Summary

  • Release 1.1.0 is now live! It has some new features and enhancements that you can learn about here: http://help.gnarbox.com/software-releases/release-110-notes 
  • Users are able to download the app and firmware update today with the usual process for previous updates.
  • That being said, 1.1 comes a new type of update – the Operating System (OS) update. This is a powerful tool that allows us to update the software that gives us custom control over our custom hardware.
  • The OS Update for 1.1 will be available in about two weeks (May 25th), with reasons for this timeline referenced below.
  • This article breaks down how an OS update is different from a usual firmware update and provides some information on the roll out of Release 1.1.0’s OS Update component.

A New Type of Update

So far, we’ve been able to ship all of our updates via the usual App and Firmware update processes.Firmware updates have been small (<15 MB), and have primarily impacted our Media Server and Video Transcoder.These releases are great for improving many aspects of the user experience, but sometimes the desire to extend new features and enhancements takes us beyond the realm of the server.

With version 1.1, we wanted to release three key items that required a deeper update – one that modifies device drivers and other code in our Operating System’s user space that are not accessible via our previous workflow.

  • iPhone Integration – developing device drivers and user space application frameworks to manage mounting an iPhone as a USB device
  • SD Card Performance – tuning device drivers to support a broader range of SD and MicroSD card types at higher speeds
  • USB Drive Filesystem Partitioning Support – enhancing our platform to support GUID partition mapping

This also comes with larger update files that users will not want to download with their cellular data.So, we set out to create a system that is capable of the following:

  • Downloading an over-the-air (OTA) operating system update from our cloud servers over WiFi, directly to the GNARBOX.The app will only give instructions to the box, allowing it to connect to a router and then download the required .zip file.
  • Reading the update package and properly managing the installation of new software
  • Preserving your media files, so that a full update does not impact the files you’ve stored on your GNARBOX

This process has been proven out, but is not fully tested to our satisfaction just yet.In the next two weeks we plan to test the update mechanism over 1000s of iterations to ensure its stability.

As always, we are happy to speak with you about any questions you have on our chat engine at GNARBOX.com!

GNARBOX Team

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