norns: update 220321


use SYSTEM > UPDATE while connected to the internet

nb. if you have not yet fresh-installed norns: new image 220306, you will not be able to complete this update – maiden will alert you that a new image is necessary and you will see that your version number hasn’t changed on the SELECT / SYSTEM / SLEEP screen.

norns 2.7.1

  • FIX softcut initialization glitch @catfact
  • FIX compilation optimization flags @catfact
  • NEW system log export @tehn
  • FIX polysub/polysub memleaks @catfact

maiden 1.1.6

  • FIX content type so .sc files can be edited in maiden once again (#219)
  • FIX address linting errors (#216) @midouest


  • update journalctl service @tehn
  • update jack service to properly select codec @ngwese
  • set alsa levels correctly @ngwese
  • deliver dust/audio/common if missing @tehn

now you can export logs for the previous and current boot via the menu: SYSTEM > LOG which creates dust/data/system.log which can then be copied via maiden and posted here or sent to when you’re having issues.

beyond that— lots of very nice fixes, thank you all!

let us know if you run into trouble.


Have been otherwise engaged for the last few weeks. I note also a new 220306 disk image. Do all subsequent updates require the 220306 update + new disk image before updating?

Yes - migrating your device to the 220206 image is a requirement in order to pick up further updates. This update in particular is focused on addressing issues that came up in the 220306 image.

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Cool thank you. You folks have been very busy!

So that’s why I’ve been unable to update one of my norns from 220129 to 220321: because the update requires the disk image. I keep getting the update prompt and the installation appears to be successful. But when I check the installed version, it is always 220129.

This particular norns is housed in a metal case that prevents SD access. Just to be clear, you’re saying that I should remove the case and then the SD card, connect the card to my PC and use etcher to flash it with the 220306 disc image, correct?

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Instructions :slight_smile: help | monome/docs

Thanks very much. But is the answer to my specific question yes or no? I just want to be clear conceptually before getting to the instructions stage. If I didn’t have to take apart my norns, that would be great. But it sounds as though there’s no other way. Also, I don’t want to introduce unnecessary complications that could go wrong.

You’ll need to follow the instructions for “standard norns” on the page linked above. You don’t need to take apart your norns, remove the sd card or dismantle it except for removing the backplate to flip a switch.

Edit: sorry to mislead - I assumed it was a standard norns since most shields don’t have metal cases. As others said below you’ll need to follow the shield instructions. I don’t have one so I’m not familiar with the process.


Thank you for trying to help me. I should mention that this is a norns shield in a custom metal case with four sides that form a single piece. The bottom plate alone is separate. Apologies for not being more specific.

To get to anything inside, I’ll have to unscrew the entire top and lift it off.

I would follow the instructions for the “shield” section of the “fresh install” instructions, would I not? I’ve been looking for mention of your switch there and found it here: “You’ll see a switch through a notch in the norns circuit board. It’s currently on run – switch it to disk. The LED on the back of norns will turn white and remain on until the 6th step.”

So I appreciate your willingness to answer specifically. It sounds as though I’ll go through steps 1-3, remove the case, 4 flick the switch, 5 run etcher, etc., 6 flick the switch again, reattach the case and complete steps 7-8.

That might seem crushingly obvious to everyone else, but I’m only a studio musician and former composition teacher who was terrible in shop and never even learned to solder. So thanks again.

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I think if its a shield you’ll need to pull the SD card and put that into a carrier for inserting into a computer of choice - mac in my case. Then reformat the card for MS DOS Fat - sometimes I find it better to start clean - then use the Balena etcher to load the disk img and flash the SD card. Eject it and pop it back into the Norns Shield… from there you’ll need to redo the disk expansion so you can claim the full size of the SD card. There are instructions how use Terminal to get into that section, and it’s pretty straightforward, no necromancy or spells to cast.

The switch is part of the standard norns, not the shield. The monome shield cases all allow for easier access to the card, but your custom case unfortunately doesn’t and you’ll need to remove the card and follow the shield instructions further down on that linked page. Just use a card reader with your computer. The good news is that you shouldn’t have to do this very often. Also, if you have any custom scripts or audio files, you should save those first to your computer as this will wipe everything out and replace it with the new image.

Thank you both. The detail is really useful, and it’s good to know that my original idea of what I should do was mostly correct. Glad I hadn’t started before reading your response!

I’ll definitely reformat the card before flashing it. I won’t need to back anything up because the good stuff is on my other Norns and it’s well dusted.

I’ve tended to use my PCs for Norns so far, but it seems that this operation would be better suited to my Mac.

But it’s interesting that rings and rocks’ comment about the switch was echoed in step 4 under “Norns: Help – Data Management – fresh install – shield.”

Perhaps they should take a second look at that specific documentation, since a few of us have to be quite literal and unintuitive to end up with the correct result.

It won’t hurt anything but I don’t think you need to do that since it wipes the card when flashing.

I’m not seeing any mention of a switch in the shield section for fresh install, the documentation looks correct to me (and did last night so I don’t think it’s been changed) This is a direct link to that specific section:

I was responding to the following advice:

I’m not seeing any mention of a switch in the shield section for fresh install, the documentation looks correct to me (and did last night so I don’t think it’s been changed) This is a direct link to that specific section

I must have lost my place even though I was trying to be careful. Now you know why I’m trying to be so deliberate about what must seem ridiculously easy to most people here! Thanks again.

running into a weird issue on norns #3

when i try to connect with maiden the browser window is just a blank white page.
i am able to connect with Cyberduck just fine.

thanks for any help!

I’d suggest flushing your browser cache as a start. …after that probably looking in the javascript console (of the browser) for any clues.

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that worked!

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I had surgery last week and was marooned at my significant Lothar’s, so I backed up and flashed the SD on my primary norns shield. Up until now, I had issues with duplicate engines whenever I tried installing too many scripts in maiden. Not so after The Big Flash.

I did get the “jack fail” message on two occasions, though: once after trying to reboot after expanding my storage in terminal and once after installing 100+ scripts in maiden and trying to restart. Otherwise, things seem to work better after the update. (Though I do feel as though I’ve joined the church of e.e. cummings using all of this lowercase.)

Next week, I’ll update the metal-cased norns I mentioned on this thread. Goodbye, PolyPerc duplicate hell.


hope it all went well + glad the flash turned out, thank you for closing the loop! :slight_smile:

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This is OT, but as a non-native speaker and after unsuccessful internet research I can’t help to ask: please, what does this mean?