U-Boot 2013.10 Release 2 for i.MX6

Published on January 23, 2014

Archived Notice

This article has been archived and may contain broken links, photos and out-of-date information. If you have any questions, please Contact Us.

Beginning today, we'll start shipping a new release of U-Boot on our i.MX6 boards.

You can grab a package of binaries from the usual place:

The previous set of binaries is also still available.

If you extract the content to an SD card, you can upgrade on our standard 1GiB versions of Nitrogen6X or BD-SL-i.MX6 boards like so: U-Boot > bootfile=u-boot.nitrogen6q ; run upgradeu Refer to this post for more detail and this post for the list of available machine configurations.

Why you might want it

Device Tree

As with our previous release, this release is still based on the 2013.10 release from main-line, but contains some updates to allow loading Device Tree Binaries (or BLOBs) based on the machine type and processor type. We'll elaborate on those topics in upcoming posts, but for now, suffice it to say that we need to load a different device tree for a Quad-Core Nitrogen6X and a Single-Core Nitrogen6X and this needs a bit of introspection. If you want to experiment with some of the newer kernels, including 3.10.17 or linux-next, the U-Boot changes in this release and the updated boot script will make this easier.

The majority of the other updates are for custom boards and new displays we're supporting, but there is one other item of note.


We had reports from a handful of customers using 2GiB of DDR on Nitrogen6X, and found that our DDR calibration data was off. The original DDR calibration for 2GiB boards was produced on only a handful of boards, and we found that those were at the edge of the expected range. We recently produced a much larger batch of 2GiB boards, gathered a more representative sample, and have updated the configuration files accordingly.

In other words, if you have a 2GiB board, you should probably upgrade.

If you have unexplained kernel crashes on a 2GiB board, you should definitely upgrade to this release.

If you're only using 512 MiB and/or 1GiB boards and will only use the 3.0.35 kernel, there's not much reason to update and you may want to skip this release.

Branch Naming

Beginning with this release, we're changing around our naming convention for older branches.

A more complete description is here in the U-Boot-on-i.MX6 page, but we're starting a new practice of saving old versions with branches named vYYYY.MM-yyyymmdd so that Yocto will have branch names that live over time. Our production branch is a consistent name, and is easy to remember, but doesn't contain a consistent history. We move it at least with each release from main-line U-Boot.