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INDI Library v1.7.8 Released (11 May 2019)

Mid year release of INDI Library v1.7.8 comes with a few drivers and improvements to to existing drivers.

rpi 3 B+ indi server

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rpi 3 B+ indi server was created by dean

I have an rpi 3 B+ that I would like to control my eqmod mount and CCD gear (camera and guide).
I understand indi server can be run over VNC from another machine running a full install of Kstars/Ekos .
I am aware of astroberry and astropi but I want to leverage the full 64 bit architecture on the rpi.
Does anyone have some suggestions on whether to use 64 bit Ubuntu 18.04 Mate or 64 bit Ubuntu 18.04 server?
I would think Ubuntu server is the route to go since I dont think I need full desktop capability to run indi server and
mount/camera drivers.

BTW, first post to this excellent forum and community!

belt modded HEQ5
Meade 8" SCT
ASI385MC-C
ASI120MM-mini
Orion 60mm guidescope
HEQ5 (belt mod), Lynx USB direct
ASI385MC-Cool, ASI120MM-mini
Meade LX90 8" SCT (deforked), Orion 60mm
Kstars/Ekos
1 week 2 days ago #39200

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Replied by AstroNerd on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

Hello and welcome
Watching this thread with interest... :)
Stellarmate OS on Raspberry pi3b+ controlled with Kubuntu laptop
NEQ6 Pro, belt modded & tuned
Meade series 5000 80mm triplet Apo & Meade 8” SCT (de-forked)
Starlight Xpress SXVR H18, SXVR M25c, Lodestar Guide Camera
Pegasus Ultimate Hub for all USB & Power
Pegasus focus motors on both scopes
The following user(s) said Thank You: knro
1 week 2 days ago #39202

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Replied by kamisan on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

Hi Dean,

I've had great success with Astroberry but as you can see from my last post, one that is nearly concurrent with yours, you need to pay attention to power. Avoid like the plague over-voltage and under-voltage PSU's. Before plugging in power to your Pi test the no-load voltage. It should read 5.2V +/- 0.05V.
1 week 2 days ago #39204

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Replied by dean on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

I may make the jump into Ubuntu server and then git clone and compile indi from
scratch. Thnx for the heads up: I also read a lot of posts on the forum about pi power so I already purchased
an Orico powered 4 usb hub. All the pieces of this puzzle are coming together ... just need the weather to co-op
HEQ5 (belt mod), Lynx USB direct
ASI385MC-Cool, ASI120MM-mini
Meade LX90 8" SCT (deforked), Orion 60mm
Kstars/Ekos
1 week 2 days ago #39206

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Replied by kamisan on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

Hi Dean,

IMHO, the best configuration is to run the server aboard your scope. It's not unusual to have many USB devices: camera, filter wheel, focuser, Flip-Flat, GPS. The more advanced you are, the more devices, and then you need a powered USB hub! Again in my opinion it is best to have the fewest number of wires dangling between your scope and the ground. In the past I've run a Linux laptop on the ground and lots of USB cables connected to devices on the scope. I don't recommend it. Anyhow, good luck! There are lots of configurations.
1 week 2 days ago #39207

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Replied by kamisan on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

Dean,

One more thing I want to add: INDI server is important but also consider the client. The client can run several places: (1) on the same box as the server, (2) on a remote computer on a reliable hardwired network, or (3) on a remote computer on an unreliable wireless network. My choice is #1 although #2 is a close second. (The problem with #2 is that you need to run an Ethernet cable between your scope and your remote location.) I know that people run #3 but understand the following: (1) the "brains" behind astrophotography runs on the client (in other words, the server is just carrying out commands and doing the dirty work,) (2) if you have an unreliable connection between the client and the server then you should not be surprised that your imaging session could be unexpectedly and abruptly interrupted. The advantage of an Astroberry or Stellarmate solution is that client and server run on the same box, and as an added bonus you connect to it via Virtual Access Point, so no need to run Ethernet cables between it and your remote computer. If your connection to Astroberry or Stellarmate is interrupted then astrophotography proceeds uninterrupted. Why? Because the client is running on the server (i.e. Astroberry or Stellarmate). The ONLY negative is having to use "remote desktop" software to check the progress of you image capture. It is less "snappy" than the other solutions.
1 week 2 days ago #39209

