Thursday, January 31, 2008

USB OTG the easy way

Some people have been writing about the USB OTG use with need to hack the cable by soldering a few wires together. Even Ars technica went the hard way of soldering a cable. This is not the way to do it my friends. On a computer-like device, the way is to 'solder software', not hardware. I found the instructions on software solution from muru and then thought:"This is still just too hard". So, what to do? Make it easy, of course.

Enter USBControl

I thought that this is worth a full hour of my time. So, today I put together a new application that you can use to switch the device (N800 or N810) between USB Host and USB OTG modes. All you need, is an USB Female-Female adaptor like this:

So, remember, that is USB A female to female adaptor. Costs pennies. Well, almost.

After you have the USB adaptor, just install ukmp from here: Garage

That version is beta. You may need to install ukmp first from here:

ukmp is my media player, but it now comes bundled with uktube (youtube downloader) and USBControl.

Finally, open USBController from your extras menu. Click on HOST. Attach USB cable and e.g keyboard to the other end and.... There you go. Nothing else needed. Open notes, xterm, whatnot and start typing. Or, remove the kb and attach a memory stick. For me, even wireless keyboards work just fine without any powered hub. Same for one memory stick, but another memory stick needed more juice than the device had.

If your peripheral needs more juice, just put a powered hub in between. Simple, huh?