VIM3 Armbian image?

I see Tommy21 has made progress on that, but for the record if it’s useful for other people: I had tons of problems in my Edge-V that wouldn’t boot Khadas firmwares or balbes Armbian with the proposed env flags. All those were fixed erasing the whole EEMC and installing again the firmware (using Windows with khadas provided tool, not Linux burner)

I have finally managed to boot it up, i am using latest 20.03. image, there is no wifi on it?

Now you need to configure the DTB correctly. Edit the file (uEnv.txt). You can only leave these lines.

APPEND=root=LABEL=ROOTFS rootflags=data=writeback rw console=ttyAML0,115200n8 console=tty0 no_console_suspend consoleblank=0 fsck.fix=yes net.ifnames=0

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Before I spend too much time going down another rabbit hole. How does one build an Armbian image for the VIM3l? Is there a special target in the Armbian builder? I need to at least be able to build a custom kernel, and would prefer to make a custom image as well, as I do currently for half a dozen other SBCs supported by Armbian.

Step 1: Activate universal multiload. The only instructions I find are:

option A

  • Connect the prepared media to the device and turn on the power, boot into Android
    What “prepared media”? The Armbian sdcard?
  • Open the app “Update&Backup”
    I installed what I think is Android for the VIM, but I don’t see any “Update&Backup” app
  • Click on “Select” local update and chose the file on the removable media
    Where does this zip file come from?
  • Start “Update”
  • System will reboot twice and start running the system from external media.

option B

  • try using the “toothpick method”
    *What the %^@$ is the “toothpick method”?


Look under Settings/Device options/About. Update app is there. Chose Local update.

Yes, the zip file is on the SD card, the app will find zip named, “”

This does not apply to the VIM3. Instead use this method…
With the VIM3 powered down but powered, press and hold the power button, while holding the power button, briefly press the reset button, continue to hold power button 5 seconds and release.

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I do have it running now. I found some older instructions that got me headed in the right direction: Armbian + KODI (Ubuntu\Debian) for SD & USB & eMMC

I now have it running off of sdcard. I’m not sure yet if/how I can install to EMMC.

Now I’m back to the question of how to build at least the kernel. I tried adding a driver using dkms, and it can’t find the kernel headers, and I don’t see a package with the appropriate kernel version.

Edit: I think I found how to build the kernel here:

I have everything working great running off sdcard. Is it possible to transfer what I have to emmc and/or nvme? I see there are scripts in the /root directory, but I tried running the script, and that didn’t work.

The script complained about not having room to copy the kernel, which doesn’t seem ideal. I could probably figure that out, but I think it may have messed up u-boot as well, since I now have a cyan background on the console, and I don’t fully understand all the issues with u-boot.

Do you have a model with an s905 chip ? The script is used for s905x\s912\s922 (

I have a VIM3L, so I believe I do have a s905 chip. I tried running the, and that seemed to work, but I’ve been unable to boot from either EMMC or scdard.

I even re-installed android and re-ran the script after stumbling through figuring out how to get it to boot from sdcard again. It did boot from sdcard, although the screen was blank.

After running the script it will no longer boot from either EMMC or sdcard. It just seem to be waking up the screen every few seconds like it’s in a boot loop.

Is there some documentation about installing Armbian on this board for the complete dummy? Not that I’m a dummy. I have an MS in EE, and a couple dozen different SBCs that mostly run Armbian, but this one is by far the most complex and worst documented.

Why won’t you let this image be installed by @hyphop krescue? That seems to be the only installation method that actually works, and if that would work it would eliminate all the issues that people seem to be having installing this.

I have two of these boards, and they seem like very good hardware, but I’m just about to throw them in the trash because I’ve spent so much time trying to find an OS that actually works. Your Armbian install seems to be very good (as is generally the case with Armbian in my experience), but it’s not usable if it can’t be installed.

This is the s905d3 chip, this is a completely different option, not compatible with s905.

Which version exactly do you use ? What tool was used to perform the installation ?

I don’t need any more trouble. At this link, you can see some of the problems that kreskue brings. It describes the simplest problems, but krescue also brings serious security problems and other side effects that make such an installation unacceptable.

I don’t have VIM3L and I don’t support this model. So with this model, I can only help you with General recommendations. For reference, Armbian installs perfectly and works from eMMC on VIM1 VIM2 VIM3 EDGE EDGE-V. If you want to install Armbian in eMMC, I will need a log from the UART console to find an error in the regular firmware in eMMC. Important. For the system to work correctly in eMMC, there should be no extraneous (hidden) elements, this is only possible when restoring the firmware via the regular USB Burn Tool, any other tools not guarantee the correct installation of the firmware in eMMC.

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sound configuration totally broken :wink: spdif not work, i2s same not works
kernel sometimes have segfaults after manipulation with hdmi sound mixer, pulseaudio cannot work (only dummy sound card) without special changes !
but armbian works fine :slight_smile:

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Do not mislead people! all manjaro-krescue presented images always was marked by test tag it means this one only for demo test !

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Well, that’s not so obvious…

I’ll try to get a boot log, but if you don’t support the VIM3L, I don’t see why you don’t let @hyphop support it. I don’t know all the politics behind this, but krescue is documented in the " VIM3 Beginners Guide", so I can’t believe it’s too bad. Even if it’s broken at times, condensing down a bunch of steps that are documented across multiple forum posts into a “click and install” seems like a win from a support perspective.

From an engineers perspective I appreciate trying to build a generic framework that works on multiple architectures, but the existing Armbian model of “find image for your SBC and burn it” works very well.

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Plz don’t trust some forum users :wink:

U can try and test how works krescue by you self
And install many different os
Its really easy and fast

Armbian not shared at this time because armbian have some trouble’s

I have prepare armbian for vim3l and other VIMS boards and still in test but already usable

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So far, Armbian has been the most stable for me. I’ve been running it for a while off sdcard, and it has worked very well.

The fenix-based distros seem to have issues with standard wifi drivers, at least the ones that I need, but that’s not the case with Armbian.

I come here asking some people for a little more respect with the developers. (people who take the time to help).

I have known the work of the balbes150 for many years, he has always dedicated his time to helping and providing the best for the users of his images (he has done an excellent job where many take advantage).

No matter what country we live in, today we really need each other because we are not only losing “numbers” to the Covid-19 virus, but losing our friends. Why insult?

I ask some developers and others here to stay in their spaces. (here in this house balbes are always judged and never praised).

@balbes150 makes a decision about this behavior and leaves the forum, I do not understand why the moderators allow insults without warning / prohibition. @Gouwa

Some people here didn’t buy Khadas vim3 waiting for @balbes150 and @chewitt in short, libreelec team finishes its work, so here is the tip for those who think they are important!
If anyone here didn’t like what was said by me do a better job than balbes150.


please freeze and close this discussion, and let’s focus on something more positive, another distro on another board for example…


I have found balbes150 to be universally arrogant and unhelpful.
And why wait for two years for a developer to get his shit together when there are perfectly adequate and functional alternatives which work since day one ?


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