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Help with 4DPi-32

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  • Help with 4DPi-32

    I've just purchased two 4DPi-32 displays (from Element14) and have just been working through trying to get one of them going on my Pi. As is turns out, the devices I purchases from Element14 are 4DPi-32 modules, and not the 4DPi-32-II modules for which I had downloaded the documentation from the 4DSystems website.

    So I downloaded the datasheet for the 4DPi-32 from the Element14 website, where it instructs to get the kernel from wget
    This greeted me with:
    [email protected]:~ $ wget
    --2019-09-11 23:09:38--
    Resolving (
    Connecting to (||:80... connected.
    HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 301 Moved Permanently
    Location: [following]
    --2019-09-11 23:09:38--
    Resolving (
    Connecting to (||:443... connected.
    HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 301 Moved Permanently
    Location: [following]
    --2019-09-11 23:09:38--
    Reusing existing connection to
    HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 404 Not Found
    2019-09-11 23:09:38 ERROR 404: Not Found.
    How can I get these displays working on my Raspberries (One PiB+ and one Pi4)? Preferably on a reasonably recent Rasbian. Or have I managed to purchase a couple of deprecated LCD displays for which I am unable to download a recent kernel for?

    Must say I'm a little disappointed with this purchasing experience .. I was a little put off that an Australian website was selling to me in USD, which is why I went to Element14 instead. There was no 4DPi-32-II there, just 4DPi-32, so not realising there are two different devices, I just purchased the one that was available. Only on closer inspection after I noticed that the pin headers are different, and then that the circuit board is stamped rev1.3 (c)2014 that I've obviously got old stock.

  • #2

    Sorry to hear your experience is not the best from the start.

    Obviously the information on the Element14 website is out of date.
    The 4DPi-32 was replaced by the 4DPi-32-II as you said, however the kernel pack used is common to all modules so despite what the old datasheet says you got from the element14 website, you should be able to treat it much like the 4DPi-32-II in terms of getting it working.

    You can find this product on our website, however the last update on the Datasheet was from 2017 due to it being discontinued, so just use it as a reference and then utilise the 4DPi-32-II datasheet for more up to date information.

    In the download area of the 4dpi-32-ii page there is a kernel package for buster, which I assume is what you will be using for both of your Pi's, so use that. There are a few posts on this forum about the Pi4, however the datasheet should be up to date with the information required to get it working.

    4D Systems website has always been in USD.
    I will pass on your comments about the Element14 experience to the relevant people, and hopefully that can be sorted out.



    • #3
      Hi James,
      Thanks for you response.

      It is reassuring to know that the kernel package referred to in the 4dpi-32-ii documentation will also work for the 4dpi-32 rev1.3. Although so far I have not had much luck with it.

      I've only tried on my Pi B+, but over the next couple of days should be able to attempt on my Pi4 as well.

      I've used the lastest buster image downloaded fresh from What I haven't done though, is attempted to install the 4d kernel *without* first doing a apt-get update and upgrade. Which meant that my kernel was first updated to 4.19.66, before being downgraded to 4.19.57 when installing the 4D provided kernel.

      After installing the kernel, and setting the Pi to boot into console mode, I could progress no further. It rebooted fine, but I could not start the X server nor follow cailbration steps.

      Step 4.3 is calibrating the touch screen, which seems to be out of order, as it uses an X application - immediately after the step to disable the GUI login screen, but before the step (4.8) to start the X server on the LCD.

      Trying to execute DISPLAY=:0.0 xinput_calibrator at this step (expectedly) results in an error not being able to connect to X display 0:0.

      Skipping ahead to attempt to run startx -- -layout TFT also failed (I'm currently on a client site and don't have access to repeat the error message, but will update this thread when I do)


      • #4

        Welcome to the forum!

        Since 4DPi-32 rev1xx doesn't have an EEPROM, you need to manually modify the content of /boot/config.txt
        sudo nano /boot/config.txt
        Find and uncomment the line #dtoverlay=4dpi-32
        # uncomment one of the overlays if loading from EEPROM is not supported
        Let me know if that helps.

        Best Regards,


        • #5
          Hi John and Kevin,

          Thanks for your prompt response and help.

          Editing the config.txt, and then running startx as root (from an ssh session the pi user doesn't have access to the device tty) got the display up and working.

          In the end no real big drama, but a few little things added up to a bit of frustration.