Creating and Flashing an Android Image from Rockchip RK3288 SDK

Following up on my post explaining how to build Android for RK3288 TV box, I’ve generated a firmware image, and flashed it to Tronsmart Orion R28 Meta TV box to see if it could boot properly. There’s basically no information in the Andoird SDK explaining how to do basic things like building from source, and generating and flashing the resulting image, so I’d like to thanks Linuxium, Droidmote and Naobsd for their various tips.

Launcher Part of Android SDK for RK3288 (Click for Original Size)
Launcher Part of Android SDK for RK3288 (Click for Original Size)

Since I’ve built everything from source, I’m using a Linux machine, but you should be able to create and flash the Android image in Windows using tools in RKTools/windows folder.

First let’s copy the required, and freshly built, files to create the firmware:


We’ll also need to edit package-file follows (I only had to change the bootloader field):


And now create the firmware file:


The firmware file update.img can be flashed with upgrade_tool in Linux, or AndroidTool in Windows. Orion R28 also supports updates from SD card, but I don’t know how to generate such images (yet).

First you need to enter recovery mode. Connect the USB OTG port of your device to your PC, insert a toothpick in the AV port of your device to press the recovery push button (location of recovery button will differ between products), turn on the device, and release the button after a few seconds.

The first time I used upgrade_tool, I got the error “Creating Comm Object failed!”,  changing udev rules in Ubuntu will fix the issue (Source Radxa website):


Finally flash the firmware:


Orion_R28_106k8Now cross your fingers, and restart your TV box: Google TV logo… Android animation… and after asking a few questions about Google Play, the system asks you which launcher you want to select: stock Android, or a custom launcher as shown in the top of this post. That means it works! Great!

Unfortunately, I quickly realized Ethernet does not work, as the MAC Address is 00:00:00:00:00:00, and the firmware version of the SDK (106k4) does not match with the firmware version originally flashed into Orion R28 Meta (108k4), and they’ve now updated it to 109k4. Wi-Fi did work fine however, I could login to Google Play, and install ES File Explorer. XBMC 13.1 Gotham is also part of that firmware, but won’t work that well based on testing from other RK3288 TV boxes.

I had initially planned to test Tronsmart Orion R28 Meta with the firmware built from the SDK, but unfortunately the SDK and actual released firmware are out of sync, which means the SDK is not really useful, and I don’t think the manufacturers are interested in released up-to-date source code. So instead I’ll do some hardware testing using the provided firmware.

If you want to play around Rockchip RK3288, including testing Ubuntu on your device, you may want to checkout Firefly-RK3288 Wiki, now updated with English instructions partially inspired from Radxa and Androtab websites.

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