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64-bit Tiano Core UEFI for the Raspberry Pi 3 (with devices, yay!)
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64-bit Tiano Core UEFI for the Raspberry Pi 3

Last updated April 5th, 2018.

This is an implementation of a 64-bit UEFI firmware for the RPi3 platform, based off Ard Bisheuvel's 64-bit and Microsoft's 32-bit

Initially, this was supposed to be an easy walk in the park, where the Microsoft drivers just sorta slide into Ard's UEFI implementation, and I call it a day. It turned out to be a bit more frustrating of an experience than that :-).


This is meant as a generally useful 64-bit UEFI implementation for the Pi3, good enough for most kinds of UEFI development and good enough for running real operating systems. It has been validated to install and boot Linux (SUSE, Ubuntu) and FreeBSD.

Latest Status

  • 2017 Apr 5th: improved ACPI (FADT, GTDT, SPCR, MADT), UEFI implementation comparison.
  • 2018 Mar 31st: updated supported keyboard info.
  • 2018 Mar 1st: updated ATF to fix Ubuntu poweroff crash and add directions.
  • 2018 Feb 27th: updated ATF to fix overheat on SYSTEM_OFF.
  • 2018 Feb 26th: improved USB driver and HS support.
  • 2018 Feb 22nd: improved USB support for keyboards.
  • 2018 Jan 13th: updated build instructions, information on keyboards supported, added prebuilts.
  • 2017 Dec 26th: USB hotplug and keyboard support.
  • 2017 Dec 15th: Initial release.


Here is a comparison table between different available EFI firmware implementations for the RPi3.

Feature This Implementation Ard's Microsoft's U-Boot Minoca
Bitness 64-bit 64-bit 32-bit Either 32-bit
DT Yes Yes No Yes No
Pass-through DT Yes No N/A Yes No
ACPI Limited No Yes No Yes
Serial Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
HDMI GOP Yes No No Yes No
SMBIOS Yes No Yes No Yes
USB1 Limited No No Yes No
USB2/3 Yes No No Yes No
USB Mass Storage Yes No No Yes No
USB Keyboard Yes No No Yes No
Tiano Yes Yes Yes No No
Windows IoT No No Yes No No
AArch64 Linux Yes Limited No Yes No
AArch32 Linux No No No Yes No
AArch64 FreeBSD Yes No No Yes No
AArch32 Minoca No No No No Yes


Note: If you want to use the pre-built UEFI images, you can skip this section.

  1. Clone (last validated known-good SHA is c3cb333e097036764afe240b179056ab8e320071 (Mon Nov 20 15:34:17 2017 +0800)).

  2. Clone this repo.

  3. Apply the various patches against the edk2 tree. Yes, it sucks to have to do this, but this is a clearer way forward than forking every single Tiano driver that has a bug in it, or worse - carrying around an entire private fork of edk2. You're welcome to upstream these patches!

To avoid issues, apply using --ignore-whitespace. E.g.:

$ git am --ignore-whitespace ../RaspberryPiPkg/edk2Patches/0001-MmcDxe-fix-invalid-HC_MMC_CSD_GET_DEVICESIZE-computa.patch
  1. Run the following script to build. If you use a different GCC version, change accordingly, and adjust the compiler prefix to match your system - i.e. set GCC49_AARCH64_PREFIX if you're passing -t GCC49 to build.
export EDK_TOOLS_PATH=$WORKSPACE/edk2/BaseTools
export GCC5_AARCH64_PREFIX=aarch64-linux-gnu-

. $WORKSPACE/edk2/ BaseTools

build -b DEBUG -a AARCH64 -t GCC5 -p RaspberryPiPkg/RaspberryPiPkg.dsc
build -b RELEASE -a AARCH64 -t GCC5 -p RaspberryPiPkg/RaspberryPiPkg.dsc

If you want to build your own ATF, instead of using the checked-in binaries, follow the additional directions under Binary/atf/



UEFI boot media can be an SD card or USB mass storage, if you've enabled USB booting previously in the OTP (i.e. via program_usb_boot_mode=1).

UEFI boot media must be MBR partitioned and FAT32 formatted.

As a starting point, take the latest prebuilt image directories and copy to empty boot media. If you've built your own UEFI from source (e.g. $WORKSPACE/Build/RaspberryPiPkg-AARCH64/RELEASE_GCC5/FV/RPI_EFI.fd) you can simply now copy over and overwrite RPI_EFI.fd.

Note: You may not have a kernel.img (or kernelX.img, where X is a digit) in the root catalogue of the boot media. It will not boot.

The most basic config.txt contents are:


This will boot UEFI and expose a device tree that is compatible with openSUSE Leap 42.2/42.3, although it was found to work with Ubuntu 18.04 (Bionic Beaver) as well.

Of course use the debug variant (e.g. $WORKSPACE/Build/RaspberryPiPkg-AARCH64/DEBUG_GCC5/FV/RPI_EFI.fd) if necessary, but it will boot a lot slower due to the verbose spew.

