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This is a page about the Freescale based i.MX6; i.MX6x SABRE Lite.

Vendor Documentation

Basic Requirements

Bootloader: U-Boot

Das U-Boot – the Universal Boot Loader:
These directions going forward now assume your using the "factory" v2013.04 U-Boot. Please verify with: "version"

U-Boot > version
U-Boot 2013.04-00308-ge1290a7 (Jun 18 2013 - 13:38:20)
arm-none-linux-gnueabi-gcc (Freescale MAD -- Linaro 2011.07 -- Built at 2011/08/10 09:20) 4.6.2 20110630 (prerelease)
GNU ld (Freescale MAD -- Linaro 2011.07 -- Built at 2011/08/10 09:20)
U-Boot >

If your board has something different, take a look here: i.MX6x SABRE Lite SPI Flash Recovery for software developers, the mainline U-Boot directions are now here: i.MX6x SABRE Lite Mainline U-Boot

Linux Kernel

This script will build the kernel, modules, device tree binaries and copy them to the deploy directory.

git clone
cd armv7-multiplatform/

For v4.4.x (Longterm 4.4.x):

git checkout origin/v4.4.x -b tmp

For v4.4.x-rt (Longterm 4.4.x + Real-Time Linux):

git checkout origin/v4.4.x-rt -b tmp

For v4.9.x (Longterm 4.9.x):

git checkout origin/v4.9.x -b tmp

For v4.9.x-rt (Longterm 4.9.x + Real-Time Linux):

git checkout origin/v4.9.x-rt -b tmp

For v4.11.x (Stable):

git checkout origin/v4.11.x -b tmp

For v4.12.x (Prepatch):

git checkout origin/v4.12.x -b tmp



Root File System

Debian 9








wget -c


sha256sum debian-9.5-minimal-armhf-2018-07-30.tar.xz
9399d649d1ce9910bbfc745f59dc57ee0e1134f57e8cae01c8cd75a8bd9d1e1e  debian-9.5-minimal-armhf-2018-07-30.tar.xz


tar xf debian-9.5-minimal-armhf-2018-07-30.tar.xz

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS






wget -c


sha256sum ubuntu-18.04.1-minimal-armhf-2018-07-30.tar.xz
6b212ee7dd0d5c9c0af49c22cf78b63e6ad20cec641c303232fca9f21a18804c  ubuntu-18.04.1-minimal-armhf-2018-07-30.tar.xz


tar xf ubuntu-18.04.1-minimal-armhf-2018-07-30.tar.xz

Setup microSD card

For these instruction we are assuming, DISK=/dev/mmcblk0, lsblk is very useful for determining the device id.

export DISK=/dev/mmcblk0

Erase partition table/labels on microSD card:

sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=${DISK} bs=1M count=50

Create Partition Layout:
With util-linux v2.26, sfdisk was rewritten and is now based on libfdisk.

sudo sfdisk --version
sfdisk from util-linux 2.27.1
sfdisk >= 2.26.x
sudo sfdisk ${DISK} <<-__EOF__
sfdisk <= 2.25.x
sudo sfdisk --unit M ${DISK} <<-__EOF__

Format Partition:
With mkfs.ext4 1.43, we need to make sure metadata_csum and 64bit are disabled.
As the version of U-Boot needed for this target CAN NOT correctly handle reading files with these newer ext4 options.

mkfs.ext4 -V
sudo mkfs.ext4 -V
mke2fs 1.43-WIP (15-Mar-2016)
        Using EXT2FS Library version 1.43-WIP
mkfs.ext4 >= 1.43
for: DISK=/dev/mmcblk0
sudo mkfs.ext2 -L boot ${DISK}p1
sudo mkfs.ext4 -L rootfs -O ^metadata_csum,^64bit ${DISK}p2
for: DISK=/dev/sdX
sudo mkfs.ext2 -L boot ${DISK}1
sudo mkfs.ext4 -L rootfs -O ^metadata_csum,^64bit ${DISK}2
mkfs.ext4 <= 1.42
for: DISK=/dev/mmcblk0
sudo mkfs.ext2 -L boot ${DISK}p1
sudo mkfs.ext4 -L rootfs ${DISK}p2
for: DISK=/dev/sdX
sudo mkfs.ext2 -L boot ${DISK}1
sudo mkfs.ext4 -L rootfs ${DISK}2

