Manuals/Om 2008

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Entering the SIM PIN

Some SIM cards require a PIN code to be entered. If your SIM card is like this, you will see a screen like this after the FreeRunner boots:


The keypad in the lower part of the screen shows only letters, and your PIN is probably numeric. Switch to other keypads by stroking downwards on the screen with the stylus. Then enter your PIN. If you enter a wrong digit, you can backspace by stroking the screen to the left with the stylus. (Keep trying if it doesn't seem to work.) Finally, having composed the correct PIN, tap on the composed number with the stylus. This will enter it into the dialog box where it needs to be. After a brief pause, you will then see the word "Enter" at the top right of the keypad. Tap it. The PIN will then be checked, and if all is well, the Home Screen (next section) will be displayed.

The Home screen

With the bare-bones installation, the home screen looks like this.




The Openmoko Installer (Codename: Assassin) is a tool for installing, updating and uninstalling programs on your Neo. The button to run the Installer is on the bottom of the homescreen.

choose program
install application
install application

Install an Application

Installer needs an internet connection to install applications for the repositories. This can be done via WiFi (currently unstable), USB, GPRS or Bluetooth.

[1] Make sure you are connected to the internet and launch Installer.

[2] At launch, Installer will initially refresh a list of installable programs. After refresh is complete, press the INSTALL button from the bottom bar to view a list of Categories. This is also the default page of the Installer application.

[3] Select a Category from the category list, then select a package to install.

[4] In the package information page, press the image box and confirm to begin.

[5] Once the progress bar shows Done, you will return to the Installer default page. Installation is then complete.

  • To update or uninstall packages, simply replace step [2] with the desired function UPDATE or UNINSTALL and repeat steps [3] through [5].

How to add a Repository ?

Adding a repository allows the package manager to install softwares beyond those included in the original distribution. More power, but also more risk of breakage. Never add feeds which are not for your installed distribution base. If you don't want to add a repository, you can still try to install an application with:

opkg url_to_app.ipk

The community-repository is installed by default in Om 2008.8. Others are listed in the Users Repositories page. To add a feed, create a file named (for example) 'community-repos.conf' in the directory '/etc/opkg' containing a src (or src/gz to pull the gzipped package list) directive like:

src community-repos

Changes to the list of repositories made in '/etc/opkg' will be taken into account when the list of package is refreshed by:

opkg update

Another way to add repositories is to use the package manager itself and install a 'repository package'. Given that no other repository is proposed this way yet, the status of this functionality is unclear at present. Please edit this paragraph if you have more information.

Top Menu

The top menu is now your task switcher and is activated by touching the down arrow. Press "remove" to close currently focused application.


ASU Keyboard
ASU Keyboard with hello
ASU Keyboard with numeric keys
  • Fuzzy typing: you only have to touch near each letter that you want, not exactly on it.
  • Sliding your finger left is backspace.
  • Sliding your finger right is space.
  • Sliding your finger up/down changes between lowercase/uppercase/numbers/special characters.
  • Hovering over a letter for more than 2 seconds activates zoom mode, allowing you to type specific letters without prediction.

Writing something

If the keyboard pops up, just write someting. Each time you touch the screen, with your finger or with the stylus, the keyboard remembers all of the letters that are near where you touched. Then, after each touch, it matches all of the possible letter combinations against words in the dictionary, and shows the matching words above the keyboard, with the most common match in the middle. If you click on this word (or slide the finger over the keyboard to the right), it will be transfered to the cursor position in the input field that is currently selected. If you want one of the matches other than the most common one, use your finger (or stylus) to scroll the matches bar to the left or right, then click when the match that you want is in the middle.

If there are no words in the dictionary that match the touches so far, the keyboard shows a word (regardless of whether it actually makes sense) that is just the sequence of letters closest to each touch.

Note that although this keyboard is often referred to as "predictive", it is not predictive in the sense of guessing further letters, to complete a word, beyond the ones that you have already typed.

Deleting text

To delete the word you have typed before you transferred it to the input box, you can erase it by simply sliding your finger left on the keyboard (this writes a backspace, see below)

Changing keyboard layout

The keyboard only displays a subset of the available keys at any one time. To change the keyboard layout to access additional keys slide your finger up or down directly on the keyboard. You have to do this fast that the zoom will not be activated.

The default layout when the keyboard is displayed is the lowercase alphabet but this may be overwritten by the application bringing up the keyboard.

Where is the Backspase or Space character?

You can input a space or backspace by simply sliding with your finger left or right. Sliding left on the keyboard gives you an backspace, sliding right writes a space. Note that to delete a character inside the input box, the word guessing box needs to be empty. If it is not empty, the backspace will first delete the box and you need to slide your finger left again. If something is inside the guessing box, a right-slide will transfer the typed stuff to the input box currently selected (this is the same as clicking onto the typed word).

Keyboard Zoom

ASU Keyboard with zoom

If you hover your finger (or stylus) over a letter for more than 2 seconds a magnifiying glass, or zoom mode is displayed that allows you to see the letter you are selecting. This also overrides the prediction feature for this letter, so you can type specific letters with this method.


In Om 2008.12, no terminal app is installed by default. To get to a command prompt, you need to set up USB-based networking and use SSH. Before trying to ssh into the FreeRunner, go into the Settings app and set "Suspend" to "off". The default is to go into suspend mode after 30 seconds without activity on the touchscreen, and when in suspend mode, the FreeRunner does not respond to commands sent over the ssh session.


These commands may be used in the terminal application (or in a remote SSH connection). Minimal shell usage skills may be required for Unix newcomers.