HDMI and the mini-UART serial port can be used for output devices. Output is mirrored. USB keyboards and the mini-UART serial port can be used as input.

USB keyboard support has been validated with a few keyboards:

  • Logitech K750 (wireless)
  • Dell SK-8125 keyboard (with built-in hub)
  • Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000
  • An Apple keyboard (chicklet, USB2 hub)

The boot order is hardcoded to first be the USB ports and then the SD card. If there are no bootable media, you should be looking at the UEFI Shell. ESC enters setup. F1 always boots the UEFI Shell.


Note: you cannot boot 32-bit OSes like Raspbian with this firmware. Aw, shucks, right?

Custom Device Tree

Most likely, if you boot an OS other than openSUSE Leap 42.3, you will need to pass your own distro- and kernel- specific device tree. This will need to be extracted from the distributed media or from a running system (e.g that was booted via U-Boot).

This involves a few changes to the above config.txt:


Note: the address range must be [0x8000:0x10000). dtoverlay and dtparam parameters are also supported.

Custom bootargs

This firmware will honor the command line passed by the GPU via cmdline.txt.

Note, that the ultimate contents of /chosen/bootargs are a combination of several pieces:

  • Original /chosen/bootargs if using the internal DTB. Seems to be completely discarded by GPU when booting with a custom device tree.
  • GPU-passed hardware configuration. This one is always present.
  • Additional boot options passed via cmdline.txt.

openSUSE Leap 42.3

Download the Leap 42.3 RPi image first, from (e.g. openSUSE-Leap42.3-ARM-XFCE-raspberrypi3.aarch64-2017.07.26-Build1.1 was good).

  • dd image to media.
  • If booting UEFI from same media:

Login is root/linux. There is also a login available on the serial port.

Note: if your media is USB, after first boot you must follow these steps, or you will have an unbootable system after first reboot:

  • Edit the file /etc/dracut.conf.d/raspberrypi_modules.conf to include as its first line: add_drivers+=" bcm2835-sdhost bcm2835_dma sdhci_bcm2835 dwc2 usbnet uas usb_storage usbcore usb_common "
  • mkinitrd

You may choose to remove enable_uart=1 from config.txt to get your RPi3 to run at full speed.

Ubuntu (18.04 Bionic Beaver)

  • Download and write out to a USB stick.
  • Boot installer.
  • Install to another USB stick (SD slot is not available).
  • Enjoy. SD slot will be available as mmcblk0.

There is a device tree blob under, which you will need to use to if you want Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, but otherwise things seem to work just fine with the bundled openSUSE Leap 42.2 device tree.

Note: don't use DEBUG builds of ATF (e.g. DEBUG builds of UEFI) with Ubuntu, as the latter disables the mini-UART port, which the ATF relies on for logging. If you want to use a DEBUG build of UEFI, you must use a release version of ATF. Follow the directions under Binary/atf/

For Wi-Fi and BT there are a few more steps, as certain firmware files appear to be missing from the installation:

  • cd /lib/firmware/brcm/
  • wget
  • wget
  • apt-get install wireless-regdb

FreeBSD (r326622)

  • Download
  • Uncompress and dd to media.
  • If booting UEFI from same media:
  • If not booting UEFI from same media:

Now replace config.txt in the UEFI boot media with:


For a different (newer) release, you will need to look at the original config.txt.

This should boot to login prompt on HDMI with USB HID as the input. Login is root/root.

Note: you must remove dtoverlay=pi3-disable-bt, if present, from config.txt, as both ATF and UEFI rely on the mini-UART being initialized.

PL011 serial console in FreeBSD is not supported, yet.


If using additional MBR-partitioned devices aside from the UEFI boot media, mind the MBR disk identifier, if your system software is picky about that sort of thing.

Bugs in Implemented Functionality


  • MMC cards are untested.
  • Non-SDHC/SDXC are untested.
  • SD is slow as high-speed is not implemented.
  • No card removal/replacement detection, tons of timeouts and slow down during boot without an SD card present.


  • USB1 BBB mass storage devices untested (USB2 and USB3 devices are fine).
  • USB1 CBI mass storage devices don't work (e.g. HP FD-05PUB floppy).


  • Just SPCR, FADT, GTDT, BGRT, MADT (only describing CPU interfaces, not the GPU interrupt controller).

    Also, ACPI support is inherently a science project, as there is no standard way for doing ACPI on RPi3 (...custom interrupt controller). The only other ACPI implementations (MS-IoT and Minoca) are for 32-bit OSes and mutually incompatible. This will be a third mutually incompatible one ;-).

Missing Functionality

  • Network booting.
  • Ability to switch UART use to PL011.
  • Ability to switch SD card to the SdHostDxe driver.
  • Persisted EFI variables.


All of the code is BSD licensed, with the exception of:

  1. DwUsbHostDxe, which I've documented as being GPL 2.0 licensed, since it appears to be directly related to the U-Boot driver.


Andrey Warkentin

Btw, feel free to upstream, if so inclined.

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