S912 support, what is needed ?

  • No, I think it's not. Sometimes stronger words need to be used to get through people's thick skulls. Buying hardware first without doing proper investigation on what the status of Kodi and/or LibreELEC is, is no reason to come here and cry like a 4-year old asking for a bigger ice cream like some have already done.


    Developers are people too, with families and jobs. I wish there were more, good quality, developers for Kodi / LibreELEC, but sadly, that is not the case. We have to manage with what we got, and if developers say that they limited time, then you will accept that. Don't also forget we have plenty of work on solving bugs in our existing projects for Generic, RPi and other AMlogic devices. Some of those bugs take weeks if not longer.


    So just take a couple of deep breaths, and be thankful for all the work so far, as well as being a little less impatient.


    I would just like to chime in to say that, while you make a relevant point, you are also missing a crucial point.


    Since most manufacturers have stopped manufacturing MX3-G with the S812 chipset, and have all moved to the new S912 chipset it is only a matter of a short while before the S812 will be unavailable anywhere. Sure, you can get a few here and there but not for long.
    I have a business that runs on MX-3 devices. I use a custom LibreElec branch that works with the S812 chipset. However I can no longer purchase these, my only option is S912.
    I have developers that I pay handsomely for the work they do to create my Software, but they are unable to do anything without the supported libmali with fdev support.


    It's not a matter of jumping on the latest trend. The manufacturers are the ones jumping. We are left to deal with it.
    :-)
    Cheers,
    Ken

  • i would agree with kenmills... ive been doing this for a long long time and its kinda disheartening to see other supposedly smarter users flaming others over a issue thats ALWAYS been the manufacturers problem... most are smart enough to realize that the average joe tends to buy whats the best deal and with the manner most dealers market their wares it tough for perspective buys to know any better...


    The manufactures have always had a poor track record in providing good software support for the boards they decide to create and release as they have become overly dependent on the growing group of online programmers who tend to be hobbiest or part time guys trying to enjoy themselves for software that actually works properly or is more up to date. Most manufactures seem to focus on releasing the next generation of wonder boxes while they compete amongst themselves and depend on the on-line guys to fix up their messes. Even Amlogic is not very forth coming in providing proper information other then to a small handful of guys while locking everyone else out, which im sure at sometime will come back to bite them as other better supported SoCs will eventually push Amlogic backinto the tablet market, the whole Android box market is like gravy to them until the bigger players get their prices down and then things will change.


    As far as the S912 goes its possible to make a working graphics stack as there are ways of gleaning the information required to make up the user space portion Amlogic refuses to release. Its just extremely time consuming and ludicrous that others have to commit to that to create working solutions for the products that Amlogic help the main manufacturers create and dump on the open market. Currently i have both the T95K and T95U Pro boxes running Krypton as well as currently working Leia on linux.


    Sorry for the rant it just irks me to see other supposedly smarter users blaming the average unsuspecting buyer for expecting what they buy to work... and dont come ban as say they are at least providing Android support which lets them off the hook because both of these newer boxes im developing for came from a reputable manufacturer and even Android thats PROVIDED constantly crashes/locks up as Kodi performs extremely poorly and has a number of issues...

  • There is blame to be apportioned all around here...


    Personally I give big fat warnings plastered all over the Kodi Hardware forums (and elsewhere) telling potential customers to stay away from unsupported AML S912 devices period unless they are strictly your DIY types. Even then its good luck with their endeavors.


    Then you get the sellers with Flashy Deceptive Marketing who jump the gun trying to make a quick buck and release test AML Firmware with S912 devices that traps unsuspecting buyers. I'm looking squarely at you Beelink with your P.O.S. GT1 S912.


    But yes ultimately it AMLogic themselves to blame for their poor Firmware, that includes very poorly documented codebase changes & bug fixed codebase releases to selected large SoC customers. Its about time AML stopped focussing so much on Hardware and put more effort into Firmware.


    This is happening, but slowly and it going to take time.

