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PostPosted: Sun May 30, 2010 6:35 am 
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Hi Y'all,

I get the sense that a lot of you here are not the average consumers Archos targeted. You seem more adventurous, and like to test limits. So, I suspect, you are going to find your 7HTs will slow down and/or crash, if you haven't already had this happen.

Well, I've been there on the early flaky firmwares of the Archos 5IT. I've learned enough with the 5IT that I have very stable experiences with it now. With the 7HT I'm using the same principles and techniques I learned with the 5IT and having very very few slow downs and crashes. Here I'll share some of those principles and techniques. But first:

Why the Slow Downs and Crashes

(If you just have to skip all this, scroll down to the Stability Strategies section)

1. Android History
Android is a very young OS, a baby less than 2 years old. Google modified a mature OS, Linux, to create Android with intention of running it on cell phones with small screens. Because Android is Open Source, unlike the iPhone, Windows Mobile, or the RIM OS, it became popular with developers and cell phone companies very quickly.

Our 7HTs run Android version 1.5, Cupcake. Versions 1.6 (the 5IT's OS), 2.0, 2.1 and 2.2 are available, too. According to reports I read last week Cupcake is still the most widely used Android Version. This year for the first time Android holds the second place in devices sold, RIM (Blackberrys) is first and iPhone is third. The Google Market (what Google calls the Android Market) which is Googles official Repository (or Store) now has over 50.000 Apps, half of what Apples Apps Store has. But Google got to 50.000 in a lot less time than Apple.

Because Android is such a nice Open Source OS, Tablet, Netbook, and Laptop manufacturers have started using it on their products. Archos was one of the first Tablet companies to offer an Android Tablet - the Archo 5 Internet Tablet. But Google didn't design Android for Tablet computers. The 5IT was very very flaky when Archos released it (think Windows Vista).

There were issues Archos had to overcome to run Android on their 5 inch Tablet and eventually the 7HT:
1. Screen Size - Android was not designed to run on an 800x480 screen and a number of Android Apps failed on the 5IT for that reason.

2. Phone - Android expected to see phone hardware and the Archos tablet did not have it.

3. Hardware Buttons - Google wanted hardware buttons for functions like: Home, Back, and Menu. Archos Tables do not have those and they use some of the screen to provide software implementations of those buttons.

4. Storage - Cell phones have very little physical space. (Good luck on finding a cell phone with a 5 inch screen.) The Android Operating System uses Internal Memory (not the same thing as what Archos calls Internal Memory) for managing the OS. MicroSD cards provided the only storage for cell phone users to save photos, videos, music and such.

Archos had plenty space in their Tablets so they created them with Hard Drives, HD, versions and with Solid State Drives, SSD, versions for User Storage. Then they added a microSDHC slot for the SSD versions. This addition kinda confused things because Android developers assumed SD Card was the only place the user had, and they shoud write to, for storing files.

5. Memory Management - Android assumes it's on a cell phone which is almost always on. So Android Apps almost never close. It also assumes the primary use of the cell phones is making phone calls. Running Android Apps is secondary and subordinate to phone calls, so Android can stop all the Apps to handle phone calls. Google didn't expect Android users to be running a bunch of Apps and not making phone calls. So they didn't spend much effort on managing the memory of a bunch of running Apps.

Along comes Archos with their 5 inch Tablet and no phone. Archos was desperate for money so the Archos Execs locked their Devs in sound proof rooms and release the 5IT way too early. Back in Oct 2009 folks like me who bought them are installing and running Apps like crazy on the 5IT. Then we experienced the joy of the 5ITs bogging down, freezing and crashing. Really bad reviews. A lot of returned 5ITs.

A bunch of us hung in there, and with the help of the ArchosFans Support Forum, with some Archos Staff participating, we've gotten plenty of Firmware upgrades from Archos, great techniques from our discussions and the tools to manage memory from some cool Android Apps..

Eventually, those, like me, who hung in are getting very stable, satisfying experience from our 5ITs. I was so involved in those discussions that some members of the 5IT Forum asked me to write a 5IT Stability page for our Wiki. New owners of 5ITs are still directed to that Wiki page.

That's it for the history. I feel it was important to share it with you so you'd get a feeling for where we've been and why we're here.

2. Today - The 7HT
The rumors spread that Archos was going to make a 7IT with more features than the 5IT. Finally came the announcement of the 7HT and most of us on the 5IT forum, including me, were very disappointed. I even bought a 9 inch tablet which promised features like the 7IT. It didn't work out. More and more I focused on the features Archos advertised. I watched the prerelease videos by Charbax and others.

I pre-ordered on 22 Apr. All I wanted from the 7HT was an eBook Reader, a Photo Album a web surfer, and a Movie Viewer. And that's what I got out of the box - it does everything I wanted. This is the first computer I've owned which I consider like an appliance. I didn't have to tweek it out of the box, but I knew how to from my 5IT experience.

