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Old Products => Guruplug General Discussion => Topic started by: Confusticated on 04 October 2010, 06:25:30 pm

Title: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 04 October 2010, 06:25:30 pm
Not any more, it still has a fan, and is still audible, but I am not finished with it yet.
The sound level is similar to your average fixed disk, and the plug is now running
even cooler than when I received it (which is hardly surprising).
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: SRG on 04 October 2010, 08:34:34 pm
So, what is the modification you applied ?
You removed the PSU to make it external ?
Put a heatsink on the CPU, and a bigger fan on the top ?
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 04 October 2010, 09:20:03 pm
Don't ask, I will not give a detailed description until 'I' decide to.
I am a Darwinian (I believe in evolution) if you clone what I have done, nobody gains.
Use the brain cells God gave you (see line above :>), and D E V E L O P!
Take other's ideas and improve them, make them your own, evolve the Plug.
The best developed Plug will out-survive all other Plugs, mine included.
That will be the quietest and coolest (pun intended).
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: sfzhi on 05 October 2010, 08:13:25 am
Take other's ideas and improve them.
You are giving this nice piece of advice while refusing to tell anything about your ideas. Sounds a bit hypocritical to me.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: PacoLM on 05 October 2010, 09:02:29 am
Hi,

 I also believe in evolution, but this sometimes does not happen without share knowledge and cooperation....

 I believe changing the ball bearing fan to a sleeve bearing fan will reduce the noise (as he wrote in his post http://www.newit.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,575.msg2824.html#msg2824). I still didn't received mine, but I will do the modification if the noise is really high. Also I believe there is some space to put some circuitry to control the speed of the fan depending on the temperature inside (more air flow needed). Will post advances...

 Hope it helps,

 Paco

Edited after reading previous Confusticated post: http://www.newit.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,575.msg2824.html#msg2824
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 05 October 2010, 03:58:39 pm
sfzhi, seek and ye shall find.....
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: sfzhi on 05 October 2010, 04:09:20 pm
sfzhi, seek and ye shall find.....
I don't need to. I have found my solution long ago. I was just trying to put a word for those who haven't...
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: mabuhay on 07 October 2010, 01:23:44 pm
Don't ask, I will not give a detailed description until 'I' decide to.
I am a Darwinian (I believe in evolution) if you clone what I have done, nobody gains.

So why exactly did you start this post? Just for telling everyone you modified it? good to know, but not so helpful
If none would share new ideas, everyone has to do the same thing again and again. If you share, it can be improved and new ideas can develop from it
That's why we go to school to learn things which someone figured out already, so we don't have to start from the very beginning ;)
but then you say "Take other's ideas and improve them"... so I will come back later when I get my GuruPlg back to see if your idea is interesting for me :)

mfg
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 07 October 2010, 05:05:32 pm
You have misread what has already been posted in this thread, let alone what has already been posted on the web.
You will only get out of it what you put in. Did you go to school to learn or to be taught ?
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: SRG on 07 October 2010, 07:38:24 pm
Don't ask, I will not give a detailed description until 'I' decide to.
I am a Darwinian (I believe in evolution) if you clone what I have done, nobody gains.
Use the brain cells God gave you (see line above :>), and D E V E L O P!
Take other's ideas and improve them, make them your own, evolve the Plug.
The best developed Plug will out-survive all other Plugs, mine included.
That will be the quietest and coolest (pun intended).

Weirdest thread i've seen for ages. Have fun with your guru plug and your very private ideas.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 08 October 2010, 03:42:45 pm
Thanks, I'm achieving my aim then. My ideas might be private, but facts...
here are some that may already be published, but I couldn't find them anywhere.

Guruplug Server Plus U-SNAP\GPIO mapping pinout information.
With the Guruplug Server Plus standing on end (and the logo text the correct way up) pin 1
is nearest the bottom (making pin 10 nearest the top, the opposite of the listing below).

pin  GPIO#
 1      39
 2      43
 3      40
 4      41
 5      42
 6       -     RESET
 7       -     3v3
 8       -     GND
 9       -     NC
10    38

Pin 9 was probably meant to be a KEY, just block the hole off and it becomes one :>)
E&OE
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: nickeb72 on 08 October 2010, 07:49:51 pm
Is it possible that you manage to set the rpm of the fan from software?

