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The Linaro Qualcomm Landing Team is pleased to announce the new release of the Linaro OpenEmbedded RPB release for Qualcomm™ Robotics RB5 platform. The Linaro OpenEmbedded RPB release 20.10 is based on OpenEmbedded and provides developers with a reference set of images including Xorg, Wayland/Weston as well as console only configurations.

What’s new in this release

This is the first release for RB5 platform.

Important note(s) about this release



The Linaro OpenEmbedde RPB version 20.10 for the Robotics RB5 platform supports the following features:

  • It is based on the OpenEmbedded / Yocto Project release 3.1.2 (aka dunfell).
  • It is based on Linux kernel 5.9-rc8.
  • It is based on proprietary firmware pre-flashed by the board manufacturer, Thundercomm. Updated firmware is not yet released.
  • The following reference images are released:
    • boot image that includes prebuilt kernel and initrd
    • rpb-console-image image that includes core packages as well as typical development packages (headless)
  • All images are configured with a password less root account.
  • All images exist in two variants. The regular image, and a -test image , which includes additional packages typically useful for test and validation.
  • The root file system should be flashed in the onboard UFS.
  • The following features are supported on the Robotics RB5 platform:
    • QRB5165 8x Kryo 585 CPU, up to 2.84 GHz (with cpufreq support)
    • PSCI with support for cpuidle, SMP, hotplug and restart.
    • TSENS and thermal management
    • HDMI display
    • Storage: Onboard UFS and SD card
    • USB 3.0 (Mouse, Keyboard, Storage, Ethernet)
    • I2C, SPI, UART and GPIO from the LS1, LS1 and LS2 expansion connectors
    • PRNG

Information about the Robotics RB5

For more information about the DragonBoard 845c, please check the following website and wiki:

How to install and use this release

Download and preparation

Before starting download necessary files. This should include:

  • boot image: boot-qrb5165-rb5.img
  • One of rootfs images:
    • rpb-console-image-qrb5165-rb5.rootfs.ext4.gz
    • rpb-console-image-test-qrb5165-rb5.rootfs.ext4.gz

Gunzip downloaded files.

Make sure that you have fastboot tool installed. It can be either a part of “android-tools” package (Fedora, old Debian/Ubuntu) or a separate package (“android-tools-fastboot” or just “fastboot”, contemporary Debian/Ubuntu).

Connect host computer to RB5. It must be powered off (unplugged from power)
BOOT_CONFIG DIP switch on RB5 must be set to ‘0-0-0-0’. All switches should be in “off” position

Boot RB5 into fastboot mode.
  • Hold down the “VOL-” button when connecting power supply.
  • Tap the “ON/OFF” button while continuing to hold the “VOL-“ button for ~5 seconds after the blue LED lights up.
  • Release “VOL-“ button
  • Connect the USB3 Type C (5) between the Linux PC and the board

Board should boot into fastboot mode.

Check to make sure device is connected and in fastboot mode

$ sudo fastboot devices

Typically it will show as below

de82318	fastboot

Proprietary firmware

This release does not contain proprietary firmware. It uses firmware provided by the board manufacturer. Updating firmare is not yet supported. Please be sure to use latest firmware provided by Thundercomm.

Linaro OpenEmbedded RPB

Linaro OpenEmbedded Reference Platform Build (RPB) is a reference implementation of an OpenEmbedded based distribution developed by Linaro. It provides examples and guidelines for users to create their own distribution based on OpenEmbedded. The reference images included in this release can be used to demonstrate and validate any of the use case that the Robotics RB5 can support. The current release is based on the OpenEmbedded Core dunfell release branch.

The following reference distributions are provided by the Linaro OpenEmbedded RPB project:

  • rpb is a reference OE distro that is based on Xorg graphics stack

For more information about Linaro OpenEmbedded RPB, please check this document.

Flashing the prebuilt images

To flash the boot image, from the host PC, run the following command:

fastboot flash boot <boot image file>

To flash the root file system image, download the image file with the extension .img.gz and run:

$ gunzip rpb-XXX-image.rootfs.img.gz
$ fastboot flash userdata rpb-XXX-image.rootfs.img

substituting XXX with the type of the image you have selected.

Running the rpb-console-image

If you have flashed the console image, when booting the board you will end up in a login prompt on the serial console. If you have an HDMI monitor connected, you will also have login terminals on the display.

Building from sources

The boot image and the root file system are completely built from sources, using OpenEmbedded build system. It is recommended to setup the build environment using the following instructions. For Qualcomm Robotics RB5 platform qrb5165-rb5 is to be used as MACHINE. For example you can use following commands:

$ MACHINE=qrb5165-rb5 DISTRO=rpb . setup-environment
$ bitbake rpb-console-image

For more information about OpenEmbedded and the Yocto project please refer to the Yocto Project Documentation.

How to get and customize the kernel source code

To rebuild the kernel you can use the OpenEmbedded workflow and update the kernel recipe, located in the build environment in ./layers/meta-qcom/recipes-kernel/linux/ To rebuild a boot image that includes your kernel changes, you can run the following bitbake command:

$ bitbake virtual/kernel

Assuming the build went fine, the new boot image will be located in the build folder, as tmp-rpb-glibc/deploy/images/qrb5165-rb5/boot-qrb5165-rb5.img. You can run the following fastboot command to boot it on the board:

$ fastboot boot boot-qrb5165-rb5.img

If you want to permanently use a custom kernel image, you can update the boot image and reflash it into the boot partition:

$ fastboot flash boot boot-qrb5165-rb5.img

Feedback and Support

For general question or support request, please go to Community forum.

For any bug related to this release, please submit issues to the Bug tracking system. To submit a bug, follow this link.

Bugs will be reviewed and prioritized by the team. For any bug report it is recommended to provide as much information as possible, and at the very list please include the name of the release you are using as well as the boot log (output of dmesg).

How to contribute

We very much encourage developers to use and contribute to our releases, using the following instructions.

Qualcomm Snapdragon and Qualcomm Robotics RB5 are products of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.