Posts Tagged arm
Orange Pi Zero with 512MB RAM, expansion board and black case is sold for sub-$20, including postal costs, and it is so far the cheapest Linux device you can buy.
Armbian project provides a dedicated image for this board. The nightly build is quite stable, and there’s also legacy kernel which works well.
The computer is equipped with a 100/10 Ethernet NIC, and the top throughput that I could achieve was about 90Mbps.
The on-board WiFi adapter is of very poor quality: regardless of the antenna attached, it gives about 6Mbps connection speed and excessive packet loss (up to 20% lost pings). It’s useless for any practical application, and it’s easier to disable it completely.
The two USB ports on the expansion board are not enabled by default in the legacy kernel. You need to add the following line to /boot/armbianEnv.txt file, and reboot the box:
In order to disable the onboard WiFi, comment the top line, and add another line in /etc/modprobe.d/xradio_wlan.conf:
#options xradio_wlan macaddr=DC:44:6D:1F:3C:14 blacklist xradio_wlan
Then, run the following commands to update the kernel boot parameters:
depmod -ae update-initramfs -u
The onboard USB ports are not extremely fast: with an GigE or Wifi USB adapter, the maximum speed that I could achieve was about 40Mbps. But at least you get a stable and reliable connection.
The micro-USB OTG port is used for powering the device, and the board can freeze if the power consumption on USB ports is too big. For example, an external USB drive is very likely to knock the whole thing off.
Network Manager is installed by default by Armbian, and that allows easy plug-and-play WiFi configuration, adding new SSID and passwords from “nmcli” command-line interface.
All in all, it’s still quite a pretty device in a small enclosure. It can be used as a low-cost or throw-away network agent or VPN gateway for remote access. Also it can act as a measurement agent for all kinds of network testing, especially if you need a massive deployment and price difference is important.
The dedicated ARM hosting servers at Scaleway appear to be a decent platform for a mid-sized PBX.
In short, the platform displays the following results in performance tests:
- OPUS<->PCMA transcoding: 16 simultaneous calls with at about 95% total CPU load and no noticeable distortions.
- SILK<->PCMA transcoding: 72 simultaneous calls were going without distortions, with average total CPU load at 63%. Higher number of calls resulted in noticeable distortions.
- G722<->PCMA transcoding: 96 simultaneous calls without distortions, at 76% CPU load, and noticeable distortions for higher numbers.
Scaleway (a cloud service by online.net) offers ARM-based dedicated servers for EUR9.99/month, and the first month free. The platform is powerful enough to run a small or FreeSWITCH server, and it shows nice results in voice quality tests.
These instructions are for Debian Wheezy distribution.
By default, the server is created with Linux kernel 3.2.34, and this kernel version does not have a high-resolution timer. You need to choose 3.19.3 in server settings.
At Scaleway, you get a dedicated public IP address and 1:1 NAT to a private IP address on your server. So, FreeSWITCH SIP profiles need to be updated (“ext-rtp-ip” and “ext-sip-ip” to point to you rpublic IP address).
FreeSWITCH compiles and links “mpg123-1.13.2” library, which fails to compile on ARM architecture. You need to edit the corresponding files to point to “mpg123-1.19.0” and commit back to Git, because the build scripts check if any modified and uncommitted files exist in the source tree. Also the patch forces to use gcc-4.7, as 4.6 is known with some problems on ARM architecture. Read the rest of this entry »