Android – Understanding, Modifying, Building and Installing

Once we have understood how our device boots up, we will then cover the technical aspects of how to flash our device. As in the boot sequence, the 3 main components that need to be transferred -”flashed”- to the board, are: The Bootloader, the Kernel and the OS (Android). We cover them in different posts, continuing here with the OS – Android.

Once the boot loader has loaded the kernel, the following step is mounting the root file system (Please refer here for further details on the boot sequence). In this post we will go through the process of compiling the Android system and uploading it image to our device. Sometimes, this image needs to be modified. Refer to this post in order to get more information on how to mount/unmount the Android system image.

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Mount / Unmount Android System images

There are many reasons for wanting to unpack Android’s system image. The most obvious is modifying it. System.img is in the end an ext4 loop file system (such as the Linux system image), that can be mounted, modified and repacked in order to be burned afterwards in an embedded system. Android’s system image can be obtained from the google factory images.

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