Running Android on the HTC HD2

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HD2 running Android Froyo

After spending a few weeks on the HD2 Android Development forums at XDA I learned how to coerce my T-Mobile HTC HD2 into dual-booting Android and WinMo. As of today I’ve got Android Froyo running with few issues and reasonable battery life. In this post I’ll explain how how you can dual-boot Android and WinMo on your HD2 as well.

Forget dual-booting! Learn how to direct boot Android on the HD2 for faster booting, better battery life and frequent updates.

First, flash the boot loader. Doing so will allow you to replace windows mobile with custom roms better suited for running Android. I’ve flashed three HD2s with Cotulla’s HSPL3 boot loader and haven’t had any issues.

Warning: Flashing the boot loader may void your warranty, though you can uninstall HSPL3 by rerunning the HSPL3 setup and choosing the standard SPL 2.08.0000 option.

With the new boot loader installed, flash the windows rom. Find a good replacement rom that will load Android quickly and run it stably. Roms I’ve found worked well with the HD2 Android builds are Miri and Chucky ROMs. Check XDA and htcpedia for custom roms.

Back-up your data and reformat the SD card.

To install Android on the HD2 download and install any of the recent HD2 Android builds from the forums on XDA. My favorite builds right now are the near-stock Froyo builds created by darkstone. (Note: See my current set-up for what I’m using now.)

Once you’ve got Android installed, make running it easier. Exceller Multiple Build Loader provides a nice interface for booting into Windows or Android automatically after the phone powers on. There is also support for booting into Ubuntu, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Govern Android battery consumption. SetCPU can be used to manage clock speeds, making it easy to reduce battery drain. It can be downloaded from the Market at a cost, or here for free. (Note: Free version requires adb to install.) Try setting a Screen Off profile that limits the CPU usage to 245 max with an Up Threshold of 30, set on boot, to prevent much of the battery drain associated with sleep mode.

Tip: To install the free version of SetCPU, download it, install adb, connect the Android phone to USB, open a command line, cd to the location of the APK file and type adb install setcpu.apk.

If you experience issues in the Android OS, try upgrading the radio. Though something I overlooked at first, upgrading the radio helped me prevent SoD and robotic voices. Grab a new radio from the HDC HT2 Radio Rom Thread at XDA.

Warning: Flashing an incorrect radio may cause issues with your device. Ensure the radio used is compatible before updating.

With enough tweaking your phone should be running Android issue-free all day with acceptable battery life. If not, keep messing with it. Try turning off the auto-rotate option in settings, downloading a different Android build or even swapping in a newer Linux kernel image (zImage) to find what works best for you. Don’t have time? Learn from experience by checking out others’ reply signatures on the forums on XDA and htcpedia to look for their set-ups.

Here’s mine (last updated 18-Dec-10):

Check the direct boot Gingerbread to HD2 post for most up-to-date status using NAND.

Happy modding!