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Defective PICO (warranty?)
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Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.

Defective PICO (warranty?)

by archaic0 on Thu Jul 07, 2022 1:19 am

I purchased several Raspberry Pi PICOs from adafruit two weeks ago and one of them seems to have defective storage. I've been using Thonny to interact with all of the devices and today when I plugged this one in, it is missing data and showing question marks for several things. I've been running CircuitPython, but I tried re-loading MicroPython and then CircuitPython again (by dragging the UF2 file over in bootloader mode), but it still appears corrupt. Here is an example of what I see when trying a listdir command:

>>> os.listdir()
['.fseventsd', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', '?', 'boot_out.txt', 'System Volume Information']
>>>

How do I get this item replaced or is there something I can do to reset it to factory or similar?

Thank you in advance!

archaic0
 
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Re: Defective PICO (warranty?)

by archaic0 on Thu Jul 07, 2022 1:31 am

Wouldn't you know it, after an hour of google searching for question mark files and corrupted pi pico and finding nothing, directly after posting this I did one more search for "dead pi pico" and found my way to page that mentioned the flash_nuke.uf2 file. Searching for that dropped me back here at adafruit where I started and this fixed my pico!

https://learn.adafruit.com/getting-star ... cuitpython

Funny thing is that I started out on that page 2 weeks ago to get things working in the first place, but didn't need the nuke at that time so that part wasn't on my radar.

Live and learn I guess, moving on...

Now we'll see if this PICO goes corrupt again. I have 10 of them running the same code for 24 hour stints and none of the others corrupted like this one did so I don't know what caused it. Could it still be defective? or is corrupt flash that needs to be nuked sort of 'normal' in this world? (I'm new here, please be gentle)

archaic0
 
Posts: 17
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Re: Defective PICO (warranty?)

by freddyboomboom on Thu Jul 07, 2022 1:31 am

https://www.raspberrypi.com/documentation/microcontrollers/raspberry-pi-pico.html

Scroll down until you see the section on "Resetting Flash Memory"

OR you can go here https://learn.adafruit.com/getting-started-with-raspberry-pi-pico-circuitpython/circuitpython and use the flash_nuke.uf2 file.

Either should work.

Since you have 'System Volume Information' on it I'd say it accidentally got set to read/write on a Windows system, then was probably not unmounted cleanly.

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Re: Defective PICO (warranty?)

by archaic0 on Fri Jul 15, 2022 7:50 pm

So far, none of my PICOs or ESP32s that I've been playing with have corrupted, but I suspect the corruption was because I'm running on batteries and run them all the way down. Because I boot them all with a writable file system (so I can write a log file), I'm betting that when I plugged a PICO into my PC directly after it running out of power mid-write, this may have produced the perfect storm where my Windows PC decided to write to the flash in a way that was not intended. Thus, the System Volume Information folder that I found.

If I run a PICO like that in the future, I think I'll try to power it from a power brick at least once, or put fresh batteries in it, before I try to plug it into a PC. Maybe that will close the file system enough or put the PICO in a state where the PC will not write to the flash like it did.

Just guesses of course. Thanks for the input!

archaic0
 
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Re: Defective PICO (warranty?)

by mikeysklar on Mon Jul 18, 2022 5:17 pm

I've corrupted CircuitPython filesystems by plugging an unplugging devices at high frequency (probably as writes were happening).

It might make sense you set your drive to read-only in the boot.py config file to reduce the risk of computer versus CircuitPython running on the device causing corruption issues.

The storage.remount() command has a readonly keyword argument. This argument refers to the read/write state of CircuitPython. It does NOT refer to the read/write state of your computer.

When the physical pin is connected to ground, it returns False. The readonly argument in boot.py is set to the value of the pin. When the value=True, the CIRCUITPY drive is read-only to CircuitPython (and writable by your computer). When the value=False, the CIRCUITPY drive is writable by CircuitPython (an read-only by your computer).


https://learn.adafruit.com/circuitpytho ... on-storage

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Re: Defective PICO (warranty?)

by archaic0 on Mon Jul 18, 2022 9:53 pm

I was writing a log file to the PICO flash to download data from a temperature sensor at a later time. I needed the file system to be writable to do that.

For this project I have now moved on to the ESP32-S3 with WiFi so I can just post my data directly to a database and not have to collect the data manually.

I was trying to get this done for as little money as possible, so the PICO at $4 was very appealing, but in the end it turns out it's more hassle than it's worth to save a few bucks and the $12 ESP32-S3 was the better way to go anyway. If the PICO-W was out and available, that would have been the more perfect solution probably, although the QUIK/STEMMA connectors on the ESP board are pretty nice too.

The only thing I miss from the PICO is the VSYS voltage monitoring because I was using Alkaline AA batteries and I could use the VSYS voltage as a quick and easy estimation of run time left. I am now running each sensor package from a cell phone power bank though (10,000mah) so that issue is largely gone with such a long run time and the input voltage wouldn't tell me anything about the battery anymore.

archaic0
 
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Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.