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Messages - Dr. Watson

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Hello all,

I had to remove my SIM from my Cosmo to put it into another phone.
I though I could boot the cosmo without SIM. Well, it asked for my regular unlock PIN, which it accepts, but since then it keeps asking for a Privacy Protection Password and shows the PIN Pad.
I've never set a Privacy Protection Password.
Reinserting my SIM card and booting/rebooting doesn't help.

After days of trying I just tried a factory reset through recovery.
After a very long reboot it asked me for my unlock PIN again and the Privacy Protection Password prompt reappears.

Any tipps, before I ask Planet?


Hello world!

I've had the sad experience that my cosmo only charges very slowly with an external powerbank.
Tried 4 of my powerbanks. All with my two only cables that seem to support MTK-PE.
Cosmo won't charge at more than 0.5-0.6A @ 5V.  Many times that is not enough to keep up with what the phone uses during Hiking when GPS is enabled and Osmand is running.

Only two of my many usb-c cables will allow fast charging (Pump Express) with 9V at all.
The following combinations of my collection do work:
LeEco Cable+Original Cosmo Communicator cable  and  LeEco wall charger (stating 3.8V-8V/12V) + Original Cosmo Communicator wall charger in all four combinations.

I've purchased a Xiaomi PLM13ZM 18 Watt power bank in despair, which was advertised as supporting Mediatek Pump Expess and QC with 5/9/12V.
No luck either with any cable. Charge current is about 0.5-0.6A at 5V.

Does anyone of my fellows here have any insight in how Mediatek Pump Express works?

One of my most pressing questions:  What would such a MTK-PE capable phone like the cosmo communicator do, if I were to FORCE 9V Output from the powerbank, e.g. via a QC trigger board ???????????

I had a surprising experience using my coworker's custom 2m MICRO-USB charge cable with a USB-C adapter tip: It charged at about 8.6V
All my cables with my various USB-C adapter tips didn't work.  I'm totally baffled.
Would anyone please post details of their USB-C cable, if their cable supports Pump Express and is not the original cable?
It would be great bonus, if you even knew a source where to purchase that cable ....

Stay safe everyone! Take things serious! I've had more than enough coworkers and family affected.


Cosmo Communicator - Android / Odd Behavior Thread
« on: December 19, 2019, 11:41:30 am »
Hello all.

I neglected to install the update for the Cover Display after installing the OTA Update for Android.
After flashing the latest CODI firmware  via the Cover Display assistant the battery issues are gone.

Flashing was not an easy task, though. I got repeated failures and only after resetting, stopping and restarting it finally worked. Apart from that it seems to have flashed twice. Once very slowly over many minutes and the second task within minutes.
Whatever. At least the battery issues are gone.


Cosmo Communicator - Android / Odd Behavior Thread
« on: December 18, 2019, 04:47:20 am »

unfortunately I must confirm the battery life / power management issues.
In my case they appeared after the first firmware update.
Before the update I only had issues with
1) searching contacts produces too few or no results
2) finger print sensor totally unreliable, even with multiple fingers registered
3) display sometimes locks during use

The top of the device / cover display always feels warm and battery drains about 10% every hour.

Also the Battery saver button in the extended top menu (whats the professional term for this menu in Android?)  is no longer functional.

Battery usage details per application  no longer work.

Complete reset of the device seems to solve the issue for a few minutes .... after that the Battery Saver icon remains gray and the troubles start all over.

Anyone know how to downgrade? :-)


Quote from: NormMonkey
Just discovered another odd behaviour.

My built-in Battery Monitor doesn't give app details (I have yet to try a dalvik cache wipe, since I haven't rooted yet and don't know the invocation for recovery mode if there is one)
so I installed the GSam battery monitor.

I have noticed that every once in awhile the front of the device gets really warm.  

GSam says that "Phone Services" is the culprit.  It keeps waking up for "*telephony-radio*"

I have also noticed that the device NEVER goes into deep sleep or whatever the low-idle state is.

Finally, I noticed that sometimes the Samsung Health app takes a lot of battery.  Other times it is quiet.  This doesn't seem to correspond to activity - at first I thought it might eat more when I'm walking but I have seen it do this when I'm just sitting on the couch too.

Does anyone have any thoughts about what's up with Phone Services?  Anyone seen similar behaviour?

Even weirder: I have a Roku TV and there is a Roku app.  Whenever I run it and then close the phone leaving it in the foreground / last thing that was on the screen, the phone gets warm.  So, I figured that GSam would say it is Roku using power, right?  

Nope, it's Phone Services.  Weird.  Somehow leaving the Roku app open causes Phone Services to use much power.

Gemini PDA - Linux / PL2303 serial adapter drivers?
« on: July 13, 2018, 05:59:21 pm »
Quote from: mithrandir
It only replaces the kernel. Just make sure the other partitions are unchecked in the flash tool.

