does stocker FW version matter when installing different roms?

Discussion in 'Viewsonic gTablet' started by mikee, Jul 29, 2011.

  1. mikee

    mikee Member

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    I am thinking of getting a g tablet and I'm wondering if I want to install cyanogen mod 7 does it matter what stock firmware version I have before I flash ti the new rom?

    Also Is it easy to revert back to stock from one of these roms?
     
  2. Swould333

    Swould333 Senior Member

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    Stock firmware isn't really the issue as much as which version of the bootloader comes on the tablet... either version 1.1 or 1.2... there are different version of most popular ROMs for each of them including CyanogenMod...

    A quick and easy way to determin your boot loader is to try to boot to recovery by pressing the power and holding the vol +key... you'll boot to the birds screen and see a small message in the uper right of the screen saying something to the degree of recovery key detected... you can let go of the vol+ key... depending on what bootloader your tablet has things will happen differnetly...

    bootloader 1.1 uses a command line text file that is in the folder "recovery" on one of your sdcards to tell the recovery program what to do and where to do it from... it starts in the internal mem partition, "SDCARD", by default and then goes to the external micro sdcard, "SDCARD2"... if it doens't find a command file to tell it what to do then it will continue to boot and boot into Tap'n'Tap this will be typical unless you have an actuall update or are trying to load an external recovery like ClockWorkMod then it will go to the instaltion screen which is a box a with an arrow coming out of it with a status indicator line showing the progress of the install.... after it completes the tablet will reboot...

    bootloader 1.2... you enter it the same way.. power up from off and hold the vol+... it will give the same message in the upper right recovery button detected.. BUT.. it will take you to a screen that has lettering that gives you options for "reboot", "install update.zip", "factory data reset".. blah balh blah.. you navigate up and down with the vol keys and select with the home button. This is similar to Clockwork but not as good because it lacks some of more useful ultilities that CW has..

    IF your device by some miracle of the return and resell fairies has clockwork on it you'll have green lettering and at the top it'll say Clockwork and what version it is...

    and if you decide you want to run a rom from a differnt bootloader it is possible to go back and forth.. from 1.1 to 1.2 is fairly easy just install an update.zip.. but from 1.2 to 1.1 is a tad more daunting... I've had success one time in using a down grade method listed on xda devlopers that you do it all right there from the tablet you have to have an esternal sd card or usb thumbdrive to do it and it doens't actually spell it out step by step... the easiest way is NVflash and it's a good idea to have set up and on hand to pull you out of a hole incase you softbrick your tablet in your rom flashing exloits.


    Yes there are several copies of the factory firmware out there that can be installed back on the tablet... but if you're wanting to go back to the version that has the 1.2 bootloader you first have to load the version that has bootloader 1.1.. then run the update to take you to the next higher version.
     
  3. mikee

    mikee Member

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    so basically if bootloader 1.1 finds a recovery file on the external sd card it does the process automatically and bootloader 1.2 gives a menu asking what to do.

    Thank you for that detailed outline. I had no idea there is a possibility of getting a used unit marked as new. Isn't that kind of illegal to do without clearly stating that it is an open box unit?
     
  4. Swould333

    Swould333 Senior Member

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    ya never know... i haven't heard of it with a viewsonic specifically... but i did buy a coby tablet at kmart that was new in a sealed box and it had clockwork on it..

    and yes.. thats the reason for 2 differnt update files to add clockworkmod on a 1.1 bootloader...one for internal sd card and one for external sdcard... the only differnce is the command line promt that tells the recovery where to look for the update.zip file... several people have tried using the wrong version when they first start out... which leads to frustration till they get it figured out..

    with bootloader1.2 you just scroll to the option and select it....
     
  5. Swould333

    Swould333 Senior Member

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    if you're seriously want a ablet this one is great... theonly caveat i'd warn about is the screen viewing angle.... it can either be a pain or a blessing.. you pretty much need to be viewing head on to see well.. not bad if you're concerned with privacy.. issue if you're trying to share...

    if you have a Staples near by and they have one instock the Acer Icona is a great tablet. my buddy just sold his gtab and picked one up... with the cupon they have out, http://www.androidtablets.net/forum...s-offers-100-off-coupon-tablet-purchases.html , this is prolly the most bang for the buck.. you can get it for $299 with the cupon.. but the coupon expires today...
     
  6. mikee

    mikee Member

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    the acer is too expensive even if you factor in the soupon it is still like 350$ whereas the g tablet can be had from tigerdirect for 260 and it has pretty much the same specs and can run honeycomb if modded to do so. You say the tablet is fine if only one person is viewing? Not a big issue for me since only one person will be watching stuff on it at a time and I wort of value my privacy since some people at school can be quite nosy if they see someone with something that looks like an ipad. If I want to share I can share videos on the computer or in the case of showing off a picture to someone real quick they can hold the tablet and see it that way. Oh Also is there actually an accessory for hdmi on this tablet?


