Q1: What is CyanogenMod and why should I use it over stock?
CyanogenMod (CM) is a community-based firmware (or ROM) based on the Android Open Source Project (AOSP). Each new Android release has a corresponding AOSP version, which is used by CM to build ROMs for devices not officially supported by stock Android. Hobbyist developers then port the CM code to yet more devices outside of CM's device list. Thanks to the efforts of verygreen
, Nook's lead dev here, both the HD and HD+ are now officially supported by CM. CM 10.1 is based on Android 4.2.x, and has reached general release. CM 10.2 (based on Android 4.3) is beginning its first alpha builds. [Note: These are for eMMC installs only.]
Official CM builds for Nook HD+: http://download.cyanogenmod.com/?device=ovation
Official CM builds for Nook HD: http://download.cyanogenmod.com/?device=hummingbird
CM offers the full Android experience, and is based on the latest version available. Stock Nook firmware is a much more limited OS, geared to selling Nook wares, and is based on the older Android 4.0 release. CM allows you to do more. However, the flip side to more versatility is more complexity; CM has a higher learning curve.
Q2: What are the different CM installation methods to Nook, and which is best?
There are three install types:
SD - CM is installed to a bootable SD card, leaving the stock Nook ROM intact in internal storage (eMMC). The benefit is that you can easily switch between stock and CM. The drawback is that SD cards aren't designed for running an OS; I/O operations can be problematic, leading to crashes and performance issues. For best results, the consensus is to use the older Sandisk class 2 or 4 cards.
(Nook HD+ development thread)
(Nook HD development thread)
Hybrid - Some elements of CM are installed into Nook's internal storage (eMMC flash), and some elements remain on the SD card. This alleviates the I/O problems of the pure SD install. You still need to boot with a SD card, and the card still needs to be in place to run CM, ie the SD slot can't be used for additional storage.
(Nook HD+ development thread)
(Nook HD development thread)
eMMC - CM is wholly installed into Nook's internal storage (eMMC flash), replacing stock. This is the favored method, as it's the least problem-prone, and frees the SD slot to be used for additional storage. The drawback is that you can't switch between firmwares as easily, and some people are put off by the install's one-way nature. But with a backup of the stock ROM, going back to stock is feasible, albeit more inconvenient.
(Nook HD+ development thread)
(Nook HD development thread)
Q3: Something went wrong, or I have questions. How do I get help?
Search before asking, as whatever problems you run into are likely to have been encountered and solved. For general Android issues, try Google search first. For install specific issues from this guide, browse this thread. If you can't find a solution, then please ask.
Common problems reported:
a) aborted installs - Check downloaded zip files for integrity, as file corruption has been a common problem.
b) can't write to SD card - Check downloads for file corruption. Try a different SD card or a different reader. A simple microSD=>USB adapter tends to work best, as multi-format readers may interfere with the image-writing process.
c) can't boot from SD card - Again, first check downloads for file corruption. Some Nooks are reported to be finicky with booting from SD. Simply try booting several (or many) times, removing & reinserting the card each time. Try with a different SD card. Check the thread for an alternate method of making a boot card, which may help.
The mantra for troubleshooting is to minimize your configuration. Generally, if a problem appears after you've loaded some apps on, revert back to baseline backup to see if the problem still exists. If problem disappears on baseline, then reload apps one-by-one to isolate it. If problem remains in baseline, revert back to stock backup. If problem remains again, return Nook for exchange.
Q4: What are the various Android partitions and their functions?
Q5: What is ClockworkMod (CWM) and how do I use it?
CWM is a system recovery tool for Android. It is used to backup/restore system images (OS+data), as well as to install ROMs and other software packages outside of Android. It is the go-to utility for all CM ROM uses.
The above guide installs CWM into the Nook; CWM can also be used from a bootable SD card. It is menu-based, and uses the Nook's various buttons to navigate: volume buttons to move highlight bar, Nook 'n' button to select, and power button to go back.
Once installed onto the Nook, CWM can be accessed in three ways:
a) From ROM Manager app. http://play.google.com/store/apps/de...tta.rommanager
b) Upon power-up, when either the Nook or the Cyanoboot logo appears, press & hold Power + Nook 'n' buttons for a second or two.
c) Within CM10.1: select Settings > 'About tablet' > 'Build number' (repeatedly tap on it until 'Developer options' appears in the left column). Once Developer options is enabled, select it, enable 'Advanced reboot' to allow reboot to recovery. Then, to access the reboot-to-recovery option, long-press the Power button for the Power menu to appear, select 'reboot', then select 'recovery' at the second menu.
More detailed info and tutorial on CWM:
Q6: What is sideloading and how do I use it?
Sideloading means to install apps without using the official Play Store. The option is disabled by default. To enable, go to Settings > 'Security' > Device Administration > enable 'Unknown sources'. For security, enable sideloading only as-needed and disable it afterward.
Once sideloading is enabled, you need to have the app file to be installed. The file will have an '.apk' extension. The file can be on your PC, on a SD card, or within the Nook storage. Navigate to the file with your file manager and tap on it. The file manager will then install it into the Nook. For files on the PC, you'll need to have a file manager that can access shared folders over the network, such as ES File Explorer.
Q7: What is the best [fill-in-the-blank] Android app?
Search for it, eg for file manager: http://google.com/search?q=best+file...er+for+android
which nets: http://techsupportalert.com/content/...er-android.htm
From there, try a few of the favorites. Repeat for other app categories.
Q8: How do I share files between my PC and the Nook?
You can copy files to/from the Nook with the included Nook cable, which doubles as a charging cable and a data cable. The Nook is accessed as an MTP device, which can be slow and problematic when transferring large files. Files can also be shared via microSD card or a USB device (see below). For large files, this latter is the fastest and most practical method.
