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Upgrade BeagleV-Fire Gateware#

This document describes how to upgrade your BeagleV-Fire’s gateware. This approach can be used out of the box using Linux commands executed on BeagleV-Fire

Required Equipment#

  • BeagleV-Fire board

  • USB-C cable

  • Ethernet cable

The USB-C cable provides power, a serial interface to BeagleV-Fire and allows connecting to BeagleV-Fire through a browser using IP address

The Ethernet cable connected to your local network (LAN) allows connecting to BeagleV-Fire using the SSH protocol. It also allows BeagleV-Fire to retrieve updated packages through your local network’s Internet connection.

Connect to BeagleV-Fire Linux Command Line Interface#

BeagleV-Fire boots Linux out of the box. Like all Beagleboard boards there are several methods to get BeagleV-Fire’s Linux command prompt.

  • Cockpit

  • SSH

  • Serial port


Enter the following URL in your web browser: https://beaglev.localdomain:9090/

On first use, click through the security warning. Login using beagle/temppwd as user/password. Click on Terminal in the left pane. You now have a Linux command prompt running on your BeagleV-Fire. Next step: enter the commands described in the Gateware Upgrade Linux Commands section of this document.


You can connect to the Cockpit using the IP address dynamically assigned to your BeagleV-Fire in your local Ethernet network. One method of finding the value of that dynamically assigned IP address is to open a serial terminal though the USB port and use the ip address Linux command. Please refer to the USB Serial Port section.


Like all Beagleboard boards, you can SSH to the board through the USB interface by using IP address


On Windows, this approach may require some drivers to be updated or installed. Use one of the other approaches if you are not immediately successful with this one. You can circle back later to adjust your Windows installation if required.

Serial Port#

A serial port is available through the USB-C port. This serial port becomes available once Linux has booted on BeagleV-Fire. Please wait a couple of minutes after powering up the board before looking for additional serial ports reported by your host computer’s operating system. You can then use your favorite serial port terminal tool such as Putty or Screen to access the BeagleV-Fire Linux command prompt.

For example on your Linux host computer:

screen /dev/ttyACM0 115200

Where ttyACM0 is an additional serial port that appeared after BeagleV-Fire was connected to your Linux host computer. This serial port can be identified using the dmesg | grep tty Linux command which will show the most recent serial port added to the host computer.

On Windows, BeagleV-Fire’s serial port number will show in the Windows Device Manager. Use that serial port number in Putty with a speed 115200 baud, no flow-control.

Gateware Upgrade Linux Commands#


BeagleV-Fire needs to be connected to the internet through your local network for the commands in this section to work. The connection can be through the Ethernet port or the Wi-Fi module.

Install bbb.io-gateware#

You need to install the bbb.io-gateware package. This will allow retrieving the most up-to-date gateware.

sudo apt install bbb.io-gateware

Retrieve Available Updated Linux packages List#

The list will include the latest BeagleV-Fire gateware packages.

sudo apt update

Upgrade Linux Packages#

This will upgrade the BeagleV-Fire gateware Linux programming files located under /usr/share/beagleboard/gateware. Several directories are found in that location, each containing programming files for one individual gateware configuration.

sudo apt upgrade

Launch Reprogramming of BeagleV-Fire’s FPGA#

Change directory to /usr/share/beagleboard/gateware. This directory contains a script performing the gateware’s reprogramming. It also contains one directory for each of the possible gateware configuration that can be programmed into your BeagleV-Fire. The name of one of these directories is passed as argument to the script to specify which gateware configuration you wish to program your BeagleV-Fire with.

cd /usr/share/beagleboard/gateware
. ./change-gateware.sh default


Do not power-off BeagleV-Fire until it has rebooted by itself. The gateware reprogramming may take a couple of minutes.

The change-gateware script programs the selected gateware and its associated device tree overlays into the PolarFire SoC System Controllers SPI flash and triggers a software reboot. During the reboot, the Hart Software Services (HSS) will request the PolarFire SoC System Controller to reprogram the FPGA and eNVM. The PolarFire SoC System Controller will reprogram the FPGA if it finds it contains a different design version than the one in the SPI Flash. The board reboots on completion of the FPGA reprogramming.