How to install Mate Desktop with Debian Stretch on a Pine64 A+

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I recently started working on my Pine64 again and while bringing up a new Debian stretch image with a desktop, was hit with the below errors while running the install_desktop.sh script :

Package chromium-browser is not available, but is referred to by another package .
This may mean that the package is missing, has been obsoleted, or
is only available from another source

Package glmark2-es2 is not available, but is referred to by another package.
This may mean that the package is missing, has been obsoleted, or
is only available from another source

E: Package 'glmark2-es2' has no installation candidate
E: Package 'chromium-browser' has no installation candidate

and

The following packages have unmet dependencies:
 xserver-xorg-video-armsoc-sunxi : Depends: xorg-video-abi-20 but it is not installable
 xserver-xorg-video-fbturbo : Depends: xorg-video-abi-20 but it is not installable
E: Unable to correct problems, you have held broken packages.

Image I burned on the SD card was this: stretch-minimal-pine64-bspkernel-0.7.30-140.img.xz
from //github.com/ayufan-pine64/linux-build/releases

I was able to successfully install the Mate Desktop Environment with below solution. These steps are not mentioned anywhere and I had to do some digging around to get it straight. So I am going to post them here for anyone looking in future.

  • If you have just booted up a fresh Pine64 installation, then just do the usual housekeeping and updating stuff:
cd /usr/local/sbin/

# by running 

df -h

# check if your sd card is resized to utilize full capacity, if not run

./pine64_first_boot.sh

# then run the image update scripts: 

sudo ./pine64_update_kernel.sh 0.7.30

# reboot once complete

sudo ./pine64_update_uboot.sh 0.7.30

# reboot once complete

sudo ./pine64_update_package.sh 0.7.30

# reboot once complete

# with sudo, just do 

apt-get update && apt-get upgrade

# reboot once done.
  • Once rebooted, start with the desktop environment installation where we had the errors listed at the top of this post.
cd /usr/local/sbin/
vi install_desktop.sh mate

# and under section: # Default packages.  comment following lines:

#       xserver-xorg-video-fbturbo
#       xserver-xorg-video-armsoc-sunxi
#       glmark2-es2
#       chromium-browser

# save the file and exit. (:wq!)
sudo apt-get install git build-essential xorg-dev xutils-dev x11proto-dri2-dev
sudo apt-get install libltdl-dev libtool automake libdrm-dev
mkdir /home/pine64/install-desktop
cd /home/pine64/install-desktop
git clone //github.com/ssvb/xf86-video-fbturbo.git
cd xf86-video-fbturbo
autoreconf -vi
./configure --prefix=/usr
make
sudo make install
cp xorg.conf /etc/X11/   ###(if  /etc/X11/xorg.conf  already exists then back it up)
  • Finally, again cd /usr/local/sbin and run
./install_desktop.sh mate

This can take an hour or so and may seem forever. Once the installation completes, reboot the Pine64 and you should have a Desktop up and running. Mine looks like this.

Hope this helps you guys dealing with your Pine64 Desktop UI installation. Comment below and let me know if you face any issues and or have any suggestions to ease this.

Amogh Desai

Amogh Desai

A System Admin by profession, is a tech buff and a licensed Amateur Radio operator with callsign VU3DES. He is interested in Technology, Amateur radio, Electronics home-brewing, FOSS, Photography and everything tech. He uses this blog to share his views and ideas with people sharing similar interests.
Amogh Desai
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