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  1. #11
    Senior Member
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    Dec 2015
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    Hi M H, yes i've seen those extenders. Also the way some of the cases mount the Pi and Hats away from the LCD display etc look good (but expensive)
    I thought (for my situation) a network solution would be best as it means there is one single location/folder/NAS/LUN/TFTP server to put an image in and have it work for every pCP client on the network.

    I'll be happy with whatever the pCP devs and epoch1970 comeup with though
    I'm just throwing ideas around

    edit -
    cases like this one from audiophonics is what i'm referring to above
    http://www.audiophonics.fr/en/boitie...y-p-11248.html
    http://www.audiophonics.fr/en/boitie...y-p-11249.html
    Last edited by huxmut; 2017-04-14 at 20:54.
    rPi 3 + rasPi 7" LCD + HiFiBerry DiGi+ | rPi 2 + IQaudio DAC+ |rPi 2 + HiFiBerry DAC+ | Squeeze Box Touch | LMS + XPenology on HP Gen 8 |


  2. #12
    Hi Huxmut,

    Indeed the case you linked is the one that allowed me to have a pi in the living room, and does use the sd-extender.

    On the subject of netbooting ; it would be awesome to have an empty pi to learn all configuration over the network.
    Firmware, OS, configuration and executables all over the net. A central server, preferably a PCP , with the needed services and storage could centralise all that.
    Unfortunately it would be wired ethernet only at this moment. And I use all my players and LMServer wireless at this moment. ( I know the disadvantages and risks, but it works for me )
    I have been thinking about wifi booting, but that would be quite more complex ( SSID, passwords, chipsets supported ) and impossible until the bootloader is extended for this. And frankly I do not expect the raspberry foundation to put time into that wifi-netbooting concept. A recently purchased wifi printer however showed me it is possible to recognise and configure a factory default node to work on the wifi network without memorycard, USB connection or key input on the device. So technically it is not impossible.

    Still parts of the central repository can be done with scripting and pushing config files to a central node. It would be similar to the insitu upgrades and also have the same drawbacks.
    For me it is a nice thing to debate, but in my situation I would stay with card swapping, as it almost as easy and flexible. Only a full USB boot would help ease the handling.

    Regards MH

  3. #13
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    3

    Net and USB Boot works on Rpi2

    Hi,
    with an empty SD card with only bootcode.bin on it, even a Raspberry Pi 2 can netboot picoreplayer. But Rpi2 does not look into the serialnumber folder, he searches the boot files in the pxe root. Took me a day to find that problem.

    It is also possible to boot from a USB Stick. I just write the piCorePlayer img to the stick as I would do with an SD card and it worked out of the box. Even mydata.gz gets written to sda2. But config.txt changes are written back to the bootcode.bin sd card, which then brakes the booting.

  4. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Paris, France
    Posts
    2,110
    Howdy, netbooters everywhere.

    I am testing now with 5 clients (pcp3.20beta5) and a Raspbian Lite server. I'm trying to boot all 5 at once, with mixed results. Here is what I can report for now:
    • It looks like Pi 3 clients send discovery packets as soon as they have powered up, so if they are behind a switch that takes its time booting, like learning network topology for STP, then the packets are lost and the Pis stay put for a while. Don't know how long, it is not my test case. The solution seems to be configuring the switch to "fast-open" some ports to let the traffic go through.
    • My Pis wear Justboom amp HATs, for the moment I use two 24V PSUs, one 18V, one 12V and one 5V "official" Pi 3 PSU. I *think* that if the Pis are not totally powered down when they regain power, they don't boot so well. I have 1 of the Pis on nylon stand-offs, the 4 others on brass standoffs, no difference. The one with the "official PSU" is powered via ต-USB, the others via the DC barrel connector on the amp, no difference.
    • I am testing with 2 switches on the path: one giga integrated to a router, another next to the clients. For this one I test mainly with an old no-name fast switch: boot is not consistent, and sync sometimes suffers. I've also tested with a brand new Netgear GS108T v2: sync seems flawless, boot better but not perfect.
    • The setup I used initially (described above) was to automount a bind mount between /exports and /tftp. I found out the mounts would expire or not come up at the appropriate time, so I have replaced that with symbolic link. This clearly improved the boot success rate.
    • I *suspect* that the discovery protocol of LMS might cause some players to stall during boot. I have anecdotal evidence players boot better (if not perfect?) with LMS stopped. Supposedly broadcasts can stop a Pi from TFTP-booting, if you have more info on that I'm interested.
    3 SB 3 • Libratone Loop, Zipp Mini • iPeng (iPhone + iPad) • LMS 7.9 (linux) with plugins: CD Player, WaveInput, Triode's BBC iPlayer by bpa • IRBlaster by Gwendesign (Felix) • Server Power Control by Gordon Harris • Smart Mix, Music Walk With Me, What Was That Tune? by Michael Herger • PowerSave by Jason Holtzapple • Song Info, Song Lyrics by Erland Isaksson • AirPlay Bridge by philippe_44 • WeatherTime by Martin Rehfeld • Auto Dim Display, SaverSwitcher, ContextMenu by Peter Watkins.

