This is it. webOS 2.1 on *your* Pixi Plus GSM

Ok. Some things first.

This is Unsupported, I won’t help you if this bricks your Pixi, although you can use a command to restore it so you can use your original webOS Doctor to recover it. I won’t help you to put it in your Pixi, and no one else will help you, not here or on the forums. YOU MUST KNOW YOUR DEVICE TO SOME EXTENT. YOU MUST KNOW AT LEAST SOME TYPE OF UNIX/UNIX LIKE COMMAND LINE STUFF AND WHAT A MAKEFILE IS.

The files are NOT mine, they’re from some Vietnamese guy who had 2.1 on his ebay-bought Pixi Plus GSM. I got dragged onto this by this guy trying to backup his OS, and the community not helping. More info, on PreCentral.

I won’t give you an URL to download the file, you’ll have to look for it, it was uploaded to some accesible place. At any moment Palm may come, look and this post, and ask me to delete it, and I’ll gladly comply.  They may even go to the site that hosts the file and ask to delete it, and they’ll surely comply.

The file is called: e4014e63a755ac02a63478047ad21d7e.tgz , it was uploaded to a popular media fiery file host site.

The problems I found with this:

  • It’s slow, as I said in my previous post, you won’t stand it more than a week, but many people asked for it.
  • There are no custom kernels, and there won’t be any. There are no kernel sources and Palm won’t release them, so DON’T EVEN ASK.
  • I wasn’t able to receive SMS.  I could send, but not receive. That part IS BROKEN, AND NO ONE WILL FIX IT.This WILL work properly if you update your modem firmware. The instructions are below.
  • This webOS version was on a GSM Pixi. I recently got a CDMA Pre and I noticed that when it first starts after a data erase, it tries to “Activate” the phone. I don’t know if this your CDMA Pixi will try to “Activate” itself upon installation. I don’t have a CDMA Pixi. If you want me to test, I need a CDMA Pixi with a working telephony account in Mexico and the data needed to doctor it (MSL I think).
  • You won’t be able to download 2.x apps from the App Catalog, ever. And when you login to your Palm Profile you will get a 9.9.9 profile version.  You may change the /etc/palm-build-info file with a 1.4.5 one (leave the first line intact, the one that says HP webOS 2.1) and relogin to your Profile, this way you will have 1.4.5 version on your profile, and Preware and friends will report your device version as 2.1.

An Update: RagingMind@FreeNode pointed me to the modem firmware, it’s there, inside the filesystem. And I found the reason of the display problems, so, it should be fine if you get the latest files.
Another Update: There are reports of working CDMA installations by installing, enabling developer mode (##DEVMODE#), then going to Device Info and doing a Full Erase. This worked at least for one Verizon user in PreCentral

Now, the instructions.

I did a little script that wipes everything from your Pixi. I mean everything, except the nvram partition, then repartitions your Pixi to the correct values, creates the needed filesystems, mounts everything in place, uncompresses the image, and reboots your Pixi.

Before you do anything else, PLEASE, BACKUP YOUR DATA. Use save/restore from Preware and then backup everything inside your USB partition.

You have three options to run this script:

  • Linux
  • MacOS
  • Cygwin

You need to have novacomd and novacom installed. They come with the webOS SDK that can be downloaded from developer.palm.com. If you don’t install this, you won’t be able to do anything.

You also need the program “make”

Download the revised and corrected make file to a directory on your computer and name it as “Makefile” (not Makefile.txt), put the e4014e63a755ac02a63478047ad21d7e.tgz file in the same directory.  Download the latest 1.4.5 AT&T Pixi webOS Doctor from here and place it in a “downloads” directory, in the same place as the previous 2 files.

You should also look for and download the file named “fixi.tgz” and place it in the same directory as the makefile to fix the display as well.

