Webtop may be on its way to the grave, but many still enjoy the technology. It was a unique idea that set Motorola apart from the competition. It’s just too bad they didn’t do much else right. For Motorola Atrix 4G users running certain custom ROMs, Webtop is now not only attainable, but Google Now right along with it.
XDA Forum Member Rhadamg has posted a zip that enables Webtop, Google Now, and many other Google-related goodies without too much of a hassle. Unfortunately, it only works for certain ROMs at the moment. The Google Now functionality comes from previous efforts lead by XDA Senior Member cajunflavoredbob.
The installation method is pretty easy—simply flash in recovery. Reports on the mod’s functionality are mixed. For some, it is working perfectly, while others are experiencing issues. Common issues include force closes, web dock incompatibilities, and other buggy behavior. Some of this has been attributed to the fact this is still an early release of the project. The rest is attributed to bugs already present within Webtop. Future releases should have many of these issues ironed out.
For additional details, download links, and more, check out the original thread.
September 29, 2012 By: Joseph Hindy
Many of us have been battling battery life issues for as long as we’ve owned smartphones. Time and time and time again, we’ve brought you news on dealing with random battery problems or unexpected power drains. The Motorola Atrix 4G is among the devices with known battery issues, but its fix has been finalized.
The issue is that the battery percentage meter can become incorrectly calibrated. XDA Senior Member ravilov had been working on the battery issue for a bit, and has thankfully crafted a fix. In his own words:
Like many other people, I too am affected by the dreaded “won’t charge beyond xx%” battery bug. I know in reality this is probably of little importance since (at least in my case) the battery is getting decent charge and lasts long enough anyway. But I would still like to see it fully charged, at least every so often.
So I did the procedure mentioned in this thread and it worked, but only once – the bug would appear again on the next charge cycle. Then I found this post and tried that too, and it also worked but also only once. So I decided to make this little app.
What the app does is, upon getting notified that the charger has been connected, it will automatically delete files in /data/battd (all except uid - namely cc_data, cc_data_old and powerup). Then all you have to do is wait for the battery to charge as far as it goes and then reboot (and then possibly charge a little more). That’s it!
NOTE 1: Obviously for the app to work correctly your phone needs to be rooted.
NOTE 2: This app will not increase your battery life or change it in any way, shape or form. All it does is attempt to fix the percentage display.
Now admittedly, it can get annoying if you connect your phone to the computer just to transfer some files and the app gets triggered anyway because it detected charging. That’s why the auto-triggering can also be disabled in the app. You can also leave it permanently disabled and just use the “force calibration” button to calibrate your battery only when you feel like it.
Anyway, I hope the app will be useful at least to some. The app should work on all rooted GB ROMs and possibly on ICS and JB too.
While the final version was mostly just cosmetic changes, the several releases that pre-date it brought a lot to help fix the issue. These features include:
instead of running hardcoded shell commands, now runs external shell scripts in the app’s datadir (so you can modify the scripts to your own liking)
all shell commands/scripts are now executed through busybox instead of default system shell (so busybox is now required)
separated fixing the battd datafiles (which is normally needed every so often) from fixing battd permissions and ownership (which should be needed only once)
cleanup and other improvements
In order to use the fix, simply install the app on your rooted device like you would any other APK. For more details on the bug and the fix, check out the original thread.
May 16, 2012 By: Joseph Hindy
Let us all let out a collective sigh as Motorola continues to publicly hate on all of their rooted users. We’ve already brought you coverage of the shady Motorola practice of giving out Atrix 4G handsets that cannot be unlocked. Now the time is coming for the Motorola Photon 4G as well. The dual-core Motorola device, which also happens to be the only dual-core Motorola device on Sprint, has an update coming up that will lock the bootloaders and prevent the flashing of SBF files. While this likely won’t affect the current rooted community, new devices and replacements will likely come with this update preinstalled.
