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Dasharo for NovaCustom NS5X - Installation manual

Intro

Flashing coreboot can be done from Linux using flashrom with the internal programmer. This document describes the process of building, installing and running flashrom on Ubuntu 20.04.

Build flashrom

Currently, the latest flashrom release lacks support for Tiger Lake-U internal flashing. Because of this, we need to build flashrom from source.

Install build dependencies:

# apt install git build-essential debhelper pkg-config libpci-dev libusb-1.0-0-dev libftdi1-dev meson

Obtain source code:

$ git clone https://review.coreboot.org/flashrom.git
$ cd flashrom

Build flashrom:

$ make
$ sudo make install

Reading flash contents

To read from the flash and save them to a file (dump.rom), execute the following command:

# flashrom -p internal -r dump.rom

Installing Dasharo

Initial Installation

During initial installation of Dasharo, you should deploy supported Intel ME version (and configuration) on the device.

Publicly released binaries do not contain ME binary. If you need an Intel ME update for your device, contact us via already established commercial support channel.

When flashing binaries with ME binary included, flashing of the whole chip is required. Additionally, the firmware has to be flashed externally using an external programmer like a ch341a_spi.

ns50mu chips

Steps for initial Dasharo installation:

  • Open the laptop
  • Disconnect the primary battery (1)
  • Disconnect the CMOS battery (2)
  • Attach an external programmer with a SOIC-8 clip to the SPI flash chip (3)
  • Execute the following command, replaceing [path] with the path to the firmware image you want to flash, e.g. novacustom_ns5x_full_v1.0.0.rom
# flashrom -p ch341a_spi -w [path]
  • Detach the SOIC-8 clip
  • Connect the primary battery (1) - do not connect the CMOS battery yet (2)
  • Power on the laptop. The laptop may shut down once after training the memory.
  • Once Dasharo is booted, shut down the laptop and reconnect the CMOS battery.

Updating Dasharo

If Dasharo is currently installed, only the RW_SECTION_A partition of the flash needs to be updated. Flash it using the following command:

# flashrom -p internal -w [path] --fmap -i RW_SECTION_A

This command also preserves UEFI settings and the boot order.