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B&N Nook Successfully Opened

CmdrTaco posted more than 4 years ago | from the can't-wait-to-see-what's-next dept.

Android 275

garg0yle writes "A team has managed to open the Barnes and Noble Nook e-reader, gaining full access to the operating system. From the article: 'The Nook is now a computer running a full Android operating system, with a built-in, free cellular connection to the internet. It also has a battery that lasts days, not hours.' They are documenting their progress on the Nook Devs wiki."

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275 comments

DMCA notice coming (0)

Stavr0 (35032) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432414)

in 3... 2... 1...

... and hacking a device with an active cellular connection in it too. FCC's gonna want a piece of the action too.

Re:DMCA notice coming (5, Insightful)

Abalamahalamatandra (639919) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432470)

What does the FCC care? It's still compliant, even if it's hacked.

I daresay the wireless carrier will be a bit ticked though, but they should have seen it coming. If the data connection this thing uses isn't firewalled to only talk to the B&N servers it's their own fault.

Re:DMCA notice coming (0)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432724)

Licensing, testing, etc...

Re:DMCA notice coming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432820)

I daresay the wireless carrier will be a bit ticked though, but they should have seen it coming.

Which country are you talking about, cause in the US, their intelligence is somewhere between dirt and single celled organisms.

Re:DMCA notice coming (1, Insightful)

eepok (545733) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433060)

No... not really. Any "fault" comes from those actually hacking the Nook. I mean, unless it's your fault you got stabbed in the face walking down the street because you didn't bother to wear a steel mask.

Just-World Fallacy: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Just-world_phenomenon [wikipedia.org]

Re:DMCA notice coming (1, Insightful)

quickOnTheUptake (1450889) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433188)

no but it might be your fault when your car gets stolen if you left it running while you were shopping. Especially if you also put a big red sign on top that said "UNATTENDED RUNNING CAR".

Re:DMCA notice coming (4, Insightful)

eepok (545733) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433290)

Again, wrong. The fault lay with the thief. Things do not steal themselves. A running car at an intersection does not skip away merrily. The thief is the cause and catalyst... the fault lay with the thief. (Such is why we don't prosecute victims of crime.)

How soon (1)

jimbobborg (128330) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432424)

until this whole operation gets blocked? I might have to snag one now before BN gets wise to this.

Re:How soon (1)

Kristoph (242780) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432778)

BN won't do anything, AT&T will. They'll simply limit Nook's to specific peer's so they can continue to be used for book purchases but not for general web access.

Re:How soon (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30433050)

Why' d'o people's 'feel t'he ne'ed 'to' 'p'u't an' apo'strophe i'n 'every plur'al word's?

Re:How soon (5, Insightful)

morari (1080535) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433426)

Ph'nglui Mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn!

Free internet? (4, Interesting)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432426)

Its great to see the Nook being opened up to allow unsupported apps, but I wonder about the impact of free 3G will be if this hack is widely used. Will this lead to the Nook2 featuring even more DRM, or perhaps no 3G at all? I sure hope not, but considering that BN will likely take a lot of heat from the service provider I wouldn't be surprised to see abuse of the network leading to a more locked down future device.

Re:Free internet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432596)

They will just block the device off the network at some server somewhere. They will not get any further than the tower.

In other words 'how I turned my 300 dollar device into a useless trinket'.

Re:Free internet? (2, Interesting)

kamikazearun (1282408) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432616)

They keep locking it down. We keep opening it up. We wouldn't have this problem if all devices were "open" in the first place.

Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (5, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432752)

Sorry, but it doesn't work that way. See the problem is cellular Internet costs money. Even if you don't think corporations should be allowed to make a profit, it is still going to cost money. You have to have a large network of radio towers to broadcast the signal, those have to be wired back in to a robust network to route the data, which has to be connected to the Internet at large. Of course all that doesn't maintain itself once built, things break, people need to fix it and look after it.

That all costs money, as such, access is going to have to cost money.

