so i hacked my palm pre…. and other pre related ramblings…

pic_pre_itselfi got my pre this past sunday. ive been playing with it quite a bit.

it took me a little while (i’d say about 1 day..heh) to let go of the raw dog mentality that i had developed using my severely modded/hax0red windows mobile phones for so long….  and embrace the new skool tech rounded shiny buttons and gradiant web 2.0 phoneness that the Palm Pre represents …. u know, like going from a linux console (think tech guy “in the black screen thing with text flying everwyhere”) vs using Mac OS X.   but i am sold on it.

every day i use it, there is a eureka moment…. and i fall further in love.  it just takes something small… like performing some basic task and feeling some synergy with the design of the device.

for example, when i was in the middle of writing an email .. and i needed to go reference a web page, and a text message, to finish what i was writing…. well, a couple flicks of my finger and i had 3 windows (“cards”, as they call them on the Palm Luna UI) opened up .. and i was switching back and forth while typing out the rest of my email….
and that’s when i just felt this surge of joy.
Ahhhhh, so this is why i choose this device over the iphone.
“i get it.”    “this really was designed for me, and what i’m doing and how i do it.”   <— that is the moment of success right there.. when you design something properly.


Anyways, so last night. i totally hacked that shizzle.


first i started with the contra code…. “upupdowndownleftrightleftrightabstart” yes that one to get like 32 lives in contra on NES.  you type that into your pre at the home screen/launcher, i.e. to bring up the universal search.  as soon as you hit the last “t” on the end it will bring up a nice purty icon.

then after that , well, to put it plainly it was  just like the movies…. black screen on my computer with text flying everywhere, hexadecimal codes, and then …..
“WE’RE IN!!!!” , to be more technical about it.. basically you install the novacom driver from the leaked palm pre image .jar out there, and then run a python script that seems to do a buffer overflow with running /sbin/telnetd as its payloadthen u login as root and install a backdoor to let u get in after that.

in my case i setup an /opt folder that is mounted read/write and a self contained install of ipkg lives in there, pointing to a repo with all the packages set up for /opt… that way nothing touches the Palm OEM stuff and any self installed hax0ring lives in its own self contained space.

this is a good site to help get u started:

i would speculate that allowing this hacking of their devices is an unofficial strategy for Palm.  if not, they should think about it.  it does good things for them.


pic_pre_rooted2so far , i have patched the javascript code for the Palm PDF reader to add support for landscape mode (i.e. the accelerometer stuff).  The really cool thing about the Pre is that all the standard apps are just HTML/CSS/JavaScript.  I even saw some prototype.js/ in there (too bad it isnt jquery;) but i guess they started this project a little while ago).

really, noinc + creating palm pre apps is just a natural fit.  we coded the frickin’ arabic palmOS for chrissake.  its in our blood. :)   and now PALM = LINUX plus a bunch of XHTML/CSS/JavaScript…. i mean how much better a match can you get?????

One Response to “so i hacked my palm pre…. and other pre related ramblings…”

  1. Isaac says:

    Hey! Nice job! Would you remind releasing a diff for the changes you made to the PDF application. I was considering hacking in landscape mode too but you beat me to it!

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