Pinebook Pro Debian Installer

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Information

  • This is an image creator and Debian installer that runs from an existing Linux OS and installs Debian Bullseye
    • Installer can configure an encrypted rootfs and provides a choice of desktops, including the default Debian desktop based on Gnome 3
    • Strict adoption of upstream Debian packages (with exception of kernel and bootloaders) in order to provide a clean upgrade path as Bullseye matures
  • Download at: https://github.com/daniel-thompson/pinebook-pro-debian-installer/
  • Pull requests welcome but for discussion and support please use the forum topic.

Features

Feature Status Notes
Install to micro SD card Works Automatically expands to use all available space
Install to eMMC Works Automatically adapts for 64GB and 128GB models
Full disk encryption Works Run installer with `CRYPT=yes`. Requires kernel support and this support is missing in the original factory kernel so it it not possible to install a LUKS filesystem from the factory distro. You can make a temporary unencrypted install with this installer and then use the temporary OS to perform a full encypted install.
Wifi Works Issues have been reported with WPA2 networks [1]

Current issues

Issue Category Status Workaround Notes
Firefox 'Illegal instruction' Debian issue https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=948708 Fixed in firefox-esr 68.4.2esr-1 Use a different browser while the issue is fixed or use armhf version You can use the firefox-esr 68.4.1esr-1~deb10u1 from Debian Buster, it works perfect (needs to be pinned, also needs a lib). Other browsers such as Epiphany (also has issues, white screen often, mouse movement re-displays under mouse), Konqueror and Falkon also have issues, don't work (dbind)

To use the armhf version:

$ sudo apt remove firefox-esr
$ sudo dpkg --add-architecture armhf
$ sudo apt update
$ sudo apt install firefox-esr:armhf
cdn-dp fec00000.dp: Direct firmware load for rockchip/dptx.bin failed with error -2
Debian issue https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=857054 If having FDE, it fails to load at boot as the firmware is not included in initramfs Include the dptx.bin firmware in the initramfs See https://forum.pine64.org/showthread.php?tid=8487&pid=57202#pid57202
Bluetooth doesn't work
bluetooth hci1: Direct firmware load for brcm/BCM4345C5.hcd failed with error -2
Copy those firmware https://gitlab.manjaro.org/manjaro-arm/packages/community/ap6256-firmware to /lib/firmware/brcm/. After that, Bluetooth works fine. It seems some firmware is missing. See https://forum.pine64.org/showthread.php?tid=8731&pid=57525#pid57525
Suspend doesn't work properly, when lid is closed, the laptops gets hot and dramatically dry the battery Install is preconfigured to use suspend-to-idle instead. This offers some power savings compared to normal running but suspend should only be used for short periods.
# echo deep > /sys/power/mem_sleep
PBP simply doesn't wake up after 'deep' sleep.
Often very slow to wake from suspend: 30-60 seconds. Forum thread https://forum.pine64.org/showthread.php?tid=8822 Sometimes pressing the power key helps wake it up. Set this key to not trigger sleep/shutdown in the Desktop Environment config.
Brightness keys don't work. Add this file [2] to /etc/udev/hwdb.d/, run
 sudo systemd-hwdb update
 sudo udevadm trigger
VLC crashes Use a different player, like mpv
After last software update, X.org crashes when Fn + some functional key uses. Forum thread: https://forum.pine64.org/showthread.php?tid=8915 Debian issue: https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=949980 Use Gnome or another Wayland desktop, or use Mesa packages from before Jan 24 2020 (see thread).