So, why is access "free" on things like the Kindle and Nook? Well it isn't. What happens is that Amazon or Barnes and Noble pick up the cost. There are two reasons they can do this:

1) Usage is low. Since access is used only for searching for, or downloading, new books as well as a smattering of other things like news, it isn't all that much. That means they aren't having to pay out a whole lot per device.

2) A large part of the usage has a profit associated with it, namely buying books. Thus each time you use the wireless to get a book, they make some money.

This leads to a situation where it is feasible to offer it to customers at no charge.

However, if you start using it as general purpose Internet, to browse whatever you want, to download files, to play games, that breaks down. Suddenly cost goes up a whole lot, and less (or perhaps none) of the activity generates any money. As such it can't be sustained. They have to restrict it, shut it down, or charge.

Things in life aren't free. If you think everyone should just give everything away, well that shows a real lack of understanding of how the world works (and a good indication you've never had to provide for yourself).

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (4, Interesting)

Jeff Carr (684298) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432872)

Yes, so you allow free internet usage... up to a point, or for certain things. Then you charge.

Doesn't that sound like any reasonable plan?

Instead, they create a device that could do what you want, but is limited by DRM and artificial restrictions. That is just asking for the device to be opened up, and now they've created the problem they could have solved by simply pricing bandwidth appropriately and increasing their revenue stream.

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (0, Offtopic)

moondawg14 (1058442) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433004)

Yeah. um.... not sure, but I think the "She was asking for it.... look how she was dressed!" argument doesn't really get you very far.

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (1, Interesting)

Jeff Carr (684298) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433058)

That's not the argument at all. The argument is that you should know what your customers want, and if you can give it to them, you should, and should price your products accordingly.

If you don't, they will go with another product or create a solution for themselves out of the materials that they have.

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (5, Insightful)

Homer1946 (1160395) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433152)

I think the point is, there ARE other products that provide general computer functionality with a cellular connection.

The Nook is an eBook reader and that is all is aspires to be. That is it's business model. There is room in this world for specialized devices (they don't ALL have to all be general purpose) and I certainly think companies should have the option of creating special business arrangements (such as a constant cellular connection supported by book purchases) to support those devices.

Of course AT&T will lock this down. That is the right think to do so that those people who DO want a device such as this is, will be able to get it.

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433180)

In criminal law (such as the rape you alluded to), sure. But we're talking about contract law here. "She was asking for it" is not only an acceptable argument, it's pretty much the canonical argument that all others simplify to!

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (-1, Flamebait)

schon (31600) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432882)

They keep locking it down. We keep opening it up. We wouldn't have this problem if all devices were "open" in the first place.

Sorry, but it doesn't work that way. See the problem is cellular Internet costs money.

Sorry, but what the fuck does "cellular internet costing money" have to do with *anything* in the post you replied to?

You spent all of your post addressing a comment, but neglected to actually address anything the comment said, and instead went on an insane rant about "stuff costing money" and "free" and proceeded to try to justify stupid business models.

I think you *really* need to work on your reading comprehension skills.

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (5, Insightful)

Moridineas (213502) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433020)

Hmm, that's a lot of ad hominems and anger in response to a post that was completely correct!

As the GP said, the reason Kindle/Nook are allowed free access to the cell networks is because Amazon and B&N reached an agreement with the cell networks to provide a certain level of service at a certain cost point. I don't think either Amazon or B&N whoever are currently interested in making the Kindle or Nook general purpose computers with tiered pricing schemes, etc, and I'm absolutely certain that the terms of the deals they reached with e.g. Verizon would be VERY different if this was the model they were pushing. In other words, it would completely change the cost structure of the Kindle and Nook for the consumer.

The products are locked down so that this doesn't happen. Do I like it? No. I also don't plan on getting a Kindle or Nook. It's silly to believe that fundamentally changing the nature of the Kindle or Nook wouldn't fundamentally change the price structures involved (and probably making it less attractive to many consumers)

If the devices were open to begin with, they'd be a lot more expensive.

