I did recently an updated (sudo apt-get updated && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade) on my 3 raspberies. Two RPI 3B, and one RPI Zero W. The strange thing is that the raspberries that I installed later (a year later), have the newest kernel and bootloader, deb package version 1.20190401-1.

But my oldest Raspberry (3B) is stuck with 1.20170703-1.

sources.list on all of them is the same:

deb http://raspbian.raspberrypi.org/raspbian/ stretch main contrib non-free rpi

Should I change some option in config.txt or something to get newer kernel? Both RPI 3B are version 1.2.

3 Answers 3


sources.list on all of them is the same

but have you also looked at /etc/apt/sources.list.d/raspi.list? Just this list contains

deb http://archive.raspberrypi.org/debian/ stretch main ui
# Uncomment line below then 'apt-get update' to enable 'apt-get source'
#deb-src http://archive.raspberrypi.org/debian/ stretch main ui

and that is exactly the repository specifically for the Raspberry Pi containing kernel, firmware, drivers and other hardware related goodies. If it isn't present you can create it but before doing

rpi ~$ sudo apt update
rpi ~$ sudo apt full-upgrade

you should do a backup/image of the RasPi if you have important data on it. I don't know if there may come serious problems after such a long time without update.

If you have already updated from the raspi.list you may consider to reinitialize the package lists. How to do it you can look at Raspberry Pi sudo apt-get update not working.

  • 1
    Bingo :), in raspi.list I still had jessie: deb http://archive.raspberrypi.org/debian/ jessie main ui Apr 13, 2019 at 5:34

upgrade should get the latest, but the following will ensure this (and allow recovery from rpi-update)

sudo apt-get update; sudo apt-get install --reinstall raspberrypi-bootloader raspberrypi-kernel will get supported kernel/bootcode.


"In normal circumstances there is NEVER a need to run rpi-update as it always gets you to the leading edge firmware and kernel and because that may be a testing version it could leave your RPi unbootable". https://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?p=916911#p916911 Even the rpi-update documentation now warns "Even on Raspbian you should only use this with a good reason. This gets you the latest bleeding edge kernel/firmware."

Run rpi-update :-)

See http://raspberryconnect.com/software-utilities/item/53-sw-rpiupdater for details and https://github.com/Hexxeh/rpi-update.

  • 1
    Please don't advice to use rpi-update for normal usage as in this case. It may result in an unstable installation! Please read the Notes behind the second link you have given: There is always the possibility of regressions and other warnings. The first link you have given is broken.
    – Ingo
    Apr 12, 2019 at 23:50
  • But I wonder why I didn't get the updated on one Raspberry and got it on another, rpi-update would get me even more different kernel on that on Rasp in comparison with the other. I want to have exactly the same as on other ones. Apr 13, 2019 at 5:33
  • Sorry, did not know. I always do rpi-update after install, never had a problem and it does backup the /boot and modules, so the situation should not be very grim even if it fails (mount, erase new, rename old, boot), right? Apr 15, 2019 at 14:14

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