Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Android Jellybean on HP Touchpad 4G


For odd reasons, my downloads of important files got corrupted and I did not notice that, I copied all 4 files to “cminstall” directory and install got completely messed up, After it went through two penguins, at the end I had Please release key(s) ...

Corrupted files had wrong file sizes.


  1. Touchpad got stuck. I had to hard reset, Power+HOME for 10 sec. This will not help also. Loops into Press Release keys. Had to POWER+HOME for 10 sec, and immediately with another finger press VOL-UP, which put TP into recovery mode and I could do a UNINSTALL and continue to install JB.
  2. Installed novancom using standalone method, novacom-win-64.tgz
  3. Download ACMEUninstaller and ACMEInstaller3
  4. Download all needed files (a-d) and copy on cminstall directory of Touchpad
    1. 154,155,155 cm-10-MBM_Beta-20130120-4g_alpha1-tenderloin.zip
    2. 92,706,064 gapps-jb-20121011-signed.zip
    3. 189,836 moboot_038-tenderloin.zip
    4. 4,228,976 update-CWM6_tenderloin-20121215.zip
    5. 9,097,417 ACMEInstaller2 -- for ICS 4.0
    6. 9,091,431 ACMEInstaller3 -- for Jellybean 4.1
    7. 9,036,440 ACMEUninstaller
    8. 5,655,318 novacom-win-64.tgz
  5.  All files @box.com
  6. John Sullins page on Touchpad and his images
  7. Bring USB recovery, reboot TP, when it starts up keep pressing Vol-UP button
  8. PC should recognize and say bootie … Do following command to wipe out ICS Android if exists
  9. novacom boot mem:// < ACMEUnInstaller
  10. Do following command to install Jellybean, and then you are onto Android
  11. novacom boot mem:// < ACMEInstaller3

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Car Reminder Pro App



This is a great app. I have been using to track gas mileage for nearly past 1.5 years. I am attaching few screenshots. The developer is friendly and looks into bugs/issues and patches them quickly. You print the receipt from all gas fills, and enter the relevant data every time, and tool keeps track. Also this is used to track maintenance records.

There are several app in these categories, and this one is simple, lightweight and gets the job done. I have tested these on multiple smartphones and a tablet running ICS and Jellybean.













Saturday, May 12, 2012

HP Touchpad CM9 Installs / Uninstalls


Uninstalls and Installs of Android ICS CM9 Nightlies are quite easy. Here are some screenshots that will give an idea of the process

Again links are webosforums and rootzwiki hp touchpad nightly. Uninstaller works on CM9 and was able to install a brand new install.



List of files needed in cminstall directory on Touchpad. The installer will pick up the image and gapps files.


Friday, April 13, 2012

HP Touchpad : Android and WebOS


Android ICS Related Links

I currently have ICS 4.0.4 on the HP Touchpad. running nightly 0412 build. WebOS is a great OS, and very fluid. Has so many features, the preware has excellent apps and add on kernel patches (for e.g., overclocking, Uberkernel etc). The cyanogenmod team had done an excellent job in porting android to Touchpad platform and as of now they are in early alpha stage. Be sure to go through read the following links for a week or two and once you get a hang of it, it can be installed. After that be sure to backup Android using Titanium backup, so that in worst case you have to reinstall Android after a month of work, changed settings, you can easily restore it back. I had the wifi problem on CM, but changing the setting on router to use channel 1 (was auto) and making wifi not sleep on TP has fixed it. I would suggest you also learn how to do webOS doctor. I first tried doctoring/putting preware etc on a HP veer to make sure of the process. In this process I also installed novacom on my PC. Once you get a hang of it, the whole process is very easy.  I will add screenshots as a subsequent post soon.

Various Useful Links:

  1. Nightlies Changelog: http://cm-nightlies.appspot.com/?device=tenderloin
  2. RootzWiki  → Tablets → HP Touchpad → HP Touchpad Android Development → CyanogenMod [HP Touchpad]
  3. Good Starter Guide to get started :
    1. link  webosnation is an awesome site and has lot of useful resources and people, previously was precentral
    2. Another link This is easier, but the clockworkmod  link seem to not work. I did not have the boot clockworkmod when I followed the directions. Clockworkmod is absolutely required for upgrades between IceCream Sandwich releases. I had to use update-cwm_tenderloin-1012.zip from the first link and redo c:\Program Files\Palm, Inc>  novacom boot mem:// < ACMEInstaller2
  4. Google Apps Download link

WebOS Tips

  1. Troubleshooting Tips from Webos
  2. Preware Installation

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tests with LTE network in Sunnyvale


AT&T’s LTE speed. At this rate, 2 GB plan of $30 will be reached in

(2 * 109 * 8)/(26.54 * 106) = 10 mins.

You may not do this in theory, but if you are streaming a HD video at 1 Mbps, you will exhaust your cap in 4.44 Hours.


