Nexus 7 Downgrade or Upgrade?

nexus-7-2

Do you own a Nexus 7 2012 or 2013 edition? Did you take the plunge from Kit Kat to Lollipop and find the experience surprisingly underwhelming? Did your tablet thank you by becoming a useless, sluggish mess? Well if your nodding your head, then you’ll either be happy or sad to discovered your not alone. For Christmas 2013, I bought my girlfriend a new Nexus 7 (2012 edition), which she was excited about having. She hadn’t been expecting a tablet, but in the months that followed she found more then a few uses for it. From reading comics, browsing Pinterest and storing cooking recipes. The Nexus 7 was lightening fast compared to her mobile, combined with the large screen it meant her laptop hardly got used. But this wonderful friendship was sadly going to end abruptly one evening, when the tablet informed her there was a system update available. The update in question was for Android 5.0 also known as Lollipop. Trusting Google, she allowed the tablet to update and in the days that follow slowly came to regret the decision. Her once nippy Nexus 7 was performing as well as a three legged, blind horse in the grand national.

Not everyone like Lollipo

Not everyone likes Lollipop

When things break, I’m usually the one my family and friends go to for tech support. Just because I know how to turn on a multimeter, they seem to think I know what I’m doing, those crazy fools! lol

A quick look at the lethargic tablet had me wondering if the cache needed cleaning out. In recent years Android has improved a lot, but anyone who remembers cheap Android 2.2 tablets from China. Will recalled the monthly cache wipes required to keep the system usable. Looking online I found other people had the same idea, but with mixed success. Almost all the articles & posts that I read were adamant that the upgrade was breaking their tablets. Slowing down the performance, causing reboots and random force closes. As one might expect, after wiping the cache, things didn’t improve much. The tablet stabilised slightly, but continued to reboot at random times and perform terribly. The conclusion? the Nexus 7 needed rolling back to KitKat. While it was a software downgrade, it would be a performance upgrade. After putting the rollback off for 6 months in the hope Google would sort out the problem and release a bug fix. One has sadly not been forth coming and it seems like Google have move on and abandoned the Nexus 7 community. As a techie I can tell you that computer hardware has a short shelf life, products are superseded in a very short space of time. But even with that in mind, users of the 2013 Nexus 7 were not spared from the slow down problems that came from the 2014 Lollipop update.

Many users have rolled back their tablets to 4.4 (KitKat) and reported it restores the devices performance and battery life. So as it seems we’re left to fend for ourselves, I decided to bite the bullet and perform the hairy task of downgrading the tablet. I’m not usually prone to feeling nervous when working on hardware, but when its not my own, I become more aware of the risk I’m taking in fiddling. You can following instructions to the letter and still ended up with a bricked tablet. And sometimes means replacing the main board just resuscitate it!

The guide I found useful was this one, written by Kris Carlon.

www.androidpit.com/how-to-downgrade-a-nexus

The guide is pretty straight forward, however one of the steps did trip me up. So while your here at BMV, I’ll walk you through what I did.

(Warning this guide could brick your device if not followed properly. It is intended for intermediate users, with some knowledge of the command prompt. If your not familiar with flashing devices, ByteMyVdu HIGHLY recommends seeking out a nerd or a friend who looks as if they know what they’re doing. If things go wibbly wobbly, it’s not my fault!)

You may need to install “7-Zip” so that your computer can unpack the files in guide below.

1.
The first thing we are going to need is a restore image, thankfully Google offer these on their website for anyone to download. Now pay attention for this part, you need to download the file specific to your device. A Nexus 7 (2012) image will probably brick a later 2013 model or at the very least disable its onboard camera. The list is fairly straight forward, as I was flashing a 2012 edition, I scrolled down to “`nakasi’ for Nexus 7 (Wi-Fi)” and selected the last release of Kitkat (4.4.4).

Available at

(https://dl.google.com/dl/android/aosp/nakasi-ktu84p-factory-2c6e4d6f.tgz)

If you have 2013 model scroll further up the page and choose the file for suitable for your device, Wi-Fi or Mobile.