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (1)

kamikazearun (1282408) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432944)

So leave the device open to modification. Use the mac address or imei or whatever else to restrict access to only book purchase sites. How hard could that be? (No sarcasm/offense intended. My knowledge of ebook readers and 3g is rather limited)

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432992)

However, if you start using it as general purpose Internet, to browse whatever you want, to download files, to play games, that breaks down. Suddenly cost goes up a whole lot, and less (or perhaps none) of the activity generates any money. As such it can't be sustained. They have to restrict it, shut it down, or charge.

Actually, they do this the same way you can prevent useful tethering on "smartphone only" plans. You pick a gateway and lock it down - the gateway only allows you to connect to certain sites, or even only allowing access to a proxy server that blocks everything but the content they allow. So even if it's hacked to be open, the "free" access just gets you the same connectivity as the device does, and if that's abused, it's easily shut down by banning the SIM.

Now, maybe B&N didn't do this immediately, but if it gets abusive, it'll probably be locked down like that.

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (1)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432994)

This post has made it into my epic posts lists. If you're ever in Chicago, you're welcome to a beer or $drink_of_your_choice.

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (3, Funny)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433314)

Will it be a free drink? Or does the preceding '$' indicate they will have to pay for it? Using variable notation gives you plausible deniability...

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (5, Insightful)

Rob the Bold (788862) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433238)

However, if you start using it as general purpose Internet, to browse whatever you want, to download files, to play games, that breaks down. Suddenly cost goes up a whole lot, and less (or perhaps none) of the activity generates any money. As such it can't be sustained. They have to restrict it, shut it down, or charge.

Things in life aren't free. If you think everyone should just give everything away, well that shows a real lack of understanding of how the world works (and a good indication you've never had to provide for yourself).

If this is a free market, then as a consumer it is none of my concern how the supplier intends to make money. Nor is it my responsibility to use a product in such a way as to maintain the supplier's sustainability. This does not make me a crook. I'm merely trying to maximize the deal for myself. If this seems somehow unethical, consider that the same applies to the supplier. They need not concern themselves with such things as whether or not their products benefit society as a whole or whether a customer can really afford to buy such an offering.

So anyway, consumer wanting as much as possible for as little as he can is 1/2 of what makes a free market free. That doesn't make customer or supplier immature. To say otherwise shows a lack of understanding of the free market and an indication of a lack of sophistication as a consumer -- sorry, couldn't resist the symmetrical dig ;)

Perhaps if all consumers and all suppliers were to take the long view, the socially responsible view, that might be good. But without laws to enforce this on all parties (and restrict the free market), I just can't afford to put myself at a competitive disadvantage vs. suppliers or other consumers. Can't feed my family or pay the bills with smug self-satisfaction or inner holiness.

Re:Someone else who wants somethign for nothing (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30433240)

bbbbut star trek said everything should be free!

Re:Free internet? (1)

wiredog (43288) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432622)

Free? Why do you think it (and the Kindle) cost $250? You pay for the internet access when you buy the thing.

Re:Free internet? (2, Informative)

Kristoph (242780) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432808)

The internet is paid for by the book purchases, with the carrier receiving a percentage of that. Any margin on the device goes to BN/Amazon.

Re:Free internet? (1)

OrangeTide (124937) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433084)

It's a little of both really. In some instances the sale of ebooks don't actually make enough money to pay for the cost to transfer them over. Like during roaming. And you can still use the cellular even if you never buy a book on it, there is a small but significant minority of customers who buy one or two books and then only use the free browser and download free books. There are a lot of accounting tricks to say that free books come out of a marketing budget. And users that don't buy books come out of some other budget. But if you look at the big picture, and you have to if you're operating a big corporation, there are aspects of the Kindle that don't make money. And ultimately that has to be paid for by a combination of margins on the device and profits on the ebook sales.

Re:Free internet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432670)

Yet this may just be the ``feature'' that sells millions of these devices [if they make pretend to stop this hack, but don't actually do much about it---I might just consider buying it].

