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AudioLinux and NUC Troubleshooting and Tuning

austinpop

Summary of useful findings and recommendations

 

This section will be a living repository of useful info from this thread. It's very similar to a wiki and will be maintained by a small group of thread moderators.

 

Before you get started please refer to the Audio-Linux website to ensure you have the latest info and the proper versions of the OS. Audio-Linux.com  

 

**** Updated for AL 1.0 menu 100 or later.

 

  "First Run" setup for headless.  

 

Setup your NUC with a keyboard, mouse, and monitor to the NUC BIOS settings.  From the menu note the IP address of the machine to SSH into.  From a MAC the macOS terminal program supports SSH:

324537708_ScreenShot2019-01-28at3_02_19PM.thumb.png.739dc7f9cdb05e04da806c7c66877332.png

 

Then it is simpler to cut and paste into the terminal session. After entering the password for the audiolinux user you will be presented with the AL headless menu:

 

1518375894_ScreenShot2019-01-28at3_04_18PM.thumb.png.a7b2867a163f8f014e56e52ff69f94b4.png

 

Option 8 takes you to the command line for the following basic setup.  You will need to be the Root user for this setup and the su command first:

 

su

 

Fix the time zone:  (this is my timezone - look in directory /usr/share/zoneinfo)

 

timedatectl set-timezone America/Chicago
 

Setup and Start NTP daemon (to keep the system time in sync)

 

*** the config file is now properly filled in.

 

Now Start the daemon

timedatectl set-ntp true

 

NOTE: Sometimes the system takes a little while to get synced up.
 

Set hostname  (this provides a unique name for the machine on your network.  Replace <NAME> with your chosen name)

 

hostnamectl set-hostname <NAME> 
 

Once the above items are set up your machine is ready to be configured for say a Roon bridge/endpoint. That is done using the AL menu.  To return to the menu do the following commands.

 

exit

menu

 

----------------------------------

 

For most of us, the following basic settings are key.

From the configuration menu:

6. START and enable Roonbridge

15. SET Realtime Priority to extreme

16. ENABLE ramroot (reboot after)

 

Return to the main menu and reboot the NUC using 

 

11 Reboot

 

------------------

Roon Server setup is a bit more complex and we will cover it completely a bit later.  The key is where you are booting from and where the Roon database is stored.  In general; say a 32gb OPTANE "SSD".

 

  • You have to partition the SSD into a boot drive and a storage drive.  
  • The transfer the USB stick install to the boot partition.  
  • Reboot from the boot partition.  
  • Do the basic setup. Timezone and name
  • Transfer the Roon Database to the storage drive
  • Start the Roon Server
  • .....

 

----------------- 

The machine will reboot and from the display attached to the NUC you can watch it boot up and load into RAM.  Once the AudioLinux menu is showing the endpoint should be available in Roon.    This completes the basic startup sequence.  The system is ready to start testing.    

 

 

Message added by austinpop

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22 minutes ago, tapatrick said:

I like pictures too so I hope this might help with setting up BIOS. Unused USB ports can be disabled too, I just have to find out which is which.

 

If those more knowledgeable could add to this, it would be much appreciated. 

On board devices Audio screen.JPG

USB conf screen.JPG

Secure boot off screen.JPG

Boot configuration Linux screen.JPG

Boot priority screen.JPG

UEFI screen.JPG

Hi Patrick,

 

Thank you for the images!  The 3rd one that shows the secure boot was not clear and this could be crucial for the newbies.  Any possibility to show it clearly?

 

Regards.

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18 minutes ago, greenleo said:

Hi Patrick,

 

Thank you for the images!  The 3rd one that shows the secure boot was not clear and this could be crucial for the newbies.  Any possibility to show it clearly?

 

Regards.