Mount Partition:
On most systems these partitions may will be auto-mounted...

sudo mkdir -p /media/boot/
sudo mkdir -p /media/rootfs/
for: DISK=/dev/mmcblk0
sudo mount ${DISK}p1 /media/boot/
sudo mount ${DISK}p2 /media/rootfs/
for: DISK=/dev/sdX
sudo mount ${DISK}1 /media/boot/
sudo mount ${DISK}2 /media/rootfs/

6x_bootscript to uEnv.txt wrapper

Create wrapper script "6x_bootscript.txt" boot script: (nano 6x_bootscript.txt)

echo "6x_bootscript -> uEnv.txt wrapper..."
if test -n $disk; then
setenv mmcdev $disk
setenv mmcpart 1
load mmc ${mmcdev}:${mmcpart} ${loadaddr} uEnv.txt
env import -t ${loadaddr} ${filesize}
run uenvcmd

Using mkimage (u-boot-tools pkg) create boot script

mkimage -A arm -O linux -T script -C none -a 0 -e 0 -n "wrapper" -d ./6x_bootscript.txt ./6x_bootscript

uEnv.txt based bootscript

Create uEnv.txt boot script: (nano uEnv.txt)

mmcroot=/dev/mmcblk0p2 ro
#This gets complex when both microSD & MMC media is present at bootup:
#mmcroot=/dev/mmcblk0p2 ro
#mmcroot=/dev/mmcblk1p2 ro
mmcrootfstype=ext4 rootwait fixrtc
loadkernel=load mmc ${mmcdev}:${mmcpart} 0x12000000 zImage
loadinitrd=load mmc ${mmcdev}:${mmcpart} 0x18080000 initrd.img; setenv initrd_size 
loadfdt=load mmc ${mmcdev}:${mmcpart} 0x18000000 /dtbs/${fdtfile}
#boot_fdt=run loadkernel; run loadinitrd; run loadfdt
boot_fdt=run loadkernel; run loadfdt
mmcargs=setenv bootargs console=${console} ${optargs} root=${mmcroot} rootfstype=${mmcrootfstype} video=${video}
#uenvcmd=run boot_fdt; run mmcargs; bootz 0x12000000 0x18080000:${initrd_size} 0x18000000
uenvcmd=run boot_fdt; run mmcargs; bootz 0x12000000 - 0x18000000

Copy 6x_bootscript/uEnv.txt to the boot partition:

sudo cp -v ./6x_bootscript /media/boot/
sudo cp -v ./uEnv.txt /media/boot/

Install Kernel and Root File System

To help new users, since the kernel version can change on a daily basis. The kernel building scripts listed on this page will now give you a hint of what kernel version was built.

Script Complete [user@localhost:~$ export kernel_version=4.X.Y-Z]

Copy and paste that "export kernel_version=4.X.Y-Z" exactly as shown in your own build/desktop environment and hit enter to create an environment variable to be used later.

export kernel_version=4.X.Y-Z

Copy Root File System

sudo tar xfvp ./*-*-*-armhf-*/armhf-rootfs-*.tar -C /media/rootfs/
sudo chown root:root /media/rootfs/
sudo chmod 755 /media/rootfs/

Copy Kernel Image

Kernel Image:

sudo cp -v ./armv7-multiplatform/deploy/${kernel_version}.zImage /media/boot/zImage

Copy Kernel Device Tree Binaries

sudo mkdir -p /media/boot/dtbs/
sudo tar xfvo ./armv7-multiplatform/deploy/${kernel_version}-dtbs.tar.gz -C /media/boot/dtbs/

Copy Kernel Modules

sudo tar xfv ./armv7-multiplatform/deploy/${kernel_version}-modules.tar.gz -C /media/rootfs/

File Systems Table (/etc/fstab)

sudo sh -c "echo '/dev/mmcblk0p2  /  auto  errors=remount-ro  0  1' >> /media/rootfs/etc/fstab"
sudo sh -c "echo '/dev/mmcblk0p1  /boot/uboot  auto  defaults  0  2' >> /media/rootfs/etc/fstab"

Remove microSD/SD card

sudo umount /media/boot
sudo umount /media/rootfs

SPI Flash Recovery

i.MX6x SABRE Lite SPI Flash Recovery


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