U8 SmartHack

Can I get a opensource OS easely on the U8 (clone)watch?

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Can we launch our own applications? can it run Linux? or do we just want it to work, with Blinky leds and SDcards? trow in an arduino, or realy trow it out with a ESP8266? Dunno, I would like to thinker with my watch and keep track of my progress. For a 14 euro (15 dollar) watch with everything to get started :D Lets GO ... did the price just drop below 10? and did someone already got some Fernvale code running? (, The "Bunnie" Andrew Huang)

Anyway, can it run some "smartwatch" things and IO stuff? I see empty pads :D

I used these drivers, seem to work nice on Windows 10. (hint for linux users, it will make the serial port work that is detected for a short time, maybe Linux has support already... dunno, dint try it) suport for W2K, 98, XP, Vista, 7 and apparently higher, both 32 and 64 bit

x-zip-compressed - 218.77 kB - 01/14/2016 at 22:14


FlashTool_v5.1420.00 Azeem.rar

This is generaly seen as the most stable firmware tool package. I scanned it, should be save. You should be able to make a backup of your watch now.

x-rar - 4.00 MB - 01/14/2016 at 21:28


  • Some time after log 1, I found a bunny

    codeasm01/29/2016 at 19:18 0 comments

    Did I just purposly missed the Kosagi forums or just didnt read the right google results yet?

    So longer story short (I need to do it this way) I got my Linux back up and running and should be able to do some research in to getting an new OS on my watch.

    Just before you end up reading and digging tons of Forum threads and get distracted (if you not already are ;)

    fernvale = a hardware project, a board that has a MT6280 as SoC.
    fernly = the temporarely made software for fernvale boards = company making the said above stuff (Adrew Huang lives here)

    Maybe there is MicroPython for it aswell.

    anyway, this is what I look at now:

    For you windows fanbooys, probably not Fernly but another OS will be compiled and ready for your downloadeble pleasure. I have no idea whats next, but use this as a basis for my Watch, get to know it better and write some stuff. See you in the next blog.

  • Somewhere to start

    codeasm01/14/2016 at 22:13 0 comments

    Yesterday I finanly got some software to work with my watch... the watch dint got detected. Did they sell me a USB cable without datalines? after multiple times trying I tried another cable... and you see... it worked. Windows correctly saw some new devices.

    And while I was trying and trying to make a backup of my watch by advice by the guys and girls over XDA forums, Someone made a teardown video and someone a blogpost. (actualy I saw more of those, but (lee ?) from made it to the hackaday page.

    Well that triggered my writing and researching skills to lvl max. Because I found it quite hard to find everything. So in order to help anyone with a quickstart, I made a plan to "dump" everything I know in some places neat and tidy... well, sort off.

    Your reading my Log here at Hackaday IO, ive posted my notes from earlier and yesterday already on my "blog", hope you enjoy. And by the way, please, please make a backup. and post any cool findings and hacks you did with you watch.

    Or you could just buy one right now :D

    Did chipworks decap a MT(K)6261 already ? YES, but a MA, wich is of a smartphone... Im afraid that it is not exactly the same as our MT6261DA (or MT6260)

View all 2 project logs

  • 1
    Step 1

    First of all, make sure you installed the MediaTek drivers, they are available. and I tried them on Windows 10, should work. there are drivers for Win2000, Xp, 7 and Vista. and for 64bits. Ive run the one for 7/Vista succesfully on WIndows 10. You can check if succesfully if you connect a turned off watch will be detected as Serial com (very brief, it will switch to storage device.) most of the time COM3, but I dont know the magic byte.

  • 2
    Step 2

    Open Flash_tool.exe, you can find it in the archive "FlashTool_v5.1420.00 Azeem" for example. Ofcourse you need to extract that first

  • 3
    Step 3

    Open the tab "Read Back"

View all 9 instructions

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john.ohno wrote 10/09/2017 at 16:43 point

There are a lot of U8 images floating around, and it's probably worth disassembling them to figure out the pertinent addresses and setup.

From the kinds of problems people have been having with flash updates, it looks like the clones often map the display to a different set of addresses than the original U8 (after all, the most common error after an update is the display being blank or the touchscreen being non-responsive).

I almost definitely have a clone, not the original. And, I don't really have the background with arm programming that's probably necessary to write a proper ARM OS. But, if I have time, I'll look into getting a 'hello world' image working.

  Are you sure? yes | no

Shelvacu wrote 08/19/2016 at 06:25 point

How would this be done on linux? Is there any open-source equivelent to flash_tool.exe or do I just have to run windows for now? Do we know how it communicates with the watch?

  Are you sure? yes | no

john.ohno wrote 10/09/2017 at 16:42 point

I'm taking a look at this myself. It looks like the windows version of flash_tool actually depends upon a USB mass storage driver for mounting the watch. I suspect that if you could convince the kernel to treat the U8 watch as a USB mass storage device, then updating the OS will be as easy as running dd against it (or possibly even easier -- like replacing a particular file). (This is similar to how you install rockbox on a sansa clip.)

  Are you sure? yes | no

hjotha wrote 07/25/2016 at 21:07 point

you gave up because its impossible, right?

  Are you sure? yes | no

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