Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Posts posted by SteeMan

  1. 2 minutes ago, Armin said:

    I suppose that witht the commande mount /boot is from SD Card and not from eMMC ?



    How can I copy meson-sm1-sei610-ethfix.dtb from SD Card to same folder on eMMC ?


    Yes while running from sd card you should be able to do:

    $ mount | grep mmc

    /dev/mmcblk1p2 on / type ext4 (rw,noatime,errors=remount-ro,data=writeback)
    /dev/mmcblk1p1 on /boot type vfat (rw,relatime,fmask=0022,dmask=0022,codepage=437,iocharset=ascii,shortname=mixed,utf8,errors=remount-ro)
    /dev/mmcblk1p2 on /var/log.hdd type ext4 (rw,noatime,errors=remount-ro,data=writeback)

    (If your device is standard you should see that your sc card is device /dev/mmcblk1 with two mounted partitions p1 = /boot and p2 = /)

    $ ls /dev/mmcblk*

    /dev/mmcblk1       /dev/mmcblk1boot1  /dev/mmcblk1p2
    /dev/mmcblk1boot0  /dev/mmcblk1p1     /dev/mmcblk1rpmb

    /dev/mmcblk2       /dev/mmcblk2boot1  /dev/mmcblk2p2
    /dev/mmcblk2boot0  /dev/mmcblk2p1     /dev/mmcblk2rpmb

    (Again if your device is standard you should see both mmcblk1 and mmcblk2 - with mmcblk2 being your emmc)

    $ mkdir tmp

    $ sudo mount /dev/mmcblk2p1 tmp

    (mount the first partition of mmcblk2 to ./tmp - this will mount the emmc boot directory to tmp)

    $ cd tmp

    $ ls tmp

    (you should see the contents of your emmc boot directory here, now you can edit the uEnv.txt file, copy to this directory any dtb you wish, etc)

    $ umount /dev/mmcblk2p1

    (un-mount the disk when you are done, shutdown, pull the sd card and reboot to emmc)




  2. 4 minutes ago, Armin said:

    Therefore, I will try your suggestion:  meson-g12a-x96-max-rmii.dtb


    After booting on SD card:

    - How can I test deeply the ethernet connection (before to transfer the installtion on the eMMC) ?

    - When this is OK, Can I make directly the installation on the eMMC over the previous one ?

    Actually my original suggestion a few posts ago was to try all of the g12/sm1 dtbs and find the one that works best for your hardware.

    To test the different DTBs, you will need to use the working sd card you have from earlier.  Edit the uEnv.txt file and try rebooting with that sd card using the different dtb.  When you find the dtb file that works best for you, you can either reinstall that entire environment to emmc by using the install-aml.sh script (but doing so will overwrite everything you have on emmc), or while running from the sd card, mount the /boot partition on the emmc and edit the uEnv.txt file on the emmc directly.

    The command you are using to set the network speed (ethtool -s) does not persistently make that change, so you will need to do that after every reboot.  I'm sure you could google and find a way to make that change persistent, but if you can get it working without manual changes it would be better for you.

  3. 4 hours ago, Armin said:

    Force the Ethernet speed to 100Mb

    Have you tried all of the dtb files to see if any of them support your ethernet setup without needing to make manual changes?  From above it looks like you are using: meson-g12a-x96-max-no-cvbs.dtb.  I would suggest you try meson-g12a-x96-max-rmii.dtb which is a 100Mb ethernet version of the meson-g112a-x96-max.dtb file.


    Good to see that you have made overall progress today on your box.

  4. 15 minutes ago, MadOp said:

    - stable WiFi,

    I would say that this will be the most difficult requirement to meet.  It is very hit and miss (my experience is mostly miss) whether you will be able to get wifi working on any particular box.  If you are able to, use wired ethernet and you will be much more successful, or alternatively purchase inexpensive usb wifi dongles that have linux mainline support.  In addition to the poor support by the wide variety of wifi chips in these boxes by mainline linux, you can purchase identical looking boxes that have different internals, so just because you have something working on one box (or someone else does) doesn't mean it will also work for another identical looking box because it has a different wifi chip inside.