Assuming you have successfully downloaded the image file to your computer, we will begin the process of preparing your tablet for the rollback.

2.
You will need some software to enable your computer to communicate with the tablet. So download the ADB tools from:
(http://files.androidpit.info/content/adb-tools_treiber.zip)
Once it is downloaded unpack the archive to your hard drive. I find the easiest place is the root of “C:”. So you should now have a folder called “adb tools”, lets locate the factory image you downloaded earlier and unpack it to the “adb tools” folder you just created.

3.
If you look inside the “adb-tools” folder you should find a single file with the extension *.tar, this is another archive, so use 7-Zip to unpack it to the current directory (see fig.1)

Fig 1

Fig 1

4.
Assuming your device is switched on, we need to make sure USB Debugging is enabled. You can do this by going in to the settings of your tablet ‘Settings > Developers Options’. Make sure USB Debugging is enabled. If you don’t have Developers Options listed in your settings menu, you will need to enable it. This is pretty easy to do, simply go to ‘About Phone’ and tap the ‘Build Number’ repeatedly until a notification appears.

5.

Fig 1.2

Fig 1.2

Unless you have already done so, you will need to unlock the bootloader of your tablet so that it will accept the update. First turn off your Nexus 7. Then Press and hold the Volume Down and Power button to enter the Fastboot menu (fig 1.2). Connect your tablet to your computer via a USB cable.

Now open a Command Prompt via the Start Menu, clicking Run and entering ‘CMD’. Navigate to the ‘adb-tools’ folder on your hard drive, you need to be in the directory that has the ‘adb.exe’ and ‘fastboot.exe’ files. From within this directory, execute the following command to unlock the bootloader.

fastboot oem unlock

Press the Volume Up button to accept the command and press the Power button to confirm. The bootloader will now be unlocked.

Now as I already warned you, if you haven’t made a backup of your data, do so now as it is your last chance. If your all set and ready to go, then let us proceed.

6.

Turn off your Nexus tablet, then press and hold the Volume Down button and the Power button to enter fastboot mode. You should once again see the Android laid on its back (fig.1.2).

7.
This is the part of the original guide I tripped up on, as it instructs you to press the Volume Up button and enter Recovery Mode. This did not work for me, perhaps because my tablet is using the stock recovery. While still on the fastboot screen (fig 1.2). Connect your Nexus tablet to your computer using your USB cable.

8.

Fig 1.3

Fig 1.3

Now on your computer, navigate to the ‘adb-tools’ folder, find the unpacked folder containing the factory image you downloaded. You should see a file called ‘flash-all.bat’ inside the folder (fig 1.3). These files need to be in the same directory as the ‘adb.exe’ and ‘fastboot.exe’, otherwise they will not run properly. So copy and paste them into the same directory (fig 1.4)

Fig 1.4

Fig 1.4

10.


With that done, double click the file ‘flash-all.bat’, your computer will now proceed to flash KitKat to your tablet. DO NOT touch your computer or tablet while this is happening as it may brick your tablet.

When the process is over, your tablet should reboot and begin loading Kitkat. Go through the setup and restore your files and enjoy a snappier tablet!

Until next time, keep on geeking!

Enjoy KitKat

Enjoy KitKat

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S9920 Star Alps Update

The procedure described below could cause unrecoverable damage to the s9920, by proceeding you are accepting full responsibility for any damage, loss of limbs, exploding sheep that might occur. In other words don’t blame me if it doesn’t work!


s9920

S9920 Repair Update

A while ago I wrote an article regarding S9920 handset, covering some of the short comings of the S3 Mini clone. I have to say since I writing that article, I have received messages from several of you. Many asking if I had figured out how to fix the phone and where to source spare parts. Sadly I wasn’t able to offer much help. Aside from a few threads regarding rom’s, there isn’t all that much on-line covering this device.

After writing the article, not much has happened. The phone has sat in my desk drawer awaiting its fate.

