No HDMI signal in Screenly OSE Raspberry Pi


Hi there, I’m pretty new to the Balena environment but I have managed to install my first device.

I’m using a Raspberry Pi Zero W, it’s already loaded with Balena OS 2.29.2+rev1 and connected to BalenaCloud. The status of the device is online.

When I go to the Public Device URL, I can see and confirm that Screenly OSE is installed and running, however, the monitor connected to the Raspberry Pi is in black .

The Screenly Monitor & Power Info says: Unable to run tvservice. Unable to determine display power

At the first boot, I was able to see the screen and text while Balena OS was installing in the Raspberry Pi .

The installation guide doesn’t mention any more steps, although I remember searching on google and I finding a blog saying that one more step is needed for the Screenly package to be able to show locally through the Raspberry Pi hdmi output but I can’t find that page with those instructions.

Any suggestions ?


Hey @lenc, could you let me know which tutorial or base images you are using for this so that I can try to replicate the issue.

Secondly, is the HDMI monitor/tv connected before the raspberry pi is turned on?

You can also try adding the environment variable hdmi_force_hotplug=1 which will forge the GPU to enable HDMI.

Let me know how it goes.

Thank you


I’m in a similar situation. I’m just starting, and I had a Balena logo on the screen until I installed Screenly. I turned the monitor on, the slides I loaded appear for about 1/2 second, and then the screen went blank. I changed to a different display device, and it worked.

It seems that the monitor I was using didn’t like either the set resolution or scan rate. I found a different one, and the monitor info now says: state 0x12000a [HDMI CEA (16) RGB lim 16:9], 1920x1080 @ 60.00Hz, progressive
I’ve got an old small television I plan to use with this, so I’ll try to go in to edit the config file to change the output resolution.


@Pauldow you can also set the resolution via config variables within balenaCloud. All of the options are documented on the Raspberry Pi site here, any of which you can add in the dashboard by prepending BALENA_HOST_CONFIG_.