Rock 5B, no NVME boot with Ubuntu despite updating SPI

Hello, I’m trying to configure my Rock 5B V1.42 to run as fast as possible.
I flashed the official Radxa linux image to SD using Balena Etcher (I used a good quality, brand new 16GB card) and it works but speed is poor (as in, it takes literally 9 seconds to bring up the system menu when I click on the icon, and everything feels super sluggish and unusable). So I decided to switch to nvme. I bought a 128GB one and flashed the official image on it.
I also updated the SPI to the latest version (20230607) following the official instructions, and that worked flawlessly. Now the Rock boots from nvme and the speed improvement is unbelievable.
But I’m much more used to standard Ubuntu, so I flashed the third-party Ubuntu image to the nvme; I checked with kparted and the partitioning is correct and the filesystem is clean (it just needs to be inflated) but it just doesn’t boot. Is that image just not compatible with nvme, or did I do something wrong? What can I try?


You need to flash the SPI image that is included with the Ubuntu you are using to boot from NVME.

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Thank you, but I’m not sure where to find it… I got it from this page:
And I can’t seem to find a SPI image there…

Copying a message from Joshua on Discord:

“There could be mismatching SPL and DDR blobs. Please boot Ubuntu from an SD card and enter the command sudo u-boot-install-mtd /dev/mtdblock0. Then the system will be able to boot from an nvme drive.”

Thanks, that did the trick!