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Old 07-02-2013, 06:30 PM   #1
PeterT
Taking a break; Fed up
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Posts: 6,102
Karma: 38639832
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Toronto
Device: Wife: Touch, Arc, Vox Me: Nexus 7, Glo
List of Tweaks / Hacks / Mods

I'm going to try to maintain this post as a link to the current versions of the various hacks / tweaks / mods available for the Kobo family. I hope to keep the links in this first post current as development continues.

In any of the quotes I have included, clicking on the BLUE icon besides the author's name will take you their original posting. For instance
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterT View Post
I'm going to try to maintain this post as a link to the current versions of the various hacks / tweaks / mods available for the Kobo family. I hope to keep the links in this first post current as development continues.
will take you back to this post.

Direct Links to Kobo Touch Firmware
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=185660

Just be careful to select the correct firmware for your device.
Currently there are two distinct files for the Touch and beyond.

One download for the original two Touch models (N905 and N905B)
One download for the Aura / Glo / Mini / Touch Low Cost (N905C).

Even though it's the same build for Aura as the Glo and Mini, don't downgrade the Aura below the initial F/W release for it, which I believe was 2.5.1

Google Drive on Kobo Touch
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=205457
Current Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by spMatti View Post
Hi

I developed hack to synchronize Kobo Touch with Google Drive. It uses open source Linux client called grive (https://github.com/Grive/grive). When the eReader is online files are automatically synchronized. You can find download link and installation instructions from https://github.com/softapalvelin/kobo-grive-sync.

I wrote about it in http://blog.softapalvelin.com/2013/0...h-ereader.html if you want to read more.


KoboLauncher for standalone Qt apps
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=201632
Current Instriuctions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by sergeyvl12 View Post
Hi!

I've written a small launcher program for my Qt applications: pbchess, checkers, reversi (othello) and sokoban. All the programs work well with Kobo Touch, Glo and Mini.

Video
Download

Kobo Launcher applications

1. pbchess
2. checkers
3. reversi (othello)
4. sokoban
5. gomoku
6. notepad
7. calculator
----
8. CoolReader (in plans ...)

Kobo Launcher utilities

1. Power off
2. Usb network + dropbear ssh server + sftp

Installation:

http://wiki.vlasovsoft.net/doku.php?...touch_glo_mini

You can add another applications or remove existing ones to/from the KoboLauncher menu. Just edit KoboLauncher/KoboLauncher.ini.

Usb network

Instruction how to start usb network on Windows
Usbnet tips and troubleshooting

Additional info

Source code for KoboLauncher and Qt Kobo plugins
Useful info for Linux users

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...&postcount=157


Kobo Tweaks
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=206180
NOTE: CURRENTLY DOES NOT WORK WITH 2.6.1 F/W
Current Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by ah- View Post
Since I recently updated my Touch to 2.4.0 and missed my beloved adblocker, I fixed up Kobo Tweaks and got it running again. Many thanks to ikarus9999 for the updates for firmware 2.x, they were really helpful.

It's still a bit rough, but I think it's already useful and I'd rather release this now than letting it rot away on my harddrive again.

So, what's new?
  • Improved plugin loading. It should work with SD cards and in the future also load automatically. It actually already worked automatically and is already loaded on boot, but Kobo improved the home screen so you need to open something and go back to the homescreen before anything there is changed.
  • Nice GUI to setup everything. I actually had this sitting around for more than half a year, but now it's actually in there . Due to the new homescreen behavior you might have to reboot for now to see some changes. Also, the menu customization is yet to come.
  • Major code cleanup. This is probably not very visible to you but means that it's fun again to work on it .

I took the great idea of custom commands from the other plugin, but implemented it using QtScript, since that's already included with Qt. This means that the syntax slightly changed:

Note that you have to escape the " like this: \”. Oh, and the filename changed to kobotweaks.ini to avoid a name clash.

There's more to come as I find some more time to work on it. I'm especially thinking about some way to better integrate the weather display, chess, etc. applications with nickel. Maybe it's possible to start an external application and display just a white (or black) screen so it can use the display (but keep nickel running) until some signal is received that the application terminated.

Also, the Qt based applications should be able to integrate directly with nickel just as the settings do. Oh yeah, and about the settings, I have no idea how well they fit on the larger screens. I designed them before the Glo even existed.

Download: http://andreas.heider.io/kobo/tweaks-13-02-18.zip
The source is at https://github.com/ah-/koboplugins


Night Mode [Glo/Touch/Mini]
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=212162
Original Version - KevenShortl:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinShort View Post
Here's a new hack that will hopefully benefit some people (I know I use it!).



A little while back I released a very hacky white on black display mode for the Glo. Not long after, yoq put together a much nicer version of the hack, which you can download here.


Installation - works on Touch, Glo and Mini

You'll need to install the Kobo Tweaks plugin and create a new file named "kobotweaks.ini" in the .kobo folder on your Kobo. Put these lines in kobotweaks.ini:
Code:
[Global]
compatFirmware=2.5.1

[CustomCommands]
Toggle Night Mode=tweaks.executeSystemCmd(\"/mnt/onboard/.kobo/nightmode.sh\")
Download and extract "screenInv.zip", below. Inside the "installer" folder, there is a KoboRoot.tgz file. Put the KoboRoot.tgz file in the .kobo folder on your Kobo. After your device reboots, open the Library to activate the plugin, then go back to the home screen. Under the "Tools" menu you can now select "Toggle Night Mode" to turn the hack on and off.