Saturday, October 15, 2011

ATT Enforcing Data Throttling


This is a test I did to find out what is the ATT Throttling Limit in  Oct 2011. It’s 2011 and to think carriers are throttling the data consumption usage is unbelievable. The internet traffic has progressively shifted from just text to audio to video traffic. I don’t have cable and almost all of news/video comes streamed through wired ISP (sonic.net) and ATT Unlimited data plan 3G service (podcasts/netflix/youtube). Sonic is just awesome and has no limits. A truly great ISP. The following diagram speaks for itself. Throttling to 140 Kbps?! Welcome to 1998.




Believe me, people say 10 GB is too much excessive. It is 3 or 4 movies. In 5 years we will be talking 100GB is excessive. When are carriers going to keep up with technology media demands.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Archos 70 250GB Review

Archos 70 250GB is an awesome device. I have been searching for a large capacity mp3 style player. I have tried iPod Classic, too small screen for my taste. iPhone 32GB is small for my music/video collection. Having used iPhone 3GS and Nexus One Android 2.1/2.2 (my review here), I have been thinking of any OS tablet style device. 7” is excellent for my requirement. While searching I stumbled on Archos 70/101 line and I was amazed they had a 250 GB hard disk model!
Salient points/comments/improvements for Archos 70 250 GB model:
  1. Form factor is great, weight is not an issue. You can definitely see the hard disk spinning/humming slightly on the HD model. Flash model will not have this issue.
  2. It would have been great if they have this hybrid model where they have 4 GB and rest Hard disk for storage. This will speed up things definitely.
  3. A Optional SDHC card slot like in flash model will be very desirable
  4. Since this is not Google blessed, there is no Android Google marketplace. So one has to install the hack given below in reference section. However this is very easy for people who are used to hacking/computer savvy. It may seem difficult for novice users, but it is very easy.
  5. The device/software is definitely not smooth if there are many apps running/lot of data churning. I have reboot it multiple times, but still it does not take away the usefulness of the product. As long as you don’t run random apps and try one at a time install/test/remove/keep approach you are fine.
  6. When I connected the device to a PC using USB cable, it reboot and then came up and gave option to mount USB. I had no idea why it rebooted. I live with this sort of thing for past 20 years, so it is not a issue for me.
  7. The Music player capability which is my main reason for getting it. There were some bumps in the Updating Multimedia library after copying files. It detected only 900 out of 5000+ files. I did a Reset Multimedia library and it fixed the issue. Took around 0.3 seconds to scan a file. So 6000 files = 6000 * 0.3 /60 = 30 minutes. This is reasonable and ok. Everytime I add music/pictures/videos I may have to run this if it does not incrementally find files. I am not sure how Android indexing media files works.
  8. The sound quality is amazing. There are two speakers on either side of tablet in landscape mode.
  9. Skype call works and I can make phone calls from this. This is very handy.
  10. Youtube is great, playback is good.
  11. I have only 802.11g, and wifi connectivity is good. I have powersave set to Overdrive.
  12. Gaming experience is great. Angry Birds! I am not playing games involving lot of accelerometer as moving device vigorously will affect hard disk. I am curious how hard disk is caged and sealed to device. Still moving head is a concern. I am not a big gamer of action/arcade games, so it is not a deal breaker for me. My main reason for getting this is storage! I am not a big believer of Cloud storage.  Read Richard Stallman’s rant on why cloud computing is stupidity. Though may not be entirely true, it is good someone is speaking up. Case in study: I had all 90GB of music in lala.com and Apple acquired and killed the service. So how can I trust cloud storage?
  13. Accessories: NOOKcolor eBook Pocket case cover, Bluetooth GPS Receivers, Phone for tethering or MiFi make it complete. Case/Google Navigation/Always on mobile. I tether to my Nexus One using portable hotspots which is a froyo feature.
  14. Could not get adb working with Archos 50 on Windows Ultimate 64 bit, trying with 32 bit and will post later on that.
  15. Overall for the money/value, one word. Wonderful!

References/Useful Websites:

Screenshots of Sample Pages with brief explanations:

Home screen with ADW launcher and Switchpro widget for power management..
Another page.

Going from one page and another. The animation is slick, The launcher is fantastic on Archos 70 hardware.


The forecast/weather apps really pop on the 7” form factor and very nice. Now my Nexus one looks tiny.

Browsing is pretty good with Dolphin HD, has many plugins too.
005      006

Kindle App is also awesome.  Same form factor as Nook or small Kindles.


Total Space. No typo 233 GB on a 7” Tablet! System storage is also reasonable. iPads are good because you get entire space for dividing between Apps, Music, Pictures, and Videos. Android is different.

I had to do this to recognize all music files.
Froyo version.

Google maps is compatible with Bluetooth GPS receivers.

dmesg and terminal emulator.

Finally Music App. I have ton of music here!
014             015

Make sure to unmount properly!