Sounds nice :-)
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 09 October 2010, 12:02:01 pm
It would be fairly easy to use a number of the GPIO pins to form a passive D to A converter.
You may need a buffer transistor for a little level shifting\cuurent handling capability.
Two GPIO pins would give you four levels OFF, SLOW, MEDIUM, FAST. That would probably be
sufficient for controlling any cooling fan. There is plenty about passive D to A's on the web.......
Title: Measuring temperature
Post by: kleptog on 09 October 2010, 03:51:46 pm
I'm still looking at things I might change to reduce the noise. However, to know whether what I'm doing is sensible I need some way of measuring the temperature of the device. How are other people doing it?

I saw someone was playing with a one-wire temperature sensor but that sounds pretty advanced. An infra-red camera is not something I have lying around.

Can you just let it run and will it reset when it gets too warm, or can you actually break it that way?

Thanks in advance,
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: kleptog on 10 October 2010, 08:18:34 pm
Maybe interesting:

http://bzed.de/posts/2010/09/refactoring_the_guruplug_server_plus/

Here someone has attached heat sinks to most of the chips on the board, for the the memory, the PHY (whatever that is) and the CPU. Along with some holes in the case that seems to have done the trick.

Anyone know if you can use those meat thermometers to measure temperatures of chips? I'm new to this hardhacking thing.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 11 October 2010, 08:04:23 pm
Proper copper heatsinks are an obvious but smart move providing you don't mind either re-boxing the plug or ripping out the power supply to make the necessary room.
You will need to be careful about the SoC, as the centre of the chip is recessed (the silver disc area in the pictures) and requires a matching heatsink which may be difficult to obtain.
The Phy chip drives the Gb Ethernet ports, and is responsible for a considerable amount of heat when active. Luckily the top of the chip is flat, almost any copper heatsink (cut to size) could be glued on with proper thermal resin with a good result.

Yes, (and no) I have a digital food thermometer in my computer toolbox which I have used for years on conventional computers. It is not possible to use it on the Guruplug with any
degree of accuracy.
For long term, I am currently investigating using a one-wire temperature sensor.
For short term, I am considering attaching thermistors in a few critical places with flying lead to the outside world so I can attach a multimeter.
I can then comparatively measure the temperature (within 5%) by heating up an identical thermistor attached to my digital thermometer until it yields the same value.

Don't loose sight of the facts.....
The Guruplug creates approx 5W of heat (previously in a confined passively ventilated space, causing thermal runaway) that is what needs to be removed, not the 75-120W of a conventional desktop cpu.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: apemberton on 12 October 2010, 04:18:17 pm
I noticed that with the kernel 2.6.35.7 I have installed on my GP's have a fancontrol module which is started at boot time. I have no idea of its configuration or use. Since there are no publically available datasheets for the Marvell Kirkwood (AFAIK), I have the feeling that is as much use as a chocolate fireguard. It would be nice to use it with a fan though. I'd still like passive cooling to cut down noise though. It would be good to harvest the heat too.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: kleptog on 12 October 2010, 08:20:05 pm
Proper copper heatsinks are an obvious but smart move providing you don't mind either re-boxing the plug or ripping out the power supply to make the necessary room.

When I read this I didn't quite understand, but then I didn't realise quite how little space there is between de CPU and the power supply. But you're right, it's only 5W, so maybe even a small heat sink with the fan set to a low speed will be sufficient.

I got a tip from someone about something called an LM35, which does temperature measurements in a single chip and can be read out using an ordinary voltmeter. Seems like it might be a simple solution to the temperature measuring problem.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: sfzhi on 13 October 2010, 10:49:56 am
Since there are no publically available datasheets for the Marvell Kirkwood (AFAIK)
All you have to do is type "88F6281" in Google search.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: apemberton on 16 October 2010, 10:27:27 am
OK Thanks. I guess Marvell have split the hardware datasheet from the software model datasheet and of course the ARM9 core will be on the ARM site.

Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 25 October 2010, 03:00:45 pm
Cut vents through the power supply partition...
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 25 October 2010, 03:04:02 pm
So air may flow out past the PSU components...
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 25 October 2010, 03:07:21 pm
Solder a sub-miniature red LED in series with the fan...
(I socketed mine to make it easily changeable, you don't need to)
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 25 October 2010, 03:08:55 pm
Cut an inlet port in the top of the plug and fit the fan...
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 25 October 2010, 03:13:06 pm
NOTE: Position the inlet carefully so that it includes all three chambers made by
the natural dividers of the power supply insulating material, and the daughterboard.  
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 25 October 2010, 03:28:45 pm
Not an ugly plug, but not silent either. The fan may sound awful to start with as
the ball bearings rattle around, a couple of hours running and it should settle down.

The problem is, in a nutshell, the ball bearing. A sleeve bearing fan running  at this
super-low speed would be perfectly adequate cooling wise and last years, it would
also be silent. I have not taken temperature readings yet, as no external part of the
plug gets warmer than my hand, there is no point until I can 'glue' probes to the
chips themselves and run it with the case closed..

The cheapest 20mm fan I have found available to non-trade (orders less than 1000)
is £15. If anyone knows different, or of something that contains a 20mm fan that
can be bought cheaply, please post.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: kleptog on 25 October 2010, 09:32:21 pm
Thanks for the images, I hadn't thought of those possibilities.

I've done some measuring and it seems that while the fan is important, it doesn't need to do much at all. The difference between the fan running full blast and barely audible is (so far) about 5 degrees. Completely off is a separate category altogether and a lot harder to measure.

Cutting a hole in the topside where you put the fan seems to me to be an excellent idea I was definitely considering that. What I'm interested is is what you used to cut the plastic? I haven't been able to determine the type of plastic so I'm not sure which tools I can safely use on it. (I'm not a hard-hacker usually). Those are some very nice holes you've made there.

I've looked for heatsinks but I have not found any small enough. 5mm high is about the minimum and that really places you right against the power supply, which doesn't seem like a good idea.

I'm hoping to finish my temperature measurements in the next few days (there's never enough time) so I hope it will help people out.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 25 October 2010, 09:58:42 pm
All work was carried out with standard household tools, there are three techniques you could try.

1, Melt/burn it out with a soldering iron (messy and smelly).
2, Mark a circle and drill lots of 3mm dia holes around the circumference
    and then file it out smooth (the Dremmel approach).
3, Attach a hole cutter to the end of your household DIY electric drill (and live dangerously).

I, of course, chose number three.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 19 November 2010, 07:51:50 pm
My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....it is now in fact almost silent and running cool.

I have swapped out the fan for another, at a different size of 25x25x10 @ 5v.
The 10mm dimension permits the manufacturer to use a slightly better bearing.
I have to get to within 150mm of the plug to be able to hear the fan at all.
Result!  ;D
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Rexyboy on 04 January 2011, 10:06:25 am
Hi,
After reading through a few Guruplug cooling threads I decided to make a few simple changes myself.  I am now running a 40x40mm fan which is cool and silent (until you put your ear against it).

Below are a few photo's.  If anyone is interested in the details, let me know.

Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Rexyboy on 04 January 2011, 10:07:45 am
And the end shot.....  You may notice that I am still to pop in a few nuts and self tapping screws.

Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: mabuhay on 12 January 2011, 08:06:45 pm
Great to see all these ideas :)

I also modified my GuruPlug. If anyone is interested, here are my notes about improving the cooling (http://myownhomeserver.ch/en/improved-cooling) and making the fan more silent (http://myownhomeserver.ch/en/silent-cooling).

@Rexyboy: my fan is still a little loud. A bigger fan like yours would be another big improvement i think. Is it a ball bearing fan like the one built into the GuruPlug or another bearing type? Is it just a 5V fan running at full speed?

mfg
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: mururoa on 18 February 2011, 08:54:41 am
I've done a much more easy mod.
I removed the PSU and the 2 cm fan.
Then I installed a 5 cm 12V fan on the bottom of the case powered with the 2 wires of the original fan so 12V --> 5V. Without the PSU in the case the fan blow directly on the MB.
I put the PSU in a smal Teko box with a female plug. It is still connected to the device with the original plug that goes outside of the box
And that's it guruplug server plus + 5 cm fan + Teko box + female PSU.
Now the device is just cold anytime with no noise
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Drumknott on 20 February 2011, 06:08:24 pm
I'm going to start modding my plug, my tool supply is fairly limited so I think my first mod is going to be to remove the PSU and then stick a resistor on the fan to quiet it down a bit.

