Today was spent doing some tech tidy-up and exploring a few other bits of Tech Stuff. The very short form: On the Odroid XU4, after an update to the latest (Armbian uplifted to Devuan) the USB 3.0 is working! A direct install of Devuan 2.0 hung up on no working network without some added work…
I started the day with the designed for XU4 direct install of Devuan 2.0 “Ascii”. It boots. It works. Oh Joy! In prior times they had an XU 3/4 build that was supposed to work on both, but didn’t work on the 4. Now it works. the downside? It shows up without Ethernet working. What’s wrong? I don’t know. It could just be that it needs some configuring, or it could be more. I edited /etc/network/interfaces and did what ought to be a usable config, but no joy. Perhaps just some other config stuff, or perhaps something bigger. I’ll be setting up a WiFi dongle in the next few days and trying again to get one or the other going.
Instead of flogging that horse some more, I booted my working Armbian / Devuan uplift uSD chip. Did an “apt-get update; apt-get upgrade”. There were some messages that looked to me like kernel and kernel modules not being upgraded (no surprise as it likely needs an “apt-get dist-upgrade” or a manual kernel swap for that). In any case, it worked and rebooted nicely.
After the reboot I decided to try the USB 3.0 interfaces again. Why? Too many hours spent copying disks in the last few weeks. Plugged in a 1 TB disk with an xfs file system on it and proceeded to dump some wads of stuff onto it. It Worked!. Watching syslog showed no error messages showing up. (tail -f /var/log/syslog).
So at the moment I’m busy moving one disk worth of “stuff” onto that disk and then I’d do a cmp compare on it to make sure things didn’t change in the moving ;-) After that, I’ll be ready to try moving some system directories (/tmp and /usr ) and then some speed tests.
I’ll also be doing similar testing on other file system types, just to be sure ;-) The xfs file system was designed by Silicon Graphics for very large and high performance file systems on supercomputer class machines (of that era…) and it might be that matters… Besides, once something “had issues”, it’s good to be cautious when it finally gets working.
It also seems like the screen “jitter” on dragging a screen is reduced (still there a bit on very busy screens with lots of windows open, but “livable” now).
So, with all of that, I’m going to spend the rest of tonight and likely some of tomorrow settling in on the XU4 as my “Daily Driver” with a USB 3.0 disk for home directory and more. Hopefully it’s just some config omission on the Devuan 2.0 purpose built build and I can get off of the Armbian / Devuan conversion hybrid approach.
So, in conclusion, finally it looks like my Odroid XU4 has reached the point where it’s usable as a much faster version of the R. Pi and without too many quirks. I do really like the speed it’s got. IF the next couple of days continue as a success, well, I’ll be quite happy to buy a second one! ;-)