How to install the Rockbox bootloader on your iPod
These are instructions intended to help out advanced users who wish to change their bootloader to something other than the default installed by
or the RBUtil installation program. Normal users should refer to the manual for their ipod and not
follow this guide.
Step 1 - Compile the bootloader
- Follow the CrossCompiler instructions and install the recommended arm-elf versions of gcc and binutils.
- Check out the latest Rockbox CVS source tree - see UsingSVN
- Create a build directory in the same directory as tools, firmware, bootloader etc, run
../tools/configure and select your iPod target and "B" for bootloader.
make - if all goes well a bootloader binary will be created as
bootloader-ipod<yoursortofipod>.ipod in your build directory
Step 2 - Installation
- Write the new bootpartition image back to the iPod:
ipodpatcher -a bootloader-ipod<yoursortofipod>.ipod
When you disconnect the USB cable, your iPod should reboot. At this stage, it will fail to find a copy of Rockbox itself, and should default into loading the Apple firmware. Once you install Rockbox, you can boot to the Apple firmware by holding down MENU whilst your ipod is booting (note that you need to press and hold this key very early in the boot cycle - just before the apple logo appears).
To install new versions of the bootloader, start at Step 2.
Recovering from a crash
When your development version of the bootloader crashes:
- Reboot your iPod by holding the MENU (top) and SELECT (middle) buttons for around 5 seconds.
- Whilst the iPod is rebooting, hold SELECT and PLAY together to enter disk mode.
You can then connect the iPod to your PC and start again.
Copyright © by the contributing authors.