Linux Host

This section show how to install a new operating system to your DragonBoard™ 845c using the fastboot method on a Linux host computer.


  • Step 1: Make sure fastboot is set up on host computer
  • Step 2: Connect host computer to RB3
  • Step 3: Boot DragonBoard 410c into fastboot mode
  • Step 4: Flash Bootloader
  • Step 5: Recall location of all downloaded files
  • Step 6: Unzip all files
  • Step 7: Flash all files to the RB3
  • Step 8: Reboot RB3

Step 1: Make sure fastboot is set up on host computer.

You can install fastboot from source or using your distro package manager.
  • From source:
    • Android SDK “Tools only” for Linux can be downloaded here
    • The Linux “Tools Only” SDK download does not come with fastboot, you will need to use the Android SDK Manager to install platform-tools.
    • To do this follow the “SDK Readme.txt” instructions included in your SDK “Tools Only” download.

    If you are still having trouble setting up fastboot, click here for a short tutorial video

  • Or using a distro package manager:
    # Red Hat flavour (Fedora, CentOS)
    $ sudo yum install android-tools
    
    # Debian (Ubuntu)
    $ sudo apt-get install android-tools
    
    # Ubuntu 16.04 (Xenial) and beyond
    $ sudo apt-get install android-tools-fastboot
    

Step 2: Connect host computer to DragonBoard 410c

  • RB3 must be powered off (unplugged from power)
  • S6 switch on RB3 must be set to ‘0-0-0-0’. All switches should be in “off” position

Step 3: Boot RB3 into fastboot mode

Please read all bullet points before attempting

  • Press and hold the Vol (-) button on the RB3, it should still NOT be powered on and the type-c cable removed.
  • While holding the Vol (-) button, power on the RB3 by plugging it in
  • Once RB3 is plugged into power, release your hold on the Vol (-) button.
  • Wait for about 20 seconds.
  • Plug in the Type-C cable.
  • Board should boot into fastboot mode.

From the connected host machine terminal window, run the following commands:

# Check to make sure device is connected and in fastboot mode

$ sudo fastboot devices

Typically it will show as below

de82318	fastboot

Step 4: Flash Bootloader

  • Use host computer
  • Download Linux Bootloader from the Downloads Page.
  • Open “Terminal” application
  • Recall location of Bootloader download.
  • The bootloader file should be named dragonboard-845c-bootloader-ufs-Y-XX
  • Y represents Android or Linux
  • XX represents the release number of the Bootloader
  • cd to the directory with your unzipped Bootloader Folder
$ cd <extraction directory>

#Example:
cd /Users/YourUserName/Downloads
#<extraction directory> = /Users/YourUserName/Downloads
#For this example we assume the "Bootloader" is in the Downloads folder.


$ cd <unzipped Bootloader folder>

#Example:
cd dragonboard-845c-bootloader-ufs-linux-14
#<unzipped Bootloader folder> = dragonboard-845c-bootloader-ufs-linux-14
#This example took place during release 14

# This command will execute the flashall script within the bootloader folder
$ sudo ./flashall

The bootloader has now been flashed to the UFS. Rebooting will launch the newly-flashed boot loader, which will allow us to flash the remaining parts of the operating system.

# Reboot the system so we can flash the rest.
$ sudo fastboot reboot

Step 5: Recall location of all downloaded files

Recall location of all downloaded files from the downloads page, files will be different for Android and Linaro/Debian:

Linaro/Debian: Recall location of boot and rootfs downloaded from the downloads page
  • You should have downloaded the boot file
  • You should have downloaded ONE of rootfs file (Either Developer or Desktop - ALIP` version)
Android: Recall location of boot.img.tar.xz, system.img.tar.xz, userdata.img.tar.xz, recovery.img.tar.xz, persist.img.tar.xz, cache.img.tar.xz, downloaded from the downloads page
  • All of these files should have been downloaded from the downloads page

Step 6: Unzip required files

For Debian
$ gunzip boot-*.img.gz
$ gunzip linaro-*.img.gz
For Android
$ tar -xvf boot.img.tar.xz
$ tar -xvf system.img.tar.xz
$ tar -xvf userdata.img.tar.xz
$ tar -xvf recovery.img.tar.xz
$ tar -xvf persist.img.tar.xz
$ tar -xvf cache.img.tar.xz

Step 7: Flash all images to the RB3

  • Use host computer
  • Use “Terminal” application
  • Recall location of extracted(unzipped) files
  • cd to the directory with your unzipped files
  • From within extraction directory, execute the following commands:
Linaro/Debian:
# (Once again) Check to make sure fastboot device connected
$ sudo fastboot devices
# It will show similar to below if the device is connected successfully
de82318	fastboot

# cd to the directory the boot image and  were extracted
$ cd <extraction directory>

# Make sure you have properly unzipped the boot and rootfs downloads
$ sudo fastboot flash boot boot-linaro-buster-dragonboard-845c-**BUILD#**.img
$ sudo fastboot flash rootfs linaro-buster-developer-dragonboard-845c-**BUILD#**.img

Note: Replace BUILD# in the above commands with the file-specific date/build stamp.

Android:
# (Once again) Check to make sure fastboot device connected
$ sudo fastboot devices
# It will show similar to bellow if the device is connected successfully
de82318	fastboot

# cd to the directory with extracted images
$ cd <extraction directory>

# Make sure you have properly unzipped the downloads
$ sudo fastboot flash boot boot.img
$ sudo fastboot flash system system.img
$ sudo fastboot flash userdata userdata.img
$ sudo fastboot flash recovery recovery.img
$ sudo fastboot flash persist persist.img
$ sudo fastboot flash cache cache.img

Step 8: Reboot RB3

  • Unplug power to RB3
  • Ensure HDMI connection to monitor
  • Ensure keyboard and/or mouse connection (Depending on your rootfs selection)
  • Plug power back into RB3
  • Wait for board to boot up
  • Board will boot into either command line or desktop depending on rootfs

Note: For Linaro/Debian the username and password are both “linaro” when the login information is requested.

Congratulations! You are now booting your newly installed OS directly from UFS on the RB3!