Android doesn't presently have built-in filesharing, and it falls to the apps to fill that need. Over wifi, one solution is to install ES File Explorer, which allows connecting to shared folders on your LAN. This works for typical uses like watching movies from a media server. It doesn't work if apps need direct access without ES being the middleman. In that case, you can use ES to copy the resource onto the Nook beforehand.
Geek solution: One app that allows direct file access is CIFSManager. However, it is no longer maintained, and the addition of multiuser in Android 4.2 breaks it. CM has implemented a workaround, which is to mount volumes OUTSIDE of /storage (recommended mount point is /mnt/cifs). Second, CIFSManager is very slow when accessing shares of multiple thousands of files. Put another way, there is presently no comprehensive filesharing solution for Android, which will require a native implementation.
(CIFSManager workaround for CM 10.1)
To share files FROM the Nook, use Samba Filesharing for Android. This sets up a Samba server, and allows PCs to see content on the Nook. Search on 'samba' or 'file sharing' from within the Play Store for other filesharing options.
Q9: How do I put a network folder (say, of movies) onto the Nook's home screen?
Using ES File Manager: Swipe left or right to get to the LAN window; tap 'Scan' button to search for LAN shares. Once shares appear, long-press to select the desired share and edit the details if needed. Navigate to the share's desired folder, and select the folder. Tap 'More' button (bottom right); tap 'Add to desktop'.
Q10. How do I connect a USB key to the Nook?
You need a female-to-female USB gender changer, available on eBay and Amazon for about $1. Use it to connect USB key to Nook cable, and connect cable to Nook. Install and run USB Host app (http://nook.rootshell.ru/hd/USBHostSwitcher.apk
) to enable USB host mode. [Note: The Quick Setting option to change USB mode is no longer around with the new official CM builds for Nook.] The USB key will automatically be mounted to /storage/USB0
CM now recognizes FAT32, exFAT, NTFS, and ext4. USB-powered hard drives do not work, as they require more power than the Nook can supply; USB hard drives with external power should work, as do devices connected to a powered USB hub. SD card readers may not work. Some have reported better device compatibility when using an unpowered hub as an intermediary.
When 'USB Host' mode is enabled, Nook cannot charge or be connected to PC. Disable it in the app to regain normal use.
Q11: How do I use a mouse and/or keyboard with the Nook?
The Nook supports both mouse & keyboard via USB (using same method as above to connect USB keys), or Bluetooth. The Nook should have enough to power both USB mouse & keyboard of the normal variety, using a USB splitter or a hub. Adjust mouse tracking speed in Settings > Language & Input > Pointer speed.
Q12: How do I print from my apps?
Google Cloud Print. http://www.google.com/cloudprint/learn/apps.html
Q13: How do I block ads within browsers and from ad-supported apps?
Google has banned ad blockers from its Play Store, and you'll need to sideload one. The consensus is that AdAway is the best, and is open-source. AdBlock Plus is also available, although ABP now allows ads if vendors pay ABP to let the ads through. Note: Some ad-supported services, such as videos with ads, will FAIL if their ads are blocked. Be aware and disable the blocker as a first step when a service/software doesn't work.
Q14: How do I get Adobe Flash to work in my browser?
Flash is no longer officially supported in Android 4.1 and later, having been obsoleted for HTML5. There are still many web sites that require Flash, however. For these, you can sideload an older Flash version, and use a browser (Firefox or Dolphin) that supports Flash. You may need to enable Flash in the browser's settings.
Get Flash Player from the Adobe site (scroll down to midpage for Android 4.0 archives):
Q15: Do I have to root or unlock the bootloader? I read that you have to do these to use custom ROM.
No. This eMMC install replaces the stock ROM with CM10.1, which comes pre-rooted. The bootloader lock was worked around by verygreen
, the lead dev who also ported CM to the Nook HD and HD+.
Q16: What is 'CPU governor' and what do the different settings mean?
A CPU governor regulates the CPU frequency, and is one of several ways to adjust an Android device's performance in a trade-off between battery life and responsiveness. In CM, access the CPU governor via Settings > Performance > Processor. For general use, the default 'Interactive Governor' is considered to be the best balance between battery life and performance.
The below link has descriptions for the many types of governors that exist for Android, not all of which are useful. CM's selections are a practical subset.
Q17: I've downloaded some files. Where are they located in the Nook?
Run File Manager from the Apps screen. Tap on Bookmarks icon at lower right corner. Internal storage is located in /storage/emulated/0
; downloaded files by default will be in /storage/emulated/0/Download
. (Download locations can vary by the app, although all user files should be within this area.) Files on the physical SD card are found at /storage/sdcard1
. Files on a USB device are located at /storage/usb0
The bundled File Manager by default runs in Safe mode. To access files outside of the internal user storage, you'll need to raise your access level. Tap on the File Manager's vertical ellipsis (menu) icon, select Settings. Select 'Access Mode' > 'Root Access mode' > ' Remember choice for 10 minutes'.
Q18: I've installed some apps. Where are they located?
System (bundled) apps are located in /system/app
. User-installed apps are in /data/app
. App data and configuration are normally stored in /storage/emulated/0/Android/
. Apps are installed into Nook's internal (eMMC) storage and not the SD card.
Q19: I've backed up my system with CWM into internal storage. Where is the backup located?
The backup is located in /data/media/clockworkmod/backup
. System (Nandroid) backups are normally saved to SD card, since backups take up substantial space, and the device's storage capacity is limited. If you want to save backups to internal storage, an easier way is to install the ROM Manager app and use that to manage your backups.