Friday, September 30, 2016

Where to put update zips for CyanogenMod 13

On my nicki device, the cyanogenmod updater downloads the updates to /storage/emulated/0/cmupdater, so when it reboots to recovery, they aren't available.
They have to be moved to /data/media to be usable.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Living without Google Play

Amid the news about Google Play turning on location tracking without consent, let me share how to avoid it.
Step one - install CyanogenMod on your phone.
Step two - do not install Google Play.

Now you have a clean foundation to build on, but how to install apps without Google Play? That's actually quite easy - most opensource apps can be had at the F-Droid store.
To install proprietary apps, I use Raccoon on my desktop to download the apk files from Google Play. Once I move them to the phone they can be installed by tapping on them in the file manager.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Sony headphones useful again

The headphones from my old Xperia Ray turned out to be incompatible with my new Xperia M. They are still fine, but I can't use them with the new phone.
Also they can't be used with a simple MP3 player as the TRRS jack passes the audio output through the microphone, so it's barely audible.
There's the 'press mute button' workaround, but it's quite user unfriendly to keep holding it while cycling...

So, to fix them permanently, I opened the microphone enclosure (a fingernail works well).

You'll notice the two wires marked G and R that connect the mute button.
When shorted, the effect is the same as if the mute button was pressed permanently. And that's what I've done.
A blip of the solder gun and the headphones can be used!