So, more and more, I ventured into the 7HT Forum, and I start working on the 7HT portion of our Wiki using the 5IT pages Buster developed as models. My 7HT arrived on Monday 24 May one day early. I see a whole bunch of new names show up on our AF Forum excited about the 7HT, and folks playing with the 7HT in ways Archos with their 8 page User Guide never really prepared us for.

Playing with my new 7HT I realize if folks venture off the path where Archos directed them, then they are going to have the same stability problems we encountered with the 5IT. If you've read this far, here, finally - Adventurous Pioneers, are some strategies for improving your experience with the 7HT.

Stability Strategies
Here I assume you've just opened the box. If you've moved on skip to where you come in but you might want to come back here later.

1. The Box is Open
    - If your read English, read page 3 of the User Guide before you plug your 7HT to power.
    - Connect - your 7HT to a power source
    - Stop - using the Installation Wizard immediately after Calibration
    - Set - your 7HT aside to fully charge. The screen will dim in a minute or so. After about an hour to an hour and a half, (for me) the Red Led will turn Yellow and you can ...
    - Complete - the Installation Wizard.
    - Do not run any Apps
    - Download - and copy the .img Firmware to update to your 7HT following the Archos instructions. This update replaces EVERYTHING on your 7HT so there's no point in running any Apps before you do this.
    - Your done - with 1. The Box is Open

2. Turn on Selection Sound
Tablet devices are computers which receive most of their input through the screen. When busy, like other computers, Tablets stack their input in a queue for processing later when they're not busy. As a new user you don't know how long it takes the 7HT to process your command.

The 7HT, like the 5IT, provides a way to tell you when it's too busy to process your command. You can set a Selection Sound to occur whenever you tap the screen to request the 7HT to do something for you. If you don't hear that sound your 7HT is busy and further tapping won't help and can even make things worse. Here's how to turn on the Selection Sound:

    1. Tap - the Menu Button (square button at the far right of the bar at the top of the screen)
    2. Wait - for the White Menu Bar to appear at the bottom of the screen
    3. Tap - the Settings item at the far right of the Menu
    4. Wait - for the Setting screen to appear
    5. Tap - the second item - Sound & display
    6. Wait - for the Sound & Display screen
    7. Tap - the third item - Selection sound
    8. Notice - the Green Check mark indicating the item is selected.
    9. Your done - tap the Home icon at the far left of the Status bar at the top of the screen.

Now every time you tap the screen to make a selection you'll hear a sound.

If you do not hear the sound STOP and WAIT for the 7HT to catch up with you then you will hear the sound.

3. Install the ATMF App and Widget
ATMF is short for Advanced Task Manager Free. This App lets you end any App, or all Apps, running on your 7HT except Apps you put into an Exclude List. It also includes a Widget called "Advanced Task Manager Free" in the Widget list and "Press to end" under its icon on a Home Screen.

When your 7HT slows down you can tap the "Press to end" widget icon and ATMF will end all running Apps except those on your Exclude List. Then it displays a message telling you how many applications it ended. I have this widget in all my Home Screens. I tap this widget A LOT.
    1. Download ATMF - Go to the Task Managers section of our Wiki's Applications page, click: Here. Download it to your PC. The file name is: Advanced Task Manager Free 1.6.1.apk
    2. Attach your 7HT to your PC - So you can copy the ATMF file to your 7HT
    3. Copy - the file, Advanced Task Manager Free 1.6.1.apk, to your 7HT root (not in any folder)
    4. Detach the 7HT from your PC - Go sit down and relax
    5. Open the Files App - Wait for the Files screen
    6. Select "Internal Memory" - Wait for the Internal Memory screen
    7. Scroll Until - you find the file: Advanced Task Manager Free 1.6.1.apk
    8. Select the File - Wait until the install screen appears
    9. Select Install - Wait until the install is done
    10. Select Home - Tap the Home icon in the top left of the Status Bar

4. Set up your Exclude List
Initially there is at least one App which you want to place on the ATMF Exclude list: A Wizard. This App is the "Archos Wizard" and experience on the 5IT has shown that bad things can happen if you don't exclude it. Here's how to place it on the ATMF Exclude List:
    1. Open the Apps Menu - Tap the "Apps Tab" on the right of your Home Screen and wait for the Apps menu to appear
    2. Open the ATMF App - The ATF App should be the first app on the top row of the Apps Menu screen. It has a blue gear icon and is labeled "Advanced Task Manager Free": TAP IT
    3. Wait - for the ATMF screen. It will have 5 Tabs
    4. Notice - the far left tab labeled Apps
    5. Find - the Wizard App. It should be at or near the top. Scroll to find it if reuired
    6. Press - and hold over the word "Wizard" until the Actions Menu appears
    7. Look - Down the list until you see the Exclude item: TAP IT
    8. Notice - When the ATMF screen returns a RED X icon replaced the grayed out check icon
    9. Your done - here. Tap the Home icon in the status bar to return to the Home Screen.

