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Full Version: Zaurus WAS Bricked, Now solved!
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Foxdie
Edit: This used to be a post called "Zaurus Bricked, suggestions?" but as I've now recovered it which is documented on Page 3 I don't think it needs any more attention other than from those of you who have near-bricked your C series Zaurus and although you have the option to do a NAND Flash Restore it fails with the error "Format Error". Good luck with your restores people and take better care of your Zaurii, I sure will smile.gif

Well for the last month my C760 has been out of action, it was killed by a combination of my own stupidity and a bug which has since been resolved with the Cacko ROM and Bluemonkey Bluetooth CF cards.

Here's a retrace of my steps:

The bug above meant that I couldn't power on my Z, I could get into the service menu but not the ROM flashing screen (where you hold down OK as you turn the unit on). I thought at the time that perhaps there was a problem with the NAND Flash, so I performed a NAND FLASH Read test. Naturally I assumed that because this said READ and had no mention of Writing that this wouldn't affect the Zaurus. The menu option I chose is outlined in this path:

Main Service menu > Page 3/3 > Option 7 EXTRA MENU > Option 1 Zaurus Test > Page 2/4 > Option 8 NAND Flash Read

I did that and it was so far back that I can't remember the result of it, but it definately didn't mention anything about erasing / deleting / changing anything. Then I tried Clear Diag Flag Option 6 in the EXTRA MENU and then Reset Option 9 in the same menu.

Now, at this point I didn't think I had done anything wrong. I will openly admit this was probably an arrogant / retarded view on my part and boy oh boy do I feel like a complete f***ing idiot now!

The Zaurus reset and then the Mail LED was flashing green. I felt sick at this point.

In the past I've experienced this after tinkering with the other service menu options. I should have been smarter than this but we all have our days where intelligence dissapears but luckily a NAND Flash Restore borrowing a friends 256MB CF card has fixed my Zaurus...

I talked to sashz to see if he could help out and he pointed me to a page with some wierd files to put on a CF card. I learnt today from reading externe.net's forums that this is a low level recovery solution for those that can't even get into the service menu but I tried it anyway. I couldn't get this to work, it didn't do anything (and I have no way of monitoring the serial port) so I gave up for a while as I was thoroughly annoyed with it.


About a week ago offroadgeek was very kind in giving me my own 256MB CF card, that arrived today so I downloaded the SYSTC760.DBK file to do another NAND Flash Restore from. As soon as I got the card I formatted it as FAT16 and put the file on it and tried reflashing. The error I get is this:



I have tried numerous reformats and different ways of copying the file to the CF card, I even borrowed my friends CF card which I *know* has worked in the past for a NAND Flash restore, but nothing seems to work. Right now I'm scared that something that cost me $750 / £500 is nothing more than a paperweight sad.gif

I can access the service menu fine and post numerous screenshots of any screen there if it would help, here's the bottom part of the main service menu screen, I'm hoping it shows something that can help initially:



Right now I'm at a loss, I've searched both this and externe's forums for help and I've tried what they've suggested and I don't know what to do. Please tell me there's someone out there that can help me!


PS. I'm not sure if my Zaurus has a warranty, it was definately bought in the last 12 months but I don't know if it has a warranty, I bought it from a guy called Lawrence Camera on eBay, all I remember about him is he's a good friend of the person who runs Conics.net. I doubt he'll replace it because of what I've done to it :?
gene
I had a very similar problem. I had a known good rom and I wasnt able to do a nand reflash. The rom i got was one from a german company that sells zarus c860. It has a known good rom available on its site for c860 and 7xx. I was getting samew problem using a compact flash and i had to use an sd card to reflash it. Try a different card. It can be very finicky.
Foxdie
I've tried a SanDisk CF card and a Kingston Technology card, both 256MB and both formatted as FAT16 (and both formatted at least twice). I have also tried redownloading the nand flash restore file and try again but still doesn't work sad.gif

