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  • isvarahparamahkrsnah

    isvarahparamahkrsnah 4:44 am on January 29, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , environment, Fairphone, , , phones, Samsung   

    Tech Companies: The Fad Of Going Green 

    Last year, Apple dropped the bomb on their fanbase that they wouldn’t be shipping the chargers and earpods along with their new iPhones.

    “Apple is also removing the power adapter and EarPods from iPhone packaging, further reducing carbon emissions and avoiding the mining and use of precious materials, which enables smaller and lighter packaging, and allows for 70 percent more boxes to be shipped on a pallet.”

    Now how much of this is true?
    None of it. I’ll explain why in a bit.

    This year, Samsung announced that they wouldn’t be shipping their new phone with a charger either.
    The same company that was mocking Apple for not including chargers with their phones is now copying that move.
    Is it because they’re also “reducing carbon emissions and avoiding the mining and use of precious materials”?

    A few years ago, when Apple removed the head jack from their phones in the interest of saving space and making “technlogical progress”, Samsung and other companies made fun of them.
    We all know this was a load of crap because they were simply pushing consumers to buy their wireless earpods.
    Lo and behold! Samsung and the other companies did the same shit.

    Here’s the truth; and everybody knows this, but nobody’s saying or doing anything because they’re blinded consumers – tech companies don’t give a rat’s ass about the environment.
    It’s all about the profits – how can we make more money from the consumers? That’s what they’re thinking.

    Any company that really wanted to make progress by going green, would design phones with a modular design. All upgrades would be made by simply replacing individual modules.
    Such a phone would last for decades.
    Customers would spend less money each year, and tech companies would actually be helping the environment.
    But y’know what the problem is? The problem is that these companies wouldn’t be making a lot of profits.
    Their highest revenue would be the year they sold the phones, and after that, profits would trickle down to a minimum as customers would only buy individual modules when needed.
    Now there’s a phone that comes to mind when I said this: the Fairphone.
    Now I read about the Fairphone a long time ago, back in 2013, when they launched their first phone.
    Within a span of 7 years, Fairphone has only released 4 models. And I think that’s commendable, considering that Apple, Samsung and other phone companies release dozens of phones every year.

    If Apple gave two shits about the environment, the iPhone would’ve been designed like the Fairphone and a new model released every 5 years.
    I’ve had a smartphone for 5 years and it still works like a champ.
    Now when I got my phone, the Fairphone 2 was out. And I wish I’d asked for a Fairphone instead of a Samsung.
    On the positive side, I’ve treated my Samsung the same way I’d have treated my Fairphone. I rooted it and installed custom ROMs all the way through. In fact, mine’s now running a personalized custom ROM with Android 10.
    Another consideration is that my Samsung cost like 230 bucks while the Fairphone 2 cost 635 bucks. So, there’s that.
    Now I feel better about owning my crappy Samsung. The price matters.

    Anyway, Apple, Samsung and all the other companies have gone in the opposite direction of the Fairphone.
    While the Fairphone was modular by design, one can’t even open the back of an iPhone to replace the battery.
    Everything is soldered onto the motherboard, except for the battery and the cameras.
    If you wannna see how crappy phone designs with respect to going green, check out Zack aka JerryRigEverything’s channel on YouTube.

    What’s the deal with releasing a new phone every year?
    Like how much tech progress could you make in a year?

    While we’re discussing soldering, can we talk about laptops?
    These days, a lot of laptops have soldered memory. That means you can’t even upgrade the memory.
    And almost all laptops these days come with an internal battery. You can’t just slide and pop the battery out like my HP Pavilion from the last decade.

    There was a time when laptops were modular. You could replace the battery, swap the hard drive, replace the keyboard, screen, almost everything, with relative ease. That’s what old Thinkpads are famous for.

    Remember the days when laptops were rugged, made of strong plastic or aluminium? They were chunky bricks designed to stand the test of time.
    They could last a decade.

