Running Android 4.0.3 Ice Cream Sandwich on Nokia N9

April 4, 2012
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Here’s some news that you don’t hear every day and is certainly an eye-opener. The Nokia N9 is getting Ice Cream Sandwich. A team of developers and modders are porting Google’s mobile OS to the Finnish manufacturer’s well-known phone. Known officially as Project Mayhem, this is the first attempt in bringing the Android OS to Nokia devices.

If you have a Nokia N9 and you have been dying to get some Android goodness to your device, then this is great news for you. Developers have managed to port Ice Cream Sandwich to the Nokia N9 by crafting a dual-boot kernel that lets users run the MeeGo and Android OS.

Loading Android onto the Nokia N9 requires three general steps: flashing a dual-boot kernel, installing a bootloader, and installing Android to the phone.  The procedure looks tricky, but if you follow our instructions to the letter, you just may be one of the rare few who can dual-boot MeeGo and Android on the Nokia N9.

Warning

The method discussed in this guide is quite complex and may cause your device irreversible damage. We shall not be held responsible for anything that happens to your device. Proceed at your own risk.

Requirements

  • Nokia N9
  • Backup of your personal files and important data.
  • A Windows PC (32-bit)

Instructions

Flashing the Dual-Boot Kernel

  1. On your Nokia N9 head to Settings > Security > Device Lock > Autolock and switch it OFF.
  2. Download the Maemo Flasher for Harmattan program from here (WinFlasher_3.12.1.exe, 4.2 MB) for the Nokia N9 and save it to your PC.
  3. Double-click the installer file (*.exe) to install the flasher on your computer. Install it to “C:Program FilesNokiaFlasher” when prompted for a location.
  4. Switch off your Nokia N9 and make sure it is not plugged into your computer.
  5. Download the latest version of NaviFirm+ from here (navifirmplus_1.7.zip, 356.5 kB) and save it to your PC.  Extract the contents of the ZIP file into a folder on your PC.
  6. Open the folder where you extracted NaviFirm+ to and launch the NaviFirm+ executable program.
  7. Select “Nokia N9″ from the Products column.
  8. Select “30.2012.7.1” from Releases column.
  9. Select your specific Nokia N9 variant from the Variants column.  (Check under the SIM slot on your phone for the identifier for your phone variant.)
  10. Click the Unmark All button at the top-right.
  11. On the list of files, check/click on the filename that begins with DFL16 and has the word “LEGACY” in the filename.
  12. Click the Browse button beside the “Save to” field.  Browse to “C:Program FilesNokiaFlasher” and click the OK button.
  13. Remove the check mark from “Use ProductCode as final path”.
  14. Click the Download button.
  15. Download the kernel image from here (zImage, md5sum: 94d796f63b7c66ef796fce5209134e05) and save it inside the folder “C:Program FilesNokiaFlasher”
  16. On your PC, launch a command prompt, then enter the following commands:
    • cd C:Program FilesNokiaFlasher
    • flasher -a DFL61_HARMATTAN_30.2012.07-1_PR_LEGACY_005-OEM1-958_ARM.bin -k zImage --flash-only=kernel -f -R
  17. Plug the USB cable into your Nokia N9.
  18. Plug the other end of the USB cable into your PC.
  19. The kernel will be flashed to your phone.
  20. Disconnect your phone from your PC after the kernel has been flashed.
  21. Proceed to installing sillyboot.

Installing Sillyboot

  1. Download sillyboot from here or here (sillyboot.tar.bz2, 7.4 kB) and save it to your PC.
  2. On your Nokia N9, head to Settings > Security > Developer Mode and switch it ON.
  3. Connect your Nokia N9 to your PC via USB cable and select USB Storage mode so that you can copy files.
  4. Copy the sillyboot package to the MyDocs folder on your Nokia N9.
  5. Disconnect your phone from your PC.
  6. On your Nokia N9, launch the Terminal app and enter the commands below (press Enter after each line). When prompted for a password, type “rootme” (without the quotes).
    • devel-su
    • tar xjvf /home/user/MyDocs/sillyboot.tar.bz2 -C /
  7. One final stage left: install Ice Cream Sandwich.

Installing Ice Cream Sandwich

  1. Download the ICS ROM file from here or here (nninedroid_ics_alpha1.tar.bz2, md5sum: ee57d8c3b9199e87bb5c355e8c9d1cc3) and save it to your PC.
  2. Connect your Nokia N9 to your PC via USB cable and select USB Storage mode so that you can copy files.
  3. Copy the ICS ROM package to the MyDocs folder on your Nokia N9.
  4. Disconnect your phone from your PC.
  5. On your Nokia N9, launch the Terminal app and enter the commands below (press Enter after each line). When prompted for a password, type “rootme” (without the quotes).
    • devel-su
    • tar xjvf /path_to_archive/nninedroid_ics_alpha1.tar.bz2 -C /home/
  6. Switch off your Nokia N9 and turn it back on.
  7. As your phone reboots, you will be prompted to boot into an alternative OS.  Press Volume Up to do so.  Booting first time into Ice Cream Sandwich will take some time.  Be patient.
  8. Once Android has fully booted on your phone, go to Settings > Display > Sleep and change the value to 30 minutes. Users have reported the critical issue of the phone’s turning off if it goes into sleep mode.)
  9. To boot back to regular MeeGo, simply switch off your phone and turn it back on.

Congratulations! You have successfully installed Ice Cream Sandwich on your Nokia N9.

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