How to Update Firmware on Amlogic S905 TV Boxes

Videostrong has just sent me a new firmware for K1 Plus mini PC based on Amlogic S905 processor. The procedure is basically the same as for previous Amlogic devices, but I’ve still documented the step to follow an update. Please note that devices from decent brands should have OTA updates implemented, so it may not be needed, except for the cheapest devices, or in case of network issues.

The firmware update procedure below can be done in any computer, including the Android TV box itself. The firmware is specific to K1 Plus, so if you have another TV box, you’ll need to change the download link to the firmware for your device.

  1. Download the firmware file (e.g. K1 Plus 2015-11-23.rar)
  2. Extract the compressed file to the root of a micro SD card, or on any other external storage.

    You should have a few files as shown above, including a zip file (please don’t uncompress that one). The name and number of files will depend on the firmware. Note that the SD card does not need to be empty, also it might be better to check files from previous firmware updates are not located in the root of the device.
  3. If you’ve done so in another computer, connect the micro SD card or external storage (USB) to the TV box.
  4. Start the Update & Backup in the TV box
  5. If Online Update does not work, then click on Select in the app, and it will scan for .zip files on all your external drives.
    Select the zip file corresponding to the firmware you’ve just downloaded.
  6. If you want to keep your apps, settings and media files, make sure Wipe Data and Wipe Media are not checked, then click on Update.
  7. At this stage it will ask you to confirm you want to “Start the OTA update”.
  8. Click Update, and your TV box will reboot, and start the update shortly showing the Android update animation
  9. Be patient, and after a while your system will reboot, update Android app, and load the Android Home Screen. You are ready to go.

If you need to update because the system does not boot properly and can’t access the Update&Backup app, you may have to press the firmware update/recovery button before powering up the device, so that it automatically detect the firmware in the micro SD card or USB drive. You can check Amlogic S802 firmware update instructions to find out more details about that specific procedure, which should remain the same for Amlogic S905/S912.

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130 Replies to “How to Update Firmware on Amlogic S905 TV Boxes”

  1. Do you think these update apps could be used to flash linux to memory? Since they also bundle uboot and probably a linux kernel and rootfs.
    That would remain slightly dangerous since the update can go wrong and soft-brick the device…

  2. @FergusL
    Maybe. If the USB Burning Tool from Amlogic uses some bootROM inside the SoC instead of some bootloader on the flash, it should be safe, as long as you get te binary too.

    @massimo
    Nope. But I already know some won’t work, and Kodi is still WIP for S905.
    I’ll test that soon. I’m downloading some extra 10-bit h.265 samples captured from DVB-S2 streams in Europe to add to my tests.

  3. @cnxsoft
    Shame. The Beelink is annoying me the status bar wont go away in any apps, trying to watch Youtube and Twitch and the status bar is above the video.

    A lot of apps start in phone mode as well as the firmware thinks it is the phone version.

    I need a ROM that is basically Android TV.

    1. Hi
      sorry for off topic
      maybe you know any source from where you can get a stock rom for this device?
      mxq pro 4k 2/16 p212 board: HNT-mxq- s905x v1.0 170520

  4. @cnxsoft the new firmware dated 28/11 you mention above, what are the fixes? I have two of these boxes and they have a display issue on one of my tvs and I want to see if this is something that will get fixed.

  5. does this firmware fix the google store issue?
    could you provide a direct link for the recovery image if anything goes wrong?

  6. I guess that for reinstalling kodi I have to
    -root the device
    -uninstall kodi (using titanium or something similar?)
    -install kodi downloaded from kodi website

    However, I’m a bit “scared” as at the moment kodi doesn’t even appear in the playstore and installation of the apk fails…

  7. Hello, after installing the update 20151123 the homescreen of the app Netflix starts slow. It’s quit enoying. Are there others that have this problem ? Does anyone knows a solution ? Can anyone tell me why the specificaties of K1 plus say drm playready, … are optional. How to install this ?

    I found this update on the net, but didn’t installed it yet : http://blog.geekbuying.com/index.php/2015/12/04/k1-plus-amlogic-s905-4k-kodi-tv-box-firmware-20151204/

  8. @cnxsoft
    Hello again, I asked videostrong and this was the answer :

    For our products 905 k1 PLUS , Hardware is supports the DRM playready . and Amlogic S905 CPU aslo supports it .

    If you need make Playready , You need contact with Mircrosoft and buy the Playready Key first.

    What does this mean ?
    Regards

  9. @Ivan
    You need to be a company, and apply for Playready keys with Microsoft. I think you’d also need to apply for Widewine keys, unless you are happy with Level 3 (SD video) and don’t need Level 1 (HD and 4K videos).

    If you are just an individual, the price would probably be prohibitive, and the companies would not want to talk to you anyway.