  5. 6 minutes ago, Armin said:

    cd /boot

    sudo cp u-boot.ext u-boot.sd


    sudo /root/install-aml.sh

    You should not need to do anything with the u-boot file at this point as the u-boot.sd file should already exist (as long as you copied instead of moved the file earlier)

    All you should need to do is:

    sudo /root/install-aml.sh

    Although what I do is become root and run from the root directory:

    sudo su root

    cd root



  6. 4 hours ago, Armin said:

    1. Select a firmware from May into link RK_AML_AW:

    for example Armbian_20.05.4_Arm-64_bionic_current_5.7.0-rc5_desktop_20200516.img


    2. Burn it on the SD Card with Etcher.


    3. Edit uEnv.txt to select only one DTB file (g12 or sm1) into Amlogic section

    (the other DTB files into the other sections needs to be place in comments with # ?)


    4. Rename u-boot.sd to u-boot.ext


    5. Try to boot wtih the SD card on the box


    If this is OK, next step will be to install it on the eMMC.

    1. Select a firmware from May into link RK_AML_AW:

    for example Armbian_20.05.4_Arm-64_bionic_current_5.7.0-rc5_desktop_20200516.img

    >> Yes


    2. Burn it on the SD Card with Etcher.

    >> Yes


    3. Edit uEnv.txt to select only one DTB file (g12 or sm1) into Amlogic section

    (the other DTB files into the other sections needs to be place in comments with # ?)

    >> Yes comment out all APPEND and FTD lines except the one for the DTB you are testing, and the AML boot line.


    4. Rename u-boot.sd to u-boot.ext

    >> Do not do this at this stage, keep it simple and see if you even need this.


    5. Try to boot wtih the SD card on the box

    >> When you boot you need to enable multiboot (either through the "toothpick" method or the android update method.



    If this is OK, next step will be to install it on the eMMC.

    >> Then you should be testing all the features you want/need, perhaps trying with different DTBs to see if others work better or worse, then test with the color fix (cp u-boot.sd to u-boot.ext if you need).

    >> Only when you are happy with how everything runs, would I try to install to emmc.

    >> The idea is to do the setup step by step testing along the way so you know when things in this multistep process are not working for your box.


  7. 2 hours ago, Armin said:

    Moreover,  on this post (https://forum.armbian.com/topic/12988-armbian-for-amlogic-s905x3/page/7/?tab=comments#comment-101721) I have detailled my actions and after reading the the first post of the thread "Single Armbian image for RK + AML + AW", I didn't find where I'm wrong !!!

    You have done a lot of things wrong and not mentioned many other important steps.  For example you are mixing and using pieces of old information that are unnecessary  at best, or problematic at worst.  For example don't use the files from NicoD, as everything you need is incorporated into the current RK + AML + AW builds.  You are also mixing builds, the build you started with is from February and it is now May.  The multiboot process evolves overtime and what got installed into your emmc by multiboot when you first tried may not be compatible with current builds.  Most importantly the key to success is the dtb file.  In your initial post you don't even mention what dtb you are trying.  The general rule is that you should try every dtb file compatible with your cpu (which in the case of the s905x3 would be all g12 and sm1 dtbs) to find the one that works best.

    Here is my recommendation: start fresh.  Start simple then build from there.  By this I mean don't worry about things like the color issue at all at the beginning, as that may not even be an issue for you.  Even if you have the color issue, the system is still usable.  Then once you have a baseline knowledge of what works and what doesn't, then try to get the remaining items working for your needs.  Be prepared to go back to a clean environment (i.e. back to fresh android firmware) multiple times in this process.

