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Author Topic: Guruplug-- Was it a mistake, should I return it?  (Read 3556 times)
marse5368
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« on: December 30, 2010, 08:19:01 AM »

I just got a Guruplug, foolishly (like many others it seems) I was impressed enough with the site and the specs not to bother googling too much about it.

Now I find a lot of posts saying it has all sorts of issues to do with heat. I've run it for a day and not encountered such issues but am thinking now is the time to decide: Return it or Not?

What do others advise?
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restamp
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« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2010, 09:25:31 AM »

My advice: Aside from avoiding connecting it to a 1 GB ethernet, which is where I believe most of the heat issues reside, plug it in and enjoy it.  The GuruPlug is not a finished product.  Rather, it's a device for hacking and/or development.  So, if it breaks, fix it!

(What were you planning to do with your GuruPlug anyway, marse5368?)
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marse5368
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« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2010, 11:36:01 AM »

Thanks for the response restamp, that is encouraging!

My plans for the guruplug were .. not exactly specific, 'tinker' I believe is as specific as I got. Generally have a fiddle and break it and fix it and see what projects I can cook up. I think that viewing it has an unfinished product to hack at is a great way to view it. Cheers.
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doragasu
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« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2010, 01:58:24 AM »

If you don't mind modding it, you can keep it, but if you don't want to mess with fans, sinks, modding the box, adding an external power supply, etc., you should return it ASAP.

I'm a busy man and I had to waste a lot of time trying to get my GP+ to work properly. I regret I didn't return it...
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KMarshall
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« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2011, 12:38:28 PM »

I'm not trying to burst anyone's bubble, but I ordered a GuruPlug Server Plus and received it a bit over a month ago. I bought it primarily for HTTPD and irssi. Unfortunately (even with the noisy fan), the box hasn't been doing very well on wifi 'or' Ethernet. When I SSH to it and start typing in IRC, my connection drops out quite a bit. This is one of the newer ones with a (very noisy) fan. Even when I'm at home the box would drop off the network randomly. Eventually after a couple weeks of usage, it started becoming unresponsive until I power cycled it. I tried fixing the issue by disabling bluetooth and wifi and using only Ethernet, but that didn't seem to help either.

I don't know if this is normal or if it's due to me doing an apt-get update; apt-get upgrade on the box (with the default repos). Possibly there is a bug in one of the upgraded packages? One note on the repos too - there are a couple factory IPs that should be removed.

I turned it off a couple weeks ago due to the frustration and noise.

Has anyone else had stability issues with the GuruPlug Server Plus (Noisy Edition)?
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marse5368
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« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2011, 02:25:02 PM »

Thanks for the responses, I'm not totally against modding the thing (although an external power supply seems a little far, I bought this thing for its compactness!) but am starting to wonder if returning it may be an idea. However, I see on the forum issues with sheevaplug too, which as far as I'm aware is one of the few rivals. Oh well!
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victor.martin
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« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2011, 01:35:51 AM »

i think you shuold return if you are  having a problem with guruplug Many people have reported major heating issues on these Guruplugs in the past, ...
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radael
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« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2011, 12:38:16 PM »

However, I see on the forum issues with sheevaplug too, which as far as I'm aware is one of the few rivals. Oh well!

It seems most of the problems with the SheevaPlug were with the poor capacitors in the original power supplies.  GlobalTech claims that they have a new supplier.  I received a Sheeva in 2010/12 (in the U.S.) with a new-style PSU, so am able to confirm that at least some of the current deliveries are with the new PSUs.

The problems with the Sheeva seem to have declined more recently, so it appears that the new PSUs have been an improvement.  However, there are still a few occasional complaints.  As with the first wave, this seems to be associated with usage on 240V mains power or with an unpowered USB device.
So, regrettably, it does not seem to have been categorically proven that the PSU, even in the Sheeva, is adequate for long-term use for the purposes that many on the site intend for their Plugs.

The general heating situation with the Sheeva has always been (reported to be) better than the Guru.  In my experience, when doing a large software build (30 minutes of compiling and linking), the plastic case would still get warmer than I was comfortable with.  (Keeping in mind, this is radiant heat from the heat-spreading plate jumping the air gap to the plastic case, so the cpu was running hotter.)

In my opinion, these devices suffer from the same limitation that apply to most consumer goods these days -- they were not designed with long-term use in mind.  (As we all know, in general, the hotter electronic components run, the more likely a failure will occur, sooner.)  Could be planned obsolescence, could be "Make it cheap, and get it out the door."

That all being said, if one can look past the issues like the PSU, the problems with the mini-USB connector or SD card slot on individual units, the main board seems to be adequate.

It may be extreme, but my recommendation for many of these small devices would be 1) select a device with a lower-powers cpu, or 2) expect to replace it, or 3) re-house the board in some other other box, with a decent heat-sink.

My choice was an external PSU and re-housing the board in a metal box, with a (large) heat sink from the plate to the box.  For my purposes, the cost savings (reduced telephone bill) will recoup the costs of the mods in a month or two.  Obviously, others will make their own decisions based upon their needs and wants.
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