Topton Jasper Lake Quad i225V Mini PC Report

ptselios

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Aug 16, 2022
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I want to upgrade my home router with one of those devices. I don't plan to use pfsense (at least at the beginning), the plan for me is to stick with RHEL or Fedora as the OS.
My questions are mainly about the HW. What I would like to have is a Wifi and LTE/4G modem installed internally. I understand that most of the devices have one mini-pcie on which you can install the LTE modem. But how do you add the WiFi card then? Are there any devices with 2 mini-pcie or do I install the wifi card on the nvme port?
 

pigr8

New Member
Jul 13, 2017
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The key ones seem to be from mine:

Enable PL1 and set at 10000
Enable PL2 and set at 12000
Enable C-states
Enable acoustic noise reduction
Set PECI to off
Enable turbo (it’s fine once you’ve got proper settings)
Enable Speedstep
Set ACPI as auto

Then if you’re using pfSense, and I assume OPNSense, that use FreeBSD you will need a few tunables and a loader.conf.local file

Tunables:

Code:
hw.acpi.cpu.cx_lowest=C3
dev.cpu.0.cx_lowest=C3
dev.cpu.1.cx_lowest=C3
dev.cpu.2.cx_lowest=C3
dev.cpu.3.cx_lowest=C3
System, Advanced, Misc

Turn on PowerD, and set to Adaptive to start off for all states.

Create/edit a /boot/loader.conf.local file

Add the following

Code:
machdep.hwpstate_pkg_ctrl=0
Reboot, then go to the console again and type in

Code:
sysctl dev.cpu.0
You should see output like

Code:
dev.cpu.0.cx_method: C1/mwait/hwc C2/mwait/hwc C3/mwait/hwc
dev.cpu.0.cx_usage_counters: 14779023 15122084 1
dev.cpu.0.cx_usage: 49.42% 50.57% 0.00% last 254us
dev.cpu.0.cx_lowest: C3
dev.cpu.0.cx_supported: C1/1/1 C2/2/253 C3/3/1048
dev.cpu.0.freq_levels: 2001/10000 2000/10000 1900/9392 1800/8795 1700/8211 1600/7639 1500/7078 1400/6530 1300/5992 1200/5466 1100/4951 1000/4447 900/3955 800/3473
dev.cpu.0.freq: 800
dev.cpu.0.temperature: 39.0C
dev.cpu.0.coretemp.throttle_log: 0
dev.cpu.0.coretemp.tjmax: 105.0C
dev.cpu.0.coretemp.resolution: 1
dev.cpu.0.coretemp.delta: 66
dev.cpu.0.%parent: acpi0
dev.cpu.0.%pnpinfo: _HID=none _UID=0 _CID=none
dev.cpu.0.%location: handle=\_SB_.PR00
dev.cpu.0.%driver: cpu
dev.cpu.0.%desc: ACPI CPU
You can see with that and the repasting etc, it’s happily sitting at 39C.
thanks for the tips, now it's usable

Code:
[2.6.0-RELEASE][root@pfSense.local]/root: sysctl dev.cpu.0
dev.cpu.0.temperature: 38.0C
dev.cpu.0.coretemp.throttle_log: 0
dev.cpu.0.coretemp.tjmax: 105.0C
dev.cpu.0.coretemp.resolution: 1
dev.cpu.0.coretemp.delta: 67
dev.cpu.0.cx_method: C1/mwait/hwc C2/mwait/hwc C3/mwait/hwc
dev.cpu.0.cx_usage_counters: 17745 0 0
dev.cpu.0.cx_usage: 100.00% 0.00% 0.00% last 41556us
dev.cpu.0.cx_lowest: C1
dev.cpu.0.cx_supported: C1/1/1 C2/2/253 C3/3/1048
dev.cpu.0.freq_levels: 2001/10000 2000/10000 1900/9392 1800/8795 1700/8211 1600/7639 1500/7078 1400/6530 1300/5992 1200/5466 1100/4951 1000/4447 900/3955 800/3473
dev.cpu.0.freq: 800
dev.cpu.0.%parent: acpi0
dev.cpu.0.%pnpinfo: _HID=none _UID=0 _CID=none
dev.cpu.0.%location: handle=\_SB_.PR00
dev.cpu.0.%driver: cpu
dev.cpu.0.%desc: ACPI CPU
 
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pigr8

New Member
Jul 13, 2017
29
22
3
I want to upgrade my home router with one of those devices. I don't plan to use pfsense (at least at the beginning), the plan for me is to stick with RHEL or Fedora as the OS.
My questions are mainly about the HW. What I would like to have is a Wifi and LTE/4G modem installed internally. I understand that most of the devices have one mini-pcie on which you can install the LTE modem. But how do you add the WiFi card then? Are there any devices with 2 mini-pcie or do I install the wifi card on the nvme port?
get a m.2 key-m to key-a+b and you can install the wifi module there, leaving the mini-pcie to the lte modem.
 

