Rock64: Installing Arch from Debian Jessie

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Re: Rock64: Installing Arch from Debian Jessie

Postby tarmiste » Mon Dec 04, 2017 11:13 am

I was able to install Arch onto my Rock64 using the iinstructions found in the OP.

Initially it runs using the kernel (4.4ish) and initrd.img from the Debian install, not a kernel from the Arch tarball. None of the Debian kernel modules are present in the Arch rootfs. I haven't noticed any problems (although I haven't run much on it) but missing kernel modules might cause some odd behaviours.

I decided to build/install the kernel and modules from the Debian source (ayufan version). First using the Arch tools, the build failed with numerous compile errors. I switched to building with the Debian tools and there were less build problems but still not error free. I then pulled a copy of the kernel source as it was on 9/14/2017 (which was the date stamp of the most recent Debian release) and was then able to get a completed kernel build using Debian tools.

I repacked the initrd.img with the modules from my build and am running with it and my rebuilt kernel.

I took a shot at building (using Arch tools) a 4.14 kernel for it. the kernel build completed without much problem and the kernel started booting but did not come all the way up to a functional system. So, for now, it looks like I'll have to stick with the the kernel from the Debian install.
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Re: Rock64: Installing Arch from Debian Jessie

Postby tarmiste » Thu Dec 07, 2017 4:43 pm

Some good news regarding Arch on the ROCK64... I have found that the recent 4.14 kernel already has some support for the ROCK64 board and that the Arch kernel boots on the ROCK64.

Assuming you've following the instructions in the OP, and are already running Arch on the ROCK64, to start using the Arch kernel:

#Update first (and I usually reboot after a full update...)

pacman -Syu

# Images are loaded from /boot/efi

cd /boot/efi

# Make copies of originals

cp Image origImage
cp dtb origdtb

# Install Arch kernel and dtb

cp /boot/Image Image
cp /boot/dtbs/rockchip/rk3328-rock64.dtb dtb
sync

Then reboot.

Ethernet and serial console works. Bad news is that graphics doesn't seem to work but at least there is enough support in 4.14 for the ROCK64 to boot and have some functionality.
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Re: Rock64: Installing Arch from Debian Jessie

Postby dannysantos1985 » Tue Dec 12, 2017 8:43 pm

Can you tell me how can I get/create /boot/Image and /boot/dtbs/rockchip/rk3328-rock64.dtb files?
Does USB 3.0 work with this archlinux?
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Re: Rock64: Installing Arch from Debian Jessie

Postby tarmiste » Wed Dec 13, 2017 2:14 pm

The needed Image and dtb files (and also the ramdisk) are installed in /boot (or a subdir) automatically when you do the pacman -Syu step.

The existing Arch Linux Arm kernel package for 64 bits already works for the ROCK64. Whether that is by design or lucky accident, I don't know, but the needed files originate from the Arch kernel package.

So, after doing the pacman -Syu step, do the following to update your kernel, dtb and ramdisk to the ones that are from the Arch package:

[root@rock64 boot]# cd /boot
[root@rock64 boot]# cp Image efi/Image
[root@rock64 boot]# cp dtbs/rockchip/rk3328-rock64.dtb efi/dtb
[root@rock64 boot]# cp initramfs-linux.img efi/initrd.img


Note that the initial tarball may have an older kernel (4.13 something) in it. The kernel needs to be 4.14 or later to work on ROCK64. So, you have to do the pacman -Syu step before switching to the Arch kernel. If you try to use the kernel/dtb etc from the initial tarball, it may not work.

Also note that the 4.14 kernel does not support the HDMI interface. If you are running Arch on your ROCK64, you can ssh into it or use the serial console but HDMI does not work. If you want to use HDMI, you need to stick with the Debian.
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Re: Rock64: Installing Arch from Debian Jessie

Postby dannysantos1985 » Wed Dec 13, 2017 7:10 pm

I'm new to all of this and I would really like to have archlinux on my future rock64.
I have one doubt, how can I do pacman -Syu on rock64 if the kernel that I will initialy comes with the tarball isn't 4.14, so it doesn't support rock64?
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