And so it begins (1)

yamamushi (903955) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432444)

What crazy antics are AT&T going to throw out to try and stop this one?

Re:And so it begins (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432526)

I would imagine that the 3G equivalents of an ethernet MAC address (what are these IMEA numbers or something?) will be blocked at the network side so that they can only go to the B&N servers that they are "supposed to go to". It can't be all that hard to do.

Re:And so it begins (2, Interesting)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432624)

Or they'll just block them entirely, void the warranty (because it was messed with...) and have Barnes and Noble file 'Network Access Restoration' under 'Warranty Service'.

Re:And so it begins (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432570)

They're probably going to lock in iPhone users to a two-year contract with $100+ data plans, and then not deliver on the promised speeds. That's how they'll make up the difference.

Re:And so it begins (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432916)

I've seen the commercials, their coverage is so laughably small it won't even matter.

Re:And so it begins (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30433046)

Some information about mobile networks: Mobile devices have several ID-codes. Some of them are "easily" changed by a software manipulation, for example the IMEI. However, those aren't the ones which matter. The contract is tied to a SIM (subscriber identity module), which is a system on a chip with built-in cryptographic functions and credentials. Think of it as a private key which can be used to authenticate the SIM but can only be read by destroying the SIM. The SIM is as close to unhackable as it gets. All AT&T needs to do is put all devices with Nook-SIMs on a VPN that only connects to B&N servers. This is the same principle that is used by pay as you go data cards which only allow access to a payment interface when the balance is zero. Free internet access through hacked Nooks will not last, guaranteed.

Holy crap. (1)

Yamata no Orochi (1626135) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432462)

From TFA: If you tear open a Nook (which the team has done) you’ll find that the Android operating system is contained on a microSD card (separate from the microSD expansion slot). From here, it’s a simple matter of using a card reader to mount this card on your computer and changing a single word in the init.rc file (the file that is in charge of which services are begun at startup, similar to a Linux boot).

I'm incredibly surprised it isn't even using proprietary flash storage for this purpose, and am suddenly incredibly attracted to the prospect of this device due to its free cellular internet connection. Can I attach a foldable keyboard to this thing? This begs the question of why we don't already have netbooks this awesome, with free internet and days of battery life.

Re:Holy crap. (5, Insightful)

OldeTimeGeek (725417) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432636)

This begs the question of why we don't already have netbooks this awesome, with free internet and days of battery life.

Because, in the case of the Kindle and Nook, the cost of the wireless connection is subsidized by book sales. There will be no additional purchases to subsidize Netbook access so what purpose would it serve a manufacturer to have it bundled in?

Re:Holy crap. (1)

Yamata no Orochi (1626135) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432668)

I would suspect it would be subsidized by the monumental increase in sales.

Re:Holy crap. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432782)

"We lose money on each unit sold, but we make it up through volume!"

Re:Holy crap. (1)

Yamata no Orochi (1626135) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432848)

Losing money on units sold is a gambling business model to begin with, but I acknowledge that you can't use money you don't have to make more money. I'm probably playing Devil's Advocate too much in this discussion.

Whooosh (3, Funny)

WED Fan (911325) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432960)

Whoooosh, the sound of a Nook zooming over your head.

Money you don't have? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30433164)

"[...] you can't use money you don't have to make more money."
I recommend asking the "Federal" Reserve, World Bank and IMF about how they do it every day.

Re:Holy crap. (1)

OldeTimeGeek (725417) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432866)

Not wholly. The ongoing cost of wireless access has to be covered somehow and without a stable ongoing income, the potential costs would have to be included in the original cost of the unit. Either that, or the costs are will have to be absorbed by a kind of pyramid scheme where the price of future units has to cover the cost of service for the existing ones. A scary prospect.

Re:Holy crap. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432918)

"I would suspect it would be subsidized by the monumental increase in sales."

Free internet access for mobile devices WILL have a cost, and that cost will
far exceed the purchase price of any device.

Expectations of "free" service that someone else has to work ( and spend money )
  to provide are the fantasies of either a criminal or a child.