Hi J..... aaahhm mithrandir,

First of all: Thank you so much !!!!!!!!!!    

I simply dd-ed your kernel to /dev/block/disk/by-partlabel/linux_boot, was that wrong?

Download mithrandir's kernel, unzip and flash while on your Gemini:

root@gemini:/home/gemini# find /dev/block/ | grep linux

dd if=/root/kernel_from_mithrandir/linux_boot-gemini-3.18.41+.img  of=/dev/block/disk/by-partlabel/linux_boot

Download mithrandir's modules/firmware tgz and untar:

cd /
tar -xzf /root/modules_from_mithrandir/modules_firmware-gemini-3.18.41+.tar.gz

Reboot. Everything works just fine. (Have I been pwned now? ).

Unfortunately one of the first things I was missing in your modules is the usb gadget drivers.
To compile your kernel, did you use sources from ???
I want to try to copy your kernel's config and play around a little bit. I have no experience in kernel compilation, let alone cross compilation. Let's see how well I can brick my Gem.


Gemini PDA - Android / Device encryption not supported?
« on: June 27, 2018, 04:01:10 pm »

let me summarize what I believe to have understood.

First of all you must distinguish between the lock screen password/PIN/pattern and a boot/decryption  password/PIN/patttern.
The lock screen does not physically protect your data on the flash chips. Skilled attackers would still be able to extract data from your device.

The android image for the Gemini uses a default encryption key to encrypt the /data partition ( Am I correct ???).
As far as I have understood the password is either acquired from some specially implemented hardware feature.
If there is no such feature, then the default encryption password is simply "default_password".

Using adb you can verify if /data is encrypted :

[div class=\'codetop\']CODE[/div][div class=\'codemain\' style=\'height:200px;white-space:pre;overflow:auto\']adb shell getprop ro.crypto.state[/div]

I hope yours says it's encrypted.
However, this does not mean that a totally secret password is necessary to unlock the /data partition!!!
Because the actual key to unlock /data is still encrypted with the default password.

When you set a PIN/pattern and select the option "require pin to start device", the encryption key is encrypted with your own private password/pin/pattern and you can no longer start android without typing your password/PIN/pattern.
Android now depends on you to unlock the /data partition.
If your device restarts, you won't even receive phone calls until you enter your decryption secret. (Anyone verify that for me?)

A 4 digit pin can easily be cracked. Same for an easy unlock pattern. For better security you should choose a longer and more complex password.
But who wants to type a 10 character password to unlock his smartphone?

So how about implementing two different methods? A long password to unlock the phone storage and an unlock pattern to quickly unlock the phone screen during daily use ??????????? :-)

WARNING: Try at your own risk. Backup all data before tampering with device encryption.

First set up your desired unlock pattern/PIN choosing "require PIN/pattern to start the phone".
After this  change the actual encryption password on command line:

[div class=\'codetop\']CODE[/div][div class=\'codemain\' style=\'height:200px;white-space:pre;overflow:auto\']adb shell
Planet:/ $ whoami
Planet:/ $ su
Planet:/ # whoami
Planet:/ # vdc cryptfs verifypw MyPassword123                                          
200 9679 0
Planet:/ # vdc cryptfs verifypw WRONGPassword666
200 9680 1
Planet:/ #
Planet:/ # vdc cryptfs changepw MyNewPW
500 9979 Usage: cryptfs changepw default|password|pin|pattern [newpasswd]
244|Planet:/ # vdc cryptfs changepw password MyNewPW
200 9983 0

The vdc command required root permission, which is why we entered su to acquire root permissions.
The 1 at the end of the returned code means the previous command exited with an error.
The 0 return code after our last command means our encryption password was successfully changed.
Be careful when using special characters in your password!!  VERIFY YOU PASSWORD ONCE MORE AFTER SETTING IT AND BEFORE YOU REBOOT!!!  Maybe you would need to put difficult strings into quotes or whatever, but I haven't tried it yet and so I'm leaving this for some other person to figure out.

Some applications such as tasker etc. install services (accessibility services) to be able to bypass the lockscreen. In this case android may reset the encryption password back to the default password so that this service can work even without your secret password.
If your device is no longer asking for your password at boot the you know something is very wrong!
Please use these instructions at your own risk.
Could someone verify the above and let me know if I made any mistakes?
I'm using the rooted image on my gemini. Your mileage may vary.


Gemini PDA - Android / Gemini MassStorage App?
« on: June 17, 2018, 11:56:07 pm »
Quote from: gidds
Quote from: Dr. Watson
The only disadvantage is that the OS on the PC has to support MTP. But any sufficiently recent OS does ...