Newer Version - Yoq
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by yoq View Post
Nightmode for Kobo
Read light-on-dark on your Kobo AuraHD / Glo / Touch or Mini!



Installation / Removal
  • Download the attached zip file
  • Connect your Kobo to your computer
  • Extract the file KoboRoot.tgz from the installer / uninstaller folder
  • Copy it to the .kobo folder on your device
  • Safely remove the USB storage and unplug
  • Your device will reboot automatically

Control nightmode
There are two ways to control this mod:
  • Long-press the LIGHT/HOME button to toggle on/off
  • Use a launcher to start the nightmode.sh script:
    • KoboLauncher: Add:
      Night Mode = /mnt/onboard/.kobo/nightmode.sh
      to .kobo/KoboLauncher/kobo_launcher.ini
    • or KoboTweaks: (not working on 2.6+) Add:
      Night Mode=tweaks.executeSystemCmd(\"/mnt/onboard/.kobo/nightmode.sh\")
      to .kobo/kobotewaks.ini

Configuration
In your .kobo folder, there will be a configuration file called nightmode.ini. You can change whether the state should be retained over a restart of the device, the default state after power up and the duration for a long press. The new setting will take effect after a restart.

FAQ
  • I have updated my firmware and it stopped working!
    Simply install the mod again
  • Will this drain my battery?
    The effect on battery life should be negligible
  • I can see more ghosting when the mod is activated!
    This is normal, as eInk screens are optimized for black-on-white mode. Change the refresh rate if it annoys you.

More info
For a more detailed description, the changelog and the source code, visit github:
http://dbeinder.github.io/kobo-nightmode

Credits
  • KevinShort, for the idea and a first proof of concept
  • Nicolas Devillard and others, for the iniParser library


How to backup your Kobo's firmware on an SD card without opening it
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=212474
Current Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by met67 View Post
Hi,

waiting for my Aura to come, I put together a simple hack to automatically dump the internal firmware of a Mark 4 Kobo (i.e. Mini, Glo, Aura and recent Touch) on an SD card. This should work on any recent version of the firmware...

As usual I assume no responsibility for any damage on your device, I have tested it on a Glo and it works for me…

You will need a SD card with enough free space to hold the whole firmware (i.e, 2/4GB for Glo, 4 for Aura, and so on). I used a 16GB SD, just to be sure
You should also start with a fully charged Kobo.

The trick uses a modified upgrade-wifi.sh script in /etc/init.d; this script is started during a firmware upgrade when there is a upgrade folder in .kobo, and I modified it to dump the internal card to folder KoboDump in the SD.

In order to dump the firmware, insert an SD with at least 2GB free (I suggest using a larger card…) in your Kobo, connect it to the PC and create an empty folder named KoboDump on the root of the SD. Then extract the contents of DumpScript zip and copy KoboRoot.tgz and upgrade folder in folder .kobo within the internal memory (be careful that KoboRoot.tgz and upgrade should be right within .kobo folder and not in a subfolder).

Now eject your Kobo and disconnect it from the PC: you should see the usual upgrade screens. If everything goes as expected, you should wait for a long time while the script dumps the firmware: on a Glo I waited more than 25 minutes for a 2GB dump.

After a (possibly quite) long time, your Kobo will restart. Connect it again to the PC and you should find that the KoboDump folder has been renamed to KoboDumpDone. Inside it you should find a dump.img file: this is your dump.
Copy it on your PC and you should be able to open it (under Windows) with DiskInternal’s Linux Reader, which gives you access to all the partitions: rootfs, recoveryfs and FAT.

To restore the original upgrade-wifi.sh, extract the KoboRoot.tgz from OriginalScript zip to the .kobo folder, disconnect and wait a couple of minutes until the script is copied back.

Let me know if this works for you, and which model you dumped with this.


Cross Compiling for Kobo on PC
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=216923
Current Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by yoq View Post
you can compile on your pc for the kobo although it is a different processor architecture, it's called cross-compiling.

kobo supplies all you need on their github repository: https://github.com/kobolabs/Kobo-Reader
but afaik it's only possible to download the whole 3.5G repo, so i'll post the links here for what you need to compile for the glo:

assuming you are running 2.6+, use this toolchain:
Code:
gcc-linaro-arm-linux-gnueabihf-4.8-2013.04-20130417
you can get it here: https://launchpad.net/linaro-toolcha...ries/+download
linux:https://launchpad.net/linaro-toolcha..._linux.tar.bz2
win32: https://launchpad.net/linaro-toolcha...0417_win32.exe
i'm a linux user, so i haven't tried the windows version, but it should work as well.

you'll probably need some linux headers, this is the kernel for the glo and most newer models:
http://www.sendspace.com/file/0sd6ej

compile with:
Code:
arm-linux-gnueabihf-g++ -I X:/path/to/linux-2.6.35.3-507/include -Wall -o programFilename code.c
happy coding


Memory Upgrade Mod Guide (With Pictures)
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=209122

This is for a GLO but similar techniques will work on any of the SD card based Kobo's
Current Instructions: See main thread

Koreader running on Kobos
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=216960
Current Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by giorgio130 View Post
Quick post in order to deliver what I worked on lately.
This is the build of Koreader I'm actually using on my Glo; so far as I can tell, it is working close to perfectly.
The modifications needed to support our platform have been integrated in the main project, so everyone wanting to do so can head over to https://github.com/koreader/koreader, checkout the source and build his own copy!
Things that are still missing:
- suspend support (hard to implement)
- avoid a reboot after exiting koreader (maybe a little easier)
- light control.

