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Month: March 2017

PCB Fabrication

PCB Fabrication

When creating PCBs, the quality of the work is the most important element. If the design has a flaw, the work can lead to malfunction, damage, or worse depending on the application. Quality is key. It’s good practice to keep that in mind regardless if the design is complex or rudimentary. I’ve found that component placement on the board to be a good first step. It allows you to know that parts will fit and connect with the outside world…

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PCB Design

PCB Design

One challenge with piecing together devices are the connections. We discussed how we’ll use communications protocols to link devices that are physically separate. This same problem occurs for our nodes that have sensors, controllers, or other circuit boards that need to be linked. To solve this, we’ll develop and manufacture printed circuit boards, or PCBs as they are commonly referred to. Having a custom PCB that makes the links also provides us a cleaner build. In addition, devices can be…

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Cacti and Custom Data Source Monitoring Part 2 of 2

Cacti and Custom Data Source Monitoring Part 2 of 2

Custom Data Sources Now that Cacti is up and running, let’s get some data from data sources that typically aren’t covered. The Raspberry Pi is unique in the sense that CPU temperature can be monitored using a program called vcgencmd. Great thing about this program is it’s already installed. Run the following command from the terminal. You should get a reading back along the lines of “temp=42.0’C”. If you do, great. We’re going to need to create a script that…

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Cacti and Custom Data Source Monitoring Part 1 of 2

Cacti and Custom Data Source Monitoring Part 1 of 2

Introduction and Background I had posted about Cacti and setting up graphing from unorthodox data sources before. When I stepped back through those documented steps, I didn’t get the expected results. The inaccurate and vague information on that post prompted me to take a hard top to bottom look at the process. For anyone that had viewed that post and become confused by it, I do apologize. I dedicate this post to you as a humble attempt to right my…

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