Mark II sandbox image issues

Hello all,
I just recieved my Mark II and am trying to install the sandbox image.

On boot I see the following errors:

Failed to start userconfig.service
Failed to start DBus server for hardware access

Does anyone know how to fix those? I don’t seem to be able to control the lights or fans using the mark2-fan command.

In case anyone else is struggling with this, here’s what I did. I ended up installing parts of dinkum since it seems the message bus is part of that? I would have thought the sandbox image would work out of the box independently of dinkum, but I guess not. I am not a linux guy, nor do I fully understand everything about the mycroft architecture, but hopefully this will help people who are looking to get some use out of the mycroft hardware.

Instructions to get this working

I put dinkum in /usr/local/mycroft-dinkum

Update requirements:



Create .venv

cd /usr/local/mycroft-dinkum/shared/
pip install .

Update your mycroft.conf

This should go in /home/pi/.config/mycroft.conf
I also stuck it in /etc/mycroft.conf cuz I wasn’t sure which one was used.

  "stt": {
    "module": "mycroft"
  "tts": {
    "module": "mimic3_tts_plug",
    "mimic3_tts_plug": {
      "voice": "en_UK/apope_low",
      "preloaded_cache": "/opt/mycroft/preloaded_cache/Mimic3"
  // The mycroft-core messagebus websocket
  "websocket": {
    "host": "",
    "port": 8181,
    "route": "/core",
    "ssl": false

  // The GUI messagebus websocket.  Once port is created per connected GUI
  "gui_websocket": {
        "host": "",
        "base_port": 18181,
        "route": "/gui",
        "ssl": false
  "enclosure": {
    // Platform name
    // Options: 'picroft', 'mycroft_mark_1'
    // Override: SYSTEM (set by specific enclosures)
    // "platform": "picroft",
    // "platform_enclosure_path": "/etc/myenclosure/",

    // COMM params to the Arduino/faceplate
    "port": "/dev/ttyAMA0",
    "rate": 9600,
    "timeout": 5.0,

    // ??
    "update": true,

    // Run a self test at bootup?
    "test": false

Set up systemd units

Reference: Services - Mycroft Mark II

The message bus is the one you need so you can control the fans and whatnot. Note: I didn’t want to install the rest of the services since I just wanted to use the hardware without the full mycroft setup. If you just want to control the fans and leds and buttons I think you just need the messagebus. I’m not sure if the enclosure is necessary.

cd /usr/local/mycroft-dinkum
sudo python scripts/ --user pi --service 0 services/messagebus --service 1 services/hal --service 1 services/audio --service 1 services/gui --service 3 services/enclosure --venv-dir /usr/local/mycroft-dinkum/shared/.venv

then run
sudo systemctl daemon-reload
sudo systemctl start

sudo journalctl -f -u dinkum-messagebus.service

commands that should work:

mark2-volume 50
mark2-fan 50
mark2-leds 255,0,0,255,0,0

Also, in retrospect it probably would have been easier to just use the dinkum image and remove the services you don’t want.

MycroftAI no longer has a development staff. There might be more rakes to step on in the grass.

This is not to say that you shouldn’t experiment, but the image you’re playing with is abandonware. The project continues under different stewardship.

You may or may not have seen chatter about an open source collective called OVOS, or a company called NeonAI. OVOS is a bunch of Mycroft contributors who forked a few years ago, and now we’re opening a nonprofit foundation to continue development. NeonAI offers a consumer-ready Mark II image, and has formally taken over MycroftAI’s software support obligations.

OVOS’ and Neon’s Mark II images are all based on a derivative of “classic” Mycroft, and should provide everything you were expecting out of the Mycroft brand image. Please let us know if we can be of any assistance. Migrating users is a high priority, as we are not equipped to support Dinkum or the sandbox image.

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