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Touchpad Toolbox, How to unpack and repack

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By HP_TOUCHPAD, Senior Member on 10th January 2019, 12:32 AM
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What is the Touchpad Toolbox?
https://forum.xda-developers.com/sho....php?t=2756314
A set of Scripts (programs) that allows:
Easily manage LVM, one of the greatest features of the TP.
https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/LVM
Create Android, WebOS volumens, or total reset.
It can make a fresh /boot directory installation adding moboot.
Reflash the battery Firmware
Install specific, older version of recovery and Rom.

How is done?
https://webos-internals.org/wiki/Angstrom_on_Touchpad
A small Linux OS is built into an img (ext2) file system and is loaded into memory as a RAMDisk.
Angstrom v2015.01
Built from branch: master
Revision: 038d832
Target system: arm-angstrom-linux-gnueabi
This information is from the file angstrom-version located in the /etc folder of the RAMDisk.

Following this instructions will unpack the RAMDisk and Kernel, then can be repack as it would with any Android system.
All this is done on Linux ubuntu 18.04 x64 system. If you have any other OS you can install Linux as a virtual machine.

1 .Create a directory
hptoolbox

2. Unzip TPToolbox-2015-01-08-v42.zip to the directory hptoolbox (http://downloads.codefi.re/jcsullins...-01-08-v42.zip

3. Open terminal in the hptoolbox directoty and paste the following commands.
Code:
dumpimage -i TPToolbox-2015-01-08-v42.bin uImage.kernel

dumpimage -i TPToolbox-2015-01-08-v42.bin -p 1 RAMDisk_Compress

dd if=RAMDisk_Compress of=RAMDisk.xz bs=64 skip=1

xz -d RAMDisk.xz
## The RAMDisk which is 67.1MB is a Linux rev 0.0 ext2 filesystem data img file.
4. Creat a loop disk to have read and write access of the RAMDisk
Code:
sudo udisksctl loop-setup -f RAMDisk
## Mapped file RAMDisk as /dev/loop16 (this is only on my system and it will be different on others)

5. Mount the 67 MB Loop Device, it can easly be done using Disks

6. Open your file manager as sudo in (my system is nautilus, it can be different on other Linux)
Code:
[email protected]:~$ sudo nautilus
[sudo] password for ubuntu:
7. The settings for the ToolBox are in /usr/tptoolbox.
You have complete control on all the files, but read what each script says on top:
Code:
# This script is Copyright (c) 2014 James Sullins, All rights reserved.
# James (JC) Sullins, aka jcsullins
# No modifications or distribution without permission
To repack the Kernel and RAMDisk
1. Unmount the RAMDisk img and Detach the loop device

2 Open terminal in the hptoolbox directory and paste the following commands.
Code:
mkimage -A arm -T ramdisk -C none -n RAMDisk -d RAMDisk uImage.RAMDisk

mkimage -A arm -T multi -C none -n "Tenderloin ToolBOX Modified" -d uImage.kernel:uImage.RAMDisk uImage.ToolBox_Modified
In my system I can not make RAMDisk using xz compression but it works uncompress is just a 70MB file.
If the RAMDisk is compress using (( xz -9 RAMDisk )) then the file size will be as the original but it will not be recognized by the kernel at boot.

3. To load using the novacom driver:
Code:
novacom boot mem:// <uImage.ToolBox_Modified
Many thanks to jcsullins for creating the ToolBox ,which allowed many users to easily transition to Android from WebOS and gave new life to a device that could have been in landfills many years ago. In my opinion this has been the greatest Tool for the TP and finding out how it works made it even more amazing!
 
 
11th January 2019, 09:57 PM |#2  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HP_TOUCHPAD

What is the Touchpad Toolbox?

