Rom kitchens have been around for aspiring Windows Mobile chefs for some time now. Some of which have allowed users to compile and create some good roms for the community. Now at the height of the Android revolution comes a very user friendly kitchen for some of the most popular Android powered HTC devices. The man behind this universal Android kitchen is dsixda. He has been a major contributor to the XDA community since 2007. He is also know for his series of HTC Touch GSM roms, called ONYX. I spoke to him briefly a few days ago, and he filled me in on some of the high points of his kitchen. It is defiantly a step in the right direction for the Android community.
The kitchen currently supports 5 HTC phones: HTC Magic, HTC Dream, HTC Hero, Google Nexus One and the recently added HTC Tattoo. The first kitchen was originally designed for the HTC Hero. He also says it won’t be difficult to add newer HTC devices later on. Which is great, cause we just learned today that the HTC Desire and Legend have been rooted. The kitchen itself has a very basic function, it allows you to unpack a ROM update or a cooked ROM, and then lets you modify it to your own needs. Once you have done tweaking it and modifying it to your needs, can then re-pack it into a ROM (.zip) that can be flashed to your rooted device.
There are a few things you need before you can get started. First off, you need the Android SDK and most importantly you need a rooted Android phone. You will need to know the basic Android commands. The kitchen is based on the LINUX/Unix environment because Android development takes place on those 2 platforms. The kitchen has been designed to work with Ubuntu Linux and different versions of Mac OS X. The big thing is if you are running Windows, you will need to install a virtual machine running Ubuntu. Virtual Box is the best free virtualization software, you can get that here. Once you have done, you can begin to start the extraction process. He also told me that the tools involved in the unpacking/re-packing process are not created by him, he simply complied those tools, and wrote a shell script so they can be accessed via the kitchen’s menu. He made the process a simple as possible for the average user, he just simplified it and saved everyone a big headache!
Who is this kitchen for?
- Those who are brand new to cooking, although advanced cooks may also find it useful
- Those who want full control over what they want cooked, so that they are not always at the mercy of what other cooks are providing in their custom ROM
- Those who are confused by all those scripts and complex commands required for building and extracting
- Those who prefer shipped ROMs over custom ROMs, but want root and don’t want to lose the recovery menu when flashing one
- Those who are tired of custom ROMs that are too buggy and unstable for their everyday use (this is not a jab at the talented cooks here!)
Dsixda has really done an excellent job with this kitchen. And what makes it even better is his clearly written instructions, constant updates, and the he spends helping and answering questions over on XDA. For all instructions, all the downloads and the FAQ, you can head over to his thread at XDA. It has very detailed instructions for installing and setting up the kitchen. There is also a great video featured on theunlockr.com. If you always wanted to cook up your own rom or just want to fool around with the idea I suggest you give this a try. This is a great way to keep the Android community fresh. Maybe you can become the next great DEV like Cyanogen! Below are the links to the kitchen threads for the devices that are currently supported (via XDA)