Welcome to the new FlexRadio Community! Please review the new Community Rules and other important new Community information on the Message Board.
If you are having a problem, please check the Help Center for known solutions.
Need technical support from FlexRadio? It's as simple as Creating a HelpDesk ticket.

Flex 6400M Backup SD

DaveDave Member
It appears Flex6400 series radios boot from an SD card.  As we all know SD cards can fail.  Has anyone ever backed one of these up?  Does Flex make images available in the event of SD card corruption or failure? 
«1

Answers

  • Bill -VA3WTBBill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited March 2019
    In the early days when the new radio started to come out there were a few were the SD card failed on the customers. After a Help Desk Flex was able to determin the problem. They sent the customers new SD cards and the customers replaced them on site.

    I know these SD cards are not the same ones we buy at the stores, these cards are a very heavy duty card that will read and write much longer then the cards we all use in our devices.

    As for backup on site, I'm not aware of anything,,yet.
  • Ted  VE3TRQTed VE3TRQ Member ✭✭
    edited May 23
    Now that’s a really good question! The configuration is easily backed up with SSDR on a computer, but what about the software that runs the radio (and the “M” interface)?
  • MackMack Member ✭✭
    edited December 2019
    Dave,

    Please do not back up your SD card. You will likely void your warranty. 

    If you have a failure under warranty then Flex will handle all repairs. Out of warranty then the cost of repair is very reasonable if it is a SD card failure.

    73,

    Mack
    W4AX
    Alpha Team
  • Ted  VE3TRQTed VE3TRQ Member ✭✭
    edited March 2019
    The SD card is probably not easily accessed, but how can backing up an SD card void a warranty??? I use SD cards for Linux and Windows systems all the time, creating copies at will, including touching up partitions as necessary.
  • DaveDave Member
    edited March 23
    I work in IT and we have cards in commercial equipment fail from time to time. Sometimes things just get corrupted.   I think it would be great (especially for those with radios out of warranty) to be able to have access to or have the ability to make recovery images for their radios.  Just something I was pondering, food for thought.  
  • DaveDave Member
    edited March 2019
    Thanks Mack, Was not attempting this, was just inquiring. 
  • edited June 2019
    I would like to see a response from Flex on this issue.
  • DL4RCEDL4RCE Member ✭✭
    edited June 5
    Hi all,

    just thinking the same. Clone the card 1:1 (like a hdd / sdd) should work, why not?+

    Volker, DL4RCE
  • Dean DavidsonDean Davidson Member ✭✭
    edited June 2019
    If it's that easy to backup I dont see the problem but I will wait until warranty is out but you would think if it corrupted flex would send an image for us to image a card instead of having to send the entire radio back in.
  • BobbyBobby Member
    edited October 2019
    Where can I find the instructions for swapping out the sd card with a new one from flex, I would like to be proactive not reactive. Since my warranty is expired and apparently since the software provided is not covered under any warranty according to the manual I want to be prepared as well as I can be for the inevitable sd card issue, this appears to be the weak link in the system since its a brick without a working sd card. Thanks! Bobby
  • DL4RCEDL4RCE Member ✭✭
    edited June 5
    Hi Bobby, I think there is no "official" guide / how-to available. It is not complicated but takes some steps. Currently I do not have documented it well enough in order to share, additionally I do not want to step on Flexes toes since I guess it is not supported.

    73

    Volker
  • BobbyBobby Member
    edited June 2019
    Thanks anyway I will figure it out.
  • DL4RCEDL4RCE Member ✭✭
    edited June 5
    Can you give me your email addy?

