Armbian 24.04 on a06?

Anyone try the latest Armbian 24.04 on their DT a06? All I’m getting is black screen, and pretty sure I don’t have a micro HDMI at home to test and see if it is defaulting to HDMI. I also don’t have serial connected, going to have to get that wired up at some point.

Basically, I’m back at trying to use this device after giving up for almost a year. It seems that every time I really need it to work, it would fight me or refuse to work at all. So back trying the latest Armbian and no go. Why Armbian? Because it mostly worked in the older version and was a base OS that I was somewhat comfortable working with.

For those times it fails me, I have to carry around a cheap Windows laptop to make sure I can get work done. Simple browser stuff like OPNsense firewall, or serial port work in my switches. Sometimes I was good working with the DT, sometimes it would just fail me and I’m hoping to figure it out. Else I may need to buy a Pi4 module and move over to that OS

After messing around with a bunch of different images, the problem starts with kernel 6.x. I ended up going back to the last version of 5.x for now. I don’t think the person/people working on Armbian have a Devterm or any of the processor modules to go with it. I’ll have to buy an HDMI micro adapter and see what happens on the new kernels, I should probably have one in my IT bag anyway.

I may still buy a Pi 4 module and track down a CM4 Lite to run as an upgrade, it seems like the most recent work is all going into the Pi family. I’m not at all up to speed enough where I can try compiling my own OS or kernel.

Looks like there will be no help from the Armbian forum… I connected an HDMI and still nothing coming out, or nothing that will fit a resolution that my monitor can render. The DT is drawing 1 amp while it sits there doing whatever it is doing. I can also see that it didn’t expand the image to use all the free space on the card, using a small 16gb card so that it would be faster to expand.

Anyone have any thoughts that I might try?

I’ve given up on trying custom images for the A06.

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I’m just about to the stage where I’m never going to buy something that isn’t mainstream again. I’m kind of thinking that even buying the CM4 module is going to be more good money after bad. Hardware was a neat idea, software was a complete dumpster fire!

Maybe I’ll donate mine to someone like Jeff Geerling just to get it out of my sight.

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I have an A04 and a CM4, the machine is a lot better with the cm4. It’s still true you can’t flash just any distro and run it but we’re up to 6 distros that are current with the CM4. You’ll have a much better experience switching to the CM4. If you already have a use for the device then it don’t think switching core would just be throwing money away.


I agree. I originally got a A06 DevTerm when they first came out, and while it was a sort of fun project for a bit, just trying to get it working, and maybe even working “well” (or at least stable) despite all the issues, it ended up collecting dust for a while. Later, I decided to get a CM4 for my DevTerm. Even before all the community distros that have recently appeared, with the default OS, it was still more reliable and stable than the A06. (Now my spare A06 chip collects dust, instead of my whole DevTerm).

When they were first released, everyone seemed excited over the hardware and was convinced the A06 would perform better than the CM4. I bought into that hype too. I’m not even convinced it is true. OS platform bugs aside, it seemed to suffer more from heat issues, and would need to be throttled to the point where it wasn’t much better than the CM4 and may have actually been worse, at least based on my anecdotal usage. Some people spent time on better cooling solutions like the fan assembly that would force air through better, and that may have helped. But even a moderate performance gain may not be worth the extra hassle of having to build everything from source, and hope that the source your using isn’t making any assumptions about the Pi platform that may not be true for the A06. Even controlling the cooling fan on the A06 was a pain, relying on a hacky python script, where with the CM4 it’s using the built in OS fan controls rather than weird extra stuff.

I never owned an A04 but those things seemed to be even more of a problem, since I don’t think I ever read anyone successfully get HDMI out working on them in the forums, and I’m guessing that’s why they are no longer sold.

I don’t plan on going with custom processors in the future either. Even if they do work well, the business model ClockworkPi seems to have is to make something (legitimately cool) and then let the community support it, and it’s harder for the community to support something custom (or even care as much) because less is known about it and fewer people will be using it.


I haven’t been following the Pi4 threads… Which CM module do I want to buy? I see Lite which suggests no EMMC, and Lite with Wifi? Can the EMMC version be used or is that a failure waiting to make me angry? Looks like another $100usd for a CM4 lite (no wifi) with 8gb of ram (yes I want 8gb) and the adapter for the DevTerm, is that what I should be looking for?

I do have a fast 256gb SD card that I’m using with the a06, thought I might want the storage, but not really needed now that I can get a better feel for how well, (or not) it works.

I’ve also looked at the uConsole, due to the better resolution on the screen, this might be a better choice because it should prevent some of the stupid menu issues that the 480 tall display gives us. Would also be better for the web pages that I may need to work with. Just wondering if the uConsole might be a better use of the money, still going forward with the CM4 to power it. The only thing I don’t like about the uConsole is only a single USB port (unless the C port can do more than power). I often need a USB serial device and a USB ethernet device, gigabit ethernet would be a big bonus if that C port works at faster speeds.

These products are really cool, but abandoning them after the hardware is released is not cool. The RPi is so strong because they really got behind the software side and keep it going, along with the community support that helps out. Hard to suggest that doesn’t make for a winning product as we can see the reults between Pi and all others.

Get the CM4 lite with WiFi. The CM4 can’t use the main boards WiFi. Emmc is faster but you’ll need a separate io board to flash the image to because if you have emmc the SD card slot becomes unusable. I have both and the uConsole is leagues better in usability because of the screen. 480 just isn’t good unless you’re just in the console all the time. The USBC is just for power but there is a addon card with 3 USBC ports running at USB 2 speeds. My DevTerm was way better after putting in the CM4 I also use a 8gb one.