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does anyone boot Android devices from USB or SD Card?

android usb booting sd card booting arm

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#1 Zoso

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 03:16 AM

OK so I am a little bit spoiled from booting PC from USB (and CF & SD cards) and now that I am tinkering with an Android device (RK2918 chip, ARM7 processor) one of my first questions is: how can these devices be booted from USB or SD?

we have a nearly universal XP & W7 booting from USB. we also have Android x86 for booting Android on some PCs. so do you think it will be possible to make a universal Android or other linux booting on all or many ARM Devices?

mostly just thinking aloud but would like to get some input here about something like this.

thanks

#2 alacran

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 05:52 AM

I think a boot loader to do this is required, Grub4dos is the best when you are in a Windows environment, and it is capable to boot many Linux too, been them installed or Iso's on HDD or USB drive,  as I assume you well know.  So this would be my candidate to start playing, perhaps with some help from Plop, but I don't have any info about MBR used in Android or how to install Plop or Grub4dos on it.

For the OS to boot from USB or SD card, I suggest Ubuntu or Firefox both have arm versions.  Anyway drivers are going to be a big challenge with so many different hardware.

 

Best Regards



#3 Zoso

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 09:35 AM

hi alacran, I found some interesting info about it here: http://android.stack...rom-a-usb-drive

it seems booting from USB would be quite difficult but booting from external SDcard should be easier.

Anyway drivers are going to be a big challenge with so many different hardware.

actually I think it would only work from SDcard and only after the devices boot.img is reflashed with a modified one to direct it to the external SDcard, not sure though.

probably dual booting Android/Android on same device would be a good first step to take in this direction to have a better idea of what it would really take to boot from external media too.

edit: found this tutorial on dual booting: http://www.androidta...novo-a2109.html says it is possible on any Android device so thats encouraging.

Edited by Zoso, 11 December 2013 - 04:31 AM.
added new info/link


#4 alacran

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Posted 30 December 2013 - 02:54 PM

Your own official Linux distro in a SD card (for ARM)

http://hwswbits.blog...stro-in-sd.html

 

It sounds very good, There are links for full versions, just to put in your SD card and boot, and also how to build your own version if you want.

 

Best Regards



#5 Zoso

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Posted 30 December 2013 - 08:11 PM

that is encouraging! but.. my Rockchip device is 2xxx. and rockchip does not comply with GPL however the newer 3xxx rockchip code was leaked and that is what the work in your link is based on.

from my reading about the 2xxx devices they do not impliment the full linux stack, that started with the 3xxx so I dont think this will work on my 2918 but it is really good to see this because this means that the AIO devices Ive been thinking about are just around the corner!

I have been trying to get the Ubuntu Touch found here: http://crewrktablets...let.com/?p=1103 ported on the 2918 though. it is working on some 2918 devices but has not been ported to the version I have so Im working on it.

problem so far is that it uses CWM recovery to install but the CWM version it uses does not have touch support for my device so I can not select "install from SDcard" after first boot. I found a CWM that has been modded to work on this tab and it does work but when I reflash this version and try to continue with Ubuntu it is not working with the CWM version that I have.

Im trying to find instructions to learn how to modify CWM to add touch support for my device now but have no luck yet.

thanks for posting that info though. I think I will be looking for a rockchip 3xxx device in the future.

#6 alacran

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Posted 01 January 2014 - 01:09 PM

@ Zoso

 Well you may tray using an USB mouse if your tablet has that port of course.

 

About looking for a Rockchip 3xxx, I suggest you better buy an Allwinner A20 or an A23 (new model) both are dual core, and many come with 1 GB Ram and 8 GB internal storage, about brand Eken has good support for their product Rom's as I can confirm.

 

I found a topic about a Recovery with touch it is for Allwinner A13 but it may be good to take a look to it, perhaps it may give you some ideas for building yours. In the topic is the info about how to use it.

 

Topic Link: http://www.techknow....hp?topic=7389.0

 

Tool link: http://www.androidfi...269279319195870



#7 Zoso

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Posted 03 January 2014 - 05:05 PM

I tried USB mouse since you mention it but not working in the CWM for JB so I doubt it will work in the Ubuntu CWM but I cant say for certain until I try it.

thanks for that and the links. the Tech Know one wants login though.

#8 alacran

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Posted 08 January 2014 - 01:28 PM

Take a look to this Arm Mobo https://www.olimex.c...source-hardware It looks good for experimenting, It run's Linux or Android, they say it is open hardware. Any way there are links for download both OS's: https://www.olimex.c...ges_from_OLIMEX

I downloaded the 2 OS as this is same CPU as mine, so I opened the Android image using DragonFace to take a look at drivers located in system\vendor\modules they are about the same my own Android version has, after looking at this I'm guessing my tablet is going to boot when cloning linux image on a microSD card and run it.

 

Best Regards







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