After many fruitless attempts to cobble together a working USB hub setup for the Raspberry Pi, I came to the conclusion – after trying all the USB/mains power adapters I had (from various phones and other accessories), that the power supply made a significant difference to the behaviour of the Pi.. With some adapters, I had to unplug/re-plug the power before the Pi would boot, suggesting (correctly) that all was not well.. As I reported before, things got even worse when I dared to plug in an externally-powered USB hub, and then dared to attach things to it!
So, after scanning the FAQs and the Raspberry Pi Forum, and ignoring the ‘hearsay’, I saw that there seemed to be one recommended known/good power supply that actually gave 5V.. After all – a phone charger is effectively just a battery charger, and not a fully fledged computer power source! Who cared if they didn’t give out exactly 5V? Well – now we care!
The ‘recommended’ charger was the Nokia N97 AC10X charger, and these are available on various internet shopping sites. Mine arrived today, and the transformation with the Pi is significant… It boots immediately when the power is connected, and I can connect the hub, and even connect the USB sound card.. (usual disclaimer applies..)
That is the good news…..
The bad news is – it is better, but still not behaving correctly.. If I connect more peripherals to the hub (like the mouse dongle) then I get the old error/fail messages back again.. I have tried connecting the hub to the Pi with a ‘chopped’ USB cable with the power wires disconnected, but that is no better..
Progress, but still not there, yet… Next task, is to try swapping out the hub, and I need to dig out an old Belkin powered 4-port ‘travel hub’ from storage, and try that!