[UPDATE!!] The Via APC Rock – disappointing!

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APC Rock 8950

UPDATE: There is a working Linux-image for the APC Rock 8950 available now. Check my post “Finally a working Linux image for the APC Rock 8950” for downloads and info.


I got my APC Rock 8950 and must admit, I’m pretty disappointed so far. Although the hardware is quite good (though no comparison to the genius ODroid-X2!), the support by Via is extremely poor so far.

The main problem is that there is no working Linux image available for the APC Rock 8950 yet, and installing e.g. the Apricot image does not work, because it’s made for the predecessor, APC 8750.

In addition, it’s not possible to root the APC Rock 8950s preinstalled Android system. I’ve tried all avail. rooting tools, no luck. The rooting tutorial from the APC forums also won’t work, guess what? Yea, it’s been made for the APC 8750 and the differences are too big.

I’ll re-review this board once I find a working Linux image or at least a proper way to root the boards Android system, so I can install Linux embedded via the Linux Deploy app.

My advise: Get the APC 8750 if you don’t want to buy an Android-only singleboard-computer.

Specifications of the APC Rock 8950:

Model: Via APC Rock 8950
OS: Android 4.0 (PC System)
CPU: Chip VIA ARM Cortex-A9 @800Mhz Processor
Memory: DDR3 512MB Memory
Integrated storage: 4GB NAND Flash
Graphics: Built-in 2D/3D Graphic
Resolution up to 1080p
Input and Output: HDMI, VGA
Ports: 2x USB 2.0, 1x microUSB (OTG)
Audio out / Mic in
microSD Slot
Network: 10/100 Ethernet
Size: 170 x 85mm (W x H)

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4 Responses to [UPDATE!!] The Via APC Rock – disappointing!

  1. Well this is bad news, I was all excited because my board showed up today, now you got down ;-)

    Sill waiting on my ODroid-X2

    • Dunkel85 says:

      Yea, it’s very annoying. I’m also quite pissed off, wasted money on something I have much better on my tablet or smartphone.
      I’m checking the APC forums regularly to be informed of any working Linux image that comes available, and will post on my blog once I tested it.

      Unfortunately this will probably take a long time.
      APC/Via seems not to be interested in support of any kind, they just want to sell their boards.
      Any other SBC-board managed to do this much much better.

      My trials to compile a self-built buildroot image all failed,
      and mixing existing images with the bootloader+kernel from the APC rock also didn’t work.
      I’m now thinking there’s some kind of hardware or software limitation within the board, preventing Linux images from working at all / respectively letting one boot anything else than the original android firmware at all.

      Sad, sad! :(

      However, the ODroid-X2 – on the other hand – is really fun. More speed is not possible :D
      And the Debian image from http://hmastuff.com/blog/odroid-x2
      as well as the Ubuntu images from hardkernel forum/website work perfectly.



  2. mike says:

    apc rock is a arm 7 not 9 as advertised. the reason I bought it is because of various problems, I will try to navigate through it and report back.

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