    How long does an average laptop last these days?
    With all the soldered memory and sealed design, I doubt they’re used for more than 3 years.

    Consumerism is on the rise, and it has been propelled by Tech companies like Apple and Samsung. Instead of releasing products that would last a long duration, they design products that hardly last a year before they have problems. That way, the consumer is forced to buy the new one when it’s released.

    I’ve read stories of Apple intentionally slowing down old phones to make consumers buy new ones.

    Look at the Apple repair costs on the Apple website.
    It costs more than my phone to repair an iPhone.

    What was Apple’s annual revenue for 2020?
    How did they make that money? By screwing over the consumers? By screwing over the workers in Apple factories?

    I look at the Macbook prices and it’s disgusting.
    I could get a similarly spec’d laptop for half the price.

    Anyway, there’s the article. Apple sucks. Samsung sucks. And anyone who buys into this “going green” bullshit has a very low IQ.

    My Samsung’s going to last another couple of years. But when I do get around to buying another phone, if I ever do, it’ll be something along the lines of Fairphone or whatever phone that comes at the right price with a modular design.

  • isvarahparamahkrsnah

    isvarahparamahkrsnah 4:31 am on January 23, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , firmware, , , Odin, root, Samsung, TWRP   

    TWRP Almost Bricked My Phone 

    Yesterday I decided to test out LibreKrsnah Linux Mobile Alpha 0.1 on my phone.

    The screen has been flickering on and off for a couple of years now. And I decided maybe it was time to try something new, something different.
    Now I just remembered to check for any updates for TWRP and there was one.
    I figured, why not install it first?

    TWRP website download links weren’t working on the browser for some strange reason.
    So I thought why not just pull the downloads manually?

    Loaded the files on my phone and booted into Recovery mode.
    Flashed the new TWRP image files and rebooted.
    Then I saw the error: Could not do normal boot. Invalid kernel length.

    Now I couldn’t even boot into the OS.
    Pressing the power button only yielded the Samsung logo and the error message above.
    My heart sunk.

    I fired up Windows on my netbook and opened Odin, then connected my phone to it.
    Odin showed one device added. Great!
    Now I could just flash TWRP manually.
    I looked up screenshots from a few years ago to check how to do that.

    Then I disconnected my phone and connected again.
    Aaaaand the device drivers failed.
    Windows could not detect the phone anymore.
    I rebooted and connected again. Nothing. Device manager listed unknown device on USB port.

    So I installed the Samsung USB drivers from my old backup.
    Still nothing.
    My netbook could no longer detect my phone.

    I tried different cables to see if it would connect, since the original cable is now worn out and held together with cellotape (lol).
    Still nothing.
    Was my device bricked? Did the phone’s port somehow get fried because the OS was borked?
    All sorts of weird hypotheses were running through my head.

    And then my internet connection stopped working.
    Ain’t this a bitch!
    Just when I needed it to search for a solution, no internet.

    I turned off the router and went to nap.

    Woke up an hour later and turned on the router.
    The internet was back up.
    Looked up the error online and most people seemed to have resolved the problem by flashing new recovery through Odin. Now if I could only get my netbook to detect the phone!

    The problem in my case had been caused by incomplete TWRP files.
    Both the img and tar files were around 7Kb.
    But I didn’t check the file size because I thought everything was cool.
    So TWRP’s broken download site was the root cause of my troubles. I’m surprised TWRP managed to flash the 7Kb files without checking the file size. Then again, I didn’t verify the SHA256 signature files. So it was partly my fault. But mostly TWRP’s fault!

    I found a solution that worked for me.
    I connected a similar phone to the netbook, let the drivers install, and opened Odin. The device was added.
    Then I removed that phone and plugged in mine.
    One device added!

    I flashed TWRP from my backup and then installed different versions of LibreKrsnah Mobile to see if the screen flickering stopped on fresh installations. It didn’t.

