PinePhone

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PinePhone
Manufacturer Pine64
Specifications
SoC Allwinner A64
Features

The first Pinephone (braveheart) phone

Notes

Testing images repo.

What you can do with the 20200223 image:

  • Run any applications in Debian and Devuan on your phone
  • Connect to wifi
  • Use the terminal
  • (With not yet finished userspace, terminal only) connect to 2G/3G/4G data connections

TODO mention/link to:

  • USB peripheral
  • Develop for Maemo Leste and work on applications that interface with modems
  • Make it work on latest pine64 kernel

Note that:

  • Virtual keyboard should work in all gtk2 applications (not yet in gtk3 and qt, but this is coming).
  • Default virtual keyboard is set to off. You may want to go to setting and change that first for using the terminal. Click the top left corner->"Settings"->"Text input"->check the "Use virtual keyboard" option. You may also want to change the keyboard layout by changing the dictionary setting.
  • WiFi and terminal work.
  • Some rendering bugs in portrait mode remain, so the default desktop orientation is landscape for now (xrandr -o right). Please note that if orientation is changed (e.g. with xrandr -o normal) the ui will still be reading original key positions.
  • Screen brightness adjustments in UI do not work on the Pinephone yet. There is also a user reported when "brightness" UI setting is set to minimum (no visual change normally), the screen will stay black after reboot with WiFi set to ON with kill switch. However screen is normal after reboot if WiFi set to OFF with kill switch even minimum "brightness" UI setting. You may still change the screen brightness with terminal commands: xrandr --output DSI-1 --brightness 0.5
  • Performance is not bad, but will get better, with hildon-desktop optimisations and as lima improves.
  • We are not shipping the latest Pinephone kernel yet (feel free to work on that, or anything above!)
  • Many "games" packages in the Application Manager don't work well yet.
  • For some reason the X cursor is still shows (usually it's hidden)

Status

Feature Leste supported Notes
Kernel version 5.4 Mainline + some patches: https://gitlab.com/pine64-org/linux/tree/pine64-kernel-5.4.y
Serial Yes Via headphone jack (disable headphone switch)
Charging Yes
Wireless Yes Involves installing out of tree driver
Ethernet N/A
Bluetooth  ?
Infrared N/A TX only (hardware limitation).
USB C Yes Peripheral/slave only, exposes network gadget by default. Host Untested
Keyboard N/A  !
Screen Yes Modesetting driver
3D Acceleration Yes lima (!)
Touchscreen Yes Capacitive
Audio Yes
2G/3G data WIP Works with ofono; UI underway: https://github.com/maemo-leste/connui-cellular ; see https://github.com/maemo-leste/bugtracker/issues/76
SMS WIP Works with ofono, will using telepathy-ring, no UI yet, not enabled by default
Phone calls WIP Reported to work, not enabled by default, community is quite far along, needs to work package their work
Accelerometer  ? Available as input device, needs MCE work
Proximity sensor  ?
RGB LED WIP Works, but mce can't deal with LEDs without controllers yet.
Vibration Motor  ?
GPS WIP Should work on the modem

Installation

(Work in Progress)

Currently:

  • .img.xz does not match .img.sha
  • working out how to install .tar.gz

Unlike most phones, it's pretty simple.

Download the image and the corresponding .sha file, then verify the image's integrity:

$ cat maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.img.sha
$ sha256sum maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.img.xz

or

$ cat maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.tar.gz.sha
$ sha256sum maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.tar.gz

Verify that the number that each command spits out is exactly the same number. If it is not, do not use the image. Try redownloading or ask for help.

SD Card Installation

Prepare the SD card

Format the SD card as ext4 using any of your preferred tools.

if you downloaded the .img.xz

extract the image:

$ cp maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.img.xz /path/to/sd-card
$ cd /path/to/sd-card
$ tar --extract -f maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.img.xz

dd the image to an sd card. If using a Windows machine, you can use Etcher NOTE: Etcher does not warn you before starting the flashing operation, so please be extra careful that you choose the correct device to flash to.

In a terminal window, use the command below, making sure you replace the input file if= argument with the path to your file, and the /dev/sdX in the output file of= argument with the correct device name. This is very important, as you will lose all the data on the hard drive if you provide the wrong device name. Make sure the device name is the name as described above, with no partition numbers. For example: sdd, not sdds1 or sddp1; mmcblk0, not mmcblk0p1. In most cases with SD cards, your computer might read the SD card as mmcblk0 or something similar. Don't copy and paste this command, type it out and use TAB completion.

$ dd bs=4M if=maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.img of=/dev/sdX conv=fsync

Please note that block size set to 4M will work most of the time. If not, try 1M, although this will take considerably longer. Also note that if you are not logged in as root you will need to prefix this with sudo.

if you downloaded the .tar.gz

This might work?

$ cp maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.tar.gz /path/to/sd-card 
$ cd /path/to/image/
$ tar --extract -f maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.tar.gz


Then insert SD card, replace the back cover, and turn it on.

These steps should work in theory, but at the moment the image is unbootable.

eMMC Installation

Extract the image

Download the .img.xz version of the image and extract it:

$ unxz -k maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.img.xz

Modify the image to use eMMC paths

The image, by default, points to /dev/mmcblk0 for SD cards, which must be modified to point to /dev/mmcblk2 for the eMMC. To start, determine the starting points of the image partitions:

$ fdisk -u -l maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.img.xz

In the output of this command, look for the Start column and multiply these values individually with the value given by the Units section -- this gives the offsets of the partitions from the beginning of the file.

Mount the first partition and enter it:

$ sudo mount -o loop,offset=<Partition 1 offset> maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.img /mnt
$ cd /mnt

Use the editor of your choice to edit boot.txt, replacing /dev/mmcblk0 with /dev/mmcblk2.

Regenerate boot.scr:

$ sudo mkimage -A arm -O linux -T script -C none -a 0 -e 0 -d boot.txt boot.scr

Leave the first partition and unmount it:

$ cd ~
$ sudo umount /mnt

Mount the second partition and enter it:

$ sudo mount -o loop,offset=<Partition 2 offset> maemo-leste-*-arm64-pinephone-*.img /mnt
$ cd /mnt

Use the editor of your choice to edit etc/fstab, replacing /dev/mmcblk0 with /dev/mmcblk2.

Leave the second partition and unmount it:

$ cd ~
$ sudo umount /mnt

The image is now ready to be installed to the eMMC.

Install image to eMMC

Refer to the Pine64 Wiki.