Snk B

Member
Jul 19, 2022
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I'm reading this thread with interest because I bought a WooYi N5105 unit: 135.34US $ 45% OFF|Intel Celeron N5105/n5095 Soft Router Fanless Mini Pc 4x Intel I225 2.5g Lan Hdmi Dp Pfsense Firewall Appliance Esxi Aes-ni - Barebone & Mini Pc - AliExpress

I've had no end of issues running Proxmox on this box with VMs (pfSense and Ubuntu) freezing randomly anywhere from hours to days. I've been a heavy participant on the Proxmox forums, in particular, this thread: Help Troubleshooting Frozen/Crashed VMs

I've also filed kernel panic bug reports at Proxmox (216349 – Kernel panic in a Ubuntu VM running on Proxmox) and kernel.org (216349 – Kernel panic in a Ubuntu VM running on Proxmox) and supplied detailed kernel panic debugging info from the VM (using netconsole for Ubuntu and remote syslog server for pfSense). Often times, there was nothing logged to file on the VMs and sometimes nothing logged to the console either so I had to put the kernels in debug mode and run remote logs.

I've read the first 3-4 pages of this thread (very surprising information) but I'm going to have a thorough read through the rest of this thread because it appears as though there's quite a lot of people having major issues with these 'firewall' NUCs. There's a bunch of people in the Proxmox forums who've also reported issues with the N5105 CPU and are running variations of these NUCs.

The Proxmox settings posted above made no difference for me (tried q35 machine type and passing host CPU details to VM) but my VMs still froze.

While I was troubleshooting, I also found out that the NVMe drive shipped with my box had a bunch of bad sectors:

Code:
kernel: [  526.807304] blk_update_request: critical medium error, dev nvme0n1, sector 180341632 op 0x0:(READ) flags 0x0 phys_seg 9 prio class 0
[  162.883369] blk_update_request: critical medium error, dev nvme0n1, sector 180341632 op 0x0:(READ) flags 0x0 phys_seg 12 prio class 0
[  526.807304] blk_update_request: critical medium error, dev nvme0n1, sector 180341632 op 0x0:(READ) flags 0x0 phys_seg 9 prio class 0
Code:
root@pve:~# badblocks -sv /dev/nvme0n1
Checking blocks 0 to 125034839
Checking for bad blocks (read-only test): 82947180done, 3:06 elapsed. (0/0/0 errors)
82947181
82947182
82947183
90170892done, 3:28 elapsed. (4/0/0 errors)
90170893
90170894
90170895
done                                               
Pass completed, 8 bad blocks found. (8/0/0 errors)
Replacing the NVMe with a known good one didn't solve the freezing. Interestingly, the dodgy NVMe shipped with the NUC also didn't conform with SMART specifications and I couldn't run any diagnostic tests using smartctl - probably by design to stop people from discovering that these are dodgy drives.

I also replaced the thermal paste on the CPU with arctic silver and changed Proxmox's CPU governer from its default 'performance' to 'powersave' has got my CPU temps down to a solid 40C. Changing the thermal paste alone has probably reduced the temperature by around 20-40C under load.

I've moved my VMs across to VMware ESXi in an effort to try and try something different and to potentially isolate the issue further from Proxmox.

Has anyone who's received an N5105, tested to see if they are installing pre-production Intel CPUs into these N5105 NUCs too (suspicion based on earlier posts in this thread regarding the N6005)? Are there any BIOS updates available for the WooYi units?
Hey man
I also had problems with my linux VM crashing.
Apparently my pfSense is still working fine (49h uptime)
How did you manage to set a new scheduler in proxmox? Running my linux VM, the cores are always at the maximum frequency and this ends up causing an unusual heat generation.
 

gyrex

New Member
Aug 4, 2022
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Hey man
I also had problems with my linux VM crashing.
Apparently my pfSense is still working fine (49h uptime)
How did you manage to set a new scheduler in proxmox? Running my linux VM, the cores are always at the maximum frequency and this ends up causing an unusual heat generation.
My pfSense VM ran for a week or more without freezing but then inevitably froze up. My Ubuntu VM running Docker tended to freeze more often. I've documented these issues with some verbosity over at the Proxmox forums if you'd like to have a look. Also feel free to check out the bugzilla reports on Proxmox and kernel.org.