    Edit: if I install the wrong rom for my bootloader will it brick the tab or can it be fixed once found out that is the issue? The way I am seeing this is you never really know what bootloader you have until you try and perform some sort of update.

    AND finally a fewmore things. does modding really void the warranty? is the stock rom really all that bad because I have heard one thing doesn't work on one rom but works on another but on that rom something else doesn't work etc. I would like an equalizer feature for my music on it though. does it come with headphones?

    Sorry I am asking a lot but I am going to buy real soon I just need to get things straight
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2011
  7. Swould333

    Swould333 Senior Member

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    You'll be able to tell the bootloader version form the firmware version.. there is a write up on it in one of the stickies either in this main forum or the technical section..

    yes ther are HDMI optins for the tablet.. with either the dock that gives you HDMI, USB and LAN along wiht charging capabilties.. or there is now just a straight HDMI cable that goes out from the dock connector on the bottom of the tab... both are available form electronicscrap.com... they typically sell out fairly fast so keep checing back if they're not in stock.. Steve does his best to keep up with demand... you can get reviews and user input on the accessory section

    yes... installing a rom for another botloader version WILL deffinatly soft brick you device.. possibily even hard brick it... a soft brick can be recovered from by using NVflash.. it's a nvidia utiity that allows you to wipe, repatition the entire tablet and install a known good version of the factory firmware...you can load either the versions that support the 1.1 or the 1.2 bootloader

    if you didn't have interest in the android market or personalizing the tablet to anydegree and just using the tablet as an ereader/email/broswing device then yes.. you'll prob be fine with the factory UI... but the custom firmwares available do enhance the user experience dramaticaly... try it for a while and see then look on youtube at some of the various video reviews of the available roms to see if you think you may like them better... several are linked in the technical section.. Yes moding will void the warranty... i haven't used this device to much for music so and eq hasn't been high on my priorities.. but i do recall seeing DSP, an EQ type prorgram, on several roms... head phones i'm not sure i bought my tab seond hand.. but if it does i'm sure they're not of very high quality....

    better to ask than have buyer remorse... so NP.. and the ACER was $320.98 with the cupon.. i picked up one for a friend because he couldn't find it in his home town..
     
  8. mikee

    mikee Member

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    so you can't load the market on the stock firmware at all? I hear you can access the android market right from a web browser. I want to be able to run programs like pandora angry birds, evernote, dropbox. Basically things I have on the ipod right now. I would like to have EQ settings though for music. I'm looking at putting cyanogenmod on it if I get one. I read it has some decent DSP settings built in. I will probably wait a month though to make sure I have a working unit before voiding the warranty. Do you guys usually install a custom rom right as soon as you get it?



    Edit: can you transfer songs to it like a normal mp3 player? like with windows media player
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2011
  9. Swould333

    Swould333 Senior Member

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    You can find all this info in the stickies... yes you can put the market right on the TAP'N'TAP ui... Yes you can access the android market from the browser but you can't install any apps unless you have the market app on the device... you can select and tell it to be installed from the web market.. but it just sends a command to your device via google services that initiates the download and install via the market app.... my thoughts were to use the stock UI for a while also, as are most peoples, but i only lasted a few hrs... coming from previous Android expreience on my Droid and DroidX phones... i knew what i was missing out on. Cyanogen mod is an excelent rom to start on... very stable and very capable of being customized.

    yes i believe you can "sync" the device as a usb type device via Win media player.. you'll need to to make sure your device connects to windows as a usb storage device when connected to a WinPC... rather than win media player I'd just copy and paste unless you're wanting to change the compression type/sampling rate.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2011
  10. mikee

    mikee Member

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    I've seen videos of people usnig the stock rom and I don't see what s so terrible about it. minus the tap interface which you don't have to use. Other than that it's just android..plain android. Some to me seem not so well done since it still has ll the phone stuff still on it which isn't needed on a tablet
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2011
  11. Swould333

    Swould333 Senior Member

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    ALL roms including the stock firmware have aspects if the mobile or phone sotware. It's inhernet of Android... some have better workarounds to avoid the system trying to utilize them as much and running down your battery and hogging mem and other rescources... the only version of Android that is specifically developed so as it can be a stand alone tablet entity without the mobile aspect is Honeycomb...
     
  12. mikee

    mikee Member

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    I have come to the conclusion that since I would probably be voiding the warranty by rooting the tablet which is needed to run the market so I may as well go all out and install a custom rom as well
     

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