ROCK Pi E >  Getting started

This guide is designed for ROCK Pi E enthusiast. The purpose is to learn about the ROCK Pi E board as well as how to prepare and set up for basic use. When you get a board, you need to know what Pi model it is and which hardware version it is. The information is printed in the top side of the board. We will introduce the board information as much as possible.

What you need


  • ROCK Pi E main board
  • One of the Storage media below:
    • μSD card, larger than 8GB.
    • eMMC Module, larger than 8GB with eMMC to μSD converter board.
  • Power supply
    • The ROCK Pi E is powered by adapter with type C port and 5V only. If you power adapter supports USB PD, it's safe to power ROCK Pi E.
  • USB to TTL serial cable
    • ROCK Pi E exports a dedicated serial console, which can access the low level debug message.


  • μSD Card Reader
    • For flashing the image into μSD Card or eMMC Module.
  • Ethernet cable
    • ROCK Pi E supports Internet access via WiFi or Ethernet.
    • One or two Ethernet cable are used to connect your ROCK Pi E to a local network and the Internet.
  • Audio cable
    • Audio can be played through speaker or headphones using a standard 3.5mm jack.

Close look of ROCK Pi E

  • ROCK Pi E front view


  • ROCK Pi E front with an angle view


  • ROCK Pi E back view



Model ROCK Pi E
Processor SoC RK3328
Quad Cortex-A53 ARM 64bits processor
frequency up to 1.3GHz
Memory 256MB / 512MB / 1GB / 2GB DDR3
Storage MicroSD(TF) up to 128GB
High performance eMMC module 16GB / 32GB / 64GB / 128GB
Wireless 802.11 b/g/n wifi
Bluetooth 4.0(rtl8723bu)
external antenna
USB USB3.0 Type-A HOST x1
Key Reset x1
Ethernet 1x 1000Mbit ethernet, optional PoE(additional HAT required)
1x 100Mbit ethernet
IO 40-pin expansion header
USB 2.0 x1
I2C x1
SPI x1
I2S x1
5V DC power in x2
3.3V DC power in x2
Others RTC connector, LEDs
Power USB Type-C DC 5V
Size 2.5x2.2 inch(56x65mm)

Starting the board for the first time

ROCK Pi E can be started with eMMC or μSD Card. Now, you are presented with two options when installing your new operating system onto your ROCK Pi E.


  • When start system with eMMC

Insert eMMC Module into eMMC to μSD card converter board. Insert the converter board into μSD Card Reader, which connects to host computer.

  • When start system with μSD Card

Insert the μSD Card into μSD Card Reader, which connects to host computer.

Write Image

  • Download the flash tool, etcher, from Downloads. Choose the right version for your host operation system. Here we operate on host Ubuntu 16.04.
  • After unpacking the package, we run the tool by executing the command
$ ./etcher-etcher-electron-1.4.5-x86_64.AppImage

If you get an error message: "No polkit authentication agent found" you can try and start it with sudo, but do know that this is running the tool as root.

  • In the etcher window, click Select image.

Linux etcher select image.png

  • In the etcher window, click Select Drive.

Linux etcher select driver.png

  • In the etcher window, click Flash.

Linux etcher select flash button.png

  • In the etcher window, once it shows us Flash Complete! It is done and can be put into the RockPi.

Linux etcher show complete.png


  • Now insert system storage media, eMMC Module or uSD card into the socket on board.
  • Use the USB to TTL serial cable to setup a connection between PC and ROCK Pi E board. See Serial Console.
  • Connect the power supply to the ROCK Pi E. The board will begin to immediately. (You might not see the boot sequence, on Ubuntu Server you will see the login prompt)

Wish you good luck!