  • "ifconfig" - Displays network information.
  • "opkg update" - Updates list of available software.
  • "opkg install" - Install software.
  • "opkg upgrade" - Updates your software.
  • "killall packagekitd" - Quits any package manager which could be running. (Run this command if you get the "Could not obtain administrative lock" error message while running opkg commands)
  • "shutdown -r now" or "reboot" or "telinit 6" - Reboots your phone.

Configuring Om 2008


Connecting your FR through USB to an internet-connected computer

Follow this guide (Windows Users)to share your internet with your phone.

To share your internet connection on a Linux host follow this USB networking guide.

  • If you are also behind a router you may have to change your LAN IP range in your router to avoid using 192.168.0.* as this is the same IP range as what your phone and ICS uses. (If you don't there will be an IP conflict) (see below for a workaround)

After you install and run [Om 2008] for the first time you have to restart to get the USB working. Once you have done that you have to ssh into your phone ( to edit your /etc/network/interfaces so you can access the internet through USB to install software and updates.

Edit the USB section to look like this:

  1. Ethernet/RNDIS gadget (g_ether)
  2. ... or on host side, usbnet and random hwaddr

auto usb0 iface usb0 inet static address netmask network gateway

Editing: (10/12/08) This page is being edited by Emsyr: I believe that the gateway address above should be At least that is how it worked for me (after connecting my NEO to PC following USB networking guide). Please confirm if this edit is globally correct or not and then delete it.

If this note persists without edits in the history, feel free to remove the Editing template from the page.

up echo nameserver > /etc/resolv.conf up echo nameserver >> /etc/resolv.conf

  1. up echo nameserver > /etc/resolv.conf

If you have a 192.168.0.* network, with .200 to .203 ip not used, you can do the following on FR:

auto usb0 iface usb0 inet static address netmask network gateway

and set your host ip to 201. Don't forget to modify routing and check USB networking guide for a DNS MASQ using as FR DNS.


In the Settings application, there's a "WiFi" item. It should work fairly well in stable-updated 2008.8 (even with WPA2).

If it says "WiFi unknown", you can delete the /etc/volatives.cache file and reboot. It should work after that.[1] After connecting using the GUI, you may also need to run "udhcpc eth0" manually in the terminal to get DNS entries added to your resolv.conf. You may also need to run "ifdown usb0" to remove the routing issue caused by having both interfaces up at the same time. Some users have reported that 802.11g modulation needs to be enabled on APs to allow the FreeRunner to connect (The hardware is suppose to support 802.11b/g).

Otherwise there's also lint-wifi. Refer to the section below, "Available Software" to find out what else might be available.

Advanced power management

If you decide not to install the Unofficial Zecke updates you should install "illume-config" to can gain access to more advanced power management features and to change the look of the GUI through the wrench that will now appear in the top bar. (Restart your phone)


There are 2 media players available for the 2008 device.

opkg install qtopia-phone-x11-mediaplayer

Seems to be a very nice application, place media in " ~/Documents/ " or " /media/card/ "

Install it using the "install" application or by typing:

opkg install qtopia-phone-x11-mediaplayer


Sice this media player currently is based on the pulseaudio sound server --- and this sound server breaks all phone applications using sound as soon as the phone goes into power saving mode it is unwise to install this application at this time.

If you have already installed this application you have to uninstall pulseaudio, as well, to get your phone working as a phone again.

This Media Player is basically useless due to the default theme, to. To install with a better theme run:

opkg install openmoko-mediaplayer2 wget tar xjf openmoko-mediaplayer-theme.tar.bz2 -C /usr/share/themes/Moko/gtk-2.0 rm openmoko-mediaplayer-theme.tar.bz2


Why are the buttons in TangoGPS too large? The zoom out is missing!

There is no GTK engine or theme installed with the ASU build. Fortunately, this is easy to fix!

At a terminal:

# opkg install moko-gtk-theme moko-gtk-engine
# ln -s /usr/share/themes/Moko/gtk-2.0/gtkrc /home/root/.gtkrc-2.0

Now you have pretty colors and widgets, but the font is too big. Edit /usr/share/themes/Moko/gtk-2.0/gtkrc in your favorite text editor and add the following line:

gtk-font-name = "Sans 4"

To use the openmoko icon theme, install it with:

# opkg install openmoko-icon-theme-standard2

and enable it editing the /usr/share/themes/Moko/gtk-2.0/gtkrc adding the line:


You shouldn't even need to restart the device, although you will need to restart any GTK-based programs.


TODO: Link to bugreports and check if some of them might be fixed in newer updates (See: To-Do List)
  • The Media Player is basically unusable because of the skin. And is also very buggy.
  • Battery meter always says its charging. Installing a terminal and running "apm" will display the proper battery status. (Appears to now work with the latest updates -- Tkep
  • Your phone will go into standby after 30 seconds EVEN when connected to your computer or wall charger. (Disable this under the settings menu)
  • The wifi doesn't work too well right now. (well, works now with 2008 updates, I think -- OlivierBerger 14:25, 31 August 2008 (UTC))
  • Accelerometers have alpha support via Gestures
  • If you let the battery completely drain you will have problems booting it up. Plug it into the wall charger for a few hours and then plug it into your computer and press power.
  • BUT, if you have another charged battery, such as from the Spares pack, you can boot the Neo with the good battery, plug in wall-charger, and hot-swap the drained battery while booted. This allows you to immediately start "fast-charging" with the wall-charger. (Neo needs to be booted to recognize charger and switch to fast-charging)
  • You'll have to install "illume-config" to have more control over power management, scrolling speeds, keyboard options, and to change how the interface looks.
  • Some software that you install by command-line may appear in in the settings menu (wrench) that you unlock after installing "illume-config".

See also

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