Re:Holy crap. (1)

Yamata no Orochi (1626135) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432948)

I'm not sure it's fair to assign derogatory terms like criminal or childish to the word 'fantasy.' After all, it's just that.

Limitations of e-paper (4, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432682)

This begs

raises

the question of why we don't already have netbooks this awesome, with free internet

Subsidized by book sales, as OldeTimeGeek pointed out.

and days of battery life.

Netbooks can view YouTube. Readers with electronic paper displays can't.

Re:Limitations of e-paper (1)

Zerth (26112) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432722)

Netbooks can view YouTube. Readers with electronic paper displays can't.

Well, good thing this also has an LCD.

Re:Limitations of e-paper (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432938)

It's like 1" by 4".

Re:Limitations of e-paper (1)

ircmaxell (1117387) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432806)

Netbooks can view YouTube. Readers with electronic paper displays can't.

Well, that's where this device is superior to the Kindle. It has a color LCD display (albeit a small one) in addition to the E-ink. If this "hack" stays open for long enough, I'd bet we'd start seeing some interesting applications that take full advantage of the dual screens (Possibly even a Youtube player). The point being that this device has the hardware to truly be a fun gadget so long as it stays rootable... I'm strongly considering the possibility of buying one now that I know they are so easy to root...

Re:Limitations of e-paper (4, Insightful)

tixxit (1107127) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433284)

This device doesn't have some super superior battery tech. It gets its longevity from the fact that 99% of the time the user is looking at the e-ink display, so the LCD can be turned off. If the LCD is always on, you can bet the battery life will sharply decline.

Re:Limitations of e-paper (1)

Yamata no Orochi (1626135) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432906)

While nice to see posts that smarmily correct me being eligible for both -1 Redundant and the mythical -1 Uninformed, I appreciate you bringing to my attention my misuse of "begs the question." I never knew.

Re:Limitations of e-paper (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30433028)

Well, not until someone writes ASCIITube!

(Or this [newscientist.com] becomes commonplace.)

Re:Holy crap. (3, Insightful)

benjamindees (441808) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432700)

This begs the question of why we don't already have netbooks this awesome, with free internet and days of battery life.

Future value of money, basically. Anything that can be subsidized and supported by a subscription model will be of superior quality whenever the interest rate on lending is >0%. Razors and blades. This is the essence of human capital. Why invest in production or technological improvement when you can invest in locking-in future consumers?

Re:Holy crap. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432772)

This begs the question of why we don't already have netbooks this awesome, with free internet and days of battery life.

Because the internet access isn't free - B&N pays for the bandwidth (as does Amazon, for that matter) and builds the cost of downloading x Mb into the price of the digital book. They don't recoup the cost of using your Nook as a netbook with always-on internet, so either (a) they'll pass it on to people using the Nook as intended in the form of higher e-book prices, (b) they'll raise the price of the Nook or (c) they'll quickly rush to market either a firmware "upgrade" or Nook 2.0 which closes the hole. I'm betting they do all four.

Hell, since you can pull the filesystem out and read it, has anyone looked to see if they built in a killswitch or enforceable upgrade policy?

I've had this for years - Nokia N800 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432812)

I've had this for years - Nokia N800.

I'm always amazed when folks think this hasn't been around for about $200 for years. The N800 can tether to a cell phone or blackberry for data services or use WiFi. Mine is tethered to a friends unlimited cell data plan for lunch and meeting access. I don't have a data plan on my pay-as-u-go cell. At home, it uses WPA2 auth.

9 days of standby time, about 2 days of normal wifi use. If the battery gets too low, I just swap with a spare - take that i-whatever lovers.

The N800/N810/N900 browser is routinely considered the best of any portable device. Mine is running a version of firefox.

Re:I've had this for years - Nokia N800 (1)

Neil Hodges (960909) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433108)

A lot of wireless carriers impose restrictions and/or higher charges on tethering.

