Kobo GloHD firmware 3.17.0 mega update (KSM, nickel patch, ssh, fonts)
As with all the previous versions, I have prepared a mega update for the Kobo firmware 3.17.0. Big warning for a start – this is for Mark6 hardware, thus GloHD only. The update includes all my favorite patches and features. Please see details (although for for Kobo Glo) for 3.16.0, 3.15.0, 3.13.1 and 3.12.1. As before, the following addons are included: Kobo Start Menu, koreader, coolreader, pbchess, ssh access, custom dictionaries, and some side-loaded fonts. What I dropped this time is most of the kobohack part, as the libraries seem to get outdated. But I included the dropbear ssh server from the kobohack package.
So what are all these items:
- firmware (thread): the basic software of the device, shipped by Kobo company
- Metazoa firmware patches (thread): fix some layout options and functionalities, see below for details.
- Kobo Start Menu (V07, update 4 thread): a menu that pops up before the reading software (nickel) starts, which allows to start alternative readers (like koreader) etc.
- KOreader (koreader-nightly-20150808, thread): an alternative document reader that supports epub, azw, pdf, djvu and many more
- pbchess and CoolReader (2015.7, thread): a chess program and another alternative reader, bundled together with several other games
- kobohack (web site): I only use the ssh server
- ssh access (old post: makes a full computer from your device by allowing you to log into it via ssh
- custom dictionaries (thread): this fix updates dictionaries from the folder customdicts to the Kobo dictionary folder. For creating your own Japanese-English dictionary, see this blog entry
- side-loaded fonts: GentiumBasic and GentiumBookBasic, Verdana, DroidSerif, and Charter-eInk
Warning: Sideloading or crossloading the incorrect firmware can break/brick your device. The link below is for Kobo GloHD ONLY.
The first step is to update the Kobo to the latest firmware. This can easily be done by just getting the latest firmware (thread, direct link for Kobo 3.17.0 for GloHD) and unpacking the zip file into the .kobo directory on your device. Eject and enjoy the updating procedure.
Get the combined Kobo-3.17.0-combined/KoboRoot.tgz and put it into the .kobo directory, then eject and enjoy the updating procedure again.
After this the device should reboot and you will be kicked into KSM, from where after some time of waiting Nickel will be started. If you consider the fonts too small, select Configure, then the General, and add item, then select kobomenuFontsize=55 and save.
Remarks to some of the items included
The full list of included things is above, here are only some notes about what specific I have done.
- Metazoa firmware patches
I have included the experimental sickel patch to extend the waiting time until sickel reboots your device.
The patches I have enabled in this build are:
- libadobe.so.patch: none
- librmsdk.so.1.0.0.patch: default (‘Fix page breaks bug’, ‘Default ePub monospace font (Courier)’)
- libnickel.so.1.0.0.patch: ‘Custom reading footer style’, ‘My 15 line spacing values’, ‘Custom left & right margins’, ‘Brightness fine control’, ‘Search in Library by default’, ‘Disable pinch-to-zoom font resizing’
- sickel.patch: default (‘SickelService::Ping() timer’, ‘SickelService::Resume() timer’, ‘SickelService::SickelService() timer’)
If you need any other patches, you need to do the patching yourself.
Kobohack (latest version 20150110) originally provided updated libraries and optimizations, but unfortunately it is now completely outdated and using it is not recommended for the library part. I only include the ssh server (dropbear) so that connections to the Kobo via ssh.
- ssh fixes
See the detailed instructions here, the necessary files are already included in the mega upload. It updates the /etc/inittab to run also /etc/init.d/rcS2, and this one again starts the inetd server and run user supplied commands in /mnt/onboard/run.sh which is where your documents are.
- Custom dictionaries
The necessary directories and scripts are already included in the above combined KoboRoot.tgz, so nothing to be done but dropping updated, fixed, changed dictionaries into your Kobo root into the directory customdict. After this you need to reboot to get the actual dictionaries updated. See this thread for more information. The adaptions and script mentioned in this post are included in the mega update.
After installing this patch, you need to fix the password for root and disable telnet. This is an important step, here are the steps you have to take (taken from this old post):
- Turn on Wifi on the Kobo and find IP address
Go to Settings – Connect and after this is done, go to Settings – Device Information where you will see something like
IP Address: 192.168.1.NN
- telnet into your device
it will ask you the user name, enter “root” (without the quotes) and no password
- (ON THE GLO) change home directory of root
edit /etc/passwd with vi and change the entry for root by changing the 6th field from: “/” to “/root” (without the quotes). After this procedure the line should look like
don’t forget to save the file
- (ON THE GLO) create ssh keys for dropbear
[root@(none) ~]# mkdir /etc/dropbear
[root@(none) ~]# cd /etc/dropbear
[root@(none) ~]# dropbearkey -t dss -f dropbear_dss_host_key
[root@(none) ~]# dropbearkey -t rsa -f dropbear_rsa_host_key
- (ON YOUR PERSONAL COMPUTER) check that you can log in with ssh
You should get dropped into your device again
- (ON THE GLO) log out of the telnet session (the first one you did)
[root@(none) ~]# exit
- (ON THE GLO) in your ssh session, change the password of root
[root@(none) ~]# passwd
you will have to enter the new password two times. Remember it well, you will not be easily able to recover it without opening your device.
- (ON THE GLO) disable telnet login
edit the file /etc/inetd.conf.local on the GLO (using vi) and remove the telnet line (the line starting with 23).
- restart your device
The combined KoboRoot.tgz is provided without warranty. If you need to reset your device, don’t blame me!