Category Archives: CubieTruck

Using Chrony on CubieTruck


Unless you really know what are you doing.

To synchronize the clock and fix a minimal time shift I was detecting, I followed the idea of the TurtleBot2 to use chrony to fix that Chrony is a little daemon that connects to your linux clock or hwclock and detect shifts. For some reason this lead to total chaos on the amosero.
I suppose chrony hasn’t been build for multicore dynamically speeded processors like the A20, which is why the shifting has been erratic and up to 2 seconds per minute.

sudo apt-get remove chrony

Fixed all timing errors on the [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck]. Also it’s a bit disturbing how little changes can inflict complex setups.



Howto use CubieTruck and NetworkManager to do WPA2 Enterprise TLS

Last days the [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck] made me struggle with its Network behavior. It continuously refused to connect to any WLAN, didn’t allow the Usage of the NetworkManager GUI, and confused me a lot.

Some things that might help you:

Wlan isn’t enabled by default – or at least it wasn’t for me.

Load the driver

In case you don’t want to do that everytime the [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck] needs wifi consider adding a new line with ‘bcmdhd’ (no quotes) to /etc/modules

I needed to install the linux firmware:

and reboot

3. bring the wlan0 device up and scan if your wlan is available

Check if the /etc/network/interfaces file looks something like that:

No additional lines, or the NetworkManager will struggle with your devices, showing them as “not managed” or “disconnected”.

So by default lubuntu 13.04 image, no Network manager has been running by boot, so I’ve fixed that by adding following line to my /etc/crontab:

(sure there are other ways – especially because it’s a system service)

So after reboot – using the [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck]-GUI its faces you with a “Network Manager not running”.

Screenshot[amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck]

So the small Icon on the taskbar isn’t able to find the network manager.
I could not fix that other than by opening an LXTerminal and:

which leads me to a nice WLAN GUI and made it possible to use WPA2 Enterprise with TLS 🙂

Howto control CubieTruck onboard LEDs

Today I wanted to know, what this little blinking lights on my [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck] mean.

There are four, which you find out if you use:

blue:ph21:led1 green:ph07:led4 orange:ph20:led2 white:ph11:led3

(or just look at it while it is running, usually it blinks a lot)


So if you want to know what each blink means you can ask the [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck] like that:

So by default the

  • green LED is indicating if there is any read write with the SD Card
  • blue LED is heartbeating
  • orange LED is CPU0 load
  • white LED is CPU1 load

In case you want to turn off the LEDS, use this code:

See here for more information.

Howto use CubieTruck and tightVNCserver

VNC is a nice tool for remote desktop administration. But like a lot of things, it doesn’t work out of the box on the [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck].

After installing the tightvncserver with

I started and configured the server with

and tried to login to [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck]IP:5091 I got a grey screen and nothing more happend. So I suppose thats a blank X instead the Lxde I expected.

So tighvnc server has a small script thats executed after you login with vnc to a server, it is located at ~/.vnc/xstartup and contains by default something like that:

So the VNC really starts a Xsession.. simply comment the last line out (use a #) and add this:

Now it should be possible to use a vnc viewer of your joice – like remmina and connect to your [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck] using the 5901 port:

Screenshot - 13.05.2014 - 20:09:21



Howto get a CubieTruck WLAN working

Note: Please see the new version of this post

For some reason the WLAN of the [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck] didn’t work out of the box. So to save you the day I spent to get it working I wrote this little step by step tutorial:

1. load the wlan driver by typing

in case you don’t want to do that everytime the [amazon &title=CubieTruck&text=CubieTruck] needs wifi consider adding a new line with ‘bcmdhd’ (no quotes) to /etc/modules

2. install linux-firmware

and reboot

3. bring the wlan0 device up and scan if your wlan is available

4. add this wlan to your connection configuration file (replace yourSSID and yourPasswd accordingly)

5. add following lines to /etc/network/interfaces

6. add DNS Information to /etc/resolv.conf (attention, we’ll use google in that example)

7. restart networking to get changes to action

If everything went well, your wlan0 device should have an IP when checking it with