So what has changed you ask? Well recently I did a little on-line research, to find out whether anyone had figured out a way to resolve the problems with the S9920. Namely the ghost touching, which almost renders the device useless as a phone. As it transpires, there might actually now be a fix.

The information I found wasn’t posted one any forum, nor was it that easy to find. In fact when I came to write this article, it took me almost 30 minutes of retracing my steps before I found the original source. So if you’ve been looking recently and not found anything, seriously don’t be kicking yourself, it’s easily done.

The original author of the fix, user “Speedylaci”. Believed the fault with the touch screen resided in the cable connecting it to the logic board. More specifically two solder points, which they believe are weak and causing a bad connection. They suggest disassembling the device and reflowing the two points. Other posts I have read suggest using a small amount of glue to fix the digitisers connector down on to the logic board. After some users observed the connector comes off too easy and could contribute to the digitisers odd behavior.

If you have not performed or read about the fix previously described on ByteMyVdu, now might be as good a time as any to check out the following link and familiarise yourself with it. Needless to say the fix outlined in the aforementioned article did not solve my problems. So reading about another possible means to fix came as welcome news. Better still that it is a very easy repair to perform.

s9920-connectors

Fig.1

Following the instructions from my previous article, unscrew and remove the back panel of the phone. This should now leave you with the PCB and camera module exposed (see fig 1). Above the power button you should see a small cable connected to the motherboard, this is the connector for the LCD which needs securing in place. It is up to you how you do this, some people have used glue, others adhesive tape. If you decide to use glue, keep in mind that too much could irreparably damage the phone. The last thing you want to do is gum up the connector and prevent it from making a circuit. A little glue on the outside between the connector and the cable should be fine. Leave it to dry before re-assembling the device.

With a little luck this might improve the digitisers performance, it certainly can’t make it any worse. My handset had been sitting in my desk drawer for over 6 months, so I didn’t care whether it worked or broke the phone even more. The fact is I’d written off the S9920 long ago, so bricking the phone really didn’t worry me. If this is something you’d rather avoid, then I suggest you don’t perform the procedure above. Having performed the fix on my handset, I sadly can’t tell you if it solved my problems or not. The screen has not acted up since doing the repair, but given that the fault occurs randomly, only time will tell.

 

Keep on Geeking!

 

Ref:  http://www.needrom.com/mobile/star-s9920-official-rom/comment-page-3/#comments


Star / Alps S9920 Screen Repair

Is Your Phone Acting Up?

s9920A week ago I wrote a review of the Alps / Star S9920, in which I highlighted some of the highs and lows of buying this popular S3 mini clone. Shortly after after writing the article I began receiving messages from fellow S9920 owners, who were also struggling with their devices. While I still don’t have a solution to all the problems that have been put to me (and I did look) there just isn’t that much documented on the S9920. This isn’t much of a surprise, when you think of the number of phones that come out of China. Unlike major brands such as Samsung, HTC or Apple, Alps constitute but a footnote in the Android device market.

In this article, I’ll try to address one of the main issues experienced by users of the S9920: ghost touching. It manifests itself in the form of icons randomly selecting themselves without the screen ever being touched. This fix may also help with some of the other problems associated with the digitizer / screen on the S9920.

Before we begin, I must stress that this is a very tricky fix and requires you have a steady hand for soldering. I would only recommend you attempt this fix after exhausting all other avenues. Make a mistake and you could very well damage your phone beyond repair. Know that you do this at your own risk, and I cannot be held responsible if you kill your phone. With the disclaimer out of the way, let us continue.

