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Built for work, play, and everything in between!       \(•◡•)/
Built for work, play, and everything in between!   \(•◡•)/
Built for work, play, and everything in between!   \(•◡•)/
39,560 backers pledged $2,071,927 to help bring this project to life.

New Years Resolution: Addressing C.H.I.P. issues.

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Dearest C.H.I.P.sters!

The New Year is upon us and C.H.I.P.s have begun to land in C.H.I.P.ster hands!  After months of anticipation, it's been incredible to finally see C.H.I.P. in the wild. ╭( ・ㅂ・)و

Awesome screen @adamgrieg
Awesome screen @adamgrieg
                                   
Feels good to impress @impressiver
Feels good to impress @impressiver

In only two short weeks, we’ve seen C.H.I.P.sters run ownCloud on C.H.I.P. and turn C.H.I.P. into an Amazon echo.  If this is what happens after two weeks, we can't wait to see what the next 50 bring!

Needless to say, it’s been a hell of a rush, but we weren't without a few rough patches.

When you supported us during the Kickstarter campaign, you pledged for a working C.H.I.P.  WE WILL BE MAKING GOOD ON THIS.  If you experience an issue with C.H.I.P., let us know at ahoyahoy@nextthing.co..

A huge part of making C.H.I.P. all that it can be is working with the community to find our mistakes and correct them for C.H.I.P.sters past, present, and future.  Curious how we're getting better?  Read on!

DOCUMENTATION AND TROUBLESHOOTING

Click through to C.H.I.P. documentation!
Click through to C.H.I.P. documentation!

We've worked long and hard to provide extensive documentation.  Check it out at docs.getchip.com

If you're having an issue with C.H.I.P., check out our new Troubleshooting section or drop into the larger community conversation on the NTC forums.

Have a suggestion to improve our documentation?  Submit a pull request here!

Superbackers soderstrom and DudeJuice have started a C.H.I.P. wiki and a C.H.I.P. subreddit respectively!  Check them out!

FICKLE C.H.I.P.s?

We've seen reports on the forums and twitter that not every C.H.I.P. delivered works reliably out of the box.  Here are some of the most frequently encountered symptoms, and our solutions:

Problem:  My C.H.I.P. is DOA or my C.H.I.P. won't reboot.  The LEDs are on, but I don't see any image on my screen. 

Cause:  NAND complications.  Some C.H.I.P.s have bad NAND blocks that slipped by our testing fixtures.  These bad NAND blocks impede boot up and C.H.I.P. gets stuck in UBoot.  From our tests in house, despite speculation on the bbs, we have not seen anything that would suggest this is an overheating issue.  PLEASE DO NOT put your C.H.I.P.s in the [dirty, wet] fridge or freezer. 

This C.H.I.P. ran stress tests over WiFi in a glorified toaster oven even beyond the USB cable melting. (up to 75.5°)
This C.H.I.P. ran stress tests over WiFi in a glorified toaster oven even beyond the USB cable melting. (up to 75.5°)

Solution A:  Reflash your C.H.I.P.  Luckily, bad NAND blocks can be fixed on the software front and Alex has updated our flashing tools with some sweet, fresh code.  Reflashing your C.H.I.P. using this guideline will fix most of these issues.  Currently, only Linux is supported.  We recognize this process is not the easiest or the most intuitive.  We are working to make it MUCH easier to use for the 1337 and not-yet-1337 alike.  Shoot an email to ahoyahoy@nextthing.co too.  We want to know what went wrong and how it went wrong so we can turn those wrongs into rights, alright?  If reflashing isn't your thing, check out the solutions below.

Solution B:  We're working on a user-friendly NAND repair tool for all platforms: Linux, Windows and Mac.  We're aiming to have this completed by this time next week.

Solution C:  We will send you a replacement C.H.I.P.  When you backed us on Kickstarter, you pledged for a C.H.I.P., not a brick.  We ask that you send us back the problem C.H.I.P. (with a prepaid shipping label we'll provide) so that Alex may perform NAND forensics.  Having it back in office helps us identify and prevent the problem on future C.H.I.P.s.  To get these two C.H.I.P.s passing in the night, email ahoyahoy@nextthing.co.