You should have the following structure:

DIRECTORY\e4014e63a755ac02a63478047ad21d7e.tgz
DIRECTORY\Makefile
DIRECTORY\fixi.tgz
DIRECTORY\downloads\webosdoctorp121ewwatt.jar

The usage is easy:

  • Put your Pixi in recovery mode (Pull the battery, pull usb cable, keep volume up pressed as you plug the cable, then put the battery and a big usb icon should show up).
  • Open a linux terminal/macOS terminal/cygwin bash shell
  • change yourself to the directory (cd DIRECTORY)
  • run the program with:  make install
  • Look at the cute jokes on the screen
  • Wait until it reboots automatically
  • Enjoy (or suffer, whichever you prefer)

If for some reason you want to go to another webOS version, you may Doctor with whichever version you like.

If you have a GSM Pixi, one last step is to update your firmware.
Put your device in recovery mode and type:
make reflash-modem

UPDATE YOUR MODEM ONLY IF YOU HAVE A GSM MODEM, IT WON’T WORK WITH A CDMA MODEM.

Now, if you don’t mind, I’ll return to try and make the Synergy Plugins designed by Greg Roll work again properly, and continue with my apps.

Ah, by the way, the “Official” PreCentral thread for this is here

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About nuttybunny

Long time Palm fan, the first time I saw the Pre on a video I loved it. Waited patiently until one carrier brought it to Mexico and I've been a webOS user since then, december 2010. As a php/html programmer I felt at home, although I've only developed and published one app. Right now my webOS work is focused on the Messaging Plugins, originally developed by Greg Roll, and making webOS 2.1 available for Pixis.
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73 Responses to This is it. webOS 2.1 on *your* Pixi Plus GSM

  1. Luis says:

    Thank you nutty, but why do you sound so angry?

    No te enojes jaja, es una lástima que te hayas sentido forzado… Muchas gracias y saludos.

    • nuttybunny says:

      Not angry at all, but I lost way too much time trying to do this in a more “right” way, and in the end I might get in trouble with Palm for this 🙂
      Well, people, test and play…

  2. zack jaghab says:

    I keep getting Error 2, can anyone help?

  3. pezman726 says:

    Made a post about my experience on precentral. installed, but i had a bunch of lines all over the screen. The plain wallpaper showed up, with the just type, but when i launched an app, or even looked at the carrier header part, everything got jankey. I attached pics. Just doctored back to 1.4.5

  4. Max Wright says:

    Thank so much. I will try and get this on my Palm Pixi Plus (Verizon), once I get home. I’m suprised that it’s done so soon. And, coincidentally, the day after my birthday. Have some time off. This was probably a nightmare.

  5. Max Wright says:

    Weird. I have everything setup as you said in the post, but every time I try “make install” in my terminal in the correct directory, it gives me an error of “make: *** No rule to make target `install’. Stop.” Does anyone know what is up? I am on Ubuntu 11.04, using the terminal.

  6. Pingback: » webOS 2.1 for Pixi Plus GSM 放出 锋客网Phonekr

  7. Pingback: » O2德版Pixi Plus刷2.1ROM失败,作者称修复中! 锋客网Phonekr

  8. Pingback: WebOS 2.1 su Palm Pixi plus

  9. vzsg says:

    I don’t know why you claim that 2.1 is unbearably slower than the official version was, I actually find it much smoother and more tolerable than even the UberKernel-enhanced 1.4.5 with the highest overclocking setting. Seriously, it’s like a new device.

    OTOH, one guy on the PreCentral forums mentioned that he cannot add his Google account. Me neither, and I’m getting this exception in /var/log/messages after pressing the Create button (after entering my credentials successfully):

    2011-05-25T05:44:23.096771Z [2213] palm-webos user.notice LunaSysMgr: {LunaSysMgrJS}: com.palm.app.email: **** create account failed: { "errorText": "palm://com.palm.keymanager/store {\"keyname\":\"++HZ3n8DHDt1regP\",\"keydata\":\"{\\\"common\\\":{\\\"password\\\":\\\"[SNIP]\\\",\\\"authToken\\\":\\\"[SNIP]\\\"}}\",\"type\":\"ASCIIBLOB\",\"nohide\":true}: library not initialized", "errorCode": -1, "exception": [the same stuff again]

    Do you have any idea what this means?

