LS-GL Custom Firmware Development

From NAS-Central Buffalo - The Linkstation Wiki
Revision as of 21:07, 11 November 2006 by Ramuk (Talk | contribs) (Oh1jty's Firmware - version 1.03-0.49-jtymod2)

Jump to: navigation, search
Any questions?

LS-GL Custom Firmware Development
This wiki page is to document the work and progress in developing a custom firmware for the LS Pro (LS-GL) The goal of this page is to sort out the roadmap and accomplishments towards creating an OpenLink and FreeLink for the LS-GL. Though this page is mainly for developers, anyone is free to add their work.

Nuvola apps important.png 

The methods and information described below are intended for advanced users. Much of the information has not been verified by the development team. As a result, all users must exercise caution when performing any of the described methods. Failure to do so may result in a bricked Linkstation.

Please fix and update these sections. Also, please correct any grammar and spelling errors. Thanks -- jonli447

Using the Firmware Updater

It is aparent, like all of the Linkstations, that the firmware does not want to update the firmware if the LS-GL reports the same firmware version as the the one to be that's to be sent to the LS-GL (i.e. a modified firmware). The work around is to:

  • Add to lsupdater.ini
  • Change in lsupdater.ini
VersionCheck = 1


VersionCheck = 0
  • Open linkstation_version.txt in any text editor (i.e. vi). Edit either the BOOT=, KERNEL=, INITRD=, or ROOTFS= (this is the main firmware and filesystem) to choose what to update by changing the version to a higher number.
    • i.e. by setting rootfs to a higher number, the filesystem will get updated, but uboot, kernel, and initrd won't get updated.
  • Steps originally drafted by Georg.

Note: We are not positive if only one segmet (i.e. rootfs) will get updated. This method must be fully tested to find this out.

Telnet Access

We have successfully managed to create a telnet-enabled firmware for the LS-GL. Fortunately for us, the LS-GL already came with a telnet binary in the stock firmware. Telnet can be enabled by uncommenting line 42 in /etc/init.d/rcS and repackaging hddrootfs.

There is a pre-made telnet enabled firmware available at here.

Note: The above firmware package does not enable root access. For users that already have root access, this firmware is fine. There is testing being done for a telnet enabled firmware that includes root access. See below. Also, for repackaging the firmware, see Create_a_custom_firmware_image. The current firmware password is:


Removing Root Password

We are currently working on removing the Melco root password in the stock firmware. Some users have managed to do this, but the development team as a whole has not agreed to which method to use.

Manual Method

The general idea is to open connect the sata drive to a desktop running a linux distribution (i.e. Knoppix or Ubuntu). Then remove root password in /etc/shadow.

Detailed Steps

1) Connect the hard drive to a pc running Linux (i.e. Knoppix boots directly from cd/dvd)

2) Find out how it was recognized. (i.e. in Knoppix there are some shortcuts on the desktop).

3) Open a shell/commandline/terminal.

4) Mount the second partition of the sata hdd to somewhere.

5) Delete everything on the partition

6) Download the telnet enabled hddrootfs.img located in this zip

7) Unzip will be prompted for a password. it is:


8) Untar the resulting file to the second partition:

tar xzvf <file> <path_where_you_mounted_the_first_partition> 

9*) mount /dev/sda1 (assuming the sata drive is the first special drive connected on the pc) somewhere

  • extract conf_saved.tgz, remove password in etc/shadow to look like:

10*) re-tar the contents of conf_saved.tgz, replace conf_saved.tgz to /dev/sda1, umount

(*)These steps still need to be tested further!!!

  • Steps originally drafted by mindbender.

Heinz' Method

Heinz made a script to automatically convert a downloaded stock firmware into a telnet enabled firmware with root access. The script is made for the German firmware. The script is available here. Heinz also made a pre-made firmware package with his script. It can be downloaded here.

  • Testing Needed

The script mainly does the following things:

  • retrieving the actual firmware update from the buffalo site.
  • unzip the archive to a tmp directory
  • modify linkstation_version, because the updater only updates "newer" firmwares. It seems this can be overwritten in the debug mode (see georg's changes)
  • for modifing the installed image. it is unzipped (using the current password)
  • then to start the (already installed) telnetd, some comments in the rcS script are removed.
  • because the password of the root login is not known, it needs to be removed. Modifing /etc/shadow had not worked, so currently we change the web interface, which runs with root permissions, to do it for us.
  • reverse the whole zip/tar process to create a useable firmware update again.


Georg's Method

Georg modified Heinz' automatic script. For those with access, the script it is available in LS_Pro Temporary Upload Folder for Telnet Enabled Firmwares

  • Testing Needed



Cross Toolchain

Todo: Import information from forum.

Native Toolchain

  • Yugi has managed to get a working native toolchain. It is available here

Todo: Import information from forum here.


  • Development for the LS-GL is too young. Official Openlink development has not started yet.

Oh1jty's Firmware - version 1.03-0.49-jtymod2




lb_worm has managed to Debanize the LS-GL. Though this is not an official FreeLink yet, it is a tremendous start. See Debian for more information.

Todo: Import information from forum.

Development Tools

  • For the same reasons as OpenLink, development tools has not been created yet.

Other Development

GPL Kernel

lb_worm is currently working on the kernel project. See Outlook on LS Pro Kernel Development

Todo: Import information from forum.

Custom Updater

See Opensource_Firmware_Updater and LS-GL Custom Updater Thread for more information.

Todo: Import information from the forum here.


This is just idea at the moment. See Optware IPKG Feed Poll


Some binaries (i.e. wget) have been compiled for the LS-GL.

Please post successfully binaries that should be included in an OpenLink here.

  • wget

User Accomplishments

Please post accomplishments that don't fit into the above categories here

  • Someone got ssh up and running (sorry, I can't remember who...please give credit if you know).

Related Forum Topics

Todo: Add information to above sections.