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Custom ROM Configurable Custom Firmware

Discussion in 'X8-H & X8/Plus Custom ROMs, Kernels & Discussion' started by messer, Dec 14, 2014.

  1. messer

    messer youthful doter Dev Group


    this custom firmware is a flashable zip file with a graphical user interface that enables you to choose several options for the set up process.

    The current version is based on the Minix standard firmware provided via FOTA with the date stamp 2014-12-24. You can find the change log below.

    General approach:
    Apart from choosing the language regarding the set up itself the followings aspects can be selected:
    1. Complete new installation of the firmware
      individually configurable due to several options
    2. Switching the recovery version between Minix stock recovery and TWRP without the need to install the complete system again
    3. Root and Unroot the device
    4. Aroma Installer license agreement
    5. Acknowledgments
    6. Quit
    To navigate to the menu and the options you can use the cursor keys (it take a bit to get used to it … but that’s the price for the GUI).

    The installation regarding recovery and root / unroot need only one page on the GUI but the masks regarding the complete new setup are a bit more complex so that you can choose:
    1. Factory-Reset with loss of all data or only wiping the dalvik cache
    2. Selection which recovery version shall be installed (Minix oder TWRP)
    3. System language can be defined (partly with changing the time zone and adding keyboard layout files for Logitech keyboard k400r)
    4. Optionally the device can be rooted during the setup
    5. For several system components you can decide to install it or not
    6. A bunch of additional apps can be installed optional.

      All apps are always the free versions that you can also download at Playstore.

      In contradiction to the Minix firmware those apps will NOT be installed via the so-called preinstall-folder but the installation will be done “directly”. That means that the first boot process after installation will take a bit longer but after that all apps are already installed and you don’t have to wait a further while. Overall this installation strategy is a bit faster.
    By the way, Minix XMBC v.13.3.3 beta 8 is already included.

    Furthermore I have made some changes in comparison to the original Minix firmware:
    • USB-Debugging is activated by default
    • ADB is unsecured now so that you have root access via ADB
    • The Port 5555 was activated for ADB via network
    • For USB MTP as well as ADB is activated now
    • An additional sound file called „_NoTone.ogg“ (silence) was added; this is the only tone that will be installed by default
    • The Minix bootanimation has been deleted (needs space without any benefit) so that the standard animation with the android logo appears
    • The app „MboxSetting“ will be installed as a user app instead of a system app; this step was necessary in order to be able to switch the system language
    • The file „install-recovery.sh“ has been changed to avoid the re-installation of the Minix recovery
    In addition to the media player Minix Neo X8(H) the standard remote control or better an external keyboard is needed. I have tested the zip file in combination with a Logitech keyboard. Regarding using other input devices I cannot make any statement … I cannot test it.


    Although this firmware is still in a beta phase I would like to say THANK YOU to some people who have made this installation possible:
    • amarullz for the awesome tool AROMA INSTALLER ... take a look at the corresponding threads on xda-developers.com
    • Abdul_PT for his adaption of TWRP to the Minix X8(H) ... take a look at the corresponding thread on freaktabs.com
    • gufone and hardwareguru on minixforum.com as well as Finless on freaktab.com -
      their zip files and their comments in several threads were an inspiration for me ... take a look at the corresponding threads on minixforum.com and on freaktab.com
    • all those software developers...
      ... who are providing great software on Playstore for free (some examples of the great software are integrated into the firmware)
    • all other people who have made suggestions and provided useful hints
    THANKs to all of you!

    This is a firmware version that is still in beta conditions. Thus you are using it without any kind of warranty and on your own risk!

    Hints regarding installation of the zip file:
    • please ensure that the file called „factory_update_param.aml“ is NOT stored in the root folder of your SD card.
    • the Aroma Installer is a bit sensitive in combination with the X8(H)-box - sometimes (approximately 5%) the GUI freezes; because of that I recommend to execute the installation after a cold-boot
    • sometimes (by now twice) the screen output is truncated so that the user cannot see the whole screen content; in spite of intensive investigations this effect couldn't be solved by now :(


    The current version can be download via the following links:
    More information:
    You can find a detailled overview regarding the optional system components and apps at android-mediaplayer.de following this link.

