Best hardware platform

Is there a good reason to believe that eMMC will suffer less corruption? I wouldn’t think so, as both are basically wrappers and controllers of a piece of flash-memory.

Have you considered whether your corruption issues can be solved by getting a large high quality SD card? High quality needs no explanation, but many people are not aware that more free space on your card gives you better wear leveling, preventing parts of the card to get prematurely worn out by too frequent writes. Also make sure your card has a suitable file system, like ext3 or ext4. File systems like NTFS, FAT, ext2 and some others rewrite data a lot more often than e.g. ext3 and ext4, and will cause your storage to wear more quickly.

I was using a Raspberry pi and I hab the same problem. I switched the SD card for an external HD which helped but the raspi was too slow.
So I got myself a reconditionned thin client from ebay and I am very happy now.

I saw the RPi announcement; nice but also disappointing. It delays the possibility of the RPi4 coming out soon.

I just bought one of these. Z83-w Will rip Windows off and put some flavour of Linux on to run OH2. For £80 you can’t argue with it…

No, but to decide in favor of any particular HW is rather a compatibility/support thing.
Any Pi 2 or newer is fast enough to run openHAB well enough, and with millions out there in use, chances to NOT run into HW or OS related issues are higher, and if you still do, there’s much more likely someone out there to be able to help.

Don’t disagree at all. I have many RPi’s running many things - OH2 is one of them. They are brilliant bits of kit.
My thinking behind this is rather the non-SD card approach to it. I’ve had a few failures which just create a headache.

Anyway, I do because I can :wink:
It’s a new toy and, 1 week on, it’s still not used :expressionless:

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Don’t get fooled, eMMC is not substantially better than SD w.r.t. wear-out caused failures. Check this post.

I was actually reading that thread a few days ago and made some of the changes. Thanks :slight_smile:

Not preventing, just delaying. However, enough extra space on a high-quality SD card can extend its life beyond the expected operating life of your system. Thom D. posted a nice spreadsheet one can use to guesstimate how long your SD card should last given measured write rates (see post 63 above).

My biggest issue with SD cards is not that they wear out but that they do so silently. You don’t know there might be a problem until it is too late and things start to become corrupted. And then you have to go back through your backups manually to find which one is not corrupted.

Well, not to be a stickler, but no. Preventing. I said it will prevent premature wear out. :wink: Anyway, I take your point about silent failures on SD cards, but this isn’t unique for SD cards. MMC and other memory cards, as well as USB flash drives, all have this problem. (Maybe some devices with eMMC have built in wear indication in the surrounding hardware – I really don’t know, but I wouldn’t bet on any specific one to have that without checking first.) To avoid silent failures with local storage, you probably need to use a proper hard drive, SSD or mechanical.

As a side note, I guess having a copy of a working, running stable image would be a good idea, combined with a non-local private git repository with all configuration files, where you commit and push every time you do a change. If you need to swap cards, you can just copy the image and git checkout the config.

After enduring two SD card failures on my Raspberry Pi, I came to the conclusion that it not a suitable platform for home automation. Here’s my reasons why:

Yes, the SD card can be replaced easily and cheaply, and a quick restore of data gets you back up and running, but a device that is central to the operation of your home should be of “fit it and forget it” quality. I looked at using an SSD drive with the Pi, but it looked more like a jumble of wires than a home control device.

Also, I have found that the Pi is just not stable enough, Hardly a week went by without it needing to be rebooted for some reason. This was just a standard Pi 3 with Openhabian on it. It’s taken a while for my family to accept home automation of lights, A/V and heating. But now it’s just part of how we live and failures are not tolerated. Coming home to a cold dark house on a winters evening because the Pi has hung again generates a lot of sadness, to say the least!

