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Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 9:10 pm
by code_exec
I am happy to announce that I have managed to get Debian Stretch ARM64 running on the Raspberry Pi 3 with a custom kernel. It required me to recompile the Raspbian kernel with ARM64 support and install the kernel modules, as well as install a few other packages.

I managed to get Debian Stretch running with the XFCE desktop running Chromium and LibreOffice at acceptable speed.

Image

Pi's built-in WiFi currently not working, but Ethernet works fine. I've released a pre-release image you can find at https://github.com/CodeExecution/Debian64Pi under the releases section. This image is in testing stage and you may encounter some issues.

For those who want to build the image themselves, instructions are found at https://github.com/CodeExecution/Debian ... uctions.md

The image is a minimal installation and does not include a desktop environment, but one can be installed by following the instructions on the GitHub page. Once Debian Stretch for Pi 3 becomes stable, I will release versions that have desktop environments pre-installed (such as Debian XFCE and Debian MATE).

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Sat Dec 01, 2018 10:26 am
by code_exec
Debian Stretch using the MATE desktop. I'll be uploading an image to my GitHub repository which already has the MATE desktop preinstalled soon.

Image

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Sun Dec 02, 2018 5:38 am
by code_exec
bump

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2019 8:43 am
by jdonald
This is great. It provides a familiar environment where users can quickly test the latest Chromium, Firefox, modern databases and other software that is now unsupported on armhf.

In my opinion the number one feature missing here is a working Mesa VC4 driver. When Bamarni pi64 was released it initially didn't have accelerated graphics, but the bar is higher now with Gentoo64, Crazyhead's Raspbian64, and supposedly Fedora aarch64.

Newer versions of Chromium are needed for decent WebGL functionality, but that's no good without a driver.

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Sun Jan 20, 2019 9:31 am
by code_exec
jdonald wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 8:43 am
This is great. It provides a familiar environment where users can quickly test the latest Chromium, Firefox, modern databases and other software that is now unsupported on armhf.

In my opinion the number one feature missing here is a working Mesa VC4 driver. When Bamarni pi64 was released it initially didn't have accelerated graphics, but the bar is higher now with Gentoo64, Crazyhead's Raspbian64, and supposedly Fedora aarch64.

Newer versions of Chromium are needed for decent WebGL functionality, but that's no good without a driver.
People have tried enabling OpenGL through config.txt on my Debian images, but nothing happened. I believe this is because the OpenGL overlay is 32-bit, whereas the Debian system is 64-bit.

EDIT: This seems to be correct. The Pi 3's SoC is 64-bit, but the VideoCore IV GPU is still 32-bit. But considering distros like Fedora and Gentoo offer VC4 acceleration, I'm wondering how to get it in my Debian and Ubuntu images.

EDIT 2: What I said in Edit 1 turned out to be false. Read the reply below.

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Sun Feb 03, 2019 8:43 pm
by code_exec
Seems like what I said was false. The kernel I used in my Debian images (4.18 or 4.19, I can't remember) seems to be at fault for the overlay not working. I tried building a test Debian XFCE ARM64 image for the Pi 3 that used kernel 4.14.95 and then enabling OpenGL in config.txt and the Pi booted using the OpenGL driver.

LightDM failed and constantly flashed.
SLIM worked perfectly.
GDM3 showed a blank screen with a frozen cursor.

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Sat Feb 23, 2019 1:10 pm
by echmain
Is this project still going on?

I’d like to try 64 bit Debian Stretch on a 3B+.

My use case is a bit simpler. I will only ssh into it so I don’t need a desktop or graphics.

And it will be connected by Ethernet cable so I don’t need WiFi or Bluetooth either.

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Sun Feb 24, 2019 7:10 am
by code_exec
echmain wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 1:10 pm
Is this project still going on?

I’d like to try 64 bit Debian Stretch on a 3B+.

My use case is a bit simpler. I will only ssh into it so I don’t need a desktop or graphics.

And it will be connected by Ethernet cable so I don’t need WiFi or Bluetooth either.
Project isn't dead, I'm just working on other things right now.

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Sun Mar 24, 2019 3:15 pm
by laroche
vmdb2 from Debian can be used to build arm64 images based of standard Debian. I don't use a GUI, just standard server stuff.

I have uploaded a sample configuration to https://github.com/laroche/arm-devel-in ... db2-debian that
should be easy to use for new images. (It is basically just on yaml file with a list of packages to install and a few lines of basic
configuration.)