The Phone Blues

A month after receiving my phone, the tell tale signs that something wasn’t quite right, began to emerge. Sometimes I would pick up my phone and the screen would not register my finger swiping the screen, while on other occasions the phone would act as if it had been possessed, randomly opening apps, usually located at the bottom right of the screen, close to the back button. The only way I found to make it stop, was to place the phone on a flat surface and run a finger firmly across the screen, directly over where the back button icon is located.
A few minutes doing this and the phone usually would begin to act normally. However these bouts of the ‘crazies’ were becoming ever more frequent, making the phone very unreliable for daily use. After contacting Dracotek, the company I bought the phone from. I explained the problem I was having with the phone and their representative kindly offered to replace the faulty handset. This really is a Chinese company with good customer support, in fact the best I have encountered. Generous as the offer was, after reading all the articles I could about the S9920, I realised that a replacement would only delay the inevitable, as the S9920 clearly has an inherent flaw in regard to the touch screen. After making sure I had a back up phone, I decided to try out a suggestion I found online while reading up on the S9920. This involved carefully disassembling the phone, detaching the screen and removing the motherboard. Then, with a fine tip soldering iron, reflowing several points on the rear of the board. Without any photos to go on, this possible repair was really a shot in the dark, but I decided I to give it a go.

Things you will need:

To perform this fix you will require:

1x 25watt soldering iron

1x Set of Phillips screwdrivers

1x Small flat screw driver or plastic separating tool, as used in opening iPods

Disassembling your S9920

First make sure your phone is turned off, then remove the back cover and the battery, place them to one side. Next using a small Phillips screwdriver, remove the eight screws from the rear of the phone. The bottom right screw is covered with a white sticker. By breaking this you will void the warranty of your device, which means you won’t be able to return your phone, so be certain that you wish to continue.

With the screws removed, pick up the phone and examine the edge. You should see a series of small slots, this is where you will need your small flat headed screwdriver. Start by inserting it into these slots and gently prying the plastic apart.s9920-screwdriver3 The back and front of the phone should gradually come apart. With the back removed, carefully unclip the two connectors indicated in the photo. s9920-connectorsThese are for LCD screen and front facing camera. Before you go lifting out the motherboard, you will need to un-stick the power and volume buttons. First remove the plastic buttons that cover them. Underneath these are the switches, held in place with sticky back tape. Using a flat blade screwdriver, pry them away from the case. Remember be careful, replacement parts for the S9920 are scarce on the ground. Once you have them unstuck, lift the board up and away from the front case. You should now have the three parts of the phone laid out in front of you. s9920-threeparts copyThe black rear shell, logic board and front case, which includes the LCD screen (See picture). Don’t lose the plastic home button, located at the bottom of the front case. Turn the logic board over so it looks like it does in the picture above. Now gently remove the yellow tape covering the solder points. There should be one large square at the top of the board and a smaller one at the bottom for the hardware button.

A steady hand will be needed for the next part. Using a fine tipped soldering iron, heat up the contacts you uncovered from under the tape and ONLY those. Don’t spend too long with the iron on the board, you only need to warm up the solder enough for it to reflow. You should be able to see it happen. The solder will visibly change in appearance, becoming shiny. s9920-contacts copyThe contacts pictured above are very fine and tricky, take your time and try not to rush. Once you have done these, finish off by reflowing the contacts you uncovered on the bottom half of the board.

*Additional note: After I reflowed all the contacts, I took a Stanley knife and scored the board between the tracks, just to eliminate the chances of bridges between the lines. You can do this as well if you wish, simply use a sharp blade and run it down between the contacts your have reflowed. Make sure you do not score the brown ribbon cable, it is fragile and will not react well to sharp blades.

Before you reassemble the phone, take a look at the board containing the hardware buttons (see picture). On my S9920 this narrow board was not sitting level, which meant it was not aligned well with the front case. s9920-hwbuttonsThis could easily have attributed to the problems I was having with the back button. The board is stuck down with double sided tape, but can be lifted off by sliding a something under it. Apply a little pressure with a flat bladed screw driver or Stanley knife, be careful as the board does flex and you do not want to snap it. Once it is unstuck, carefully reposition it and press it down, the tape will keep it in place. You can see how mine was slanted in the photo.

Well done! You have done the fix and hopefully your phone should behave a little better. Now you can carefully begin reassembling your phone. You can do this simply by reversing the process of taking it apart. Remember to be careful of the screen and camera cables as well as the volume and power buttons. Remember to place the home button back in the front case before you replace the motherboard.