  • What amazes me is that there are many great soc's out there, and allmost all of them lack proper firmware/driver support. With amlogic being one of the "better" supported soc's, take rockchip for example. Great spec's, no proper support. And the list is long; one could almost say that amlogic is propably one of the few manufacturers that has "some" support on "some" of their soc's. Having 802-805-812 working relatively good, 905 also ok, 912 crap support.


    So for anyone reading this thread and wanting to ask when s912 linux/LE will be there: ASK AMLOGIC!! They are the ones refusing to release the proper driver/code for the s912 soc. Asking the community to write their one framebuffer code is...crazy (especially without the documentation that only amlogic has).

  • Amlogic can't provide fbdev library for S912 because they don't have a licence that has to be bought from ARM. They only have Android DDK license. We will get the library as soon as the situation changes.


  • Amlogic can't provide fbdev library for S912 because they don't have a licence that has to be bought from ARM. They only have Android DDK license. We will get the library as soon as the situation changes.


    Amlogic didn't pay already ARM chip design ?
    They should also pay for fbdev drivers ?

    Odroid C2 (LE 8.1.0), Beelink Minix 2G/16G (LE 8.0.2a)

  • It means that I hardly have enough time to support S805 and S905. You have to remember that I have a family and a day job. ;)


    How dare you have a day job lol
    I've used your instructions to update my S905 .. Thank You ,, works a treat.
    I've got an S912 to do also, If and when You decide to do this, I will once again be in your debt.
    Thanks for the hard work

  • If you read the thread a few posts back, you'd know that there's only one piece missing for S912 support but all we can do is wait...

  • From here link and here link
    Amlogic

    • Support for the pre-release “SCPI” firmware protocol shipped by Amlogic in their GXBB SoC
    • Initial support for Amlogic S905D, and S912 (GXM) SoCs
    • Added support for Nexbox A1 and A95X Android TV boxes
    • Cleanup for the Amlogic Meson PWM driver
    • New Amlogic Meson Graphic Controller GXBB (S905)/GXL (S905X/S905D)/GXM (S912) SoCs (meson)
    • Resets for 2nd USB PHY
    • Initial support for the SD/eMMC controller in the Amlogic S905/GX* family of SoCs
    • Updated DTS to enable support for USB, I2C, SPI, maibox/MHU, PWM, ethernet MAC & PHY, secure monitor, IR, and watchdog.


    It is in some way useful this new stuff? Kernel 4.10

    Bqeel M9C Max [S905X/2G/16G]: LibreELEC always the latest community version

  • This means that you can run mainline kernel in console with some parts of hardware working on S905, S905X and S912. Nothing useful for a media center OS.


    LE team is in touch with the team responsible for mainlining Amlogic support, I assure you that when it's possible to run fully-functional Kodi on Amlogic driven by mainline kernel, LE will be one of the first to include it.


    That said we do not have Linux Mali libraries for S912. This means LE for S912 is not possible. Period.

  • Thanks for (re)clarifying the issues. So, #untilfurthernotice avoid S912 Soc.
    Enjoy your cofee! :cool:

    Bqeel M9C Max [S905X/2G/16G]: LibreELEC always the latest community version

    Edited once, last by garcea ().


  • This means that you can run mainline kernel in console with some parts of hardware working on S905, S905X and S912. Nothing useful for a media center OS.


    LE team is in touch with the team responsible for mainlining Amlogic support, I assure you that when it's possible to run fully-functional Kodi on Amlogic driven by mainline kernel, LE will be one of the first to include it.


    That said we do not have Linux Mali libraries for S912. This means LE for S912 is not possible. Period.


    The same thing applies to any device containing chips that shares the same GPU as S912 like Amlogic S966,Amlogic T966,Amlogic T968 Exynos 7570, Exynos 7650,Exynos 7870,Exynos 7880, Kirin 650, Realtek RTD1295 etc right?
    [hr]

    The same thing applies to any device containing chips that shares the same GPU as S912 like Amlogic S966,Amlogic T966,Amlogic T968 Exynos 7570, Exynos 7650,Exynos 7870,Exynos 7880, Kirin 650, Realtek RTD1295 etc right?


