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Thread: Hacking HP QuickWeb (SplashTop)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Lightbulb Hacking HP QuickWeb (SplashTop)

    Inspired by the ExpressGate thread I decided to take a shot or two at HPs QuickWeb found in newer HP laptops.

    So far I've figured out the following:
    • It seems to boot from the Windows 7 partition, boot directory is "C:\SwSetup\QuickWeb\QW.SYS"
    • As expected you can create sqx files in exactly the same as with ExpressGate
    • All sqx files in C:\SwSetup\QuickWeb\QW.SYS seems to autoload in alphabetical order
      This means you can overwrite the original Skype client without removing it by increasing a number or something - you get the idea
    • If you bork any of the original apps (installation incomplete error), run the QuickWeb repair tool from Windows
      It will only overwrite the standard files
    • All of your WiFi passwords are automatically stored in plain text in WifiInfo.ini
      Not that it's too hard to get them from Windows (haha), but I don't like the idea of unencrypted passwords
    • xterm not included

    The sad part is that I have yet to get a terminal interface.
    I've tried statically compiling rxvt from source and modifying the runskype script in va-skype- (/skype a really odd path to place binaries in though), but this just seems to break Skype... probably a compilation error.
    Anyone know a quick way to get a hold of the rxvt binary from Puppy Linux?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010


    After getting binaries from Puppy Linux, a lot of confusion and exhausting tests I finally got it; I had forgotten to "chmod 755 rxvt"!

    Anyway, QuickWeb comes with ash as default shell, but unlike ExpressGate it's using Xorg and as far as I can tell also parts of Gnome.

    I have a prebuilt package for replacing the Skype launcher with xterm (don't worry, you can still start Skype by typing skype2 at the prompt) if anyone's interested, but don't know if I'm allowed to upload it here?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010


    Edit 2:
    So I extracted some fun info about QuickWeb:
    • uname -a
      Linux Splashtop #1 SMP Mon Feb 8 14:54:05 CST 2010 i686 GNU/Linux
    • cat /proc/cmdline
      initva=skype baseva=scan MPIDX=SwSetup/QuickWeb/ dvmiofs.vapi=1,0x00000072,0x0000007C i8042.noloop=1 vga=869 loglevel=0 pad=033C5EF2 root=UUID=628AA19D8AA16E6B region=41D location=locationid defconf=sv_SE
    • whoami
    • lsmod
    • cat /proc/version #Pretty much the same as uname -a
      Linux version (www-data@build-server2) (gcc version 4.2.4 (Ubuntu 4.2.4-1ubuntu4)) #1 SMP Mon Feb 8 14:54:05 CST 2010
    • apt-get --version
      apt for linux i386 compiled on Feb 26 2007 16:19:57
      Supported modules:
      *Ver: Standard .deb
      *Pkg: Debian dpkg interface (Priority 20)
      S.L: 'deb' Standard Debian binary tree
      S.L: 'deb-src' Standard Debian source tree
      Idx: Debian Source Index
      Idx: Debian Package Index
      Idx: Debian dpkg status file
    • cat /etc/apt/sources.list
      ## SCDN Updater package.gz source list
      deb HPIMI00 released

    Note that everything runs as root which is really bad practice, maybe ExpressGate does the same?

    Interesting how they used gcc 4.2 since it's quite old, a quick package search suggests they either explicitly used 4.2 or compiled on a Hardy system.
    The confusing part is that I have apt-get (with dead link repos), am I really supposed to have this in SplashTop?

    This got me thinking; is (this version of) SplashTop actually based on Ubuntu?
    To all Ubuntu hackers out there; what are the tell-tale signs of Ubuntu?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007


    Basically you can name your new package as you like, old ST versions just parsed for the prefix va*. The suffix sqx does did even matter, if you want to disable it you have to change the prefix. ExpressGate is the same, just different branding. ST is really boring compared to a full featured system, i just hacked it a while a ago to test it on my own hardware/virtual machine. I never bought "supported" hardware to do so. Best: get rid of it, packages are completely outdated and the tools are patched to have got only limited features. That everything runs as root is also stupid, no normal Linux distro would do that when you install it onto hd.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010


    Thanks Kano.
    Well I was looking into replacing most of the stuff with Debian Lenny, though I imagine the kernel would be a bit risky since I have no idea how my HP will behave when it can't boot ST before the BIOS... since I most likely won't get it right the first time

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