    • nuttybunny says:

      He was able to add his accounts after he did an “apps and data” erase (device info).
      I never had that problem, I used a new profile.

      • vzsg says:

        So did I, the phone rejected my earlier account. It claimed that it couldn’t restore my backup (no big deal IMO), and I had no other choice but creating another.

      • vzsg says:

        Doing a full erase fixed it for me too.

        Sidenote: it seems that the first use app cannot restore backups at all. I’ve disabled backup in my third Palm account, and I could reuse it instead of creating another.

  10. Ocean says:

    Hey buddy, it seems that something was wrong with my pixi plus in the process of installing webOS 2.1. I followed your instructions but finally achieved nothing. Details are as follows:
    xxx@ubuntu:~/pixi$ make install


    Actually, that process left no effects on my device. I can use it after reboot and all the partitions were remained.
    I can't solve it whatever in linux/windows. So i come and have a try.
    If i can get some help, that will be very kind of you.

  11. Ocean says:

    [destroy]Error 127
    [install]Error 2

  12. cmilette says:

    I’m sorry but could you go into more detail. I’m pretty much new at all of this and I could only get to the “make install” part. I can’t get any further :/
    running through OSX terminal.

    • nuttybunny says:

      I don’t use Mac OSX, why don’t you go to PreCentral and ask around? Maybe some of the other guys can help 🙂

      • vzsg says:

        The process works fine in OSX, if you put your device into USB recovery mode.
        I forgot it at the first few times, I was buffled why the make gets stuck 😛

  13. Sekino says:

    Thank you for all your hard work!!

  14. ATG says:

    Thanks for all your effort nuttybunny! 🙂

    I am now playing with by Pixi with the newly installed WebOS 2.1. I would say the UI is perfectly smooth and even smoother than the old 1.4.5.1, but, well, without the custom kernel the armv6 is a little bit too slow in any computing process…

    Anyway, we all know that the default setting of Pixi is slow and we should be able to tolerate it. As a faithful user of Pixi I have no regret for this update: it’s truly an upgrade!

    one more thing

    • nuttybunny says:

      I used Govnah to disable compcache and reduced the ondemandctl up threshold to 30%, it fells snappier but of course lags when opening 3 or more apps.

    • ATG says:

      Sorry for a double post, I think I have this post lost as I accidentally pressed the return key when submitting. Please use my next comment instead of this one, as the installation method of Chinese input is added. Thanks! 🙂

      BTW, on Govnah I am using the ‘performance’ setting, with ‘westwood’ and ‘anticipatory’, and I found that the phone is already very usable with this setting.

      The last thing, do a total wipe for phone after the installation can boost the speed a lot. Give it a try! 🙂

  15. ATG says:

    First of all, thanks for all your effort Nuttybunny, it means a lot to every Pixi users!

    Having playing with my Pixi with the newly installed WebOS 2.1 for a while, all I can say is that the UI is much smoother than 1.4.5 or the latter 1.4.5.1 update. Frankly speaking, without the overclocking-enabled custom kernels, the armv6 is running a bit slow especially on those processes related to computing, but, well, we all know the speed of a default Pixi or Pixi , and I have no complaint on that. Nuttybunny just offered us a real UPGRADE here! 🙂

    A few more things: 1. Please always use a clean, new Palm Profile; 2. Backup everything with Save/Restore App and pull it out from the USB drive mode; 3. If u got stuck at the HP logo, connect to the WOSQI and uninsta頡ll those apps newly installed; 4. For Chinese users, you dun need to install a font patch this time, the Chinese font here supports all the characters. PLEASE install ‘aiitype’ for Chinese input, get it from http://www.aiiwebos.com and, if you type 倉頡 usually, please follow the link here: http://www.garyau.com/en/webquickinstall-/233-aiitypewebos21-changjie.html. Though a bit difficult to do it on Internalz I still can manage to complete the task. 🙂

    Hope my review is a useful one for u!