    Just exposing my ignorance here thus have to ask what's the difference between the android kernel driver for mali t830 like the one here [1] for Exynos 7870 is that stuff not usable due to licensing issues and between chipsets due to chipset makers adding their own "special" gpu sauce?


    android_kernel_samsung_exynos7870/drivers/gpu/arm/t83x/r7p0 at twrp-6.0 · jcadduono/android_kernel_samsung_exynos7870 · GitHub

    Edited once, last by johannbg ().


  • The same thing applies to any device containing chips that shares the same GPU as S912 like Amlogic S966,Amlogic T966,Amlogic T968 Exynos 7570, Exynos 7650,Exynos 7870,Exynos 7880, Kirin 650, Realtek RTD1295 etc right?




    Just exposing my ignorance here thus have to ask what's the difference between the android kernel driver for mali t830 like the one here [1] for Exynos 7870 is that stuff not usable due to licensing issues and between chipsets due to chipset makers adding their own "special" gpu sauce?


    Let me say this one more time: kernel driver is not an issue. The driver is available for some time, compiles and works in LE. What we need is libMali.so library specifically built for Mali-T820 in S912 (yes, it's T820, not T830).


    Generally speaking we can have 2 types of libraries: for Android and for "pure" Linux. While the first is freely available (i.e. released by Amlogic), the second is not. And we need the second type of the library.


    I have already tried to use libraries for other GPUs from the Midgard family (T620, T760, T860) but they refuse to work with T820.


    There's also a post on Mali developer forum explaining that the user-space binary drivers need to be sourced from the chip manufacturer: Mali T820 OpenGL and OpenCL driver support for Android and Linux ? - Graphics Discussions - Graphics & Multimedia - ARM Community

    Edited once, last by kszaq ().

  • Just to be clear about this... I don't think anyone is to blame other then Amlogic by pushing a SoC to the box makers without decently supporting it to begin with...


    wrxtasy... i agree and understand 100% when it comes to dealers and the innocent buyer looking for the best deal...


    The question one begs to ask is ... why Amlogic would choose to base their new flagship SoC S912 around a gpu based on IpCores for a processor they claim they cant produce the required linux userspace binaries for... I find the idea of Amlogic NOT having the Mali DDK for the Midgard T82xx they used in the S912 to be insane...


    This is how the Arm rep explained it to me... Arm supplies the required Mali DDK (in this case) to whoever the Silicon Partner is, Amlogic in this case. A few of us awhile back looked into trying to get the DDK from Arm...


    This is about Amlogic retaining control...


    Amlogic has always had Terrible support for Linux from the git go, sure, over the years they've gotten better as they appear to be helpful by throwing a bone once and awhile and by providing limited info to handful of coders, but that didn't seem to come until they seen a handful of coders sink their time into making Linux a reality by letting others do most of the work. Amlogic already controls most of the market as they spoon feed the manufactures who are more then happy in most cases to pass the firmware buck off to someone else which is why so much of the existing Android firmware is so similar from box to box no matter who the actual maker is. In alot of cases is just small differences in the device tree info that differs as small parts of the SoC may change. Ive spent years disassembling box firmware files and its not hard to see all the common markers from one vendor do the next, point being Amlogic's in control.


    All thats fine with me but people really should be made aware of the reality of things and its simple in that Until Amlogic decides to help with userland binaries to let Linux be fully supported on the S912's things are going to be tough to progress and in the meantime dealers keep pushing the S912 based boxes off on the mis-informed buyers coerced into buying a S912 box with buggy software... meaning Android...


    After 3 years of pestering Amlogic and not once having a emall of phone call returned I have long since given up asking for help... Having other Arm Sdk's lead me to ask a Arm rep about aquiring the Mali DDK and was told Arm will provide the required tools to their silicon partners after some terms are met... NDA's ... money... so basically it means if your not a huge volume vendor NO... further to the question was because Amlogic is the Silicon Partner using the T82x in question that it would be up to them to provide the Userland binaries for the version specific linux kernel to allow linux to run... the only way around this would be to find another silicon partner that has the full ddk to do it which again probably mean No... I asked as well about myself being able to sign/pay so as to able to create linux binaries as a company for exiting mali based products and was told they would get back to me which after that point all i got was a email thanking me for interest in the product and i never heard anymore. that was early last year...


