How to use Radxa Official Ubuntu | Ubuntu server For ROCKchip | ROCK 5 Ubuntu

How to use Radxa Official Ubuntu | Ubuntu server For ROCKchip | ROCK 5 Ubuntu

16 August 2023 0 By Harshvardhan Mishra

Introduction of Rock 5 Ubuntu

This project aims to give Rockchip RK3588 devices a stock Ubuntu 22.04 experience. Use an Ubuntu Server or Desktop image to get started right away in a comfortable setting. This OS  especially developed for ROCK 5 SBCs.

ROCK 5 Ubuntu server is an easy to use system. While working with ROCK 5 Ubuntu Server, you will find it do well on playing music, Internet, BT, AI and so on.

ROCK 5 Ubuntu server uses systemd to manage system.

Command prepended by $ means the command may be executed by an unprivileged user. And command prepended by # means the command may be executed by an privileged user. But the symbol, $ or #, is not part of the command.

This Project is available on GitHub :


  • Package management via apt using the official Ubuntu repositories
  • Receive kernel, firmware, and bootloader updates through apt
  • Desktop first-run wizard for user setup and configuration
  • 3D video hardware acceleration support via panfork
  • Fully working GNOME desktop using wayland
  • Chromium browser with smooth 4k youtube video playback
  • MPV video player capable of smooth 4k video playback
  • Gstreamer can be used as an alternative 4k video player from the command line
  • 5.10.160 Linux kernel

Supported Boards

How to use Ubuntu in ROCK 5B SBC

Access from the Host PC/Laptop

Option 1: HDMI monitor and Mouse : You would see Desktop on HDMI monitor.

Option 2: Serial console:  See Serial Console

Option 3: SSH

SSH server is enabled on port 22 of ROCK 5 default image.

Please use angryip to find your board IP address.

$ ping ip-of-device
$ ssh rock@ip-of-device

Default User Account

Non-root User:

User Name : rock
Password  : rock

Root mode

rock is sudo user and switch to root can be done with the following command as user rock:

sudo su

For example:

rock@rock-5b:~$ sudo su
[sudo] password for rock: 

There is no password for root user by default. You can set the password via ‘passwd root’.

root@rock-5b:/home/rock# passwd root
New password: 
Retype new password: 
passwd: password updated successfully

Partition table

Part Number Offset Name Description
(raw) 32KB loader1 First stage loader
(raw) 8MB loader2 U-boot image
1 16MB boot Kernel partition, bootable
2 528MB rootfs Rootfs

Offset when writing using dd

dd if=idbloader.img   of=/dev/sdx seek=64
dd if=u-boot.itb      of=/dev/sdx seek=16384 
dd if=boot.img        of=/dev/sdx seek=32768 
dd if=rootfs.img      of=/dev/sdx seek=1081344

Radxa APT

Radxa APT source includes stable one and testing one. Stable source includes stable packages while testing source includes latest but maybe unstable packages.

Radxa APT stable source is added by default while testing source is not added.

You can uncomment line like “deb buster main” in file /etc/apt/sources.list.d/apt-radxa-com.list to add testing source.

See file /etc/apt/sources.list.d/apt-radxa-com.list

deb focal main
deb focal main

After adding testing source, you need to update APT and install your needed packages.

$ sudo apt-get update

For more detail about Radxa APT, please see Radxa APT.

Upgrade necessary packages

Here is the example of upgrading rockchip-overlay and kernel packages.

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install -y rockchip-overlay


On the rock5, one LED is configured as LED class device.