  10. @cnxsoft
    @ cnxsoft
    Thank you for the reply.
    This is so weird ! They say that the device supports DRM playready … but it’s useless …
    Is there no other solution … getting other firmware on this device ?
    Thx

  11. Just got my K1 Plus today from geekbuying, I cannot update the firmware to 1204 every time I try it gives me an “Secure Check… Secure check failed. Installation aborted. OTA Failed!” when I do it through the “Update & Restore” app.
    If I update fw from the bootloader it gets past the Secure check, verifies, “patching system image unconditionally” then does force_auto_update script and then never updates my fw to 1204, the background always shows the “error” image
    got the update from http://blog.geekbuying.com/index.php/2015/12/04/k1-plus-amlogic-s905-4k-kodi-tv-box-firmware-20151204/
    cannot get it update.

  12. and what about the images provided in this article? they worked fine for me, I didn’t test the 1204 fw.
    Anyway, I cannot re-install a vanilla Kodi version, that’s the only issue I have so far

  13. @steve
    I havent actually tried the 1123 fw in this post…may as well try and see now. I didnt try before because I already have 20151123 installed when I got the K1 Plus yesterday.
    does your Build version also say:
    p20x-userdebug 5.1.1 LMY47V 20151123.183302.V1031 test-keys
    ?

  14. @Ivan
    sorry if Im being too dumb, can you post a link to where he posts the new frimwares? all I can find about videostrong is his twitter, I dont see him posting any links to a page or DL link there.

  15. Hello everyone,

    I got an OTA update for my mxq pro quick play (dated of 25 of january), but impossible to install, the box says “Your system was damaged, wireless update is disabled”. Does someone have the link of this firmware to install it manually?

    Thank you!

  16. @cnxsoft
    The problem is that I have the mxq pro “quick play” that is slightly different from this one. I have no backup or any accessible firmware that is working for sure. So I am a little scared about trying this update.
    Any idea on how to backup my rom first?

  17. @Ivan
    for me, this update is in error with the message:

    this is a package for “p20x” device: this is a “p20x ddrsize=”.

    do you know what it say ?

  18. @Florian put any word you want , then encrypte. close the encryption window. then go back with your browser, and then you can see the files.
    Told us about your flashing results

  19. I make the update , with the sd card file without problems.
    Its the Build-Number: LMY47V-2016012551551
    ROM_Version:102

  20. @atsop did you update a k1 plus box? any improvement?

    on some other posts I read about a bug concerning the volume that changes without using the remotE…same issue here

    and again ,no way to install kodi TV

  21. @steve I uptade a MXQ Pro “Quick Play”

    @hanza the device is rooted after update (MXQ Pro “Quick Play”)

  22. Hello, updated box to 01-04 firmware and have a problem: my ethernet’s MAC-adress changes randomly when device boot! how to fix it?

  23. Hi

    I got an MxQ Pro 4k Amlogic s905 box (not quickplay) and the google store not works. Say my device not compatibel with the apps? I just try to install the new firmware i downloaded from geekbuying blog with this guide, but i can’t. I got an screen after pressing update where it ask me to choice how i want to update the box. I choice EXT and SD card and the zip file, but not works. get failed massage? I also try to do it from recovery button inside the AV input, but i can’t get the update screen. The recovery button don’t works maybe? :s Can anyone help me? Pls..

    //Engin

    1. What’s the error message?

      Edit: I’ve noticed that if there are other files in the USB drive or SD card, the update may not work. It happened to me with Tronsmart Vega S95 Telos.

  24. Made it to install. It sames that the update file needs to be on the root of an SDcard. You cannot use usb devices at all.

  25. @glorifiedg
    Could You confirm that the bugs are gone?
    Can You install apps from Play store?
    Is the volume change problem gone?
    Are they updated KODI?
    Is it for the simple K1 PLUS, or for DVB type?
    Thank You in advane!

  26. I tried to use a usb stick to do this upgrade, but when it rebooted to upgrade, I got a list of “could not mount” and “failed” messages, with my only working option to reboot the device. When I did, it stuck on a black screen and won’t go past there. I’m trying the microsd method of flashing (no proper usb cable for burning tool atm), but 1. The microsd slot is really wonky and it’s almost impossible to tell if the card is being read or not and 2. I have no idea where the recovery button is, or if this device even has one. The article linked mentions it’s inside the a/v connector, but this device does not seem to have an equivalent.

  27. @cnxsoft
    Thanks so much for your help, that seems to be it. I’m still having trouble getting it to work (that sd card can move around very easily), but this should help at least if I can get a usb a-to-a cable to try the usb burning tool. Only thing that leaves me wondering if about the u_boot.bin file. Anyway, thanks again, at least I have something to work with now.

  28. @John
    Just replying to update – I’m at the point where the USB Burning Tool will recognize my device (recovery seems to work), but it won’t load any .img file – I assume the recovery.img is the correct file, but no matter what I rename it I get “Parse Burning Image Fail”.

