Linux 6.10 To Add Script For Building ARM64 Flat Image Trees

Written by Michael Larabel in Arm on 17 April 2024 at 06:10 AM EDT. 1 Comment
Queued as part of the ARM64 patches in the various "-next" branches ahead of the Linux 6.10 merge window is a script for being able to build Flat Image Trees (FITs). A Flat Image Tree is the compiled Linux kernel paired with the associated DeviceTree content that is compressed and easily then distributed and executed by capable bootloaders.

The Flat Image Tree images can be booted by U-Boot, LinuxBoot, Coreboot, and others as a single file containing the compiled kernel with necessary DeviceTree for supported hardware. Flat Image Trees are not an entirely new phenomenon but with Linux 6.10 there is a Python script being added "" for generating a Flat Image Tree as well as a new "make" target for the mainline Linux kernel for easily building a FIT.

Simon Glass with Google's Chromium team contributed this Flat Image Tree build target support for the kernel. With this integration to be upstreamed, it makes it more effortless to compile an upstream kernel and build out a FIT that can then be easily loaded on a supported ARM64 board via TFTP for quick deployments/testing.

ARM boards

The Flat Image Tree specification for those interested can be found via GitHub. Flatted Image Trees were started by U-Boot with more details also via the U-Boot documentation.

The Flat Image Tree build target support is currently residing within ARM64's for-next/kbuild branch ahead of the Linux 6.10 merge window opening in mid-May.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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