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Linux (with Steam) on GPDWin handheld
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Julius 22 May, 2019

That is a one year old post that also never got substanciated... and anyways, the entire point is to wipe windows and thus also this "worm".

Stop spreading Windows snakeoil FUD and use Linux :)

Julius 8 Dec, 2019

The official Ubuntu-Mate 19.10 images for the GPD-Pocket work out of the box for the GPD Win1 as well:
https://ubuntu-mate.org/gpd-pocket/

Only problems I could find are that the touchscreen and SD cards bigger than 8GB aren't working, but that seems to be the case with all more recent stock Linux kernels.

You might still have to downgrade your BIOS though... didn't test that.

Last edited by Julius on 8 December 2019 at 1:02 pm UTC

Julius 8 Dec, 2019

Also found this:
https://github.com/steward-fu/gpdwin

The 4.18.0 Kernel .debs you can download as parts of the utils package work with Ubuntu and allow large SD card usage. Also no touchscreen support on my Ubuntu 18.04 installation with this Kernel though.

But KDE runs very nicely on the GPDWin was well, just made the switch. Less memory required than Gnome3.

greytega 29 Jan

Hey Julius,

I see you are still posting on this thread, I recently installed Ubuntu MATE on my GPD WIN 1 and pretty much everything works (even touch screen) great from their official GPD Pocket ISO, except the SD CARD reader. (Currently MATE 19.10)

I'm pretty new to linux and have not been able to update the Kernel to get this to work.

Ive tried online suggestions :
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

and running - uname –sr shows me Linux 5.3.0-29-generic.

if I go down to 4.18.0 Kernel would i lose functionality ?

I'm not quite sure I understand how or where to point this update command to look at a specific kernel that has these sdcard drivers.

any advice or guidance you can offer would be greatly appreciated.


Quoting: JuliusAlso found this:
https://github.com/steward-fu/gpdwin

The 4.18.0 Kernel .debs you can download as parts of the utils package work with Ubuntu and allow large SD card usage. Also no touchscreen support on my Ubuntu 18.04 installation with this Kernel though.

But KDE runs very nicely on the GPDWin was well, just made the switch. Less memory required than Gnome3.

Julius 29 Jan

Hmm, in that case my touchscreen might be broken :( Be careful with the display hinge, when I opened my GPDWin to replace the battery (highly recommended, the default one increases in size after a while) I noticed that it was completely broken and detached internally. I managed to somewhat fix it and loosen the hinge to have less pressure on it, but I guess the touchscreen is gone then...

Not sure if downgrading the Kernel will work, but I would guess yes as version 4.9 LTS is also still in the Ubuntu 19.10 repo. I am still using 18.04 on my GPDWin and there the modified 4.18 Kernel works great. Edit: I am on Mesa 19.2.8 display drivers. Really cutting edge Mesa versions will probably need a newer Kernel otherwise functionality should be pretty much the same.

To install it manually you need to use the "dpkg -i" command. Afterwards you need restart and check in the GRUB boot-menu if the correct kernel for booting is selected. It is likely that the default is the newer one, so if you want to boot into the one with the SD card fix you need to select it before booting.
I guess if everything goes well, you can just uninstall the newer default Kernel or look up how to change the GRUB boot order.

Last edited by Julius on 29 January 2020 at 6:00 pm UTC

greytega 29 Jan

Thanks Julius,

Ive watched some videos on updating the Kernel (Apologies, I come from a windows background so still early learning)

I still dont understand how to download/obtain the 4.9 LTS Kernel that has the SDCARD drivers and then 'install' them.

I assume I need the '.deb' files and then run the 'sudo dpkg -i kernelfilename.deb'

Then restart and edit GRUB, Is that right ?

So anyway, I looked here:
https://github.com/petrmatula190/gpd-pocket-kernel

But this looks to be the 2018 stuff ?
Should I just run the following :

git clone https://github.com/petrmatula190/gpd-pocket-kernel
cd gpd-pocket-kernel/
chmod +x install-kernel.sh build-kernel.sh
./install-kernel.sh

Then run this :

cd gpd-pocket-kernel/
git pull
./install-kernel.sh

Thanks for your help on this !

Julius 29 Jan

No compiling a Kernel might be a bit too complicated.

What I did was download the util.7z from here: https://github.com/steward-fu/gpdwin/releases/tag/v1.0

and extracted the two .deb files in there (linux-image and linux-headers something). Then I used dpkg to install first the headers and then the image (which is the kernel v4.18).

Afterwards restart and select the other kernel in GRUB.

Last edited by Julius on 29 January 2020 at 7:18 pm UTC

greytega 30 Jan

Hi Julius,

Thanks so much for all your help. After much work I was finally able to get the kernel installed, use Grub to switch to it under advanced settings and get the SDCARD formatted and detected.

Sadly though, it seems that using the 4.18 Kernel blows away the WiFi driver and screen brightness is set to 100% and trying many things in the GUI options does nothing to reduce the brightness.

Also, running updates or scanning for other hardware (using USB to Ethernet for internet) shows no driver for the wifi card.

I may have found a fix for the wifi but no idea what to do with the brightness.

Are you able to explain to me why the SDCARD driver has to be part of the kernel ? I mean, I don't understand why it can be a simple driver update or driver file that Windows would have ? I am not able to find much information about why this specifically and not other hardware devices have software drivers to better educate myself.

Thanks for all your help anyway.

Julius 30 Jan

Hmm, that is odd. WiFi and screen brightness work fine here. Maybe you got a newer hardware revision?

Linux is a monolithic Kernel system, meaning basically all drivers must be at least partially in the Kernel. In most cases that is a big advantage and the reason why it just works on so much diverse hardware. In this specific case sadly you see the downside of it.

Technically it is also just a bug that needs fixing. SD cards up to 8GB (32GB?) or so should work fine with the stock kernel.

Last edited by Julius on 30 January 2020 at 10:05 am UTC

greytega 5 Feb

Thanks for the explanation !

I did manage to get my hands on some 4, 8 & 16GB SD Cards but none of them are detected or at least, nothing seems to happen when I slot them in.

I tried sudo su fdisk -l , with and without the SD Card in the list is the same.

I did find this recent update/feature request
https://ubuntu-mate.community/t/gpd-pocket-image-with-gpdwin1/20740

Do you think this will be something that just gets patched into updates ?

Thanks for everything Julius.

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