    So I installed the last version of LibreKrsnah Mobile then formatted the SD card as internal storage.
    When I tried to root it, TWRP couldn’t read any .zip files.

    Back to the internet to search for a solution.
    I think the problem occurred because I formatted the SD card from TWRP before formatting it from the OS.
    I formatted the SD card as portable storage.
    TWRP could now read the .zip files.

    I reflashed TWRP and reinstalled the OS, just to be safe. Then formatted the SD card as portable storage because it was too slow for internal storage anyway. Even though I’d used it as internal storage in my last working installation.

    I checked TWRP site today and the downloads still do not work.
    I’m lucky that I had backups for everything otherwise I’d be stuck here with a bricked device waiting for TWRP devs to fix their broken site and re-enable downloads.

    Now I’m too scared to test LibreKrsnah Linux Mobile.
    My netbook is already crappy. I can’t afford to brick my phone.

  • isvarahparamahkrsnah

    isvarahparamahkrsnah 7:18 am on October 13, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , operating system, Samsung   

    A Brief History of Krsnah Mobile OS 

    My phone model came out in 2015 running Android 5 Lollipop. The only upgrade that came from the manufacturer was Android 6 Marshmallow about 2 years later. By then I had already installed a Russian build of Marshmallow that worked pretty well for me.
    I installed Android 7 Nougat at around the same time but the battery drained too quickly and the bottom half of the screen flashed on low brightness. Therefore I moved back to Marshmallow and stuck to it for almost 3 years.

    Krsnah Mobile OS was based on from Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow after several tweaks. It was my first attempt at building a personalized mobile OS that catered specifically to my needs. It had major UI changes with a brand new launcher and was fully rooted and debloated. It still ran Google Play Services though.

    Krsnah Mobile OS v2 was based on Android 8 Oreo. It was my first major upgrade since Marshmallow. It included MicroG. I experienced a major issue with the WiFi connectivity where the phone would go into bootloop when connected to the WiFi. I managed to fix the issue from the developer settings. The OS wasn’t as smooth as Marshmallow though. The battery didn’t last as long. I had to charge it everyday, sometimes twice a day, for long usage. It carried on the UI launcher and theme settings from Marshmallow. It couldn’t run Orbot though. And it couldn’t receive phone calls.

    Krsnah Mobile OS v2.1 was another attempt at Android 8.1 Oreo that fixed the WiFi bootloop issues from a fresh install. It used a different launcher and several tweaks in the theme. It got rid of MicroG and ran barebones Android. There were some app incompatibilities and I had to use alternative apps to get around the problem. The major issue was that it kept hanging, all the time; e.g. while playing music, when receiving phone calls, when using apps etc
    This problem had to be fixed urgently.

    Krsnah Mobile OS v3 is the build on Android 9 Pie. It only lasted for a few minutes of use. Since I had directly tested the upgrade from 8.1 Oreo to 10 on my phone, the rollback to 9 Pie seemed like a letdown. Android 9 Pie seems like a half-baked version of 10. It seems like an incomplete OS with many missing features that were finalized in Android 10 release. While 9 Pie was certainly an improvement on 8.1, it wasn’t worth spending time on since I had already tested Android 10.

    Krsnah Mobile OS v4 is built on Android 10. Doesn’t use MicroG. It runs smoothly, is quite fast and doesn’t hang or go into random bootloops. It is free from all bloatware. Battery lasts longer than the previous generations and even more so on standby. The UI launcher and theme are carried on from Krsnah Mobile OS v2.1
    Had an issue running AdAway but it’s now fixed. Also couldn’t run Greenify as there seems to be an app incompatibility. Greenify would randomly close by itself. Haven’t done a comprehensive test on it but everything seems to be good at the moment.

    With that said, I have also installed Krsnah Desktop OS v4.
    This is the first desktop build that directly coincides with the Mobile OS build and with the same number of iterations.
    More on this coming soon.

    — Tuesday, 31st March 2020

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