Monday, August 1, 2011

CyanogenMod on the Nook Color

Ever wanted to get your hands on a tablet without the $600 price tag? I had been casually watching them for several months but I was never really serious about it until I found the Nook Color by Barnes and Noble. Unlike most devices, it was the price that caught my eye, not the hardware. They retail for $250, but you can pick up a re-furbished one for $200. If you have been interested in trying a tablet out or think it would be useful but can't quite justify the purchase, I would recommend you try the Color Nook. Of course I wasn't satisfied with the default Operating System, but once I put CyanogenMod 7 on it I have nothing but good things to say about it.

Here are the instructions to run CM7 from your SD card on a Nook Color. The nicest part about running it from the SD card is that you won't void your warranty because you are booting from the SD card, and you can still get back to the default Nook Color Operating System. To get started, make sure you download the necessary files from the bottom of the post.Once you have installed CM7, make sure to check out the Additional Features & Applications post - Coming Soon!

  1. Connect your SD card to your computer. (the next step will destroy all data on the card, so backup your information if you will miss it.)
  2. The next step is to de-compress the image file and then use it to image the SD card. In Windows use the Win32 Disk Imager. For Linux/Mac you can use the dd command.
  3. Once the card is imaged you will probably only be able to see the boot partition. Don't be alarmed if it seems very small (only a little over 100 MB), you will still be able to use the rest of your space.
  4. Copy both the CM7-RC archive file and the Google Apps file to the boot partition on the SD card (don't change the file names).
  5. Now go ahead and eject/safely remove the SD card from your computer and put it into your Nook Color.
  6. It is now time to actually install CM7 on your Nook! Make sure that it is completely off (hold down power button and shut down).
  7. Recovery Mode: This next part may be a little tricky, but you can always try again if needed:
    1. Hold down the Home (Nook) button & Power button.
    2. When the "loading..." message appears, release the Power button and then hold it again.
    3. If successful you will see the Linux penguin "Tux" and the automatic install will begin.
  8. After the installation your Nook will turn itself off. Simply hold down Power to start it and a minute later you should be enjoying CM 7 on your Nook Color!

Files used for the installation:
SD Card Image
CM7 7.1.0-RC
Google Apps (Android Market, Gmail, etc.)
Win32 Disk Imager Note: Only needed for Windows; use dd command on Linux & Unix.

Sources:
SD Card Image
CyanogenMod - Nook Color