ARM Devices

Void Linux provides packages and images for several ARM devices. Installing Void on such devices can be done in several ways:

  • Pre-built images: images that can be flashed directly onto an SD card or other storage medium, but which give you a limited partition layout, and require manual expansion if you wish to increase the size of the partitions;
  • Tarball installation: PLATFORMFS and ROOTFS tarballs that can be extracted to a previously prepared partition scheme; and
  • Chroot installation: follows most of the steps outlined in the chroot guide.

This guide also outlines configuration steps that are mostly specific to such devices.

Since most of the commands in this guide will be run on external storage, it is important to run sync(1) before removing the device.


If you are installing Void Linux on one of the ARM devices covered in the "Supported platforms" page, make sure to read its section thoroughly.

Pre-built images

After downloading and verifying an image, it can be written to the relevant media with cat(1), pv(1), or dd(1). For example, to flash it onto an SD card located at /dev/mmcblk0:

# dd if=<image>.img of=/dev/mmcblk0 bs=4M status=progress

Custom partition layout

Customizing an installation - for example, with a custom partition layout - requires a more involved process. Two available options are:

To prepare the storage for these installation methods, it is necessary to partition the storage medium and then mount the partitions at the correct mount points.

The usual partitioning scheme for ARM devices requires at least two partitions, on a drive formatted with an MS-DOS partition table:

  • one formatted as FAT32 with partition type 0c, which will be mounted on /boot;
  • one that can be formatted as any file system that Linux can boot from, such as ext4, which will be mounted on /. If you're using an SD card, you can create the ext4 file system with the ^has_journal option - this disables journaling, which might increase the drive's life, at the cost of a higher chance of data loss.

There are a variety of tools available for partitioning, e.g. cfdisk(8).

To access the newly created file systems, it is necessary to mount them. This guide will assume that the second partition will be mounted on /mnt, but you may mount it elsewhere. To mount these filesystems, you can use the commands below, replacing the device names with the appropriate ones for your setup:

# mount /dev/mmcblk0p2 /mnt
# mkdir /mnt/boot
# mount /dev/mmcblk0p1 /mnt/boot

Tarball installation

First, download and verify a PLATFORMFS or ROOTFS tarball for your desired platform and prepare your storage medium. Then, unpack the tarball onto the file system using tar(1):

# tar xvfp <image>.tar.xz -C /mnt

Chroot installation

It is also possible to perform a chroot installation, which can require the qemu-user-static package together with either the binfmt-support or proot package if a computer with an incompatible architecture (such as i686) is being used. This guide explains how to use the qemu-<platform>-static program from qemu-user-static with proot(1).

First, prepare your storage medium. Then, follow either the XBPS chroot installation or the ROOTFS chroot installation steps, using the appropriate architecture and base packages, some of which are listed in the "Supported Platforms" section.

Finally, follow the chroot configuration steps steps, but instead of using the chroot(1) command to enter the chroot, use the following command, replacing <platform> with arm for armv6l and armv7l devices, and with aarch64 for aarch64 devices:

# proot -q qemu-<platform>-static -r /mnt -w /


Some additional configuration steps need to be followed to guarantee a working system. Configuring a graphical session should work as normal.

Logging in

For the pre-built images and tarball installations, the root user password is voidlinux.


The /boot partition should be added to /etc/fstab, with an entry similar to the one below. It is possible to boot without that entry, but updating the kernel package in that situation can lead to breakage, such as being unable to find kernel modules, which are essential for functionality such as wireless connectivity. If you aren't using an SD card, replace /dev/mmcblk0p1 with the appropriate device path.

/dev/mmcblk0p1 /boot vfat defaults 0 0

System time

Several of the ARM devices supported by Void Linux don't have battery powered real time clocks (RTCs), which means they won't keep track of time once powered off. This issue can present itself as HTTPS errors when browsing the Web or using the package manager. It is possible to set the time manually using the date(1) utility. In order to fix this issue for subsequent boots, install and enable an NTP client. Furthermore, it is possible to install the fake-hwclock package, which provides the fake-hwclock service. fake-hwclock(8) periodically stores the current time in a configuration file and restores it at boot, leading to a better initial approximation of the current time, even without a network connection.

Warning: Images from before 2020-03-16 might have an issue where the installation of the chrony package, the default NTP daemon, is incomplete, and the system will be missing the chrony user. This can be checked in the output of the getent(1) command, which will be empty if it doesn't exist:

$ getent group chrony

In order to fix this, it is necessary to reconfigure the chrony package using xbps-reconfigure(1).

Graphical session

The xf86-video-fbturbo package ships a modified version of the DDX Xorg driver found in the xf86-video-fbdev package, which is optimized for ARM devices. This can be used for devices which lack more specific drivers.