    Change Log:
    Version 05b
    Compared to version 04b the following changes were made:
    • updated the base firmware to Minix version provided via FOTA with the date stamp 2014-12-24
    • updated optional apps (as of 2014-12-29)
    • additional dictionaries for Hackers Keyboard were added:
      • french
      • italian
      • spanish
      • portuguese
      • danish
    • added some additional apps (for those who don't use XBMC evertime):
      • QuickPic
      • PowerAmp
      • VLC-Player
    • several internal changes
    Version 04b
    Compared to version 03b the following changes were made:
    • updated optional apps (as of 2014-12-21)
    • added SPMC 13.4 as optional app
    • user can select default date format
    • Ensuring that no app can appear twice when setting up system without complete data wiping
    • in addition to the dalvik-cache the partition /cache will be deleted when a "keep data" installation is executed
    • as of now there will be only one version of the zip file; people who want to pass the installation process in English have to choose the language manually on the first screen
    • added language "English (Australian)" ... as a "thank you" to gh0st that he sticked this thread ;-)
    • several internal changes that hopefully nobody will recognize
    Version 03b
    Compared to version 02b the following changes have been made:
    • updated busybox in folder /system/xbin
    • updated several optional apps to the current state (2014-12-17)
    • changed the strategy to change the system language (internal change)
    • reduced the list of optional apps in order to reduce the size of the zip file
      (Google Docs, Google Tabs, Google Slides, Google Magazine and Google News Widget are not included anymore ... assuming that nobody will use a media player like a desktop PC there are enough other options included to view typical office documents -> Adobe reader, QuickOffice and Polaris office)
    • several minor changes that hopefully nobody will recognize

    Best regards
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2015
    tebautua, -= Cara =-, Willis and 3 others like this.
  2. Higgs

    Higgs Yellow Dude Super Moderator

    Looks impressive.
    Will future ota updates still work with this firmware?

    Sent using Tapatalk
  3. messer

    messer youthful doter Dev Group

    Without the ability to test it I can only assume that it will work - the apps called "FotaUpdate.apk", "FotaUpdateReboot.apk" as well as "OTAUpgrade.apk" are still part of this distribution.
  4. Willis

    Willis New Member

    Am I missing the link for this? Where is it??
  5. messer

    messer youthful doter Dev Group

    Look at the download section and go to the last work "link" which is the link
    Willis likes this.
  6. Willis

    Willis New Member

    Thanks... :)
  7. Willis

    Willis New Member

    I'm waiting for download & won't, likely, install until later, but have installed "Aroma" installs on other devices & liked the options available - I expect to like this one as well... :) I'll likely install without a "wipe" this time since this is such a small increment - 002 to 002a - I usually wipe & clean install to allow new FW the best chance of performing properly... I hope the "Custom Recovery" is easier to navigate than stock - My usual first "Fix" for problems is "Cache Wipe, dalvik cache wipe" & the stock "recovery" is SO awful that I haven't even checked to see if this option is offered there...

    THANKS for your effort, messer, & Thanks, Ken, for mentioning this option in the 002 thread... :)
  8. NetAndif

    NetAndif Member

    Hi messer,
    thanks for sharing your custom firmware! I like the idea of a configurable install. Good work :)
    One question: does your new installer allow the users to change their boot logo / animation?
    If not, this would be an awsome feature to be implemented.
    Willis likes this.
  9. messer

    messer youthful doter Dev Group

    Thanks for your replies!

    Yes, I know that the download takes a while. Due to the fact that I have integrated a lot of apps in addition to the core system the zip file is quite big (approx. 900kb) ... and because of that the download takes a bit longer. And by the way, the installation itself takes also a bit longer than the setup of the stock firmware ... so - you get more and thus it takes longer.

    Due to the big file size of the zip I have deleted the Minix bootanimation and no change of the logo and the bootanimation is considered. To be honest - I would prefer to focus on getting everything running smoothly instead of enhancing the zip file - at least for the next days/weeks.
    But if you can provide some examples I will integrate it at least into my internal tests.

    Best regards
    Willis likes this.
  10. nesor85

    nesor85 Member

    I get an error message "wrong twrp version even after installing the one from your provided zip
  11. messer

    messer youthful doter Dev Group

    uups - I have to check that. My first impression is that this is simply a comparison fault on my side.

    As a workaround please try to install the Minix stock recovery and after that you should be able to re-install twrp as part of the complete installation. Thank you in advance.

    I will check that and after that I will logon again.
  12. nesor85

    nesor85 Member

    I tried but even if I select the minix-recovery it flashes twrp
  13. messer

    messer youthful doter Dev Group

    I just found the reason (stupid typing error :confused:) ... I will update the zip file soon but unfortunately the replication to the dropbox take some time.
    Thus I kindly ask you to switch the recovery by using the zip provided with this link: X8_RecoveriesRootUnrootV04b.zip
    nesor85 likes this.
  14. nesor85

    nesor85 Member

    Will try later. Am watching a movie on my minix right now
  15. messer

    messer youthful doter Dev Group

    The zip file is updated now ... so go ahead ;-)
  16. nesor85

    nesor85 Member

    Will do as soon as the movie is over. Do I need to re-download if I flash standard recovery or can I still go that route
  17. messer

    messer youthful doter Dev Group

    You will have to re-download the zip file and to replace it on your sd card
  18. nesor85

    nesor85 Member

    Okay. I will do that tomorrow, time to go to sleep now. Who knows when the little on wakes up.
  19. Willis

    Willis New Member

    So, do I need to re-download the up-date? I haven't yet installed...
  20. nesor85

    nesor85 Member

    I did and it worked like a charm
    Willis likes this.