Installing Debian Linux arm64 on a RaspberryPi 3 Model B+

Release date: 2019-01-05

As of December 2018 it is possible to install a 64bit Debian Linux arm64 with a Debian or Vanilla Kernel on the RaspberryPi 3 Model B+ without the need to use a super-specialised distribution. You will need exactly three closed source files from the RaspberryPi Foundation, the rest of the system can be a regular Debian Linux arm64. Booting a system like this with u-boot is not straight forward but possible once you understood the syntax. In the following lines I will try to give you some additional information concerning this issue.

You will need a 16 GB SD-card, a host system with a recent Debian Linux and a working SD-card reader to perform the installation. I recommend two-partition installation, using vfat for the first partition and ext4 for the second. All data on the sd-card will be erased!

Theoretically it would also be possible to use the "stable" distribution of Debian Linux if you do not want to use "testing", but you should use at least "buster" which 12/2018 is "testing". To change, switch testing to stable in the qemu-debootstrap and sources.list entries.

You use all of this information at your own risk!!! There is absolutely no warranry!!!

RaspberryPi 3 B+ BOOT Archive
I collected some files which proved to be very helpful for setting up a RaspberryPi 3 B+ and packaged them in this archive. Please feel free to use them. It is absolutely possible that the contents may be outdated by the time you are planning to use them.
Nota bene: As of 12/2018 blacklisting of the vc4-module (see boot.cmd) is necessary to boot and the internal wifi is not working. Most probably both things are going to change.
Released:31 Dec 2018 by Bodo Giannone (
boot.cmdrecommended boot script (raw file)
bootcode.binfirmware (from
boot.scrrecommended boot script (image file)
brcmfmac43455-sdio.tgzfirmware needed for internal wifi (from Raspbian Linux)
config.txtconfiguration file for firmware
fixup.datfirmware (
gen_boot.scrscript to create the boot script image file
start.elffirmware (

Prepare the host-system

Prepare the client-system

Install Debian Linux on the client-system

Configure the client-system
(You need to create the following files)

Completing the installation



© 2018-2019 by Bodo Giannone
Alle Angaben ohne Gew√§hr !!!     Caveat lector