Sat 06 November 2010

G1 Upgrade for more RAM

After the new stable Cyanogenmod version was released last weekend i decided to also upgrade the radio and hboot to modified versions that free additional, much needed RAM. Here are a couple of notes I took in the process to help you decide if flashing the new radio-version is worth the risk of bricking your phone.

When I started the radio upgrade I already had install the latest stable version from Cyanogenmod (6.1) and the latest available AmonRa Recovery (v1.7.0).

The following screenshot shows the radio and hboot versions installed before the upgrade:


Available RAM before the upgrade:

~$ adb shell free
              total         used         free       shared      buffers
  Mem:        97884        96188         1696            0          148
 Swap:            0            0            0
Total:        97884        96188         1696


WARNING: Do not follow these instruction if you do not understand what happens in every single step. If you brick you phone, it is your own fault.

The whole upgrade process takes about 30 minutes.

  • Reboot to the bootloader (Power + Camera) in fastboot mode and flash the new radio & hboot with these commands:
fastboot flash radio radio-
fastboot flash hboot hboot-1.33.0013d.img
fastboot reboot-bootloader
  • Erase the old system and boot partitons:
fastboot erase system -w
fastboot erase boot
  • Reboot to recovery (Power + Home) and restore the nandroid backup you created before
  • Install pershoot’s kernel via recovery
  • Reboot
  • Done



After the Upgrade ~14Mb of additional RAM should be available:

~$ adb shell free
              total         used         free       shared      buffers
  Mem:       112392       110448         1944            0          968
 Swap:        20224          652        19572
Total:       132616       111100        21516

The phone feels a bit faster and this is also reflected in the benchmark score:


As you can see, after the upgrade your G1 still won’t be able to compete with newer phones like the Nexus One or even the Desire Z. But it will probably run a bit smoother then before.

P.S: Suck it, Moto Droid!