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[DEV] Unofficial Clockworkmod recovery for Lenovo Ideapad A1

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gmarkall

Retired Recognized Developer
Dec 22, 2010
378
559
London
This version of ClockworkMod recovery has been produced by Milaq

There's currently a github repository for the device/lenovo/a1 folder in the Cyanogenmod Android tree at https://github.com/gmarkall/android_device_ideapad_a1

Current status: CWM v6.0.1.2 by Milaq

Download: http://milaq.exnet.me/downloads/android/a107/cwm-6.0.1.2-ideapad-a1.zip

What appears to work: backing up, erasing and restoring /system, /data, /cache and /sd-ext. Installing zips from internal and external SD cards. Touchscreen calibration. Partitioning the external SD card. Installing OTA packages also works, but they will wipe out this recovery

What's not supported: backup/restore of the x-loader, u-boot, kernel or ramdisks.

Installation of 6.0.1.2 from the stock recovery

WARNING/DISCLAIMER: Although the recovery has now been tested by several people and there have been no problems reported, there is still a small risk of damage or problems due to unforeseen issues. The unlikely worst case scenario is that your A1 will be bricked. In the event that something goes wrong, I will do my best to help recover the situation, but I am not liable for any damage incurred. It is up to you to decide if you want to take this risk. If you are not comfortable with the risk, then do not attempt to install the recovery!

Now that's out of the way, and if you're willing to take the risk, the following steps should be taken to install the recovery:

1. Download the file "cwm-6.0.1.2-ideapad-a1.zip" from the hosting page.
2. Copy this file to the root of the internal SD card and rename it to update.zip (so the full path should be /sdcard/update.zip)
3. Power down the Ideapad.
4. Hold down volume down and turn the power back on, keeping volume down held until the tablet boots up to an image of an arrow out of a box with an android (this is the stock recovery).
5. Wait whilst Clockworkmod recovery installs. The progress bar should fill up.
6. Once the installation has finished, you should see a green tick in a green triangle and the ideapad will power down.
7. You can now power on as normal to get back to Android, or power on with volume down held to get into Clockworkmod recovery
8. Please post your experiences, and any issues you encounter in responses to this thread - feedback will be really helpful to smooth out any issues, and/or to gain confidence that the recovery is working properly.

Installation from an older version of Clockworkmod

If you have installed a previously released version of of this CWM, you can install the latest version in the usual way in which zips are installed in CWM.

Going back to stock

You can install the stock-a1-recovery.zip file using Clockworkmod to go back to the stock recovery.

IRC Channel

#ideapad-a1 on irc.freenode.net

Thanks to

Milaq, who built the recovery
Henge, for providing me with information before I got my Ideapad
Spiegeleixxl, for information about the bootloader and how to produce a bootable SD card
Imritechere, Otti17, and Mikerizzo97 for testing out the recovery
Xbdesign, for translating installation instructions into German, and testing the 5.0.2.8 recovery and MBR
Kryszan, for translating installation instructions into Polish
Monsefito, for Spanish translation of instructions
 
Last edited:

henge.

Member
Dec 15, 2011
11
11
Yes! All the best for your endeavor!
Hmm, let's see...
Code:
$ cat /proc/emmc
/proc/emmc: No such file or directory
Maybe this helps...?
Code:
$ cat /proc/partitions
major minor  #blocks  name
 179        0   15388672 mmcblk0
 179        1     292969 mmcblk0p1
 179        2     195312 mmcblk0p2
 179        3    1953125 mmcblk0p3
 179        4      34180 mmcblk0p4
 179        5   12856445 mmcblk0p5
 179       16    3872768 mmcblk1
 179       17    3872737 mmcblk1p1
 
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gmarkall

Retired Recognized Developer
Dec 22, 2010
378
559
London
Hi Henge,

Thanks for that! I didn't realise there would be no /proc/emmc - perhaps it had a /proc/mtd instead...

Would you be able to show me the output of the mount command as well please? Then I should be able to figure out which of those partitions is which of system, data, etc..

Many thanks for your help!
 

henge.

