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Why don't we try to write our own firmware??
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fjrg76

Mexico
PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 12:59 am   Post subject: Question Why don't we try to write our own firmware?? Back to top 

Hi

Looking for mp4 firmware upgrades i've founded that there are always problems with them. I'm new in this forum and i don't know yet whether there is already a proposal to write our own firmware. Altough it seems a heavy task, when sharing it with hundreds of programmers it becomes an easy duty. In the web there are schematics and datasheets of the circuits used in the mp4 gadgets.

I'm electronic engineer and i have experience programming 8 bit microcontrollers and dsp's (there is a Z80 inside an mp4 "atj2085"). I'm shure there are a lot of brillant people here, so the question has been opened =)

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_Odyssey
MPx-a-lolics Anonymous
MPx-a-lolics Anonymous

Australia AU Queensland
PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 1:47 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

In the long run it would be a futile effort. There are so many different players, so many different firmware types and versions for too many chips and boards. You would have to write literally hundreds if not thousands of different firmware types for players that are constantly changing in specs. Something i wouldn't want to do.

If someone bricks thier player due to flashing incorrect firmware, thats thier fault. Why waste time writing firmware that only going to be compatible in a handful of players at any given time?

_________________
Queensland - The Triangular State


It is the beginning of wisdom to be able to say *I dont know!*
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polaris

Lithuania European Union
PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 7:41 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

There's swan project which aims to deliver open source super customizable firmware: http://wiki.s1mp3.org/index.php/Swan_Project
But there's not much progress. You can read mailing lists if you are interested: http://lists.s1mp3.org/pipermail/s1mp3-dev/

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fjrg76

Mexico
PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 4:32 pm   Post subject:   Back to top 

Actually all the players i've seen 'til now are based in the ATJ20xx mpu, including those that only plays mp3 (usb dongle). That means that having written the core code it is only a matter of modifying certains lines in the code (and then compile it) to made it available for other models (hw core doesn't change drastically). Think about this: although there are dozens of brands that manufacturer handhelds (eg PALM) all of them are using the PalmOs operating system, so if you are gonna compile for one brand then you do something like this

#include ".\os\clie.h"

but for another brand you use this instead:

#include ".\os\palmspring.h"

and so on.

That is, no matter which brand you are using, all of them are based in the same mpu, an ARM 32 bit. With this gadgets is the same, all of them has inside some member of the ATJ20xx family. Even we may standarized some firmaware and track them in any moment.

Whar do you guys think?? =)

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Sersoft
I love my MPx player
I love my MPx player

Canada CA Quebec
PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 5:40 pm   Post subject:   Back to top 

I think you should think about joining the s1mp3.org team they are already doing it

_________________
BEST MP4 I''VE EVER SEEN:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RwFeiNXjFhE
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fjrg76

Mexico
PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 11:50 am   Post subject:  Re: Why don't we try to write our own firmware?? Back to top 

Hi

Thanks for your interest in the topic. I'm embedded system programmer, which means I have the skills and knowledge for programming this kind of stuff, although, however, we need to set up several things before we can start. Among other things i'm writting an open-platform real time kernel that we may use.

As i've read so far there is a Z80 mpu inside the ATJ20xx, but there is also a DSP (i programm dsp as well). The first thing we must do is to get the tools for compiling and downloading programms into the atj. Once done we'll be on the road to do anything we want. I guess there are C free compilers for the Z80, and the JTAG interface is not hard to build a home-made one. There are free tools to download the image to the mp4, so it's just a matter of getting all this stuff together to start with.