    I have a s905x3 based TX3X3 that I am now running happily (as a server without wifi or bt) but I have needed to restore the android firmware multiple times and started over when things just stop working for no apparent reason after I made changes to the box.  

    Finally,  set your expectations low.  You should be able to get a box that boots, has ethernet, hdmi and can be used as a server.  Everything else (wifi, bt, usable desktop, etc) is something that you may get with luck and a lot of hard work.  Unfortunately that is the situation with armbian on these android tv boxes since the device manufacturers  provide no support (in terms of source code or documentation) on their products so there is very little ability to get things working with armbian in any supportable way. (especially true with aml based boxes which is why balbes150 is no longer investing time into their support).

  8. 5 hours ago, Armin said:

    3.4 I have seen 2 drives (ROOT_EMMC and BOOT_EMMC) so I imageine this is the previous installation on the eMMC ==> unmount these 2 drives

    My guess is that this is the cause of your problems.  The contents of emmc are involved in the boot process, (that is where the uboot environment is stored and thus the multiboot script) so you really don't know what your starting point is here.  I would strongly suggest that you reinstall the android firmware to get to a clean starting point.  Then follow the instructions in the first post of the thread "Single Armbian image for RK + AML + AW"

    I also noticed that the uEnv.txt file you have posted has two FDT lines which is not correct.  You should only have one uncommented FDT line in the file.

  9. 1 hour ago, mradalbert said:

    Just now I have noticed that aml_autoscript.zip that I'm executing as update is empty so it could be the problem.

    Here are files I have extracted from boot.img:  https://drive.google.com/open?id=12DJoBFrRRP1v2r0ntPCz5LYXP4DRZL1A

    I'm pretty clueless what I can do to make it work. Any help will be much appreciated.

    Not knowing everything you have tried, let me give a couple of suggestions:

    1) You are using an old build, please use the latest builds from the forum thread "Single Armbian image for RK + AML + AW" and follow the instructions in the first post of that thread.

    2) The android based dtb files are of no value when working with 5.x based linux kernels so don't waste time going down that path.

    3) The aml_autoscript.zip file you are seeing is correct for the purpose it is being used

    4) Make sure to notice the red print in the instructions for the newest builds regarding working from a 'clean' android environment.  If you have previously installed or attempted to install other software (likel coreelec) you will need to reinstall the android firmware to completely remove traces of other linux based os's before being successful in installing these tv box armbian builds.

  10. On 5/11/2020 at 5:03 PM, itchy'n'scratchy said:

    Hi Fellow AML Armbian users


    I tried to install the current version of this Armbian from Yandex Disk on my X92.


    I tried to install the zip from OTA App as well as with toothpick, with both methods I can reach the recovery and choose the USB with the ZIP file but I get the error "cannot load volume /misc" is this a known problem? has anyone ever seen this?


    Thanks for your help

    Based on your question, I think you are doing something wrong.  With the toothpick method the steps described in the first post of this thread don't mention anything to do with recovery.  The steps sumarized are to prepare the image on an SD card, update uEnv.txt, install the SD card and boot while holding down the reset button with a toothpick.  Perhaps you need to provide more details on what you are trying to do.

  11. 12 minutes ago, Jan Gregor said:

    how can I make the X96 Air actually boot from SD-Card? I wrote Armbian_20.05.3_Arm-64_buster_current_5.7.0-rc2_20200425.img to sd-card, updated u-boot settings, plugged the sd-card in to Air, powered on and it boots into Android again. Feels like I am missing some step in there :)

    You are missing a step.  You need to activate multiboot on an amlogic cpu based box.  The instructions are in the first post of the combined AML_RK_AW thread.

    I have copied them here for you:

    If universal multi-upload has not yet been activated on this device, you need to activate it once. There are several options for activating multi-loading.
    option A
    - Connect the prepared media to the device and turn on the power, boot into Android
    - Open the app "Update&Backup"
    - Click on "Select" local update and chose the file on the removable media aml_autoscript.zip
    - Start "Update"
    - System will reboot twice and start running the system from external media.
    option B
    -  try using the "toothpick method"


  12. 4 hours ago, Povl H. Pedersen said:

    How to do that ? 

