Just like the real Spirit Rover.

The more technical aspects of Spirit, and carry-over discussion from Kickstarter updates.
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TomTheWhittler
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Just like the real Spirit Rover.

Postby TomTheWhittler » Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:47 am

Just like the real Spirit Rover on Mars mine has died. It started by apparently running some bad pixel code. The Rover started to act funny. Upon reboot my RPI-3 would boot to four raspberries. No problem I will burn it some new brains as I had a second 64gb SD card. Fifteen minutes later new brains were installed. Plug in monitor, keyboard, mouse and video. Plug in power. Nothing. Power light comes on is all that happens. No activity on activity led.
Okay. Remove SD brain and plug it into the Windows PC. Computer says "what brain". No SD card found. Humm.
Wait I just burned an image 15 minutes ago and you even verified that the burn was good. Now you can not find the card.
What the heck....
Plug in original 16gb SD card that came with RPI-3. Computer says there is a 512kb card here. Do you want me to format it. Humm. What the heck again....
Plug in 64 gb SD card that was in it when I ran bad pixel code. Computer beeps a lot. Install driver, uninstall driver, install driver, uninstall driver, install driver, uninstall driver. Humm. This seems like a serious problem.. Maybe my SD read/writer is having an issue. Maybe it is the RPI-3.
Lets remove RPI-3 from Rover.. That pretty much means dissecting it all. Not looking forward to that as I remember how much in pain-in-the-*** is was to put this together. Damn tiny screws..
Darn.. they goes a nut somewhere into the basement into the never never land.
Darn.. there goes another never to be found again..
Kevin.. if your ears are burning it is because I am cursing you for designed this to be so miniature and pretty much un-serviceable. On the other hand it is like the real Mars Rover. On another planet and un-serviceable.
I think there should be mandate. Only 4-40 should be the smallest screws and nuts allowed.
Finally 15 minutes later the RPI-3 is in my hands. Hours to put it together. Fifteen minutes to take it apart. The irony.
Now the RPI-3 is sitting by itself. I Plug in monitor, keyboard, mouse and video into RPI-3. Plug in 64gb that was in it when it booted to four raspberries. Plug in power. no raspberries this time. The power LED comes on the board. Nothing else.
Unplug power. Pull out 64gd SD chip. Immediately drop the SD chip as it burns my finger tips.
I am guessing at this point my RPI-3 has a serious problem and not my card reader/writer. Three dead SD memory chips.
Lucky for me I can order another RPI-3 for my Spirit Rover unlike the Spirit Rover on Mars.
The big questions is what could cause this ???
I can not see how running some possible bad code could turn a RPI-3 in a self destructing SD card monster.
Has anyone heard of this happening ?
Research is the only place in a company where you can continually have failures and still keep your job.
I knew immediately that was where I belonged.

headamage
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Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2017 5:27 pm

Re: Just like the real Spirit Rover.

Postby headamage » Wed Apr 04, 2018 11:50 am

Most likely you shorted something on the Pi. You can very easily do this if you did not place plastic washers under the raguidno or between the camera and the metal bracket.
if all else is good then it doesn't make sense. Is the arduino working fine on its own? The rover is able to run its demo code without a Pi.

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TomTheWhittler
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Re: Just like the real Spirit Rover.

Postby TomTheWhittler » Wed Apr 04, 2018 1:11 pm

headamage wrote:Most likely you shorted something on the Pi. You can very easily do this if you did not place plastic washers under the raguidno or between the camera and the metal bracket.
if all else is good then it doesn't make sense. Is the arduino working fine on its own? The rover is able to run its demo code without a Pi.


I am guessing you are correct that something is shorted on the RPI-3. All the plastic washers were in place and their seemed to be a lot of space when it was assembled. I did not see any short-able areas after assembled. I did lose a few pieces of hardware when I first assembled that got replaced from the local Ace Hardware. The RPI-3 by itself looks clean. No stray fine wires or solder bridges that I can see. I am guessing one of the IC chips took a dive.

The Arduino had been working fine on its own and it still does. Still does the Demo code without the Rpi-3. In fact the entire Rover was working fine since I got it months ago. It just started having problems when I decided to actually use it for the intended purpose of learning something by physically interfacing with the RPI-3. First the original SD getting corrupt from power cycling I think. Then the second SD card going out to lunch after trying to learn to code and running demos. The Rpi-3 was working fine while internet surfing, updating, etc.
Only started acting strange after trying to communicate to attached hardware.
Very strange.
It was sort of fun while it lasted. I'll eventually get another Rpi-3 and another SD card but life is getting it the way again so it will be awhile.
Next time I will leave it spread out on the table while I learn as trying to get the SD card in/out with the Rover assembled is a pain.
When it does come time to assemble I will likely redesign to be a lot larger and use larger hardware. Maybe 3-D print something.
These 00-?? screws and nuts are a hassle. Drop one on the floor and they disappear.
I want something I can assemble in 5 minutes, not 5 hours while chasing down little pieces.
Research is the only place in a company where you can continually have failures and still keep your job.
I knew immediately that was where I belonged.

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TomTheWhittler
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Re: Just like the real Spirit Rover.

Postby TomTheWhittler » Thu Apr 05, 2018 12:54 pm

Update.
Apparently RPI-3 killing SD cards is not new or uncommon. A lot of complaints. here is just one on the raspberrypi forum.
https://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/view ... p?t=140845

I was at the discount store and picked up a cheap 16gb SD for $7.00. Thought I would try my RPI-3 again. This cheap cards is slow even though the package label stated fast. The cheap card was around 900K transfer rate compared to the SansDisk at 10m transfer rate. Took an hour to burn an image. Plugged it into my RPI-3 and it came to life. The RPI-3 is definitely running a lot slower than running that the SansDisk but it is running. I'll let it run for a few days to see how it survives. If the PI-3 and card survive I may spring for a little faster SD card. One with a rating of 8 at least. I am wondering if a faster SD makes everything run faster so more heat generated toward SD self destruction.

For those that are interested I ran across this article about making the RPI-3 run off of a USB flash drive instead of a SD drive.
http://oskarhane.com/basic-raspberry-pi ... -raspbian/
Research is the only place in a company where you can continually have failures and still keep your job.
I knew immediately that was where I belonged.

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TomTheWhittler
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Re: Just like the real Spirit Rover.

Postby TomTheWhittler » Thu Apr 05, 2018 9:53 pm

Just in case anyone else is having a problem with the Raspberry Pi killing SD cards I ran across this post about how to Hack the Pi to keep from writing to the SD to corrupt it by actually making a physical hardware mod on the Pi board.

http://therandomlab.blogspot.com/2014/0 ... ption.html

Of course you would have to have a SD card read only OS that points to a USB memory stick that then becomes the new OS read/write device.
I only found one post about a USB memory stick failing in a Pi but I found a whole lot of complaints about the SD cards randomly failing.
Research is the only place in a company where you can continually have failures and still keep your job.
I knew immediately that was where I belonged.


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