FreeTSM30/FreeCalypso project started

Michael Spacefalcon msokolov at ivan.Harhan.ORG
Thu Feb 14 04:13:46 CET 2013

Hello ex-Openmoko community,

The purpose of this announcement is to let everyone interested know
that my effort to liberate the original, fully functional (non-OsmocomBB)
firmware for the Calypso GSM baseband (as found in Closedmoko GTA0[12]
smartphones and many simpler feature phones) has not been abandoned.

Lacking the source or even semi-source for the specific version of the
Calypso GSM firmware that was used by the Closedmoko company (FIC), I
am taking the alternate approach: starting from the already-liberated
version of the same Purplelabs GSM stack for a different Calypso phone
(TSM30, aka SPT2C platform), and seeking to back-port it to the
Leonardo (reference board for basic Calypso phone designs) and to the
GTA02 GSM modem.

Specifically, I have just made the first successful step on that long
journey: I have successfully recompiled the Calypso GSM firmware image
from HispaPhreak's source code release, and done so without resorting
to a Windows machine or VM - using Wine version 1.5.23 under Slackware
Linux version 13.37.  Of course it still targets TSM30 hardware, so
don't even think about flashing it into a GTA02, but it's just the
first step of an exciting journey ahead.  Previously I kept saying
that HispaPhreak's TSM30 release *seemed* to be the complete source
for the GSM stack running on the Calypso, but now we know that it
actually *is* complete - yay!

I am doing this work in a Mercurial source control repository, and of
course I share it freely with the world.  Until I get my new Solaris
ZFS-based server up, I have temporarily hosted the Hg repository here:

The README file at the top of the Hg source tree summarizes what has
been done before me, what I have done, and what I plan to do next.
The ultimate goal of this project is to back-port the code to run on
the GTA02 Calypso, producing a new GSM firmware image that comes as
close as possible to the original Closedmoko one, but is fully built
from source, no binary blobs.

Of course I am lucky to have a GTA02 unit, which has become a rare
privilege now that the stock has apparently been exhausted.  To those
who don't have a GTA02, desire one, but can't get one because of the
discontinued production and stock exhaustion: don't despair yet!

After we are done liberating the Purplelabs Calypso firmware and
getting it to run on Leonardo/GTA0x platforms (not SPT2C/TSM30), we
can then address the hardware shortage problem by building a new
Calypso-based phone motherboard - essentially do what Golden Delicious
did, but instead of going to that UMTS modem, keep the Calypso.  My
FTP site already has the complete schematics for the Leonardo board
(TI's reference design for a Calypso phone), the PCB layout of the
Calypso block can be recovered by sending a dead GTA02 board to a PCB
reverse engineering shop (think "pirate manufacturers"), and I have
some ideas as to how/where we may be able to obtain some Calypso chips
and related components.  But this is a topic for much much later -
let's get the firmware liberated first, using our existing GTA02s.
Just don't despair if you aren't one of the lucky GTA02 owners.

Viva la Revolucion,

Michael Spacefalcon,
formerly Michael Sokolov

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