XDA Senior Member Lightsword1942, who was nice enough to tip us off about Motorola’s continued campaign against unlocking bootloaders, has also posted a thread that details the Photon bootloader, and has begun the all too familiar process of making prior unlocking methods work on the bootloader. It’s been determined that when attempting to flash an SBF file to downgrade to an older bootloader in an attempt to make the bootloader unlockable once again, the SBF checks out the ReservedOdm values. If these values do not match up, the SBF fails much in a similar fashion as the Atrix 4G. If these values can be bypassed, it very well may be possible to downgrade these devices and unlock the bootloader once more. For the time being, though, Motorola has everyone stymied.
While campaigns to get Motorola to understand the enthusiast community in past have failed, do not let that stop you from letting them know what you think. If you feel the need to tell Motorola that you should do what you want with your phone, it may be wise to start on their Facebook and Twitter pages. Don’t forget to use the #unlockmoto hashtag if you do. Hey, it eventually worked for HTC users…kind of.
For additional info about the Motorola Photon 4G problem, you can find it in the Photon 4G thread and if you’re looking for more info about the Atrix 4G problem, you can find it in our original article.
May 15, 2012 By: Joseph Hindy
We know what you’re thinking. Oh no, not again, right? Very recently, the newest generation of the Motorola Atrix 4G, whether they be given out as replacements for older models or being sold brand new, has lost the ability to flash SBF files and, thus, the ability to unlock its bootloader.
For those unfamiliar with SBF files, they’re much like Motorola’s version of the HTC RUU or an ODIN-flashable file on Samsung devices. They can serve as vectors for stock firmware revisions. Losing the ability to flash SBF files is like HTC users booting into the bootloader and trying to flash an RUU, only to find skateboarding Androids giving you the collective middle finger. In the world of Samsung devices, it would be as if ODIN simply laughed at you. This is the problem that Motorola Atrix 4G users are facing right now. XDA Forum Member das8nt has created a thread to explain what’s going on and why it’s happening. Hopefully there will eventually be a fix. In his words:
So, I don’t mean to start a panic for the remaining Atrix faithful here, but it seems like Motorola has started to block the ability to flash SBF’s, including the pudding/IHOP files, on New and replacement Atrix phones. I’ve been in discussions with at least three recipients of replacement devices over the last three days that all have the same issue.
Anytime any SBF file is flashed to the device it fails with the error SFV:106:1:2 Unable to reenumerate device (or something similar). It does not put you into fastboot or give you the options it used to, you simply have to battery pull and the phone boots normally as if nothing ever happened. Even the current version SBF for AT&T (4.5.141) will not flash to the phone; it ends in the same error.
Not being able to flash SBF files means that users cannot return to stock. Furthermore, it means that the bootloader cannot be unlocked on these devices. In other words, this is a giant roadblock for those who would prefer to run a custom ROM and are now locked out of to an even greater degree.
You’d think that being acquired by the company that created Android would give Motorola a sizable competitive edge. It certainly wouldn’t be outside the realm of reality to believe that since Google pioneered the Android Open Source Project, this would encourage Motorola to open the doors and let their users do what they want on their devices. But this is the real world, where things don’t always make sense. Good job Motorola, you’ve once again alienated your fan base. Granted, the root community is a small fraction of the overall Android user base, but we all know how to use Twitter and Facebook. Haven’t you had enough spam posted on the walls of your social media outlets? I guess not.
For additional information, hit up the original thread. There you’ll learn the symptoms of being locked out of your phone and find additional discussion regarding the topic.
May 13, 2012 By: Joseph Hindy
Dual booting on the Motorola Atrix 4G has been quite the ordeal for many users. Although there have been multiple attempts, the path towards a working dual boot solution has been a little more difficult for the Atrix. Actually, until a few days ago, developers couldn’t get dual booting working on the Atrix 4G at all. However, with patience and time comes a solution to all problems. And for users of the Atrix 4G, dual booting has been solved.
The first version was released by XDA Forum Member sendust7. It’s a very complex process, so anyone who wants to attempt it should be extra careful and read the instructions repeatedly. The original method requires users to use Linux—preferably Ubuntu—and runs them through the rings of getting the SD card properly partitioned, and getting two ROMs installed without breaking any features such as the camera or WebTop. This allows for the free use of dual boot without breaking anything, and that’s just a real win.
