The Blog is Dead

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Well, it’s not really dead, but I only post on here for significant announcements. If you want to keep up with my hackings, feel free to hit me up on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+.

Personal Accounts:


See ya there!

DeskSMS – Text From Anywhere!



commit 33cab5b004a5137947ae76e431d958cd3af91ae1
Author: Koushik Dutta <>
Date:   Thu Jul 14 18:41:17 2011 -0700

    initial commit


Wednesday, July 13th, 2011, is the last night full night of sleep I have gotten in a while. On that day, I started hatching my newest app, DeskSMS. It was an idea I had been bouncing around for a year or so, but never executed for various reasons. There were a few competitors out at the time, but I was certain I could build a better product. And, I did. At least I think so. And the media seems to agree. Smile


DeskSMS is an Android and iOS (jailbroken) app that forwards all your text messages and call history to your GTalk, GMail, or a convenient website and browser extension. It’s basically Google Voice, except with an open API, more delivery options, and minus the number porting inconvenience. One click setup, so even if you’re not tech savvy, you are up and running in 30 seconds.

During development, I’ve seen a lot of creative and funny uses for DeskSMS:

  1. A dispatcher uses it to communicate with all his trucks.
  2. A businessman left his phone at home while travelling abroad, and was still able to manage his texts.
  3. Pretend like you are working at work, when you are actually texting.

But mostly, it’s just an unbelievably convenient tool and time saver. Check it out on the Android Market!

Epic4G Bootstrap

Looking for an Epic4G kernel that has Clockwork Recovery and ROM Manager support built in? Several devs banded together to create a bootstrap for this device. In no particular order:
  • Tanimn: ext4 support (donate)
  • DRockstar: rfs/dual support (donate)
  • rjmjr: lending me a phone
You can support my work grab the kernel flasher off of the Android market for $2.99.
Or you can get it free from the download link here on my site.

ROM Manager Quattro


I’m really proud of ROM Manager 4! It’s the culmination/conglomeration of several projects:

  • ROM Manager now supports comments and ratings!
  • The service behind ROM Manager 4 is hosted on DeployFu.
  • Learned and wrote the service in ASP .NET MVC 3.
  • Finally got around to unsuckifying the ROM Manager UI.
  • WebConnect is no longer a useless chrome-to-phone downloader.
  • Paving the way for even bigger things to come… (hint: a website)

Grab ROM Manager on the Market or a direct download here!

Manually Updating your rooted XOOM

What I just roughly tested.

  1. Download the
  2. adb push <zip name> /sdcard/
  3. adb shell
  4. su
  5. cd /cache
  6. mkdir recovery #it may already exist
  7. cd recovery
  8. echo '--update_package=CACHE:/recovery/' > command
  9. cat /sdcard/ >
  10. reboot recovery

Please do not repost this right into your blog. Last time you guys did that, my instructions had an error, which got corrected. On my site at least. But not in all the copy-pasted locations.

Motorola XOOM Rooted


Since it’s another Google experience device, and ships with fastboot support (albeit, limited), it really does come rooted out of the box. Just needed to figure out the board kernel base, and compile up a new kernel.

Unfortunately the kernel was not available in the Android repositories. At first, I tried using the Harmony kernel, since they are both tegra 2 250 chips. That turned out to be major fail. As soon as I was about to give up, I noticed that AOSP had updated their tegra kernel repository with some new tasty branches for stingray. Kudos to these guys for being so on the ball! I was able to compile that up and get a working recovery to obtain root, and then get Superuser on the device.

I also built up a recovery, but due to a nonfunctional SD card slot (until they release a firmware update that enables the slot), nothing really works. That will come later.

Here are the instructions to root your device (this assumes you have adb and fastboot installed on your computer):

  1. # Download the XOOM root zip.
  2. # Unzip the package.
  3. # Put your junk in the box.
  4. adb reboot bootloader (skip the next 3 steps if you have already unlocked via fastboot)
  5. fastboot oem unlock
  6. # wait for reboot
  7. adb reboot bootloader
  8. fastboot flash boot rootboot.img
  9. fastboot reboot
  10. # wait for reboot
  11. adb remount
  12. adb push su /system/bin/
  13. adb shell ln –s /system/bin/su /system/xbin/su
  14. adb shell chmod 4755 /system/bin/su
  15. adb push Superuser.apk /system/app/

Yep, that should do it.

As I mentioned, I have a working recovery, but will not be releasing it until Google or I get the SD card working.

ROM Manager support will come as soon as that happens. But feel free to buy a Premium copy in advance. Winking smile

And hit me up on Twitter @koush!

PS. Stock boot image for XOOM.

DeployFu – A .NET Platform as a Service

I’m a huge fan of AppEngine and Heroku. And though I can hack up Rails and Servlet code, I’m through and through a .NET developer. Sadly, there is no viable equivalent service for .NET.1 So, like any software geek would do, I took up creating my own. I figured, if I wanted it, chances are, other people need it too.

After being knee deep in Erlang for three months, I have a working product. Introducing DeployFu:


I’m very happy with the progress so far, and am now porting over all my AppEngine projects to DeployFu, one of which processes around $8k a month in payments.2

Here’s a quick overview of what is available so far:

  • Runs on Amazon EC2
  • Automatic load balancing and elastic scaling of web applications across multiple instances
  • SSL on all * domains.
  • SSH to your application
  • ASP .NET (Mono) and Pylons3 support
  • Shared MySQL database instance

Right now, during the beta, the service is completely free. Eventually, there will be a free tier and a pay as you go tier.

Sign up, try it out, and leave me some feedback on the forum!

1 Don’t get me started on Azure. It’s impossible to figure out how much you will be billed. There is no git workflow. Management is a pain.

2 A PayPal IPN endpoint and licensing service for my Android applications.

3 It actually supports Manos, Rails, and NodeJS, but the platform support for those is unsupported or incomplete.

ROM Manager – Any Recovery

This has been a bit overdue, but users who don’t want to use ClockworkMod recovery can now install zip files off their SD card using ROM Manager! (This is a Premium feature only.)

However, there are technical limitations that prevent full ROM Manager support for AmonRa recovery and such. These other recoveries need the proper hooks for ROM Manager to communicate with them and and do scripted installations and backups. But of course, ClockworkMod recovery is open source and can be forked and ported to new devices.