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Special Keys and Hidden Menus


Look into my Eye
Mar 6, 2010
Riverside, CA
Hopefully root will come soon; however until then, it would be nice to find all of the special keys and commands that do stuff to the Backflip. I have seen each of these in many different places and wanted to put them in one. So far, this is what I have found. If you know of more, post it and I'll add it here. I did not figure thses out, just putting them in one place for reference. I hope to add more menus like *#*#4636#*#* (this does not work on the backflip) soon

Safe Mode
With the phone off press and hold the Menu key on the keyboard (not the screen) and turn on the phone. Keep holding the menu button until you are at the desktop. You will see the "Safe Mode" in the bottom left corner letting you know.

Safe mode disables and removes all non OEM apps (they are still there just hidden and turned off) This will allow you to use the phone, remove the apps or Hard Reset if an app starts causing issues with your phone.

Bootloader USB Init (used for root or flash?)
With the phone off press and hold the J and D keys on the keyboard and turn on the phone. Keep holding the J and D keys until the phone starts. It will go to a blue screen within 2-3 seconds of starting the phone.

Not sure yet, most likley another way to flash/restore the firmware.

Fast Boot (For hard reset if you loose your MotoBlur sign in Info)
With the phone off press and hold the camera key and turn on the phone. Keep holding the camera key until the phone starts.

Option 1. Press the Vol Down (Menu is backwards) to enter Verbose Boot (it will sit at that screen for 15 seconds). Wait about 30-45 seconds after the ! triangle appers. Tap the lower right corner of the screen (just above the arrow head on the back icon) to bring up the flash update, reboot or hard reset menu.

Option 2. Press the Vol Up (Menu is backwards) to enter fast boot mode.

Not sure yet

From backflipforums.com
Holding Down Keys At Boot
I am experimenting with holding down certain keys / key combinations during power-on (such as D+J to enter bootloader mode). Perhaps there's a hidden way into some kind of test mode or dev-phone mode.. I will post results here. I'm also checking to see if the phone appears on the USB bus as a different (perhaps debug-enabled) device each time. Note that "failed" just means that the handset booted normally.

D + J - blue Bootloader USB Init screen - phone appears as "Motorola Flash Interface" - need to experiment with this and see what kind of things I can do here. The Power button will reboot the phone from this screen.

D (naturally, I tried this first) - failed

Camera Button - Pressing and holding the camera button during power-on (until the phone tells you to release it) boots into a partial USB fastboot mode (no cable connectivity though) - provides options "Verbose boot" and recovery. If you don't press anything for 10 seconds, it boots the phone normally. If you choose Verbose boot (by holding down VOLUME UP for a few seconds) it goes to a blue fastboot screen, which says fastboot is disabled due to security. No apparent way out of this blue screen without yanking the battery. If you do the Recovery Mode (by holding down VOLUME DOWN for a few seconds - strangely, it will still say "VOLUME UP KEY PRESSED") then it goes to a firmware flashing screen. I imagine it is expecting a valid update.zip to be in the root of the SD card. No apparent way out of this one without pulling the battery as well.

*EDIT 05/29*: While in the triangle-exclamation-mark flashing screen, I am experimenting with different ALT-key combinations. Obviously, ALT-W will do a wipe, ALT-S will apply an update.zip file, but I found other(s):

- ALT-Y - quick reboot
- ALT-. - same as <UP>
- ALT-OK - same as <DOWN>

Oops, I accidentally wiped my phone by hitting ALT-ENTER. :p

Addendum: Funny, I can make the "VOLUME UP KEY PRESSED" message appear more than once (along with the timeout dot-dot-dots) if I hold down the Volume Up and then repeatedly press the Camera button at the same time, while it's telling me I have the 10-seconds choice timeout. After 10 seconds of screwing around like this, it went into a normal boot. I will experiment with this a bit more. I also took a brief look at the fastboot source code, but I haven't been able to find any apparent sneakies yet.

Power Button - failed
Volume Up Button - failed
Volume Down Button - failed

Menu Key (squares) - Boots phone in safe mode! - maybe something here..!
Home Key - failed
Back Key - failed
ALT - failed
Search - failed
AT&T Deathstar - failed

I'll edit this post and add to it as I go along. Lots of reboots ahead of me...


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