Solution D:  Because we're producing and shipping in batches, Alex's flashing fix is being implemented on all future C.H.I.P.s, especially and including our manufacturing run in January.

C.H.I.P. KERNEL PANICS

Problem: C.H.I.P. begins booting, but kernel panics.

Cause: Bad NAND Flash provided by our NAND flash vendor. We saw this error in around 2% of our PVT (production verification testing).

Solution: Email ahoyahoy@nextthing.co and we'll ship you a new C.H.I.P.  We'll also send a prepaid shipping label for your kernel panicked C.H.I.P. to run diagnostics at NTC HQ.  We're working improve our test fixtures to catch these, so any bit of info you can send is most helpful.

C.H.I.P. BROWNS OUT

Problem:  My C.H.I.P. booted great, but after a few minutes, it shut itself down.

Cause:  An inadequate or poor quality power supply not meeting C.H.I.P.'s 900 mA requirements can cause a shutdown.  Plugging in an accessory via USB while C.H.I.P. is on can also trigger a power surge that will result in a shutdown. Any accessory (keyboard, mouse, etc) plugged in that even momentarily draws more than the 500 mA limit on C.H.I.P.'s USB port can also trigger a safety shutdown a short time after appearing to boot correctly. Even if your device draws way less than 500mA, it may include current-thirsty bulk capacitors which will exceed 500mA of draw for a moment when the device is first plugged in.

Solution A:  Try a different power supply.  C.H.I.P. requires a 5V power supply capable of supplying at least 1 amp.  Check the specs.  A high-quality power supply and cable will yield a much better and more consistent experience. Boot with a powered USB hub for your accessories that could be drawing current.  Make sure your accessories are plugged in before booting C.H.I.P. up.

Solution B:  Delimit the AXP-209 power management chip on C.H.I.P.  We set the limit conservatively for our initial shipments.

Solution C:  If the above solutions don't work, we want to see it!  Email us at ahoyahoy@nextthing.co and we'll swap out your C.H.I.P. for a working one and perform our own series of rigorous tests to see if we can't prevent these brownouts in the future. 

KERNEL HACKER C.H.I.P.s

Problem: I'm a Kernel Hacker Backer and haven't received my C.H.I.P. v1.0s or a notification that they've shipped. What's the deal?

Cause:  We had a logistics error which marked your rewards as shipped when your pledge was only partially fulfilled.

Solution:  Kernel Hacker Backers’ C.H.I.P.s will start shipping this month from our second production batch. Address confirmation emails have been sent. If you did not receive an address confirmation email, shoot us your address to ahoyahoy@nextthing.co so we can get you your production C.H.I.P.s.

TRACKING IS CONFUSING 

Problem: The tracking links provided do not display my name or full address. They seem to be left a crossdock facility or stuck in New York (or elsewhere.)

Cause: We do not require a log-in to view your tracking information. Name and full addresses are hidden to keep your information secure.  C.H.I.P. has a long interesting journey from our warehouse in Hong Kong to your door.  At this time, it can take a few days to update its location.  Once your C.H.I.P. has passed customs, you'll receive more regular and detailed through your local post carrier (ex. USPS) like you would any other shipment.

Solution: We’re working on making our own tracking system page for customers that delivers tracking information in a much clearer way. This is in progress, but will not be fixed overnight.   If you received a shipping notification, we've vetted your address, and it is on its way to you.

SHIPPING IS TAKING TOO LONG

Problem: My C.H.I.P. shipped before the New Year and has yet to arrive.

Cause:   On their way to you, C.H.I.P.s must pass through customs and change hands to your local postal carrier for last mile delivery.  Sometimes these handoffs and processings take longer than others, which make it look like your C.H.I.P. is 'stuck'.

Solution:  We're in constant contact with our shipping partner to ensure these issues get solved.  If you C.H.I.P. has taken beyond the estimated 7-9 days to arrive, please email us at ahoyahoy@nextthing.co and we'll see what the hold up is. 

SUPPORT RESPONSE TIMES

Problem:  I emailed/tweeted/facebooked and the response was slow, if it ever came at all.