  5. #15
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    Dec 2005
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    Sutton Coldfield, UK
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    529
    Quote Originally Posted by epoch1970 View Post
    Howdy, netbooters everywhere.
    Hi Epoch, I hadn't realised the relevance of your signature before I composed my first post to you.

    I wasn't considering Net Booting as I was quite happy with my set-up, but yesterday, on one of my Pi's, the SD card latch broke, which prompted a few questions about Net Booting.

    1. Do all the players have to be the same Pi Version and all be players?
    2. Is the operating system/squeezelite/LMS upradeable once the OS has loaded and does the player have to go back to base OS if one of the players stops?
    3. I suppose if all the players had identical hardware and DAC's etc then the updated image could be kept on the central server?

    Sorry for the basic questions.
    Music Store: Synology DS215J NAS
    Home Server/Player:
    LMS 7.9.1 on Pi 3B piCorePlayer v3.22 Server/IQAudio DAC+/Amp+
    Portable Server/Player: LMS 7.9.1 on HP-DV2700 Laptop/Ubuntu 17.10 with synced music drive.
    Homeplug LAN Players: Pi 3B piCorePlayer v3.22/HDMI/Jivelite, Squeezelite on Windows 10 PC
    UPNP Wifi Players: Chromecast Audio, Revo Super-Connect Radio, GGMM-E5 portable
    VPN Player: SqueezePlayer on Android Phone

  6. #16
    Senior Member
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    Apr 2008
    Location
    Paris, France
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    2,110
    Quote Originally Posted by ian_heys View Post
    1. Do all the players have to be the same Pi Version and all be players?
    2. Is the operating system/squeezelite/LMS upradeable once the OS has loaded and does the player have to go back to base OS if one of the players stops?
    3. I suppose if all the players had identical hardware and DAC's etc then the updated image could be kept on the central server?
    1. Yes, netbooting is a Pi 3 specific feature, AFAIK. Something to do with the chipset model used.
    2. According to my tests, you can boot, configure pCP and reboot into the new config like if the OS was installed on the SD.
    3. The OSes don't need to be the same, they are stored in the server. The Pi 3 client boots the OS it fetches via TFTP under a path that includes its serial number, e.g. "/tftp/123456/". Then in the OS config you specify an NFS export to serve as root directory, e.g. "/export/123456/pCP".
    So you need a bit of room on the server (but in the case of pCP the OS is so small it just doesn't matter). And you can access a machine's system right away under /tftp or /export. Very easy compared to using an SD.

    As I mentioned, boot reliability is not good enough in my case. If there is no solution to this, then I don't think the setup is viable.
    3 SB 3 • Libratone Loop, Zipp Mini • iPeng (iPhone + iPad) • LMS 7.9 (linux) with plugins: CD Player, WaveInput, Triode's BBC iPlayer by bpa • IRBlaster by Gwendesign (Felix) • Server Power Control by Gordon Harris • Smart Mix, Music Walk With Me, What Was That Tune? by Michael Herger • PowerSave by Jason Holtzapple • Song Info, Song Lyrics by Erland Isaksson • AirPlay Bridge by philippe_44 • WeatherTime by Martin Rehfeld • Auto Dim Display, SaverSwitcher, ContextMenu by Peter Watkins.

  7. #17
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    Dec 2005
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    Sutton Coldfield, UK
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    Thanks for that - very clear.

    I may go on to try it out - but just a little busy with other LMS matters at the moment.

    Will post here if I do find it useful.
    Music Store: Synology DS215J NAS
    Home Server/Player:
    LMS 7.9.1 on Pi 3B piCorePlayer v3.22 Server/IQAudio DAC+/Amp+
    Portable Server/Player: LMS 7.9.1 on HP-DV2700 Laptop/Ubuntu 17.10 with synced music drive.
    Homeplug LAN Players: Pi 3B piCorePlayer v3.22/HDMI/Jivelite, Squeezelite on Windows 10 PC
    UPNP Wifi Players: Chromecast Audio, Revo Super-Connect Radio, GGMM-E5 portable
    VPN Player: SqueezePlayer on Android Phone

  8. #18
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Paris, France
    Posts
    2,110
    I am done with it.
    I fiddled with every possible aspect of the software and hardware on my test setup, and my conclusion is that it is not possible to get 5 players to boot together, repeatably, with a Pi 3 as the server.

    Perhaps there is still room for improvement in the firmware, but it's possible we'll have to wait for Pi 4 to get netbooting to work in real life...
    3 SB 3 • Libratone Loop, Zipp Mini • iPeng (iPhone + iPad) • LMS 7.9 (linux) with plugins: CD Player, WaveInput, Triode's BBC iPlayer by bpa • IRBlaster by Gwendesign (Felix) • Server Power Control by Gordon Harris • Smart Mix, Music Walk With Me, What Was That Tune? by Michael Herger • PowerSave by Jason Holtzapple • Song Info, Song Lyrics by Erland Isaksson • AirPlay Bridge by philippe_44 • WeatherTime by Martin Rehfeld • Auto Dim Display, SaverSwitcher, ContextMenu by Peter Watkins.