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Replied by kamisan on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

Dean,

Just so it doesn't sound like I am receiving kickbacks from the makers of Astroberry and Stellarmate, I have to say that running entirely off of an SD card is less than ideal. They don't last forever, and they will just suddenly fail. Solid State Drives are a great alternative but it requires some DIY work to implement.
1 week 2 days ago #39212

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Replied by dean on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

good points on 1) 2) and 3). My goal is to minimize cable wrap, hence the rpi, and my balcony is wood and surprisingly
the tiniest deflection due to my standing and manual focusing etc. causes things to go "off". I don't mind one ethernet cable
back into the house so Im thinking client+ server on the rpi is the way forward. Thanks for your help, Im fairly new to
astroP but Im enjoying the learning ;)
HEQ5 (belt mod), Lynx USB direct
ASI385MC-Cool, ASI120MM-mini
Meade LX90 8" SCT (deforked), Orion 60mm
Kstars/Ekos
1 week 2 days ago #39217

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Replied by AstroNerd on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

I don’t find the rpi3b+ powerful enough to run all the imaging software, it’s just not got enough grunt, so I run Kstars on my client Linux based laptop and just use the rpi as an INdI server... :)
Stellarmate OS on Raspberry pi3b+ controlled with Kubuntu laptop
NEQ6 Pro, belt modded & tuned
Meade series 5000 80mm triplet Apo & Meade 8” SCT (de-forked)
Starlight Xpress SXVR H18, SXVR M25c, Lodestar Guide Camera
Pegasus Ultimate Hub for all USB & Power
Pegasus focus motors on both scopes
1 week 2 days ago #39219

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Replied by kamisan on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

I have not yet graduated to "advanced imager" so the 3B+ works fine for me. The model 4 will be out just in time but given the weather perhaps it will be the model 5 :-)

Last night there were two objects visible: the Moon and Arcturus. Par for the course.

Makes me wonder why I spend so much on gear when all I get is two opportunities per month to image. Cost-benefit analysis is not good.

The two enemies of astrophotographers are:
  1. Light Pollution
  2. Water Vapor

Air pollution is a distant third. In fact major strides against air pollution have been made in America. Fifty years ago you could see a thick blue haze of car exhaust driving through Manhattan. My eyes would sting. Now you can close your eyes and ears and think you were in Central Park.

IMHO, the enemy is water vapor. Perhaps we could deploy a massive matrix of TEC coolers to condense the vapor to liquid water.
Last edit: 1 week 2 days ago by kamisan.
1 week 2 days ago #39221

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Replied by dean on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

that's funny ... on Thursday night all I got here (Dundas, Ontario) between the clouds rolling in was the moon, Capella,
Arcturus. Thanks everyone for replying with solid advice. I hadn't considered addressing SD card reliability with an SSD drive.
I will post a followup once I implement a solution.
cheers!
Dean
HEQ5 (belt mod), Lynx USB direct
ASI385MC-Cool, ASI120MM-mini
Meade LX90 8" SCT (deforked), Orion 60mm
Kstars/Ekos
1 week 1 day ago #39239

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Replied by pentaxian23 on topic rpi 3 B+ indi server

I highly recommend just buying the StellarMate OS and load it onto an SD card, plug it into your RPi3B+ and you're good to go. Run Kstars at the other end of your ethernet cable and you'll have excellent performance - you can use Wifi but in a populated area its likely to be hindered - at a dark site its not a worry.
1 week 1 day ago #39241

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