Solution:  One of the first (and biggest) changes we’ve made in 2016 is distributing customer support requests across the entire NTC team. This will not only help us get you answers more quickly but also puts you directly in contact with the team member best equipped to answer your question.

LET'S GET BETTER TOGETHER!!!

Problem:  That's a lot of problems you just mentioned!

Solution:  Knowing is half the battle!  We want the C.H.I.P. experience to be awesome and you, as our very earliest supporters, are a very big part of helping us get it there.  From the hardware and software to customer support and documentation, your feedback is crucial to us being the best NTC we can be.  Reach out and give us your feedback!

SHIPPING UPDATES!!!

December C.H.I.P. backers should have their C.H.I.P.s by now. If you have not received your C.H.I.P., email ahoyahoy@nextthing.co and we’ll make C.H.I.P. happen for you.

Our January production run is about to kickoff, which means C.H.I.P.s for our January C.H.I.P. backers and our Kernel Hacker Backers.  Shipping will begin the last week of January.  All KHBs should have received address confirmation emails. If you have not, email support@backerkit.com.

February C.H.I.P.s are still on target to ship by February, just as March C.H.I.P.s are on target for March.  PocketC.H.I.P.s and adapters are still on schedule to ship by May.

Anyone who has not finished their backer survey through BackerKit, should do so. Any questions pertaining to BackerKit can be sent to support@backerkit.com.

Thank you for your continued support (and patience)!

mmmtc (much much more to come)

hearts - everyone at NTC (especially Alex and Crunch, your distro and forum wizard)

Kyle Piotrowski, George Mack, and 58 more people like this update.

Comments

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    1. SpellShell on January 31, 2016

      My request number to you support mail is 6335

    2. SpellShell on January 31, 2016

      You point the wrong subject on the packadge so I can't recive it. You point subject my nickname instead of real name and lastname.

    3. Evan H. on January 21, 2016

      Uh oh.

      I just disabled the AXP-209 chip and the Chip won't start up, period. Nothing. Screen is blank.

    4. Missing avatar

      trneal on January 19, 2016

      Can someone update on "chip won't start" option B?

      Tom

    5. Missing avatar

      ricky roberson on January 16, 2016

      This was the right update at the right time. Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!

      Hang in there, NTC guys and gals. You will persevere !!!

    6. Missing avatar

      Aaron Dickson on January 14, 2016

      Thanks for the update guys! I actually sent an email a day or two ago regarding the shipment date for HDMI adapters, but this answers that question. You guys are awesome, and I'm absolutely loving my CHIP(s) so far.

      Your online documentation for the CHIP is pretty freaking awesome, too. Answered questions that I didn't even know I had.

    7. Maxime M. on January 14, 2016

      I am also impressed by your work, congratulations ! I was just wondering if we could know if we are planed to be in january, febuary or march shipment ? (do you ship by country ?)
      Thanks ! :)

    8. Robert Hencke on January 13, 2016

      I am impressed and thankful for a very honest, clear update. You are handling it well and communications like this really do make all the difference. Kudos to you guys - keep up the good work. :)

    9. pclabtech on January 13, 2016

      Even though you are going through the pains of getting this off the ground, you, unlike a lot of the Kickstarters I have backed, are very thorough in explaining every aspect of the problems and how to fix them. I am thankful you have a vested interest in your customers and not just "Here's your product, goodbye!"

    10. Jeff Larkin on January 13, 2016

      As someone affected by multiple of these problems, thank you so much for such a long and helpful update.

    11. Missing avatar

      Lou M. on January 13, 2016

      Thanks for an informative update. What I really want to know is... how cool was it to make it into this months Make: ?

    12. Dave Gauer on January 13, 2016

      Excellent update. Your hard work shows.

    13. Missing avatar

      Chris on January 13, 2016

      The addon boards are not coming for a few months!

    14. Missing avatar

      ryodoan on January 13, 2016

      Both my CHIP's arrived safely, but the HDMI board I ordered as an 'add on' was not with them. Are the HDMI boards shipping separately? Any ETA for when they will be shipped?

    15. Missing avatar

      Saman Amighi on January 13, 2016

      This is what I call great communication. Very transparent and to the point.

      Enjoying my Chips and can't wait for more.