Update 

So it has now been five days since I took my S9920 apart in a last ditched effort to get the phone performing properly, specifically the screen. I’m happy to report the repair seems to have worked! So if your screen is acting up as described above, this fix might and I must emphasis might! Restore your phone to normality. I was dubious as to whether reflowing the contacts have any effect, but it has. I can only conclude the traces on the board are simply not very good or perhaps scoring the board as I did, isolated the tracks and stopped any bridging that might have been occuring.

That’s all for now folks, keep on geeking!


Review of the Star / Alps S9920 Android Phone

s9920

Last November I found myself in need of a new smart phone, having opted for a sim only contract with “Three”.

Looking for a new phone is like shopping for any new device, if you don’t do your research, your taking a gamble with anything you buy. Which is why I spent several weeks simply researching Android smart phones. My budget wouldn’t stretch to a new model from any of the main brands, such as Samsung, HTC or Sony. So I was left to choose between a 2nd hand model or at the android phones being produce in China’s Shenzhen district. Most of which are clones of popular brands, iPhones, Samsung S3’s and Galaxy Tabs to name but a few. Admittedly, not all of them are good. It has only been in the past couple of years the quality of these clones has begun to resemble anything respectable. Usually these devices require a great deal of hacking before they can be usable. Which brings me to another issue. With almost any generic droid device you buy from China, support from the manufacturer is near on non-existent. More often the only support you will find, comes from online forums and user groups. That is so long as the device you have is popular enough to have a large user base.
Choosing A Smart Phones9920box

While eBay is a great site to see all the handsets available, it does not really offer any insight to whether a device is good are bad. Which is where Amazon really does pick up the slack and offers a good alternative. From toasters to curling tongs, Amazon has amassed a impressive collection of user reviews for almost every device available via its website.

While I was looking my eye caught sight of the Star 9920, also known as the Alps S9920. Essentially a Samsung S3 Mini clone, the S9920 boasts the following specs.

-Dual core MTK6577 1.0 GHz CPU
-512mb ram and 4Gb Rom (2.5gb usable)
-GPU PowerVR SGX 531
-4” Capacitive Touch, TFT Display, 260K colours, 800×480 resolution
-Camera 5 MP 2560×1920 (Up to 12.0MP interpolation 4000×3000)
Price £72.99

Compared to the Samsung S3 mini which has

-CPU 1 GHz dual-core Cortex-A9
-1GB Ram, 8/16 GB Rom
-GPU Mali-400
-4” Display Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors, 480 x 800 pixels
-Camera 5 MP, 2592×1944 pixels, autofocus, LED flash, check quality
Price £171.93

The S9920 may not compete with the S3 mini, but for a sub £100 smart phone. The specs offer good value for money to anyone who can’t afford the real thing. As I found myself in such a situation, I decided to order one from Amazon, after reading the reviews left by previous customers. I decided to buy my device from a company called Dracotek, who appeared to have developed a good reputation for delivering on time and offering good customer support. Something I later would later come to appreciate, after my first handset arrived with a paint defect. Dracotek happily replaced the device and had another out to me within a week.

 

Hardware

The S9920 is ready to use out the box, it comes with two sim slots, but only the full size, secondary slot is 3G compatible. I had some issues with my 3G, which I later discovered was down to my sim being old. Three kindly upgraded my sim for free and I was soon experiencing faster 3G connectivity.

The S9920 apparently comes with a stock install of ice cream sandwich 4.1.1, however there is evidence to suggest it is actually ICS 4.0, which has been hacked to report a false version. Th version number isn’t the only part of the OS to have been altered. While using the S9920, I have noted missing menu’s and features, that are stock to ICS, but appear to be missing from the install on this phone.  The built in music player and camera are an improvement over the stock apps on my HTC Wildfire S and perform pretty well.

