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Subject: Rockbox in FLASH (I'm serious)
Date: 2003-05-12

Hello Rockboxers,

I'm tired of the boot time (18 seconds for me, 'til the music plays) and
like to think aloud whether it's feasible to build Rockbox for programming
into the Flash.

There's 2 issues, first the hardware:
From the schematics, the recorder has a Flash type which needs a high
programming voltage not available nor connectable in the box, meaning it
program itself. I don't know if Archos really used this chip for all the
manufacturing, or if there are boxes in the field with newer chips. Anyway,
it could
be replaced by a 3V programmable type, e.g. AM29LV040 which has twice the
size. The highest address pin can then be used to select between the
Archos firmware for emergencies and a ROM version of Rockbox to mess around
with. (Has anybody dumped the ROM content?)

Then the software:
I don't know if there's any initializations/functions from the original
firmware on which Rockbox relies. For this the startup code needs additions,
besides changes for the Flash environment. I guess the original firmware
copies itself to the DRAM for speed reasons? (The DRAM is 16 bits wide and
potentially faster than the 8 bit Flash.) If not, we could gain some memory
running ROM-based.

Who's with me on this thinking?

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Page was last modified "Jan 10 2012" The Rockbox Crew