/boot/config.txt related questions for Raspbarry Pi

I’m trying to setup my Raspberry Pi 3B+ with NixOS along with specific Raspberry Pi targeted hardware. According to the manufacturer, I just need to add the following lines to my /boot/config.txt:


I’ve successfully made sure this line works with the hardware on an Arch Linux installation.

As for the NixOS setup, I have several questions:

  1. It seems boot.loader.raspberryPi.firmwareConfig is responsible for editing /boot/config.txt, yet I don’t see any change in it when I change this option’s value. Is it normal? Should I update it manually?
  2. Do I have to worry that the kernel I use (pkgs.linuxPackages_latest) doesn’t support this hardware? Can / should I switch to pkgs.linuxPackages_rpi?
  3. Apparently, that hardware’s manufacturer assumes I’m using a Raspberry Pi with a device tree overlays compatible Linux distribution. I’ll split this question into 4:
    • On my Arch Linux SD, I can see all of the ‘overlays’ .dtb files in /boot/overlays/ partition. Why don’t they appear in the NixOS SD?
    • Should I consider not using uboot at all? I understand it means my system upgrades won’t be atomic if there’s only 1 image configured for boot at any given time. I ask because I’m not sure but it seems that (at least in the past) device tree overlays are / were not supported with uboot. That post is old and there seems to be evidence (credit) that it does support this feature. Maybe NixOS just doesn’t take advantage of that?
    • I’ve tried setting boot.loader.raspberryPi.uboot.enable to false (although it’s supposed to be the default value) and nixos-rebuild switch but it had no effect.
    • Assuming device tree overlays are indeed supported by U-boot, do I just need to get these .dtb files and put them in /boot/overlays/ and it will just work? Could / should there be a better way to do that in a more pragmatic way?

I’ve chatted with @samueldr and @itorres on parts of these subjects but it was oftopic and now I’m opening a separate thread. Any other Raspberry Pi related user is more then invited to answer.

I hope I won’t be considered too impolite for doing this but these are the people who’ve contributed to Nixpkgs’ raspbarrypi.nix and that I could match their GitHub username and the discourse username:

Please don’t be mad at me if you don’t want to respond and you think that’s rude.

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