Camera

For a sub £100 phone, the camera is not too shabby. In the time I have had the S9920, I have used the camera a fair deal and found the pictures more then adequate for Facebook, I wont be replacing my digital camera anytime soon. One of my first mistakes was to ramp the settings up to 12 megapixels, BAD BAD idea! The S9920 has a 5mp lens, interpolating pictures taken at higher resolution such as 12 megapixels. This results in images that are washed out, blurry and generally pretty poor quality. Even the Apple Quicktake 150 I reviewed recently, would laugh at them. Really do not use the 12mp setting, unless you want photo’s that look like a 90’s digital camera took them.

Display & Touch Screen

The display is pretty reasonable and I would say on par with my Wildfire S. Pictures are crisp and web browsing is a pleasant experience. The touch sensitivity is a little off, which can lead to typo’s and occasional bouts of phantom screen presses. This will manifest with the phone randomly acting like a part of the screen has been pressed when it has not. Causing text to be selected or buttons to be pressed. I’m not entirely sure why this happens, but you can bet it has something to do with the screen being constructed of plastic and not glass.  I’ve notice after a months use, the phantom screen touches seem to be happening more and more often.
The screen seems hypersensitive to finger grease and as there is no calibration tool in 4.1, you can’t adjust the touch screen. The only way I found to make typing easier, was by installing the Google keyboard and enabling the gesture typing feature.

WIFI & Network

Occasionally the wifi does not connect to my router straight away. I think this is more a bug then a hardware problem. Also sometimes when I make a call, on connection the sound will be distorted and garbled. This is something I have had to put up with while on the Three network, but occurring with greater frequency since I switched to the S9920.  Overall both wifi and antenna functions work fine 95% of the time.

 

Calling and Haptic feedback glitch

 

Now here is a real sore spot for me, that was driving me to despair. Something I noticed when making the first few calls using the S9920, was how the handset would vibrate whenever a call connected. Tried as I might, I was unable to find any settings within the Haptic feedback menu to disable it, and the longer I used the phone, the more it annoyed me. Especially when the vibrations were being picked up by the phone’s internal microphone. Making it audible to other people during a call. I spent the first week after receiving my S9920, searching for a means of turning the vibration off, which wasn’t made any easier due to the S9920’s hacked install of ICS. Which is missing parts of the OS, including those that control the vibration and haptic feedback settings. I was beginning to feel like I was truly up the creek without a paddle, when I fell upon some software on Playstore.

Vibrafix

Playstore Link

This handy piece of software is freeware and was made for the very issue the S9920 was suffering with. I can’t give enough praise unnamedto the developer for making this app available on Playstore and for free no less! Vibrafix requires a rooted android phone to work and superSU privileges. Once up and running, it completely disables the vibrate function of your phone and allows you to select what notifications are permitted to use the vibrate function. If you have bought a phone from China, the benefits of rooting your device really outweigh the zero chance of warranty support you can expect from the company you bought it from. In short, it’s a no brainer in my opinion.

After selecting “On Call” from the Vibrafix menu, I made a call and sure enough no annoying vibration. Finally my woe’s where over!

 

Phantom screen touch

While I’m still not sure why this is happening, I’m sure it is due to the budget construction of the TFT display. There are several reviews from customers on Amazon, who have experienced faulty screens on their handsets. This fault usually occurres several weeks after purchasing the device. So whether my handset will suffer a complete TFT failure as well, I don’t know. It could be a design fault with the device, so I will have to keep an eye on it.

Conclusion

The S9920 has proved to be a good handset, especially for the price. For the £79 that I paid, I honestly am impressed with what I have. There is still some room for improvement. Such as the plastic screen, which is more susceptible to scratching and bending than the glass alternative.

While the stock ICS install of Android is missing some functions, it does not hinder the phone from working as intended. As I found with Vibrafix, you can often find an app on the Playstore that will fill in for the part of the OS that is missing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Fixing Android Wifi Woes

If like me you own a smart phone running android 2.2, you might have encounter a rather annoying niggle which arises when trying to connect to a router using Wireless-N protocols. Recently my HTC Wildfire informed me of an update availible, upgrading me handset from Eclair (2.1) to Froyo (2.2) which i prudently installed. Once the phone has restarted, i discovered to much annoyance that the handset would not connect to my wireless network for love or money. Several hours ensued with me trolling through the settings of my Linksys WRT300N and i come up with nothing, aside from stress and a lot of acid.

