[maemo-users] N900 stuck on 5 dots forever

From: Paul Hartman paul.hartman+maemo at gmail.com
Date: Fri Mar 4 08:58:36 EET 2011
2011/3/1 Hämäläinen Kimmo <kimmo.hamalainen at nokia.com>:
> On Mon, 2011-02-28 at 10:32 -0600, ext Paul Hartman wrote:
> ...
>> I know reflash of FIASCO image can most likely "fix" it by starting
>> over, but I'm curious if there is anyway to find out why it's not
>> progressing beyond the 5 dots. Is there a magic key to disable the 5
>> dots or some way to see what's going on during the boot process? Like
>> in a typical linux console during bootup. Maybe then, if I can see
>> what the problem is, I can boot MeeGo from MicroSD card and edit the
>> N900's rootfs and keep my customizations. :)
> You can get the serial console if you manage to get hold of a
> development "jig" --- a HW adapter that connects to the battery slot of
> the N900 and provides a serial connector.
> Another way would have been having some startup script that sets up the
> USB networking (e.g. load g_nokia kernel module and do "ifup usb0") in
> every boot --- if you'd have that, you could simply plug a USB cable and
> connect over ssh.

Here's a log of my attempt so far:

- Using the MeeGo rescue initrd I was able to make a dd image of my
eMMC partitions over USB

- Booting MeeGo from microSD card, in the terminal I was able to make
an image of /dev/mtd5

- On my PC, I am able to mount the rootfs ubi image by way of nandsim. Woohoo :)

- That's good news, because I now have a copy of everything from my
N900 so I have no real worries about losing any files or settings
anymore. Unfortunately, I can't see any obvious problems with any of
it that might be causing it to stall during boot.

- I made the recommended changes to start USB networking, disable the
fb-progress animation, etc.

- I created a new rootfs ubi image based on the one I have mounted
(and edited) on my PC, following instructions at:

- Flashed my modified rootfs to the n900 and now my N900 won't get
past the NOKIA logo screen. I guess I did something wrong, or used the
wrong version of ubifs tools? No idea.

- I restored my backup rootfs image with flasher. Now the device boots
normally again (meaning it's still stuck on infinite 5 dots

Now I think I've hit a dead-end.

If someone knows the trick to create a working rootfs ubifs that I can
flash back to my N900, I'll be happy to learn it.

Other ideas I have but with no idea how to do it:
Can I create rootfs on SD partition and boot from it somehow?
(modified kernel maybe?)
Can I mount the ubi rootfs in Nitdroid, MeeGo, Mer, etc booting from SD?

I'll try for 2 more days before I give up and flash the fiasco image.
I'm still curious to know why it's not booting, though. Sunday will be
1 week since it last worked, I miss using my precious Maemo... :)

Thanks for reading,
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