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Battery status display on desktop pannel

Right now you can type "pt-status" in a console window, but there is no continuous battery status display while you are on the desktop.

I have therefore created a little program to display the pi-top battery status on the desktop. It displays a small icon on the task bar.

To download, use the browser and navigate to

Then search in github for pi-top-battery-status

Installation instructions are there.

Questions and suggestions for improvement are most welcome.

Damn i meaned switched not deitched. This editor is missing a way to edit posts after seeing a typo. ^_^



Your batteryLog.txt looks ok. I believe your battery is now in good shape :-)

Enjoy working with your pi-top!

By the way, there is invisible trash can icon at the right side of each message you posted yourself. You can use it to delete a post which really went wrong. What a wonderful user interface!

i have installed this program and it works great but i need to uninstall it so i can fix the task bar.

If you want to uninstall it temporarily, open a terminal window and type "pkill gtk_battery". It will work again after the next bootup. If you want to uninstall it permanently, follow the instructions on the github repository.


There is a new version of the pi-top-battery-status program available at

It solves a problem causing it not to shut down the pi-top at very low battery capacity levels under certain circumstances. You can find an easy procedure how to upgrade your version if you scroll towards the bottom of the page. Sorry for the inconvenience. Please keep reporting any bugs or problems you have with the program.

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In NORMAL mode, the device takes voltage, current, and temperature readings every 250 ms, performs
protection and gauging calculations, updates SBS data, and makes status decisions at 1-s intervals.
Between these periods of activity, the device is in a reduced power state.
I wonder how much time there really is to ask the device about the state of the battery?

bq40z60 Programmable Battery Pack Manager
Technical Reference Manual - page 70 - 5.2 NORMAL Mode


The new desktop PIXEL has been released for Raspbian Jessie (not for pi-topOS), see

Upgrade instructions to PIXEL are in that blog.

The newest version 1.4 of the pi-top-battery-status is fully compatible with PIXEL, but needs to be reinstalled after upgrading to PIXEL. Instructions for upgrading of the pi-top-battery status are at

Thanks to Alexandra Crawford we have a new link for the battery firmware upgrade from pi-top. I have updated the detailed step-by-step procedure to diagnose battery problems, which can be found at

Scroll towards the bottom and look at the link found in the section "What to do if you have problems with your battery".

Suggestions for improvements of this procedure are most welcome.

I have installed gtk-battery but it is giving me confusing information. When the external power is connected it tells me it's discharging and when disconnected it tells me it's charging! This also happens with the status indicator on Pi-top desktop. Any idea why this is happening?
Very strange! Maybe I can see what's going on if you do the following: Delete batteryLog.txt from your home directory (or rename it to something else). Reboot you pi-top. Discharge it for about 1 hour. Then charge it for about one hour. Then post the new batteryLog.txt here, which should show what happened during these two hours. It should show the actual voltages of the cells in addition to the charging and discharging current, as well as the reliability of the i2c communication.
I think the problem is linked to the Pi-top speaker. If I unplug the speaker from the hub the battery status indicator returns to normal. Could there be a clash between the indicator software and the pt-speaker software?
There's definitely an issue with connection of my Pi-top speaker and the battery status indicator. If the speaker is fully plugged in the indicator is not functional and the speaker only works intermittently. However if the speaker is only part-way plugged in the indicator works and the speaker works too! Is this happening to anyone else?
My Pitop has also the speaker, Richards battery gadget and a Microdot Phat display attached on one of these protoboards. So far i only get problems with the speaker them i send to much data via the I2C to the Microdot. Not surprising regarding the unstable nature of Raspberry I2C. Under normal circumstances the system runs flawless. My OS is currently a modified Rasbian on Rasp3. At the moment Im fighting a little to get a working version of the latest Release of Raspian with the Pixel Desktop and all the additions for a Pitop. That are so many keys on the keyboard are without a real function is nibbling on my nerves a bit. Lets give those lazy keys some work :) What version of Raspberry and OS you are using in your Pitop? Personally i think the problem is more something electrically inside your speaker rather then the software.
Oh and could someone please tell me how to make linefeeds in this forum? Everytime im posting something it ends as a wall of text. Quite annoying :)
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