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philipma1957
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August 03, 2019, 05:38:17 AM
 #21

Rasp pi are simply not made for this task.

Cheap used Lenovo tiny PCs do a better job.

Dell has a good small unit. Buy a used one. Many will hold a nvme and a ssd.

I use Mac mini’s 2012 model and or 2014 models.

I clone a backup os with a wallet . And away I go.

I see BTC as the super highway and alt coins as taxis and trucks needed to move transactions.
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August 03, 2019, 06:38:14 AM
 #22

Rasp pi are simply not made for this task.

sort of disagree (sort of)

storage is really what holds the Pi back these days. CPU did before, but not since the rPi 2. You can get around the SD card issues by using the most modern rPi's (3B+), as they allow you to boot from a SATA disk, bypassing SD cards altogether.

But really, USB storage, SATA or not, is less than ideal. You can get a Rock64 pro single board for less than $100. You can also get an NVMe or SATA PCI-E expansion card for the Rock64 pro (it has only 1 slot). And there's a 4GB version, you could run a lightweight hypervisor on that, and get a securely compartmentalized home Bitcoin node, + run other stuff in different VMs (it'd have to be without a desktop GUI, naturally)

Vires in numeris
fillippone
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August 03, 2019, 08:05:32 AM
 #23


But really, USB storage, SATA or not, is less than ideal. You can get a Rock64 pro single board for less than $100. You can also get an NVMe or SATA PCI-E expansion card for the Rock64 pro (it has only 1 slot). And there's a 4GB version, you could run a lightweight hypervisor on that, and get a securely compartmentalized home Bitcoin node, + run other stuff in different VMs (it'd have to be without a desktop GUI, naturally)
I have been running my personal BTC+LN node on a Raspi3+ for months now (link to my guide to do so in signature) and I hadn’t a single issue.
I agree USB connections are “ shaky” in theory compared to SATA, but, touch wood, I hadn’t any issue so far.
Of course my node is “for fun”, not holding millions there. If I had to store a lot of money I would walk the extra steps.

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August 03, 2019, 09:42:29 AM
 #24

I have been running my personal BTC+LN node on a Raspi3+ for months now (link to my guide to do so in signature) and I hadn’t a single issue.
I agree USB connections are “ shaky” in theory compared to SATA, but, touch wood, I hadn’t any issue so far.

a defining characteristic of unreliability is: it's unreliably unreliable Cheesy

a USB disk crashing your Pi node is ok when you're only an hour away from where you're running the node. But if you're on vacation hundreds or thousands of miles away, you may find that annoying.

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August 03, 2019, 09:47:22 AM
 #25

I have been running my personal BTC+LN node on a Raspi3+ for months now (link to my guide to do so in signature) and I hadn’t a single issue.
I agree USB connections are “ shaky” in theory compared to SATA, but, touch wood, I hadn’t any issue so far.

a defining characteristic of unreliability is: it's unreliably unreliable Cheesy

a USB disk crashing your Pi node is ok when you're only an hour away from where you're running the node. But if you're on vacation hundreds or thousands of miles away, you may find that annoying.
I misread your previous comment “hundreds of thousands miles away” and I was more worried about your holiday habits than USB reliability ! Wink
I get the point: reliability can be issue also with small amounts.

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August 03, 2019, 11:53:39 AM
 #26

Rasp pi are simply not made for this task.

Cheap used Lenovo tiny PCs do a better job.

Dell has a good small unit. Buy a used one. Many will hold a nvme and a ssd.

I use Mac mini’s 2012 model and or 2014 models.

I clone a backup os with a wallet . And away I go.

I both love and hate RPi units.
To say they are not up to the task is not quite fair, they are up to it but barely.
The 4 (if it was not for the heat issue) is more then up to it.
It's when you are using your RPi as a node & a pi-hole & open VPN front end for your home network all at once you really see problems.
I am actually using the one I got from from the Avalon deal that never happened as a smart controller in the condo.

I have an PowerEdge server running Hyper-V that handles most of my "heavy lifting" but I also have many a RPi sitting around doing stuff too.

The nice thing about them is to play they are cheap and simple.
And, you can power it down from bring your node, swap in a different SD card and now it's back to being your VPN server, power it down again and put in another SD card and it's doing something else.

Do I 100% rely on it. No.

As with everything, YMMV.

-Dave




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philipma1957
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August 03, 2019, 03:02:01 PM
Last edit: August 03, 2019, 03:13:10 PM by philipma1957
 #27

Rasp pi are simply not made for this task.

Cheap used Lenovo tiny PCs do a better job.

