New Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+

First of all, just have a look at this new model in the picture below (kindly taken from the raspberrypi.org release article). Looks familiar, isn’t it?

Now, let’s look directly at the hardware and understand what are the main features, the difference from the previous RPi 3 and what benefits the users are going to get, using this new model!

New Features

As mentioned earlier, this is the first company’s 64-bit product. And it seems that RPi 3 B+ has a networking bias due to the connectivity which gained pretty much attention in this new product version. Thus, the main technical peculiarities of this product are:

  • CPU: Cortex-A53 1.4GHz Quad-Core ARM (there are also versions with the processors of 2.4GHz and 5GHz)
  • LAN: Wireless, dual-band 802.11ac
  • Bluetooth 4.2 (also wireless)
  • Ethernet: Gigabit USB 2.0
  • Power-over-Ethernet
  • PXE network and USB mass-storage booting
  • Cooler

It’s worth noting, that CPU has become a little bit faster (+ 200MHz). The product is built upon BCM2837B0 Broadcom processor, which includes power integrity optimizations and a heat spreader. This feature has become especially valuable since the last news, which annonced adopting the Raspberry Pi devices for artificial intelligence (see the article on Electronics Lab).

Speaking about the Dual-band wireless LAN and Bluetooth, they are provided by the Cypress CYW43455 chip, connected to a Proant PCB antenna (just like it was used for Raspberry Pi Zero W). This gives the company an opportunity to certify the board as a radio module, meeting the FCC regulations.

The updated LAN7515 (comparing to LAN951x, used in previous models) supports Gigabit Ethernet now and significantly increases the wired and wireless network throughput.

The implementation of “magjack” now brings the relevant signals to a new 4-pin header. Also, the launch of a new PoE HAT for generating the power from the 48V PoE supply will be shortly announced as well!

Power Efficiency and Cooling

Obviously, due to all the improvements mentioned above, Raspberry Pi 3 B+ increased the level of power consumption. And with that, the hardware has gained better peak and longer-duration sustained performance. To achieve this, the Raspberry Pi engineers improved the power integrity and accuracy of their new MaxLinear MxL7704 power management integrated circuits.

With the temperature accending 70°C the smart thermal management technologies are implemented to decrease the core voltage so that the next 80°C thermal throttle becomes longer reachable in time. With that improvement, Raspberry Pi 3 B+ can run faster at a lower level of temperatures. This is clearly displayed in the graph below (which has been borrowed from the Raspberry Pi Foundation blog post).

And by the way, to cope with the increasing temperatures of a new model, by adding the board its own small cooler, which is quite convenient.

Final notes

The new model of Raspberry Pi, which has been recently released, is not that big technological “jump” from its predecessor, but still offers great features to make RPi 3 B+ worth purchasing. Among them, there are improvements which have been really liked by the community such as better performance, increased Ethernet throughput and smarter thermal management. In addition, all this is for the price of the previous model and it makes the deal even more attractive!

Also, a larger field for doing different projects on RPi appears now and thus, the demand for Raspberry Pi software tends to grow as well. With the new Raspberry Pi features, makers and developers may widen the range of software they use on Raspberry. And ExaGear Desktop can help them to bring the necessary applications to this ARM-based device.

We’ve got a lot of use cases when ExaGear helps to make up a Plex media center or manage music with Spotify on Raspberry Pi. The cases of running Teamspeak and Teamviewer on Raspbian or creating a MetaTrader bot for automatic Forex trading on Raspberry Pi and many others.

Moreover, with ExaGear Desktop, you can run almost any x86 app on any Raspberry Pi models as well as on the new Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+.

 

How to set screen resolution for VNC Server

Here is how you change the screen resolution for VNC Server on a Raspberry Pi.

Go to terminal and type:
sudo nano /boot/config.txt

Find this section of the config.txt file:
# uncomment to force a specific HDMI mode (this will force VGA)
#hdmi_group=2
#hdmi_mode=16

Change to this to set the default resolution to 1280×720:
# uncomment to force a specific HDMI mode (this will force VGA)
#hdmi_group=2
#hdmi_mode=16
hdmi_ignore_edid=0xa5000080
hdmi_group=2
hdmi_mode=85

