It covers flashing the image to an SD, booting from an NVMe drive, and setting up a very basic desktop environment. I’ve also designed a case for it, though it’s untested so it isn’t included in the post yet. I will update the post once the case has been tested.
Thank you @JawnSmith! This setup worked almost perfectly for me. The one thing I had to change: on the login screen, there’s a gear icon, I had to select “Ubuntu on Xorg”
My problem: using the default options I was able to log in, and the OS accepted keyboard input, but application windows would not. I found an article suggesting Wayland could be a problem, and switching back to Xorg seems to have worked around it.
Yeah prices are ridiculous right now… Great to know that the nVidia cards work with xorg though! I didn’t have any extra nVidia cards on hand and honestly didn’t know if that would work. I’ll add a note to the blog post. Thanks for linking me in your DOOM post
The cpupower frequency driver hasn’t been ported to unmatched yet. The clock frequency is set in the fsbl. The original fsbl (fusdk 2021.03) set the frequency to 1.0GHz. The current one (fusdk 2021.03.01 and later) sets the frequency to 1.2GHz. Maybe this image is using the older one? I believe that we are planning to publish a software guide that explains how to configure the clock. You would have to use that info to modify the fsbl if you want to try different frequencies. The same info in a less convenient form is probably also in the fu740 hardware docs.
I suspect that copying the SD card to the SSD may work, but there may be some headaches along the way, considering you’d be copying things from /proc, /dev on a booted system. If you try it can you post your results here along with any special steps you had to take to get it working?
On the SiFive HiFive Unmatched web page https://www.sifive.com/boards/hifive-unmatched
see the link at the bottom for the “HiFive Unmatched SW Reference Manual” document dated May 17, 2021. On page 39 (pdf page 41) it explains how to read the clock info with devmem2 and decode the value. Then looking at the FU740 manual I see that the final frequency is ((26MHz / (R+1)) * 2 * (F+1)) / (1<<Q).
Anyways, as I mentioned before, I think this image has the wrong version of the bootloader, as the old one did set the clock to 1GHz.
The SW Reference Manual shows which bits are R, F, and Q. The hardware manual probably does also. The low 6 bits are R. The next 9 bits are F. Then the next 3 bits are Q. So for the value 0x820544C2, R=2, F=275, Q=2 and we get 26MHz / 3 * 2 * 276 / 4 which is 1.196GHz.
I don’t think that’s any great problem, as those are procedural file systems, not actual things on the disk. dd would not see them, but only the directories they are mounted on.
But anyway, copying from the SD card is soooo slow it turned out to be far quicker to use ssh to stream the .img from another computer and dd the stream directly onto the SSD without touching SD.
I installed gnome and it’s definitely a lot more sluggish than xfce, though things such as dragging a window under the transparent launcher work just fine on my old R5 230 card (radeon driver not amdgpu).
vlc plays video files very well but unfortunately locks up the entire UI in the process and I have to kill not only VLC but also the desktop manager to recover. This may or may not be because I’m using DVI and don’t have a sound device.
I received today the 40mm Noctua fan and installed it. It’s certainly far far quieter, and temperatures are about the same. The screw holes are larger than the ones in the original fan and the head of the long screws pass right through. I used a plastic washer from the M.2 mounting kit included with the board and that works well.