Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:02 pm

Fixed my zero w system lockups when using the camera

Fri May 04, 2018 7:54 pm


I like to share some experience i made regarding the stability issues i had with my zero w and various programs which use the camera.

In the beginning of using my zero w and the camera for streaming via raspivid and vlc i experience various system freezes. After a while after streaming the system stops. Streaming stops and i can't log into the system.

When i use ffmpeg to capture the stream while streaming, the system crashed even faster.

Most of the time kernel oops occured and the logs never gave me information which let me identify the problem.

Same with Rpi Cam Control. When i start record or use motion detection, the system will freeze after while.

I used Raspian lite. So i tested it with fresh install without and with update && upgrade. No change.
Distro.upgrade. Nope. Latest kernel and firmware. Nope.

I changed the Memory split. Nothing. I changed the power source. Got some with enough power and one with volt/ampere display. Nothing. And at this time i only tried to get a stable rtsp streaming, because i gave more or less up and saw the raspberry zero w only as streaming device.

I tried all the above programs with a pi 2b and they were always stable. So i thought it had to be a zero w problem. But the ram or the processing power could not be the problem. All the parameters were ok and i tested the system with 100% cpu usage and it never crashed like this.

So far my story. And now the good ending.
I thought mmmh stability ...stability, volt Volt!. More Power!!!
So i changed the config.txt and added:

and now it runs stable. Everything Rpi cam control, streaming while recording. Runs for 4 Days.
So i don't know why. My changes are increasing the volts and to increase to 1000mhz which should involve an increasing of the voltage too.
So i stay with a happy mmmh.

Is this a common problem and fix with the zero w or is it just my board?


Posts: 4
Joined: Tue May 08, 2018 1:59 am

Re: Fixed my zero w system lockups when using the camera

Thu May 10, 2018 1:12 am

I too am searching for a problem to the new instability I'm experiencing with the Zero W's. I like what I read here, but see https://www.raspberrypi.org/documentati ... locking.md

There is a small table showing that for the pi zero, the default setting for over_voltage is 6. So did you effectively lower the voltage?
However, with my Zero W's, I ran:
% sudo vcgencmd get_config over_voltage

So I don't know what to believe.

Therefore, I'll try adding your 2 settings and see how it goes on mine. :-)

Posts: 4
Joined: Tue May 08, 2018 1:59 am

Re: Fixed my zero w system lockups when using the camera

Sun May 20, 2018 1:18 am

Upon further reflection, I decided to only change one thing at a time. So I only applied the line "over_voltage=6" (based on the link in my previous post). I did NOT apply the force_turbo setting.

My zero's have been stable for almost 2 weeks so far!

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