Installing instructions:
just place the folder "koreader" inside the zip to your .kobo folder;
use your favourite mean (tweaks, launcher, whatever) to execute the command
Code:
/mnt/onboard/.kobo/koreader/koreader_kobo.sh /mnt/onboard
This should be it. Performance is much better than using my old build of KPV when using reflow, and there are many other improvements. Enjoy!

Edit: Use koreader_old.zip for 2.5.x or older firmware; for 2.6.1 use the other archive.


Custom Dictionaries
Spoiler:

Main Threads: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=196925 and http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=194986
Current Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShellShock View Post
Due to the great work of other forum members it is now possible to create your own dictionaries for the Kobo Glo and Touch, for firmware 2.1.4 or later. Why do this? Well, the dictionaries provided by Kobo are a bit limited, and it is fun anyway to see what can be done.

To use the new dictionaries:
  1. Connect your Kobo to your PC.
  2. On the Kobo go to the ".kobo\dict" folder, and rename "dicthtml.zip" to "dicthtml.backup.zip". This backs up your existing English dictionary (which I assume you already have installed).
  3. Download the appropriate zip file below and unzip it to extract the dicthtml.zip file inside. Do not unzip the dicthtml.zip file.
  4. Copy the dicthtml.zip file to the ".kobo\dict" folder on the reader.
  5. Eject/disconnect your Kobo.
  6. Go into the dictionary screen, e.g., if you have a book open, tap the book icon on the bottom menu, and select Definition.
  7. Flip the language from English to e.g., Deutsch and back again. This makes the Kobo refresh the English dictionary cache. You only have to do this once.
  8. The new dictionary is now ready to use.

It is possible to install the new dictionary to replace one of the other built-in Kobo dictionaries, by replacing the appropriate file with the custom dictionary, e.g., dicthtml-de.zip to replace the Deutsch dictionary. That way you can swop between the Kobo English dictionary and the custom English dictionary.

One minor point: when you view a definition in the custom dictionary the page will still display "Source: Merriam-Webster's English Dictionary" (which is the Kobo dictionary). This description is not actually part of the dictionary file but seems to be held elsewhere in the firmware. You can tell that you are in fact using one of the custom dictionaries because their word definitions usually have an initial upper case letter, whereas in the Kobo Merriam-Webster dictionary they generally start with a lower case letter.

Project Gutenberg notice:

Chambers1908.zip: Chamber's Twentieth Century Dictionary of the English Language, Rev. Thomas Davidson (1908), London. Source: Project Gutenberg. Over 33,000 definitions; it is particularly good for British English and historical fiction, as it contains archaic words that are not in the more modern English dictionary supplied with the Kobo. But don't go looking up "twitter" or "facebook"!

Websters1913.zip: Webster's Unabridged Dictionary, various, (1913), USA. Source: originally Project Gutenberg, but I used the excellent epub compiled by MobileRead member nrapallo as my starting point. This dictionary has over 110,000 definitions (compared to the 80,000 or so in the Kobo dictionary), many of them with lengthy descriptions (generally longer than in the Chambers). It is primarily focused on American English spellings; it has British English spellings too, but the definitions simply refer to the American equivalent. For more information about this dictionary, including pronunciation and abbreviation guides, see here.

HowToCreateKoboDictionaries.zip, v 1.1: Instructions on how to create your own custom Kobo dictionaries.

marisa.zip: Marisa tools for creating dictionary index.

Penelope Instructions
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlPe View Post
Hi all,

I implemented the output to Kobo format into Penelope, my dictionary-converter tool.

Source code: http://code.google.com/p/penelope-dictionary-converter/
Doc/explanation: http://www.albertopettarin.it/penelope.html

Note that you will probably need Python 2.6+ (not Python 3.x) to run it.

Example:
Code:
$ python penelope.py --output-kobo -p bar -f en -t it
Create English-to-Italian dictionary in Kobo format (dicthtml-en-it.zip), from StarDict files bar.*

Example 2:
Code:
$ python penelope.py --xml --output-kobo -p bar -f en -t en
Create English dictionary in Kobo format (dicthtml.zip), from XML file bar.xml

===

NOTE 1: probably the management of 11.html entries is not completely correct right now. At the moment every key NOT starting as [a-z][a-z] (when lowercased) will go to 11.html. Better ideas?

NOTE 2: you will need to modify MARISA_BUILD_PATH in penelope.py, pointing it to the directory containing a working build of MARISA.


improved hyphenation dictionaries:
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/new...eply&p=2499153
Installation Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by ewphoenix123 View Post
I uploaded the new Hyphenation dictionaries for you, and a backup of the original.
You can install it by renaming the according tgz file to KoboRoot.tgz and placing it in your .kobo folder.