I don't know anyone with a 256MB or greater Secure Digital card either, unless there's another zaurus user who lives near Birmingham in the UK who has one he can help me restore with if we meet up in the town center (I keep my fingers crossed for that but I expect no luck).
albertr
If you can get into service mode, your Z is NOt bricked. I wish I could help, but I don't know ways around your service menu (my 5500 has very basic service menu - angel loader, while yours could be using a separate linux kernel with a graphical service program). Try to contact Sash or someone else who's experienced with flashing xscale zaurus'es. As gene says, try different CF and SD cards. Also, that "format error" message that you are getting is not very descriptive. Could it be NAND flash format error? Maybe you need to format NAND before attempting to restore? Just a wild guess, don't follow it, ask someone who knows. In any case, don't give up yet, if it's not dead, then it can be revived.
-albertr
gene
yeah, like albert says if you get service menu then it aint bricked, find someone or buy a 256 meg sd and give it another go
gene
Also, here is the link to the german site with the ROM http://www.trisoft.de that i used to reflash. Good luck!
Foxdie
Unfortunately I can't read german, and even with a web page translator it's difficult to follow. Can you tell me where the files reside?
padishah_emperor
I'm sending you a private message, check your inbox.
markb
Hi foxdie,

I have a C860 and a 256MB SD card.
I also work near Birmingham city centre.
Let me know if I can be any help.
I assume you'll bring the expertise, I'll just bring the hardware. :-)

- Mark
braindrop
if i was on that side of the water i would loan you my sd... as it is though i'lll light a candle.
Foxdie
QUOTE
Hi foxdie,

I have a C860 and a 256MB SD card.
I also work near Birmingham city centre.
Let me know if I can be any help.
I assume you'll bring the expertise, I'll just bring the hardware. :-)

- Mark


Heh cool, do you have any Instant Messengers? You can find mine in my profile smile.gif
gene
You asked for link to rom for c-760, here it is. I used one from same company for my c860 it worked like a Charm. I'd bet good money this will work for you. Best of luck dude.

http://babelfish.altavista.com/babelfish/u...0NAND291003.zip
Stubear
I've had the "format error" when the DBK was corrupted. If reformating the SD/CF card doesn't work try downloading the DBK again, I've had IE and occasionally Mozilla give me dodgy files that worked fine after redownloading

Good Luck

Stu
Foxdie
Well I tried both downloading the NAND flash file from another website and with a different browser, I also tried it with a 256MB SD card that markb has mailed me (thankyou! I'll return it on Saturday, catch me on MSN to discuss a meeting time).

None of these work. sashz recommends I find a zaurus serial lead to check the output when flashing to see what the error is in more detail. Anyone able to lend me a zaurus serial cable? Apparently any model zaurus serial cable will work..

I also tried to contact the guy I bought it from but so far he has not responded after 2 days, I also tried to contact the guy behind conics.net (because they are good friends) but he doesn't respond either. I also phoned Sharp UK and they said that Sharp Japan is a different company(??!) and that I'd have to deal with Sharp Japan instead.

My heart really is sinking on this one sad.gif
treke
Sharp Japan, Sharp UK, and Sharp USA are pretty much separate entities that often share product designs between themselves.
derekp
Foxdie,
Does your 760 have a standard JTAG connector? If so, then mabe this can help: http://openwince.sourceforge.net/jtag/
It's an open-source jtag programmer, it also has links to a couple different circuits that can be wired up to connect a parallel port to a standard jtag connector. Only two questions need to be answered: 1) Do the various Zaurus models need a special cable to connect to the xscale jtag interface, and 2) is a NAND backup good enough to use as an input file for the jtag software.
I personally don't have any experience with jtag programming, so I'm hoping someone else here can answer this. I'm assuming that with the proper setup, you'd be able to easily unbrick any zaurus.
Foxdie
Well I heard about this JTAG thing and asked around, there IS a JTAG interface for the Zaurus but apparently you have to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement form from Sharp before they give you the specs.

I think JTAG is a little too extreme for me. I managed to get in contact with the guy I bought my Zaurus from and hopefully I'll be able to send it to him in a week and get it back in a month.
Abichai
I was wondering: where exactly are located the "flash menu" and "service menu" hardware-wise? Is there a risk of wiping them out, effectively turning a SL-Cxx0 into a brick?
Well ok, urs is close to being a brick but since u can still have some menu it's not technically dead.
And also, has Sharp Japan given any insight on this format error in NAND restoring?

