Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Updating the x10i (x10 Mini Pro)

The Xperia x10 mini pro is a cool little phone. Has pretty much everything anyone would every need in a device that's like 4.5"x2"x1". Basically, a block of coolness. Has Bluetooth, 5MP camera, LED Flash, Wifi, sdcard, slide-out keyboard, headphone jack, FM Radio, and a few other goodies. I picked it up in Germany probably around '07/'08 and it has been like a part of me. It's also got a modified QWERTY keyboard (QWERTZ) due to its source location. As an added benefit, it came with an unlocked SIM and it has been used around the world.

Unfortunately, Sony Ericsson (no relation to me) just stopped supporting it. Last version of Android they made available was 2.1 (Eclaire). Even then, there were still problems with the software. Then I remembered the XDA forums that I had used for the hacking of my old T-Mobile MDA. Lo and behold, the x10i had a community group. From there, I was able to root the device, install a custom recovery, unlock the bootloader, and install MiniCM7 (Gingerbread). That's when I became, truly, a XDA member and supporter.

Even with the post-market support, the little genie inside is getting a little past its prime. JB on a quad-core supporting GBs of storage and RAM just blow its little 600 MHz / 2 GB / 256MB configuration out of the water. However, thanks to the dedication of NobodyAtAll (abbrev'd as nAa), there are attempts at bringing the little guy up to standards. Granted, it can't run real JB, but nAa is working on a JB-variant of his ICS implementation that should be close enough.

Necessary Files:


Start off by installing Flashtool which will allow us the ability to change firmwares and kernels. You will probably need to install Flash Mode drivers (located in the Flashtool "drivers" directory) so that your device can be accessed from the PC.

Take the U20_nAa-jb-03_2.6.29.6-nAa-jb-03.ftf file and place it into the "firmwares" directory so that we can use it in Flashtool.

Boot phone into "Flash Mode" in this fairly straight-forward fashion:
  • Turn off phone
  • Connect cable to phone
  • Press and Hold Back Button
  • Plug in device to PC
  • Continue holding Back a few seconds (Green LED will turn off)
  • Wait
  • Device should now have orange LED
Start up Flashtool, if not already done.

Press the lightning bolt icon on the top left. In the popup that appears, select "Flashmode" and press ok. Another window will come up for selecting the firmware to install.

Select the nAa-jb-03 option and press ok. Another window will appear, providing instructions on how to begin the flashing process.

This is pretty much what you did before. Unplug, turn off, press and hold back, reinsert, release back. Once this is performed, the flashing process will start and will be done before you know it.

From that point, unplug the phone and turn it on. It will automatically go into Clockwork Mod (which was installed as part of the firmware).

In CWM, perform these actions:
"Mounts & Storage"
  • format /system
  • format /data
  • format /cache.
"Install zip from sdcard"
  • Choose zip from sdcard
  • MiniCM10-4.0.2-mimmi.zip
  • Choose zip from sdcard
  • gapps-jb-nAa-20121119-signed.zip
Now, you merely need to reboot the phone and wait 2 minutes for the initial startup to complete. You'll be presented with a new-fangled snazzy bootup image to greet you.

From there, you can begin the setup process.

Funny point to note: Initially, I thought someone misspelled "Skip Start" as "Skype Start". No, those are actually overlapping buttons. The 'X' is for Skype (and I saw once turn to "Emergency Call"), and the button underneath is "Start". Anyway, hit the "Start" button and do the setup wizard.

Once all of this is done, you'll have [what we can call, anyway] JellyBean on the x10 Mini Pro!

Look at all of that goodness!

Now, remember that our little buddy here doesn't have the resources JB likes. To speed things up a little bit, here's some performance tweaks:

  • Undervolt the CPU
  • Set on Boot
Settings->Performance->Memory Management
  • Kernel samepage merging

Settings->Developer Options
  • Debugging - Android Debugging
  • Debugging - USB debugging notify
  • APPS - Kill app back button
Let's hear it for nAa and his associates for keeping this little guy alive!

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