Loading the uConsole OS CM4 module without the RPI IO board?

Is it possible to load the stock OS to the CM4 EMMC without the raspberry IO board?

i have the uConsole, CM4 module and CM4 adapter board.

No, as far as I know. you can’t access the usb host mode functionality while the cm4 is in the uconsole. You need a board with the necessary provisions to flash the emmc.

And just for the record clockwork doesn’t support the emmc functionality with the uconsole, that’s why they sell it and recommend end users purchasing the lite module. This would be an unsupported mod so to speak.

Doesn’t mean it can’t be done but it’s not as trivial as dropping a cm4, flipping a switch, and burning an image on the emmc. I think most people avoid the emmc because unless you really need it, it’s not worth the trouble.

And lastly, you don’t need to buy the official cm4 io board. I just purchased a waveshare cm4 io board for 17.99 on Amazon in the US and it has the ability to address the emmc for writing.

ok, guess i misunderstood, I thought they didnt support the micro SD on the mainboard with the CM4.

If they don’t support either emmc or microSD, where would you boot from?

It boots from the micro sd card


Thanks snoozer, can’t believe I missed that on my post.

The only officially supported boot option is the SD card slot.

Keep in mind too, that the consoles are just now getting into the hands of people. I would imagine we will start seeing all sorts of hackery going on soon enough, just as soon as CWP gets caught up on orders.

Wut?.. The adapter board has sw1… you short the one closer to the sw1 label to boot from USB… It’s in The adapter board schematic… nRPI_BOOT is the signal name… Across the box… If you short the other one… it holds the memory as read only. It’s made for dip switches… But they didn’t attach them…

Edit: and the emmc model is not compatible with the SD card slot. That’s an rpi thing.

edit again

this switch specifically… even says it on the schematic…

EDIT: a third time… I backtrack a little… because i haven’t used an eMMC version… so i can’t confirm that…
Don’t want to step to hard since… i dunno for sure… but why would taht be there if the usb wasn’t usable for that… dunno…

The eMMC CM4 model works fine in the uConsole but you must flash the eMMC with some other IO breakout board:

And the physical MicroSD card slot is disabled/unavailable. The CM4 has the ability to connect to one storage device*, on the eMMC models the connections are routed to the eMMC chip and not to the external SD card pins.

Edit: *It can connect directly to one SD/MMC like device natively. There is the ability to use USB or PCIe storage should the IO board support that.

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As I understand it, the advantage of the eMMC is that it is way faster than the SD card.

No question there, it’s much much faster. The sd card is just “easier” for a product where speed isn’t as critical, this is a maker/tinker/basic computing board after all.

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I lost so many sd cards to failure tho… it’s the n°1 reason for me to avoid headaches in the future to not use SD cards anymore for my OS. I hope I’ll find a good solution to add flash storage to non-emmc CM4 … or maybe I just wait for a CM5 with flash?

I haven’t heard any movement on a cm5 announcement yet, if it was me I would just rock an sd card in the interim. I think everyone here is wishing, hoping, and praying for a cm5 that will drop in the carrier board and work in the uconsole, but that remains to be seen.

Have you tried industrial SD cards? Ive never had a problem after switching to them a few years back, small trade off between speed and reliability but worth it for the pi world IMO.

To bring it back full circle, you can use the Emmc, nothing is really stopping you, it’s just not provisioned on the uconsole. you just have to use a carrier board. I love the waveshare mini usb A carrier board, it’s cheap and it works for flashing Emmc.


I feel like cm5 will be announced on pi day

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I am a bit concerned that the CM5 will take way more power. Can the main board provide that much and what will the battery life be?

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I am already surprised how much power the devterm CAN deliver to the a06 and CM4.

you see, there is a “slim” version of the CM4, sold by raspberryPI themselves (but only in bulk) that has a CM3 footprint. (already not great for us because only 1gig of ram) but that one clocks much lower because power limitations.

I suppose we will have to wait for the cm5 specs. if it fits at all: worst case we can underclock it.

I have one of the CM4S units, but current software doesn’t support the off board WiFi/BT. I used it with an external USB WiFi thing for awhile. It worked fine. Mine had the eMMC on it so it was fast. I seem to collect things like that. Currently running the normal CM4 with 8G Ram and 32G eMMC on it. Does well, still attempting to get used to the keyboard. For really low power the R-01 works, but it is still very much a work in progress.

how did you go about loading the Clockwork OS onto your CM4 module?

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I also purchased the I/O board that is designed for doing just that. For the CM4S unit, you need the I/O board designed for the CM3. A friend of mine had one of those.

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i’ll note that in terms of battery life, the stock axp228 driver is borked on the uConsole, and only gets 8Wh, no matter how much energy is capable of being stored in the cells

been like that on my devterm too

from digging around the code it’s hardcoded, unsure of how to fix it.