Dell has a good small unit. Buy a used one. Many will hold a nvme and a ssd.

I use Mac mini’s 2012 model and or 2014 models.

I clone a backup os with a wallet . And away I go.

I both love and hate RPi units.
To say they are not up to the task is not quite fair, they are up to it but barely.
The 4 (if it was not for the heat issue) is more then up to it.
It's when you are using your RPi as a node & a pi-hole & open VPN front end for your home network all at once you really see problems.
I am actually using the one I got from from the Avalon deal that never happened as a smart controller in the condo.

I have an PowerEdge server running Hyper-V that handles most of my "heavy lifting" but I also have many a RPi sitting around doing stuff too.

The nice thing about them is to play they are cheap and simple.
And, you can power it down from bring your node, swap in a different SD card and now it's back to being your VPN server, power it down again and put in another SD card and it's doing something else.

Do I 100% rely on it. No.

As with everything, YMMV.

-Dave

Yeah  I use them..  

 but used mac minis are pretty much bullet proof in comparison.
you can do linux if you chose.

and

small dell
small lenovo can be found cheaply.


here  are some low cost lenovo


https://www.ebay.com/itm/Lenovo-ThinkCentre-M92p-Tiny-i5-2-9GHz-8GB-500GB-Win-10-Pro/332379682378?

If you really look  sometimes you get them at 100 bucks

some cheap mac minis

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Mac-Mini-Desktop-2012-i5-2-5GHz-4GB-500GB-HDD-C-Warranty/273868158121?

when lucky I get them at 100-125

use this ssd dock

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Blackmagic-Design-MultiDock-2-4-SSD-Port-Thunderbolt-2-Loop-Through/264393927328?

I got mine for 265 on a close out.

they all just work so much better then the rasp pi's  and they don't use a lot of power.

the toughest one to get a bargin  on is the dock from blackmagic.  But it is a 10 year to 15 year item.

I see BTC as the super highway and alt coins as taxis and trucks needed to move transactions.
ETFbitcoin
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August 03, 2019, 04:35:58 PM
 #28

storage is really what holds the Pi back these days. CPU did before, but not since the rPi 2. You can get around the SD card issues by using the most modern rPi's (3B+), as they allow you to boot from a SATA disk, bypassing SD cards altogether.

But since Raspberry Pi highly value cheap barebone PC, SD card is still best option, even though cheap SATA/M.2 SSD exist (with horrible $/GB value & bad performance).

they all just work so much better then the rasp pi's  and they don't use a lot of power.

I agree, it few times higher than Raspberry Pi which only uses 5W at most.

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August 04, 2019, 06:32:05 PM
 #29

Rasp pi are simply not made for this task.

Cheap used Lenovo tiny PCs do a better job.

Dell has a good small unit. Buy a used one. Many will hold a nvme and a ssd.

I use Mac mini’s 2012 model and or 2014 models.

I clone a backup os with a wallet . And away I go.

The problem is validating the blockchain is a pretty single core intensive task so Raspberry type of devices are always going to be very limited in this area unless they can somehow keep pushing clock speeds without sacrificing other things.

Perhaps the best candidate is the Lenovo x200, at 2.4ghz it should be enough, then you've got the fact that you can Libreboot it which is pretty cool considering you are removing all the proprietary blobs that come with the clusterfucks formerly known as BIOSes.
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September 10, 2019, 12:06:59 PM
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 #30

Fyi. in case others are still interessted.

I got a fresh raspberry pi 4 Model B (4GB), connected a SSD using USB-SS and started sync'ing on a fast internet connecting.

After just a few hours I'm at 16% progress with >40GB downloaded and estimated 24 hours left.

Compared to older raspberries, the 4 are blazing fast  Grin
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September 10, 2019, 05:02:57 PM
 #31

@Jbnp could you share few information such as RAM, CPU and Disk usage? I plan to buy one soon.

P.S. i wonder the CPU temperature during sync process.

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September 10, 2019, 06:22:57 PM
 #32

Yeah, CPU temp and eventful heat induced throttling are something I am very interested into.
Blockchain verifying is a CPU RAM intensive tasks, so heat should be a thing to care about.

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September 10, 2019, 08:39:16 PM
 #33

@Jbnp could you share few information such as RAM, CPU and Disk usage? I plan to buy one soon.