    I assume fatload image (made with dd), and then write it to eMMC ? 

    But how to I write it to eMMC ?

    Can I boot the USB and use Linux to restore eMMC ?


    I would repeat what balbes150 said above.  For working with amlogic based boxes, I would highly recommend that you get familiar with the USB Burn tool.  I have unbricked many a box with this after experimenting with something that failed.  To use this tool you will need an original android firmware image for your box from the manufacturer.  Generally a quick google search will lead you to one.  Then for less severe problems having a backup of the emmc using the ddbr tool within armbian will give you an easy mechanism to restore your emmc as long as you can still boot armbian from usb/sd.  I have a set of android firmwares for all the amlogic boxes I own and periodically make ddbr backups when I have something on the emmc that I don't want to lose.

  13. 6 minutes ago, Povl H. Pedersen said:

    Just checked dpkg log, no kernel upgrade, but linux-image-current-arm-64 is the one at fault.

    It owns /boot/dtb

    As I mentioned in your other post.  You just need to put your custom dtb in a location outside the /boot/dtb directory.  The easiest place is to put it directly in /boot and then change the uEnv.txt file to look for it there (i.e.  FDT=/meson-sm1-custom.dtb instead of FDT=/dtb/amlogic/meson-sm1-custom.dtb).  This will protect your custom dtb from future upgrades.

  14. 1 hour ago, Povl H. Pedersen said:

    reading /dtb/amlogic/meson-sm1-H96max-X3.dtb ** Unable to read file /dtb/amlogic/meson-sm1-H96max-X3.dtb **

    The kernel deb upgrade does the following:  it renames /boot/dtb to /boot/dtb.old and then installed the new set of dtbs in /boot/dtb.  Since you are using a custom dtb file, that file is now located in /boot/dtb.old and thus can't be found upon boot.

    The good news is that the box is trying to boot, it just can't find the dtb file in the location you specified.

    You should be able to create a new sd card image and boot from that.  Then while running from the sd card, mount the emmc partition containing your emmc boot directory.  Move the custom dtb file from dtb.old into the boot directory (so this doesn't happen again) and then edit the uEnv.txt on the emmc boot to reference the new location of your custom dtb file.  After you fix that up, unmount the emmc boot directory, shutdown, pop-out the sd card and boot from emmc and you should be back working again.

  15. @balbes150 I just wanted to report that with your latest builds that sound via hdmi works for all of my boxes: TX3 mini (s905w); H96 Max X2 (s905x2); and TX3 X3 (s905x3)

    I also wanted to report that I think there may be an issue with the sound not working after copying an install to emmc.   I wasn't testing sound at the time I did a reinstall into emmc, so I'm not sure it is a problem, but I am pretty sure it was working before the move to emmc and not after.

    Also, as others have reported I am seeing hangs on reboot with the latest test builds.

  16. 23 minutes ago, kalazino said:

    Which .dtb should i use?
    I managed to start the box using the meson-gxbb-vega-s95-pro.dtb file, but the Wifi doesn't work.

    The general rule around here is to try all of the dtb's and use the one that works best for you.  I would also add, that you should not expect to have working wifi or bluetooth.  If you can get the box to boot, have working ethernet, usb, and hdmi with sound you have what you should expect to work.  Anything more is a bonus.  Don't expect working wifi, bluetooth or gpu based accelerated graphics.  I have four different boxes and none of them have any of these extras working.

  17. 15 hours ago, Armin said:

    Hello Steeman,

    Any idea for a box around $25-30 to install Armbian on the eMMC.

    It is difficult to provide you any specific answer as there are too many factors that go into the answer to your question.  Price is only one factor.  Performance (CPU speed, number of cores, amount of ram, ...), working features (i.e. do you need working wifi, bluetooth, video, 1000mb ethernet, ...).  What are you planning on using the box for:  headless server, desktop, watch 1080p video, ...

