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Has anybody successfully installed Fedora on a tablet? Or anything with an arm processor?

asked 2014-07-20 12:03:53 -0500

Ervin gravatar image

updated 2014-07-21 08:49:01 -0500

mether gravatar image

I just wonder if anybody has used the Fedora for Arm version and would like to hear how it worked out. And some guiding about it.

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answered 2014-07-21 01:41:48 -0500

abadrinath gravatar image

updated 2014-08-11 01:48:42 -0500

I have not personally installed it on an ARM processor, but it certainly is available:

BTW, the tablet that you are going to install Fedora on has to be rooted, so that Fedora can put in its own bootloader.

Here is a bunch of links/tutorials about installing Linux (usually Fedora) on a tablet (usually Android):

Try installing from

Some Android apps that could help: COSTS MONEY

Post-install recommendations:

Here are some pieces of advice to you after you've successfully installed Fedora, or for that matter another distro (possibly Ubuntu Touch or OpenSuse):

  • Do not choose a heavy desktop manager (e.g. KDE). Go for XFCE, LXDE, Mate, Cinnamon, etc.
  • Minimalize the Fedora install (for example, remove abrt and plymouth)
  • Don't install desktop themes
  • Don't run too many processes at once
  • Use a lightweight version of a program (e.g. Midori vs Firefox)
  • Run ps aux when on battery and kill unnecessary programs when on battery
  • Use a USB Keyboard

AskFedora similar questions:

If you're reluctant or worried about your device, do not do this. Not many people have tried this before and while it is a pretty widely-known idea, not many people try it.

Yup, as @boyd said, use this link for instructions: . Remember, though, this has not been done by many people, and your specific device may be unsupported.

HTH, James :)

PS: Don't worry if you can't install Fedora. Check out Ubuntu Touch, it's almost as good ;)

EDIT: Ha, I successfully installed Fedora 20 with all updates on my new HP Chromebook using these instructions: . I have tested this completely and removed the Google OS (I don't really like it very much). It runs XFCE, and looks pretty good, IMO.

Update: I have confirmed that Fedora 20 works completely (went a week without crashing) on a HP Butterfly Chromebook . It has recognized all my hardware out of the box, my audio, video, microphone, touchscreen, buttons on keyboard. I actually have to say I am pretty impressed with Fedora20 on my chromebook.

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There is a spin for ARM now, which can be downloaded from here.

rbuj gravatar imagerbuj ( 2015-04-12 10:52:42 -0500 )edit

answered 2014-07-20 16:19:06 -0500

boyd gravatar image

Had good success installing Fedora 19 on a Samsung Chromebook using these instructions:

Only issue was after running a yum update, the wireless nic would no longer connect. Had to reinstall. (I did this twice) I do see the Fedora 20 is now available there so it may be possible to update the system without toasting the networking.

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off topic- Did you try reinstalling the driver?

abadrinath gravatar imageabadrinath ( 2014-07-21 05:00:56 -0500 )edit

answered 2015-01-25 17:18:44 -0500

this post is marked as community wiki

This post is a wiki. Anyone with karma >750 is welcome to improve it.

My daily phone and my only personal PC laptop is Fedora 21 on my phablet 6.44 inch screen (arm cpu, phone is by sony).

Instruction is , there is a pending patent device that turns the phone into a laptop. The arm phone is actually an EJB server that runs a simplified fiber infrared engineering software application 24x7.

I am not 12 years old (sadly) or having much time (sadly) in maintaining a phone and a PC/laptop for my own use.

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If I'm reading this right, this is another method for running $distro userspace in a chroot then connecting with a vnc server, right? Not installing Fedora on the device natively?

randomuser gravatar imagerandomuser ( 2015-01-25 18:07:45 -0500 )edit

Not VNC server/viewer. No VNC app on the phablet. It is a native X server of the arm machine called XSDL by pelya. All natural...native.

I don't have time (sadly) to maintain a VNC server/viewer on top of a simplest possible personal PC/laptop. I am not 12 years old (sadly).

jcg1541 gravatar imagejcg1541 ( 2015-01-26 12:32:32 -0500 )edit

I don't know what your age has to do with anything, but that's pretty cool functionality :)

randomuser gravatar imagerandomuser ( 2015-01-26 13:18:03 -0500 )edit

answered 2015-08-18 13:11:52 -0500

I was thinking of trying Sugar-On-A-Stick (Fedora 22 based Sugar Learning Platform booted from USB) on the Nexus 7. Does that sound like something that would work?