Too bad we (I?) do not have any clue as to the chosen architecture behind those menus. It wud be so much easier to always have a fallback, whatever and however u flash the Z.

BTW, I've got a questioin: I've been told that u need to at least boot once the normal way to be able to get the service menu? Any clue on this?
mussi
How large must the Flash be to do a NAND restore? I have a tiny 32 MB CF card that will flash any Zaurus dead on, and is not quite finicky. Since it's small, I can even mail it. ICQ me if you need it.
Foxdie
A full NAND Flash for the C760 (and most if not all C series) is 130MB which means you need a 256MB or above card.
derekp
Foxdie,
Have you checked out the files on www.pocketworkstation.org/files/recover ?
Apparently, there is another flash method which doesn't use the service menu, but uses the NOR (non-overitable rom). So apparently you can completely recover a C series even if it is totally bricked. According to the documentation, you load the appropriate files (a bunch of .bin's) on your CF, and do the C + D key combo with a reset. You can also hook up a serial cable and monitor progress/errors off of that.
Foxdie
Yes I have derekp, I outlined this in my original post wink.gif this is why I have asked if people can send me a serial lead.

Well markb was nice enough to lend me his SL5000D cradle to see if it could be used as a serial lead, but according to sashz it can't without resoldering so I will return that to him.

Someone else offered to lend me a genuine serial lead, can that person please contact me as I'd like to take you up on the offer. I would like to diagnose what the problem is before it gets sent back to Japan in a couple of weeks, thanks.
offroadgeek
QUOTE
Someone else offered to lend me a genuine serial lead, can that person please contact me as I'd like to take you up on the offer. I would like to diagnose what the problem is before it gets sent back to Japan in a couple of weeks, thanks.


I have two serial leads, one is the Sharp one that covers the 5500 keyboard, and the other from SerialIO. I'd be happy to ship either one or both to you. You could keep the Sharp one if you'd like wink.gif.

I don't have either with me currently, so I'll have to ship them tomorrow.
Foxdie
QUOTE
QUOTE
Someone else offered to lend me a genuine serial lead, can that person please contact me as I'd like to take you up on the offer. I would like to diagnose what the problem is before it gets sent back to Japan in a couple of weeks, thanks.


I have two serial leads, one is the Sharp one that covers the 5500 keyboard, and the other from SerialIO. I'd be happy to ship either one or both to you. You could keep the Sharp one if you'd like wink.gif.

I don't have either with me currently, so I'll have to ship them tomorrow.


Okay but this time I'm forcefully paying something towards it! smile.gif
jfweber
I have been fighting the issue all week -weekend and up to today.. when I dug out an old-ish opei rom and that installed, just as if it had been waiting for me.POn;y probem I have now id the background pic looks like something from a figure skateing test book, AND I am having problems installing some of my TKC ( for 760 mind) programs to install... Now I ugess I just go dig out some opie ops for multimedia ( oggs included ) as well as a video player.. and no doubt I'll be able to dig up lots and lots of games for it...

So , don't despair, sooner or later you will find a way to get a rom installed... Just keep trying different ones
Foxdie
QUOTE
So , don't despair, sooner or later you will find a way to get a rom installed... Just keep trying different ones


It's not as simple as flashing a ROM, I can't even get up the ROM flash menu. From what I can gather my C760 is unable to format the NAND Flash but I haven't confirmed this as I don't have a serial lead yet. Offroadgeek is sorting me out along those lines smile.gif

Do you know what's scary? I'm actually slowly forgetting what it's like to use a Zaurus :cry:
Foxdie
Okay here's a status update. I just got a serial cable today from expansys (thanks michael!) and here is what happens when I try to enter the Service menu D+M:
QUOTE
NAND LOADER ... in NOR                      
built on May 12 2003 at 10:45:38                                
func= 00000003              

(3) BOOT: Service Diag                      
nand_logical_read_block() - empty log_no (00000012)                                                    
ParamCheckDiagImage() - Error? cannot read PARAM_BLOCK_VERSION                                                            


