BeagleBone Green Wireless vs. Black Wireless & I2C

It appears BeagleBone Black Wireless units are out of stock everywhere indefinitely and possibly forever. As far as I can tell, the Green Wireless is basically the Black WIreless without HDMI and Ethernet, which we do not need in our application. We do need wi-fi, though.

And we need both I2C buses for our application. The diagrams of Green’s headers, P9_19 & P9_20, are shown as I2C2_xxx lines. P9_24 & P9_26 are not shown as I2C1_xxx lines. Can they be used as I2C1? And are those lines brought out to the Grove connector for the UART? (that would be nice if they are.)

Are there any other gotchas between Black Wireless and Green Wireless that we must know?

P9 & P8 header compatibility is important because our custom boards plug directly into P9.
And we make some jumper connections to P8.


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Some of the items on the BBGW are not the same as the BBBW.

  1. Wireless takes up some pins.
  2. i2cN is taken up by the Grove Connector

There is a UART taken up by one of the Grove Connectors too. So, one UART Grove Connector and one i2c Grove Connector.

I will post what is taken up in the pins by the Wireless on the BBGW.


P.S. I am not sure if I can find it right away… I will have to research the idea again. These are the files I will search throughout if you are not too busy:

  1. src/arm/am335x-boneblack-wireless.dts · v5.10.x-ti-unified · / BeagleBoard-DeviceTrees · GitLab
  2. src/arm/am335x-bonegreen-wireless.dts · v5.10.x-ti-unified · / BeagleBoard-DeviceTrees · GitLab

Those two, separate files are some of the files I will search through. There are also the -common- files to look into. I think these pins are taken up by Wireless on the P9/P8 headers:

  1. P8.14
  2. P8.17
  3. P8.26
  4. P9.30

But! The pins for HDMI are no longer used up and can be used as GPIO and others like PRU peripheral use:

See here: src/arm/am335x-bonegreen-wireless-common-univ.dtsi · v5.10.x-ti-unified · / BeagleBoard-DeviceTrees · GitLab

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Hi Walter,

I would like to share my experience with you and save you a lot of agony.

We needed large quantities of BBBW for a new order of our system, after 8 months we realized that there would be no more available BBBW’s. We then ordered a large quantity of BBBG units,

That is where the struggle started and after 40 hours of reflashing operating systems and googling we still could not get it up and running like the BBBW. Even the GPIO was not working.

The BBBG came with a version that was created in 2016 and there appeared to be a number of differences.

Eventually we just ordered a Beaglebone Black and added a USB wireless adapter and were up and running within an hour.

Perhaps you might have better luck, but I am a professional electronic engineer that has spent my life writing c++ and dealing with complex systems and could not get this going. My theory is that if I stuck with the struggle it will eventually work but you have to find the answers somewhere, and I could not.

After this experience we ended up with a large quantity of useless green matter but hopefully more grey matter - wiser.


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I really appreciate this information. I thought about going with the USB wireless adaptor but was concerned we’d have to do a lot of work with the kernel to get it to work. Would you share the USB adaptor you used and the steps you took to get it working? We’re running Debian 4.19.

We already have some Black’s on hand. Unfortunately, I’ve already ordered two BBGW units. If I can quickly get them working, I’ll share what I did.