Ordering uConsole now - what to read up on while waiting?

Hello all, I am ordering now (well, in two weeks) a uConsole.

I know there is a bit of a wait - and I want to use that wait to read up, download soft, get accessories etc.

I am a relative newbie when it comes to the Raspberry Pie and a total newbie to the uConsole.

Would you have any recommendations to what I should read up on; what sd card images I should download; what must have accessories I should buy (other than the batteries - which I already have)?

Thank you so much for any pointers!

You may start from here: clockworkpi · GitHub

Thank you. Yes, I have seen that. I am a bit lost with the content on the GitHub - that is why I was hoping for some additional suggestions!

There are some expansion stuff like the uPico and uHub on tindie that replaces the 4G expansion board

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have you used Linux before? the only images (for now) that work with the uConsole are the ones provided by Clockwork. And they are not as beginner friendly as Linux Mint or Ubuntu as they’re based off a custom Debian image. I would recommend switching from LXDE/XFCE as the provided DE’s to a friendlier DE like Gnome, KDE, or Cinnamon. Cinnamon hasn’t impacted the performance of my CM4 unit.
so, if you’re not familiar with Linux, I’d recommend you download VirtualBox by Oracle (free to download https://www.virtualbox.org/wiki/Downloads) and Raspberry Pi OS 64-bit (Operating system images – Raspberry Pi) and spin up a virtual machine because that’s basically the Clockwork OS, but the Clockwork OS has a bunch of custom scripts/code for uConsole specific things so idk if using Clockworks OS will work in a VM.
Also, the uConsole comes with a 32gb SD card pre-installed with this image. You’ll have about 25gb of free space, which, up to you, might or might not be enough space.
In this thread people linked a few screen protectors that fit the uConsoles screen
Does anyone know of any screen protectors that are a near perfect fit for the screen size? - #7 by Arkaium
As well, in this thread people discussed carrying cases you can buy online for the uConsole.
Padded Carrying Case - #16 by pwborders
Based on the thread below the uConsole charges at around 15w. So a 5v 3a or greater phone charging brick as well as a quality USB-C cable should do. I have noticed my uConsole charges slowly no matter if im using my laptops 60w charger or a 15w phone charger. As noted in this thread, there was a power draw limit set in October but I don’t know if the uConsole still has this limit in place. It would be cool if someone with the proper power measuring equipment would make a new post on this.
uConsole: How Does Charging Work? - #33 by scyto

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Thank you, this is super helpful.

I have some (limited) experience with Linux - need to learn more. Will follow your suggestion to get up to speed (using VirtualBox)

For the images - I will get the version without the CM4 module (will get the module locally) - I guess then they will not send the 32gb SD card? I have downloaded already the two images from the CWPi website - I think that should work for the initial start?

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make sure to add to your order the CM4 adapter board! and yea i don’t think they’ll include the 32gb SD card.

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they don’t provide an SD card with that order - be sure to order a CM4 with an internal wifi - because the CM4 firmware doesn’t look at the adapter board and the GPIO doesn’t include the pin for using the motherboard wifi… may still be able to use a USB dongle…

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so how does this differ from the wifi set up already used in the uConsole?

Are you certain? On the ordering page it seems the CM4 adapter is included?

I purchased the cm4 adapter - and attempted to use it - but the cm4 processor I purchased did not have wifi according to the cryptic notes it can’t use the main board wifi other uses indicated this is due to a lack of GPIO off board for wifi . Also the adapter board when ordered separately did not come with a loaded SD card.

Can you please elaborate? My understanding so far was that all cm4 boards have wifi? There is no version that has no wifi as per the info i have?

Yes the cm4 adapter board is included even without ordering a cm4 module from what is written on the actual clockwork pi website for the cm4 model (cm4 and 4g are the only 2 that are optional) but when it comes to cm4 with wifi, there are some that come without wifi so keep an eye out for that if you are looking to find your own one, also make sure you get one without emmc memory also known as lite because you wont be able to use an sd card with it and will have to flash the os onto the emmc. Also im not sure if this is correct or not but if you order a uconsole (cm4 model) without a cm4 then you might not get an sd card with it so you might need to source your own, itll be a 32gb one so i dont think its a huge loss
Edit ~ yes it is the case with the sd card when purchasing a uconsole without a cm4 core module, written in the additional section at the bottom

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Oh youll have to find your own batteries too but they arent hard to get yourself

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Thank you Enrico, all clear!

I had a 64GB laying around and wrote the image to it… also the CM4 I have has no wifi and is not emmc so it reads the SD card on the motherboard , I’m using a USB wifi dongle and its up and working - speed is pretty good although I’m not pushing it hard (not tried SDR , or ham radio decoding software) I have a laptop for that …

Thank you. What is the model of your CM4? I thought all computer modules have wifi?

I will try sdr when i get the setup :slight_smile: to have a portable unit. I wonder if my Hi end sdr receiver will get enough power?

We will see I guess

So i got a cm4 lite 8gb with wifi, the model number is CM4108000, the 1 just after cm4 means itll have wifi (0 will mean no wifi) and the 8 is 8gb ram (4 will be 4gb, 2 will be 2gb…), im presuming the last three 0s are for emmc but not fully sure on that

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I mistakenly purchased the one model WITHOUT wifi … oops ! so I’m using a wifi dongle also purchased the USB expansion board one of the members built - but it 3 USB-C ports so an adapter set of cables is on the way…

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I subscribe to updates from this forum and read them. (-;