These values are valid if hdmi_group=2 (DMT):

hdmi_mode resolution frequency notes
1 640×350 85Hz
2 640×400 85Hz
3 720×400 85Hz
4 640×480 60Hz
5 640×480 72Hz
6 640×480 75Hz
7 640×480 85Hz
8 800×600 56Hz
9 800×600 60Hz
10 800×600 72Hz
11 800×600 75Hz
12 800×600 85Hz
13 800×600 120Hz
14 848×480 60Hz
15 1024×768 43Hz incompatible with the Raspberry Pi
16 1024×768 60Hz
17 1024×768 70Hz
18 1024×768 75Hz
19 1024×768 85Hz
20 1024×768 120Hz
21 1152×864 75Hz
22 1280×768 reduced blanking
23 1280×768 60Hz
24 1280×768 75Hz
25 1280×768 85Hz
26 1280×768 120Hz reduced blanking
27 1280×800 reduced blanking
28 1280×800 60Hz
29 1280×800 75Hz
30 1280×800 85Hz
31 1280×800 120Hz reduced blanking
32 1280×960 60Hz
33 1280×960 85Hz
34 1280×960 120Hz reduced blanking
35 1280×1024 60Hz
36 1280×1024 75Hz
37 1280×1024 85Hz
38 1280×1024 120Hz reduced blanking
39 1360×768 60Hz
40 1360×768 120Hz reduced blanking
41 1400×1050 reduced blanking
42 1400×1050 60Hz
43 1400×1050 75Hz
44 1400×1050 85Hz
45 1400×1050 120Hz reduced blanking
46 1440×900 reduced blanking
47 1440×900 60Hz
48 1440×900 75Hz
49 1440×900 85Hz
50 1440×900 120Hz reduced blanking
51 1600×1200 60Hz
52 1600×1200 65Hz
53 1600×1200 70Hz
54 1600×1200 75Hz
55 1600×1200 85Hz
56 1600×1200 120Hz reduced blanking
57 1680×1050 reduced blanking
58 1680×1050 60Hz
59 1680×1050 75Hz
60 1680×1050 85Hz
61 1680×1050 120Hz reduced blanking
62 1792×1344 60Hz
63 1792×1344 75Hz
64 1792×1344 120Hz reduced blanking
65 1856×1392 60Hz
66 1856×1392 75Hz
67 1856×1392 120Hz reduced blanking
68 1920×1200 reduced blanking
69 1920×1200 60Hz
70 1920×1200 75Hz
71 1920×1200 85Hz
72 1920×1200 120Hz reduced blanking
73 1920×1440 60Hz
74 1920×1440 75Hz
75 1920×1440 120Hz reduced blanking
76 2560×1600 reduced blanking
77 2560×1600 60Hz
78 2560×1600 75Hz
79 2560×1600 85Hz
80 2560×1600 120Hz reduced blanking
81 1366×768 60Hz
82 1920×1080 60Hz 1080p
83 1600×900 reduced blanking
84 2048×1152 reduced blanking
85 1280×720 60Hz 720p
86 1366×768 reduced blanking

How to clean up Ubuntu /boot partition

After time your Ubuntu /boot partition can fill up with multiple kernel versions. To clean up unused kernel’s use the following steps.

Command line method:

First check your kernel version, so you won’t delete the in-use kernel image, running:

uname -r

Now run this command for a list of installed kernels:

dpkg –list ‘linux-image*’ | grep ^ii

and delete the kernels you don’t want/need anymore by running this:

sudo apt-get remove linux-image-VERSION

Replace VERSION with the version of the kernel you want to remove.

When you’re done removing the older kernels, you can run this to remove ever packages you won’t need anymore:

sudo apt-get autoremove

And finally you can run this to update grub kernel list:

sudo update-grub

Root File Browser for Raspbian Jessie

I am often asked how to run the file browser with root privileges on a Raspberry Pi, here are the instructions.

Typing gksudo in Terminal and then hitting enter. A window named Run program will pop up.

Then typing pcmanfm on the Run text field. Pressing ok. Always use caution when running the file brower with root privileges, you can easily break your system if you don’t know what you are doing.

Astral Projection Goggles

DSP is proud to announce our new Astral Projection Goggles. Included in the kit is a VR Shinecon Directg-VR goggles, a BLU Android phone (for playing program audio/video) and a 32GB micro SD card. The video files included induce self hypnotic vibrational states for deep relaxation, lucid dreaming and out-of-body travel (OBE). As new programs are developed purchasers of the kit will receive the updates free of charge. Visit the DSP store to purchase this kit.