  9. #19
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Sutton Coldfield, UK
    Posts
    529
    Quote Originally Posted by epoch1970 View Post
    I am done with it.
    That's good enough for me. Glad I didn't start.

    It's fantastic that this forum generates so many diverse functions and facilities.

    Personally I haven't had any SlimDevices/Logitech products for at least two years but the infrastructure is so good, thanks to all the great developers, that I wouldn't think of going anywhere else.

    And when I can get a true audiophile quality server/player for about ฃ100.00 it's hard to imagine moving away from this system.

    Keep on trucking.
    Music Store: Synology DS215J NAS
    Home Server/Player:
    LMS 7.9.1 on Pi 3B piCorePlayer v3.22 Server/IQAudio DAC+/Amp+
    Portable Server/Player: LMS 7.9.1 on HP-DV2700 Laptop/Ubuntu 17.10 with synced music drive.
    Homeplug LAN Players: Pi 3B piCorePlayer v3.22/HDMI/Jivelite, Squeezelite on Windows 10 PC
    UPNP Wifi Players: Chromecast Audio, Revo Super-Connect Radio, GGMM-E5 portable
    VPN Player: SqueezePlayer on Android Phone

  10. #20
    Senior Member
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    Apr 2008
    Location
    Paris, France
    Posts
    2,110
    Yeah I'm pretty miffed by the situation.

    For those who'd like to get rid of the SD and do not mind attending reboot and power cycle the machine if it doesn't come alive, here is the last configuration I was running on the Raspbian server.
    It runs good, but not reliably enough for me. I was targeting unattended reboot after general power failure (the Pi 3 server being protected by an UPS)

    This setup was running on "Linux srv 4.9.24-v7+ #993 SMP Wed Apr 26 18:01:23 BST 2017 armv7l GNU/Linux" (Raspbian lite) on Pi 3. All wired network, DHCP server on an ISP router box, 2 switches: one close to the players, one in the router box (Pi 3 server connected to it).

    1. Install atftpd in addition to dnsmasq. For me dnsmasq has a bug in its tftp server and often sends files that belong to the wrong player. The symptom is the player doesn't boot and blinks its green led 3 times repeatedly. This is solved by using atftpd.

    2. Configure both to work together. For atftpd I have boosted the number of threads to improve processing of parallel booting of multiple players. The timeout option computed by the client is disregarded as I read there was a bug there in the Pi 3 firmware, but these tweaks might be useless. This is /etc/default/atftpd:
    Code:
    USE_INETD=false
    OPTIONS="--user=root.root --retry-timeout=30 --maxthread=200 --no-timeout --verbose=3 --listen-local /tftp"
    3. As clients would still randomly decide to sit on their butt doing nothing, I decided in a last-ditch effort to supersede the router's built-in DHCP server with dnsmasq in the Pi 3 server. So dnsmasq no longer works in proxy mode, but as an authoritative DHCP server. Having 2 active DHCP servers would disrupt networking, so dnsmasq is configured to respond only to a specific set of Pi clients. This is /etc/dnsmasq.conf:
    Code:
    log-dhcp			  # Debug mode
    log-async=50			  # Weak IO/s on Pi
    dhcp-no-override		  # Safe behaviour
    dhcp-ignore=tag:!known		  # Only known Pis (below)
    pxe-service=0,"Raspberry Pi Boot" # Boot service for Pi 3
    dhcp-option=66,"192.168.1.161"    # Inform clients of the TFTP server name, ourselves
    				  # Needed for atftpd. Mind the quotes
    dhcp-authoritative		  # Try to help Pi3s get an address to boot...
    dhcp-range=192.168.1.100,192.168.1.175    
    				  # ... and its still not enough. It's broken.
    
    # Known hosts
    dhcp-host=b8:27:eb:01:02:03:04,player1,192.168.1.162
    ...
    Once booted, I had excellent sync over my 5 test players (pcp3.20beta5). Reboot usually works, as it is easier to get a single Pi to boot compared to 5 at the same time. Rebooting the server puts players in stasis while they try to regain their root filesystem over NFS. After a few minutes, the players are operational again and sync fine.

    Finally be aware that switches on the path may affect the players boot behaviour, especially if they are power cycled as well. "Smart" switches that take their time to boot and activate their ports have an adverse effect, possibly also switches with "green" features that activate ports on demand. YMMV, and good luck.
    Last edited by epoch1970; 2017-05-01 at 02:08.
    3 SB 3 • Libratone Loop, Zipp Mini • iPeng (iPhone + iPad) • LMS 7.9 (linux) with plugins: CD Player, WaveInput, Triode's BBC iPlayer by bpa • IRBlaster by Gwendesign (Felix) • Server Power Control by Gordon Harris • Smart Mix, Music Walk With Me, What Was That Tune? by Michael Herger • PowerSave by Jason Holtzapple • Song Info, Song Lyrics by Erland Isaksson • AirPlay Bridge by philippe_44 • WeatherTime by Martin Rehfeld • Auto Dim Display, SaverSwitcher, ContextMenu by Peter Watkins.

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