So, it is essential that the hardware platform is stable and can be relied on. The Pi does not meet these requirements in my opinion. My solution is an Intel NUC5CPYH with Openhabian on Ubuntu 16.04, but I am certain that any dedicated device that uses an HD or SSD would give similar results. This has totally transformed my use of OpenHAB. I am still in the process of migrating from a Vera Z-Wave network, but now I have the confidence that the hardware I am using is up to the job for the foreseeable future. There have been zero hangs or crashes, and the performance is more than adequate.

The Raspberry Pi is an excellent, cheap device that I still use for testing, but I don’t think it’s up to the job of running a home automation system 24/7/365.

I think people have different experiences here. I ran Z-Way for two years on a Pi 2B with Raspbian on a 16 GB quality SD card and had zero SD failures. A few months ago I switched to running openHAB on the same Pi with a 32 GB quality SD card. Maybe I will be proven wrong, but I’m not expecting any SD card failures any time soon.

That said, if openHAB supported rsyslog to enable remote logging, SD cards would wear even slower.

Yes, I suspect most people have had good experiences with the Pi, but the two failures I had meant I no longer trusted it. The SD cards I used were good quality also (Kingston & Verbatim Class 10), so perhaps I was unlucky. But for me the extra expense of the NUC was well worth it for peace of mind.

Still a fan of repurposing an old laptop personally. Free built in UPS :wink:

In all seriousness I’ve shied away from sd card devices for exactly the reason of silent failures.
An old laptop I had running off a 4gb stick managed 2 years before corruption, but I tweaked it to make it so ( no swap, map /var/log to a ramdisk, cut out unneeded services/logging, etc )

Everyone’s experience is different.

Backup and restore is a must. You can’t just set it and forget it with a system like OH that you are constantly updating, changing configs, and which is saving data. There will be failures no matter the platform or hardware it is running on.

There are a ton of RPi+HDD cases.

I think this is another case where experiences differ.

These are my running RPis. The uptime is reported in Days:Hours:Minutes:Seconds. So yes, Hydra has been running without problem for over 96 days without a reboot.

Cerberos is a RPi3, Hydra is a RPi Zero W, and Manticore is an RPi 1B. Note that the actual uptime is much longer. Those numbers are how long the service I have running on those Pis that report sensor readings have been running. I find them to be very solid platforms. I don’t think any of my VMs have as long of an uptime.

I’m not saying that your experience is wrong, but I don’t think it is the norm. Maybe you were unlucky and got a bad RPi.

I think the number of people who do so provides a decent counter-argument. I’m not trying to convince anyone that RPi is the way to go. In fact, if you have a choice I would recommend using a more powerful machine. But I do think it is well suited for the job for those who chose it.

I certainly can’t argue with those numbers @rlkoshak, very impressive! My issue with the cases was that by the time you add the cost of the case to the Pi you are close to the cost of a NUC, without having the SSD attaching via a USB cable, which just looked like a bit of a bodge to my eyes. The WD Pi Drive looked the best but was expensive.
I now have one of my Pi’s running Kodi (OpenElec) and it’s rock solid in this role.
On reflection, perhaps it was the fact that I had an Aeotec Z-Wave dongle, a NooElec 433MHz receiver and the SSD drive hanging off the Pi that caused the problem by drawing too much current?
Anyway, I now have a solution that works, so I’ll stick with it.

Very likely. The RPi is very sensitive to inadequate power supplies and to USB devices that draw too much power.

I’ve been running on a Pi3 for over a year and I’ve never had to replace the SD card or reboot it aside from config changes and to move it so I could include my zwave locks. What I ended up doing is just redirecting /var/log to an NFS share on my PC to save on wearing on the SD card

Nice to know it’s possible. But it would be cool with something a bit more built in and ready to go. :slight_smile:

The number of people running OH who would want to use syslog is a very tiny percent. And since those same people will already have the skills to set up rsyslog will also have the skills to add a new log4j2 appender to the logging config I don’t see how it would be worth the extra effort to make something “built in and ready to go.”

Of course, PRs are welcome if you disagree.


Hi @NCO,
4 months ago you said that you moved to a rpi with ssd. What are your experiences with this setup up to now?

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