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Author Topic: Does the Almond need a UPS  (Read 21601 times)

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Offline dsmiley

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Does the Almond need a UPS
« on: September 16, 2013, 05:36:20 am »
We have occasional short power outages in our area that just last a moment or two.  Does the Almond come back on with its previous settings after such an event or does it need a UPS to prevent losing its power?  Thanks.

Offline eldaria

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2013, 04:54:00 pm »
Actually under such circumstances I would recommend a UPS with Built in filter in any case.
If the power is unstable like this, usually the power is also "unclean" with spikes and power drops.
This can be unhealthy for electronics, so having a UPS gives you a more regular power.

I bought a not too expensive UPS from CyberPower, and all my electronics is connected through it, some are only on the Filter, other also have battery backup, like the HTPC, Computer, Router, SIP adapter, Network Switch, External Harddrives, Night lights and TimeCapsule. On the Filter I connected the rest, TV, Consoles, HIFI.

This way should the power fail, I can still use the phone, (Assuming the internet still works to my house), keep the computer running long enough (~45 minutes) to shut down safely, and be able to see since I also have some lights connected.  And all equipment is filtered against spikes and other noise on the electric line.


Offline dsmiley

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2013, 05:43:46 pm »
I still would like to know the answer to the first part of my question, "Does the Almond come back on with its previous settings after such an event..."

Thanks.


LGNilsson

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2013, 10:49:27 pm »
Yes, the Almond would come back on in such an event and as all the settings are saved in flash memory, there's no need to worry about it being reset.

Offline dsmiley

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2013, 09:00:58 am »
Thanks for the help.  I'm placing my order today.

Offline Pestus

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2014, 01:35:32 am »
The larger your home automation network will be, the more a UPS is helpful anyways.  Keeps the heart of the home beating, which can influence a myriad of devices.  I'd do it anyways, if you'll be running security, climate control, or similar through it.

Offline Patrick Wilson

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #6 on: February 12, 2014, 12:52:34 am »
The larger your home automation network will be, the more a UPS is helpful anyways.  Keeps the heart of the home beating, which can influence a myriad of devices.  I'd do it anyways, if you'll be running security, climate control, or similar through it.

I'm with you on this issue.  My Router,  Modem,  and NAS (Network Attached Storage) device are all connected to a 1200VA UPS.  I celebrate "Power Outages" here,  by watching Movies from my NAS on my Laptop.   

My Girlfriend is techo-savvy enough to understand that Laptops continue to run during Power outages,  but it took her a year to notice that the Router and the NAS are still operational during Power Outages.  (She'll get really confused when my Almond+ gets here,  as I will add a low-wattage LED Lamp to my UPS once I can control it via my Android phone). 
« Last Edit: February 13, 2014, 08:34:18 pm by Patrick Wilson »
Patrick Wilson
Victoria, BC Canada

Offline Pestus

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #7 on: February 12, 2014, 08:22:20 am »
Yeah, I've got a Synology 4 bay for the sake of my business.  It's also our media server.  Fantastic stuff.  I had considered going x86 and running FreeNAS, but I was in a hurry when I bought this piece.  I don't regret it.  My UPS is an APC 1000VA model and I love how it works with the NAS.  Through the USB port, the NAS can monitor the battery level, and park it's hard drives right before powering itself down when the batteries go low.  This prevents an unlikely disk error, and prevents a full discharge on the batteries, protecting them too.  I also get email notifications when my power goes out, which can be very handy.

LGNilsson

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #8 on: February 12, 2014, 08:23:44 am »
If you considered FreeNAS, have a look at OpenMediaVault instead, much nicer imho.

Which Synology do you have? We got an Atom based on in the office for backup etc.

Never really used a UPS though, but then again, I've never lived anywhere where brownouts/blackouts are common.

Offline Pestus

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2014, 08:34:29 am »
Mine is a Synology 411+.   It's unfortunately just a little too weak to support transcoding, but it does DLNA really well despite this.  I ended up getting a WD Live TV media player as it could handle some of the rich MKV files on it's own.  (My PS3 couldn't handle some files without transcoding)  On a side note, the WD Live TV media player is very easy to integrate into a HA design, if anyone wants that info.

We use the Synology cloud software to do our own in house 'dropbox' style set up on our work computers.  That feature alone is worth getting a NAS of some kind.

OpenMediaVault you say.  I have a friend who wants to build his own, I think I'll offer up that suggestion to him.

I've used UPS systems extensively over many years.  The added benefit of these is less dying parts when they age.  I'm of the opinion that most consumer electronics die due to electrostatic damage.  A power spike can damage it, and you see no symptoms for years, when it decided to just stop working, or it gets senile.  If your UPS is good enough to convert it's power output sign wave to a stepped output, it can extend the life of anything behind it.  At least in theory.

LGNilsson

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #10 on: February 12, 2014, 10:08:08 am »
Yeah, none of the Atom powered NAS:es will do transcoding properly, although Intel claims that some of the latest CE5300-series of Atom chips should be able to do to real time transcoding, although I highly doubt it.

What are you using the WD Live for in a HA setup?

Not really tried that one out in the office yet, but it looks ok.

Yeah, they have a VM you can test first, that way you can see if you like it or not.

I've got surge protectors, they should hopefully protect my gear against that, then again, I never have any really old stuff, as I keep upgrading and pass on the old bits to someone else  :P

Offline Pestus

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2014, 06:13:04 pm »
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Yeah, none of the Atom powered NAS:es will do transcoding properly, although Intel claims that some of the latest CE5300-series of Atom chips should be able to do to real time transcoding, although I highly doubt it.