As if that weren’t enough, a couple of days later XDA Senior Member hateful17 was able to port the Linux method to Windows, so now users of both OSes can get in on the action. The Windows version is much like the Ubuntu version, except a little more complicated. Users will have to get a bunch of stuff done before they can dual boot, but the steps essentially remain the same. Neither method is for the faint of heart. Both processes are lengthy, and involve a lot of command line and ADB usage. So be sure you know what you’re doing before preceding.
With both of these methods being released, the Atrix 4G has been given a new lease on life, as users can now put multiple ROMs on their devices without breaking anything. Eventually, there may be easier methods, but for now the Atrix 4G community can at least get it done.
May 3, 2012 By: Joseph Hindy
When the Motorola Atrix 4G was first released, it featured an innovative WebTop platform that allowed users to connect their devices to bigger screens and do all kinds of fun stuff. Since then, WebTop has been hacked, modified, adn improved by the relentless developers here on XDA. However, it appears as if the end of the line is coming soon for WebTop.
XDA Forum Member Gendol has posted a thread containing GenTop2, which is one of the best Linux-based WebTop replacements available. With full support and plenty of modifications, GenTop2 has a lot going for it.
The installation process takes place almost exclusively in ADB, so users who aren’t familiar should read the instructions thoroughly before attempting. The process involves swapping the original WebTop platform with a full-fledged Gentoo Linux replacement. So, why should users of the Atrix 4G check this out? Because it’s incredibly cool. Of course, Gendol shares some other reasons why users might prefer GenTop2 over WebTop:
Programs are fully optimized for the ARMv7a CPU contained in the Atrix.
Thus the whole system is faster and more responsive.
No shackles put around the WebTop by Motorola.
You can install any program (which compiles on ARM).
All software (except X11) is fully up-to-date.
You remember old times with desktop computers having far slower CPUs and less RAM than your phone and you wonder what you can do with this pocket computer.
So besides a more open, shackle-free experience, there are a lot of fun features of using this instead of the included WebTop. Of course, there is a downside as well:
Gentoo is huge because it must install all development files.
The system and all programs must be compiled on the phone. How crazy is that?
Firefox could not be built. But, there is a smaller replacement.
Why bother using a phone, when you already have a notebook?
So if you must have FireFox or if you worry about your storage, you may want to avoid this. However, a few extra hundred MB to get Gentoo running on the Atrix 4G is a more than reasonable sacrifice.
If this looks like something you want to do, hit up the original thread where you’ll find, literally, everything you need to know about installing this on your Atrix 4G.
When it comes to Android, options are everything. That’s one of the big pluses to owning an Android phone. You can root it if you want, flash whatever ROM/theme/kernel combination that you please. In some cases you can even take your CDMA device to a different carrier. There is no other mobile platform with that level of sharing and options. And now for the Motorola Atrix 4G, the options just keep coming.
XDA Recognized Developer jokersax11 has created a ROM that gives Atrix owners enough choices to satisfy any flasher—for a while anyway. It’s called Kitchen Sink and it lets users choose from a variety of base ROMs such as CyanogenMod and AOKP. Once users choose their ROM, they can then customize their installation as they see fit.
Kitchen Sink is an alpha release right now, so expect there to be a few bumps and bruises. The number of choices are really quite extensive, and cover several full ROMs with options for each one. A few of the options include:
Full cm9 option
Full miui option
Various boot animations
Couple camera apps
Range of fonts
Custom regional GPS files
2 2d lib sets
Google maps selectable with street view
3 music apps
3 keyboard options
2 tts options
Much much more coming.
Still under active development, Kitchen Sink helps usher in a new era of end-user versatility and ROM customization. For more information, download links, a full feature list, and change log, head on over to the original thread.
The ever popular Fruitcake Maker also known as ROM Factory has been quietly making its rounds around XDA over the last several months, and as it’s been gaining momentum as a fun and useful tool for devs and users alike. However, it was only a matter of time before this tool starting hitting bigger and better phones. XDA Senior Member samcripp, creator of ROM Factory, has been bringing the application to new devices,the popular Motorola Atrix 4G and the Samsung Galaxy S II I9100.
For those who don’t know what ROM Factory is, it is an application that will take the /boot and /system partitions on your phone and create a perfectly functional, fully flashable update.zip out of them. There are a million and one uses for a tool like this, and users and devs alike are grounded by nothing more than their imagination, but the obvious two that come to mind are helping with ROM development and creating flashable backups.
