What Is MAGLDR And How To Install and Use It On HTC HD2

MAGLDR is an alternative custom bootloader for HTC HD2 that unleashes the full potential of your device by giving you several options to install Windows Phone 7, Android and ClockworkMod recovery on it, as well as allowing you to boot into these operating systems or recovery. If you own an HTC HD2 and want to take it beyond Windows Mobile 6.5 but don’t know where to begin, you have come to the right guide that will explain everything you can achieve on this legendary device using MAGLDR.

In case you are wondering whether you should read this guide or not, lets make it easier for you to decide. This guide is for you if you want to:

  • Install Android on your HD2’s internal memory,
  • Install Windows Phone 7 on your HD2’s internal memory,
  • Dual-boot your HD2 with Windows Mobile 6.5 and Android,
  • Dual-boot your HD2 with Windows Phone 7 and Android,
  • Install ClockworkMod Recovery on your HD2’s internal memory,
  • Choose what installed operating system to boot into by default, or
  • Play a game of Tetris right from your HD2’s bootloader!

Now that you have an idea of what exactly is in store for you, let’s get into a little more detail. In what follows, we will be covering:

  1. Introduction
  2. Installing MAGLDR
  3. Entering MAGLDR
  4. Feature Tour
  5. Using MAGLDR for Operating System & Recovery Installation
  6. Future Developments

Introduction

Before we begin, I am wondering how exactly do we describe the HTC HD2. To quote a user who left a comment on one of our HD2-related posts, “They just don’t make devices like that anymore.”, and I believe this statement does justice to this legend of the smartphone world. Shipped with the now depreciated Windows Mobile 6.5 (which wasn’t bad at all at its core as an operating system but only lagged behind when it comes to the user interface), the device is capable of running Android, Windows Phone 7, MeeGo, Ubuntu and even Windows 95 and 98! All of this however is not possible without the contributions made to the system software of the device by the development community. One such system software is MAGLDR.

Developed by senior XDA-Developers forum member and DFT (Dark Forces Team) developer Cotulla, MAGLDR is a custom bootloader for HTC HD2. A bootloader is the first piece of code that executes upon boot; it loads the operating system and gives control of the device to it. MAGLDR does not replace the default bootloader installed on your phone but rather runs immediately after it, thus retaining your bootloader and making it safe to uninstall MAGLDR while still being able to boot the phone.

Apart from booting the operating system, MAGLDR also gives you an advanced yet easy-to-use interface to install, uninstall and manage operating systems on your device. Those familiar with Android customization might find it similar to a custom Android recovery, with a difference that it allows you to install and boot into even one of the most popular Android recoveries – ClockworkMod!

Installation

Before we proceed any further, let’s jump directly to the installation procedure for MAGLDR so that you can install it to your device if you want, and then later go through the feature tour with us while being able to access these features on your device at the same time as well.

Disclaimer: Please follow this guide at your own risk. AddictiveTips will not be liable if your device gets damaged or bricked during the process.

Requirements:

Procedure:

  1. In case your phone is running Windows Mobile, simply connect it to your computer via USB while ActiveSync is running. In case it doesn’t have Windows Mobile installed or you can’t get ActiveSync to recognize it, put it into bootloader mode:
    1. Power off your HTC HD2.
    2. Press the Volume-Down button on your phone, keep it pressed and press the Power button.
    3. Keep both the buttons pressed until you see the red, green, blue and white bootloader screen and then release both buttons.
  2. Now connect your phone to your PC via USB. If this is the first time you’re connecting your phone to the PC in bootloader mode, wait for the drivers to be installed automatically. The term ‘Serial’ in the white area of the screen should now change to ‘USB’.
  3. On your PC, browse to the folder where you extracted MAGLDR 1.13 and run ROMUpdateUtility. HTC HD2 MAGLDR Installation
  4. Confirm that you understand the caution by ticking the checkbox and click Next.
  5. Confirm that you have completed the required steps by ticking the checkbox and click Next.
  6. Click ‘Update’ and on each of the next two screens, click ‘Next’. MAGLDR installation will now begin and your phone will show the progress. It should take just a few seconds. Your phone will reboot once the installation has finished. You may now click ‘Finish’ in the ROM Update Utility.