Member
Dec 15, 2011
11
11
No, no /proc/mtd either.
Here's the output of mount:

Code:
$ mount
rootfs / rootfs ro,relatime 0 0
tmpfs /dev tmpfs rw,relatime,mode=755 0 0
devpts /dev/pts devpts rw,relatime,mode=600 0 0
proc /proc proc rw,relatime 0 0
sysfs /sys sysfs rw,relatime 0 0
none /acct cgroup rw,relatime,cpuacct 0 0
tmpfs /mnt/asec tmpfs rw,relatime,mode=755,gid=1000 0 0
tmpfs /mnt/obb tmpfs rw,relatime,mode=755,gid=1000 0 0
/dev/block/mmcblk0p1 /system ext3 ro,relatime,errors=continue,barrier=0,data=writeback 0 0
/dev/block/mmcblk0p2 /cache ext3 rw,nosuid,nodev,relatime,errors=continue,barrier=0,data=writeback 0 0
/dev/block/mmcblk0p3 /data ext3 rw,nosuid,nodev,relatime,errors=continue,barrier=0,data=writeback 0 0
/dev/block/mmcblk0p4 /.secure ext3 rw,nosuid,nodev,relatime,errors=continue,barrier=0,data=writeback 0 0
none /dev/cpuctl cgroup rw,relatime,cpu 0 0
debugfs /debug debugfs rw,relatime 0 0
/dev/block/mmcblk0p5 /mnt/sdcard vfat rw,dirsync,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,uid=1000,gid=1015,fmask=0002,dmask=0002,allow_utime=0020,codepage=cp437,iocharset=iso8859-1,shortname=mixed,utf8,errors=remount-ro 0 0
/dev/block/vold/179:17 /mnt/sdcard/removable_sdcard vfat rw,dirsync,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,uid=1000,gid=1015,fmask=0002,dmask=0002,allow_utime=0020,codepage=cp437,iocharset=iso8859-1,shortname=mixed,utf8,errors=remount-ro 0 0
/dev/block/vold/179:17 /mnt/secure/asec vfat rw,dirsync,nosuid,nodev,noexec,relatime,uid=1000,gid=1015,fmask=0002,dmask=0002,allow_utime=0020,codepage=cp437,iocharset=iso8859-1,shortname=mixed,utf8,errors=remount-ro 0 0
tmpfs /mnt/sdcard/removable_sdcard/.android_secure tmpfs ro,relatime,size=0k,mode=000 0 0
 

Wascha

Member
Dec 12, 2011
14
0
Keep us updated on your efforts please and thanks a ton in advance! Looking forward to your progress!

Gesendet von meinem A1_07 mit Tapatalk
 

gmarkall

Retired Recognized Developer
Dec 22, 2010
378
559
London
I updated the recovery.fstab according to the information that Henge provided and rebuilt the recovery. I think one piece of information that I'm currently missing is the erasesize for the emmc, but I'm not sure what command should be used to find out what it is since there was not /proc/emmc or /proc/mtd.

I've also been examining the OTA update to see how it flashes partitions. It appears as if there is a utility included called "fuse" that writes partition images. It looks as though the fuse binary isn't on the system partition in the OTA, but my present thinking is that it might still work for flashing the recovery ramdisk. I've made the fuse binary available on the download page linked from the github repository, but I'd still recommend against trying to flash the recovery unless you're really sure you know what you're doing, as I haven't been able to test it yet.
 
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sinanju

Senior Member
Mar 13, 2006
337
87
Happy to help when you get to the CM stage. Post or PM if there's anything I can do. At the moment, I've got the ear of a Lenovo customer advocate who is working on getting the code properly published. I'll ping him after the holiday and report back.
 
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gmarkall

Retired Recognized Developer
Dec 22, 2010
378
559
London
Hi Sinanju,

Thanks! When I posted the message on the Lenovo forum I mentioned that I was personally after the Linux kernel sources - however, subsequently I noticed that the tablet also uses the u-boot bootloader, which I believe is also GPLed and the sources may be helpful - have you heard any mention about this?
 

TDO

Senior Member
Feb 15, 2006
339
37
The Nook Color uses almost the same hardware (but no gps and camera).

It has a really good working CM7 build. So maybe this would be a good starting point.

It also uses u-boot and has a includes a modified one in CM7 (booting from sd or internal).
 
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gmarkall

Retired Recognized Developer
Dec 22, 2010
378
559
London
Hi TDO,

Thanks - I had noticed the CM7 for the Nook Color - I've been using it to guide me so far in building the recovery. I had also seen that it includes the modified u-boot but I wasn't sure what the purpose of it was.

Edit: Apologies, I misunderstood your post at first. Re-reading it, I understand that the purpose of the modified u-boot is to allow booting from the internal or external SD card.
 
