Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Some usefull informations and guides about Skinmanager and Skintool.

Has come the time to start explaining some important and usefull informations about:

- Skinmanager
- Skintool
- Radio Editor and the way I implemented it in skinmanager
- Nitrogen
- Personal Languages
- My skinpacks folders

The S100 Skinmanager is a software developed by me from scratch that initially allowed the S100 owners to install alternative skins/themes only but now (it's already 2 years old) it's a lot of more powerfull and will let you change the default audio player, install language files, change fonts, fake the unit ID to another model, change the function of hardware buttons, etc..

My skinpacks come compressed in a RAR archive that you will have to extract in the root of the sd card: essentially you double click on the rar file, you hit "extract" and select the letter of the sdcard.
In this way you will have a "Skinmanager" folder in the root of the sd.
To run skinmanager you simply insert the SD card in the gps slot of your unit, set the path of the navigation software to point to "\Skinmanager\Skinmanager.exe" and press the Navi button.
Here is a small video showing the installation process:

Below is the skinmanager home screen, the "Installed" label show up on the next run after you install a skin and the highlighted skin is the one currently in use.

Clicking on a skin you will be prompted to Install it if it's not present in the unit or to switch to it if it's already installed.
When you install a skin for the first time, skinmanager will create for safety reason a backup of the S100PROGRAM folder, the most important in the system. You have also an option in "skintool" to make a new backup everytime you need.

During the installation various messages and prompts will help you understand and choose the best combination for your system.
On the bottom left there is the "Exit" button to go back to the unit main software called "Platform"
The small camera at the bottom right is the screenshot tool button, clicking on it will appear a square on top right and double clicking on it will take the shot. The screenshots are saved on your sdcard.

On bottom right of the screen there is my other creation: the skintool.

At top right there is the button to access to the "Customizations" section:
Here you can replace the audio player with two alternative players: NitrogenIt support playlists files (M3U, PLS) and have a quick and comfortable music browser by folder and the MyDean version of the original player :the version showed here is in the carplay flavour but the original one have a big list view like this and a better layout than the original one.

In Customizations section you have also the newest big feature for S100:

Radio Editor
Radio Editor is a tool used to edit the Saved stations names, and to assign the button number to each station from 1 to 12. To use Radio Editor you need first to patch your system with a slightly modified version of the software, so at first run of radio editor, a script will check if your system is already patched and if not it will ask you to do it.The patch will allow the system to use unencripted and modified Language strings, to add buttons in radio section and other mods used to modify the userinterface.
After the system is patched, RadioEditor start and you can edit the station names and assign the button numbers simply selecting the station and hitting the pencil icon:

- a keyboard will show up covering the editor popup window
- you can move down the keyboard holding and sliding down your finger on the top blue line so you can see the button number tab
- set a number between 1-12, edit the station name if you wish and save
- repeat for all 12 numbers or less

When all stations are saved you can click on the main "Save" button, The software will store the stations names and numbers in the Language string file that is currently in use and it will update it in all skins. (it's important that you have set the correct time and date in the unit for this to work properly)

If you do all this correctly, you will end up having 6 station buttons at the bottom of the radio main screen and other 6 stations button in the RDS screen.

Nitrogen audio player

The Nitrogen audio player is an alternative player to the default one, it support playlists in format m3u and pls, it can be controlled by the Steering Wheel Controls and has a very quick and comfortable file browser by folder and support the album.jpg cover format.
It can be used as a standalone application or it can replace completely the standard default player.
To replace the standard player you need to go in "Customization" menu in skinmanager and choose the option to "Set as default player"; you can reverse to standard one at anytime selecting again the same option.
Nitrogen comes with some preloaded skins/themes that can be found in the Options menu.

Personal Languages
In customizations section there is tool to install a personal Language file replacing the english file with it. I added this feature because some languages are not supported by the s100 software (Swedish for example), when starting the tool you'll be taken to a file browser where you can select the string file of your Language which will replace the english one. By default the file browser will open in the path \StorageCard\Skinmanager\Extras\Patches\Strings so I suggest  you to copy your string file in that folder.
I also created a tool to replace the characters fonts because some languages use special characters that are available only in arial font.

.....more to come....

Friday, March 20, 2015

Standard skinpack for firmware 1.7.9 is buggy

This is an important advice for those people who are using the Standard Skinpack for firmware 1.7.9 or have the full pack and are using it as skinmanager base:
I  copied the wrong files for the radio stations mod and it's probably not working for you.

