Variscite now supports a new, highly demanded feature: Boot SPL and U-Boot from USB, using the imx_usb_loader utility.


This open-source utility software by Boundary Devices allows to download and execute code on NXP i.MX5/i.MX6/i.MX7 and Vybrid SoCs through the Serial Download Protocol (SDP).
Most commonly it is used as a replacement for NXP’s MFGTOOL to load U-Boot via the USB OTG port.

Recently, a new feature has been added to imx_loader and to U-Boot – they now support consecutive loading of SPL and U-Boot via the USB OTG port.
This new feature allows Variscite customers to enjoy the benefits of booting from USB, without missing out on the hardware modularity made possible by using SPL.

Who can benefit from this feature?

It’s worth noting that all Variscite SOMs are shipped with SPL and U-Boot pre-programmed on the SOM’s internal storage. In addition, all Variscite carrier boards have an SD card slot and allow the SOMs to be booted from an SD card (like Variscite’s recovery SD card).

Although this utility isn’t required by the majority of the Variscite customers, it provides a further method to boot Variscite’s SOMs.
A popular example of using this utility is when the customer’s board design doesn’t include an SD card slot:

  • Recovering from a ‘brick’ state (when SPL/U-Boot are accidentally removed from the SOM’s internal storage) on an end product.
  • When a customer wants to use a customized U-Boot of his own for his production process, instead of the default Variscite pre-programmed U-Boot or a customized U-Boot pre-programmed by Variscite.

This update applies to the following SOMs:

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