Kernel panic booting new Pi Zero

I recently ordered two Pi Zero WH’s and used one and it just worked. (Well mostly, I used it with an Inky pHAT following the instructions to use the latest OS, only to find out after lots of searching that the library installer is not compatible with bookworm. I accept it takes time to update and test installers, but please at least update the instructions.)

But having now tried to use the second one it gives a kernel panic: “not syncing: stack-protector: Kernel stack is corrupted.”

Originally I tried to use it headless, but SSH hung and my router showed the hostname but without an IP address. Attaching a monitor showed the above error, which was the same every time I restart it.

I have ruled out anything external as both Pis were powered by the same 2A powerbank and cable with nothing using USB or the headers. Both were using new micro SD cards which I swapped over and reimaged, but the results were the same. The one I used first worked with the other card, the second still giving a kernel panic on a known working card.

When doing this also tried using different version of Buster and Bookworm offered by the official Pi Imager with no difference.

I could not find anything useful searching the error online, so following the instructions on the support page I thought I would ask here in case there is some kind of known problem or solution before contacting Pimoroni directly to say there is something wrong with the Pi Zero itself.

Is there anything I can do to get it working?

Thank you.

I think you tested almost everything what you can do with the exception of your power source. The 2A of the powerbank don’t matter (the Pi0 does not draw very much), but powerbanks don’t provide a stable voltage. So it could be that one of the two Pi Zeros is more picky than the other one. But this is only to rule out the last possible thing that can go wrong.

Otherwise this sounds more like a hardware problem. This error message is typical for buggy drivers or buggy hardware. The driver cannot be the culprit, since it works for your second Pi0.

So if changing the power source does not help, you should request a replacement unit.

Thanks for the confirmation. I have tried it on a powered USB hub I normally use for lower power devices (including a 4B), and a 100W laptop charger with the same results, so now off to contact support for a replacement.