Can I still salvage this S10 Mini?

I have an S10 Mini Amlogic S905W Android TV box, fyi there is no stock Android image to flash back onto this thing that I could find.

I’m not particularly interested on running Android on it anyways, so I did a few things to it:

  • Tried running Armbian from the SD card, and then installed to the internal NAND/eMMC which it was able to boot into without SD card.
  • Tried booting from SD again and I did something to the eMMC that caused it to no longer be bootable anymore (I think I may have cp -ed an Armbian .img to the eMMC), at this point I thought I “bricked” it
  • Followed an online guide to create bootable SD card with an Android .img, Link to guide
  • Managed to boot with Aidan’s ROM for the S905W up to the loading screen, but did not boot into Android after waiting for several minutes, I could no longer boot to SD card by holding the AV button
  • Did the same thing but with a Tanix TX3 mini stock Android .img since the hardware was identical, at this point, the LED “boot” text on the box was no longer functional but I was able to boot into Android from the eMMC
  • Installed the “Reboot to LibreELEC” app from Google Play as the AV button to boot to SD card still didn’t seem to work
  • I was now able to boot to CoreELEC from the SD card

Which brings me to my current situation, I was happy to have something other than Android on this box, the problem is that I seem to have rendered the eMMC near-useless.

Nothing I have tried has allowed me to boot from the eMMC ever since, not even the bootable SD card method from above since that required me to hold the AV button longer than usual, but the AV button doesn’t seem to work that way anymore.

If I remove the SD card and power it on, the box becomes useless, I am left with a black screen, nothing happens until I unplug it, at the moment it seems to only boot when an SD card is inserted and has CoreELEC.

Ideally I’d like to somehow get CoreELEC installed to the eMMC from this point, even if it’s a more involved installation process, since the scripts/executables to install don’t work and using the “x” flag says I am missing a partition of some sort that the Android install might have had.

As an experiment, since I already could not get the box to boot from the eMMC, I booted into CoreELEC, from SD card, and via SSH, did a cp /dev/zero /dev/mmcblk0 to wipe the eMMC completely, then rebooted, and it was still able to boot to CoreELEC from the SD card.

The box is as of now completely reliant on booting from the SD card slot to CoreELEC, it refuses to boot from the eMMC even after taking the same .img that I used to get CoreELEC onto the SD card and copying it to /dev/mmcblk0 via SSH, I even mounted the boot partition (/dev/mmcblk0p1 iirc) to copy over the same .dtb file that I did for the SD card, still no dice.

There’s also /dev/mmcblk0boot0 and /dev/mmcblk0boot1 partitions that I’m rather unfamiliar with.

Any way to save the eMMC? For example a way to have a working standalone install on the eMMC that boots? I’m not really interested in going back to the stock Android install.

I believe you’ll have to start with flashing the stock Android firmware back.

There is also a chance might work after flashing Aidan’s ROM.

There’s a few options to do so:

Amlogic USB Burning Tool
Amlogic Bootcard Maker