Raspberry Pi - Installer process

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    Tyler Wight

    Hi Benjamin,

     

    the installer process is part of Rise Player and it spawns a few instances to handle different parts of Rise Player. Because the Raspberry pi does not have GPU acceleration available for Chromium (which Rise Vision uses), it has to use the CPU to do any sort of rendering. The gif may display okay in just a browser tab, but when you factor in the rest of the overhead to run our player, cache, etc. Unfortunately Raspberry Pis struggle with most videos or any sort of more advanced rendering. 

     

    You may have success in increasing your GPU ram split, but we can't say for sure. Info on that here:

     

    https://www.raspberrypi.org/documentation/configuration/config-txt/memory.md

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    Benjamin Jones

    I heard rumors of chromium to get GPU acceleration, is this true?

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    Justin Hayes

    It has had for a while now. Inexcusable that RV is still not using it IMO.

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    Alan Clayton

    We hear ya Justin and we are going to carve out some time over the next 2 months to see if any improvements have been made that would allow us to leverage GPU acceleration.  

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    Justin Hayes

    That is good to hear. I know it would be some extra work, but is it possible you could consider doing your own spin of Raspbian/Debian as a whole image rather than installing overtop? As it is now I've had to hack and slash away almost everything until I have a bare minimum viable OS in order to fit RV within the 1GB RAM. I realize this would become redundant with the new 2 and 4 gig Pi 4 models but I'd imagine there are a lot of other performance tweaks you could do besides just the memory use if you look at the entire stack instead of just your app. Food for thought.

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    Alan Clayton

    Once you pursue a custom version a new set of challenges and risk are introduced that long term would likely be detrimental to the user experience. And to your point, this becomes less of an issue with 4gb models. For these reasons, it is not something we would consider at this time. 

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    Justin Hayes

    Completely fair points, and I appreciate the thought and response on the matter, thank you. I'll most likely just be getting Pi4 4GBs as soon as they become obtainable 😂

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    Colby Maughan

    Thanks for the feedback Justin!

    We're waiting on a couple Pi 4's as well. I'm sure someday they won't be on back-order. :)

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    Justin Hayes

    If it would interest anybody I might be able to put together a bash script with the tweaks I've made to make Raspbian more suitable as a signage OS (basically just hiding UI elements and such so that you only see the background wallpaper until RV loads and disabling/removing any service or libraries that are not required for RV to run.)

    I've also been trying to find a way to get RV running in a completely bare X session, with only the minimum elements of a display environment required (pretty much just openbox for a window manager.) that would simply just relaunch RV if it happens to crash. I've done this with Chrome for a 15-seat training lab on 8+ year old Dell AIOs.

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    Dave Myers

    I have 2x 4GB Pi4s and am hoping to test with RiseVision.  The new CPU is ARMv8 architecture.  Since the RV installer specifically says "armv7" in the name, I'm wondering if I need to wait for an updated build?  

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    Justin Hayes

    @Dave Myers I believe Raspbian 10 Buster still uses a 32-bit ARMv7 kernel, so you should be good. The AArch64 spin will be coming later.

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    Dave Myers

    Just found that out via trying the installation.  No snags at all during installation and testing.  Thanks.  

     

    Update:  A few minutes of streaming 1080p video via a youtube embed URL and I started getting the overheat icon in the corner.  Heatsink in place, but it looks like this thing is going to need some active cooling.  ( OR getting hardware acceleration to work in chromium ... )

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    Dave Myers

    @Justin Hayes --  a long time back, I built a custom port of Raspbian that only booted to RV - no window manager or anything.  I was attempting to get it to work on a read only file system to save uSD card, but that never worked.  This was before the official RV rasppi app and was using the chromium app store version.  

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    Justin Hayes

    That's more or less what I had in mind, I just haven't had enough time to do it. I highly recommend people look into netbooting with TFTP/NFS, it really helps a lot. My signs have been running all week so far without issue, which is a first. When the 4s are more available I'd suggest to RV that they recommend using USB3 booting since that will no longer be a bottleneck and USB flash tends to be more resilient. In regards to heat issues, I've got PoE hats on mine which have little 25mm fans, and saves a USB charger, works a treat.

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    Dave Myers

    @Justin. Success with net booting? I tried it a few years back and found it to be horribly slow. Also, do you have a link to your preferred PoE hat? I’ve seen many types at widely varying price (and presumably quality).

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    Justin Hayes

    @Dave It's alright as long as you disable swap and 300mbit throughput on the 3B+ is a must, but the performance is acceptable.

    I've had to reduce GPU mem to 64MB for RV to run stable without swap. Seems to be working fine for the last week. I also reboot daily and only run the presentations during business hours Mon-Fri.

    I assumed I had the official one. Bought it from BuyaPi.ca:
    https://www.buyapi.ca/product/raspberry-pi-poe-hat/

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    Justin Hayes

    Oh I also have the RPi hardware watchdog enabled and configured in systemd to reboot the system if it hard crashes for whatever reason. I think I can also program it to restart RV if memory usage drops below a set threshold which almost certainly means it crashed 😂

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