Alldocube X Neo

fawkesyeah

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Confirmed that these ROMs only show 2.4ghz networks, no 5ghz in list:
  • caos-v221-200725-arm64-bvN.img
  • bliss-v217-200602-arm64ab-vanilla.img
  • losq-v221-200728-arm64-bvN.img.xz
I wonder if there is something specific to this chip that requires special drivers to recognize 5ghz...
 
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CrimsonKnight13

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Confirmed that these ROMs only show 2.4ghz networks, no 5ghz in list:
  • caos-v221-200725-arm64-bvN.img
  • bliss-v217-200602-arm64ab-vanilla.img
  • losq-v221-200728-arm64-bvN.img.xz
I wonder if there is something specific to this chip that requires special drivers to recognize 5ghz...
There's a Magisk module for Qualcomm WiFi you could try & see if it bumps up the bandwidth. I'll see what mine says in AIDA64 once I'm home.

Could be a sign that the kernel and/or vendor images lack the proper drivers.

Edit: I think I could provide an XML file to flash only the vendor image from the newest international firmware release. After that, flash the boot image from the same F/W & then reapply TWRP from the img file to it while in TWRP.
 
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fawkesyeah

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There's a Magisk module for Qualcomm WiFi you could try & see if it bumps up the bandwidth. I'll see what mine says in AIDA64 once I'm home.

Could be a sign that the kernel and/or vendor images lack the proper drivers.

I tried a couple more ROMs, Bliss and Bless, however the system crashes when joining any WiFi network. I reverted to CAOS for now, and searched for the Magisk module you mentioned. I think it's called "Wifi Bonding (Qcom)" and says it "Doubles your wi-fi bandwidth by modifying WCNSS_qcom_cfg.ini"

I followed the module instructions, downloaded it but didn't install, "forgot" the current WiFi network, installed it, reboot, join WiFi again. First, I do not see any 5ghz networks stiill, and second it does not seem that module made any difference in speed.

I'll look forward to your opinion on it later when you're back.
 

CrimsonKnight13

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I tried a couple more ROMs, Bliss and Bless, however the system crashes when joining any WiFi network. I reverted to CAOS for now, and searched for the Magisk module you mentioned. I think it's called "Wifi Bonding (Qcom)" and says it "Doubles your wi-fi bandwidth by modifying WCNSS_qcom_cfg.ini"

I followed the module instructions, downloaded it but didn't install, "forgot" the current WiFi network, installed it, reboot, join WiFi again. First, I do not see any 5ghz networks stiill, and second it does not seem that module made any difference in speed.

I'll look forward to your opinion on it later when you're back.

No change with the English kernel & vendor images. I'll probably just switch back to make the bootloader happy. AIDA64 does show that 5GHz is supported, but I'm not sure why we're not getting any traction with that band.

Maybe a future firmware update might fix this for us, but for now I'm satisfied with what I have running.
 
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First of all, thank you for your hard work.
-I understand that you are using the 20200522 chinese firmware as a base because it's the only one with a unlockable bootloader. Shouldn't we try to be on the latest english firmware 20200709, at least the boot and vendor images?
-It seems that the X Neo comes in UFS and EMMC versions. How can I know which one I have?
-Is the CAOS ROM working flawlessly? Is hardware acceleration in MX Player working well? Since it's a Q ROM running on a Pie vendor I suppose there could be issues. I also have an Alldocube X and I couldn't find a single GSI Q ROM with hardware acceleration.
 
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CrimsonKnight13

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First of all, thank you for your hard work.
-I understand that you are using the 20200522 chinese firmware as a base because it's the only one with a unlockable bootloader. Shouldn't we try to be on the latest english firmware 20200709, at least the boot and vendor images?
-It seems that the X Neo comes in UFS and EMMC versions. How can I know which one I have?
-Is the CAOS ROM working flawlessly? Is hardware acceleration in MX Player working well? Since it's a Q ROM running on a Pie vendor I suppose there could be issues. I also have an Alldocube X and I couldn't find a single GSI Q ROM with hardware acceleration.