  16. Krystl says:

    Thanks for this upgrade, but after few days I returned back to 1.4.5. As someone wrote, UI is smoother, but overall system is much slower than 1.4.5.
    There’s not many new features except vpn connection, that I don’t use. So I don’t see any advantages of this new system.

  17. Taylor says:

    how long should the process take after “make install” ?

  18. Hello…
    First of all, thank you for your hard work. I’m from germany and i’m sorry that my english is so bad.
    I would to install webOS 2.1 on my GSM Pixi Plus, and i have downloaded these 4 files.
    http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/151/ordneransicht.jpg/
    After this, I installed Cygwin and worked with the console:
    http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/29/konsoled.jpg/

    My Pixi was the whole time in the recovery mode and connected with the pc over the us-cable.
    Can you help me to find my mistake if you had a bit of time?
    Greetings from germany

    • nuttybunny says:

      Ah, you’re doing it wrong 🙂 The Makefile is not supposed to be executed, you run the command “make” and it uses the Makefile for the process.

      Try this:
      cd /cygdrive/y/webos_2.0_pixi/
      make install

      It’s right there on the post 🙂
      Remember to use also “make reflash-modem” when it finishes, you have to put it again in recovery mode to do it.

  19. it’s very crazy, I started setup.exe again and install cygwin again…and i search “make” and “unzip”, but it don’t will run ._. mhh…
    maybe i’m to stupid for this ;D i will try it again tomorrow and maybe I can think better tomorrow…
    thank you…

  20. Pingback: Anonymous

  21. oliver says:

    Can this be modified to work on a Verizon Pixi Plus?

  22. Ngocthai says:

    when i type ” make install ” it getting error:
    root@ubuntu:/home/ngocthai/2.1# make install
    THIS WILL WIPE EVERYTHING EXCEPT THE NVRAM PARTITION FROM YOURDEVICE AND TRY TO INSTALL 2.1 ON IT. IT MAY OR MAY NOT WORK.IF IT DOESN’T WORK YOU’RE INVITED TO USEmake uninstallAND THEN RESTORE USING WEBOS DOCTOR.
    make[1]: Entering directory `/home/ngocthai/2.1′
    make[1]: *** No rule to make target `downloads/webosdoctorp121ewwatt.jar’, needed by `build/unpacked-doctor’. Stop.
    make[1]: Leaving directory `/home/ngocthai/2.1′
    make: *** [install] Error 2
    .
    Tell me what wrong?

  23. Ngocthai says:

    i will download file and try again.

  24. Pingback: Web OS 2.1 for Pixi Plus

  25. cameron battle says:

    where do i get the .tgz file?

  26. cameron battle says:

    my device has been constantly rebooting for the past 5 minutes. why?

  27. cameron battle says:

    bad or error response from other side: ”
    make[1]: *** [restoreall] Error 1
    make: *** [install] Error 2
    i followed everything exactly.

  28. NiiCoTiiN3 says:

    Thank you, certainly It’s a bit slow but that’s nothing compared to the new features introduced by webOS 2.1. I’m going to make a tutorial shortly. Bye

  29. Pingback: WebOS 2.1 op de Palm Pixi - Palmclub: Forums - alles over de Palm Pre met webOS, de Palm Treo smartphone of PalmOS pda

  30. Rennat says:

    I got it work install on my Verizon Pixi Plus however, It gave me this:

    Installation Done. Rebooting
    bad or error response from other side: ”
    make[1]: *** [restoreall] Error 1
    make: *** [install] Error 2

  31. Rennat says:

    I cant! It won’t even get to the activation scene. I boot it and it shows the HP logo, then it has me select a country and then tries to set the language but it then shows me a scene telling em something is wrong with the phone.

  32. Nduati says:

    dude! this has sorted me right out! no loss of speed though – it’s working like a charm. still, i’d like to overclock the processor – do you foresee an issue with that?

  33. Pingback: Considering a Pixi - PreCentral Forums

  34. bad or error response from other side: ”
    make[1]: *** [restoreall] Error 1
    make: *** [install] Error 2

    Shows palm logo and reboots infinitely.

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