  29. @John
    The SD card image is not the same as the USB Burning image, so you can’t use it. You need to get the USB burning tool image if you use that tool. I can’t remember if this has been released for K1 Plus.

  30. @cnxsoft
    Ah, understood. Thanks again, this is something I didn’t find in my Google searches. I’ll keep trying the SDCard method. You’ve been a great help.

  31. If You could boot to recovery, is the recovery reads the sd card? I mean if You go into the “install from EXT” menu, can You see the files on SD card? Otherwise You can’t install. If You dont know how to boot to recovery:
    Switch off the device, push the button which mentioned above and the power button together. Then You see the recovery menu. You can navigate with RC controller or USB keyboard too.
    You can install USB update from “install from EXT” udisk option.

  32. With all the help from here, I’ve managed to save my box. The device would not boot to recovery mode, and would only power on to the blue light with power connected.

    I downloaded the USB Burning Tool (found in the S802 article linked above), and found the KI Plus USB firmware here:
    http://www.acemax.net.cn/downloading-center/acemax-products-sw-downloading-center-14.html

    I created my own USB A-to-A cable from 2 old USB cables, and followed the instructions in the S802 article. My box is back to normal. Thanks for all the help!

  33. John :
    With all the help from here, I’ve managed to save my box. The device would not boot to recovery mode, and would only power on to the blue light with power connected.
    I downloaded the USB Burning Tool (found in the S802 article linked above), and found the KI Plus USB firmware here:
    http://www.acemax.net.cn/downloading-center/acemax-products-sw-downloading-center-14.html
    I created my own USB A-to-A cable from 2 old USB cables, and followed the instructions in the S802 article. My box is back to normal. Thanks for all the help!

    hello, I have the same problem as you, my box does not start, could you tell me more detail how you made the usb?

  34. Hi. I tried this step but it failed. I tried the new usb burning tool but no detected device when i connect mxq pro 4k via usb. thank you.

  35. Hello ,
    I installed the device openelec . now I can not open the recovery mode. just does not hold down the power button . How can I start the recovery menu. I want to restore the device ‘s own software.

  36. There is allready Android 6.0 on this box, see GearBest

    K1 Plus TV Box – EU PLUG BLACK 157339703 Android 6.0 Amlogic S905

  37. @Android 6.0
    I’ve asked for the firmware. Answer:

    They are make pre-advertisement , for now we released Android 6.0 on the MXQ plus model

    For K1 plus we will have soon , I send you once I get it .

  38. Hi,

    I have a MXQ pro plus. only one USB of the 4 ports works. Will this firmware upgrade fix these, sorry if its a dumb question.

    Thanks

  39. @adam
    The firmware in the post is most likely not compatible with MXQ Pro Plus.
    Your USB ports not working are probably due to a hardware issue, but I have seen at least once one box with USB problems with an early firmware. So it would not hurt to try, but you would have to find the firmware for your device. The first place to ask is your seller.

  40. What about H96 Plus devices, they are Amlogic S905 too, would the MXQ Plus firmware work for it?
    They look almost exactly the same (physical box and specs).

  41. @Zubin
    It’s been a while, but I’ve just gone through the “Secure check failed” error. The reason was the file was only partially copied to the SD card. So for others having the same issue: 1. make sure the downloaded file has the same size (or md5 is available), and the file is properly copied to the SD card or USB flash drive (check the size again after copy).

  42. I have problem this firmware.

    This package is for “mxq_plus” devices: this is a “p20x”
    E: Error in /sdcard/MXQ_PLUS-ota-20160627.181816.V0515.zip
    (Status 7)
    Installation aborted.
    E:cannot load volume /misc!

  43. So I got the H96 Plus with s905 amlogic and looks a lot like MX Pro+.
    It came somehow with a latest firmware:
    build number: p201-userdebug 5.1.1 LMY47V 20160702 test-keys

    The main menu, is the same one on MxPro+ boxes where Iron Man is touching the ground and a girl has headphones.
    It has got to be the same firmware that they are using on the MxPro+ isn’t it?

  44. I have an Mxq pro plus that randomly kicks out back to the Mbox page. Then I can’t connect to the Internet without unplugging or replugging. Any suggestions on how to solve this?

  45. Has anyone been able to root the 6.0 update? I’ve spent hrs with no luck. Any help would be great

    1. Yep that doesn’t work. I got it rooted in the end by finding a twrp recovery that works (s905_TWRP3_ViT.zip) and flashing ‘beta-superSU-v2.52.zip'(newer version don’t work). I already had SuperSU installed from playstore. Thanks for replying though. Hope this saves someone else hrs of research

  46. Hi I followed this comment thread closely for the last few days.
    I bricked my k1 plus (p20x) by flashing a rom on it. I tried the sd card (Amlogic BootCardMaker) ans USB burning tool from Acemax without success. Is my device toasted or is there something I am doing wrong?