Re:Holy crap. (1)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432892)

The "days of battery life" are for electronic paper use and the occasional book download. I imagine if you were surfing the web on it, you'd get a far shorter battery life, even if you hacked the ability to bump pages on to the epaper screen and switch off the touchscreen for reading.

Brilliant move AT&T! (3, Insightful)

D3 (31029) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432500)

Add another device to your overladen 3G network!

nookDevs is down, naturally (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432504)

I may? Oh, joy!

And so it begins.... (2, Insightful)

Raxxon (6291) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432544)

Welcome to the Arms Race, Android and Nook. Enjoy your stay.

Now I have to get one of these, mod it, install the teathering package that I have on my G1 and I'm set... Read books AND provide random WiFi Hotspot...

Who's going to make the Android App that will allow me to use this thing to track my D&D 3.5/4.x character? ;)

lol (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432556)

I used to date a girl who called her pussy a "nook." I succesfully opened it many times :)

Raccoon (0, Offtopic)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432702)

I used to date a girl who called her pussy a "nook."

As opposed to calling a raccoon Nook [wikia.com] ?

Re:lol (0, Offtopic)

The Wild Norseman (1404891) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432908)

I used to date a girl who called her pussy a "nook." I succesfully opened it many times :)

Yeah, but did she notice?

Re:lol (4, Funny)

the_fat_kid (1094399) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432998)

dude, nobody here wants to hear about your mom...

Re:lol (0, Offtopic)

Itninja (937614) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433166)

This joke has been told to death. By the time any level of humor gets to the webcomic level, it's no longer funny: http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2009/12/14/ [penny-arcade.com]

Jailbroken! (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432558)

Can I attach this term to the Nook now too?

filesystem on a chip (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432568)

I had no idea that the filesystem of a device manifests itself as a chip on the board. Where can I find the filesystem chip on my desktop motherboard?

Beware! Root access to the world. (5, Insightful)

pikine (771084) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432576)

If you do this, your Nook will be openly accessible to anyone who port-scanned your Nook and found that port 5555 is open.

Re:Beware! Root access to the world. (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30432728)

Along most of the American eastern and southern coasts, the word "nook" is slang for "vagina". That's why sex is sometimes referred to as "nookie".

So it's funny that these unlocked systems are leaving their ports wide open, ripe for molestation by intruders across the globe.

And suddenly, I want a nook. (1)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432590)

And suddenly, I want a nook.

I was going to wait for the next gen, but the likelihood that B&N would keep it as accessible in the next hardware revision is about as much as Amazon buying these for all their employees.

Re:And suddenly, I want a nook. (1)

afabbro (33948) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433344)

And suddenly, I want a nook.

...because you want to access B&N's book-buying servers to buy ebooks? If you all think this device will be a free portable Internet connection, think again. AT&T will shortly make all traffic from the Nook only routable to the B&N servers as originally intended. At that point, all you'll have is a Nook without a warranty.

Free Cell Connection? "Yes, but don't do that." (3, Insightful)

weston (16146) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432612)

We've been down this road before [slashdot.org] .

Don't do that. Pushing the connection to carry things it wasn't meant to is pretty much theft of service, and it will get pushback from rightfully upset providers, and maybe more from policymakers who see hackers who can't behave themselves.

Do what you'd like with the devices and/or media that you've purchased, but recognize that there's a line of fairness and don't cross it.

Re:Free Cell Connection? "Yes, but don't do that." (3, Interesting)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432968)

It takes a SIM card, so really there's no excuse for using B&N's internet. Get an appropriate SIM and use your own.

Re:Free Cell Connection? "Yes, but don't do that." (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30433414)

I suspect that you may not be from the USA.

Most cellular devices sold in the USA are locked to a specific carrier's network, so unless you are advocating that the nook buyer obtain service only from AT&T, your suggestion will not work.

Will it take another SIM? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433184)

The unit has a SIM slot, hopefully it will take another SIM. Then you can buy service from someone who supports tethering (is there anyone doing that on GSM? heh) if you need that feature. Otherwise, configure your Linux side to perform all communications via WiFi somehow, and you won't have a problem with abusing their network. I don't know if this will increase uptake significantly, but I certainly wouldn't consider buying any such device that I wasn't able to load Linux on.

