Arietta G25 + Wifi Module arrived

Xmas present this year was an Arietta G25 with 256Mb of memory from ACME Systems. This little one features an ARM9 processor at 400MHz, 256Mb of RAM and a bunch of I/O possibilities (GPIO, I2C, SPI, PWM and even I2S and ADC!!!) in around 5cm x 2cm.

The top part of the board contains most of the chips together with the microSD card holder and a push button.

Arietta G25 Top ViewArietta G25 Top View

The back side contains the micro USB connector to connect the board to your computer or power it.

Arietta G25  Back viewArietta G25 Back view
ACME Systems had put in place a lot of good tutorials to start working with the boards. That helps to bring the board up to live easily and also projects a very good image of the product.

I followed the instructions on Getting Started Guide, deploying the default system image provided by the manufacturer. Basically you need to download a pre-baked Debian image from http://www.acmesystems.it/binary_repository, and copy it into your SD card. The process as described in the web works like a charm, I will just add a couple of remarks here:

  • Note that there are two different images depending if you use the wifi module or not
  • Check the download page side notes. You need to change your boot.bin file is you own a 256Mb versions (as I do).
  • Also in the side note follow the recommendation of using gparted to rescale the partitions in your SDCard or create additional ones.
  • Depending on your network configuration you might need to manual update /etc/resolv.conf with your DNS details.
  • Finally you might also need to update the apt source files.

I end up using nano to update the files. vim was not there for sure and I cannot remember whether I tried vi or not.

Together with the Arietta I also got the Wifi module. It cost 7EUR an can be plugged directly on the top of the Arietta.

Arietta G225 and Wifi Module: Arietta G25 with wifi header soldered and a wifi moduleArietta G225 and Wifi Module: Arietta G25 with wifi header soldered and a wifi module

The module comes with a female header to be soldered on the board. I was in doubt of soldering the module directly on the board or use the header. Finally I decided to use the header because the wifi connector seems to be a USB port with a couple of additional lines. With the pin header, there is a bit of space waste, but probably that is good from a heating point of view.

Arietta G25 with Wifi Module InstalledArietta G25 with Wifi Module Installed

The configuration of the wifi module is also well covered in the tutorial pages and it worked flawless for me (I just had to change the resolv.conf file manually, but that could be my fault, and it is not really important). Then I could ssh into the Arietta from my Phone :).

The board provides quite some options to get in.

  • USB network interface.
  • Wireless if you have a wifi module
  • DPI pins. This looks like a serial interface but I had not tried it yet

On top of that, you can ssh into the board or access it via a built-in web-interface providing console access and the Codiad web editor, to start coding directly from the browser. This kind of services that we had seen for first time on the BeagleBone are very nice for quickly getting started with your new board. Unfortunately, I'm not a big fan of those and I haven't tried any, but I think they are a very good idea.

Overall, and so far, I love this board. I haven't done anything useful yet, but it looks like a very nice option of things that does not require a lot of computational power (my BeagleBone Black is there for those cases:). It is very small, power friendly and easily to make it go wireless.

So that's it.

To finish, a picture of the little up and running...

Arietta G25 up and running!Arietta G25 up and running!

... and the output of some standards commands from an ssh session:

Arietta G25 uname, free, cpuinfoArietta G25 uname, free, cpuinfo

Hope to have some more time (maybe in a couple of months) to start doing some real stuff with this small board.

CU
The picoFlamingo Team