As far as i read in s1mp3.org there is not such a project =( (they want to make reverse engineering)

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sunburstX

Netherlands
PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 1:25 pm   Post subject:  Re: Why don't we try to write our own firmware?? Back to top 

This may help, information about the Z80 CPU:
http://www.zophar.net/tech/files/z80_faq.html

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Kivin
I love my MPx player
I love my MPx player

Ukraine
PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 5:12 pm   Post subject:  Re: Why don't we try to write our own firmware?? Back to top 


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Sersoft
I love my MPx player
I love my MPx player

Canada CA Quebec
PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 10:26 pm   Post subject:   Back to top 

I have absolutely no knowlege about programming, but I can be of help by testing your firmware with my MP4 player, it's a 220x176 pixels 1GB atj2093 with 3.6v battery... good luck with your project, I can also do stuff for the interface (in photoshop/paint), I doubt it will be very original though...

_________________
BEST MP4 I''VE EVER SEEN:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RwFeiNXjFhE
----------------------------------------------------------------
(c) Sersoft.corp All rights Hacked...
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Kivin
I love my MPx player
I love my MPx player

Ukraine
PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2007 1:48 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

Testing new firmware will be very dangerous for the first time.
So I purpose to post your contacts down here if you would like to test new programs for your player.
Testing firmware will be not so soon as you think.
Write down information about your player (screen size, memory, resolution), information about your PC (Operating system - Windows, Linux etc.) & contact information (Use some bug - for example mail adress Mail%mail.ua to prevent a spam)

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d12nv
Keen on MPx players
Keen on MPx players

Australia AU New South Wales
PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2007 1:56 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

OK for the SLOOOOWWW ones in this forum... Can you translate this into "everyday language".. I did not understand a word u guys said... LOOOL!! =) (no offense)

p.s. i will be happy to test it out, once i know what u guys r doing...

_________________
ChiPod nano (2Gen) - 2000 Songs, impossibly real-looking!
...i love my iPod nano Clone 4GB!!


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Kivin
I love my MPx player
I love my MPx player

Ukraine
PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2007 5:36 am   Post subject:  Re: Why don't we try to write our own firmware?? Back to top 

2 d12nv:
We are try to began develop an open source firmware for different players. Also we want to develop usefull tools for player & test them with help of forum users like on http://forum.easydigi.com/ or s1mp3project.

So if anyone have an interest idea, usefull skills or would like to help or test new programms - post down.

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fjrg76

Mexico
PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2007 6:32 pm   Post subject:  Re: Why don't we try to write our own firmware?? Back to top 

Thanks for everyone that is interested in this new adventure. Not only do we need programmers but also people that help in doing some important stuff, like testers, art, fresh ideas, source code sustainers (eg. upload in sourceforge), managing a groups (like yahoo groups or google groups), webmasters, reverse engineering (eg. getting the electrical schematic directly from a mp4 palyer), moral support, etc, and globally speaking anything that can be helpful for the project.

A little effort multiplied 1000 times becomes a big one =)

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Sersoft
I love my MPx player
I love my MPx player

Canada CA Quebec
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 8:43 pm   Post subject:  Re: Why don't we try to write our own firmware?? Back to top 

I can be tester and don't worry I have a full backed up firmware (I recovered my player from ADFU mode) so if it fu*ks up I can bring it back...

also I'm from Ukraine so you won't have to break your brain trying to speak english if you'r not so good at it... I also speak french and russian.

_________________
BEST MP4 I''VE EVER SEEN:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RwFeiNXjFhE
----------------------------------------------------------------
(c) Sersoft.corp All rights Hacked...
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fjrg76

Mexico
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 9:51 pm   Post subject:   Back to top 

Thanks for you suport Sersoft, however i speak neither french nor russian, so i'll still breaking my brain writting in english =) (i speak spanish). Anyway it's better for the project to keep writting in english so many people can join us without the language wall.

I've doing my duty, and i haven't found yet a free z80 C compiler, but in the middle term i've been thinking in the arquitecture as a whole, so i already have a clearer picture of the project with the dificulties we must solved.

Some things we need for starting with:
1. ATJ20xx documentation
2. Z80 free C compiler
3. Schematics for common mp4 players
4. Maybe start a group (yahoo, google, here if possible, etc) to continue with this idea

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