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Helm Armbian Image Installation

This repository contains Armbian images for the Helm v2a and Helm v2b devices. These are the second generation Helms that are square shaped instead of the triangle shaped v1 Helms. There are two different variants of the Helm v2 and it's important to install the correct image based on the revision of your hardware. The FCC ID on the label on the bottom of your Helm can be used to determine what version you own.

Helm v2a
Latest Arbmian Image: Armbian_22.11.2-build-48_Helm-v2a_bullseye_legacy_4.4.213_minimal.img

Helm v2b
Latest Arbmian Image: Armbian_22.11.2-build-48_Helm-v2b_bullseye_legacy_4.4.213_minimal.img


  • Built from Armbian Bullseye release
  • Kernel and u-boot updates provided by Helm Debian Resitory hosted on GitHub
  • Other software package updates provided by Armbian and Debian projects
  • Linux host PC is required for flashing the image


Known Issues

Installation Instructions

  1. Before installing Armbian on your Helm, backup up any data that you need to preserve. Once the Arbian image is programmed you will lose access to all data currently stored on your Helm.
  2. Helm v2 devices contain a Rockchip rk3399 SoC. The Rockchip rkdeveloptool running on a Linux host is required to flash the image. Please follow the instructions found here for installing the rkdeveloptool on a Linux box.
  3. Connect your Helm to power and to your router via ethernet
  4. When your Helm is fully booted, press and hold the power button for 25 seconds
  5. Remove the power cable, press the power button and hold, insert power cable. Keep the power button pressed for 6 seconds after inserting power and then release. This process will put your Helm into maskrom mode.
  6. Connect to the Helm via a usb-c cable from your Linux host computer using one of the two usb-c ports on the right of the ethernet port when looking at the Helm from the back.
  7. Confirm that your Linux host has detected the Helm is maskrom mode. Running the lsusb command on the Linux host should show a device named "Fuzhou Rockchip Electronics Company RK3399 in Mask ROM mode". If the device doesn't show, attempt steps 4-6 again.
  8. Flash the image to your Helm using these commands:
$ sudo ./rkdeveloptool db helm-loader-build-38.bin
$ sudo ./rkdeveloptool wl 0 [the .img file downloaded from here]
$ sudo ./rkdeveloptool ul helm-loader-build-38.bin
$ sudo ./rkdeveloptool rd

You can download the helm-loader-build-38.bin file here:

Armbian Instructions

Gateway and Email Server Instructions

Download the following PDF for general instructions for setting up a Linux based email server with a gateway service to provide a static IP: Gateway and Server Instructions