Falling asleep physically without losing awareness. The “Mind Awake, Body Asleep” state is widely suggested as a cause of OBEs and lucid dreaming, voluntary and otherwise. Thomas Edison used this state to tackle problems while working on his inventions. He would rest a silver dollar on his head while sitting with a metal bucket in a chair. As he drifted off, the coin would noisily fall into the bucket, restoring some of his alertness.  Salvador Dalí was said to use a similar “paranoiac-critical” method to gain odd visions which inspired his paintings. Deliberately teetering between awake and asleep states is known to cause spontaneous trance episodes at the onset of sleep which are ultimately helpful when attempting to induce an OBE. By moving deeper and deeper into relaxation, one eventually encounters a “slipping” feeling if the mind is still alert. This slipping is reported to feel like leaving the physical body.  Some consider progressive relaxation a passive form of sensory deprivation. Deep trance, meditation and visualization. The types of visualizations vary; some common analogies include climbing a rope to “pull out” of one’s body, floating out of one’s body, getting shot out of a cannon, and other similar approaches. This technique is considered hard to use for people who cannot properly relax. DSP’s Astral Projection Googles and programs makes it easy for anyone to enter these states without much practice and delivers a state of relaxation that most people never experience.

 

 

Edward Snowden made an app to protect your stuff

Haven is an app that does just that. Installed on a cheap burner Android device, Haven sends notifications to your  main phone in the event that your laptop has been tampered with. If you leave your laptop at home or at an office or in a hotel room, you can place your Haven phone on top of the laptop, and when Haven detects motion, light, sound or movement — essentially, anything that might be someone messing with your stuff — it logs what happened. It takes photos, records sound, even takes down changes in light or acceleration, and then sends notifications to your main phone. None of this logging is stored in the cloud, and the notifications you receive on your main phone are end-to-end encrypted over Signal.

I have been testing the beta version of Haven over the past several days and it works as advertised! I installed it on my Android burner and it sent alerts for both movement and sensing audio to my iPhone.  It will even let you to  access the app remotely using a Onion service address from Orbot. If you are concerned about security like I am download Haven today from Google’s Play Store. For more information on Haven visit http://havenapp.org.

Encrypt files in Dropbox Folder

Putting sensitive files on a cloud drive like Dropbox can be dangerous no matter how secure they claim their systems are. The basic fact is that any system can be hacked, it happens every day. If you are using Dropbox to backup and share critical files like I am the first thing you want to do is to setup two factor authentication. In Dropbox the 2nd factor authentication sends a six digit access code in the form of a text message to your mobile phone. While this extends your security it alone will not totally protect your files. In this article I will take you step by step in setting up a encrypted Dropbox folder using EncFS and Ubuntu. 

Step 1:

Install EncFS in Ubuntu

sudo apt-get install encfs

install gnome-encfs-manager

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gencfsm/ppa

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install gnome-encfs-manager

Step 2:

Create a directory inside your Dropbox folder. For this example I created a folder called crypt.

Start gnome-encfs-manager and set up a new stash by clicking the + sign.

Set the directory to encrypt to a folder inside your Dropbox folder.

Set the mount directory wherever you want, the default is fine just don't put it in your Dropbox folder. 


E
nter a strong password with at least 20 characters and click "Create".


Edit the new stash by selecting "Stash" and then "Configure" from the menu and check "Mount on Startup" and "Save Password in keyring" to save the password in the gnome keyring.

        
You should now have your encrypted drive mounted, it will be displayed like a mounted usb-drive.

 

Importing the drive on other computers:

1. Wait for all files to sync on Dropbox.
2. Start gnome-encfs-manager and set up a new stash.
3. encfs-manager will detect the drive and import it.
4.  Set the mount directory wherever you want (default is fine) and click "Import"
5. Edit the new stash as described above.
6. You will be asked for your password on first mount.

Hagelin BC-52 Simulator

This software is an accurate simulation of the Hagelin BC-52, one of the most famous Cold War era crypto machines. After the success of the C-38 and M-209 as tactical cipher devices, Hagelin developed a cipher machine for high level military and diplomatic encryption. In 1952 Hagelin Cryptos (Crypto AG) introduced the C-52 and, as Devours and Kruh wrote, ’caused ripples throughout the cryptanalytic community’. The C-52 raised the security of pin-and-lug devices to another level. The machine had 6 irregular moving pinwheels, selected from a set of 12, and the number of drum bars was extended to 32, of which 5 where also used to advance the wheels. When lugs and pins are selected carefully the C-52 provides even in this computer era a powerful encryption. The combination of C-52 and the keyboard, denoted B-52, was named BC-52. Within short time the BC-52 was purchased by more than 60 countries and remains popular until today.