No freezes since moving to ESXi (yet) - will keep everyone posted on stability. I've also removed the NVMe drive and installed a Crucial MX500 SATA SSD so I'm not sure if that could be an improvement on stability. If ESXi runs for a week or so without any of the VMs freezing up, I might try running Proxmox again with the SATA SSD although I really feel as though there's an issue with the kernel and the N5105 given how many people are experiencing the same issue on different hardware configurations.

To change the CPU governor on the Proxmox host:

apt -y install cpufrequtils

Change to powersave immediately:
echo "powersave" | tee /sys/devices/system/cpu/cpu*/cpufreq/scaling_governor

Check that the powersave governor has been enabled by running cpufreq-info

Permanent change on reboot
crontab -e

Add:
@reboot echo "powersave" | tee /sys/devices/system/cpu/cpu*/cpufreq/scaling_governor
 
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Snk B

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Jul 19, 2022
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My pfSense VM ran for a week or more without freezing but then inevitably froze up. My Ubuntu VM running Docker VM tended to freeze more often. I've documented these issues with some verbosity over at the Proxmox forums if you'd like to have a look. Also feel free to check out the bugzilla reports on Proxmox and kernel.org.

No freezes since moving to ESXi (yet) - will keep everyone posted on stability.

To change the CPU governor on the Proxmox host:

apt -y install cpufrequtils

Change to powersave immediately:
echo "powersave" | tee /sys/devices/system/cpu/cpu*/cpufreq/scaling_governor

Check that the powersave governor has been enabled by running cpufreq-info

Permanent change on reboot
crontab -e

Add:
@reboot echo "powersave" | tee /sys/devices/system/cpu/cpu*/cpufreq/scaling_governor
Hello!!
Thanks for the feedback and the tutorial.
Earlier I was reading your reports there on the proxmox forum... I was interested in the discussion, because I had this problem of crashing in ubuntu VMs.
I really wanted to test ESXI, but I couldn't get the image with the i225v b3 drivers. The ESXI 7.0 that is on the VMware website, does not have the drivers and I end up having errors in the installation.
I believe the problem is more related to the PVE than the hardware itself.
Apparently pfSense, with the optimizations that are on their wiki (pfSense® software Configuration Recipes — Virtualizing with Proxmox® VE | pfSense Documentation) is working perfectly
3 days.
Be sure to give us feedback on the stability of ESXI on your host... I'm following your case closely to stay informed.
If ESXI is more stable, chances are good that I will remove Proxmox and install VMware.
 
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dums

Member
Aug 14, 2022
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Can you describe your setup in more detail? I've observed the same with some OSes (e.g. Proxmox) on my MW-JSL2.5G-4L board ("v2") with single HDMI + single VGA out, 32GB Ram, NVMe SSD where I need to have HDMI connected or else disable RC6 in BIOS settings. When I switch my NVMe SSD for SATA it works fine without a screen connected, but then crashes when I enable ALPM to lower the system's power consumption.
System: ""fat" v3 + Samsung 980 500 GB NVMe + single KINGSTON 16GB 2666MHz DDR4 CL15 SODIMM (will consider adding second SODIMM if I'm happy with the system).
OS: OpenWRT 22.03.0-rc6 bare metal.
BIOS: default settings
Since I don't know what happens inside the box with disconnected monitor, I'm not sure if it halts on BIOS or on GRUB prompt or during OS boot. System produces single beep (same as during normal boot), but it never reaches stage where I could ping it. Now I'm considering wiring internal serial COM port and redirecting console output to it.
Another possibility is to brace myself and risk BIOS upgrade to see if it does any good.
 

gyrex

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Aug 4, 2022
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I couldn't get the image with the i225v b3 drivers
You need to build an ISO using the community NIC drivers - Community Networking Driver for ESXi. I'll upload an image I've built which includes these.

Apparently pfSense, with the optimizations that are on their wiki
I used their recommended settings and it made no difference. Both pfSense and my Ubuntu VM froze irrespective of any settings on the Prox host or the VM.

As I mentioned previously, the issue is most likely a kernel related issue and could be related to KVM. There's a number of bugs on kernel.org which are similar to the issues we're encountering.
 
