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Why another Yi firmware?

The answer is simple: missing updates, RTSP and not based on the latest stock firmware (which features improvements and new cool stuff). The effort and work that has been put into the other projects is great and without them the making of this new version wouldn't be possible.

RTSP Server

I've been working on a functional RTSP implementation for the past 3 months. After that I published on Discord the first working closed-beta, available to supporters only. Since then I fixed some issues with Xiaomi's H264 encoder that happened to hang ffmpeg of Shinobi and Home Assistant.

Now everything works as it should and the app functionalities are intact (but they can be disabled if you want).

Tested on the following platforms (but it should work with anything that accepts an RTSP stream:

  • Home Assistant
  • Shinobi
  • Zoneminder
  • Synology Surveillance Station

I'm really thankful to those who supported the project and helped me by donating or sending me new cameras to test on, therefore I would like to reward them allowing to be the first ones to test the new functionalities.

Here's a quick guide on how to enable it: Enable RTSP Server.

Table of Contents


This firmware will add the following features:

    • NEW CAMERAS SUPPORTED: Yi Outdoor 1080p and Yi Cloud Dome 1080p.
    • RTSP server - which will allow a RTSP stream of the video while keeping the cloud features enabled (available to the supporters of the project).
    • viewd - a daemon to check the /tmp/view buffer heads/tails location (needed by the RTSP).
    • MQTT - detect motion directly from your home server!
    • WebServer - user-friendly stats and configurations.
    • SSH server - Enabled by default.
    • Telnet server - Disabled by default.
    • FTP server - Enabled by default.
    • Web server - Enabled by default.
    • Proxychains-ng - Disabled by default. Useful if the camera is region locked.
    • The possibility to disable all the cloud features while keeping the RTSP stream.
  • In development:
    • ONVIF
    • A static image snapshot from the web interface.

This firmware might add:

  • Alarm functionality via Telegram (@frekel's PR #177 in yi-hack-v3)
  • Auto upload of the recorded footage to the cloud (eg. Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.)
  • Rotation control (on Yi Dome versions of the camera) without need for the app.
  • You decide, just open an issue with the request.

Supported cameras

Currently this project supports the following cameras:

  • Yi Home 17CN / 27US / 47US
  • Yi 1080p Home
  • Yi Dome
  • Yi 1080p Dome
  • Yi 1080p Cloud Dome
  • Yi 1080p Outdoor

Getting Started

  1. Check that you have a correct Xiaomi Yi camera. (see the section above)

  2. Get an microSD card, preferably of capacity 16gb or less and format it by selecting File System as FAT32.

IMPORTANT: The microSD card must be formatted in FAT32. exFAT formatted microSD cards will not work.

How to format microSD cards > 32GB as FAT32 in Windows 10

For microSD cards larger than 32 GB, Windows 10 only gives you the option to format as NTFS or exFAT. You can create a small partition (e.g 4 GB) on a large microSD card (e.g. 64 GB) to get the FAT32 formatting option.

  • insert microSD card into PC card reader
  • open Disk Management (e.g. Win+x, k)
    • Disk Management: delete all partitions on the microSD card
      • right click each partition > "Delete Volume..."
      • repeat until there are no partitions on the card
    • Disk Management: create a new FAT32 partition
      • right click on "Unallocated" > "New Simple Volume..."
      • Welcome to the New Simple Volume Wizard: click "Next"
      • Specify Volume Size: 4096 > "Next"
      • Assign Drive Letter or Path: (Any) > "Next"
      • Format Partition: Format this volume with the following settings:
        • File system: FAT32
        • Allocation unit size: Default
        • Volume label: Something
        • Perform a quick format: ☑

You should now have a FAT32 partition on your microSD card that will allow the camera to load the firmware files to update to yi-hack-v4.

Example: 4 GB FAT32 partition on 64 GB microSD card

example: 4 GB FAT32 on 64 GB

  1. Get the correct firmware files for your camera from this link:
Camera rootfs partition home partition Remarks
Yi Home - - Not yet supported.
Yi Home 17CN / 27US / 47US rootfs_y18 home_y18 Firmware files required for the Yi Home 17CN / 27US / 47US camera.
Yi 1080p Home rootfs_y20 home_y20 Firmware files required for the Yi 1080p Home camera.
Yi Dome rootfs_v201 home_v201 Firmware files required for the Yi Dome camera.
Yi 1080p Dome rootfs_h20 home_h20 Firmware files required for the Yi 1080p Dome camera.
Yi 1080p Cloud Dome rootfs_y19 home_y19 Firmware files required for the Yi 1080p Cloud Dome camera.
Yi Outdoor rootfs_h30 home_h30 Firmware files required for the Yi Outdoor camera.
  1. Save both files on root path of microSD card.

IMPORTANT: Make sure that the filename stored on microSD card are correct and didn't get changed. e.g. The firmware filenames for the Yi 1080p Dome camera must be home_h20 and rootfs_h20.

  1. Remove power to the camera, insert the microSD card, turn the power back ON.

  2. The yellow light will come ON and flash for roughly 30 seconds, which means the firmware is being flashed successfully. The camera will boot up.

  3. The yellow light will come ON again for the final stage of flashing. This will take up to 2 minutes.

  4. Blue light should come ON indicating that your WiFi connection has been successful.

  5. Go in the browser and access the web interface of the camera as a website. By default, the hostname of the camera is yi-hack-v4. Access the web interface by entering the following in your web browser: http://yi-hack-v4

Depending upon your network setup, accessing the web interface with the hostname may not work. In this case, the IP address of the camera has to be found.

This can be done from the App. Open it and go to the Camera Settings --> Network Info --> IP Address.

Access the web interface by entering the IP address of the came in a web browser. e.g.

IMPORTANT: If you have multiple cameras. It is important to configure each camera with a unique hostname. Otherwise the web interface will only be accessible by IP address.

  1. Done! You are now successfully running yi-hack-v4!

Unbrick your camera

TO DO - (It happened a few times and it's often possible to recover from it)


Special thanks to the following people and projects, without them yi-hack-v4 wouldn't be possible.