Re:Free Cell Connection? "Yes, but don't do that." (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433346)

Unfortunately it seems culture these days follows the "if it can be exploited for my own gain I must exploit it and should not be held responsible for exploiting it no matter what damages my actions cause" mentality.

I don't own either of those readers but if I did I'd really appreciate the planless cellular connection. I'd be very annoyed if some people lacking in self restraint caused the companies to disable the cellular connection or force a data plan on someone who wanted to continue using the cellular connection.

Not really (5, Insightful)

electricbern (1222632) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432618)

If those 3G connections are not VPNed exclusively to B&Ns servers that is criminally stupid. If they are, then there is no big deal here, they just showed how you can get full access to a device you purchased. The way it should be.

Re:Not really (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432800)

If those 3G connections are not VPNed exclusively to B&Ns servers that is criminally stupid.

More criminally stupid than sticking an Open Source Operating System (or OSOS as I like to say) on a removable storage device, and unlocking the full potential only requires the altering of 1 word in 1 file?

Re:Not really (4, Insightful)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432890)

No that's ethically brilliant and something I plan on rewarding them for with my dollars.

Re:Not really (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432986)

For the 1 week of free Internet access? Whoever the provider is, (AT&T or whoever) WILL shut it down.

Either they'll find a way to block opened Nooks, or they'll force a patch onto Nook's and disallow access to unpatched Nook's, and the patch will essentially either lock you into the closed system or shut off your internet access.

Re:Not really (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433090)

Even without internet access the device has interesting applications.

Re:Not really (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433176)

About the same as any other jailbroken IPhone, smart-phone, dataphone, Web-phone or handheld device.

Re:Not really (1)

lahvak (69490) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433264)

If they were smart, they would treat it as a regular cell phone, and charge you a hefty monthly data fee for general internet access, while still keeping access to the B and N site free. And B and N would open an application store.

MicroSD card? (3, Insightful)

adamdoyle (1665063) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432654)

They used an open source operating system and stuck in on a removable (albeit internal) MicroSD card?? It's almost as though they wanted it to be hacked. And then they just implemented it with a SIM card (which makes me think the AT&T network abstracts it as a standard cell phone). I wonder what happens if you stick that SIM card in a cellphone (probably doesn't work or else it would've been in the article). Still... I think we all know this won't last for long

Re:MicroSD card? (2, Informative)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433064)

The Nook was unusually fast to market *because* they took advantage of Android instead of having to write their own OS/platform. It was probably cheaper/faster/more convenient for the ODM (hardware builder) to just stick the OS on the SD card instead of ROM/PROM. Remember, the Nook also supports auto-updates, and SD media is rewritable and fairly inexpensive.

Re:MicroSD card? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30433104)

it most likely has a SIM pin on it to prevent it from working in any old cell phone.

Oblig. Penny-Arcade (3, Funny)

Kadagan AU (638260) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432660)

Someone say Nook Opened [penny-arcade.com]

The battery... (1)

The Living Fractal (162153) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432840)

I'd like to see how long the battery lasts during heavy internet use.

Days? Sorry, but I just don't think so. My Kindle DX battery lasts about two weeks, as long as I don't have wireless on and only read 1-2hrs a day. If wireless is on, substantially less. If I'm *using* the wireless a lot, even less than that.

So, let's leave the hyperbole out of the summary, shall we?

Re:The battery... (1)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432910)

It's a quote from the fine article.

eInk MPD remote control client (1)

niko9 (315647) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432842)

I really would love an eInk (read: no back light) MPD client for my custom MPD server. Although, stealing Internet access is not my forte. I wonder of the modem can be swiped out for a WiFi card.

Re:eInk MPD remote control client (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433026)

There is a wifi card in there already.

You knew this was coming... (4, Insightful)

dr_strang (32799) | more than 4 years ago | (#30432888)

This is why we can't have nice things.