- Doesn't make any difference, especially when it's in deals with the boot & vendor images. Made no difference for the WiFi either, which is usually regionally based with available bands.
- Try UFS first & if it fails, go with EMMC.
- I wouldn't say flawlessly since DRM doesn't work right & WiFi is currently limited to 2.4GHz despite having support for 5. Yes, hardware acceleration works perfectly with the HW+ decoder.
 

fawkesyeah

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Guide updated with EMMC section & screenshots.
Looking good! As I was going through the process, I took a few notes, and detailed the steps for flashing a ROM. You might find this useful to add to the guide, and a new section at the end for "Flashing ROMs"

Boot shortcut keys
Boot into TWRP: Power+VolUP for 7 seconds (from power off), or only 2 seconds from the bootlogo showing.
Force Reboot: Hold Power 14 seconds (from powered on)

Flashing ROMs:
1. Have the Android Development Tools downloaded, and go into that folder.
2. Look for the ADB.exe and Fastboot.exe files.
3. Drop your ROM .img file into this folder.
4. Create a .BAT file inside this folder (where adb.exe and fastboot.exe are), put these lines in it, and replace the last part with your ROM filename. Save it.
Note: Anytime you want to flash a different ROM, just follow these same steps.
Code:
fastboot flash system_a ROMFILENAME.img
fastboot flash system_b ROMFILENAME.img
fastboot -w
fastboot reboot
5. Put your X Neo into Bootloader mode. You can use TWRP to do this if you already have it.
If you don't have TWRP already, then you may need to go into the ROM, enable ADB, and send "adb reboot bootloader" to it.
6. Run your .BAT file. It will begin the flashing process. It flashes both A and B, which is necessary on a Treble ROM.
7. Once done, it will automatically reboot into the new ROM.
8. If the ROM bootloops, then reboot into bootloader and try another ROM.

Flashing anything inside TWRP
1. Be in slot A (go into TWRP > Reboot and see current slot).
2. You can start with either slot, the below steps assume Slot A first, but can be swapped if starting on B.
3. Flash your ZIP file (ROM, Magisk, any ZIP). This installs to the opposite slot (B) by default.
4. Next, go into Reboot menu again, tap Slot B.
5. Now Reboot to Recovery.
6. AGAIN Flash your ZIP file (ROM, Magisk, any ZIP). This installs to Slot A now.
Note: Flashing GAPPS on certain ROMs will produce errors about insufficient space. This is an unrelated error.
7. Go into Reboot menu again, tap Slot A.
8. You can reboot to System now, as both are done.

Known Issues so far:
  • Most GSI ROMs as of now only recognize 2.4ghz networks, not 5ghz. This may change in the future but it is unknown.
  • When trying a ROM that is not on the known working list, at first boot you should always try to join a WiFi network first. This sometimes crashes, and is a sign you cannot use that ROM (yet).
    • The next test is to install Magisk (if you desire it) as some ROMs also crash with this.
  • When installing new ROMs, TWRP seems to revert to Chinese language.
  • Some ROMs do not accept installing Gapps. For instance, LineageOS 17.1 does, but crDroid does not (it reports "insufficient space" in TWRP install)
List of GSI (Generic System Image, for Treble devices) ROMs: https://github.com/phhusson/treble_experimentations/wiki/Generic-System-Image-(GSI)-list

Known working ROMs: ("working" defined by no major crashes, but as of now nothing allows 5ghz WiFi)
  • LineageOS 17.1 GSI
  • crDroid v6.5
  • CAOS v221
  • LOSQ v221
Known NOT working ROMs: ("not working" defined by major crashes triggered by basic functionality)
  • Bless v221
  • Bliss v217
  • AncientOS
 
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CrimsonKnight13

Lord Stabington of [H]ard|Fortress
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Looking good! As I was going through the process, I took a few notes, and detailed the steps for flashing a ROM. You might find this useful to add to the guide, and a new section at the end for "Flashing ROMs"

Thanks! I'll add all of that to the guide once I get home.
 

fawkesyeah

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Updated above post with new information.

Side question, do you know what the difference is between a "bvN" and a "bgN" version of a ROM? Such as CAOS
 
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CrimsonKnight13

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Updated above post with new information

2 additional ROMs to note from an earlier post of mine.

Descendant X - doesn't work with external micro SD cards & locks up with Magisk
HavocOS - crashes with some options & locks up with Magisk
 
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I need some help.
I've managed to flash the chinese firmware using MiFlash (my device is EMMC) and I have unlocked the bootloader. But I cannot flash TWRP.

fastboot flash boot_a TWRP-CUBE_X_Neo-20200522.img
fastboot: error: cannot get boot partition size

If I try to install the CAOS ROM.

fastboot flash system_a caos-v221-200725-arm64-bgN.img
Sending 'system_a' (2287148 KB)
FAILED (remote: 'Requested download size is more than max allowed
')
fastboot: error: Command failed

I think that my fastboot environment is acting weird. Sometimes a command gives a blinking cursor, sometimes the same command fails with an error message or forces a reboot... Any ideas?
 