    I spent a lot of time looking at the S912 as i truly thought it would be the next powerhouse in the cheaper SoC market as compared to the more expensive Intel or Nvidia level of boxes, but in now light of watching Amlogics tactics tell my customers to avoid the S912 based boxes no matter who they buy it from...
    would tell others to stick with boxes that have current public support and for anyone looking for more power to forget about Amlogic products as they seem to now be more about selling and less about support.


    In the meantime as others have said... they are being forced to upgrade by the manufacturers stopping the production on earlier models that had just finally started to come into their own as truly good stable software is finally coming from non-amlogic sources such as here and other places... Amlogic is taking advantage of a over populated manufacturing market by using the introduction of Rush-to-Market on products while trying to compete and the reality is its not because the chip isn't not a good design but rather over them trying to retain software control at the consumers cost...


    I know its not gonna happen but the best thing that could happen for now would be for the dealers buying from the manufactures to stop purchasing S912 based boxes and stick with boxes that are better supported, which i am sure from the manufactures point makes no never mind as they are really only interested in selling what theres a demand for... it might even make boxes cheaper as the S812 should be cheaper as they are no longer Amlogics cadilac...


    I understand business and how things are done but in the case of the S912's even Android is not very stable let alone expect Kodi to be any better is deceiving as to be honest we all know that Kodi with its ability to stream media is a key driver behind a lot of the increased interest in tv boxes...


    Hardkernel and the Odroid boards as far as i am aware are using the earlier Midgard or older Mali's so getting help from him may not be applicable...


    Kszaq... sorry if in anyway i come off as trying to imply or say your misinforming anyone as that is truly not my intention, i'm sure your repeating someone else's excuses for a problem of their own creation, and i truly hope what you said is wrong...


    on another note... keep up the great work, because you and the others like you a great many people have got working boxes because of you guys and the support you have managed to give the public... someday i hope someone rewards you guys for all the work you guys do because you guys deserve it...


    For me i am not interested in using Android to turn a TVbox into another Google spy toy as the people that come to me have already had a bad Android box experience because of a box they bought that doesn't function in the manner the dealer that sold it to them said it would, as a result i realized there was a decent market in providing people with a decent working solution when it comes to Android boxes and streaming media... My business is about providing the best running solution i can create for the end user and ive had to learn a few hard lessons over the years buy not staying away from certain things. If i sound biased towards a linux solution, its because i am... lol...


    There are methods of solving the issues but in some cases they introduce other issues and are bulky and not somthing i would want to dump into the public domain as that would just help justify Amlogics sale of the S912... I spent many years reverse engineering smart card wafers and firmware so i am not totally unfamiliar with firmware disassembly and hardware using jtag and other debugging links, but any real solution for public use is probably going to rely on Amlogic or someone else that can legally lay their hands on the Mali DDK to compile the version specific Userland Binaries... Maybe its time to dig out the old BlackHat and put in some time digging around... Even tho Odroids using a different midgard product following some of the threads over there help with a better understanding as there are some great guys and good posts for anyone researching the topic.


    Anyways... just my thoughts and hopefully i have not pee'd in anyones sandbox... I don't post all that much as i'm busy doing my own thing but do like to see what others are up to... it was the comments implying that buyers are responsible for what they get that got me to speak up... and i do agree that at times people do deserve what they get but i usually treat that as a case by case rather then blanket general statement...


  • Anyways... just my thoughts and hopefully i have not pee'd in anyones sandbox... I don't post all that much as i'm busy doing my own thing but do like to see what others are up to... it was the comments implying that buyers are responsible for what they get that got me to speak up... and i do agree that at times people do deserve what they get but i usually treat that as a case by case rather then blanket general statement...


    You are not thinking about amlogic's situation rationally, read this; its by design. :P
    Planned obsolescence - Wikipedia
    Planned obsolescence

  • Hello,


    X is already working with S912, BUT without gpu acceleration. It's smooth by the way, and perfectly working, except when dealing with hd videos or any other graphical rendering.
    (It remembers me old times when I was running debian woody on hp 712 workstations)