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Discovering iPod nano recovery mode

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Steven Troughton-Smith writes on his personal weblog that he may have discovered a way to put his iPod nano into some kind of DFU-like recovery mode. By holding down the restart buttons through two reboots, iTunes will see the device and alert the user. Entering DFU/Recovery mode allows hackers to submit customized software to iOS devices, and doing so with the nano offers the promise of adding modified software.

Troughton-Smith tells TUAW that, now, he "can push firmware files to the device and have them execute." From there, he can boot disk mode or the OS using those firmware files. Check out the video on the next page for a screencast of the process in action.


Troughton-Smith also figured out how to mount the iPod nano's resource partition. He adds that a commenter on his blog post claims that they've reversed the image file format from the resource partition, which is an interesting step forward. "In theory, if we ever find a way to get the resource partition back onto the device," he told TUAW, "This could open up custom themes, etc..."

iPhone hacker DarkMalloc has been coding some additional iPod nano 6G tools, but he tells TUAW that there's still a lot left to do and nothing much to report yet. You can keep an eye on his progress at the Nanotomy github repository that he's set up.

Developer James Whelton has established nanohack.me, a site that posts about the latest nano hacking developments. Whelton recently wrote about a number of nano customization hacks and regularly updates his site with nano hacking news.

We first explored the iPod nano internals back in September.

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