P.S. i wonder the CPU temperature during sync process.
I left it sync'ing at my workplace. Will be interesting checking the status tomorrow to see if it could keep up the pace with the larger blocks.
I have a small passive heatsink on the cpu. It gets hot but sync'ing seems to be mostly a single core activity so it doesn't feel critically hot. Don't think it throttled down.
RAM usage was in the range of 1.3 GB when I checked, so don't go for the 1GB variant. It's running raspbian buster lite.
There's plenty of bandwidth to the external SSD through the super-speed USB connection. Also the gigabit LAN is no bottleneck.

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September 10, 2019, 08:58:44 PM
 #34

Oh such a nice thread, my RP 4B 4gb is on its way to me so when it comes (and hopefully I'll have enough time to play with it) I'll post some stats as well. Waiting to get FTTH sometime by the end of the month, then I can give real values.

I have some old laptops laying around - i3,i5, maybe I can make a comparison between them.

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September 11, 2019, 06:25:34 AM
 #35

I have the feeling that heat sink are a unwelcome news for Pi4 owner, and the result of a poor design choice from Raspberry.
Heat sinks are bad for at least three reasons:
  • They are dust collectors and need to be cleaned to maintain efficiency, while this HW should be thrown everywhere and keep functioning for years to come without being touched.
  • They prevent the use of external cases to keep the board cleaned (see above)
  • They are aesthetically horrible (If you don’t agree with the “throwaway statement” and you think you want to see your node)
  • I have a bad feeling for a heat sink being necessary on an hardware that it is used for his reliability, when delivering an unrequested (yet welcome) performance boost.

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September 11, 2019, 08:44:51 AM
Merited by BitCryptex (2), ETFbitcoin (1)
 #36

I believe our ISP or other internet infrastructure has limited the throughput to my raspberry. Maybe someone thought +100GB/day is excessive for a single device  Grin
The sync speed dropped significantly over night. So did CPU usage (and temperature). As far as I can tell, it's limited by the network as neither CPU or disk are loaded.

Screenshot:
http://too-hot.dk/storage/temp/rpi_btc.png

But 45% done after about 20 hours are not bad either :-)

Heat management has been a major concern with RPI4. Unfortunately it's limited by technology. You only get a certain amount of MIPS per watt at a certain technology node. (btw. I used to work for Intel).
RPI4 manages it pretty well i.e. throttles down the clock when temperature exceeds 80C - it's built for operating at those temperatures (I hope). So you can either accept a slight decrease in performance at high workloads or add some heat dissipation capabilities. Or play around with under-volting/under-clocking if that's your thing.
I just got a small heatsink for now (http://too-hot.dk/storage/temp/rpi_heatsink.png) which helps quite a bit. As you can see, it's at 60C with the moderate load. It still reaches 80C at full load though even with this heatsink (however, that requires more active processes than 'just' bitcoin).
There are a lot of cool cases for the RPI4 comming out, where the case is made of aluminum coupled to the CPU.
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September 11, 2019, 09:02:55 AM
 #37

We indeed need cool cases.

Sorry, couldn't resist a silly comment.

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September 11, 2019, 11:28:53 AM
 #38

Will try to order one or both of these 'cool'  Tongue cases from china. There are also options with fans but I really prefer passive cooling for something that is intended for 24/7 use.
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000056606252.html
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000095452880.html
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September 11, 2019, 11:53:21 AM
 #39

There's plenty of bandwidth to the external SSD through the super-speed USB connection. Also the gigabit LAN is no bottleneck.

other performance bottlenecks are:

  • the dbcache setting. With 4GB RAM, setting this to 1GB (i.e. dbcache=1024) should be fine
  • Despite all the RAM, setup a new swapfile (2-4GB) on the SSD, then after turning that new swapfile on, turn off the old swapfile on the slow SD card
  • Use bitcoin 0.18.0+ to get better block processing performance (0.18.0 had a double digit performance increase in the database handling code)

Vires in numeris
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September 11, 2019, 12:52:44 PM
 #40


There's plenty of bandwidth to the external SSD through the super-speed USB connection. Also the gigabit LAN is no bottleneck.


Yes, so long as you don't use a crap drive or one that is using a crap USB -> SATA chip.

I work on too much low end hardware, and some of the cost cutting things are really irksome.

Some of the newer low end external SSDs have worse performance then an older spinning drive.

Will try to order one or both of these 'cool'  Tongue cases from china. There are also options with fans but I really prefer passive cooling for something that is intended for 24/7 use.
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000056606252.html
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000095452880.html


Make sure that there is actual contact between the case and CPU in the proper area. Cheap cases suck.
Just scrapped a bunch of aluminum cases for the RPi3 that had enough space between the heatsinnk that was part of the case and the CPU itself that the thermal pad I put on the CPU was untouched on top Sad

-Dave




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