I am a bit wary of creating my own PSU, sounds like an accident waiting to happen, so I think I'm going to buy this: http://www.rapidonline.com/Electrical-Power/Power-Supplies/Plug-In-PSUs/31W-Interchangeable-plugtop-desktop-switch-mode-power-supply/81329/kw/85-3120?source=googleps&utm_source=googleps

and then wire it in to my guruplug
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: regmund on 21 February 2011, 09:40:20 pm
@mururoa

I am quite keen on your simpler mod idea, but I would love to have a better idea of the equipment you've used to replace the fan and psu and your new psu case.

Could you provide some more (or preferably) links to these.

I've not heard of Teko boxes, does the guruplug server plus psu get hot/warm? and if so, how well ventilated is the teko case that you have chosen?

Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: yj on 11 June 2011, 02:52:09 pm
in case you're interesed in, this is what I made out of my guru plug server plus:
http://cesoft.free.fr/guruplug/IMAG0113.jpg
http://cesoft.free.fr/guruplug/IMAG0114.jpg
http://cesoft.free.fr/guruplug/IMAG0115.jpg

no more heat problems now.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 09 December 2012, 06:17:37 pm
The graph shows the temperature of the modified GuruPlug closely following the ambient temperature + 30 Deg.C whilst running at approx %15 CPU usage.
The 2 Degree steps coincide with one ethernet port link becoming active (as the connecting hub is switched on\off, which has a greater effect than increasing CPU usage).
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: Confusticated on 25 February 2014, 07:49:10 pm
Three and a half years of continuous operation have taken their toll, the fan has slowed and become offensively noisy.
The SoC now runs at 25 Deg C above ambient temperature, and whilst this is no issue during the winter could be problematic during the warmer summer temperatures.
As the Guruplug itself is fine, and so is the SDHC card, I intend to source a replacement fan.
Title: Re: My GuruPlug is not a hairdryer....
Post by: apemberton on 26 June 2014, 08:59:20 am
Finally I have rebuilt my three Guruplug+ into a Mini-ATX Master Cooler case with a raspberry Pi as the temperature monitor and fan controller. Power supply is by an old 250W PC power supply - lots of 5V current!. There are 3 2.5" SATA drives which use an eSata to sata cable (hard to find). The three Guruplugs are acting as routers with DHCP server, BIND9 and Quagga. Routing is RIP as that matches the DSL router. The Guruplugs are now on their second RTC battery replacement and, hopefully, the lower temperature will prolong their life. Routing configuration is a triangle so that if a Guruplug fails (usually bad disk writes), routing for Home Automation devices, PBX, etc. to the 'net is maintained. SNMP is active from another, external Sheevaplug running MRTG. Temperature is monitored by the RaspberryPi with DS18?20 sensors attached to the Guruplug's heatsinks. OWFS is used to collect temperature information which is picked up by a wget from the SNMP server running RRDtool. The latter will be replaced by MODbus which will be more efficient when I have finished writing the code. A Piface operates the fans through it's relays. Each Guruplug has a JTAG box attached where the USB is attached to a (awful - Elite Silicon device running Busybox) 4 port USB to ethernet 'hub' which allows console access from my Windows desktops when necessary. The Guruplug's reset switches have been removed and the pads wired to toggle switches on the rear of the PC case. The RasperryPi has also been fitted with a reset switch and has the console TTY pins wired through a USB to serial TTL cable and also attached to the aforementioned USB to Ethernet hub.

I am pleased with the result but it has required considerable time and effort on essentially obsolete products. I am now considering the future of the Guruplugs, although not a short term project. Mirabox's would be too expensive and would not offer any advantage (no Sata or eSata). I will likely go for Level 3 Switches for routing although there are no inexpensive devices, so far as I know, that have the flexibility of a full Linux device. In particular, a DNS server is not present which would require another 2 boxes just to run BIND.