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Kindle DX Review [3G, Global, Graphite]

This review focuses on Kindle DX with many screenshots. Obviously it has been reviewed on several sites and well researched into. I will share my 2 ¢.   I considered Kindle DX over an iPad style tablet mainly for its sole job of rendering texts clearly with EInk technology. I wanted something very similar to a paper, and ability to adjust fonts and make reading a interesting experience. With that requirement, Kindle DX is excellent and meets all requirements.  Ability to read pdf is also excellent in Kindle DX. The software needs to be improved a lot and I am sure Amazon is working on it. I am fully aware this is still in its infancy and it is like PCs in mid 1980s. In another 10 years  I am sure, the technology will  be far superior.  We will look at several screenshots. One main issue is it is still not available widely in stores. So one has to buy and feel for it. The reviews only gives an idea, there is nothing like using it.
At the time of this writing, Google ebooks also made entry and this is definitely a crowded market. Google does not have a dedicated ereader, but may hope for its Chrome OS based netbooks to deliver the reading functionality. But it is not EInk still. The competition is always good!

Overall Summary of Kindle DX (current generation Dec 2010).
  1. Definitely book reading experience is great. Screen size and display is great, size excellent. Resolution, font size change are all excellent. For its primary purpose it is great. As Jeff Bezos mentioned, Kindle audience loves to read and likes Hemmingway, and does not play Angry Birds most of the time as they do on other devices. (am paraphrasing it here).
  2. I preferred a DX as I want to read user guides/manuals/Sanskrit pdfs and this is far superior than on smaller Kindles.
  3. Book buying experience is great. Sample chapter is excellent.
  4. Text to Speech is excellent. In reading of a whole chapter, it was excellent. Some improvements. Better treatment of punctuation. Better context sensitivity. “IT WAS” was pronounced I. T. Makes sense in a different place. Speaker is great.
  5. Weight is about right, less weight always welcome.
  6. Word Games are added bonus. Helps to keep kids occupied with word games rather than some junk games.
  7. Reading PDF docs is great, sensed all of my pdfs including Sanskrit, Tamil etc. rotation mode works great.
  8. Black and white is great for me. I don’t want to strain my eyes on a LCD screen. People who say this does not stack to iPad should get a iPad. It is there for a reason. This is like comparing apples to oranges.
  9. Blogs/magazines are ok, nice add on, but I rather read them on computers. Why are they paid? I would rather wish Amazon team up with advertisers and develop a good Ad model and make blogs and magazines free. All blogs are free on internet anyway and being a very immersive experience in Kindle, Ads will have a very strong impact and will help Amazon financially.  Right now, I doubt there are many subscribers to blogs.
  10. Would like buttons on both sides. I am afraid buttons may fail anytime. A sturdier mechanism will be good.
  11. Keypad buttons are right, wish the letters are brighter or more legible. A permanent caps lock key will be great. I wish the nav key is more like in Kindle3, I think the button which moves left right up down may break after long use
  12. Frequent Software update will be good. I do get memory errors after some use of experimental features.
  13. Experimental browser needs lot of improvement, but it is great. I definitely want Amazon to continue work on it. Pages don't refresh, sometimes I have to go back and come in again on browser windows.
  14. No Wifi. This has been mentioned million times. I wonder why Amazon left it?
  15. Folders is a must. I have 400 pdf documents, making collections and managing them is becoming a nightmare. If I have everything sorted as folders in PC and I drag it, it should appear as a folder view. Collections though ok, is not easy When I want to add some pdfs to a  collection it shows all 400 pdfs again. I don't think one pdf need to go into multiple collections. I don’t like sync programs, but some sort of usability improvements is definitely warranted.
  16. Auto wireless off during inactivity will be good to increase battery life .
  17. More storage space! 8 or 16 GB. With ability to store music also, it is highly desired.
  18. I like to have custom wallpapers. Let me create a screen_saver directory and put few family photos. Use that instead of authors.
  19. Misc: Runs Linux 2.6, busybox. Is there a GPS? I read on forums this has built in GPS?!
  20. Overall nice device, though there are several improvements possible. I will give a 4/5.
Following few shots are of a children’s book, Mary Poppins. following 5 screenshots are done with different font sizes. Click of images to vie original screenshot from Kindle DX.

Different font sizes. Click on images to view original screenshots.
How to change font sizes?

Nikon PDF manuals viewed here. It is extremely readable and quite handy.
007-nikon-manual2                      006-nikon-manual1

Diagnostic screens are handy, Pressing 411 and 611 from Settings Page brings these up.
010-611-1                         011-611-2

Kindle allows to clip book parts, for future reference. Useful for students.

Kindle also includes a web browser, music player and (undocumented) image viewer. music is kept in music directory, pictures in pictures/[subfolder] directory. subdirectory is required. Probably targeted for next software update.
Web browser. Bookmarks and some sample pages. Images are rendered very well.
014-bookmarks        015-cnet-site


Comic books as pdf documents. This is from  a Amar Chitra Katha.

How Collections appear on Kindle screen.

Sanskrit and other Indian languages are rendered fine in pdfs. No native support yet.

Sanskrit-English Dictionary and a page from Rig Veda Samhita.

022-sanskrit-dict                     024-sanskrit-rgveda

Horizontal Orientation.

Sample Games.

Few other pdf documents.




When you have ;debugOn. Many commands are deprecated or hidden now.`help gives the output. ;debugOff disables it.

Screenshots from this review: