Getting Started


Welcome!

Especially if you are new to Single Board Computers, and tinkerer communities in general, it may be a bit confusing at first to get a hang of how it all works. To get you started, here is a short rundown of where you’ll find the resources you’ll need and where you can reach out for help if need be.

Have fun!

Our community consists of developers and end-users. There will always be someone to help you out, so if you’re in need of help make sure to reach out. 

Software

Regardless of which PINE64 device you received you will need an operating system to actually make use of it. If you are not an experienced user, that is to say you have not used ARM systems or single board computers in the past, then the place to start is the PINE64 Installer utility. This utility may not offer the newest or most cutting edge OS Images for your device, but it will make the process of getting your device up-and-running seamless. Newer iterations of OS images, and even pre-release OS images intended for testing, can almost always be forum on the forum (see stickied threads in relevant ). Information about new community or partner project OS builds always finds it way into the forum – so if you are an experienced user, we encourage you to seek out new builds on the forum.

The PINE64 Installer utility is handy to get you started. But it is the nature of FOSS projects that development is constant and frequently fast, and in result many OS Images in the installer may not be cutting-edge or may simply be outdated.

Under the ‘Partner Projects’ tab you can find the OS you’re interested in. The PINE64 Installer doesn’t always have up-to-date or cutting edge OS images.

If you check out our forum, you will also find that many developers post their OS builds on GitHub or similar repositories. Its worth checking out newest builds as they may contain numerous fixes.

Community

You will probably want to start your PINE64 journey by signing up for the forum. The forum sign-up does not only allow you to ask questions and participate in the ongoing discussion, but it also allows you to contribute to the wiki and write for the website blog (if you so desire). On the forum you can report issues, help out other users, offer up findings and new information, but also engage directly with community and partner-project developers, as well as with us of crouse!

You can also choose to join one of the many chats we and the community have established. At the time of writing, there are over 600 people people frequenting our chats, and countless others visit daily to acquire information or just hang-out. The chats are – in line with the nature of open source projects – where much of the hardware and software development takes place. For those of you who do not want to participate in the chat but wish to follow along so that you can stay up-to-date on latest developments, there is also a conversation log available. You can find the different chats under the community tab on the website.  

PINE64 FORUM

PINE64 IRC

PINE64 Discord

Documentation, Development and Project Ideas

Documentation for your device, including device schematics, SOC details, pin-outs, software sources, etc., are all available on the PINE64 wiki. If you are a registered forum member, and have at least 3 moderated posts, then you are welcome to contribute materials to the wiki. The wiki also has multiple sections dedicated to getting you started on your project; this includes basics for beginners who may, for instance, require information about flashing the SD card or eMMC module, or proper troubleshooting protocols in the event of issues.

Where applicable, on the wiki you will also find software sources for Linux BSP or Android. Other software sources, such as for instance mainline linux patches, may also be linked where and when appropriate. Since so much PINE64-specific software is developed by the community members – who tend to post their work on the forum or github (or similar platforms) – the wiki also pools together these resources and links back to the original sources.

Lastly, the wiki has a dedicated section for project ideas. As with any part of the wiki, this section too is created and maintained by the community. The project section links back to a vast number of ongoing projects, tutorials, videos, etc., showcasing various use-cases of your hardware. If you are working on a project not already covered by the Project section, then you are more than welcome to add so that it can inspire and help others. You are also allowed to add projects belonging to others – just make sure to credit the original project maker accordingly and link back to the original Project source.

It is noteworthy that each PINE64 device forum sub-section has its own projects and ideas section, where users frequently post about what they are working on. Make sure to look though these sections too as not all PINE64 projects in existence have been added or documented on the wiki.

Apart from containing information about the individual devices, Wiki also has information about flashing SD cards and eMMC modules, debugging using UART and reporting problems, as well as project ideas and tutorials.

You will also find that, unlike the PINE64 Installer, the majority of download links in the Wiki point to the original source. This means that you can download the newest OS Images from partner projects and community developers directly from the download sections for your respective device.

News, Events and Updates

There are two main places where you can learn about upcoming devices and events as well as follow developments progress – namely, the blog on this website and the news section on the forum. We are also active on Twitter and Mastodon so make sure to follow us on there too.

PINE64 Twitter

PINE64 Mastodon

If you are a developer, reviewer or represent a business and need to contact us via email please click the contact button