All credit for the dictonaries belongs to yen

Original Location: http://www.lesen.net/forum/ebook-rea...cketbook-verw/ (in German)

Registration Bypassing
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=171664
Instructions:
Spoiler:

Note that various revisions of the Kobo f/w have changed the columns in the user table, and it's possible you will need to tailor the insert. Of course, you can also use other tools besides SQLITE3; I've had a lot of success with the open source tool DBeaver

Quote:
Originally Posted by rashkae View Post
If you buy a Kobo with an older firmware, it will work as a pure play reader (but wifi will be disabled, so not downloading from Calibre server for you.) However, as old units eventually sell out and new units go on store shelves with newer firmware, even that function will be disabled. The new firmware will not accept new books until it's registered. New firmware is also needed for basic fuctions, (Like your own bookmarks, rather than just remembering the page where the book was last closed.)

Fortunately, you can have your cake and eat it too. Especially if you are a Linux user. If you must buy a Kobo rather than a Sony, there are 2 things you can do to get a full function device:

1. Instlal SQLite3 and open the KoboReader.sqlite in the .kobo directory.

Give it this command:

INSERT INTO "user" VALUES('aaaaaaaa-aaaa-aaaa-aaaa-aaaaaaaaaaaa','aaaaaaaa-aaaa-aaaa-aaaa-aaaaaaaaaaaa','xxxx@xxxx.xx','xxxx@xxxx.xx','2aaaa aaaaaaaaaaaaa==');

Next, you can download firmware 1.9.16.zip from Kobo. They don't publicize the link, but you should be able to find it in the Firmware thread.

Unzip the contents of the zip file into the .kobo directory. Eject/Unmount the Kobo and disconnect. It should update itself and enable all functions that are usually disabled until registered.

You can PM me if you need further clarification, but again, if all this seems like insane work to make a device you pay money for work, splurge a little on the Sony.


Disable google analytics:
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=162713
Instructions:
Spoiler:

Technique should work for any and all Kobo's and will need to be redone after any f/w upgrades.
Quote:
Originally Posted by novou View Post
Scroll down for instructions to disable tracking.

Almost definitely true, non-sensational facts about Kobo's use of Google Analytics. tl;dr:
  • KT Usage data is being sent to Google-Analytics (If/when your KT is online and Google Analytics is accessible.)
  • This is not a new part of .16. It's probably been there since launch.
  • Usage data includes stuff such as 'home screen loaded @time', 'book view opened for X minutes @time,' 'device put to sleep @time'
  • If you keep your KT in airplane mode your data is not sent (if you disable it to update over WiFi, some stats probably are sent.)
  • A session lasts until power-off/reboot (or 500 GA actions, no idea if the Kobo then makes a new session or pauses logging.)
  • Unsent data is cleared at each reboot.
  • Randomly assigned user ID's are not kept across sessions. They are consistent within sessions.
  • This is not sending your credit card number, pet's name, side-loaded books, or email address to Google. (You're probably doing that already.)
  • Kobo cannot see your IP or practically associate your actions with your KoboBooks account.
    Google can see, and is undoubtedly logging IP's.
  • Traffic is not 'redirected through Google Analytics'
  • This has nothing to do with the built-in browser.
  • devices.kobo.com is an illusion.

The GAQueue variable in .kobo/Kobo/Kobo eReader.conf stores the Google-Analytics callbacks until the next time you connect the KT to the Internet. The GAQueue is cleared on each reboot.

If you want to decode the entries in the GAQueue variable, go ahead.
The documentation is right here: Most values, GA's cookies, the utms parameter.

Here's a dissection for nerds, of what data is sent/stored:
http://pastie.org/3079390

The KT reports URL's like 'http://devices.kobo.com/ReadingView/Book' to GA. 'devices.kobo.com' doesn't exist. It's not a real subdomain, and not because of some sinister 'hide the evidence' motive either. (If that were the case, the configuration file would be obfuscated and Kobo's CEO would have way more money than he does now.)

Google Analytics provides a handy, free of charge, platform and lots of pre-built tools for monitoring websites. All Kobo has done is made KT send stats to GA as if the device is a website you're browsing. They're using the GA for mobile devices approach described here.

As Lunchtray said, a device tracking usage metrics is not surprising. But I disagree with them about whether stats of the detail they described using for their games (tracking individual option usage, etc.) are necessary, or even that useful.

I'd known about the KT's GA integration for a while, but after just now looking into the implementation, I am concerned by the detail of the stats. I'm happy to see that Kobo has made an effort to avoid much of the highly intrusive, and useless, tracking the a tool like GA affords. They don't tie metrics to accounts and clear UID's and unsent callbacks across sessions (meaning they don't track devices across reboots.)

But aiming to report each time you load the home-screen, or read a book for X minutes nonetheless seems like overkill to me. Their metrics are not super-invasive, and an extremely far cry from stuff like CarrierIQ, or individual menu button tracking.

That said, for me at least, they still do cross the line into 'creepy,' especially since the callbacks are being sent to Google, where those stats will be be saved and analyzed as a part of Google's hoard of personal data. (If it were Kobo infrastructure, I'd still be concerned, but much less so. Kobo isn't a business built on harvesting personal data.)

Marco Arment describes the creepy threshold in mobile analytics better than I could. (49mins in, past all the coffee talk)

How to disable Google Analytics on the Kobo Touch

What this does: it edits the hosts file of the Kobo Touch so www.google-analytics.com is translated to the loopback IP address of your device: 127.0.0.1. This means the device can't talk to Google Analytics, thus breaking stats tracking.