    I see no power light like I used to when connected (blue/red) and see no Mbox or recovery menu even if I press the recovery button underneath. I think I tried all possible combination of button press, power insert sequence possible.

    I have the model without the tuner and got 2 links from videostrong (takes forever to download) for the S2 and T2 models but I don’t know if they even have the right device code in them.

    Any help will be appreciated.

  47. @Pier-Andre
    I guess you followed all the instructions and plugged the male to male usb cable at the right port. Did you check if the other usb ports provide power? Just plug a mouse or so. Just to make sure that there is no problem with the power supply at all, even though chances for this are small anyways.

  48. I just bought mxq pro 4k. Please help mr wiht this some questions
    1. Why the miracast cannot connect? The tv box detect my android but my android does not detect my tv box.
    2. The remote service does not show ip number when turn on.
    3. After standby, my wifi disconnect and when i reconnect sometimes it’s failed. I must turn off and turn off it again.
    4. How can i expand my storage to install more app
    Thanks

  49. I am deaf

    It stuck try reset button M9X TV Box Amlogic s905 Quad Core Android 5.1 Lillipop Firmware Upgrade Update…Please, Do you have a Copy Firmware Update and upgrade??

  50. I tried to flash mxq pro 4k via the Update & Backup as explained in this article; however, I encountered the following error:

    Installation aborted.
    E:Cannot load volume /misc!

    I am using an USB thumb drive, which contains the files: *.img, *.zip and *.aml.

    What could it be the problem? Any advice anyone may provide to fix the issue would be greatly appreciated.

    Note: I read that I can only flash using the burning tool method and perhaps the issue might be that I am not using that method.

    Thanks again!

  51. @Miguel
    I missed that last part of your previous comment. If you’ve download a IMG firmware which needs to be flash with USB burning tool, then it won’t work by simply copying the files to a USB flash drive.
    You need to use USB Burning Tool instead

  52. @cnxsoft
    I am not sure exactly what method to use…I was just suggesting that if the burning tool method might be the solution in this case…I don’t know as I have never done this. I have only read about it. How does one determine when to use the burning tool vs the method in this article? I just want to address the error message on my original posting. Why do I get that error? Any advise how to bypass the error I am all ears. Thank you for your response and the help.

  53. @Miguel
    Firmware distributed as a ZIP file, e.g. firmware_v1.2.zip is normally to be flashed through the UPDATE&BACKUP app.
    Firmware distributed as an IMG file, e.g. firmware_v1.2.img usually needs to be flash with USB burning tool.

  54. @cnxsoft
    It was distributed as a *.rar file and I uncompressed it so the end result was the files: *.img, *.zip and *.aml. Then I put all of these files on a USB thumb drive to flash using the BACKUP&UPDATE. Unfortunately, I got the error message as described in my original post. Any idea how to proceed? Thanks!

  55. I got h96+ 4k
    Was working fine and suddenly showed the boot screen and doesnt want to boot

    Do u have ideas and what to do??

  56. Hello i have the H96 Plus tv BoX with s905 and i search online for a frimware, i have the androit 5.1 where can i download a frimware for androit 7 or androit 6 i find nothing in internet who can help me please mail me im German

    The main menu from h96 Plus, is the same one on MxPro+ boxes where Iron Man is touching the ground and a girl has headphones.

    sorry 4 my bad english

  57. @kilicq
    You can’t find, because most likely than not, H96 Plus firmware has not been upgraded to a new version of Android. This is frequently the case in the (low cost) TV box market.

  58. @Jose
    I have the same box, did you or anyone ever find the firmware please? I am on the originally installed 5.1 and now bbc iplayer wont recognise it. I have the following box:
    BQEEL M9X Android TV Box Amlogic S905 Chipset Kodi 16.0 Full Loaded Android 5.1 Lollipop OS TV Box Quad Core 1G/8G 4K Google Streaming Media Players with WiFi HDMI DLNA
    If anyone can help point us in the right direction for firmware so I can update lollipop to marshmallow I would be very greatful.
    Thank you.

  59. hello i have tried several versions of update & backup apk it fail without any detail don you know if the sources of this updtae&backup apk is available in the open source domain to improve it in the return messages

  60. @jean marc
    Update&Backup app should be installed in your firmware. If not, then it means they may use another method to update.

    With regards to source code, I doubt it’s available, but if it is you may find it in Amlogic Android SDK (not sure where to get it without filling proper paper work with Amlogic).

  61. When trying to update FW I am getting a message:
    E: cannot load /misc!
    And the FW update is failling. Is this the reason for the failure? If yes, how to overcome? If not, how to upgrade the box?

    Thanks!

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