Increase USB power for Raspberry Pi 2 Model B

Increase USB power for Raspberry Pi 2 Model B

I recently bought the Raspberry Pi 2 model B with a Western Digital Elements 1TB harddisk. When I booted the Pi, the USB harddisk makes tiny “clicks” and it seems the harddisk is not getting enough power so I needed to increase the power provided from the USB port.

The network is reached by a USB wifi dongle which also consumed some power. In order to provide enough power to the USB peripherals I bought a 2A power supply. The Pi is going to serve as a media center so I installed the OpenElec image.

Raspberry Pi 2 Model B

After some reading I found an article about increasing the provided USB power with the max_usb_power flag. Please be aware that you need at least a 2A power supply in order to make this work. To enable the higher USB power follow these steps:

Connect to your Pi with ssh the default root password is: opelec

Next we need to make the /flash partition writable. /flash is the same as /boot in other Linux distributions.

mount -o remount,rw /flash

Now open your editor (I use nano) in order to edit the config.txt file

nano /flash/config.txt

Scroll to the bottom of the file and add these two lines:

max_usb_current=1
safe_mode_gpio=4

Now save your work using ctrl + O and press ctrl + X to quit

The next step is to remount your /flash and make it read-only again:

mount -o remount,ro /flash

Now you reboot your Pi and enjoy the power.

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