Not sure why this one is not clear @greenleo  The secure boot box is off/unticked


Tidal Streaming only: ATL DC Blocker > Topaz 2.5Kva Isolation Transformer > Sine SA5 Cryo 5 power stripAqvox 8 port network switch NUC Roonserver (16gb Audiolinux Headless RAMboot, Akasa Fanless case) NUC Roon endpoint (4gb Audiolinux Headless RAMboot, Akasa Fanless case) > USPCB>ISO Regen>Battery powered> PS Audio Directstream Junior Dac > Decware SE84UFO3 Mono Amps > Omega Super Alnico Monitors.

NUCs powered by 12v Paul Hynes SR4s & switch powered by modded Teradak DC30W & LT3045 voltage regulators & PoE Quad Cat DC cables

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32 minutes ago, tapatrick said:

Not sure why this one is not clear @greenleo  The secure boot box is off/unticked

Great.  It's unchecked.  This is what the newbies needed.

 

I could see a white box and not sure checked or not, hence the request?

 

Thanks for the reply.

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Guys, did any of you’ll use a grounding strap or anti static gloves while fiddling with the NUC? Is it ok to not use either and just make sure you’re touching some metal and not working on a carpet, would that suffice?

 

In the endpoint NUC, would it matter where you install the 4gb ram, upper or lower slot?

 

Is your NUC compatible with a smart TV or do we need to connect a Computer monitor? Larry had concerns about making it work on a regular Home TV.

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1 hour ago, Narcissus said:

Guys, did any of you’ll use a grounding strap or anti static gloves while fiddling with the NUC? Is it ok to not use either and just make sure you’re touching some metal and not working on a carpet, would that suffice?

 

In the endpoint NUC, would it matter where you install the 4gb ram, upper or lower slot?

 

Is your NUC compatible with a smart TV or do we need to connect a Computer monitor? Larry had concerns about making it work on a regular Home TV.

I installed the RAM in the lower slot simply because it would be easier to add RAM in the future.

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2 minutes ago, Middy said:

@rettib2001

@seeteeyou

All with NUCs

My basic advice..

Overheating issues for extreme mode.

I3 i5 i7 will be different on temps. 

Again CPU heatsink principles remain the same...

 

My celeron NUC With the lapped Akasa heatsink idle's at 39 oC. 

Running 100% utilisation 15 hours 51oC.

Artic MX 4 thermal paste.

 

A tip i read was to watch the individual core temps. A variation of 2 to 3 degrees may be because of placement.

IE tilted

Dust/ hair  debris 

Unflat heatsink

Air bubble in paste..

Over clockers redo the HS until they are happy. 

90+ degrees. Seems high?

Metal on metal is the key. Thermal paste should be butter on bread not cream in a cake..

Compressed air blast on both mating faces. Old material removed and clean..

Ultra sonic clean Heatsink if you are able..

 

Slightly bigger than a grain of rice central on CPU for thermal compound.

 

The Flat CPU will only touch on the highest 3 points!. The celeron Nuc CPU  is naked, no copper nickle metal cap. ( IHS ) just a silver oblong exposed.

NUCi3 i5 i7???

 

My NUC AKASA case has 4 screws  to retain the motherboard.

Try loosening all 4 then tighten 1/4 turns in opposites.

Top left them bottom right

Top right bottom left.

Work around until firm not over tighten.

Use your feel and judgement...

I hope this is best practice and helps for extreme mode.

Consider lapping if an issue!

 

Kind regards

Dave

 

 

Dave, 

 

This is a great post, thanks for taking the time to write it. 

 

I must admit 'heat' has become an issue that follows me around like a bad smell when it comes to computing, in all applications where I use high powered computers. 

I think I'm going to take a look inside the nuc tomorrow. 

 

It's new so I'd be inclined to suspect sloppy thermal paste application at factory level rather than dust build up but I agree that all variables need to considered/explored. 

 

I'd like to find a list of bios tweaks as well, I hear disabling turbo boost might help a little (but I'm clutching at straws). 

 

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If you have the time/ inclination. Lapping/ flat is a huge help. All CPU HS are now lapped flat smooth.

