FlightAware Discussions

I am about to upgrade my old pi B to a new pi4 B 4GB

I am currently utilising my old Pi B (512mb ram) for Flightaware/FR24/adsbex and find that the cpu is running at 100%. So I am planning on an upgrade to a Pi4 B (4GB ram).
I am also currently using a 16GB SD card, however, I now have a spare unused 32GB SD card.
Can I just copy the 16GB card to the 32GB card and then use the new Pi4 straight away to rejoin my adsb journey? or is it going to cause issues?
Kind Rgds

It would probably be just as easy to install a new image as to copy the disk over.

How were you intending to copy it? Using a Windows or Linux machine?

The Pi 4 can have cooling issues, I don’t have one but understand it sometimes needs cooling, fan and heat sink etc



Only buster will work on the pi4.
I’d assume yours might be older.

You can use this guide to start fresh: Raspbian Lite: ADS B receiver · wiedehopf/adsb-wiki Wiki · GitHub
There are other guides available as well, you could use the piaware image or the adsbexchnage image to start with.

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Using the SD card is only recommended in the same architecture, so from one Pi4 to another Pi4

I would not swapp the card between the old and the brand new device, bu tinstall new.
OS is on it (including updates) in less than 30 Minutes, the three feeders are running in another 20 minutes.

I would recommend the Raspberry OS and then use the automatic installer of @wiedehopf:

Readsb is a pretty good alternative to dump1090, so for Flightaware no dump1090 is required, only Piaware.
Beside that you get a very good webinterface with tar1090

32GB is more than enough for a feeder only.

I have always started with the Raspberry Pi OS then added the Flightaware repository and subsequently installed FlightAware but are there advantages to use the FlightAware Image?


You will likely have issues doing that. I would just download a new image, burn it to the new SD card and copy your feeder ID to the new deployment. You’ll have to add the FlightRadar and ADSB-Exchange to it but it’ll give you a fresh start.

If you are getting more and more familiar, the advantages are getting smaller. It’s easier to set up, but the usage is then the same.

Finally it’s your personal taste. I prefer a clean OS over a pre-built image. But that’s just me

The new Raspberry installer is easy to use and you can configure the SD card for first usage even in a WiFi environment.
Then run the OS update, install the tools of wiedehopf as above, piaware and the other scripts you would like to feed.

I’ve recently rebuilt one of my test devices with that method and had it back running in approx 30 Minutes


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Fellow members,
Very many thanks for your replies, I wasnt expecting so many, but you are all indicating the same outcome “fresh Install” which is appreciated.

I first bought the Pi B in 2012 and then it remained in the box untill recently. I find the whole adsb project really suits/fits with my location in the heart of Lincolnshire (lots of civ/mil aircraft) with flight paths.

My old Pi B is running Buster and as for loading the flight tracking software it has all been done manually through the CLI, following lots of google/Pi/adsb forums, weidehopf you are the master without a doubt, most of the advice I have followed have been from your posts. The Pi4 B is due to arrive tomorrow so I may well wait to put it into service at the weekend if I have a bit of free time. I am just disappointed I did not make notes when setting up previously, Doh!!.
Thank you all again
Kind Rgds

Hi geoff,
I am using a Pi400 as my main computer and have a laptop that I have installed Linux on.
Thank you for your replies
Kind Rgds Steve

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Thank you, great advice and information about Readsb as an alternative to dump1090. I wonder if thats causing my CPU problem.
Many thanks
Kind Rgds

Thank you for the advice and a good point about my feeder ID and adding it to the new deployment.
Many thanks
Kind Rgds

I did not find any big difference between readsb and dump1090. It’s more a personal taste and i like supporting other experts work.

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I’m pretty sure I started with downloading one of the flightaware images and ran into problems and then found the master wiedhopf posts, and somehow got it all working, but I agree the fresh install appeals to me. I just didnt make any notes the first time round!! Doh!!
Kind Rgds

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For fresh install, the automated script by @wiedehopf are of course the easiest method.

However for those who enjoy doing this excercise manually, or want to learn, this one is a good guide:

Re-imaging Made Easy

Version 6.0

Yesterday Flightaware has officially released ver 6.0 source-code. However their package repository is still ver 5.0

You may either go now with ver 5.0 package install, and later upgrade to ver 6.0 when Flightaware releases its packages, or use this automated script if you want ver 6.0 right away now:

Piaware ver 6.0 with Adaptive Gain Control - Install it on Raspbian Buster (32-bit and 64-bit) on RPi 2, 3, 4 and Debian 10, 11 Ubuntu 20 amd64 x86_64

FA Package repository (as is now Sep 01):

wget https://flightaware.com/adsb/piaware/files/packages/pool/piaware/p/piaware-support/piaware-repository_5.0_all.deb

sudo dpkg -i piaware-repository_5.0_all.deb

FA Source-code:

$ git clone https://github.com/flightaware/dump1090 
$ cd dump1090 
$ git log
commit 9788588abae4347118ef72b549120a172a996440 (HEAD -> master, tag: v6.0, origin/master, origin/HEAD) 
Author: eric1tran <eric1tran@gmail.com> 
Date: Tue Aug 31 21:26:24 2021 +0000 
          Release 6.0 
$ git clone http://github.com/flightaware/piaware_builder 
$ cd piaware_builder 
$ git log 
commit 6c6f0e9f81fd080903fa030348e2c1b410cb7583 (HEAD -> master, origin/master, origin/HEAD) 
Author: eric1tran <eric1tran@gmail.com> 
Date: Tue Aug 31 22:02:24 2021 +0000 
      Release PiAware 6.0

I did similar too, certainly doesn’t take too long but was under the impression some config files were in a different location for the pre built image. May be wrong.


If it’s buster it will work on the pi4 just fine, no matter where it ran before.

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You’ll have fun, guess in Lincolnshire you have a lot of the USAF practising their shooting in the Wash area.

I run my ADS-B system on a Zero and still have a Pi 2 running a TV tuner and streaming TV across my network via ethernet, This enables TV in other locations without the need for an aerial. All from a Pi 2


Wasn’t there a risk of issues moving from another Raspberry to a Pi4?

Anyways i never tried that…

Nah, should be fine. So long as you have a recent enough image, the same image supports all the different types of Pi hardware.

Thanks, good to know. Need to update my knowledge :slight_smile: