ZUMspot fails to Initialize

Help and support for ZUMSpot Hardware
Post Reply
K7JV
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2021 8:24 pm

ZUMspot fails to Initialize

Post by K7JV »

When I power on my ZUMspot the screen comes live and shows "INITIALIZING ... Model 7 v2.2", but it never gets past that point. The Wifi "radio" never does appear on any of our computers or phone SSID lists. I tried using a friends Micro SD card and it did not make any difference. I tried re-flashing the original SD card from a fresh and current download from "pistar." It appears that the flash was successful but it did not help. I tried flashing a second SD card but it would not complete the Initialization, either.

Any ideas where to look or what to try, next, other than giving up and purchasing a replacement from HRO?
KE7FNS
Posts: 1705
Joined: Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:11 pm

Re: ZUMspot fails to Initialize

Post by KE7FNS »

K7JV wrote: Sun Apr 04, 2021 2:22 am When I power on my ZUMspot the screen comes live and shows "INITIALIZING ... Model 7 v2.2", but it never gets past that point.
A Nextion displaying "INITIALIZING ... " only means that the Nextion is not receiving serial data properly. It could be that the serial port is incorrectly entered or the baudrate is incorrect for the layout selected.

The Nextion displaying "INITIALIZING ... " has no direct correlation to the hotspot working correctly or not, meaning that the hotspot can be operating correctly even though you could have the wrong serial port assigned to the Nextion and it will not display anything except "INITIALIZING ... ".
K7JV wrote: Sun Apr 04, 2021 2:22 am The Wifi "radio" never does appear on any of our computers or phone SSID lists.
If the hotspot is connected to your router, it will never start up the "Auto AP". Did you write a wpa_supplicant.conf file using the wifi builder and load that on the SD card? If yes, does your router report the hotspot has connected to your network?
K7JV wrote: Sun Apr 04, 2021 2:22 am I tried using a friends Micro SD card and it did not make any difference.
Unless your friend programmed his hotspot with your network settings, it doesn't know how to connect to your network.
K7JV wrote: Sun Apr 04, 2021 2:22 am I tried re-flashing the original SD card from a fresh and current download from "pistar." It appears that the flash was successful but it did not help. I tried flashing a second SD card but it would not complete the Initialization, either.

Any ideas where to look or what to try, next, other than giving up and purchasing a replacement from HRO?
First you need to get your hotspot on your network. You can do that two different ways. Toshen (KE0FHS) explains both of those processes here: https://amateurradionotes.com/pi-star.h ... hingpistar

Then open the dashboard and configure the hotspot.

Then set the Nextion display settings correctly for the type of connection it uses.
You can use the first part of this post to help you select which settings you should be using. (stop when it gets to the Download and run the Nextion Driver Installer part if you don't want the Nextion Driver installed.)
viewtopic.php?p=17437#p17437
If someones previous actions are any indication of their future actions, then I predict the deletion and removal of access will happen at any moment. 7-11-2020.

"07/13/20 This Website Has Been Taken Down" ... again :lol:
K7JV
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2021 8:24 pm

Re: ZUMspot fails to Initialize

Post by K7JV »

In your first response, you mention that the serial port is incorrectly entered. The ZUMspot used to work, but it was inactive for a couple of months. When I tried it again several days ago, it would not power up and function. There is no way for me to see what the serial port settings might be as I can't find any way to communicate with the ZUMspot.

The ZUMspot is not connected to my router. It shows on the router devices list as an "inactive" device, as it used to be on my network. I just followed the instructions and wrote the wpa_supplicant.conf file onto the SD card.

I put the SD card back in with the file written on it and rebooted the ZUMspot and I do not see anywhere that I can "open the dashboard" to configure the hotspot. It still displays "INITIALIZING" and the pi-star "radio" does not appear on my iPhone available networks list or on my Mac available networks list.

Perhaps the radio has failed in the ZUMspot? Is Wifi the only way to talk to it? It has two micro-USB ports and one mini-HDMI port, but aside from the SD card, that is all that there is that might allow talking to the device.
KE7FNS
Posts: 1705
Joined: Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:11 pm

Re: ZUMspot fails to Initialize

Post by KE7FNS »

K7JV wrote: Sun Apr 04, 2021 7:11 pm In your first response, you mention that the serial port is incorrectly entered. The ZUMspot used to work, but it was inactive for a couple of months. When I tried it again several days ago, it would not power up and function. There is no way for me to see what the serial port settings might be as I can't find any way to communicate with the ZUMspot.
No, I said that the Nextion is not receiving serial data. The cause could be a number of things.
K7JV wrote: Sun Apr 04, 2021 7:11 pm The ZUMspot is not connected to my router. It shows on the router devices list as an "inactive" device, as it used to be on my network. I just followed the instructions and wrote the wpa_supplicant.conf file onto the SD card.