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Now try fastboot getvar unlocked. I just want to verify that the bootloader isn't being obstinate with you.

unlocked:
Finished. Total time: 0.003s

I really think that my "Android bootloader interface driver" is acting weird. It appears in the device manager under "Kedacom USB Device". Is there another way to flash TWRP without using fastboot?
 

CrimsonKnight13

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I finally could flash TWRP with fastboot using an older PC.
I have flashed CAOS but I cannot connect to my router using Wifi (a 1800 Mhz 4G router). I will try other ROMs tomorrow but, if I have to go back to official chinese firmware, I think I saw that there was no Play Store. Can I use Google services and apps with the chinese firmware?
 

CrimsonKnight13

Lord Stabington of [H]ard|Fortress
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I finally could flash TWRP with fastboot using an older PC.
I have flashed CAOS but I cannot connect to my router using Wifi (a 1800 Mhz 4G router). I will try other ROMs tomorrow but, if I have to go back to official chinese firmware, I think I saw that there was no Play Store. Can I use Google services and apps with the chinese firmware?

Go through the different GSI ROMs to see which one fits your usage. If not, you'll probably want to go with the international stock ROM.
 
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Go through the different GSI ROMs to see which one fits your usage. If not, you'll probably want to go with the international stock ROM.
Do you mean that it's impossible to have the Play Store with the chinese ROM? And I thought you said that the international stock ROM has a locked bootloader.
 

CrimsonKnight13

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Do you mean that it's impossible to have the Play Store with the chinese ROM? And I thought you said that the international stock ROM has a locked bootloader.

Not impossible but a pain. You could use opengapps on a stock ROM. It will complain but it's usable.

Yes, international ROM is tough to unlock even when it says its doing so. Your call on how you want to setup your tablet.
 

CrimsonKnight13

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fawkesyeah pjrodriguez

Taken from the CAOS thread

Some information you should know about knowing what type of gsi it is

<ARCH>_xyZ

<ARCH>
can either be arm, a64 (arm32_binder64) or arm64
x
can either be a or b
y
can either be v, o, g or f
Z
can be N or S

b
= a/b
a = a-only

g = gapps
o = gapps-go
v = vanilla (no gapps included)
f = floss (free & open source apps instead gapps)

N = no superuser
S = superuser included

so in most common example "arm64_avN" is ARM64 A-only vanilla with no superuser
 

CrimsonKnight13

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New finding

QFIL works with EMMC but will require 3 settings be set when using the non-UFS firehose. I'll re-work the EMMC version & will need someone to test it out thoroughly to see if there are any problems.

1596659793931.png


Guide updated with new section & added the EMMC DDR Firehose link/steps (I somehow forgot to add this since its a major component).
 
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CrimsonKnight13

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let me know how you like the device. If you can figure out how to instal the google play store on it and the display is bright i'll get one to use for my drone and to read comics on it.

My bad on not getting back to you on this. It's fairly zippy tablet with a great screen, especially with an Android 10 GSI ROM but the stock ROM does well enough.
 
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After struggling for a day now I'm quite happy with my setup.
I'm on LinageOS 17.1 because it's the first GSI I have tried that works with my 1800 Mhz 4G router.
I have only found two main issues:
1. Chrome and other related browsers freeze after some minutes. It's a documented issue, it seems that the browser cache grows and makes the device out of RAM. Other browsers like Dolphin or Firefox work fine.
2. Location doesn't work, I can't get a GPS fix.
Apart from that, LineageOS seems rock solid with a great battery life. Amazon Prime video is working fine, you mentioned DRM issues, I'm keeping it for the moment. At least I have root and TWRP in the X Neo.
 
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I wanted to confirm that the bootloader of the international stock ROM is unlockable. The unlocking process seems to work but the bootloader screen shows again and again that the bootloader is locked.
By the way, when I flashed the international stock ROM I found and installed an update to version 20200716, release date 2020-7-20.
 

CrimsonKnight13

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Apart from that, LineageOS seems rock solid with a great battery life. Amazon Prime video is working fine, you mentioned DRM issues, I'm keeping it for the moment. At least I have root and TWRP in the X Neo.

Might be an issue with CAOS then. I'm currently avoiding LOS17.1 since it might have issues with external micro sdcards. Maybe I'll get around to testing it on my own soon.

