Useful article on patching Nokia DCT4+ firmware

Michael Spacefalcon msokolov at ivan.Harhan.ORG
Thu May 8 20:54:45 UTC 2014


"E:V:A" <xdae3v3a at gmail.com> wrote:

> That was indeed a very nice and entertaining find. Also the many links 
> within that document should let you find both useful code and 
> contacts. Furthermore, what is interesting is that it also provides 
> a historical perspective of the xgold modems, which should be useful in 
> paving the way to deeper studies in the more modern versions.

Entertaining as it is, keep in mind that the fellow who did that hack
and wrote the article about it got *paid* to make those Kosher phones
for the religious customers in question.  In the absence of such a
paid arrangement, I don't really understand why someone would willingly
waste her time trying to hack a "modern" phone, dealing with chips sans
docs, tivoized bootloaders and firmware that only exists as binaries
without source or even semi-src.  The big question is: WHY would anyone
willingly choose to suffer through that mess, when instead one can
choose to use a phone based on the good old Calypso chipset, with full
docs, full schematics for some models, and a published semi-src for
TI's reference firmware version?

Yes, Calypso is old.  Ancient, to be more precise.  But so what?  It
still works!  If it ain't broke, don't fix it.  Dismissing a perfectly
working and usable solution merely because of its mature age is
irrational.

Yes, Calypso-based phones are no longer made, and every existing model
that is still obtainable on ebay etc is crippled in one way or another.
But so what?  We can solve this problem by building our own Calypso-
based "dumbphone", and making it exactly the way we like.

Yes, Calypso chips themselves aren't made any more either.  But what
is the total number of people in the world who would want a "dumbphone"
running their own free firmware?  Is it greater or less than 100?  If
the number of people desiring such a phone is <= 100, I already have
enough Calypso+etc chipsets for all 100 of us sitting in my desk
drawer.  If the number of interested persons is > 100, there should be
more chips still available in the vast nation of China.

Yes, the available surplus of Calypso/Iota/Rita chips won't last
forever.  But if there really are so many of us to exhaust that supply,
then surely we could pay some Chinese chip fab to reverse-eng that old
silicon and fab new verbatim clones in whatever quantity we need.

I just posted an update to the other mailing list, showing where the
free & usable Calypso dumbphone project currently stands and how it is
progressing:

http://lists.openmoko.org/pipermail/community/2014-May/069469.html

VLR,
SF




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