A ready to use image is also uploaded to https://github.com/laroche/arm-devel-in ... e/releases.

best regards,

Florian La Roche

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Tue Apr 30, 2019 11:18 pm
by concat
Code_exec, I have read your build notes on github and this thread.

Congrats, your image is the only one which boots my RPi3A+ into a graphics session w/o issues. I have trIed Fedora, Debian buster for RPi3, and several others.

So what I don’t get is what you did for kernel building? How did you build your 64bit kernel?

And are all executables 64bit for your desktop? Or are you using Multiarch?

Thanks.

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Tue Apr 30, 2019 11:21 pm
by concat
Also it looks like you are not using the VC4 driver for X? Is this true?

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Wed May 01, 2019 8:55 am
by No1be4me
Code_exec,

Thanks for the built really what I needed to build my server onto. I will like to asked how do I get WiFi to come up on the
Debian XFCE 9.6 for the Raspberry Pi 3 which I have loaded, but not seeing the WiFi symbol.

Tnx.

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Wed May 01, 2019 5:44 pm
by code_exec
Woah, this thread alive again. Just give me a minute to process all of your questions and then I'll answer them.

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Wed May 01, 2019 6:03 pm
by code_exec
Alright, so here's why this project has been so inactive over the last few months.

Recently, I got a new adapter for my Samsung Galaxy S9. It transforms the phone into a PC when connected to a TV. Unfortunately, my new Bluetooth keyboard and mouse have taken up the space on my desk for my wired ones which I use with my Pi.

These images are not built with an automated script like the Ubuntu Pi Flavour Maker images are. I create the image manually, create the partitions on the image manually, mount the partitions on the image manually, deboostrap Debian into the root partition manually, setup sources.list manually, update all the packages on the system manually, install several core packages (such as sudo and wget) manually, install the desktop environment manually, compile the kernel manually, install the kernel and its modules onto the image manually, copy the bootloader files manually, and then unmount the image manually. I then flash the image to a spare 8GB microSD card and boot it up to test it.

I'm planning on creating a script that builds the images semi-automatically. Once I have tested the script once and built a test image using it that boots successfully, I will use that for building the images. The images will come in two formats: stable (stretch) and testing (buster). When buster is released as stable and stretch becomes oldstable, I will cease development of stretch based images and will start producing buster images under the stable format and bullseye images under the testing format. And so on.

I'm going to have to use my laptop to build these images which I don't use very often anymore because of an app from Samsung called Linux on DeX allowing me to run a fully fledged Linux distro on my phone when connected to a monitor. This can help my phone act as a replacement for a laptop or desktop. I am unable to build images using this because Android's security policy prevents me from using chroot or systemd-nspawn. Even if it did allow me to use those two tools, or one of them, I can't imagine it letting me use dd to flash the image to a microSD card.

Is the project dead? No. Just inactive at the moment. However, I do have plans to revive it at some point. Just not straight away. I'm going to have to plan a more flexible way to build the images that doesn't involve doing everything manually before I start building images again.

Thanks for reading.

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Thu May 02, 2019 3:44 am
by No1be4me
Thanks for the update; would be a shame to see this amazing project go to waste, it has great potential for many of us.

Please keep us updated, and I am sure many will chip in and share their knowledge to assist if needed.

On the images on Github states the WiFi & Ethernet works out the box, but cannot get it too, plus the browser will not open. So I take it on those images these are not working.

When able can you test and see if I am wrong please.

Thanks once again for your work.

Gracias!!

Re: Debian Stretch ARM64 for Raspberry Pi 3

Posted: Thu May 02, 2019 8:04 pm
by code_exec
No1be4me wrote:
Thu May 02, 2019 3:44 am
Thanks for the update; would be a shame to see this amazing project go to waste, it has great potential for many of us.

Please keep us updated, and I am sure many will chip in and share their knowledge to assist if needed.

On the images on Github states the WiFi & Ethernet works out the box, but cannot get it too, plus the browser will not open. So I take it on those images these are not working.

When able can you test and see if I am wrong please.

Thanks once again for your work.

Gracias!!
I'm planning on refreshing the images completely, hopefully with few bugs. Last time I tried the images, WiFi worked, but this may have changed somehow. I aim to get Bluetooth working as well in the refreshed images, so stay tuned!