Last edited:

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  • 38
    This version of ClockworkMod recovery has been produced by Milaq

    There's currently a github repository for the device/lenovo/a1 folder in the Cyanogenmod Android tree at https://github.com/gmarkall/android_device_ideapad_a1

    Current status: CWM v6.0.1.2 by Milaq

    Download: http://milaq.exnet.me/downloads/android/a107/cwm-6.0.1.2-ideapad-a1.zip

    What appears to work: backing up, erasing and restoring /system, /data, /cache and /sd-ext. Installing zips from internal and external SD cards. Touchscreen calibration. Partitioning the external SD card. Installing OTA packages also works, but they will wipe out this recovery

    What's not supported: backup/restore of the x-loader, u-boot, kernel or ramdisks.

    Installation of 6.0.1.2 from the stock recovery

    WARNING/DISCLAIMER: Although the recovery has now been tested by several people and there have been no problems reported, there is still a small risk of damage or problems due to unforeseen issues. The unlikely worst case scenario is that your A1 will be bricked. In the event that something goes wrong, I will do my best to help recover the situation, but I am not liable for any damage incurred. It is up to you to decide if you want to take this risk. If you are not comfortable with the risk, then do not attempt to install the recovery!

    Now that's out of the way, and if you're willing to take the risk, the following steps should be taken to install the recovery:

    1. Download the file "cwm-6.0.1.2-ideapad-a1.zip" from the hosting page.
    2. Copy this file to the root of the internal SD card and rename it to update.zip (so the full path should be /sdcard/update.zip)
    3. Power down the Ideapad.
    4. Hold down volume down and turn the power back on, keeping volume down held until the tablet boots up to an image of an arrow out of a box with an android (this is the stock recovery).
    5. Wait whilst Clockworkmod recovery installs. The progress bar should fill up.
    6. Once the installation has finished, you should see a green tick in a green triangle and the ideapad will power down.
    7. You can now power on as normal to get back to Android, or power on with volume down held to get into Clockworkmod recovery
    8. Please post your experiences, and any issues you encounter in responses to this thread - feedback will be really helpful to smooth out any issues, and/or to gain confidence that the recovery is working properly.

    Installation from an older version of Clockworkmod

    If you have installed a previously released version of of this CWM, you can install the latest version in the usual way in which zips are installed in CWM.

    Going back to stock

    You can install the stock-a1-recovery.zip file using Clockworkmod to go back to the stock recovery.

    IRC Channel

    #ideapad-a1 on irc.freenode.net

    Thanks to

    Milaq, who built the recovery
    Henge, for providing me with information before I got my Ideapad
    Spiegeleixxl, for information about the bootloader and how to produce a bootable SD card
    Imritechere, Otti17, and Mikerizzo97 for testing out the recovery
    Xbdesign, for translating installation instructions into German, and testing the 5.0.2.8 recovery and MBR
    Kryszan, for translating installation instructions into Polish
    Monsefito, for Spanish translation of instructions
    6
    Update: I got the CWM recovery that I built flashed onto the pad and booting up. Some testing will need to be done next. Screenshot:

    screen.jpg
    6
    Newer release

    I've made a newer release (rev2) which is now available on the download page. Basically the changes are that the removable SD card now works, and the "reboot recovery" option reboots back to the recovery rather than incorrectly booting back to system.

    I had also intended to add the "partition internal SD card" option for this release, but I had a couple of issues with it so far, so I decided to leave it for another release - I thought it better to release this version since a couple of people had asked about using the SD card slot.

    As always, please report your experiences with this version - I'm looking forward to hearing how people get on with it! :)

    EDIT: I believe the following information was incorrect, but I've left the text here so that the context of the conversation is understandable

    As far as I understand it, there is a little bit of weirdness to do with the naming SD cards in CWM, apparently due to historical reasons. I read this post which seems to explain it well. In summary, the SD card that is part of the built in memory gets mounted on /sdcard, and is referred to as the "SD card". The SD card that can be physically inserted and removed by the user is mounted on /emmc, and is referred to as the "internal SD card" - this is a bit confusing, as it seems to be backwards. However, that seems to be the way it is - if anyone has a better explanation/fix, please let me know!
    4
    Update:

    I've fixed the reboot issue and added touchscreen calibration. The updated version is on the hosting page and is called cwm-5.0.2.7-rev1-ideapad-a1.zip.

    If you try it, please let me know how it works for you by replying to this thread - thanks in advance :)
    4
    So it seems that backing up, erasing and restoring each of /system, /data and /cache is working. (I don't plan to support backup up the kernel, ramdisk or bootloader for now). Installing zip files from the SD card also seems to work (I tried it with the lepad_a1_rooter.zip that someone mentioned earlier).

    Are there other features of clockworkmod recovery that people are interested in that I've not mentioned above? I'd like to make sure that things have had a bit more testing, and make sure I'm aware of the things that people are likely to use it for.