Standard Debian image on Mars?

With the updates to the recent linux kernel, can we now use a standard Debian image on Milk-V Mars?

If not, is the provided Milk-V image largely standard? I am trying to set it up headless and want to know if I need to avoid anything image specific.

The mars seems to be stuck on 5.15.0. I was able to make a kernel using the visionfive linux repo and going back to when milkv forked it, and using the config from the official debian image. I did try building 6.6.0 with the same config and using olddefconfig to update it. It did not work and I’m not a kernel dev so I don’t what to answer to all the update questions. I hope milkv comes out with a new kernel, but seeing how they are a fork of the visionfive2 repo, my guess is until a new kernel is available for the visionfive2 we won’t be getting anything new. I am working on building my debian image that won’t be stuck on a debian snapshot, but who knows if it will work.

DietPi works, it updates, I have tried to install the graphical environment too:

Linux mars 6.1.59 #1 SMP Sat Oct 21 21:17:40 UTC 2023 riscv64 GNU/Linux

       _,met$$$$$gg.          christian@mars 
    ,g$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$P.       -------------- 
  ,g$$P"     """Y$$.".        OS: Debian GNU/Linux trixie/sid riscv64 
 ,$$P'              `$$$.     Host: StarFive VisionFive V2 
',$$P       ,ggs.     `$$b:   Kernel: 6.1.59 
`d$$'     ,$P"'   .    $$$    Uptime: 4 mins 
 $$P      d$'     ,    $$P    Packages: 296 (dpkg) 
 $$:      $$.   -    ,d$$'    Shell: bash 5.2.15 
 $$;      Y$b._   _,d$P'      Resolution: 1366x768 
 Y$$.    `.`"Y$$$$P"'         Terminal: /dev/pts/0 
 `$$b      "-.__              CPU: (4) @ 1.500GHz 
  `Y$$                        Memory: 80MiB / 3872MiB 

I’ll check that out thanks for the tip. Plus a newer kernel.

Thanks @Christian! I’ll try that out now as well and report back.

For those who use audio from the command line there is the same problem as other distributions, playback through the HDMI port works at 44.1 and 48 kHz only in stereo.

From my point of view DietPi is much more usable than other distributions, it has tolerable defects considering that I use Mars SBC remotely.

For those who need a bad Debian distro to use Wayland, StarFive has updated the image; you can find it here:

Linux starfive 5.15.0-starfive #1 SMP Mon Oct 30 09:12:59 UTC 2023 riscv64 GNU/Linux

    ,g$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$P.       ------------- 
  ,g$$P"     """Y$$.".        OS: Debian GNU/Linux bookworm/sid riscv64 
 ,$$P'              `$$$.     Host: StarFive VisionFive V2 
',$$P       ,ggs.     `$$b:   Kernel: 5.15.0-starfive 
`d$$'     ,$P"'   .    $$$    Uptime: 16 mins 
 $$P      d$'     ,    $$P    Packages: 1311 (dpkg) 
 $$:      $$.   -    ,d$$'    Shell: bash 5.2.2 
 $$;      Y$b._   _,d$P'      Resolution: 1366x768 
 Y$$.    `.`"Y$$$$P"'         Terminal: /dev/pts/1 
 `$$b      "-.__              CPU: (4) @ 1.500GHz 
  `Y$$                        Memory: 1366MiB / 3874MiB 

New addition:

Thanks, @Christian

I tried the DietPi_VisionFive2-RISC-V-Sid image cited in the DietPi blog post for VisionFive2.

I flashed onto a SD card, updated the dietpi config on the boot partition, popped it in and … I get double green blinks every other second, like what @geerlingguy describes in his blog post.

Can you share what image you used and what process you followed to get the Mars booting with DietPi? Notably, did you manually update the bootloader the first time? I wasn’t sure if there was an issue using that bootloader on the Mars.

Of course, I’ll leave you the file I downloaded directly:

Thanks. Did you update the bootloader before you used this? Did you change anything in dietpi.txt?

No, burned without any modification.

Worked - Thank you!

LXDE, TightVNC and Firefox all working as well! Apt update & upgrade also not causing issues, so hoping that RVSpace changes make it upstream quickly.

Tried putting the 6.5 kernel on, but had issues with linux-images–6.5.0-4 install. Any tips on how you upgraded the kernel?

I’m working on being able to compile a kernel like the dietpi image (6.1.59 maybe 6.1.61) I found GitHub - MichaIng/linux which seems to be the source they are using. It’s a old fork of the visionfive2 kernel build but they have kept it up to date with the newest LTS kernel. I might be going the wrong direction as it’s target is visionfive2 stuff and I’ve found the visionfive2 stuff is hot or miss if it works on the mars. I haven’t quite cracked it yet to boot the mars. I keep losing HDMI out. As for 6.5 or 6.6 it is a heavy patched kernel and there doesn’t seem to a great place to get those patches.

New image:

I’ll stop looking at them.

DietPi’s latest release (8.24) has 6.1.62 in it.