Lenovo(R) IdeaPad A1-07 (16GB) + Android(TM) 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich AKA ICS)


* Notes *

Note01: the information provided here applies only to a 16GB model. The information is provided as is and it is a work in progress. It comes from my experience and applies to it; it could be incomplete and lead to mulfunction in other cases, difficult recovery, difficult roll-back and possible denial of warranty. If you want to use it for your own tests you are free to do at your own risk. If the following instructions did not work for you or caused any problem feedback is welcome.

Note02: before you start reading I really want to underline that I used just 1 zip file, the official one (from a “trusted” source). Cwm, ics1.2 or anything else are not needed in my experience.

Welcome researcher!

This is for you, you who want to do  something differently. The following is not a way to root the IdeaPad.

I successfully installed and run Android 4.0.4 on a unmodified Lenovo IdeaPad A1-07 (16GB) using a very clean light solution, using a custom built script and third party work.

Some of the requirements are these: GNU/Linux environment, a zip archiver (i.e. zip/unzip), lftp, “patch” utility, one microsd card.

Before proceding BACKUP the user documents residing in the IdeaPad: they will be all cleared during the install process.

* Step by step *

1 – Download a107_16GB.sh in home (~) folder, then  chmod u+x ~/a107_16GB.sh;

2 – Download updater-script.a404.patch in home (~) folder;

3 – Review the script (useful hints there) and the patch;

4 – Run the script a107_16GB.sh (the script will download A107I0_A404_001_013_0116_US.zip);

5 – Follow the final messages on screen and do not forget to copy the resulting “~/update.zip” into the root of a microsd card;

6 – Insert the microsd card in Lenovo A1-07 (16GB) that was previously powered off and disconnected from power outlet (battery “well” charged);

7 – Press and hold “vol -” button;

8 – Press and hold I/O button until vibration of the IdeaPad, then release only the I/O button;

9 – Keep holding “vol-” button until a little android mascotte appears: this means the system is updating;

10 – Wait until the upgrade finishes (3 or 4 minutes, be patient and have faith) and IdeaTab turns automatically off. A green sign with a V marks a successful upgrade (you will find a log file written/left in the microsd card);

11 – Restart the IdeaTab and the system prepares its first boot in Android 4.0.4 (2 or 3 minutes, be patient and have faith);

*                   *

It works and looks nice so far.

Does this solution work for you also? Why not sending in your comment or sharing this post?

* FootNotes *

FootNote01: Sometimes the standard 3 buttons blink (i.e. unlocking the screen)

FootNote02: I am not able to use PTP protocol because the system keeps switching to MTP

FootNote03: As it came out from some comments, sometimes wifi “gets crazy”/”does not respond” after periods of inactivity (probably when battery is low?)

* Hints *

Hint01: There’s a rollback procedure in the script. Look inside and change rollback firmware accordingly

* ThanksGiving *

ThanksGiving01: Thanks to the update I found here and “the Web community”.

ThanksGiving02: Really Many thanks to the unknown (individual/group/robots/company) “who” made the really hard work of porting Android so that it could work on the IdeaPad and we can enjoy it. And thanks to any hidden help probably left for us in the code I found.

* Revisions *



10 Responses to Lenovo(R) IdeaPad A1-07 (16GB) + Android(TM) 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich AKA ICS)

  1. nestorvb says:

    Hi, with this update do you have problems with turning on/off the wifi? and another question, do you get you soft home/menu/back buttons? and finally have you tried an OTA upgrade with this method? I tried the 1.2ICS method befor I found your method, based on your answers I guess I’ll try to go back to stock and try your method. Thanks for your time and help!!! Cheers

    • zefiro says:

      Hello, thank you for your message. I suppose that “ics1.2” is just a “helper” to prepare the system and then let people install the latest ics update from lenovo (A107I0_A404_001_013_0116_US.zip). So, basically, it’s my opinion that, if you upgraded “ics1.2” after installation, now we are sharing the same version and so, to me, it is not useful to rollback (and… would it be “simple” the rollback?). But, you know, I could be wrong because I did not take an in depth look at that package. I patched A107I0_A404_001_013_0116_US.zip just because I was not confident with a software (ics1.2) whose origin was unknown to me. And this is also why I am just showing the patch I applied (not the actual product). As per the questions. I have no problems in turning on/off wifi. Maybe I noticed some problems in the past when I was using the “Airplane mode”: after long periods of inactivity in airplane mode I could not switch on wifi again. There are not the software buttons: just the hardware ones (in fact sometimes I see three dots where we should have software buttons). There is no OTA upgrade at the moment because the version I patched is just the version you can find in lenovo servers. I could not test any OTA upgrade. As a side note, I am very disappointed by the fact that I can not make A1 use ptp mode because it keeps switching back to MTP. I hope I could have been of help.

  2. happyguest says:

    zefiro, you rock! Thanks for making the official ICS available to us A1 users

    • zefiro says:

      Wow, I am happy someone could successfully use this stuff. Thank you very much 🙂 for this kind feedback! Everything was just there as you can see, I have done very little + a bit of luck 😉

  3. Anonymous says:

    Hello and thanks for taking the time to help everyone,
    just 2 overall question, how long have you been running this os?
    and the 2nd question if you were to point out any flaws what would they be?

    • zefiro says:

      Hi Someone!
      I do my best, but you see there are not many comments till now 🙂 I am using this OS and tablet since when I found this combination at an affordable price: last April (2012) more or less. Currently I use the device just for surfing the web when I find it convenient to use it: mostly to visit pages I already know well. I also had fun playing “Cut the rope”! So, to be clear, I have a limited basic usage: for deep web searches and work I prefer desktop/laptop. As a basic user and for basic usage then I find the system “very” stable, convenient for fast startup and really handy. __At that time__ a good prepackaged purchase for tasting the environment, considering all the unnecessary devices one can find in the market. I am also happy that with this brand (Lenovo) we had opportunity to jump to a newer sw version and the ability, with limited effort, to jump back and forth. Overall, I do not like the walled garden around tablet devices, but, you know, this is another story. For more technichal aspects I think I can not be of help 😦

  4. Gerry says:

    I am about to buy an A1 and I want to check to see if the update to 4.0 is running smoothly – is it an official release or something that people have managed to get it to work. I read in one forum that the resolution was now different and there were issues turning on and off wifi etc – can anyone confirm or deny these issues or tell me if there are others ? Thanks in advance

    • zefiro says:

      Hello, even though ICS runs on IdeaPad A1-07 I think it is officially unsupported, because there’s the need of a (very simple) hack to “upgrade” from the original firmware (it’s a complete new installation actually). At present times A1 is pretty obsolete in hardware specs (it is 1 year old at least). For the simple tasks (browsing) I use the IdeaPad for I consider it acceptably reliable in hardware and software(yes! I can confirm it again that it has its own crazy moments with wifi as it was noted previously). I really can not say that it runs _smoothly_: for example it is a bit slow with autocompletion in the browser address bar. In few words: probably A1 is part of the history and, unless one is tight in budget, at the moment I would look for a newer model with faster hardware.

  5. Manuel says:

    Hi, I wonder if I do that zip file ‘update.zip’ on windows 7, it will work fine.

    • zefiro says:

      If I remember it right I tried the default Windows XP zipper and it did not work. So I am not aware of later windows versions…probably with a third party zipper? Anyways I will give it a try in the week-end! Thanks!

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