5. Install the "Press to end" Widget

This is the last step. Once you do this you can end all running Apps any time you can tap the Press to end widget. I do this:
    - Immediately after my 7HT powers on
    - Before I Suspend my 7HT
    - When I'm finished, for now, using any App including Settings and Files.
    - Anytime I feel I might have forgotten to do it earlier
    - Whenever my 7HT is going slower than I think it should, which isn't very often.

If you've followed the directions in step 4 for the Exclude List you should be looking at a Home Screen and you'll see the Blue Gear icon for ATMF to the right of the Home icon in the Status Bar. From there here's how to install "Press to end":

    1. Press - and hold an icon-free area in the middle of the Home Screen.
    2. Wait - until the Add to Home screen menu appears, then lift your finger or stylus
    3. Notice - the second item is Widgets - TAP IT
    4. Wait - until the Choose widget menu appears
    5. Notice - at or near the top is Advanced Task Manager Free: TAP IT
    6. Wait - until the Home Screen appears
    7. Notice - A Blue Gear icon labeled "Press to end" rests on your Home Screen
    8. Notice - ATMF application icon which should still be in the left of the Status Bar at the top
    9. Tap - the "Press to end" icon
    10. Wait - until you see the ATMF message telling how many applications it ended
    11. Notice - the Blue Gear icon in the Status Bar is gone. ATMF is just another App which "Press to end" ended. You don't need to to have it running all the time. Only when you want to add or remove an App from the Exclude List. Or when you want to end just one or a few Apps.
    12. Sit - back and congratulate yourself - you're done! You can now now manage your running Tasks to provide you more stable, hence, enjoyable 7HT experiences.

After discussion dies down for this topic I'll put most of it's content in our Wiki page: Archos 7HT Stability.

Please point out typos and confusing text. This has been a lot of typing and I'm done for now.

Aloha,

Allen

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PostPosted: Sun May 30, 2010 11:01 pm 
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Aloha Y'all,

In his Topic: When internal memory comes down under 10mb, it crashes, tapettersen reports of interesting events if you install too many Apps for the 7HT to handle.

IMO Archos started some sloppy terminology by calling the Internal Storage in our 7HT "Internal Memory". On the 5ITs they call it "Internal Storage". Not knowing much about Android internals I'm still confused about what Google and Archos mean by Storage vs Memory.

But know this the Internal Memory where you see your files and folders is NOT same as the internal memory which tapettersen or the message on your 7HT refer to. Rest assured you have not filled up your 8G 7HT with files when you see this message.

What to do
1. Uninstall Some Apps via Settings
    1. Tap - the Menu icon on the Home Screen
    2. Tap - the Settings icon in the menu bar
    3. Tap - the Applications item in the Settings List
    4. Tap - the Manage applications item
    5. Tap - An App item you are willing to uninstall for now
    6. Tap - the Uninstall button in the Storage section

Repeatedly uninstall Apps until you no longer get the "low memory" message. Don't worry you can them all back later when you have an Application Manager App installed. I wouldn't uninstall a Bundled App unless I knew how to easily reinstall it and now I don't.

2. Install an Application Manager
Download and install AppManager from our Wiki's Apps page, click this: Link.

3. Use AppManager for non-Bundled Apps
AppManager will allow you to Uninstall and Backup all Apps you've installed. It does not see the Apps bundled with the 7HT either pre-installed or installed via an Archos Firmware update or upgrade.

Once you've intstalled AppManager use the Backup Menu item to Backup all your Installed Apps. AppManager stores its backup in Internal Memory/appmanager, which you can find using the Files App.

After you install new Apps you can backup just those Apps all at once or individually.

When you upgrade an App and back it up, AppManager will have multiple files for the App. Each backup file has the version number in the file name.

When you Uninstall an App with AppManager you still have the Backup file in the appmanager folder.

4. Reinstalling Backed Up Apps
You can reinstall an App by finding it, then tapping it, in the appmanager folder.

I'll get this all written up and in the Wiki when I get time.

Allen

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PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2010 10:47 pm 
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One thing that contribute to initial unstableness is amount of music.
I had slow 16gb class 2 microSD full with music that might have taken long time to sort.

Things get little bit more stable after first hour.

There are also 2 audio players. Audio Player and Music. If you accidentally ends up using them simultaneous, it probably add to sluggish etc.

Other thing is, new firmware seems slightly better... better response etc.