    Volker
  • Bill -VA3WTBBill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited June 2019
    To make this clear. There have been some cases of SD card failures. How ever in most cases the SD cards will last a life time and longer.
  • BL7IBBL7IB Member ✭✭
    edited August 2019
    IMHO, SD card used to last for decade but recent TLC technology is very different thing. Also, even hardware is durable, and power failure during a write operation can may corrupt a file. Whether a corrupt file will **** the whole radio or not depends if the software is well designed to handle such situation. but there are chance that failure doesn’t only affect one file but whole NAND flash block containing other files.
  • Jack6600Jack6600 Member ✭✭
    edited October 2019
    SD cards have a limited number of write cycles. I’m not sure how many times a day the 6400/6600 writes to the SD card, but it is possible to exceed the number of writes. Years ago the number was more than 1,000,000 but with technological advances, the number could have doubled or even tripled.
  • BL7IBBL7IB Member ✭✭
    edited October 2019
    There was some issue with paint on the front panel and I opened my Flex6400 for that.    At the same time, I use a hardware write-blocker (computer forensic stuff) and Win32DiskImager to backup the card.   The size of TF card is only 256M.   
  • edited October 2019
    Hi. my card failed during the last software update in a 6500. The rig stopped with a boot failure (three red flashes) I opened a support ticket and got a replacement card from the EU service center via mail, so I do not need to ship in the TRX. The card is placed inside the RF cage, to open it you habe to break the warranty seal, you should know what you do here. By the way, Flex support was quick and perfect. 73 Henning
  • Nick RN3KKNick RN3KK Member ✭✭
    edited November 2019
    Create image from SD easy procedure. Insert card to card reader and connect  his to linux PC.
    next need two command in linux console
    dd if=/dev/sdc of=/opt/backup.img

    backup.img this is full image

    and for create new SD
    dd if=/opt/backup.img of=/dev/sdc 

  • BL7IBBL7IB Member ✭✭
    edited October 2019
    Not really.    Old day SLC NAND flash are more durable.

    Old SD cards are SLC (Single layer cell) each block can be written >= 100000 times, nowadays cheap SD cards are TLC (Triple layer cell) each block can be written only <= 10000 times.    Although most SD cards has controller using wear levelling algorithm to prolong the life, the number of write cycle is still limited by physical cell life.     Also, block size of newer SD cards is larger, changing one bit inside a block need to rewrite the whole block.  

    Flex6400 come with a 256M SD card, AFAIK no consumer grade SD card nowaday is that small.    I guess it is good quality industrial grade SD.        I believe Flex has look into write cycle limitation and they should optimised the software to avoid too frequent writing to SD card.
  • AE2AAE2A Member ✭✭
    edited May 23
    There are many of us us Flex Radio owners that are fully capable of rewriting a simple SD card from an image. I would save Flex thousands of dollars in support costs if they made the 'official' image available for download (and update). The micro SD card is a 256MB Industrial unit and they can be purchased for less than $20 at most industrial supply houses. Using only an SD card reader and Win32DiskImager it is easy to make a backup of the factory SD card and store it somewhere safe should your SD card become corrupted or suffer a failure. Flex should take note of this!
  • John - AI4FRJohn - AI4FR Member ✭✭
    edited December 2019
    It might be easier if one is worried about it to have Flex send us the TURF file which is radio specific. Rewrite SD card and if it works then great. If not, install new SD card and try again. There's your back-up. Unless there is more on the SD card then the above file. I've never checked.
  • Mike-VA3MWMike-VA3MW FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager admin
    edited May 23
    I think I commented on this a while back (and I thought it was this thread).

    That being said, the SD Cards are not your run of the mill Class 10 cards.  They are special bread of commercial SD card used in the medical and military world.   The engineering team (Steve, Gerald, etc) spent a lot of time researching cards and the only purchase from 1 vendor.  It is not trivial stuff.

    If you have an SD card issue, please open a support ticket.

    Mike


  • peterpeter Member
    edited May 23
    Ive just received a replacement card....no protective case on the card, just a piece of paper included with the return address no S.A.S.E
  • Bill -VA3WTBBill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited January 28
    Good to hear Peter.

Leave a Comment

Rich Text Editor. To edit a paragraph's style, hit tab to get to the paragraph menu. From there you will be able to pick one style. Nothing defaults to paragraph. An inline formatting menu will show up when you select text. Hit tab to get into that menu. Some elements, such as rich link embeds, images, loading indicators, and error messages may get inserted into the editor. You may navigate to these using the arrow keys inside of the editor and delete them with the delete or backspace key.