Oh I see.  So it's probably a CISC vs RISC thing.  You probably need a complex pipeline to handle the issue.  I remember back in the day, ripping DVDs took some significant processor demand.

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What are you using the WD Live for in a HA setup?

Since I couldn't do transcoding for my old PS3, I needed something.  My father had one of these kicking around, so I put that in my LAN.  It's a bit underpowered, but it's very stable.  It has proper IR pronto codes, and a full suite of IP commands for all it's functions.   So, I added a Global Caché IP2IR for control.  This is basically a network box that acts as a universal remote control.  So I have IR outs that have stickies and are stuck to the IR ins of the WD box, and my TV.  I run iRule as a remote control on my phone and tablet to control them. 

I also have an Ouya with an android XBMC client that I can also use.  XBMC is a good avenue for you folks, for A/V integration by the way.  Cross platform, open source, and entirely controllable via HTTP post commands.  Well documented and exhaustive API here.  Not only does it work well with iRule, but I've got it talking to my Vera, sending me notifications on the top of my screen when my girlfriend comes home, and the like.  Hitting pause on XBMC will turn on my living room light, for another example.

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Not really tried that one out in the office yet, but it looks ok.

I swear by the cloudstation software.  It's highly convenient.

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Yeah, they have a VM you can test first, that way you can see if you like it or not.

Good to know, I'll recommend my buddy try this before he builds his box.

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I've got surge protectors, they should hopefully protect my gear against that, then again, I never have any really old stuff, as I keep upgrading and pass on the old bits to someone else  :P

Yes they should!

LGNilsson

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2014, 09:20:29 pm »
It's not a CISC vs. RISC thing, Atom processors are really, really basic x86 (CISC) parts and aren't very good at handling things like video encoding/transcoding.

Interesting use of the WD box, I'm curious if it could be made to work with AC units.

Did you get your Ouya via Kickstarter? Been reading some of the feedback and it's not very positive. Nice interaction with XBMC though. Some more recent NAS models from QNAP and Asustor supports XMBC and have HDMI output, maybe your next upgrade  ;)

Offline Pestus

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2014, 11:25:20 pm »
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It's not a CISC vs. RISC thing, Atom processors are really, really basic x86 (CISC) parts and aren't very good at handling things like video encoding/transcoding.

Orlly!  Isn't that interesting.  ARM processors are RISC though right?  Maybe I need to go back to school :)

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Interesting use of the WD box, I'm curious if it could be made to work with AC units.

AC?  Please define.

Quote
Did you get your Ouya via Kickstarter? Been reading some of the feedback and it's not very positive. Nice interaction with XBMC though. Some more recent NAS models from QNAP and Asustor supports XMBC and have HDMI output, maybe your next upgrade  ;)

I did indeed.  It's basic interface blows, but it does achieve what it's meant to do.  Some of the games are fun, but I haven't had time to explore most of it.  I really think it shines as perhaps the best emulator I've ever seen.  The controller is adequate, and for $100 I wouldn't complain.  It doesn't have Google Play integration, however.

If you put Nova Launcher, and use something like AirDroid to sideload APKs, you can do very interesting things.  It's got a Tegra3 processor, which is a hefty ARM processor more commonly seen in tablets.  In a sense, it makes a better media player than most of the god awful Android media players out there, because unlike most, it's got enough flops to pull off high quality with no skipping.  Netflix is annoying as it's a matter of finding the right client to sideload, but XBMC works better on this than it does on my windows gaming PC somehow.

I've seen QNAP's NAS with the HDMI out.  I am very impressed with what they did.  It's fantastically powerful, with diverse software offerings.  The thing is, I treat NAS systems as a bit of a utility.  It usually sits in the basement with the UPS, the LAN hardware, and the like.  Having to locate the QNAP at the TV can defeat some of the advantages.   I did do one odd job for someone once, where I used Monoprice dongles to bridge 2 Cat6 lines to HDMI at either end.  I suppose I could do that in this situation as well if someone wanted to use their NAS this way.  I benefit from being in a country where everyone has a basement :)

LGNilsson

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Re: Does the Almond need a UPS
« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2014, 01:03:59 am »
The Synology DS411+ has an Atom D510 processor, not an ARM based processor. See http://forum.synology.com/wiki/index.php/What_kind_of_CPU_does_my_NAS_have for details.
ARM processors are indeed RISC based, but ARM processors are usually a System on a Chip (SoC) and they tend to have dedicated video decoder/encoder/transcoder offload engines that deals with video related tasks. If they lack these, they can usually not be used for any kind of video related processing, as they're simply too under powered to handle video related tasks.
This is what Intel has done with some of the Atom CE5300 parts as well, as this frees up the Atom cores to do other tasks. It seems to be the Atom CE5335 as far as NAS devices are concerned, but it does require some additional drivers and software to be able to do the video transcoding on the fly.

Sorry, I wasn't clear here, Air Conditioning units. The ones sold in Asia at least, in general come with an IR remote that's used to control the temperature.

The Tegra 3 isn't a bad chip, but I don't think it's enough for a "console" that's supposed to play games on a 1080p display.

QNAP has a lot of different models, some of them are more suitable than others for media playback, I'd steer clear of the Atom D2xx0 models for that stuff, as the drivers are bad. The Celeron and Core i models are fine though, but not cheap. Patrick has a Core i3 model that's apparently quite a capable media player.

HDMI over Ethernet is pretty interesting, how well does it work? I meant to install something like that for a mate, but we couldn't get hold of the hardware easily locally at that point in time, so it was never done. 

 

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