Reflash your iHost with your own Linux distribution

Hi everyone,

Days ago I found a topic from @cliff

I contacted some people who received the device and posted a review/tutorial, they gave me some information, and I successfully flash a clean Linux system with pre-installed drivers and utility software into iHost.

Note: DO NOT do this to your iHost if you’re not a developer, once you have flashed in a third-party firmware, you will not be able to go back.

Here’s my process:

  1. Use a type-c cable to connect iHost to your PC
    (keep the Ethernet cable on iHost connected to your router, now the PC powers up the iHost)

  2. Enter MaskROM mode

In the eWeLink app go to iHost, choose the … menu in upper right corner (device settings).
Tap on device-id for 7 times. You’ll see the MaskROM mode entrance.
Once enabled, you will see the LED indicators turn green.

  1. Install the driver on your PC and open the official RockChip developer tool
    (I found it here: Files · master · rockchip / tools · GitLab )

The tool will show like Found One MASKROM device

Select Upgrade Firmware-Upgrade-select the firmware

Click Upgrade and wait until the Success info

the default ssh login info:
username root
password aibridge

I am in the process of organizing the information of the linux distribution I flashed in, and I will post a separate post later to introduce in detail.

new post here: RV1109RV1126-Linux-iHost-Hardware-Distribution

Edit 2023.05.31
Files I used: iHost Flash - Google Drive


Love it. Thanks! I got the iHost to
a.) play around a bit and then
b.) set up a basic Smart Home environment for a friend (preferably Home Assistant)
And since I am a user, not a developer, I am a bit reluctant to experiment with the device and permanently close the door for future updates of this system. But I am very interested and will follow this closely. And if another Linux distribution turns out to be the better platform for a working HA environment, I will gladly follow.

:+1: :+1:

Does the “Download” tab of the Rockchip tool download the installed firmware of the iHost to your PC?If so then this can be a great way to backup the original firmware and to be able to revert to the original firmware when needed. Can someone confirm that this indeed can be performed succesfully?

Unfortunately I cannot confirm or deny anything - I can just assume:
You might be able to reinstall the original firmware, but enabling MaskROM probably sets a flag for the iHost and it won’'t be elligible for future updates. At least that is what happens with the NSPanel Pro. You can enable adb and then sideload Android apps.

Afterwards you can no longer receive OTA updates. (However, you could install releases manually, if you can get hold of them).


I have the problem with my Nspanel Pro . I have ADB turned on and now couldn’t get OTA upgrades. My NsPanel has firmware v1.4.0 but I have second one with firmware v1.8.0
How it is possible upgrade my old firmware with ADB switched on??
How I can do this manually

How did you turn ADB on?

You can’t upgrade after eWeLink detected you have ADB turned on. Not even manually. It violates the principles of open source Android, but eWeLink doesn’t care about those principle of Android.

By the way: this topic is about the iHost. NSPanel Pro is offtopic here.

On my ewelink App .
With firmware 1.4.0 I can’t evan transfer my devices between screens.
There is no idea to downlad or flash this panel? Now it is useless

Try to contact SONOFF support

Not sure what I’m doing wrong here.

Any ideas?

Try these:

Not an expert, but did you enable the MaskROM mode for the iHost in the ewelink app? Tap on device-id for the iHost 7 times.

Just a question, maybe for @JordanWise
Would you happen to know the path to the Zigbee controller on iHost?

That didn’t work either. gets to 100% then Download Firmware Fail

I’m well past that point - trying to upload the new firmware

However, it did load it in LOADER mode rather than MaskROM

Any success?

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I have got linux running but can’t access the device via ssh (password issue) nor can I get a display to work to try to access locally.