Volumio 3.569 update completely breaks install on RasPi 4

Hi. New to the community, but been using Volumio on Raspberry Pi 4 4GB for about a year, now.

And although I’m a fan of the software, I’ve already lost countless hours over this, which frankly no one will give back to me. And I do appreciate all the work and time put into what is essentially an open source piece of software. But my frustration has gone beyond the point of no return. I’m sorry guys, but it is unacceptable for a piece of software that has such wide adoption to have such bad integration.

My problem is simple: after updating to version 3.569 from the previous stable version (can’t remember the exact one, but it was the latest at that point), my installation broke completely. And it’s not first time. Once, my install was completely broken after not using it for a month and basically me not touching it at all or doing updates.

Before you ask, NO, the SD card is not corrupted. I’m running a multiboot system and the rest of my software runs fine. I use PINN and run Volumio in parallel with Raspberry Pi OS, RetroPie and LibreElec. This is essentially a media hub.

Now, the only way that I can reinstall Volumio without completely reinstalling everything from scratch is by reinstalling just Volumio, through the PINN safe mode. However, the latest version integrated into PINN is 3.198, which is frankly a pretty sad version in terms of UX and UI.

When I try to update through OTA from 3.198, it goes directly to ver. 3.569. And it breaks again. I’ve tried this multiple times.

And before you ask, I have no access to SSH, the system quite simply does not seem to boot anymore, it no longer gets an IP (I’ve checked this in my router admin multiple times) and there is no output on the screen (through HDMI) when booting. Not even one word. Zero, zip, zilch, nada. And of course, it’s not like I can access any kind of logs, since the screen is completely blank.

At this point, there seems to be no other option but run 3.198 and await a new update, which hopefully will fix this. However, after combing the community forum, I don’t see anyone with the same issue, which I find quite weird. I can’t be the only one running such a config, right? And if I am, how can i expect a fix?

I should mention that I’ve run this config for years without any issues in updating other software. And I’ve gone through at least two updates of Volumio last year from the original one integrated in PINN, and there were no issues. Apart from finding one day that my install didn’t work one day after I hadn’t touched it at all for about a month (as previously stated). But that time I managed to reinstall to the initial version and do a couple of updates to the latest version through OTA, without any issues. So please don’t tell me that Volumio doesn’t work with boot managers, because it’s worked fine up until now. Also, I’ve never had the test option on, so there have been no updates to beta versions.

So, I ask you, is this ok? Should I continue to use your software, or should I just frustratingly never go back to it, because “simple” things seem to update from just a seemingly harmless update?

Please understand my frustration and lack of any reference here (since everything jut breaks and I have no way of checking why and how) and please offer some assistance.

This might be the root cause of everything. Volumio has not been designed to run via a boot loader and this is what might break during updates. I would say that the fact it did work before was more of a chance than anything else.

I would recommend flashing Volumio on its own SD Card and use it that way. We cannot and will not guarantee it working on other setups.

The PINN image is a customized version, which relocates the volumio partitions and contains a modified initramfs to enable booting. On top of that, partition sizes are fixed and based on values which were valid at the time of 3.198. Meanwhile the boot partition has been redimensioned, causing your boot issues.
There are more complaints about PINN boot problems after using OTA.

There is nothing the volumio community can do, please refer to the creator.
(AFAIK, the customized 3.198 image was created here: matthuisman (Matt Huisman) · GitHub.
Unfortunately, it seems he stopped maintaining it, see “issues”).

I found the issue on PINN repo and added a warning also there.

Would like to avoid other situation where we are blamed for using Volumio in ways it was never meant to be.

Again, I really appreciate what your guys are doing. But what you’re essentially telling me is that I have to completely redo my entire setup and get a separate RasPi just for Volumio. Well, that defeats the purpose of multifunction computer. So, although I understand your reasoning, what I don’t understand is why you’re not officially supporting multiboot and boot managers that are already used the hundreds of thousands of people. Especially since people have built versions of your software that can do it. Again, it kind of defeats the idea of supporting RasPi.

Well, thanks anyway.

Ah, thanks so much! That makes things a bit clearer. I’ll write to the image creator.

Do you happen to know, by any chance is there’s any way that I can expand the boot partition before updating and potentially getting the update to not brick my install?

Thanks again!

sorry, there is nothing you can do, other than fixing matthuisman’s scripts. I’m not wasting time on it, perhaps some one else will.

Yes. This is the use-case we support.

Volumio is designed to make a Raspberry PI (or a PC or another SBC) into an high quality music player, not a general purpose machine. Every effort that deviates from our core mission simply removes focus and development time to improve what we think we do best.

This also considering that an SD Card costs around 8 euros\USD and the PI about 50, general purpose computing via a mean of bootloader does not make such an urgent use case for us.

1 Like

@annnoyedRomanian @gkkpch

So the issue is indeed with the size of the boot partition of the v3.198 Volumio version that PINN installs currently. However, it is possible to work around this and update Volumio to the latest version (inside PINN or standalone) using some simple “partition surgery” using a program like DiskGenius. Just in case others come here looking for a solution I am linking to my discussion of this on GitHub:

Upgrade Volumio to latest version when using PINN.

The Volumio team is currently modifying the boot procedure for RPi to enable USB and NVME boot support on newer devices, this is in alpha testing at the moment.
When released, PINN will have its next issue with initramfs as it will no longer be compatible with the one PINN uses.
And there is a next, big initramfs change on the horizon.
Just to let you know…

For those who are running into the same issue, the method described by @Arlo_Infinity worked like a charm and I encountered no issues at all. My SD card PINN multi-boot installs are all intact and I was able to resize the Volumio boot partition. Just a small watch out: you have to downsize another partition where you have enough spare space, and then you can resize the Volumio boot partition with the space you get from that. After that you’ll be able to reinstall Volumio in PINN’s safe mode. It will install the latest version directly. (3.616).

Matt Huisman was kind enough to also update the image in PINN to the latest Volumio version. And he has also increased the boot partition size.

Matt Huissman @Arlo_Infinity are the embodiment of kindness and have given us a great lesson about the the power of community. Thank you to both of you!

Thanks also to @gkkpch for letting us know about the latest development efforts. But, hei, USB and NVME boot… that’s fantastic news! :slight_smile: I’m sure after this will become integrated into a stable version we’ll find some ways to tackle the initramfs issues.I presume future updates with this feature included may break the boot files.