Installing pdaXrom through 1.1.0beta3
This guide discusses how to install pdaXrom 1.1.0beta1 on a Sharp Zaurus SL-C1000. It should be applicable for other versions of the software, and work on other most other Zaurii, except for the 5x00 models (scroll to the #See Also section), and the SL-C3000 model, for which pdaXrom is not yet available.
This document is based on the installation of pdaXrom page, but is more detailed and aimed at the novice user.
Installing pdaXrom on your Zaurus will wipe out everything that is there already. If you care about it, back it up now!
A Note on Flashing
"Hardware" is a physical device, and "software" is a program that runs on such a device. "Firmware" is software that is in stored in the hardware. It is often in ROM -- Read Only Memory. It would include boot-up instructions, for example, and possibly even an operating system.
On the Zaurus, the firmware is "flash upgradeable," which means that if a newer version of the firmware comes out, a special process can be invoked where new firmware is written to the "Read Only Memory," and replaces the old firmware. Flash memory can often be written to tens of thousands of times, but there is a possibility that it can wear out, and if you aren't careful (and the power is interrupted, for example), the process might be stopped part way, and there might not be a coherent set of instructions to start up your machine!
pdaXrom, and the other ROM images or distributions for the Zaurus, are, in effect, firmware upgrades made by the community.
I was really scared when I first flashed my Zaurus. Was it risky? What would happen? I'm not really risking a thousand dollar investment, am I? I have since flashed my Z a handful of times, and have not had a problem (which is not to say I wasn't worried a couple of times.) That's why I've written this guide -- so that you know what to expect.
Before You Begin
To perform the installation, you will need:
- a FAT formatted SD/MMC or CF card - you need about 50 MB free.
- a way to write downloaded files to the card
- your Zaurus' power cable
- the ability to remove your Zaurus' battery
and of course:
- a Sharp Zaurus
- an internet connection
Download The Desired Version
Go to the pdaXrom download page. At the time of writing, the current stable version of pdaXrom is 1.1.0beta1. Find your Zaurus model in the list, and download the installation file. Last recomended STABLE version is 1.1.0beta1 (for C7x0-860,5000D-5500,SL6000) and 1.1.0beta3 (for Cxx00). For my C1000, I am downloading the kathrin-1.1.0beta3-akita.zip file.
Copy Files To Your Card
Unzip the file you downloaded. It contains 3 files: initrd.bin, tools.tar, and updater.sh. Copy these files into the root directory or your SD/MMC or CF card. Note that your card must be FAT formatted, or Sharp's flashing utility will not be able to find the files and update the operating system. Fortunately, if you have never formatted your card, it is almost certainly in FAT format. When you have copied the files over, put your card in your Zaurus.
From Powerup to pdaXrom Installer
You'll have to do these steps two, or perhaps three times.
The process of running the installer starts at bootup. While the Zaurus boots itself up, you hold down the "OK" button to get to the service menu. The official instructions recommend that you unplug your Zaurus, and remove the battery for five seconds, before re-inserting the battery, plugging the Zaurus back in, and turning the power on again. This ensures that the machine was turned off and is now booting up properly.
However, I don't believe you actually need to do that. If you just reboot your system, you should be fine. Some ROMs have a reboot option on the menu. If not, you can go to a console and enter this command: shutdown -r now. You can also start holding down "OK" before the Z turns off, so that you don't miss the boot-up sequence. [If you do miss it, just reboot again, or take out the battery.]
If you have problems with the rebooting method, removing the battery is foolproof.
You'll want to choose option 4, Flash/Update.
Pressing OK will take you back to the previous screen. Make sure you plug your Z in before continuing.
Warning: Flashing will erase everything on your Zaurus. Make sure you've backed up first and you know what you're doing. Are you certain you want to do this?
If you are certain, press "Y" to continue.
The pdaXrom Installer Main Menu
The screen goes blank. Then you see a Sharp logo in red, and then the installer comes up.
pdaXrom Installer (SL-C1000 123904/0) Choose what do you like: 1. Install new ROM. 2. Upgrade previous pdaXrom (>=1.1.0) 3. NAND Flash Utils 4. Run console shell 5. pdaXrom general disclaimer 6. Reboot < OK > < Cancel >
Partition the Internal Flash Memory
If you have not run the installation process #From Powerup to pdaXrom Installer), do so now. You should now be at the pdaXrom installer's main menu.
Select 3. NAND Flash Utils.
A submenu comes up:
NAND Flash utils Menu: 1. Resize root partition 2. Format user partition 3. Fix loader 64MB limit (for SL-C760/C860/C1000/C3100) 4. Back to main menu < OK > < Cancel >
You need to decide how large you want the root partition to be. If you are using an SL-C700/750, the official instructions recommend a 30 MB partition. Skip to #Resize Your Root Partition.
If you are using a SL-C760/C860/C1000/C3100, the official instructions recommend a 50 MB partition. If you want it up to 57 MB, then skip to #Resize Your Root Partition.
Enlarging the flash partition
However, if you have a SL-C760/C860/C1000/C3100 and want a larger partition (which will let you install more software, and most pdaXrom users recommend doing this):
Choose 3. Fix loader 64MB limit (for SL-C760/C860/C1000/C3100). After a little bit of processing, you'll get a message saying:
pdaXrom installer Sharp loader patches, max size for root partition now is 121MB. You will need to run installer after rebooting. Press the [ENTER] for reboot. < OK >
The system then starts rebooting. Get ready to hold down the "OK" button, and work your way back through the service menus (following the #From Powerup to pdaXrom Installer instructions), and from the installer's main menu, choose 3, to go to the Nand flash utils menu again.
Resize Your Root Partition
Now you are ready to resize your root partition.
Choose option 1. Resize root partition
You will see a dialog like:
pdaXrom installer Enter new root partition size in MB (58 is recommending, 121 is maximal):
The numbers it displays may be different. Enter the number you decided in the last couple of steps.
After a moment, you'll get a message saying:
pdaXrom installer Repartition finished. you will need reflash your ROM after rebooting. Press the [ENTER] for reboot.
The system will then reboot. Get ready with that "OK" button, and follow the #From Powerup to pdaXrom Installer instructions to get back to the pdaXrom installer's main menu.
This time choose 1. Install new ROM.
The installer will then proceed to flash the memory. You'll see several screens and progress bars. When it is done, it will return to the installer's main menu.
Choose 6. Reboot, and don't hold down "OK" this time.
It will now boot up into pdaXrom!
Booting into pdaXrom
Finally, it will say,
pdaXrom 1.1.0beta1 "Kathrin" zaurus login:
Type in "root" at the flashing cursor.
You will get a # mark. Type in "startx"
You will then be asked to calibrate the touch screen. The instructions are straightforward.
Welcome to pdaXrom!
- Official instructions for installing pdaXrom
- How to install pdaXrom on 6000L rc10 kathrin on Zaurus SL-6000L
- Pdaxrom On Sl-5500 For Dummies, How I *FINALLY* got it working.
- pdaXrom install for C3000
Back to the pdaXrom main page.