Funny ads (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30433182)

Anyone else laugh when the big banner ad at the top of the wiki was an ad to buy a Kindle?

Coral Cache link. (1)

psergiu (67614) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433288)

http://nookdevs.com.nyud.net/Main_Page [nyud.net]

It's not hard. Just add .nyud.net after the hostname.

Re:Coral Cache link. (5, Informative)

psergiu (67614) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433400)

Too late. The wiki is dead.

Here's the text from the "Rooting" page:

======

Looking to root your nook? You have come to the right place!
nookDevs.com is not liable if you screw up during the root process. kthxbai
This will probably void your warranty, nookDevs.com is not liable for that either.
[edit] Requirements

microSD(HC) card adapter
Small screwdriver
45 minutes
Fingernails or a sharp knife
A linux/unix based computer
Android SDK
[edit] Instructions

Turn off nook
Take off the back cover of the nook
Remove the battery
Remove the user microSD card if there is one
Unscrew all screws. Dont lose them. There is a hole in the bottom left with white in it. That is also a screw. Unscrew that.

There are a bunch of tabs around the sides of the nook that release the white bezel. Once released you will need to unseal the glue
Congrats you are 25 percent there!
There are two black tabs on the sides of the nook where the page turn buttons are. Push those back to unlock them

You should be at the board now. Find the OS microSD card

Remove it

Place the microSD card in a adapter, then into a computer
Mount it as ext3 read-write (sudo mount /dev/sdb1 /media/disk replacing values as needed)
Open the file init.rc as sudo (sudo nano init.rc)
Find the line that starts talking about adbd
Replace the first occurance of the word disabled with enabled
50 percent done!
Eject SD card
Put SD card back into nook
close nook up
restart
Now, on a computer again, download the Android dev toolkit (google it)
Open a terminal
cd to the android folder
cd tools ./adb connect IP_OF_NOOK:5555 ./adb shell
If you want to disable updates from B&N run: mv /system/etc/security/otacerts.zip /system/etc/security/otacerts.zip.bak
CONGRATULATIONS! YOU HAVE ROOTED YOUR nook. Have fun, be safe, dont forget to bring a towel
[edit] Notes

More pictures for tutorial to come later
Make sure to put the SIM card back in correctly if you remove it. Blue and white site up with the notch in the battery compartment opening end, on the right hand side. Refer to included pic. (discovered nook 3G not working when I got to work. Paperclips make terrible screwdrivers)
Android Debug Bridge (adb) is a versatile tool lets you manage the state of an emulator instance or Android-powered device.

Full documentation and list of commands available in adb can be found here:
http://developer.android.com/guide/developing/tools/adb.html#commandsummary [android.com]

Far more impressive (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30433318)

One was successfully bought. I tried weeks before they were to hit the stores and the preorders were already into January and I was informed none would be in stores until after the first of the year. The scalpers seemed to have got their hands on them and for $750 to $800 you could buy one on Ebay. I said screw it and bought my niece a Kindle.

Deja Vu all over again... (1)

rickb928 (945187) | more than 4 years ago | (#30433322)

Remember the I-Opener [wikipedia.org] ?

I predict a similar fate to the Nook:

- Wicked cool device hits the market.
- Hacked and liberated.
- Provider(s) lose money due to the liberation.
- Tug-of-war between provider(s) and hackers.
- Provider(s) give up and more on after losing too much money.

I expect the cell connection will be firewalled pretty soon unless they completely munged the process and can't. Expect some OTA updates pronto to keep the rooters out. Tug-of-war over rooting. Eventually new TOS to make you a criminal for using the cell connection in ways other than expected. Dead Nooks all over the place.

I'm kinda tempted to buy one just to root it. I had a LOT OF FUN with my v5 I-Opener. Short-lived, but it made my soldering iron useful again, and kept my GF's 9-year-old daughter entertained and safer than with a standard PC, until she discovered LimeWire. Ugh.

I wonder if Cyanogen has any interest in Nook rooting. He's the best right now.

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