I have a RPI4 in a remote location that has become unresponsive (not network) twice in the last 6 months. It will be another 6 months until I can travel and replace the device.

My gut says it's a hardware or power issue, as when the device reboots, it comes right back up. That said, Syslogs are empty. Is there any additional light-weight debugging people might suggest I could turn on to catch the issue when it happens?

thank you

1 Answer 1


There are several possible solutions. One is a watchdog timer, they are great on remote locations. The best is to use an external one so all the hardware gets reset. If you can network it, you can change your code so you have to send it a keep alive post every so often, maybe every few days or whatever works for you. If it does not get the post force the watchdog to cycle.

My watchdog does the reset the easy way, it cuts the power for a short amount of time.

Always assume the power on startup will be krappy, so allow enough time in the watchdog cycle to allow for this. You can build one from a CD4020 and a few other parts. Basicly the part is clocked and reset by the processor every so often, if it reaches count it powers the processor down then powers it up after a period of time. Reset needs to be AC coupled so it does not lock up.

As far as your data loss there is memory called FRAM. It is nonvolatile and has write protect capabilities. A 256K chip on a small board is only a few dollars. They can be gotten in SPI or I2C. Let us know if this resolves your problem.

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