Building Debian ARM64


Is the kernel same in both armhf and arm64?


I don’t know. I compiled arm64, and armhf was downloaded originally. I ran apt-get upgrade linux-4.4-lastest on both side though.

On both side, apt list linux-4.4-lastest shows the same:
apt list linux-4.4-lastest
Listing… Done
linux-4.4-lastest/unknown,now 4.4.154-73 all [installed]

uname -a:
4.4.154-73-rockchip-00007-g155a65a #2 SMP Thu Feb 28 19:53:25 CST 2019 aarch64 GNU/Linux
4.4.154 #13 SMP Mon Nov 5 18:25:35 CST 2018 aarch64 GNU/Linux

cat /proc/version:
4.4.154-73-rockchip-00007-g155a65a (jenkins@mrs-ella) (gcc version 7.3.1 20180425 [linaro-7.3-2018.05 revision d29120a424ecfbc167ef90065c0eeb7f91977701] (Linaro GCC 7.3-2018.05) ) #2 SMP Thu Feb 28 19:53:25 CST 2019
4.4.154 (v@mrs-hebe) (gcc version 7.3.1 20180425 [linaro-7.3-2018.05 revision d29120a424ecfbc167ef90065c0eeb7f91977701] (Linaro GCC 7.3-2018.05) ) #13 SMP Mon Nov 5 18:25:35 CST 2018

The size of /boot/Image are different, slightly bigger on arm64.


I can confirm the refresh arm64 build out of the github repository source code, does NOT have sound.

I think the code I pulled is newer than the code built into the “official” armhf version.


OK, I got audio on ARM64!

I copied rockpi-4b-linux.dtb from armhf side to arm64 side, I got audio, and GPU accelerated video is still working!

Decompiled the 2 dtbs, compared them side by side, there are some suspicious differences, but nothing explicitly says “audio”. If I have time, I will flip them one at a time could find it out, but I have more stuff to do so I’ll move on to the next page.

Debian arm64 that is it, latest Chromium, smooth YouTube with audio.


Congratulations! Maybe share the image? :slight_smile:


I’ll make a clean image and share on github.


Any update on your new image?


I’m working on it. I had been busy on building OpenHab2, too many issues (not on the RockPi’s part).


Nice! I just got my rockpi4b today, looking forward to running that.


I’m very much interested in your image being available.


I have my Debian ARM64 image ready (1.2GB after compression), it’s too big for github (they have 25MB size limit), would you provide some space for sharing? Thanks

SUMMARY: Debian-ARM64 for RockPi4

This is a Debian ARM64 build using the source code from Radxa (the manufacturer)'s repository (, with extra customized features and tunings.

Installed Packages after Build:

  • auto-config
  • automake
  • make
  • cmake
  • xmms2
  • openssh-server (re-installed)
  • rsync
  • libmraa (build using the source code from
  • gnome-screenshot


  • SourceCodePro (Powerline fonts)
  • Dejavu (Powerline fonts)
  • fonts-noto (Google “no tofu” fonts)
  • fonts-noto-cjk (Google “no tofu” fonts)



  • Enabled ttyS2 on GPIO pin 8/10 for HATs
  • Chromium GPU acceleration flags.
  • “Open Folder as Root” context menu in File Manager

Known Issues:

  • The libmraa from Radxa apt repository is not compatible with Debian ARM64, the upgrade should be set on hold:
    sudo apt-mark hold libmraa-rockpi4(This is fixed on Mar 31, no longer need to put the upgrade on hold)
  • The root partition of the image is 3.0GB, you may need to increase the partition on your microSD card/eMMC
  • Onboard Bluetooth is not working.


Excellent work! I can’t wait to try your image out.
You may be able to host it on one of the free file hosting sites like megaupload) I think they allow up to 50GB free storage. But I’ve only downloaded from there never uploaded myself.


Push this image to the repo’s Releases section. Large files are allowed there.


Thanks, I just uploaded. I’m posting the URL on the top


Great work man. I’m downloading it now. Going to see if i can build Python 3.7 on it once i get it properly installed.


Thanks for your great work. We appreciate it. Let’s PIN it!

pinned #26


OMG! This is HUGE!! Great job,@O635789. Radxa owes you a big party… with champagne…and dancing girls… lots of dancing girls!
How about it, @jack? Don’t you agree?


Yeah, definitely.



When I use Etcher to put the image on a Micro SD card it doesn’t work. It’s as if the card gets corrupted and I have to re-format it. I can use the same card with other images and it works so I know it’s not the card. Am I doing something wrong?