Congratulations! You now have MAGLDR installed on your phone.

Entering MAGLDR

Once it has been installed, you can enter MAGLDR at any time by powering your phone off and then turning it on by keeping the Power key pressed until you see the MAGLDR options list.

Now that you have MAGLDR installed and you know how to boot into it, lets take a tour of all the awesome features this bootloader offers.

Navigating and Selecting Options

Navigating the options provided by MAGLDR us done using the Volume-Up and Volume-Down keys. Once an option has been highlighted this way, it can be entered by using the ‘Call’ key (left-most). To exit an option or a sub-menu and get to the previous menu, use the ‘End call’ key (right-most). The ‘Windows Logo’ key (center) can often be used to directly jump back to the main MAGLDR menu from any sub-menu. The ‘Home’ (second from left) key and the ‘Back’ (second from right) key don’t seem to have any use in MAGLDR, except in the game of Tetris where the ‘Call’, ‘Home’, ‘Menu’ and ‘End Call’ keys are used for ‘Left’, ‘Down’, ‘Right’ and ‘Rotate’ respectively.

Feature Tour

We will now take a look at all the options provided by MAGLDR and discuss each of them in detail. Do not let this extensive feature list intimidate you, as the only features most users will be needing are pretty self-explanatory and easily accessible. The advanced features are enclosed here in * and can be safely ignored if you just want to use MAGLDR to install or boot Android and/or Windows Phone 7 on your HD2.

HTC HD2 MAGLDR Features

  1. Boot WPH
    Lets you boot into Windows Phone 7 if it is installed on the internal memory of your device.
  2. Boot AD SD
    Allows you to boot your phone into Android installed on the SD card of your phone.
  3. Boot AD NAND
    Allows you to boot your phone into Android installed on its internal (NAND) memory.
  4. USB MassStg
    Enables USB Mass Storage mode on your device so that you can connect it directly to your computer without first having to boot into any installed operating system on your phone. This mode should be used with caution however, as it hasn’t been implemented perfectly yet and there might be errors during the file transfer. It is recommended to boot into an installed OS or use an SD card reader to transfer important files such as ROMs to your device from the computer.
  5. USB Flasher
    Puts your phone into USB Flashing mode that allows you to flash Windows Phone 7, Android (NAND builds) or ClockworkMod recoevry to your phone from the computer via USB. This is a key feature of MAGLDR and one of the most useful. For more detailed instructions on how to use the USB Flasher mode for installing WIndows Phone 7, Android (internal NAND memory builds) or ClockworkMod Recovery to your HTC HD2, see Using MAGLDR for Operating System & Recovery Installation below.
  6. *USB TTY*
    Starts a TTY terminal for advanced users via USB. Most users will never require to use this option.
  7. *AD Hardreset*
    Performs a hard reset on Android if it is installed on the internal (NAND) memory of the device. It basically formats the data and cache partitions with the hr (hard reset) flag, restoring the Android installation to the state it was in when first installed. However, any changes made to the system partition will still remain. This option can be considered the counterpart of performing a hard reset on an Android device using its hardware button combination.
  8. AD Recovery
    Allows you to boot into ClockworkMod recovery if it has been installed on your HD2. Once in ClockworkMod recovery, you will be able to flash Android ROMs just the way you can on any native Android device running ClockworkMod recovery. For more details, see ‘Installing ClockworkMod recovery’ in the Using MAGLDR for Operating System & Recovery Installation section below.
  9. Tetris
    Starts a game of Tetris. MAGLDR flaunts itself as the only bootloader with built-in Tetris. Once you enter this option, you will need to press the ‘Volume-Up’ or ‘Volume-Down’ key to start the game or the ‘Home’ key to get back to the main MAGLDR menu. Once the game has been started though, the key mappings are changed and you cannot return to the main menu before the game finishes, though it’s easy to finish the game by just pressing the ‘Home’ key repeatedly until the blocks read the top. As mentioned above, the ‘Call’, ‘Home’, ‘Menu’ and ‘End Call’ keys are used for ‘Left’, ‘Down’, ‘Right’ and ‘Rotate’ respectively during the game.
  10. Services
    Provides you with a menu of handy advanced options including:
    1. BootSettings
      Allows you to specify how the device boots. The menu options include:
      1. Boot source
        This option allows you to select the source for automatic booting. The optons are:
        1. Android from SD
          If this option is selected, the device will automatically boot into Android from the SD card if it is installed on the SD card. In case there is no Android installation on the SD card, it will give an error and show MAGLDR main menu.
        2. Android from NAND
          Once selected, the phone will automatically boot into Android from the internal (NAND) memory if it has been installed on it, or give an error and show MAGLDR menu if no Android installation is found on the internal (NAND) memory.
        3. WPH from NAND
          Selecting this option will automatically boot the device into Windows Phone if installed on the internal (NAND) memory of the device or give an error and show MAGLDR menu if no Windows Phone installation is found.
      2. AlwaysMenu
        This option allows you to choose whether to always show the MAGLDR menu when the device powers up regardless of what boot source is chosen, or to automatically boot into the boot source selected by the user. It is a simple on/off option.
      3. AD SD Dir
        If multiple installations of Android are present on the SD card, this option allows you to select which one should be used by MAGLDR when booting the phone into Android from the SD card using the ‘Boot AD SD’ option from the main MAGLDR menu. Upon entering this option, you are presented with a list of directories on the SD card and must choose one that includes a valid and properly configured Android SD card installation.
    2. *DMESG to SD*
      This is an advanced, experimental option that dumps the DMESG Android log to the SD card that can be used by developers.
    3. *DumpUDtoSD*
      Using this option will dump the asize partition to the SD card for developers or advanced users. It is a buggy, slow and untested feature and isn’t recommended for use at the moment.
    4. *UseLast24NAND*
      This option allows you to use the last 24 megabytes of the internal (NAND) memory rather than letting it go to waste. It is an experimental feature and updating/reinstalling MAGLDR or performing a hard-reset using the hardware key combination will again set that memory to unused and you will lose all data. Use with caution.
    5. *ClearSD MBR*
      This clears the Master Boot Record of your SD card. This will essentially erase all data on the SD card. Use with caution.
  11. Reset
    Restarts the device.
  12. PowerDown
    Powers the device off.
  13. *Unknown Hidden Features*
    Achieving a score of 111111 in Tetris will unlock hidden features of MAGLDR. Until now, we haven’t come across anyone who has successfully achieved this score and unlocked these features so for now, we are clueless on what these features are. If you end up unlocking these, do let us know. Also note that these features will not necessarily be shown as the 13th option in the main menu and might be in one of the sub-menus

