XDAndroid 2.2.1 Build FRX04

Hello again XDAndroid users!

We’ve got a minor release for you tonight. No, it’s not Gingerbread… We’re releasing XDAndroid 2.2.1 (Froyo) build FRX04, in the forms of both an updated system.ext2 image and an update.zip OTA update package.

List of changes since FRX03:

  • Improved 3D performance, with fixes for WVGA devices (brought to you by [acl]) – IMPORTANT: this requires the accompanying rootfs release from today, 21 Jan.
  • Synced all minor upstream changes from AOSP

There is also a new rootfs available today which provides an updated library that is part of the 3D change mentioned above. Without an updated rootfs, you will not see the 3D improvements.

Those of you who read the commit logs for the rootfs releases will notice quite a few mentions of gingerbread in there. The new rootfs allows future XDAndroid gingerbread builds to boot. However, we have not yet released a gingerbread system image. Gingerbread is getting closer to a testing prerelease, but isn’t quite there yet.

Thanks for using XDAndroid! As usual, feel free to report bugs and watch development on the IRC channel or mailing list!

Ongoing Gingerbread Progress

My previous Gingerbread-related post painted a grim picture of the progress I had been making up to that point. Little work had been done on stabilizing the system. Lots of features and hardware support were broken. In general, there was a ton of work to do.

Well, that work is getting done. Slowly, I’ve been working through the long list of issues and knocking out whatever I can in reasonably short time. We’re moving towards a completely unsupported prerelease system image meant for testing, probably within the next couple of weeks. Again, that would be completely unsupported and not an official release. We would not advertise it on any official release channels (wiki or forums).

With that out of the way, here’s a list of major fixes since my last post:

  • The severe drop in 2D performance has been fixed
  • The SD card is now visible within Android again
  • Screen backlight issues that I posted about are actually kernel-related auto-backlight issues on Raph/Diam/Blac only
  • Gingerbread’s strange sleep of death has been resolved
  • UPDATE: Audio is working
  • For developers: build system changes have been pushed to the repositories to allow you to build the system (gapps needs to be updated to generate working system images, though)

For users interested in following the technical development discussion, please join our IRC channel (and #htc-linux for kernel development) and the xdandroid-dev mailing list. The bulk of technical discussion occurs in these two places. Thanks!

XDAndroid Project Mailing List

Due to a request by developers, I’ve started building up mailing list infrastructure for the project. Initially, we will have just one list, xdandroid-dev, to be used exclusively for development discussion. This discussion will include chatter regarding bug fixes, new features, and other proposed changes. The xdandroid-dev mailing list will likely have small, experimental code changes posted (in the form of source patches) and will provide a live look at development, along with the IRC channel.

Technically-abled users are encouraged to join development discussion on this list. Posting to the list is limited to members only, however membership is open and users can register with no administrative approval. If you are interested in observing or joining development discussion, please subscribe to the list. The XDAndroid Project has a big shortage of Android developers and we’re looking for all the help we can get!

PS: There’s still no timetable for Gingerbread. Most of the issues outlined in my previous post on the subject are still valid.

Gingerbread (lack of) progress update

It’s been very slow around here lately. Being busy with work and holidays hurts productivity. However, I’m starting to get back into the groove.

Gingerbread is proving to be a beast to port. A lot has changed from Froyo and we’ll be left making square pegs fit in round holes. As usual, all old platforms have been abandoned, except for the venerable Nexus One of course. This makes it somewhat annoying to get all the older hardware working as it did in older versions.

Here’s an incomplete list of things which have broken in the upgrade to Gingerbread:

  • Severe drop in 2D graphics performance (a fix is in progress, pending testing and commit to our frameworks/base fork)
  • Existing sensors library is incompatible, so the accelerometer is not working
  • Location services crash the system during initialization (bootloop); additionally, removing Location provider causes Browser to crash at Google home page
  • Trying to activate bluetooth crashes the system
  • SD card is not visible (as mounted) in Android
  • Screen backlight stays on when it should sleep (display turns black)
  • Device hangs in sleep mode

There are other issues here and there that aren’t important or difficult enough to list here, or that I haven’t found yet. Also important to note is that I’ve been testing exclusively on a Raphael (ATT Fuze) so any issues with other platforms (Rhodium in particular) may not be found by me.

I’ll be working actively on these issues in the immediate future. Needless to say, the Gingerbread release is probably a long way off. There is a lot of work to be done, and unfortunately Gingerbread is mostly a solo effort by myself at the moment. If you’d like to help out, or if you know someone who can help, please drop by our IRC channel and join the development discussion. We need all the help we can get.