So what in heavens was the matter with my phone and the Wifi? After further seaches online i discovered other people where also having the same issues as I. However nobody seemed wise as to the problem, apart from it was localised to routers using wireless N draft. For those of you not in the know, Wireless N is the successor of the ageing Wireless B/G which you will find in almost any laptop built in the past five years, in fact there are still devices being sold now, which are sold with a wireless B/G adaptor.

However until recently Wireless-N was not finalised, meaning devices where being built using a preliminary release of the Wireless-N standard. Leaving manufacturers to decide on how they implimented the draft standard in to their devices. While companies have spent of lot of time fixing the issues, there are still some devices, like my WRT300N. Which are no longer recieving firmware updates, simply due to their age. Meaning those bugs can only be rectified by purchasing a replacement device. As my router works fine with the rest of my devices, i was not prepared to spend money simply because my phone didn’t connect to the wireless. So i decided to leave it. Several months passed when during an update to my ZT-180 tablet i was faced with the dreaded wireless problem once more, this time it was serious. The life line to an android tablet is it’s connection to the internet, without which the device in my opinion becomes a bit useless. As a consumer device, was good was it, if it wasn’t consuming my bandwidth?

Determined to address the issue, i took once more to the internet and discovered after some time. A random post on a forum, the url of which i’ve subsiquently forgotten. The poster suggested using the advanced wifi settings in the android OS and setting a static IP address. A static IP is useful if your router is struggling to assign DHCP addresses or your device is simply getting a bad IP address. There was a time many moons ago, when our whole network at home was running with static IP’s and BNC cable. OH how i miss those days, yes..like a sore tooth! 🙂

So now i’ve waffled on, lets set your android device to use a static IP

Assuming your are on the “desktop” or main screen of your device as it where.

1. Press Menu
2. Press Settings
3. Press Wireless and Networks
4. Press Wireless settings
5. Press Menu
6. Press Advanced
7. Now select “Use Static IP”

Now here comes the part that will require some advanced knowledge and the use of a computer. Assuming the machine is running Windows, under Win XP, click run from the start menu and type “CMD” then press the return key. A window should appear on the screen, type “ipconfig” press return.

In Windows 7, click the menu button and in the seach field type “CMD” press the return key. Hopefully a window should pop up. Making sure that you are typing within this window enter the command “IPCONFIG” press the return key.

OK now if your still with me, XP and Win 7 users. A lot of information should now have filled your screen. The important parts we want are Default Gateway and Subnet Mask. Make sure to enter this information in to the appropriate field on your android device. Usually the Gateway will be something similair to 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.0.1. The subnet mask is typically 255.255.255.0.

IP address, pay attention to the IP address listed on your main computer, it should be listed under IPv4 address. Now let us say your gateway address is 192.168.1.1, your computer might have an address of 192.168.1.2 or even 192.169.1.12. Really is depends on how many computers are linked to your LAN (local area network) Lets go further and say like me you have a main PC and a laptop. It’s highly likely you do not have more then say 3-4 devices in your house hold. But to be on the safe side, give your android device an IP address of 192.168.1.30. This will put it well out of the way and hopefully not interfere with your routers ability to handle DHCP addresses as usual. Please note you will need to adjust your IP address accordingly, so if your gateway is 192.168.0.1 then you will need to use that address as reference and incriment the final digit.

Next is the DNS setting! right now usually this would be an address provided to your router by your service provider. However for your android device, your router IS your service provider. So enter in your default gateway address in to the fields for DNS1 and DNS2.

Now press the Home button or the back button to get back to the main screen and hopefully if you try your wifi, it should work. Note if you plan on using the wifi at starbucks or a friends, be sure to untick the “use static IP” in your advanced settings. Dont worry, your device will remember the settings for when you get home.

All the best