I already uploaded the corrected skinpack and also a patch for those who don't want to download again the entire package but just correct it them self.

This bug is NOT present in the Carplay version or either in the 1.8.9->1.10.9 versions, these versions are fine and the radio mod work correctly.

I'm really sorry about this but at least i found it :)

Monday, March 16, 2015

Standard and Carplay skinpacks 15/03/2015 Update available for fw 1.7.9-->1.10.9 (fixed......and updated to 19/03/2015)

Another update is ready in my skinpacks folders.
I have fixed some bugs in the Carplay version and ported all the features and functions to the "Standard" (let's call it in this way for now) skinpack with "ElectricBlue" and "DarkRed" aka Skin3 and skin4.

The Changelog is this:
- Fixed Skins Icons Hightlight Borders in skinmanager
- Fixed "Cancel" button in Personal String selection
- Radio Editor now save station buttons in all installed skins
- Fixed Skin1 switch      
- Fixed skin1 and skin5 install error in installed skinmanager
- Added full support for fw 1.10.9
- Fixed Opera button that wasn't working after patch
- Radio editor require patching first
- Fixed DVR missing strings when patched
- Fixed some bugs all over, too many to tell...

Essentially we need to be sure that when you run the radio editor the system is already patched, so now you will be prompted to do it if you didn't.

Applying the patch mean to replace all the executables of the system with a patched version that allow the use of unencritped strings, these strings will be modified when saving the station names by the radio editor.

When you remove the patch the system wil be restored to its original executables and its original strings, meaning that you'll loose your saved 6 buttons and if you patch again you'll have to run the editor again too.

The applied patch is taken from the latest firmware 1.10.9 so even if you ahve 1.8.9, after the patch your system will be updated to 1.10.9.
In fw 1.10.9 roadnav have added one more "Opera Mini" folder in which they have just changed the exe and one dll. Skinmanager will take care, when patching, of replacing the needed files to have it running, even if you are using opera10.

The skinpack for firmware 1.7.9 will come during this week.

Enjoy for now

UPDATE 17/03:  The skinpacks for firmware 1.7.9 are available now
UPDATE 18/03: I have fixed a small bug that won't allow to switch to skin1 and skin5 from installed skinmanager
UPDATE 19/03: More bugs fixed

To get the Skinpacks



Saturday, March 14, 2015

New Carplay skin update, Favorite Stations buttons, Personal language strings, Font type Changer etc..

Here are  some good news today!!
I uploaded a new skinpack in the Carplay folder only for now but soon it will be available for other skins too and for all the firmwares.
Let's see in detail  what's new in this package:

As you can see now skinmanager can handle five skins switching, it has a new section called "CUSTOMIZATIONS" where you have some standard skintool functions and some new ones, let's see them:

- Install Personal Language.
Will let you browse throught your sdcard for a string_yourlanguage.xml
and with it replace the english one.
After selecting the string file if exist also a font file associated to the new string, e.g.:


it will be replaced the string in all skins and the font file in the skin number specified, in this case skin5 only.
If you have not a font file, you can easily change font with another skinmanager function:

- Change Font Type
 It will let you choose between the fonts available in wince and change the type in the skin in use or in all installed skins

- Patch/Unpatch software.
All the custom languages can be installed only if you patch the system, so even if you try to change the Language before patching you'll be prompted to do it.
The patch will also provide you a fix for audio player tags and the biggest new feature of the moment:


For this great  feature and the patches we all have to thanks a russian friend ALEX O. With his great skill and knowledge he is giving us everyday something new to play with.
After patching the system you'll find 6 new buttons on bottom of the radio screen, labeled ST1, ST2, ...ST6. Running the Radio Editor you can edit the stations list, rename the stations and reassign the buttons:

Soon there will be the same for skin2, skin3 and skin4:

In carplay skin I started modifying the Ipod Section but as i don't have an ipod  I cannot test it, I need you reports guys.
I changed the audio player tags for a better showing of artist and song title and I modified a bit the BT music section to better show music info tags too.

That's it for now, I got go back finish my other skinpacks! WORK! WORK! WORK!  :D

To get the skinpack 
After payment you'll be redirected to the download link (clicking on "return to reseller site") and you'll receive an email with a memo of the link.