The exact line I'm adding to the /etc/hosts file is '127.0.0.1 www.google-analytics.com ssl.google-analytics.com google-analytics.com' I encourage you to open up the KoboRoot.tgz file and verify this yourself.

Directions:
Save this file in your KT's '.kobo' directory.
Eject & disconnect.
Watch 0.5 seconds of the upgrade animation.
Be happy.


(KoboRoot.tgz is deleted after the upgrade. Don't worry.)

The tweak should persist across upgrades, unless the devs ship a hosts file in an update, but that's very unlikely.

I was able to whip this up thanks to the Kobo's accessible system, research done by Stef70 and the Hacking into the KT & Manually upgrading KT firmware threads. Much love.


Quick Guide to Shelf Management with calibre 0.9.1 & above (Touch / Glo / Mini /Aura)

Summary of Modified Fonts

HOWTO make a Kobo sleep cover from a regular cover for about $2

calibre - Kobo Device Driver Update
Spoiler:

This is the driver included as standard in calibre. This driver handles ePubs
Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=192863

calibre -[Device Plugin] Kobo Touch Extended Driver
Spoiler:

This is an optional driver for calibre that handles the conversion of material from standard ePub format to Kobo's kEpub format. The main reason for this transformation is to ensure reading of eBooks is done via the Kobo ACCESS renderer for ePubs as opposed to their Adobe RMSDK based engine.
Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=211135

calibre - [GUI Plugin] Kobo Utilities
Spoiler:

Optional plugin for calibre that adds functions such as backup and restore reading location in all books on the Kobo.
Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=215339

Kobo - fullscreen
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=217192
No one post in the thread though seems to include installation instructions.

Firmware mod: reducing size of the bottom bar (pageometer)
Spoiler:

Similiar in scope to Kobo - fullscreen
Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=217434
Instructions:
Spoiler:

While not pointed out here, the mod is actually editing the libnickel.so.1.0.0 file. Do take care doing this; I for one would suggest using a Hex Editor rather than a text editor. For possible tools this link seems to have some suggestions. Also do take care in how you install this mod.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anak View Post
I've played around with the firmware to change the dimensions of the bottom bar in reading mode. See the attached file for a visual result.
The first picture shows a screen shot of the originial firmware 2.5.1. bottom bar
The second and fourth picture show the adjusted page number footer in reading mode.
The third picture shows the menu bar of which the dimensions have not changed (the changes have no effect on the menu bar). Compare with the second picture.
The second and third picture show the modified page number footer in reading mode.

Second image
Code:
ReadingFooter {
	min-height: 40px;
	max-height: 40px;
	qproperty-footerMargin: 20;
}
Third image
Code:
ReadingFooter {
	min-height: 30px;
	max-height: 30px;
	qproperty-footerMargin: 30;
}
Device: Kobo Touch
Firmware: 2.5.1.
File: libnickel.so.1.0.0
Path: \usr\local\Kobo


Stop the FLASH to BLACK
Spoiler:

Not sure of a better description for this
Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...&postcount=221
Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2bits View Post
TRADE slight degradation of type definition for elimination of flash to BLACK and increase battery life ...

The latest firmware updates have reduced ghosting
(this has -slightly- slowed page turn times)

so... as the ghosting is greatly reduced ...

you might want to consider completely STOPPING the screen flashing to BLACK every 1-6 page turns due to the old refresh scheme,

and

- get faster page turns that are
- easier on eyes &
- increase in battery life too

* kobo mainly uses battery to draw new pages *

it takes more power to refresh a page to black and then display the new page than to just "overwrite" old page with new page]

You do this easy-hack by re-setting the refresh variable to 90
as follows:

[Connect kobo to your computer with hidden files displayed]

Navigate to the file:

Kobo eReader.conf (there's a space in the name)

found at

KOBOeReader/.kobo/Kobo/Kobo eReader.conf

* BACKUP the file 1st *

Copy file:

Kobo eReader.conf and rename it to
Kobo eReader.conf.orig

Then make the change in

Kobo eReader.conf

[at ~ 40 lines from the end of the file]

in the [Reading] section ...
change the value of variable

numPartialUpdatePageTurns

from (1-6) to 90

to give result as follows:

numPartialUpdatePageTurns=90

Save file and Exit

Now while reading, enjoy flash free reading and if you notice ghosting (after very MANY page turns) to clean up the type

MANUALLY REFRESH PAGE by ...

1) touch page bottom then
2) touch page middle

Quick and Easy!


Hacking SD card file system
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=213727
No definitive post in there; just a lot of discussions

How to backup your Kobo's firmware on an SD card without opening it

fmon - a tool for starting processes based on files being accessed
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho....php?p=2572011
Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by sergeyvl12 View Post
Hi!

File monitor is a simple tool that allows to track opening of the specific files (e.g. png icons) and run specific commands in response. For today it seems that is is the only way to run shell scripts and programs on kobo.

Earlier it was the part of KoboLauncher, but I decided to improve it and make the separate installation.