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dums

Member
Aug 14, 2022
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Hello,
I have an idea to use my "fat" v3 to build router/NAS/server all in one appliance. For HDD based NAS application single SATA ports looks rather limiting. So I was looking for a way to convert second M.2 interface into additional SATA ports. Visually "bottom" port looks like M.2 key E and I was able to find board that theoretically would give me 2 additional SATA ports (3 ports in total):
So my questions are: did anyone try to use second M.2 slot for application different that second NVMe disk? Is it really M.2 key E? Did anyone try to install extra SATA ports?
 
Last edited:

BarTouZ

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Aug 14, 2022
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You need to build an ISO using the community NIC drivers - Community Networking Driver for ESXi. I'll upload an image I've built which includes these.



I used their recommended settings and it made no difference. Both pfSense and my Ubuntu VM froze irrespective of any settings on the Prox host or the VM.

As I mentioned previously, the issue is most likely a kernel related issue and could be related to KVM. There's a number of bugs on kernel.org which are similar to the issues we're encountering.

Do you have the command to convert a proxmox VM to esxi ?

Thank you
 

Kaccatu

New Member
Jul 17, 2022
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That looks like the skinny version N5105. I'm guessing that it would need more cooling than the beefier V3 topton unit due to the difference in heatsink size. I've got a V3 unit and pointers from this thread got me to open it up for inspection and doing a repaste. Anyway, I had issue installing Proxmox 7.2 so I downloaded 7.1 and learned some tricks to boot with nomodeset due to the sh!t builtin graphics not detecting HDMI/DisplayPort connection during boot. My setup is nearly there in terms of VMs (only IPFire and Pihole) to get it ready to be connected to my network setup. I don't have much issue with heat yet because its winter here. I've also checked the power usage for different BIOS settings. What I found is that the recommended tweaks from this thread and the full-on mode both use similar power (roughly 10W). The only difference is that the unit would be abit warmer using full-on mode. I'm hoping to go with the full-on mode without adding a fan. I'm going for taller feet and an nvme heatsink as well as knocking out that knockout piece to allow abit more air coming in from bottom. My custom specs: 32GB Kingston Fury 2660MHz DDR4, 500GB Seagate FireCuda 510 Pcie3 NVMe.
 

Kaccatu

New Member
Jul 17, 2022
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Since I don't know what happens inside the box with disconnected monitor, I'm not sure if it halts on BIOS or on GRUB prompt or during OS boot. System produces single beep (same as during normal boot), but it never reaches stage where I could ping it. Now I'm considering wiring internal serial COM port and redirecting console output to it.
This is similar to what happened to my unit when I tried to install Proxmox VE 7.2. The solution was to edit GRUB to boot with nomodeset and don't use UEFI boot. I had to do this many times until I got a permanent solution.
 

Kaccatu

New Member
Jul 17, 2022
5
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3
Hello,
I have an idea to use my "fat" v3 to build router/NAS/server all in one appliance. For HDD based NAS application single SATA ports looks rather limiting. So I was looking for a way to convert second M.2 interface into additional SATA ports. Visually "bottom" port looks like M.2 key E and I was able to find board that theoretically would give me 2 additional SATA ports (3 ports in total):
So my questions are: did anyone try to use second M.2 slot for application different that second NVMe disk? Is it really M.2 key E? Did anyone try to install extra SATA ports?
I wouldn't consider putting a SATA drive on that unit. It will block airflow. Having 2 SATA drives in there would be a mess of a setup. You can pay extra to have them adding a connector to the wifi port to extend out an extra nvme port. Thats probably the best solution if you can add heatsinks to the 2 nvme drives. Not sure how reliable that connector would be.
 

dums

Member
Aug 14, 2022
32
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I wouldn't consider putting a SATA drive on that unit. It will block airflow. Having 2 SATA drives in there would be a mess of a setup. You can pay extra to have them adding a connector to the wifi port to extend out an extra nvme port. Thats probably the best solution if you can add heatsinks to the 2 nvme drives. Not sure how reliable that connector would be.
Since I'm thinking about full size 3.5 inch HDDs, putting one inside mini PC case is out of question (it wouldn't fit physically). I plan to design and 3D print "lower deck" HDD enclosure and have mini PC sit on it (with some screws holding them together). SATA cables would be routed through punch-out hole that was specifically designed for this purpose. Airflow-wise for mini PC it would be the same as sitting on any other flat surface (I don't expect HDD cage to run hot).
Also I don't expect it to look good :)