At this point I selected a NAND Flash Restore again, that went normally until I got to the Format Error screen, but no diagnostic output to the serial port. Then I tried the C+D low level recovery and this is what the serial diagnostic spewed out:

QUOTE
NAND LOADER ... in NOR                      
built on May 12 2003 at 10:45:38                                
func= 00000004              

(4) UPDATE: Update NAND from NOR                                

SD/CF UPDATER              
update to NAND Flash.                      
!! cf_in !!            
initDevice is ok !!.                      

into GetFile();                
Out of GetFile() .                    

file count = 00000008
MAINTE  .BIN  addr=00000000  size=00050000  prgid=00000000
VERSION .BIN  addr=00054000  size=00004000  prgid=00000000
PARAMINF.BIN  addr=00060000  size=0000c000  prgid=00000000
MVERSION.BIN  addr=00070000  size=00004000  prgid=00000000
DIAG    .BIN  addr=0007c000  size=00060000  prgid=00000000
KERNEL2 .BIN  addr=000e0000  size=0013c000  prgid=00000000
KERNEL1 .BIN  addr=00220000  size=0013c000  prgid=00000000
ROFLSYS .BIN  addr=00360000  size=00340000  prgid=00000000

NAND device: SAMSUNG K9K1G08U0M
    size: 08000000
nand_logical_read_block() - empty log_no (00000012)
No PARAM_BLOCK_VERSION! make it!

MAINTE  .BIN
into OpenFile();
Out of OpenFile() .
Lnand_logical_write_block() - no unused block
Write error Stop Here
Error : update image error !
ERROR!


It's my guess that the NAND Flash has no partition information written whatsoever. Anyone know how to fix this? Anyone know if it's safe to do a NAND Flash Format and then be able to recover?
Ashley
Hi Foxdie!

The log shows there is an error flashing Version parameter. But if you look at http://www.h5.dion.ne.jp/~rimemoon/zaurus/...pic/nandmap.jpg you'll realize that updater.pro is trying to put it in the wrong place!!!

Maybe in c700s, as updater.pro says it was tested, Version is at 0x54000, but the fact is that on 750/760 it is at 0x48000.

I don't know if this is the only problem you have, but it looks definitely to be one.

You should edit updater.pro, correct this and try again.

Luck!! :wink:

Ash
Foxdie
Quick post: I edited the file and the output remains identical (except for the address listed when it cat's updater.pro). I'll try editing updater.pro completely tomorrow.
Ashley
Foxdie, have you tried to completely remove VERSION.BIN line from updater.pro? I think it isn't an important thing to reflash, as a matter of fact the file contains only 0xFF bytes. I'm presuming that if it is not referenced into updater.pro, the NOR restore won't try to flash it.
Foxdie
SCORE!

I managed to get it working again. What I did was I risked a NAND Flash Full Erase in the Zaurus Test menu in Extra menu in the Service Menu (so many menus!) and it started a slow upward count, when it got to 10 it gave an error which I didn't take note of I'm afraid. After I got that error I tried a NAND Flash Restore and it finally let me restore a NAND Backup biggrin.gif

Oh how I've missed it. I am bottling up my joy right now but I should really celebrate :mrgreen:
tapjpa
Welcome back to the land of the living Zaurii wink.gif
offroadgeek
you better be kind to your Zaurus from now on.... no playing around in the service menus anymore!

glad to hear that you finally have it working again.
zbones
Nice one, and welcome back!

To other people who may read this, only attempt this if you have tried the other options (reflashing etc) without success.

Peter
vishnja
This is great news Foxdie!
Foxdie
Thankyou to all who helped me fix my Z, I'd like to particularly thank offroadgeek and markb who went out of their way to help me (markb lent me his 5000D cradle and offroadgeek gave me a 256MB CF card and a SerialIO cable).

Because this issue is now closed I have renamed the post to what you see now and I'm locking the thread. If you have the same problem as me follow these steps but if they still fail and you've read every other post on Zaurus bricking then start a new post and people will try and help. Good luck and take care of your Z's.
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