You can download it (including the sources) here:

http://pbchess.vlasovsoft.net/files/kobo/fmon.zip

Installation:

1. Install KoboRoot.tgz
2. Create .kobo/fmon directory and copy "fmon" executable file there
3. copy on_start.sh to your .kobo directory
4. edit on_start.sh - add the custom commands.
5. copy png icons into the root of kobo's flash.

on_start.sh example:

Code:
#!/bin/sh
root=/mnt/onboard
$root/.kobo/fmon/fmon $root/launcher.png $root/.kobo/KoboLauncher/KoboLauncher.sh >> $root/.kobo/fmon/fmon.log.txt 2>&1 &
$root/.kobo/fmon/fmon $root/reboot.png $root/.kobo/KoboLauncher/utils/reboot.sh >> $root/.kobo/fmon/fmon.log.txt 2>&1 &
KoboLauncher.sh will be executed after launcher.png opening; reboot.sh will be executed after reboot.png opening from the kobo shell.

on_start.sh also allows to run another specific commands during kobo startup.

IMPORTANT:

1. on_start.sh is executed from on_animator.sh when onboard flash is already mounted. There is almost no risk to spoil your kobo boot process editing on_start.sh because on_animator.sh is a background process.

have fun!


SD Card Performance - some discussions and info
Spoiler:

Investigations have been done on the performance of various SD card classes. There is no definitive thread but here are some interesting posts and observations.

Try searching on "Small block writes".

Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by DNSB View Post
In the case of the Glo, that is what happened when I tried a factory reset.

When I was playing with the Glo, I found that selecting a uSD card with better small block writes made a very noticeable improvement in the speed of the device. Small block reads also seem to have a noticeable effect but the small block write speed is the one that varies horribly. I found that the SanDisk Class 4 cards gave me the best results.

Very often the Class 10 cards have done optimization for speed with large data blocks (writing 10MB on my digital camera). They seem to sacrifice small block speeds to obtain the better large block speeds.

I'm one of the people mentioning the lower class cards as being better in some circumstances. This originally came out of a Nook related discussion where some people found their Nook booted from an SD card performed well and others complaining this made their Nook run slower than molasses running uphill in Tuktoyaktuk in January.

I've attached 3 images from various Crystal DiskMark tests I ran on microSD cards (Lexar Class 10, Patriot Class 10 and a SanDisk Class 4 all 8GB) using the internal card reader on my laptop. In my digital and video cameras, the two Class 10 cards worked well. In my Glo, they made it noticeably slower. I suspect this is due to the small block writes where the Class 4 SanDisk was 65 to 171 times faster. The similarity of the sequential read speeds is, I suspect, a limitation of the Ricoh chip used for the card reader.

Regards,
David

Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by DNSB View Post
I'd suggest looking at a SanDisk class 4 uSD card instead. Do a search on small block writes for the reasons why. I posted some stuff in the memory upgrade with pictures thread in the Developer's Corner.

Regards,
David

Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by DNSB View Post
I played with the internal memory upgrade and have found that I needed to be selective with the SD card I used. I originally tried a Kingston class 10 16GB card but found that my Glo was noticeably slower than the original card.

So I had fun with testing various uSD cards and found the best one I had on hand was a Sandisk class 4 16GB card. Crystal DiskMark said it was much faster (1.81MB/s vs 0.019MB/s)* than the Kingston on small block random writes and 1.5x (3.1MB/s vs 2.03MB/s) faster on small block random reads. With that card, the Kobo is back to what seems to me to be the same speed as the original 2GB card.

* I ran the write test 4 times before I accepted the results. 95x was hard to believe.

Makes sense in a way since the original thread where I ran into the discussion of SD card speeds was installing CyanogenMod 7 on a Nook booting from the external SD card slot.

Regards,
David

Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by DNSB View Post
From what I found during my testing, it can be more than a small difference in performance. Quite a few manufacturers have sacrificed read/write performance for smaller files (<1MB) to improve performance handling large files. 2 Lexar 16GB U1 cards that work great in my D7100 (average RAW size is ~28MB, average JPG size is 11MB) are lousy in my Aura more than quadrupling the time required to process a batch of 500 epubs. Their 104MB/S U1 speed means very little when my average file size for an epub is less than 500KB while the chapter files in the zip wrapper for an epub average ~20KB after decompression. I might also note that the Aura mounts the cards directly, the D7100 needs a uSD/SD adapter.

Regards,
David

Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by DNSB View Post
Brand wise, I found that SanDisk and Samsung both had consistently decent small block read/write performance. Several other brands had atrocious small block performance. Easiest thing to do on a Windows machine is to use CrystalDiskMark to do your own benchmarks. So far I have only done tests up to 16GB sized cards though I may be getting a pair of 32 or 64GB cards for my camera before heading out on vacation -- a 24 megapixel sensor is nice but you chew up storage space very rapidly.

Regards,
David

Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by DNSB View Post
The Lexar UHS-1 cards I'm using in my camera also work in my Aura. Performance is not that great since their small block read/write performance is pretty poor.

Regards,
David


Wikipedia, new translation options, and many other tweaks to nickel
Spoiler:

Kobo have a series of undocumented option that can be set in the Kobo eReader.conf file (located in .kobo/Kobo on the device).
As with all other features, this list might change; no guarantee that using any of these features might not introduce other issues, or cause device instability.

To add any of these settings to the Kobo eReader.conf file, first check if the required section for the setting already exists. If it does, simply add the new keyword / value pair to the existing section, be sure to leave no blank lines before the new line. On the other hand, if it's a whole new section, just add the section and keyword / value pair to the end of the file. Section names are enclosed in square brackets.

