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BN Nook Simple Touch/USB host mode

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Enable USB host mode on the Nook Simple Touch to attach a keyboard, flash drive, microphone, and headphones, etc.

  • Instructions assume:
    • a new, in-box machine (avoid refurbished, which can have bad batteries)
    • a non-tech user.
  • Some command line work required.
  • First, read through all instructions first, below and at links.
  • Follow all instructions closely

related threads:
USB Host for non-techs
[WIP] USB Host support (working) development thread
Project: E-Paper Tablet (touch-typable!) where project started on mobileread.com

Hardware Required

  • Nook Simple Touch
  • USB cable (A/microB)
  • USB card reader
  • microSD card, 4GB+, SanDisk brand, Class 2 or 4

For keyboard and flash drive

  • OTG adapter, USB male microB/female A
  • Hub, powered (recommended)

Install 1

This is a summary. Find detailed instructions at each link.

  1. Unbox and charge device. Use Quick Guide.
  2. Update device to 1.1.2.
  3. Backup NST with noogie You just need noogie, so only follow instructions from the top of the page through step 8 of the 17-step list near the bottom. Ignore all instructions for downloading and installing URamdisk (that comes later). Note: Ignore recommendation of class 6 card; card listed above works fine. Once you've burned the noogie image, if you get lost, Jocala's backup/restore page has a few tips for you.
  4. Format microSD card with fat32 filesystem. To it:
    1. Burn CWR image (Clockworkmod Recovery) Note: burning an image, which you just did with Noogie, is different than copying one.
    2. Copy:
      1. Minimal Touch zips (I recommend 2Gb versions to allow for backups)
      2. USB Host MT pack zip (includes keyboard apps)
  5. Boot NST with card to install above zips
  6. To use keyboard, see "Operate" below

Install 2

System software

  • uImage enabled for USB host mode

Utility software

  • UsbMode.apk, an application to enable host mode when desired

Steps

  1. Update to latest OS version (optional)
  2. Root the Nook to gain access
  3. Replace uImage on the boot partition
  4. Install UsbMode.apk

Options

Operate

The current state of the kernel driver that supports USB host mode is a bit unreliable. You may need to experiment a bit to get USB host mode to work.

Important: You must be using an adapter cable that clearly says OTG. You can find them all over the internet. It is not important if they say that it is for a Samsung or HTC or any other brand, but it must clearly say OTG.

Due to the internal state of the driver, this works most reliably after a reboot. Plug the keyboard into the OTG adapter, plug the OTG adapter into the Nook. Use your USB host mode utility to switch the power regulator "off" and switch into "host" mode. Leave "OTG" mode alone. It might be useful later. If you are lucky, the Nook will go into host mode and identify the keyboard.

If that didn't work, go into "peripheral" mode then back into "host" mode.

If this doesn't work, disconnect the keyboard from the OTG adapter, leaving the OTG adapter connected to the Nook. Switch to host mode. Does the LED turn a solid green? If so, plug the keyboard in. See if it is recognized.