    The only two factors you have listed so far are price and working emmc, but there are so many others.

    Given that there are probably a hundred different boxes out there with various combinations of all of the above factors, and I only own 4 different boxes, I have a very limited set of information to give you.  Having said that, of the boxes I own, the s905x3 2gb/16gb based TX3 can be found on aliexpress for about $25.  I own the 4gb/32gb version as I want the higher level of ram but I run the latest versions of balbes150's builds on the box in emmc.  This box does not have working wifi, bluetooth nor does it have 1000gb ethernet.

  18. 9 hours ago, mormegil said:

    I found the source of my problem! Apparently I'm not using a stock dtb and the firmware could not find it anymore since the directory has been renamed to dtb.old. I just had to copy my dtb file into the new dtb directory and my problem goes away.

    A word of advice.  Do not put your custom dtb file in the dtb directory.  Everytime the kernel is upgraded via apt, the dtb directory is moved to dtb.old and a new one corresponding to the new kernel is installed.  You should put your custom dtb file in /boot so that it isn't touched by these kernel upgrades.

  19. 2 hours ago, linsir said:

    The images file I am using is Armbian_20.02.0-rc1.037_Aml-s9xxx_bionic_current_5.5.0-rc6_desktop_202.img. I then use RUFUS / Etcher /  Win32DiskImager to burn the image to the SD card.

    In addition to what blabes150 just said, you can find the current instructions and latest builds in the first post of the below thread:


  20. 14 minutes ago, ThatUnknownGuy said:

    What am I doing wrong? I'm using the  meson-sm1-sei610-ethfix.dtb and I'm sure the env file is setup correctly.

    I really need to install into eMMC

    It is good that you have the process of restoring the factory android firmware down as you may need that a few more times as you work through this.

    It seems that you are doing things correctly, but it isn't clear from your description that you have ever tried without something going wrong and then needed to retry.  So I would recommend you go back to step one and try again.

    1) Reinstall factory android firmware

    2) Download a clean copy of the armbian build you want to install (you talk about switching between desktop and minimal so I don't know what build were have been trying)

    3) Burn the build to your sd card

    4) On the newly created sd card, edit the /boot/uEnv.txt file for the correct dtb and cpu boot (since you are using an Amlogic device, I would recommend removing the Rockchip and Allwinner sections completely)

    5) cp u-boot.sd to u-boot.ext (note copy not move, and I am assuming you are doing this because you have the green screen issue, if you don't have the green screen issue you don't need to do this step,  even if you do have the green screen issue, since you are using this as a server and likely rarely using the hdmi output directly you can also skip this step, perhaps try it both with and without this step)

    6) boot with the sd card installed via the toothpick method to install the multi-boot and boot from the sd card

    7) go through the initial root login and setup your user while booted from the sd card

    8) as root run install-aml.sh

    9) you should be installed in emmc at this point reboot

    That should work and since you are starting from a known fresh firmware and doing only the minimum steps necessary, you should be eliminating other external factors that could be causing a problem.

  21. 5 hours ago, broose said:

    I must  be missing something because I tried all the dtb files even on a box I have that is in the list and all it does is boot to the android recovery screen on all of them

    Please provide more information for us to help you.

     1) What set of instructions you are following to get this working on your box

     2) Make/Model of the Box you are trying to get working

     3) What armbian build you are using and where you downloaded it from

     4) What method you are using to create your sd card

     5) What dtb files you are trying (and why you think they are the correct ones to try)

     6) The exact uEnv.txt file (or files if you have tried multiple) you are trying (attach file to post)

     7) The method you are using to enable booting from the sd card on your box

    You probably are just missing a simple step, but it could be any number of things, and without more information it is hard for us to guess what you may be doing wrong.

  • Create New...