So for example, if you wanted to enable FullBookPageNumbers in the FeatureSettings section, first look for [FeatureSettings]. If not found, add the line [FeatureSettings]. Then add FullBookPageNumbers=true to the FeatureSettings section.

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=218376

Loading a custom CSS on kepub opening

Installing strace
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...38#post2578738
Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by met67 View Post
I've been asked more info on how I run strace on Kobo to gather infos on nickel (see here), so I'll open a new, dedicated, thread.

In order to run strace, you need to have telnet/ftp or ssh access to your kobo, you can find more info on this in several threads here in MobileRead.

First step is to download strace.zip from this post and extract the strace executable from the archive.

Next put strace in your Kobo, e.g. in /root (you can use ftp for this).

Now you must flag the command as executable, by using this command from telnet:
Code:
chmod +x /root/strace
In order to use strace, you must launch a new executable or attach to a running process. Since nickel should be already running on your Kobo, you can find its pid with the 'ps' command:
Code:
ps | grep nickel
Suppose that the process id of nickel is 510, you can run strace on it with
Code:
/root/strace -p 510
If you are interested only in file operations, you can use the '-e' option of strace like this:
Code:
/root/strace -e trace=file -p 510
strace has a lot of other options, you can find them in its man page

Hope this helps.


Python for Kobo Firmware 2.6+
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=219173
Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinShort View Post
Python for Kobo devices running firmware 2.6 and newer.

Download Here


Usage
  • To install, just extract the zip file onto your Kobo.
  • For easy running of Python, create a symlink in /usr/bin to your Python binary:
    Code:
    ln -s <your python location>/bin/python2.7 /usr/bin/python
  • If you want to use Pygame, start Python like this:
    Code:
    LD_LIBRARY_PATH=<your python location>/pygamelibs/ python


Touch Python/Pygame successfully running on Kobo Touch (older firmware)
Spoiler:

Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=169261
Instructions:
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinShort View Post
I recently managed to get python and the pygame module working on my Kobo Touch.
So I whipped up a couple of quick examples, and I put them, along with python and
pygame, in a KoboRoot.tgz file. Here's a download link.

Install it by extracting the zip file and copying the KoboRoot.tgz file to the .kobo
folder on your Touch. Now telnet into your Touch and run:
Code:
ln -s /mnt/onboard/.python/bin/python /usr/bin/python
To start the examples, just do:
Code:
python menu.py
Pressing the Kobo's home button when running an example will take you back
to the example menu. In pong, the power switch will flash the screen.

As would be expected, pygame has a couple of problems on the Kobo.
  • Sometimes pygame will hang when trying to start its display. When this happens,
    pressing CTRL+C seems to snap it back into action.
  • The refresh rate of the e-ink is pretty bad. I know it can do better, the web browser
    can display black-and-white animated GIFs quite well in partial-refresh mode.

You'll most likely want to stop the Kobo's graphical application, Nickel, before you
start the pygame examples. You can do so with:
Code:
killall nickel
Please note that when you want nickel to start running again, you'll have to press
the small reset button on the back of the Touch, or run the command:
Code:
reboot
How it was done
I compiled python and pygame on a virtual debian arm machine,
and I then copied python and the necessary lib*.so files to my Kobo. Quite easy.
Here are the tutorials I followed to setup a virtual debian arm machine.

Kobo Patcher
Spoiler:

This is a Windows based utility to help patch the libnickel.so to make certain changes. The main thread is in russian, and is located at http://www.the-ebook.org/forum/viewt...076211#1076211

I have also started a thread here for people to discuss it's usage and share conf. files.

New version: Patch 06

The current download is located at http://rghost.ru/48210870 (06 level of patch)

Some discussion on it can be found here at Mobile Read starting around this post http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho....php?p=2588016

A translation of the instructions for patch level 06 follows.
Spoiler:

Quote:
mz_koboreaderpatch_06

This patch contains:
  • a utility KPG (Kobo Patch Generator);
  • customizable (via CSS) bottom margin;
  • Leading regulation (aka line spacing, line spacing aka);
  • Wi-Fi is no longer disabled if not used, if the device does not sleep (if sleep - still off);
  • Advanced-settings for any font, including user;
  • regulation of font sizes;
  • regulation size of the left and right margins;
  • for 2.8.1: the ability to remove from the list of system fonts reading room ( The default patch off! fonts are only removed from the list in the system they are used and active!)
  • for 2.8.1: good brightness control (on a button + / - change brightness in increments of 1 instead of 10)
  • for 2.8 .1 Additional Russian keyboard layout (as usual, you can customize yourself in the config KPG);
  • for 2.8.1: the browser should now download any files.

New version:
  • Kobo Patch Generator has been updated to version 1.2: Added support for method replace_utf8chars now referred to in the output and disabled patches, minor fixes;
  • thanks replace_utf8chars was possible to change the overlay system keyboard;
  • new patches to 2.8.1: the ability to remove from the list of system fonts reading room, a comfortable brightness control, additional Russian keyboard layout, the browser now should download any files.