I wanted to confirm that the bootloader of the international stock ROM is unlockable. The unlocking process seems to work but the bootloader screen shows again and again that the bootloader is locked.
By the way, when I flashed the international stock ROM I found and installed an update to version 20200716, release date 2020-7-20.
It doesn't remain unlocked & won't allow flashing through fastboot. That's why I'm still recommending the China 20200522 FW.
 
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Great to know since that would allow me use mine & have a better time with DRM-enabled streaming video.
Bad news, my micro sdcard got just corrupted in LOS 17.1. It happened while two different apps were accesing the card, one reading and one writing, I suppose it's something I should have avoided. After formatting the card it seems to work fine again.
 

CrimsonKnight13

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Bad news, my micro sdcard got just corrupted in LOS 17.1. It happened while two different apps were accesing the card, one reading and one writing, I suppose it's something I should have avoided. After formatting the card it seems to work fine again.
That's probably stemming from the same issues I saw with HavocOS (same codebase I think) & Descendant X. Corruption happened within seconds of reformatting within Android. I had to stick with CAOS for best results with my 400GB MicroSD (exFAT).
 

fawkesyeah

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Back to report that I've been using the tablet rooted for a week now, and I've settled on CAOS rom. It is the most stable with least issues than othe ROMs. Second up was crDroid, especially with the built-in ROM customization tools, but they did not compile a Gapps compatible version, which I needed, and CAOS did, so I settled on that.

The 2.4ghz WiFi limitation does not make much of a real issue, with a good strong router it is indistinguishable most of the time, especially for normal streaming.

Screen colors look MUCH better on custom ROMs than they did on the stock ROM. I think they warmed the colors on stock too much, it had a yellowish tint to it, but custom ROMs have neutral colors, so everything looks great.

All in all, very happy with it!

Recommended apps for anyone:
- AccuBattery: Shows which apps are draining the battery with screen on, and off. Get an idea of how healthy the battery is over time.
- BetterBatteryStats: Useful if you are noticing the battery drain when the screen is off, tells you which apps are keeping it awake.
- RebootManager: Shortcuts to rebooting to Recovery or Bootloader, if your custom ROM doesn't have the Advanced Reboot feature.
- Wi-Fi SweetSpots: Trace your home and find which areas struggle with WiFi singal (since we're stuck in 2.4ghz)

With the first two apps above, I was able to make my X Neo drain only 1% battery on screen off over a total of 16 hours.
 

purplesky

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After struggling for a day now I'm quite happy with my setup.
I'm on LinageOS 17.1 because it's the first GSI I have tried that works with my 1800 Mhz 4G router.
I have only found two main issues:
1. Chrome and other related browsers freeze after some minutes. It's a documented issue, it seems that the browser cache grows and makes the device out of RAM. Other browsers like Dolphin or Firefox work fine.
2. Location doesn't work, I can't get a GPS fix.
Apart from that, LineageOS seems rock solid with a great battery life. Amazon Prime video is working fine, you mentioned DRM issues, I'm keeping it for the moment. At least I have root and TWRP in the X Neo.

I now have CAOS installed, and in addition to their being no 5 GHz wifi like the other roms, I can also confirm that Chrome and other web browsers based off it freeze and crash within the first minute. Firefox works fine. I've heard of many similar problems with Android 10 and Chrome, this seems related.
 
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I've been using LineageOS rooted for a week and I am more than happy. GPS lock is rather slow and Chromium based browsers freeze and crash within the first minute, but other browsers like Dolphin and Firefox work fine. I tried CAOS but it didn't recognize my SIM card, it booted as it wasn't even inserted. Is somebody using CAOS with working mobile networks? Any ideas for a better GPS fix?
 

CrimsonKnight13

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I've been using LineageOS rooted for a week and I am more than happy. GPS lock is rather slow and Chromium based browsers freeze and crash within the first minute, but other browsers like Dolphin and Firefox work fine. I tried CAOS but it didn't recognize my SIM card, it booted as it wasn't even inserted. Is somebody using CAOS with working mobile networks? Any ideas for a better GPS fix?

For GPS, you could try this module. It can be found in the Magisk Module download list in the manager app. It may or may not improve the performance.
 
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taro4

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First of all, thanks for your hard work and the great modification guide!

Last weekend I unlocked the bootloader and am currently on qiDroid with Magisk, which is quite stable and nice. Besides the 5GHz- and Chrome-issues I noticed that there is no e-compass sensor available with this rom. I did not check this with the orignal rom, but several reviews wrote that an e-compass does exist, is that right?

And are there experiences with the backup/restore function in TWRP? I wonder if that works different an A/B-devices compared to A-devices.
 
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