Using MAGLDR for Operating System & Recovery Installation

Using MAGLDR for installing one or more operating systems on your HD2 is way easier than it may sound. Once you have MAGLDR installed, the bulk of the process is done already. Let’s take a look at how to proceed from here for both Windows Phone 7 and Android.

Please note that there are multiple methods for installing Android to your HD2, depending on whether you intend on installing it on the internal memory of the device or the SD card. Let us first explain which method to use in what scenario so that you can decide better and after that, we will provide you with links to detailed guides on each method.

Future Developments

While MAGLDR already boasts quite an impressive feature list, the ambitions of the developers don’t stop here. They plan on implementing the following features in their upcoming releases of MAGLDR:

  • Haret’s startup.txt support for SD builds of Android.
  • Fastboot support.
  • Fixed partition layout support with ability to independently reflash each partition.
  • Boot any Windows Mobile 6.5 ROM from internal (NAND) memory.
  • Boot MAGLDR-specific Windows Mobile 6.5 ROMs from internal (NAND) memory.

We don’t know when will these features get implemented but we are certainly looking forward to them and will be updating this guide once a newer version of MAGLDR is released so keep checking back. To contact the developers or to check out on any future developments yourself, feel free to visit the XDA-Developers forum thread a visit.

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About Alyse Kalish

Alyse Kalish
As an Associate Editor for The SalesJobInfo, Alyse is proud to prove that yes, English majors can change the world. She calls many places home, including Illinois where she grew up and the small town of Hamilton where she attended Colgate University, but she was born to be a New Yorker. In addition to being an avid writer, Alyse loves to dance, both professionally and while waiting for the subway.

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