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Old 06-20-2012, 12:38 PM   #1
socaldude
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Kindle - Demo Unit ONLY

I have a friend who got a large quantity of Kindle and Kindle Fire units. On almost all of them it has the words: Demo Unit Only - Not for Sale

I am looking to purchase a Kindle for me and Kindle Fire for my wife. If I purchase one of these unit can I use them like I could a unit w/o the "Demo" part on it or must I get one w/o the "Demo" part on it to use it?

I am sorry if this has been asked before - if it has a link to the answer will suffice. Thanks to all for any help you may be on this issue.
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:39 PM   #2
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The Demo units are a pain in the wazu to reset so you can use them.

Do yourself a favor and just buy a new or refurbished Kindle. They are not that expensive, you get the warranty, and you don't have to worry about getting the unit to actually work.
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:40 PM   #3
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There is someone else on MR who obtained a demo Kindle DX and he's trying to get it flashed out of demo and it's a rather big deal to even attempt this.

And if your friend actually paid for these demo units, he got taken for a ride.
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:50 PM   #4
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There is someone else on MR who obtained a demo Kindle DX and he's trying to get it flashed out of demo and it's a rather big deal to even attempt this.

And if your friend actually paid for these demo units, he got taken for a ride.
He got them as part of a liquidation sale and is trying to sell them to recoup what he paid for these and other non-Kindle units. Sounds like a ton of work per unit to get them out of the mode they are in to a "usable" one, right?
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:52 PM   #5
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There is work involved. You can see the other topics on this right now, there are two. One for a K3 and one for a DX unit. Neither person seems to be having much luck.
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Old 06-20-2012, 01:35 PM   #6
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Thanks for all the great replies and help. Sound advice and I will follow along all of it and look elsewhere and let my friend know trying to sell these as good/working units isn't something he should be doing - although deep down I sense he knew it but was just trying to make a fast buck.
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Old 06-20-2012, 03:31 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by socaldude View Post
Thanks for all the great replies and help. Sound advice and I will follow along all of it and look elsewhere and let my friend know trying to sell these as good/working units isn't something he should be doing - although deep down I sense he knew it but was just trying to make a fast buck.
One other thing that might be an issue. Even if these units could be taken out of demo mode, there is no guarantee that you will be able to register them with Amazon.
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Old 06-20-2012, 09:02 PM   #8
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The Kindle Fires would be fine. The most you would have to do is flash a recovery, and then flash the latest Kindle update to them which automatically removes the recovery. However, if they are demos, they might not have actual serials. In that case, flashing CyanogenMod would be a great alternative as it makes the KF a full fledge Android tablet which then pretty much runs anything you throw at it that doesn't need a camera or microphone.
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Old 07-30-2012, 08:28 PM   #9
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The good news is that original full firmware images work on eink kindle demo units.

There is now a success report using the "simple debricking" method to reflash a K5 (touch) demo model with "standard" firmware, restoring full function to it.

That should work on any eink kindle model. At this time, simple debricking (flashing firmware images with USB) only works on K3/K4/K5, so the DX needs to use the old serial port method at this time.
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Old 08-01-2012, 07:09 AM   #10
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Where you found this info, geekmaster?
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Old 08-01-2012, 08:08 AM   #11
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Where you found this info, geekmaster?
Kindle Developer's Corner forum, "Simple Debricking" sticky thread. For "demo kindle" details, see the link (with "demo" in the description) near the bottom of the "Success Reports" in the first post.
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Old 08-01-2012, 11:05 AM   #12
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Where you found this info, geekmaster?
geekmaster pretty much invented this method, so he knows it inside and out
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Old 08-01-2012, 11:43 AM   #13
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geekmaster pretty much invented this method, so he knows it inside and out
Actually, I gave credit to yifanlu for the original push in the right direction (as can be seen in gray at the bottom of the first "simple debricking" post). After all, it was his "slip of the finger" that discovered the "magic key" for USB Downloader mode on the K4, and how to boot a custom u-boot from USB using that special mode. Together, we worked out how to use it to get my SEVERELY bricked K4 (with internal serial port pads ripped loose from the circuit board) working again during an IRC session spread out over a week. If not for my bricked K4 with a dead serial port, this method may not have become available to all those who used it successfully, and a lot of dead kindles would still be sitting in drawers and closets around the world. So my bricked and damaged K4 should also share credit for this "simple debricking" method.

Of course, it took a HUGE effort on the part of myself and others to gather all the tools together and grow it, organize it, simplify it, and document it for use by beginners. As measured by download counts of tools and forensic images, the "success reports" list is only about ONE PERCENT of all those who appear to have used this method.

The "simple debricking" method is also being used almost as a "routine step" in the development process by some developers now, and it is also being used to "downgrade" to previous firmware versions, and to install firmware that already has jailbreak and popular hacks pre-installed (and now, to remove "demo mode" from demo kindles too).

And this "simple debricking" method will get even simpler and more powerful when yifanlu completes his "one-click" project that will integrate these protocols, tools and steps into a single easy-to-use program that can be used for much more than "simple debricking".

And now hawhill has extended this "simple debricking" method to work on the K3 too, using the ATK (Advanced ToolKit) to replace "MfgTool" and "fastboot", and he is also working on a simple easy-to-use custom program to replace ATK.

We can look forward to more powerful and simpler tools and methods in the future. Thanks guys!

Last edited by geekmaster; 08-21-2012 at 12:08 AM.
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Old 08-01-2012, 12:32 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geekmaster View Post
The good news is that original full firmware images work on eink kindle demo units.

There is now a success report using the "simple debricking" method to reflash a K5 (touch) demo model with "standard" firmware, restoring full function to it.

That should work on any eink kindle model. At this time, simple debricking (flashing firmware images with USB) only works on K3/K4/K5, so the DX needs to use the old serial port method at this time.
The issue I have with this is that the purchaser of a demo Kindle does not have a licence to use the "normal" firmware, and hence this very likely constitutes copyright infringement. But that is of course not a technical matter, but a matter for the conscience of the owner of the Kindle.
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:39 AM   #15
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The issue I have with this is that the purchaser of a demo Kindle does not have a licence to use the "normal" firmware, and hence this very likely constitutes copyright infringement. But that is of course not a technical matter, but a matter for the conscience of the owner of the Kindle.
If amazon wanted to, they could disallow registering demo kindles the same way they do "lost or stolen" kindles. It is not infringement if you copy your firmware image from another kindle that you own, for your own personal use. Reselling that modified kindle is another matter altogether.

If a demo kindle contains INTENTIONALLY broken firmware, is it immoral to repair it yourself by replacing the "broken" parts? How about when those parts were salvaged from other broken stuff that we own (such as firmware and/or serial number, in this case)?

I think the real moral (and perhaps legal) problem lies in doing this for resale, but not for personal use. A bigger moral problem is selling it without telling the purchaser that it WAS a demo kindle, because amazon COULD disable it later based on its serial number.

I am curious WHY there are a bunch of demo kindles that recently entered the resale market...

Last edited by geekmaster; 08-02-2012 at 08:48 AM.
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