Alpine Install: from a disc to PC Engines APU

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Overall description: Alpine Installation from an official image tar file downloaded to a real second generation PC Engines APU systems (apu2, apu3, apu4), where it will be single OS only.

This document will guide you to install Alpine into second generation PC Engines APU systems, it was tested with an apu2d4 and Alpine 3.11.6.. For others ways to install see at the Alpine_newbie_install_manual


  • BIOS: it's a system into computer hardware machine laptop or desktops, embedded that will manage the early boot process, see more in the Alpine and UEFI page.
  • New machine: will be your real machine fresh and ready to install your new Alpine operating system, with an installed ISO image where to put the downloaded media installation.
  • Bootable USB: will be your hardware drive input to put the image downloaded iso media with the operating system Alpine to install as source media; this drive are commonly named USB unit.
  • Serial console: is an input port on the device.. DB9 serial port for serial console, located at the board to use as char device, it's common in those devices.
  • Source media: will be the just burned / disc from the downloaded iso file of Alpine operating system. Will be Attach to the serial console to property boot the source disc as media installation.
  • Target media: will be the storage medium device into the new computer target where the Alpine files for operating system will be installed, its one partition from the HardDisk of the new computer.

Booting the Alpine ISO disc

  1. It's probably a good idea to ensure that the BIOS / Firmware is up to date.
  2. Create_a_Bootable_USB thumb drive with the current standard x86_64 image from the downloads page.
  3. Attach to the serial console. Configure your terminal emulator for 115200 8n1.
  4. Power on the APU.
  5. When BIOS prompted, hit F10 and select to boot from USB.
  6. At the boot prompt, quickly type a slash to interrupt the default boot, which has a short timeout.
  7. Continue entering the remainder of this command at your leisure. It should have only one slash at the start, to be clear: /boot/vmlinuz-lts modules=loop,squashfs,sd-mod,usb-storage nomodeset console=ttyS0,115200 initrd=/boot/initramfs-lts
  8. Alpine should come up as normal.

Normal setup/install process

After boot up, you will see a command line shell of a complete ready to use Alpine

Note: This process WORKS BEST with recent versions of "STANDARD" file image downloads. Older alpine images (for Rpi, IBM etc) will have some issues, we recommend always use lasted

Login as root

Log in as root and press enter. No password will be asked for if you're running from the boot image.


Running setup alpine script

Run the setup-alpine script as shown in the image:

Select keyboard layout

Choose your keyboard layout. If you don't know your keyboard layout, choose us. Typically, for a Latin American environment, es is enough. For Russian (and maybe Cyrilic) ru is sufficient.


Select keyboard variant

Choose your keyboard variant. If you don't know your keyboard variant, choose the default from the list. For example, the typical Latin American keymap is es-winkeys.


Enter system hostname

Host name, which will be the name of your computer. using localhost is enough and recommended for testing purposes because permits apply mostly to how-tos and tutorials on the wiki pages.


Initialize network cards

Choose your network card. Typically, you can just go with the default (press enter), a second question will ask about any other configuration. Type "no" then press enter to bypass the step to property set up after installation finished property.


IMPORTANT NOTE: mostly in x86 and x64 ISO images we can let configurations for later, cos at the most modern the network card, the lest supported or still not well tested. Just type done and press enter. If you configured the wired interface, another question will be asked, use dhcp? Most people will use DHCP, so press enter again. If you have Internet connection from ISP, most settings are just DHCP, so all will be configured automatically.

Initialize network DNS

The DNS will be automatically detected, if not, you will be asked ask for the server addresses. Type "" (empty string) for domain, then press enter. Later you can change it to (or the DNS server address of your choice) as shown in the picture. Press enter to go to the next question:


Changing the root password

Next a root password must be defined. You'll need to type it twice for confirmation as the picture shows. If it's too short you will get a warning, but your password will still work. Just retype it and go.

Note: when you type, NO chars will be shown.


Which timezone to choose?

Select a timezone, just press enter to use UTC when perform a single installation.


Proxy chooser

Then setup script will ask for proxy chooser.. just type none and then press enter


Enter mirror number

Then setup script will ask for repository mirror chooser.. just type done and then press enter, this will be configure many times later during usage of the system. Almost any tutorial of newbie pages will explain detailed so lest bypass using "done".


Which ssh server?

Installing an SSH server enables you to manage your machine remotely. OpenSSH is what the big distros use. Dropbear is a tiny SSH replacement. Recommended to type openssh and then press enter, because you able to connect using command line from Unix-like systems also is the offline available in all alpine installer images. Installation-alpine-alpine-setup-9-setup-scripts-ssh.png

Which NTP client to run?

This is for time sync. Press enter to use the image offline. It can be changed after installation.


Which disk choose to use?

To choose the disk destination ..

How would be used?

Then choose type of installation .. those are described at Setup modes section at Alpine setup scripts wiki page. "sys" mode is the familiar install to disk well known for usage as main OS to computers.

After all a confirmation question will raised, type "y" if everything are ok and the setup will proceed to erase, format and copy the files to the destination disk choose!

After reboot

  1. Before rebooting, edit /boot/extlinux.conf.
    1. Add SERIAL 0 115200 as the first line in the file.
    2. In the APPEND line, replace quiet with console=ttyS0,115200
  2. Remove the thumb drive.
  3. Cross your fingers and reboot. The system should boot properly with console on serial.
  4. Edit /etc/update-extlinux.conf so that if extlinux.conf is regenerated it will retain these settings:
    1. Update the line with serial_port to read serial_port=0
    2. Update the serial_baud line to read serial_baud=115200
    3. Update the default_kernel_opts line to replace quiet with console=ttyS0,115200
  5. Run update-extlinux
  6. Examine /boot/extlinux.conf.
    1. Make sure it looks OK. Compare with /boot/extlinux.conf-old.
    2. If something looks wrong, mv /boot/extlinux.conf-old /boot/extlinux.conf to roll back the changes and try to figure out what went wrong
  7. Cross your fingers and reboot. The system should boot properly with console on serial.

Documents series

Previous required What's next to read
Alpine newbie install manual Alpine newbie apk packages

See Also

  1. Newbie_Alpine_Ecosystem
  2. Alpine and UEFI
  3. Alpine newbie apk packages
  4. Alpine newbie desktops
  5. Alpine newbie developer
  6. Alpine newbie lammers

es:Alpine Instalar: de un disco a una nueva computadora arrancar un solo sistema