This very realistic Hagelin BC-52 Cipher Machine Simulator enables you to encipher and decipher messages, and apply the key settings as you would with an actual machine. You can select between the C-52 and CX-52 model, and customize the machine in various ways. There’s also a formatted clipboard and an Autotyping function. The program includes a detailed help file containing the enciphering procedures, how to set the machine and all technical details .

Runs on Windows™ 98/ME/2000/XP/Vista/Win7/Win 8 and on MAC with CrossOver, Parallels Desktop or WINE (open source).

Download BC-52 Simulator

For more detailed information on the BC-52 and other encryption machines visit the Cipher Machines and Cryptology page.

HTTPS Everywhere

A essential security add-on for your web browser is HTTPS Everywhere, if you don’t have it installed I recommend that you do so.  To easily install it go to https://www.eff.org/https-everywhere and simply choose the browser(s) you are using and click the appropriate icon. You can also install from the add-ons menu in you browser settings  and search for HTTPS Everywhere.

HTTPS Everywhere is a Firefox, Chrome, and Opera extension that encrypts your communications with many major websites, making your browsing more secure. Encrypt the web: Install HTTPS Everywhere today.

HTTPS Everywhere is produced as a collaboration between The Tor Project and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Many sites on the web offer some limited support for encryption over HTTPS, but make it difficult to use. For instance, they may default to unencrypted HTTP, or fill encrypted pages with links that go back to the unencrypted site. The HTTPS Everywhere extension fixes these problems by using clever technology to rewrite requests to these sites to HTTPS.

Ardour Digital Audio Workstation

I recently switched my video editing software from Windows based Sony Vegas to Linux based Blender.  I had also used Vegas as my digital audio workstation for audio projects. Wanting to do both on Linux I started researching Linux based DAW systems and found Ardour. After testing Ardour I quickly realized that I found my solution.  Ardour was very intuitive to learn and had all of the features that I required for my audio mixing projects. Good news for you OSx and Windows user, there are versions available for both of you. Linux VST support provides access to high quality proprietary plugins on Linux from Loomer, Pianoteq/Modartt. Excellent open source plugins from Distrho and others.   It’s also a free under GNU Public License v2  but if you end up using do as I do and make a donation to help keep the project going.

Ardour is a multichannel hard disk recorder (HDR) and digital audio workstation (DAW). It can be used to control, record, edit and run complex audio setups.

Ardour supports pro-audio interfaces through the ALSA project, which provides high quality, well designed device drivers and API’s for audio I/O under Linux. Any interface supported by ALSA can be used with Ardour. This includes the all-digital 26 channel RME Hammerfall, the Midiman Delta 1010 and many others.

Ardour has support for 24 bit samples using floating point internally, non-linear editing with unlimited undo, a user-configurable mixer, MTC master/slave capabilities, MIDI hardware control surface compatibility.

It supports MIDI Machine Control, and so can be controlled from any MMC controller and many modern digital mixers.

Ardour contains a powerful multitrack audio editor/arranger that is completely non-destructive and capable of all standard non-linear editing operations (insert, replace, delete, move, trim, select, cut/copy/paste). The editor has unlimited undo/redo capabilities and can save independent “versions” of a track or an entire piece.

Ardour’s editor supports the community-developed LADSPA plugin standard. Arbitrary chains of plugins can be attached to any portion of a track. Every mixer strip can have any number of inputs and outputs, not just mono, stereo or 5.1. An N-way panner is included, with support for various panning models. Pre- and post-fader sends exist, each with their own gain and pan controls. Every mixer strip acts as its own bus, and thus the bus count in Ardour is unlimited. You can submix any number of strips into another strip.

Ardour’s channel capacity is limited only by the number on your audio interface and the ability of your disk subsystem to stream the data back and forth.

JACK (the JACK Audio Connection Kit) is used for all audio I/O, permitting data to be exchanged in perfect samplesync with other applications and/or hardware audio interfaces.

Ardour is sample rate and size neutral – any hardware formats from 8 to 32 bits, and rates from 8kHz to 192kHz. Internal processing in 32/64 bit IEEE floating point format.

Further information can be found at http://ardour.org/.