--SNIP--

You've done a great job figuring that out HP_TOUCHPAD! As a result, if Sullins agreed (assuming he would even answer the request), the TPToolbox could be modified fairly easily to handle the latest ROMS, GAPPS, and RECOVERIES. For example, it turns out that there is an unused parameter that would allow TPToolbox to install the zipfiles without any checks. Additionally, it is simple to bypass having to install a GAPPS with the ROM, or to keep all checks but the one that checks for a compatible GAPPS..
11th January 2019, 11:09 PM |#3  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shumash

You've done a great job figuring that out HP_TOUCHPAD! As a result, if Sullins agreed (assuming he would even answer the request), the TPToolbox could be modified fairly easily to handle the latest ROMS, GAPPS, and RECOVERIES. For example, it turns out that there is an unused parameter that would allow TPToolbox to install the zipfiles without any checks. Additionally, it is simple to bypass having to install a GAPPS with the ROM, or to keep all checks but the one that checks for a compatible GAPPS..

Thank you, and yes the ToolBox can be modified very easily only if JSullins agreed.
But there is only one section that needs to be modified to update the toolbox and make compatible with all ROMS now and forever. In my opinion there is no need for the Toolbox to install any ROMS as that is the work of TWRP to do and it does it well.
This is the only modification that needs to be done to update the toolbox and make it useful forever!
In the folder toolbox/bin/make_boot (open the script)
add the following under this line : (do_run cp /usr/tptoolbox/data/moboot /mnt/boot/uImage.moboot)
Code:
do_run cp /usr/tptoolbox/data/uImage.TWRP /mnt/boot/uImage.TWRP
do_run cp /usr/tptoolbox/data/android.default.recovery /mnt/boot/android.default.recovery
do_run cp /usr/tptoolbox/data/moboot.default /mnt/boot/moboot.default
do_run cp /usr/tptoolbox/data/uImage.ToolBOX /mnt/boot/uImage.ToolBOX
copy the files to /usr/tptoolbox/data/
uImage.TWRP
android.default.recovery
moboot.default
uImage.ToolBOX (this is the toolbox.bin, renamed it to be loadable from the moboot menu.

save the script.

I do not need to tell you "the Linux Guru" what is going on, but just for the record.
When recreating the boot it will install TWRP into boot and also the ToolBOX.
Reboot and now you have TWRP and also the ToolBOX in the moboot menu and you can install any ROM using TWRP.
This will make it super easy for all users to start fresh!
Complete reset (it will install TWRP, recovery by default) nothing extra for the user to do!
Reflash battery firmare
Resize Android volumens
Reboot and install ROM

I do not think it can be any easier for anyone than this and the change is minimal!
12th January 2019, 05:07 PM |#4  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HP_TOUCHPAD

Thank you, and yes the ToolBox can be modified very easily only if JSullins agreed.
But there is only one section that needs to be modified to update the toolbox and make compatible with all ROMS now and forever. In my opinion there is no need for the Toolbox to install any ROMS as that is the work of TWRP to do and it does it well.

--SNIP--

I do not think it can be any easier for anyone than this and the change is minimal!

I like what you're suggesting, but it's not that easy. I think you're creating a different application. The python scripts need to be modified to remove the "Install Android" option. Making users decide how to (re)install non-datamedia (DM) or DM ROMS by themselves was one of the things HPToolbox solved. I think that a better way is just to prevent all the checks that are done for three zips, gapp/rom capatibility, etc. and let users install the gapps themselves, although I can see a way to expand the allowable gapps dictionary to include the latest versions

Additionally, unless you resize /boot (which is fixed in one of the python scripts and may require lots of other changes), users who want to retain WebOS (there may be one or two left.) won't be able to install Android because there won't be enough room having uImage.TPToolbox there.
12th January 2019, 10:54 PM |#5  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shumash

I like what you're suggesting, but it's not that easy. I think you're creating a different application.
There is no changes to the menu is only adding uImage.TWRP to be copy to boot.
In the Toolbox MAIN MENU
The option: Complete Data Reset
Call the script: toolbox/bin/make_boot
It will completely erase and format boot then copy files located in (/usr/tptoolbox/data/) over to /boot
It is part of the toolbox option and how it works. Nothing needs to be added or the main script modified.
By adding this code to the already (toolbox/bin/make_boot) script

Code:
do_run cp /usr/tptoolbox/data/uImage.TWRP /mnt/boot/uImage.TWRP
do_run cp /usr/tptoolbox/data/android.default.recovery /mnt/boot/android.default.recovery
do_run cp /usr/tptoolbox/data/moboot.default /mnt/boot/moboot.default
And copy those files to (/usr/tptoolbox/data/).
When the user select the option in the MENU to Complete Data Reset, it will do as always the only difference is, it will install TWRP automatically, which in my opinion it needs to be there to install and back up.

