Cheat codes

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Power & Game buttons for B2 and older XOs. B3 and newer have "O" at the top and "✓" (check) at the right.

A number of special actions are available by holding down game key combinations at the same time as powering on the XO laptop

Contents

Current Firmware (q2d04 and later)

  • '×' game pad key: force secure boot when in non-secure mode
  • '✓' (check) game pad key: forces a more detailed display while booting; see Startup Diagnosis
  • 'O' game pad key: alternate between boot images. Note that laptops are shipped without an alternate image; they won't have an alternate image until after first OS update is performed. (The alternate image will then be the previous image that you were running, e.g., if your laptop shipped with Build 650 and you updated to Build 656, the alternate boot image is Build 650. If you update again to Build 703, the alternate boot image becomes Build 656.)
  • '◻' (square) game pad key: Not used directly by the firmware, but might be handled by the external autoupdater script to wipe out user directory and do a factory-fresh install. (appropriate for upgrading machines straight from the factory)
  • Rocker left: invoke diagnostics. (Starting with Q2D08, you can pause between individual tests by holding down the "rotate" button - the one below the rocker pad.)
  • Rocker right: Try it and see! (hint: It's really pretty)
  • Rocker up: Graphical table of full, free, and defective blocks in internal flash.
  • Holding down all rocker buttons while starting up starts a Pong game! Make sure you let go of the buttons at the center of the rocker buttons...
  • All four game keys at once: Update the NAND FLASH from either USB, SD, or network (requires a signed fs.zip file and a NAND image file); see Secure Upgrade.

The "Rocker" is the large round button to the left of the screen, which can be rocked or tilted in any of four directions (up, down, left, or right).

If your laptop has a Developer Key or has security disabled, the Open Firmware 'ok' prompt will be available as your laptop powers on. It will display its version number and then count down for a few seconds. To access the FORTH ok prompt, you will have to press the Esc key (Image:Esc.png) during the countdown. If you don't press Esc, after the countdown the laptop will boot up normally. Note: it is easy to miss the countdown, but pressing Esc too early can disable the keyboard (requiring a reboot to re-enable it).

To disable the olpc theme-song audio on boot, press the "Volume Down" button on the keyboard many times. The setting will be remembered.

The rest of this page applies only to prototype laptops that were used by software developers before December, 2007.

After firmware q2c28 and before q2d04

The 'X' game pad key is no longer used during upgrading.
The Open Firmware ok prompt is available by default in non-secure boot. You will have to press the Esc key during the countdown. It is easy to miss the countdown, but pressing Esc too early can disable the keyboard.
  • 'X' game pad key: toggles secure and non-secure boot
  • '✓' (check) game pad key: forces a more detailed display while booting; see Startup Diagnosis
  • 'O' game pad key: boot from alternate image. At first, laptops have no alternate image.
  • Rotate button: display Underwriters Labs safety message
  • '◻' (square) game pad key: wipe out user directory and do a factory-fresh install. (appropriate for upgrading machines straight from the factory)

Before firmware q2c28

  • Rotate button: play "startup sound" at boot (after q2c27, this key will turn off sound and graphic boot up screen)
  • 'X' game pad key: interrupt boot, provide Open Firmware ok prompt. You may have to press the Esc key during the countdown (q2c25). It is easy to miss the countdown, but pressing Esc too early can disable the keyboard.
  • 'O' game pad key: boot from backup OS image, for system recovery. (not yet in a stable build)
  • Left directional pad: try out "pretty boot" (be patient, early versions show a static boot screen for a long time) (after q2c27, this key will turn off the "pretty boot")
  • Right directional pad: try it and see!

Further, the Autoreinstallation image uses a couple more special game key combinations:

  • 'X' and '✓' (check) game pad keys: skip upgrade, just write activation lease to USB key and boot. (if your XO doesn't have a check key, use the 'O' key)
  • 'X' and '◻' (square) game pad keys: wipe out user directory and do a factory-fresh install. (appropriate for upgrading machines straight from the factory)
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