It does?  My Mac (with the current macOS) doesn't seem to…

I had to install Android File Transfer, but it's not very good: the window might look like a Finder window, but doesn't behave like one (sorts differently, can't see file info or move files within the drive &c).  Quite buggy, too: can't transfer files with characters like question marks, confuses ‘skip’ with ‘abort’, and freezes or crashes quite frequently.

I'm currently running sshd on the Gemini and scp on the Mac, to transfer files over wifi (which is more flexible as well as not requiring a cable) — but the Gemini sometimes can't preserve timestamps, which will cause problems.

What options might there be?

And a related question: although I've used the developer settings to tell the Gemini to connect in MTP mode, it always starts off with just USB charging, and I have to use the notification bar to switch.  Every time…  Am I doing something wrong?

Excuse my ignorance :-)    Who would ever suspect that Apple does not wish to support owners of Android phones .....

The timestamp problem might happen due to different time resolution of Linux and MAC file systems:

Gemini PDA - Android / Gemini MassStorage App?
« on: June 13, 2018, 07:03:30 am »
If you want to use the Gemini like a USB stick or a CD drive, I have just successfully tested DriveDroid which allows for that.
I was able to download an Ubuntu ISO, present it to the PC via DriveDroid as a virtual USB storage device and boot my PC into Ubuntu.
It's even much faster than using a CD drive.
Since I need to use different boot media regularly, I really appreciate that the Gemini supports DriveDroid. My previous phone didn't.
Saves me a lot of time creating USB boot sticks or burning DVDs from downloaded ISO images.
This is about as useful to me as a swiss army knife.

If your intention is to transfer files between the Gemini and a PC that doesn't speak MTP:
Two operating systems can normally not mount the same file system at the same time. It's like two people simultaneously writing on the same line on a piece of paper.
That means that previously the "sdcard" file system had to be unmounted on the Android side, terminating all apps that were accessing any files or folders at that point, so that the PC was able to cleanly mount the filesystem without corruption and interference. Android apps had to "wait" until the PC unmounted the sdcard before they could access the sdcard again.
This was a very unreliable and dissatisfying mechanism.
Apart from that Windows could only handle NTFS and FAT file systems. Both had limitations which made them unsuitable for the Android system. I won't even mention the licensing issues.

Current android uses a linux file system which is less prone to corruption, supports files>4G, stronger security and encryption.
MTP is the protocol that acts as an intermediary between the Android operating system/apps actively "working" on this linux file system and the PC wanting to read and write files.
Not a bad solution in my opinion. It minimizes conflicts, allows apps to keep doing what they are doing and reduces corruption to practically 0.
The only disadvantage is that the OS on the PC has to support MTP. But any sufficiently recent OS does ...

Other alternatives for transferring files:
-USB C SD adapter
-Install DroidSSH and copy files from Windows with WinSCP over WIFI. Or any sftp client.
-TotalCommander Wifi Plugin
-TotalCommander LAN Plugin to copy files from the Gemini to and from your PC over WIFI
-USB Tethering and DroidSSH + WinSCP
-Google Drive

Gemini PDA - General Discussion / Accessories?
« on: June 11, 2018, 12:33:58 am »
Hello folks,

well, I am also on the search for accessories.

I've ordered an airglass screen protector, and while the quality is very good, it's too "high" as others have already noted here and on Amazon. It stands away from the screen at the top of the screen and it even cracked (yes, it's really glass !!!) when the device snapped closed. I have contacted the manufacturer awaiting a reply. If there is not positive reply, I will try to return the article.

In the meantime this is my attempt at protecting my Gemini when on the move:
Not perfect. Fits  _tightly_ .  Too thick. But it already protected my Gemini from damage, when I dropped it due to the bulkiness of the case....
You could easily fit two Geminis in there, so lots of space for accessories or a slim wallet. Not necessarily room for the charger, but at least enough room for a charging cable and some adapters.


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Gemini PDA - General Discussion / Accessories?
« on: June 11, 2018, 12:18:39 am »
Quote from: Yev
The Gemini doesn't, but I got these from Amazon UK and they work fine.

Hello Yev,
how do your rubber feet affect the Geminis ability to stand on it's hinge?
Is it stable enough to keep using the touchscreen, or will the Gemini tilt over when tapping the touchscreen?
I'd have thought the hinge would need to be rubberized for it to stand stably.

Gemini PDA - German / Keyboard Deutsch - Tastenbelegung falsch?
« on: June 04, 2018, 10:20:30 am »

vielen Dank für den Tipp.

Es hat leider länger gedauert, bis ich darauf kam, dass die Änderungen an den Hardware-Tastatur-Einstellungen bei meinem Gemini erst nach einem Reboot übernommen wurden.

Jetzt bin ich auf der Suche nach einer wirklich passenden Schutzfolie / Glasfolie für den Bildschirm. Ich kann mir nicht vorstellen, dass der Bildschirm lange ohne Kratzer bleibt, wenn die Tasten darauf herumreiben.


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