I put the SD card back in with the file written on it and rebooted the ZUMspot and I do not see anywhere that I can "open the dashboard" to configure the hotspot. It still displays "INITIALIZING" and the pi-star "radio" does not appear on my iPhone available networks list or on my Mac available networks list.
"INITIALIZING" on the Nextion is irrelevant, and unimportant please quit focusing on it. It is always going to be saying that until it gets proper serial data.

A RPi Zero W can take upwards of 2 to 5 minutes to completely boot. The Auto AP takes another 120 seconds after no network connection has been made. So you might need to wait longer.

Also, remove the SD card and insert it into your laptop, and see if the wpa_supplicant.conf file exists on the SD card, if it worked as it was supposed to do it should be gone. If it isn't gone it either isn't named correctly or you placed it in the wrong location (it needs to be on the BOOT volume), or theres something majorly wrong with the way you created the image.
K7JV wrote: Sun Apr 04, 2021 7:11 pm Perhaps the radio has failed in the ZUMspot?
That could be a possibility, although if the RPi isn't booting properly, it isn't going to have a working OS so nothing is going to work.
K7JV wrote: Sun Apr 04, 2021 7:11 pm Is Wifi the only way to talk to it?
No, it is a standard (stand alone) computer.
K7JV wrote: Sun Apr 04, 2021 7:11 pm It has two micro-USB ports and one mini-HDMI port, but aside from the SD card, that is all that there is that might allow talking to the device.
You can hook up a keyboard and monitor to it. Plug in a miniHDMI cable and an OTG cable into the inner microUSB port and a USB keyboard into that. The outer microUSB is ONLY for power. You must also reboot as it doesn't support hotplugging a HDMI cable.

Watching the monitor during the boot process will tell you if the RPi is booting properly. You should see a color gradient screen, and then Linux terminal messages and then a login prompt.

That will determine if the SD card has been imaged correctly and if the RPi is booting properly.
If someones previous actions are any indication of their future actions, then I predict the deletion and removal of access will happen at any moment. 7-11-2020.

"07/13/20 This Website Has Been Taken Down" ... again :lol:
K7JV
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2021 8:24 pm

Re: ZUMspot fails to Initialize

Post by K7JV »

Ok, I've gained a little, but not enough. I was able to re-format and flash two micro-SD cards, actually. The file I used to flash both of the drives was Pi-Star_RPi_V4.1.4_08-Feb-2021.img.

On both of the cards I put the file wpa_supplicant.conf in the "boot" directory. Prior to doing that, I used the routine on the Pi-Star website for creating that file. On one of them I created it to connect to ANY network, and on the other I created it with the specific SSID and password for my network, in my home.

Both cards allowed the ZUMspot to start up to the point that the Pi-Star-Setup SSID showed up on both my iPhone and my laptop. I was able to connect from both of those devices, too.

But that's where I'm failing, now. Regardless of the SD card I use, and regardless of the platform, perhaps 15 seconds after they connect to the ZUMspot, the ZUMspot radio must drop out just long enough to cause the iPhone or the laptop to revert to another router in our home. The Pi-Star-Setup SSID immediately shows back up, and I can connect again, but the cycle just repeats. I am unable to stay connected long enough to enter the configuration screens, at all.

Any thoughts? It is a great thing that I've at least been able to get the ZUMspot Wifi radio to come live. So we're gaining.
KE7FNS
Posts: 1705
Joined: Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:11 pm

Re: ZUMspot fails to Initialize

Post by KE7FNS »

K7JV wrote: Sat Apr 10, 2021 11:48 pm Both cards allowed the ZUMspot to start up to the point that the Pi-Star-Setup SSID showed up on both my iPhone and my laptop. I was able to connect from both of those devices, too.
Since it didn't correctly connect to your network and the AutoAP started up that means that the information you entered into the wpa_supplicant.conf information was incorrect or there is a conflict connecting to your router.

I don't think you are running an open network, and if you are you should stop that immediately.

If it was using the information in the wpa_supplant.conf file you should never see the AutoAP, and it should show as a device connected to your router.

Check your router settings, the router needs to be set on WPA2.
K7JV wrote: Sat Apr 10, 2021 11:48 pm But that's where I'm failing, now. Regardless of the SD card I use, and regardless of the platform, perhaps 15 seconds after they connect to the ZUMspot, the ZUMspot radio must drop out just long enough to cause the iPhone or the laptop to revert to another router in our home. The Pi-Star-Setup SSID immediately shows back up, and I can connect again, but the cycle just repeats. I am unable to stay connected long enough to enter the configuration screens, at all.

Any thoughts? It is a great thing that I've at least been able to get the ZUMspot Wifi radio to come live. So we're gaining.
I'm not sure why you cannot stay connected to the RPi, it shouldn't be dropping out or disconnecting. Maybe there is some sort of wifi hardware failure on the RPi???

A reboot would take much longer to show up, like 30 seconds + another 120 seconds for the AutoAP to start.
If someones previous actions are any indication of their future actions, then I predict the deletion and removal of access will happen at any moment. 7-11-2020.

"07/13/20 This Website Has Been Taken Down" ... again :lol:
Post Reply