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SPL Mania Hard Soft USPL What is the SPL? (Second Program Loader) TheSPL is mainly a bootloader which allows a ROM to be flashed onto yourdevice. As has been uncovered recently (or known to the more astutelonger) the SPL does more than just load and boot the ROM it setsvarious flags which can control the operation of the OS on the device.It also controls some operations between the OS and the device'shardware. SPLs come paired with shipped (or leaked) official ROMs andare meant to match the ROMs operation. Therefore, with each new ROMrelease there is likely to be a new SPL. As you read on you will learnmore about the SPL...
What types of SPLs are there? Basically there are two main types of SPLs. Hard and Soft.
AHard SPL is one that is permanently flashed in your device memory andwill boot up every time your device boots. To get into your SPL orBootloader on the Kaiser/Tilt you want to hold down the camera button(all the way) and then soft-reset the phone (or turn it on if it wasoff). You will then see a tri-color screen known as the Bootloader(a.k.a. the SPL). The SPL that is shipped with your device, or upgradedfrom an official ROM is a Hard SPL. In short, if it is loaded into yourdevice's firmware, and survives a hard-reset it is considered Hard.
ASoft SPL is a stand alone .exe that is run on your device from withinthe OS. It basically changes your OS from running Windows, toinitializing the boot loader. A Soft SPL is only loaded into RAMtemporarily and will not survive a hard-reset. To understand more aboutthese, read on...
Why is there more than one type of SPL? Thereason there are the two types of SPLs is to allow flashing of ROMsthat are not from the vendor or region your phone is from. Mostnotably, they can allow you to use "cooked" ROMS.
There are actually two types of HardSPLs:
TheSPLs that are loaded on your phone by your vendor's ROM. These are the"default" SPLs. You can most closely associate them with the "BIOS"that is shipped with a PC. The limitation of these SPLs is as I stateabove; they won't let you load ROMs from other people/vendors. Inaddition when you flash a newer ROM from your vendor your SPL can getoverwritten on your device (in essence, the vendor is doing a"firmware" upgrade to your "BIOS"). The second type of HardSPL is trulyHARD. These are the "cooked" SPLs that have been provided to us byOliPof and JockyW. These are special hacked versions of the originalvendor SPLs that allow for two things: They bypass the vendor checks onROMs, allowing you to load any ROM onto your device. This is anecessity if you want to run a cooked ROM. They disable overwrite ofthe current SPL. This is why I say they are truly HARD. So, even ifyour ROM comes with a new SPL, it won't overwrite your HardSPL. This isboth a blessing and a curse as we will see later on. Why then Soft SPLs?
SoftSPLs are really only around because of the issue mentioned above withthe HardSPLs. What if you need to flash a new SPL? HardSPL disablesthis as I mention. So, SoftSPLs were made to allow you to temporarilyload a SPL/Bootloaded from an executable on your device to change yourSPL. These SoftSPLs have the overwrite enabled which makes thispossible.
NOTE: You should never use a SoftSPL to flash a full ROM to yourdevice. You should only use them to flash a new SPL and once the newSPL is on your device, then flash the ROM!
There are two main SoftSPLs you will find. SSPL-KAIS is a SoftSPLwritten specifically for the Kaiser and JumpSPL which is a genericSoftSPL to use on multiple devices. For most people SSPL-KAIS will workhowever some will need to use JumpSPL. For more info, read on....
Why would I want to change my SPL? Asmentioned above if you want to run a "cooked" ROM on your device thenyou will need to load an SPL that allows that ROM to be loaded. Youhave two choices: Load one of the hacked HardSPLs (permanently) on yourphone to allow you to flash any ROM Using a Soft SPL (temporarily),load an SPL onto your phone (permanently)that matches the ROM you wantto load. Then load your ROM. NOTE: By permanently I mean persistent, inthat it is "flashed" on your device and will survive even a hard reset.Temporarily means it is only loaded into RAM.
Choiceone is usually easier, but it has some drawbacks that we will coverlater. Choice two is generally the best, but it is more time consuming.Not only do you need to flash a different SPL with each ROM, but youalso need to extract this SPL from the ROM first and load itseparately. Only after it is loaded can you then flash the full ROM. Inall honestly very few people actually use this technique, but I believeit is becoming more prevalent. I will provide/link to information onhow to extract an SPL later on in this thread.
DOUBLE NOTE: You should never use a SoftSPL to flash a full ROM to yourdevice. You should only use them to flash a new SPL and once the newSPL is on your device, then flash the ROM! This is why you need toextract the SPL and flash it first and then once it is "HARD" on yourdevice you can flash the ROM.
Why would I want to change my SPL back after I HardSPL? Upuntil a week ago the answer you would have probably gotten is "youwouldn't." However with the release of the Official 6.1 HTC ROM therehas been alot of speculation, and some real data inferring that forbest performance of a ROM you should use the SPL that came with a ROMor at the very least (to put it another way) you should use a newer SPLwith a newer ROM.
Thereis no definitive proof or specific results that can show you how oneSPL will make your device perform over another. I believe I haveconducted the most "scientific" experiments on this to date which youcan find here. However which SPL you use is up to you based on how youfeel it makes the device operate. I recommend however that you useeither one of the HardSPLs or the SPL that came with your ROM. It isnot recommended (at this point) to run your ROM with an SPL that is notmatched to it.