Because the tool basically takes a copy of the /system partition, any modifications such as themes or tweaks are copied as well so developers can actually mod their ROM and then just use the ROM Factory to pump out a ROM with all the needed tweaks, ready for immediate flashing. Similarly, once a user gets their ROM customized how they like it, they are only a couple of clicks away from making it ready to re-flash at any time. Pure win.
March 4, 2012 By: Joseph Hindy
One of the greatest attributes of cross-platform ROMs such as CyanogenMod is that modifications can be used on most phones that run the release. Things like theme chooser and CyanogenMod Settings change very little, if at all, regardless of target device. The same holds true for many other CyanogenMod modifications as well.
XDA Senior Member rickriego has posted a method for CyanogenMod 9 users toting the Motorola Atrix 4G that will not only place the clock in the middle of the status bar, but bring several other features—a couple of which are fully configurable—to the CM9 experience.
- Centered clock
- Modified notifications layout
- Tab for quick toggles (fully configurable from CM9 settings)
- Brightness control (make sure you toggle off auto brightness for this to work)
- Transparent statusbar (might be removed next version if this affects performance)
This modification brings a little pizzazz to an otherwise ordinary Android notification bar. Additionally, since it is a modification for a CyanogenMod 9 ROM, there’s a good chance that this modification can be used on other devices with CM9. While there is no list of these devices, anyone who’s reading this who has a CM9-powered device could give it a try. Of course, make a backup before you do, just in case something goes wrong.
For anyone wanting to check out the mod, you can find some additional info in the Atrix thread and the full mod details and download links in the Galaxy Nexus thread. It should be noted that Atrix users will have to extract the apk from the .zip file to use it, and likely anyone not running a Galaxy Nexus will have to as well.
For those of us who don’t have tablets, we often find ourselves envious of those who do have tablets. The giant screen, the extra features and the slick user interfaces, to name a few. Sometimes, it’s a little fun to grab up a tablet-like feature just to feel the love.
The mod is pretty simple to apply compared to some. It involves overwriting a services.jar file and a couple of build.prop tweaks, then reboot and your home screen should bear a striking resemblance to an Android Tablet. It should help lessen the jealousy, at least. Getting back is no big deal either, as AndroidON explains:
So, If you want to get back,
just change your density to 240 and it will revert to phone UI.
We need reboot between UI change now,
but maybe devs can do some mod after CM9 have all feature
So if you’re looking to add some tablet UI goodness to your Atrix, you can find the proper files and instructions in the original thread. Don’t forget to make a backup, though, just in case something goes awry.
The Motorola Atrix 4g has been able to stay pretty recent with development, already having a couple of CyanogenMod7 ports and updated ROMs with the stock firmware.
To help keep up with the latest and greatest, XDA Senior Member jokersax11 has brought a port of CyanogenMod9 for those carrying the Atrix 4g. The ROM is pretty stable, with only a few things missing from being perfect. Here’s a list of things that aren’t working:
Adobe flash issues- either adobes fault or 2d issues fault
Car dock-missing apk
Some 2d issues, mostly works
Built in video playback- use 3rd party for now as its driver related
The list of things that are working is much longer and these problems aren’t the worst out there so people who would like to run this as a daily driver could do so if they can look passed the issues. Also, based on the updates, it appears as though jokersax11 will be sticking with it til everything is working perfectly so for those who aren’t ready to flash this yet, keep an eye out on the original thread for updates, download links and additional information.
Atrix 4G owners out there will be interested to hear that rDesktop 1.7.0 is available by XDA forum member FallenAngelUK.
rDesktop is a terminal services client for Linux, which allows you to connect to a terminal services session of any Windows machine with Remote Desktop enabled.
This is a newer release of rDesktop than what is available in the Debian repos.
In order to use the client, you’ll need access to a terminal from WebTop and a small amount of Linux shell knowledge.
The XDA dev has posted that this has been invaluable for getting onto his desktop and servers at work, so please post any feedback in the application thread. Full details on how to use rDesktop are in the same thread.