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Would not work. No way a usb stick running fedora 22 would "work". What is your day job? If you are a professional software engineer, you would have 5 different sticks at work, and your co-workers need your help reinstalling 5 different evaluation applications that expire every 30-60 days from 5 different commercial companies. You save your own project code on 3 different sticks, and 2 other sticks have fedora 22 live images, one with EFI partition removed, the other does not. Which stick should you put Sugar? You put it on the first stick to overwrite the EFI preserved stick. But your exam is

jcg1541 gravatar imagejcg1541 ( 2016-01-09 13:01:43 -0500 )edit

And your child gets sick at school so you need to leave work early to get him to the hospital. Your train to the testing center is leaving in 5 minutes, the train station is 2 minutes walking from the hospital. So you walk to the train, with 3 minutes idle to check your Pi. And where is your first stick? Not in your packet? It is too late. Wait, you have the second stick in your pocket. But, you don't have a x86 pc to erase the EFI partition!

jcg1541 gravatar imagejcg1541 ( 2016-01-09 13:04:23 -0500 )edit

The only way fedora 22 works with arm is when you put it in your phone that you carry with you 24x7. You put it next to your pillow next to your pistol. And when you wake up, whether you remember to pick up your pistol, you remember to put the phone in your jean pocket. You go to work with the phone with fedora 22, you drive to your son's school with the fedora 22 in your phone, and you walk to the train with the fedora 22 in your phone. And you study your professional exam on the train with tmobile 4g lte with you fedora 22 phone! You do have a day job? Don't you?

jcg1541 gravatar imagejcg1541 ( 2016-01-09 13:07:48 -0500 )edit

answered 2015-03-15 01:13:11 -0500

jcg1541 gravatar image

If I may comment, I believe chroot is a better solution than a kernel boot. I have made mistakes and messed up my Java EJB server in the chroot of my phablet many times, and, with the chroot solution, I have simply erase the entire chroot directory and extract my chroot from tar file and recovered the entire fedora system in 3 minutes flat.

I don't believe any one can reinstall a fedora of kernel boot in less than 20 minutes, including installing a full SQL based application server.

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answered 2016-02-13 06:35:18 -0500

pbrobinson gravatar image

As the tech lead on Fedora ARM I can answer these questions. I'll split the response into two:

Or anything with an ARM processor?

With Fedora 23 GA we support around 150 devices covering around 20 specific ARM SoCs, some devices better are better tested than others. They are wide ranging devices from primarily SBCs (Single Board Computers) to numerous other form factors. The best device to choose will depend a little on how you wish to use it. We've also had numerous reports of other devices working with a custom kernel using the Fedora ARM user space.

Has anybody successfully installed Fedora on a tablet?

Yes! is the short answer. The real answer is a lot more long winded though. We don't currently focus on tablets as a Fedora ARM category primarily because there's not a packaged up Fedora desktop environment that has a good tablet user experience, in fact while there's been a number of efforts over the years I'm not aware of any open source Linux UX (android and derivatives aside) that works well in pure tablet mode.

The easiest devices to install it on a get it to work are a couple of the cheap, around $50 depending on where you buy them from, AllWinner tablets. There are literally 100s of variants of these on the market but the vast majority of them are all based on a handful of mainboards which are then just packaged up in slightly different cases. They're completely unlocked down and you can literally write out a Fedora ARM image to (micro)SD card plug it in and have it boot. The main issue with these cheap AllWinner tablets is that we don't have accelerated graphics due to their closed source GPUs so the best experience is to run a desktop such as XFCE or Sugar which doesn't require 3D acceleration. Most of the hardware is now supported in Fedora but your mileage may vary with these devices as they tend to change randomly.

There have also been reports of people running fully accelerated Fedora on Qualcomm tablet devices such as Nexus 7 using the freedreno open source GPU driver. This requires a lot more work and experience from the people that wish to do this because it requires rooting the device, using a non standard bootloader, generally a custom kernel and a vanilla Fedora userspace. It's certainly not for the faint of heart but I've heard it's a good experience once it's running. This is very much a case of you are on your own and all the people I know to have done it are mostly kernel or low level developers with a good understanding of the Qualcomm boot architecture.

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answered 2015-10-17 07:12:34 -0500

choufleur gravatar image

I installed fedora 22 arm on a Banana pi. I am quite enthusiastic about the result, even if there remain some issues and bugs. It is much better than the outdated (not my fault !) raspbian I used before.

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Asked: 2014-07-20 12:03:53 -0500

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Last updated: Mar 15 '15