Recovering IOmega ix2-200 NAS after failed upgrade

The following was my solution to fixing a bad NAND flash, after an upgrade failed halfway through. YMMV but you could at least give it a try.

You’ll get access to the bootloader, and be able to upload a new image via TFTP …

Continue reading

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Recovering a bad flash for Linksys WAP 200

The following are my findings after spending half a day with THREE failed units out of the six I applied the upgrade from 1.0.22 to

This should be a last ditch effort to get your WAP200 working again, after trying the 30/30/30 settings recovery method and whatever else you can find on the net. YMMV.

You can recover this failure, but it will take some expertise and knowledge.

The following is needed:

– RS232 to TLL level shifter 3.3V (I used a PL2303 based clone from Ebay costing about $5,- incl. shipping)
– Philips #2 screwdriver, hobby knife
– Soldering iron
– 2 x 4 PIN header 2.54mm spacing
– Computer with TFTP server installed, configured at
– Firmware from Linksys / Cisco – I used WAP200-FW-


  • Remove the four rubber feet from the unit, carefully peeling them off with the help of the hobby knife
  • Unscrew the four screws in the bottom
  • Remove the lid – take care of the four tabs (one on each side, slide something between lid and base, it will easily pop off)
  • Remove motherboard from base, take care not to yank the antenna cables
  • Solder the 2 x 4 PIN header to the J1 connector (pinout below)
  • Put the motherboard back in the base

This was the hardware modification phase, the rest is software:

  • Connect your RS232 level shifter to the J1 connector
  • Connect ethernet cable from your computer to the WAP200 unit
  • Fire up any terminal emulator you feel comfortable with, the settings are 38400/8N1, no handshaking
  • Power on the WAP200 and watch the bootloader text appearing

You can now confirm whether your problems are due to a bad flash or not. If it is due to a bad flash, you’ll see a message with “Checking CRC ….” and then a failure. If that is the case, proceed:

  • Power cycle the unit, and be ready to press any key when prompted, you have two seconds to stop the automatic boot process.
  • You should end up with an “STR9100>” prompt …

At the prompt issue the following commands

STR9100> tftpboot 100000 WAP200-FW-

This loads the firmware file from your TFTP connected server from to the units RAM 0x100000 (WAP200 has IP address

STR9100> cp.b 100000 10040000 1FFFFF

This writes the downloaded image from memory location 0x100000 to the flash area 0x10040000

If the above worked as expected you can either power cycle the unit, or issue the command:

STR9100> go 10040020

When the WAP200 boots, you should end at a busybox shell. Your settings should be preserved from before the bad flash, but you can reset to factory settings by issuing:

# nvram erase
# reboot

You can finish by reassembling the WAP200 and patting yourself on the back.
Good luck.

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Renovating our living room

It’s a mess!


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Synaptics drivers with full multitouch

Having just spent a fortune on a Sony VAIO Z13 with all the bells and whistles, I’m horribly bothered by the Synaptics drivers not giving me the option to use two finger scrolling.

The system shipped with version from Sony, this driver has a lot of multitouch functionality. Just not two finger scrolling, which I came to like after fiddling with a Macbook Air at a customers request.

My luck had it that Synaptics has just released their Scrybe software, which enables you to draw gestures on the pad after a three-finger click on the pad. The installation of this software automatically upgrades the drivers to verssion 15.1.22 which seem to be very new as of this writing.

But … still no two finger scrolling.

Unless …. you tinker a bit.

First, download the Scrybe application from This will automatically doenload the latest drivers for your system – I got the version mentioned above.

If you do not get better drivers, you can try the Sony drivers I got directly. Download them from:

Install both items. Fire up RegEdit, and navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Synaptics\SynTPCpl\Controls

Now search for “Visibility” within that subkey, and delete all found entries.

Now you have two finger scrolling, and everything else they hid away for some strange reason.

As always, take care when messing about with the registry!

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PetPorte Intelligent Cat Flap

I have to share my enthusiasm with this product/a> I’ve been using for the last 2½ years.

It’s an intelligent RFID based cat flap – perfect for those of us with pets, but who have “visitors” from the neighbours that we do not want in the house.

So how does it work? Pretty cleverly actually. 🙂

Cats are usually ear-marked, with the option to get an electronic RFID tag injected into them. The PetPorte product scans this RFID tag when the cat wants access to your house.

Comparing this to an all access cat flap, or the units that are activated by a magnet on the collar, this is so much better.

In all honesty, my old PetPorte has broken down. The small notches that prevent/give access when the right cat is detected, do not move properly any more. If this is a manufacturing defect, or just wear and tear I do not know (the cat flap has survived 5 cats, of which we unfortunately only have 2 now).

After emailing PetPorte support they are treating this as within their three year warranty. Now I’m a brand new and improved model of the PetPorte at no cost at all. That’s service! Thanks guys.

I’ll post more when I get the new unit installed.

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