It may be just my case ...and case that...was terrible.  Early akasa..

A better paste never hurts. MX4 is non conductive..tick

Is it an independant block of aluminium with 4 screws.?

Both sides flat smooth. shiny doesnt mean flat..

If you do post a picture from angles with flash. So i can advise.

More to see what others are like. They charge a lot so i expect good engineering and quality. 

Extrusion cases should be cheap to make.. laser cut plate holes and plating?

Nice mark up for exclusivity..

 

Good luck my friend. 

Dave

 

 

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7 hours ago, TubeMan said:

you can boot a LXQT in Cli mode "command Line Mode"

 

CHANGING BOOT DEFAULT

* In audiolinux lxqt you have 2 more options:
audiolinuxclBFQ (headless command line boot)

audiolinuxclEXTREME.conf (headless command line boot, extreme mode)

For changing boot default you can edit as root the file
/boot/loader/loader.conf
and change the line
default audiolinuxBFQ
to
default archlinux (standard archlinux kernel, if installed)
default audiolinux-fallback (realtime kernel bfq, if you have problems at boot because of missing drivers)
default audiolinux  (standard rt kernel, if installed)
default audiolinuxEXTREME (realtime kernel bfq with some parameters that prevent cpu sleep. In

Thanks will try this. For some reason the option screen to change this right before load to RAM doesn't display right on my hardware so I'm never sure

if the option selected was launched

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30 minutes ago, rickca said:

The rule when using a single memory stick is to install it in the slot closest to the CPU.

 

22 minutes ago, lmitche said:

I use the bottom one. Rick is correct. Distance matters.

 

Thats valuable info & I deserve a pat on my back for askin this question :)

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1 hour ago, clipper said:

Which NUC model?

 

I have a NUC7PJYH1 working well with an LPS 1.2 (set at 12 volts).

 

I'm waiting for an Akasa case too, so right now it's running in the stock case.  I have 8 gigs of ram (2 4 gig sticks).

 

Here are my changed Bios settings:

USB Configuration - Portable Device Charging Mode - OFF

Chipset SATA Controller Configuration - SATA Port - UNCHECKED

Onboard Device Configuration - Audio - UNCHECKED

Onboard Device Configuration - HD-Audio DSP - DISABLED

Onboard Device Configuration - Digital Microphone - DISABLED

Onboard Device Configuration - WLAN - UNCHECKED

Onboard Device Configuration - Bluetooth - UNCHECKED

Legacy Device Configuration - Enhanced Consumer IR - UNCHECKED

Primary Power Settings - Enhanced Intel Speedstep Technology - UNCHECKED

 

 

 

It's the NUC7CJYH

 

Interesting. I tried powerimg it with the LPS1.2 at 12v but the LPS1.2 light kept flashing red whenever connected to the NUC (even tho the NUC was off). I wondered if even in standby the NUC draws too much power?

 

Haven't disabled as much as you in the BIOS so might try that.

 

Cheers,

Alan


Innuos Zenith SE (with AQVOX SE Switch) > TX-USBUltra (with sCLK-OCX10) > PS Audio Directstream DAC > Hegel P20 Pre > PS Audio M700 monoblocks > Salk Sound Supercharged Songtowers

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35 minutes ago, BigAlMc said:

 

It's the NUC7CJYH

 

Interesting. I tried powerimg it with the LPS1.2 at 12v but the LPS1.2 light kept flashing red whenever connected to the NUC (even tho the NUC was off). I wondered if even in standby the NUC draws too much power?

 

Haven't disabled as much as you in the BIOS so might try that.

 

Cheers,

Alan

We need to rope in @Superdad, for his first post here...

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1 hour ago, BigAlMc said:

 

It's the NUC7CJYH

 

Interesting. I tried powerimg it with the LPS1.2 at 12v but the LPS1.2 light kept flashing red whenever connected to the NUC (even tho the NUC was off). I wondered if even in standby the NUC draws too much power?