So how do I change my SPL? Ifyou have a new device and want to first put a HardSPL on the device sothat you can load and try cooked ROMs, then you should follow theprocedures given by the creators of the HardSPL. Below are the twoHardSPLs and links to their instructions: OliPof's HardSPL JockeyW'sHardSPL - look under the section in the first post titled "HardSPL withAT Command Interpreter Support" The above links provide goodinstructions, but you may want to read on for more assistance.
Assumingyou already have a HardSPL on your phone and want to flash to anotherSPL (for instance to flash the SPL that came with your ROM), there is aslightly different procedure. Basically you will need to get your handson the proper SPL and then use a SoftSPL to load this onto the phone.
Thisprocedure is actually the same procedure you would use if you wanted torevert back to the SPL that actually came with your phone. Luckily,Sirsycho has written a fantastic guide which explains this process.And, since I don't want to duplicate his efforts, you can find thatguide here.
SirSychoprovides instructions not only how to flash another Hard SPL using aSoft SPL, but also provides instructions on how to extract an SPL froma ROM. You can use those same procedures to extract an SPL from anyROM. So, in other words, you can use these procedures to flash ANY SPL,not just to revert back to your original SPL...that is just one example.
Now, for some caveats on the above procedure:
Themain problem you will likely encounter is when trying to run theSSPL-KAIS.exe on your device. Some users have found that instead ofgetting the tri-color bootscreen when running this application, thatthe screen goes white. Although the exact reasons for this are notfully known, there is a solution which JockyW has provided us in thisthread.
Iwould like to make a few amendments/comments to his instructions basedon my experiences. The first is that I have found that you don't needto remove you SIM card, but you do need to remove your SD card. Thesecond is that JumpSPL1.56-KAIS.exe will probably not work, so just useJumpSPL1.93-KAIS.exe instead.
Also, step 4 and 5 are very important. Once you have launched JumpSPL ActiveSync will not start (if it does start you should worry!) so assume that everything is ok and continue on.youwill see, after a few seconds, "USB" appear on the bottom white of thebootloader screen. If it doesn't show then either your device is notplugged into your USB port OR your SD card is still in the device.Remember that once is displays "USB" you want to unplug your USBconnection and then reconnect it a few seconds later. No message willdisplay when you plug your USB back in, and
Usingthe above procedures you should be able to flash between different SPLswith ease. To summarize I will go through the procedure I use toquickly flash between SPLs. Remember to read the above links first soyou understand the tools and basic procedures:
So why do I need to do all this back and forth flashing anyway and what does it really mean?!?! Ah,yes, so this is what it comes down to and a point of confusion amongmany users currently. The fact is that if you are happy running oneparticular ROM, you should probably just flash the SPL that shippedwith that ROM (in the case of a cooked ROM, use the SPL that shippedwith the base ROM). However, if you are a flashing junky and want tokeep switching, then you need to do some work.
- Get the SPL file (in .NBH format) that i want to flash along with the KaiserCustomRUU.exe and put it in a folder on my PC.
- Plug my device into my PC
- CopyJumpSPL1.93-KAIS.exe to my device. I use JumpSPL because I have the"White Screen" issue, if you don't, you can use SSPL-KAIS.exe.
- Take out my SD card
- Run JumpSPL1.93-KAIS.exe on my device
- Wait for the bootloader screen to appear and "USB" to show.
- Unplug my device from the USB port, wait 5 seconds, plug it back in.
- Run KaiserCustomRUU.exe and flash the SPL
Also,let me point out that you can just stick with either the OliPof orJockyW HardSPL and flash/run whatever ROM you want. If however youbelieve you are experiencing some of the freezing/lagging issues thatsome report being due to mismatched SPLs then you will want to followthe above procedures.
Thereason of switching back and forth between different SPLs is if youwant the best of both worlds. Meaning you want to flash multiple ROMsAND you want a matched SPL for stability/performance. If this is thecase you will need to reflash JockyW's or OliPof's HardSPL everytimeyou want to flash a new ROM.*
Thereasoning is that those HardSPLs are what allows you to flash a ROM notoriginally meant for your device (from your vendor/region). Once youhave flashed the HardSPL you can then flash your ROM. Once your ROM isflashed, you can then flash the SPL which matches that ROM to ensurestability. However, if you want to flash a new ROM, you have to go backto the beginning and flash the HardSPL again to allow you to loadanother ROM!*
All credit goes to respected author, for their hard work.
- Technicallyyou can do the procedure in a different manner as I mention at thebeginning of the thread. If you want to extract the SPL file andpackage it up as an NBH (as explained in SirSycho's thread). Then youcan just run my procedure above and flash the ROM's SPL file first.Then, once that ROM's SPL is on your phone you should be able to loadthe ROM. However, it is often difficult to determine which is thecorrect SPL to a cooked ROM that didn't come with an SPL therefore youmay want to stick to the HardSPL procedure.
Download Link for ALL Hard SPL, Soft SPL, USPL and so on