Beaglebone Black

From blwiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Our Beaglebone Black Products

Our BBB Products

Taking the Beaglebone Black out for a walk

Beaglebone Black is a low-cost, open source, community-supported development platform. Boot Linux in under 10-seconds and get started on Sitara™ AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 processor development in less than 5 minutes with just a single USB cable. BeagleBone Black ships with the Ångström Linux distribution in on-board FLASH. (Excerpted from the TI website)

Beaglebone-black-front.jpg

The coolest thing of all may very well be that the Beaglebone Black fits into an Altoids mint tin.

BBB-InAltoidsTin.JPG

First Impressions

After working with the BeagleBone Black (BBB) for a couple of days we have some quick impressions (May 2014).

  • Although having 2 GB of flash memory available to hold the OS sounds great, it really doesn't take long to fill it up.
  • The Angstrom distribution has a log file which chatters constantly due to a debug message which was turned on. Any instructions which say to do a 'dmesg' to get a driver running may not work since it may have fallen off the back of the dmesg log.

Bad Experience with Adafruit NIC

The Adafruit's Miniature WiFi (802.11b/g/n) Module: For Raspberry Pi and more was a read dud for a bunch of reasons. They are not so much BBB issues as issues with the NIC.

  • The Adafruit site claims "its supported by the Bone's Angstrom installation that comes with each Bone" but their tutorial page says:
This tutorial may not work on Beaglebone Black or the latest versions of Angstrom (kernel 3.8+) 
due to changes in the OS. We're working on a new/updated tutorial, but we don't have an ETA - 
we'll post it as soon as we can! Thank you for your patience.
  • This message is undated so we can't tell if it's been there a while or not.
  • We do appreciate the warning but we bought the part based on the sales page and didn't see the warning before we bought the part.
  • We would have bought a part that actually worked and was supported if we knew it didn't/wouldn't work.
  • It's our pet peeve when people thank us for our patience. We are not all that patient.
  • There are a lot of people complaining about the part on the Adafruit forums.
  • Adafruit's tutorial instructions say to update the kernel but the sales page said that the module works with the kernel.
  • After hours of messing around with it, we sorta got it working. But not really. We never saw it actually connect up.
    • It may have range problems.

Here's notes (not ours) on the NIC:

I now have reliable Wifi on my BBB (A5A) with an Edimax dongle (rtl8192cu). 
The problem is not the driver/board (in my case), but it was apparently ages old 
versions of connman and wpa_supplicant. I'm using the firmware binary downloaded 
from debian repo and then compiled the latest connman (1.16 iirc) and latest 
wpa_supplicant (2.0) from sources right on the BBB itself and did a make install.

Here's another listed solution:

I discovered that I had two wpa_supplicants running!
I commented out the pre-up line from the /etc/network/interfaces as found on octopusprotos
and now things seem to be working swell.

Another:

Why not try network manager instead of connman. I was having trouble with getting 
the wifi (Linksys WUSB100v2) to work. Removed connman and installed network manager, 
installed the drivers with opkg and it worked perfect on the first try. I have had it 
running for about a week now besides the occasional reboot to get VNC back up and wifi 
is still working good. Haven't tested speed yet but it seems to be running good for
 being G and considering that my phones data connection runs circles around my home data 
connection (best i can get in BFE unless i spend almost triple for only double the speed).

Features

(From the Beagleboard website). For an extended list of features see this site.

Processor: AM335x 1GHz ARM® Cortex-A8

  • 512MB DDR3 RAM
  • 2GB 8-bit eMMC on-board flash storage
  • 3D graphics accelerator
  • NEON floating-point accelerator
  • 2x PRU 32-bit microcontrollers

Connectivity

  • USB client for power & communications
  • USB host
  • Ethernet
  • HDMI
  • 2x 46 pin headers

Software Compatibility

  • Ångström Linux
  • Android
  • Ubuntu
  • Cloud9 IDE on Node.js w/ BoneScript library plus much more

I/O Connections

Where the Beaglebone Black really shines is I/O support.

  • 3 I2C buses
  • CAN bus
  • SPI bus
  • 4 timers
  • 5 serial ports
  • 65 GPIO pins
  • 8 PWM outputs
  • 7 analog inputs (1.8V max 12 bit A/D converters)

One-Wire on the Beaglebone

PWM on the Beaglebone

Prototyping

The Adafruit ProtoPlate is a great way to experiment with the I/O capabilities of the Beaglebone Black. We have used one of these for the Arduino and they are really handy for relatively small breadboard circuits.

Adafruit ProtoPlate.jpg

Software

External Sites