fixes...

Armbian support too many boards. True. But Clusterboard is not among supported ones which is why nobody can care that it works with Armbian. The devil is as always in the details - that's why it doesn't work Smile

Probably network card timings needs to be adjusted - time, hardware and interest are needed for this to be solved.
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#16
(03-20-2019, 12:30 AM)igorp Wrote: Armbian support too many boards. True. But Clusterboard is not among supported ones which is why nobody can care that it works with Armbian. The devil is as always in the details - thaProbably network card timings needs to be adjusted - time, hardware and interest are needed for this to be solved.

It was solved in 3.10.  We just need to get the solution in to the latest release.
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#17
(03-20-2019, 12:49 AM)AZClusterboard Wrote:
(03-20-2019, 12:30 AM)igorp Wrote: Armbian support too many boards. True. But Clusterboard is not among supported ones which is why nobody can care that it works with Armbian. The devil is as always in the details - thaProbably network card timings needs to be adjusted - time, hardware and interest are needed for this to be solved.

It was solved in 3.10.  We just need to get the solution in to the latest release.

If there's something those of us out here can do (beta test, etc.) let me know.
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#18
> It was solved in 3.10. We just need to get the solution in to the latest release.

We don't provide solutions for free not even for supported hardware. For that you need to hire people.
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#19
(03-20-2019, 07:33 AM)igorp Wrote: > It was solved in 3.10.  We just need to get the solution in to the latest release.

We don't provide solutions for free not even for supported hardware. For that you need to hire people.

3.10 works.  There is already a solution.  It just needs to be put in to the latest distro.
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#20
is there a link to the solution? I went through the ones in the thread but don't see something that I recognize.
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