 

Haven't disabled as much as you in the BIOS so might try that.

 

Cheers,

Alan

Alan,

 

What did you have connected to the NUC when the lps1.2 blinked red? How much memory do you have?

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1 minute ago, lmitche said:

Alan,

 

What did you have connected to the NUC when the lps1.2 blinked red? How much memory do you have?

 

Hey Larry,

 

The NUC was off but I'm wondering if that's really standby?

 

Was connected to a USB that connected to my DAC and a LAN cable to my switch. 8 GB of memory.

 

I've disabled Bluetooth and WLAN and SD card in the BIOS but that's it.

 

Am wondering about disabling the other USB ports too but don't want to go fully headless until I bed it down and get SSH working etc.

 

Any immediate thoughts?

 

Cards on the table I'm delighted I got this far! ?


Innuos Zenith SE (with AQVOX SE Switch) > TX-USBUltra (with sCLK-OCX10) > PS Audio Directstream DAC > Hegel P20 Pre > PS Audio M700 monoblocks > Salk Sound Supercharged Songtowers

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9 minutes ago, BigAlMc said:

 

Hey Larry,

 

The NUC was off but I'm wondering if that's really standby?

 

Was connected to a USB that connected to my DAC and a LAN cable to my switch. 8 GB of memory.

 

I've disabled Bluetooth and WLAN and SD card in the BIOS but that's it.

 

Am wondering about disabling the other USB ports too but don't want to go fully headless until I bed it down and get SSH working etc.

 

Any immediate thoughts?

 

Cards on the table I'm delighted I got this far! ?

The nuc will power anything plugged into an USB port while it is powered off.

 

I'd go into bios and disable everything you don't need. Also disconnect any monitor or keyboard. All but the boot device. 4gb of ram should be all you need. That should do it.

 

Don't touch the video settings!

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1 minute ago, lmitche said:

The nuc will power anything plugged into an USB port while it is powered off.

 

I'd go into bios and disable everything you don't need. Also disconnect any monitor or keyboard. All but the boot device. 4gb of ram should be all you need. That should do it.

 

Don't touch the video settings!

 

Thanks Larry,

 

Will give it a go.

 

Cheers,

Alan


Innuos Zenith SE (with AQVOX SE Switch) > TX-USBUltra (with sCLK-OCX10) > PS Audio Directstream DAC > Hegel P20 Pre > PS Audio M700 monoblocks > Salk Sound Supercharged Songtowers

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3 hours ago, davide256 said:

Thanks will try this. For some reason the option screen to change this right before load to RAM doesn't display right on my hardware so I'm never sure

if the option selected was launched

try to disable fastboot in BIOS and disable full logodisplay boot

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After following the 'bigger' thread and feeling good about waiting out on custom clocked server based methods, I am happy to see a simpler approach can improve SQ. I am looking forward to using a NUC + AL to replace modded SMS-200 + TxUsbUltra. Still AL configuration looks quite daunting.

  1. Does anyone offer a service where they could pre-load the correctly configured AL on a NUC and ship? (Or If I have to ask someone real nice or ship a bottle of wine, that is also OK with me)
  2. Can said NUC be powered directly by SR7 or SR4?
  3. Has a Wireless bridge (assuming no DSD rates) been attempted between the NUC and a Headless Roon core running on AL?  and is it equivalent to a modded switch in SQ or close (right now I use TxUsbUltra to clock the switch)

If this is the wrong thread to post, I will post it on the bigger thread.


Desktop: i7 NUC (AL Roon Core)  >> Wireless >>  NUC Roon bridge (SR7) >>  Lush USB  >>  HMS (SR7)  >> Habst  >> DAVE >> (2 x HFC Trinity Helix) >> LCD-4/(KGSSHV Carbon + Sr-009)[Everything plugged into Sound Applications JCR1]

On the go: MacbookPro (Roon) >>  Curious USB >> Hugo 2 >> LCD-i4

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