[BPI-R2] Banana Pi R2 - newer OS (ubuntu) and run from emmc

Hi, I find old banana pi r2 board. I would like to use it. Unfortunately, many of the sources for the software not work or are not unpatched. I found ubuntu mate but the last update is from the first half of 2018r which is a very long time ago. I would like a minimum of something based on ubuntu 18.04 and on some newer kernel. Can I find somewhere some newer software that can run on this hardware without any problem? Is anyone able to help me? I have tried many OS but nothing but the old one works properly.

I tried to upload an image to the mmc memory of the device - and it was rather successful but despite many attempts without an inserted SD card the OS does not boot. When I have the SD card inserted and changed, for example, the indication in fstab and uEnv.txt then the system boots and the path for ‘/’ points to emmc memory. When I remove the card and reboot the device nothing happens.

I’m new and just getting started

You could try my last debian image

You can also use it as base and replace rootfs with armhf ubuntu and/or replace kernel with newer one from my repo.


Hi @frank-w I tried your image. I burned the image to SD memory but the OS rerstarts and reboots, yes all the time. I tried it twice.

Hi I also found an old R2 and want to reactivate it as a Web-/Nextcloudserver and for running Pihole. I’d like to have a Ubuntu Server version (so no unneccessary applications like the office package or GUI are using resources in daily usage). I tried building my own Ubuntu Server image with this How-to. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to produce a running Ubuntu Server image. Is there anyone able to build a Server image? I think this would make many people happy…

I don’t really care if it’s a 16.04 or 22.04 server image, upgrading is easy in my opinion. But removing/purging all unnecessary packages may lead to some errors (if removing too much)

Thanks in advance

Have you soldered the powerbutton or any such modification?

My uboot repo creates bootable images without kernel and rootfs for all bpi router boards.

For r2 use the bpi-r2.img.gz


Write unpacked image to sdcard and try to boot…then you can add rootfs (you can get via debotstrap see my wiki) and kernel (precompiled or self compiled from my linux-repo)

1 @frank-w I downloaded and run the image which I think is from you “ubuntu-18.04-bpi-r2-preview.img”. At first glance it looked ok. Does it support WiFi? If yes, how can I turn on and configure it.

2 I also downloaded this: https://download.banana-pi.dev/d/ca025d76afd448aabc63/?p=%2FImages%2FBPI-R2%2FUbuntu18.04&mode=list If it works then it is possible that I will stay with it. But I have a problem because the internet connection over wifi works fine but when I have an ethernet cable connected to the WAN port it no longer works. Do you know how I can configure to make the cable connection work?

If it is from me you should have a wifi.sh either in /root or /usr/local/sbin

If this is missing you can download it from my kernel repo

You will also need wmt tools and firmware-files

See readme there how to install these. Ubuntu 18.4 is very old and no more maintained…you cannot install any packages from official repos so you should use a newer version like i described.

I have already downloaded and burned to the card the image you sent earlier (bpi-r2.img.gz). I will check how it works and let you know. If I have a problem with something I will write.

I wanted to use a newer system as you recommended (you wrote that 18.04 is old and no more maintained) I run that image what you uploaded but I only have one color screen (like pink), nothing more :frowning:

As i said zhe bpi-r2.img is only a image without rootfs and kernel…it boots till u-boot bootloader. Hdmi is initlized in linux first if enabled. Before you need a a usb2uart adapter to access the device

I understand, thanks for the clarification. I don’t have such an adapter. Can I somehow add rootfs and kernel to the image / to the card so that I have a complete, bootable OS?

Yes you can do it if you know exactly what you do :slight_smile: i recommend using such adapter to not driving blind

You can try this too:

But it is in early alpha state. The script generates an up-to-date image with newest uboot and kernel.