Install Ubuntu on the Orange Pi Zero

Install Ubuntu Core

We will walk you through the steps of flashing Ubuntu Core on an Orange Pi Zero. At the end of this process, you will have a board ready for production or testing snaps.

Minimum requirements

  • An Ubuntu SSO account with an SSH key
  • An Orange Pi Zero
  • A microSD card
  • A USB to TTL Serial Cable
  • An Ethernet cable (for first setup)
  • A 5V power supply rated at 2 amps and a cable with a micro USB plug
  • screen installed on your host computer (sudo apt install screen)

Installation instructions

  1. 1 Setup an Ubuntu SSO account

    An Ubuntu SSO account is required to create the first user on an Ubuntu Core installation.

    1. Start by creating an Ubuntu SSO account.
    2. Import an SSH Key into your Ubuntu SSO account. (instructions)
  2. 2 Download Ubuntu Core

    Get the correct Ubuntu Core image for your board:

  3. 3 Flash the microSD card

    Copy the Ubuntu image on the microSD card by following the installation media instructions.

  4. 4 Install Ubuntu Core

    1. Insert the SD card into the board.
    2. Connect the Ethernet cable to the board and to the network.
    3. Connect the TTL end of the TTL to USB cable, to the three pins next to the Ethernet port. On this diagram, they are identified by the label "Debug serial port". The pin layout is, from the outside to the inside:
      • GND (black wire)
      • RX (white wire)
      • TX (green wire)
    4. Connect the USB end of the cable into your host computer, open a terminal and run sudo screen /dev/ttyUSB0 115200 to open a listening connection to the board.
    5. Power on the board. The terminal on your host computer should display the boot sequence. If not, please ensure the TTL to USB cable is correctly connected.
  5. 5 First boot setup

    1. The system will boot then become ready to configure.
    2. The device will display the prompt “Press enter to configure”.
    3. Press enter then select “Start” to begin configuring your network and an administrator account. Follow the instructions on the screen, you will be asked to configure your network and enter your Ubuntu SSO credentials.
    4. At the end of the process, you will see your credentials to access your Ubuntu Core machine:

      This device is registered to <Ubuntu SSO email address>.
      Remote access was enabled via authentication with the SSO user <Ubuntu SSO user name>
      Public SSH keys were added to the device for remote access.
  6. 6 Login

    Once setup is done, you can login with SSH into Ubuntu Core, from a machine on the same network, using the following command:

    ssh <Ubuntu SSO user name>@<device IP address>

    Your user name is your Ubuntu SSO user name, it has been reminded to you at the end of the account configuration step.

First boot tips

  • During setup, console-conf will download the SSH key registered with your Store account and configure it so you can log into the device via ssh <Ubuntu SSO account name>@<device IP address> without a password.
  • There is no default ubuntu user on these images, but you can run sudo passwd <account name> to set a password if you need a local console login.

Get started with snaps

Your board is now ready to have snaps installed, it's time to use the snap command to install your first snap.

The Snap Store is where you can find the best Linux apps packaged as snaps to install on your Ubuntu Core device and get started with your secure IoT journey.

Before you start, get your IoT security story straight

A recent Canonical survey of 2,000 consumers suggests that a shockingly high percentage of connected devices may be vulnerable to botnets, hackers and cyber attacks:

  • Only 31% of consumers update the firmware on their connected devices as soon as updates become available.
  • 40% of consumers have never performed firmware updates on their connected devices
  • 40% of consumers believe that performing firmware updates on their connected devices is the responsibility of either software developers or the device manufacturer
  • Country:
  • All information provided will be handled in accordance with the Canonical privacy policy.