You can control it via /sys/class/leds/

The default status of the three on board led is flash

root@rock-5b:/home/rock# echo none > /sys/class/leds/sta/trigger
root@rock-5b:/home/rock# echo activity > /sys/class/leds/sta/trigger
root@rock-5b:/home/rock# echo timer > /sys/class/leds/sta/trigger

You can use cat on the trigger property to list all the available values.

root@rock-5b:/home/rock# cat /sys/class/leds/sta/trigger 
none rfkill-any rfkill-none kbd-scrolllock kbd-numlock kbd-capslock kbd-kanalock kbd-shiftlock kbd-altgrlock kbd-ctrllock kbd-altlock kbd-shiftllock kbd-shiftrlock kbd-ctrlllock kbd-ctrlrlock tcpm-source-psy-4-0022-online timer oneshot disk-activity disk-read disk-write ide-disk mtd nand-disk heartbeat backlight gpio cpu cpu0 cpu1 cpu2 cpu3 cpu4 cpu5 cpu6 cpu7 mmc0 mmc2 activity [default- 
on] transient flash torch panic netdev

Test RTC Device

ROCK 5B is equipped with one RTC IC hym8563.

Firstly, plug in RTC battery to give power to RTC IC. Please note that we should keep the RTC battery in the RTC connector.

Plug in power adaper to power on ROCK 5B.

And confirm that the rtc hym8563 device is created.

root@rock-5b:/home/rock#  dmesg | grep rtc
[    6.407133] rtc-hym8563 6-0051: rtc information is valid
[    6.412731] rtc-hym8563 6-0051: registered as rtc0
[    6.413779] rtc-hym8563 6-0051: setting system clock to 2022-06-22T01:22:26 UTC (1655860946)

Secondly, use the following commands to set the system time and synchronize it to rtc0.

root@rock-5b:/home/rock# hwclock -r
2021-06-12 08:10:02.613381+08:00
root@rock-5b:/home/rock# date
Wed Jun 22 10:06:10 CST 2022
root@rock-5b:/home/rock# hwclock -w
root@rock-5b:/home/rock# hwclock -r 
root@rock-5b:/home/rock# poweroff

take the RTC battery off,after 10minute or longer,insert the rtc battery and power on rock5b,check whether the RTC is synchronized with the system clock

root@rock-5b:/home/rock# hwclock -r
2022-06-22 10:09:59.214788+08:00
root@rock-5b:/home/rock# date
Wed Jun 22 10:17:01 CST 2022


There is one PWM Fan connector on ROCK 5B.

Execute shell script to turn on fan.


The content of script is

# cat usr/local/bin/ 
echo "Trun on Fan"
echo 0 > /sys/devices/platform/fd8b0010.pwm/pwm/pwmchip*/export 
echo 10000 > /sys/devices/platform/fd8b0010.pwm/pwm/pwmchip*/pwm0/period 
echo 5000 > /sys/devices/platform/fd8b0010.pwm/pwm/pwmchip*/pwm0/duty_cycle 
echo normal > /sys/devices/platform/fd8b0010.pwm/pwm/pwmchip*/pwm0/polarity 
echo 1 > /sys/devices/platform/fd8b0010.pwm/pwm/pwmchip*/pwm0/enable 
#echo 0 > /sys/devices/platform/fd8b0010.pwm/pwm/pwmchip*/pwm0/enable 

5B Ethernet

ROCK 5B is equipped with one 2.5G Ethernet port. You can use a network cable (one end connected to the external network port or route) to connect your ROCK 5B to the network. The ROCK 5B will automatically configure the network for your surfing on the Internet.

Ethernet throughput test result table.

Direction Bitrate
Upstream 2.34 Gbits/sec
Downstream 2.35 Gbits/sec
To test the Ethernet, we need to follow the steps:
  • Switch to super user mode by command
$ sudo su
  • Check whether the Ethernet is normal by command, ifconfig, which would show us a network card, eth0 or enP4p65s0 , and the Ethernet IP address. Also, use tool, ping, to connect to a normal domain.
$ ifconfig
$ ping
  • If failed to connect to a normal domain. , try
$ sudo dhclient eth0
$ sudo dhclient enP4p65s0

Storage device

  • uSD Card: /dev/mmcblk0
  • eMMC: /dev/mmcblk1
  • NVME M.2 SDD: /dev/nvme0n1