How to install a personal patch:
  1. Download archive: http://rghost.ru/48210870
  2. Unpack the archive to a convenient folder.
  3. Transferring files and kpg.conf libnickel.so.1.0.0 for your version of firmware to a convenient folder, where there is kpg.exe.
  4. Any text editor edit the file kpg.conf to your liking and understanding.
  5. Run kpg.exe (preferably in the console) and wait for it to finish.
  6. We transfer the file from KoboRoot.tgz convenient folder to folder. Kobo memory device.
  7. Making the safe shutdown of the device in your OS.
  8. Turning off the device from the USB-Lace.
  9. We wait until the installation is complete, automatic update and reboot the device.
  10. Rejoice.

How to remove personal patch (return-reader in the "factory" condition):

Replace the previous instructions to paragraph 4: "4. Any file with a text editor do kpg.conf empty (or comment out all lines in it)." and execute it.


Kobo Wifi Weather Forecast
Spoiler:

NOTE: New one can be found at https://bitbucket.org/david_weese/kobo-weather-app


This is an older hack but might still be of interest
Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=194376

How to take a screen print
Spoiler:

Buried in the bowels of both the 2.8.1 f/w discussion, and the list of undocumented settings is this gem
Spoiler:
Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by davidfor View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by babadockia View Post
how did you do that screenshot? what magic did you use?
You add the following to the configuration file:

Code:
[FeatureSettings]
Screenshots=true
Then using the power button will take an screenshot. The side-effect is that you can't use the power button to put the device to sleep or turn it off.

The screenshots are saved in the root of the main memory.


Kobo as a Linux tablet - sample image
Spoiler:

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarekGibek View Post
Hi!

I was able to make all required changes in the kernel sources to be able to install Linux inside and configure everything to be more or less usable on such small device.

Here you can find sample SD card image and test it yourself:
https://sites.google.com/site/gibekm...kobo-as-tablet
Main Thread: Kobo as a Linux tables - sample image

XCSoar for the Kobo Mini
Spoiler:

This mod is way WAY outside our normal listings, but is a pointer to work being done to allow XCSoar (a tactical glide computer) to run on a Kobo Glo / Mini
Main Thread: http://forum.xcsoar.org/viewtopic.ph...eabfccaf94f35f


Android on Glo
Spoiler:

Based on the discovery of an Android based device (the Tolino Shine) that appears to be the same h/w as the Glo, work has been undertaken to allow the installation of Android on the Glo.
Main Thread: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=225940


How to turn your Kobo Mini to a display for temperature sensors

Last edited by PeterT; 11-24-2013 at 09:51 AM.
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Old 07-03-2013, 03:11 AM   #2
Lucas Malor
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Even if it's not an hack to Kobo software, can you add also a link to the Calibre plugin for kobo epubs?
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Old 07-03-2013, 05:51 AM   #3
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Old 07-03-2013, 09:14 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas Malor View Post
Even if it's not an hack to Kobo software, can you add also a link to the Calibre plugin for kobo epubs?
I think that might be better in a calibre tips and tricks thread in the main Kobo forum.
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Old 07-03-2013, 11:04 AM   #5
genuk
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Kobo Touch custom boot animation:
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=150706
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Old 07-04-2013, 01:25 PM   #6
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The newer Night Mode tweak from yoq seems to have disappeared from Mobileread
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Old 07-04-2013, 01:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thepossum View Post
The newer Night Mode tweak from yoq seems to have disappeared from Mobileread
His thread got merged in with the other thread. If you click on the blue icon besides his quote in my initial post, you will be redirected to his post.
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Old 07-04-2013, 04:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas Malor View Post
Even if it's not an hack to Kobo software, can you add also a link to the Calibre plugin for kobo epubs?
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterT View Post
I think that might be better in a calibre tips and tricks thread in the main Kobo forum.
I see your point PeterT, but for people this thread might be a first stop place. So having this widely used ability listed here may make things easier to grasp (and avoid the creation of many threads).
With all those hacks/mods/drivers, being a Kobo newbie is not an easy thing

Great thread idea by the way!
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Old 07-04-2013, 05:23 PM   #9
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I suppose I have no choice but to include calibre links here. My reluctance though is due to the fact that I seriously doubt newcomers to the kobo world would check out a sub-forum called "Kobo Developer's Corner".
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Old 07-05-2013, 07:13 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterT View Post
His thread got merged in with the other thread. If you click on the blue icon besides his quote in my initial post, you will be redirected to his post.
No, I guess I meant that the external link to github is no longer available:

http://yox.github.io/kobo-nightmode/ just says "404 There isn't a GitHub Page here."
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Old 07-05-2013, 07:42 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thepossum View Post
No, I guess I meant that the external link to github is no longer available:

http://yox.github.io/kobo-nightmode/ just says "404 There isn't a GitHub Page here."
Fixed. He has changed the location of the repository. I have changed the original quoted message in my summary post.
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Old 07-06-2013, 02:25 PM   #12
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Old 07-07-2013, 02:10 PM   #13
rayhigh
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Where can I find instructions on how to backup Kobo Aura and Mini databases? I've tried searching the forum, googling, to no avail. Someone have a link, I'm sure it's buried here somewhere...thanks.
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Old 07-07-2013, 03:01 PM   #14
Lucas Malor
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Database is the file with .sqlite extension in the .kobo directory.
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Old 07-07-2013, 03:06 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas Malor View Post
Database is the file with .sqlite extension in the .kobo directory.
so just copy it on your laptop/desktop, and that is your backup!
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