Pine is fine too to build the decentralised internet

Ethoprotocol
4 min readOct 16, 2022

Ok, we got bitten. We had to try to run an ETHO Protocol node on a Pine64 and no surprise it works. The Pine 64 is a bit more difficult to set up, but it is also much cheaper than the Raspberry Pi.

First, you need to flash an image to get Debian/ubuntu up and running. We have been using the Jammy release from here: https://www.armbian.com/pine64/

The direct download can be done from here and then flashed with for instance Etcher, a popular SD card flashing tool.

As for the Raspberry Pi there are some HW constraints: So what is needed?

  • A Pine64 with SD card
  • An internet connection
  • Some ETHO to stake

Etho Protocol offers different node instances which have different requirements on the HW:

  • A gateway node requires at least a Rock 64 with 4GB of memory, with a 128GB SD card, and requires 30k ETHO for staking
  • A master node requires at least a Rock 64 / Pine A64 with 2GB of memory with a 64GB SD card, requires 15k ETHO for staking
  • A service node requires at least a Rock64 / Pine A64 with 1GB of memory with a 32GB SD card, requires 5k ETHO for staking
https://pine64.com/product-category/single-board-computers/ gives a good overview

So let us get started.

Pine 64 surrection

We power on the device by connecting it to a power supply, keyboard, HDMI monitor and ethernet. When Pine boots it typically takes time as the flash storage gets resized. But you can follow the progress on the connected screen.

When this process is finalized you need to log in via a keyboard and specify a new password for “root”. Once that is done, you can specify the default system shell: we choose Bash.

Then you can create a new user account. We abort this with Control-C.

Now we check the IP address with the following command:

ip a

In our case (and that is really dependent on your homesetup) we are getting the IP address 192.168.1.151. We use that to login via SSH

ssh root@192.168.1.151

We login with the password from before. Next we paste the below commands into the command line.

wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Ether1Project/EthoProtocol-Raspberry-Pi-Node/main/preprocess_new.sh
chmod u+x preprocess_new.sh
./preprocess_new.sh

This will update everything to the latest release. The first batch will trigger a reboot. You need to login again via

ssh root@192.168.1.151

After login, we run again the same script

./preprocess_new.sh

This triggers the 2nd stage of the install, where the firewall, Fail2ban and the user “ether1node” is created. After that we reboot again.

If everything goes well, we finalise with following log
sudo reboot

Now we login as the created user “ether1node”.

ssh ether1node@192.168.1.151

Node install next

Now we install the node SW on our Pine64.

In order to run your node, you need to be a registered user on the Etho Protocol network. Log in to the node dashboard https://nodes.ethoprotocol.com/ and press on “Install a Node”

To run a node you need to have a wallet with ETHO.

  • Gateway nodes, requiring staking of 30k ETHO
  • Master nodes, requiring staking of 15k ETHO
  • Service nodes, requiring staking of 5k ETHO

Staking means that those ETHO need to be on your wallet account as long as you run a node and want to get paid. If you want to stop operating a node the ETHO can be taken off your wallet. Note also that you need to get main

Select the wallet address and then select the type of node you want to run. That would generate the following script:

Copy that script to your command line and execute the scripts. After that, you have a working node.

Back to the node dashboard

You can head back to the Etho Protocol node dashboard and check the status of your newly created node:

Perfect. After 24 hours you will get the first daily reward, paid each 24 hours. Below the historical reward tracker from the info dashboard

Summary

The Pine64 is a much cheaper device than the Raspberry PI. It is a bit more rudimentary compared to the PI: no possible configurations, I need a monitor, a keyboard to start etc.

But the cost differences are significant, so it is worth trying to earn ETHO and then being able to contribute to the decentralized network.

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Ethoprotocol

Etho Protocol is a Ethereum based storage solution, providing decentralized IPFS storage with full EVM compatibility