The python scripts need to be modified to remove the "Install Android" option. Making users decide how to (re)install non-datamedia (DM) or DM ROMS by themselves was one of the things HPToolbox solved.
The Install Android can be there as is and do as you are suggesting which is to remove the limitation and be able to install any recovery or gapps
I think that a better way is just to prevent all the checks that are done for three zips, gapp/rom capatibility, etc. and let users install the gapps themselves, although I can see a way to expand the allowable gapps dictionary to include the latest versions.
Yes that is perfect and the way it should have been from the beginning, to allow installation of any ROM. There is nothing malicious that anybody can do to brick the device. Reloading the toolbox (novacom boot mem:// < uImage.Toolbox) will recreate everything even if /boot is destroy.

Additionally, unless you resize /boot (which is fixed in one of the python scripts and may require lots of other changes), users who want to retain WebOS (there may be one or two left.) won't be able to install Android because there won't be enough room having uImage.TPToolbox there.

Correct if uImage.Toolbox ( 11 MB ) file is copy to boot and TWRP there will be 8 MB left for one uImage boot file, only one OS will be able to boot.
That could be an option and does not need to be copy to boot, but it could make it easier for "Android only users" to have it handy and no PC will be required to load it again.

Here is another simple quick modification to avoid confusion and make it easier.
When you select Install Android, the USB media is mounted and a directory /ttinstall is created. At the same time the directory is created a shortcut (link) can be place of a landing web page where the links to all ROM and Recovery can be download from, that the user can click and download the correct Recovery, ROM and gapps.
Make it super easy and avoid confusion of what to install and where to get it from. It could be a landing page any where that can be updated.
This is another issue to think about. To load any uImage to fix a problematic TP, a PC is need it with novacom drivers install.
This is the command that will fix any TP:
novacom boot mem:// <
If novacom is not install in the user PC or not working properly nothing can be done.
Idea.
Create a basic Linux OS, bare minimum that will run anywhere. Have the novacom install and the toolbox in it, with a basic browser to get the files.
The Linux OS can be distributed as a Live CD (.iso) that can be booted on any PC. This will guarantee that the novacom driver will work and load the toolbox or any other uImage into the TP.
I made my own live CD of Ubuntu 18.04 ( is a 2GB file ) that has everything set up and do any kind of work on the TP and be able to use it on any PC.
13th January 2019, 02:13 AM |#6  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HP_TOUCHPAD

__SNIP__

All good ideas, but this is much easier.
13th January 2019, 02:58 AM |#7  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shumash

All good ideas, but this is much easier.

Crazy complicated !
Take a very close look at the steps.
" 1) complete data reset"
Before this happens the novacom driver needs to be install. It used to be an easy one to do, but with new OS, windows or Linux it can get complicated. Nothing can be done unless this driver is properly install and the environment is properly set to load the uImage. This can easily create errors and frustration and not a successful install.
The universal Java installer used to work, not any more. It will be great to have a portable novacom driver, but I do not know if that is even possible to load and work in different OS.

But anyways doing the first steps is to load the Toolbox to do a complete data reset.
Well if the toolbox is modified, once the complete data reset is done uImage.TWRP will be already copy into boot.
The only thing you have to do is reboot the device select TWRP and do the installation as regular.
No more steps need it, and nothing else to download or install.
One step and done!
But now you need to run:
TWRP_TmpLoad_v03_win.bat
Then install TWRP, because is temporally loaded in memory.
What it does is loading uImage.TWRP using:
novacom boot mem:// <uImage.TWRP
The same way the Toolbox gets loaded in the first place.
If the Toolbox restriction gets remove then it will install TWRP, and then reboot.
Like I said the magic command is:
novacom boot mem://
Any boot uImage can be load it that way, but the only thing that will reset everything is the Toolbox.
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