I think it is dawn right criminal for archos to use same version number for different firmware. But then, if they had 100 different version in few weeks might be embarrassing and shows item is not mature enough.


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PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2010 11:11 pm 
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Very quickly we knew of the screw up and very quickly Archos issued a fix.

Remember the release of Windows Vista? Talk about Screw Ups!

Allen

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 3:09 am 
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I agree...
I think vista was intentionally compiled with debug mode with no optimization.
That way computer had to be upgraded which lead to more computer sales.

Of course window 7 is barely better than xp and if they ms went from xp to w7 then people would only notice slight improvement.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:45 am 
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I really like windows 7. It has the friendly user interface of a mac, but still the great openness of a pc. Hell, setting up a network is night and day between xp and 7.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 5:28 am 
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And having both I like WinVista better than WinXP. Of course, I've turned off User Account Security, and Indexing except for my 2T drive.

Allen

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 6:04 am 
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Diknak wrote:
I really like windows 7. It has the friendly user interface of a mac, but still the great openness of a pc. Hell, setting up a network is night and day between xp and 7.


You could always have used third party user interface.

And your experience level has change as well as now days network is built into all the computer.

I would say, if you have installed network for xp netbook, you would not be making such statement about couple min process.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 7:15 am 
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Hi Dolphin,

I've configured networks on PCs, Minis, and MainFrames for 30 years and I have no idea what you're talking about.

Would you please explain in more detail like a Pro to an educated layman?

Thanks,

Allen

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 8:25 am 
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AllenPapapetrou wrote:
Hi Dolphin,

I've configured networks on PCs, Minis, and MainFrames for 30 years and I have no idea what you're talking about.

Would you please explain in more detail like a Pro to an educated layman?

Thanks,

Allen


Process of setting up network on a NEW windows xp computer system only takes couple minutes. Other guy claiming "night and day" which is figurative meaning that it was difficult on xp and easy on w7 for him. Yours and his memory from long past is not based on core operating system, but on installation of add on card, driver, and configuration etc. which took longer than couple min.

In general, if I compare computer with xp and w7 side by side, there are only minor variation and improvement.


Last edited by dolphin888 on Tue Jun 01, 2010 8:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 8:44 am 
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For me the process of configuring networking on every PC I've had since I had my first home LAN with a gateway Linux box, a Mac Box and a WinNT Box have been relatively simple tasks.

The first Linux networking I put in was at work and was Token Ring where I had to compile a Slackware distro . . . that was a pain - one wrong answer and you started over

The last pain was the home LAN with the Linux Box a Dialup Gateway to the internet and the File Sharing mediator between the Mac Box and the WinNT box. That was like 1997.

Since Linux in 1995 at work, and 1997 at home, networking PCs has been very simple. Regardless of the OS.

What's so cool about the 7HT is there is nothing to networking: Simple WiFi setup to your router. Then for file sharing - ES File Explorer finds your computer on the LAN and you just have to set the permissions on your PC - can't get much simpler than that.

Allen

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 9:01 am 
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AllenPapapetrou wrote:
What's so cool about the 7HT is there is nothing to networking: Simple WiFi setup to your router. Then for file sharing - ES File Explorer finds your computer on the LAN and you just have to set the permissions on your PC - can't get much simpler than that.

Allen

Lucky for you, you never had ES file explore until recently.

And it still have bug so that I cannot access by network name

\\servername\music...

//servername/music will allow ADD, but accessing will give me error

But at least they allow access with ip address now.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 9:13 am 
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Dolphin, what OS are you running?

Allen

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:09 pm 
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Reinstalling the latest firmware on my 7HT fixed a lot of issue and extended my battery life 4X, It's amazing.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 9:32 pm 
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AllenPapapetrou wrote:
Dolphin, what OS are you running?

"Linux with a graphic shell extension" is what I gather the streetwise kids are calling it these days.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 11:03 pm 
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MrFoo wrote:
AllenPapapetrou wrote:
Dolphin, what OS are you running?

"Linux with a graphic shell extension" is what I gather the streetwise kids are calling it these days.


LMAO

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 03, 2010 1:46 am 
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Is it just me or is the Advanced Task Manager Free App link down?

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 03, 2010 2:15 am 
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royd wrote:
Is it just me or is the Advanced Task Manager Free App link down?

Hi royd,

Nope, it's me! I've been really busy. I need to post instructions, some of the links are http: directly to the .apk file. ATMF is one:

On a PC, right-click the download link. Then select "Save Link As" or "Save Target" or whatever your browser has do let you save a file. Save it, then copy it to your 7HT, and install.

From the Browser on your 7HT the download renames the file from .apk to .html. Use the Files App to rename it back, then install.

I'll put info on our Wiki page when I get the time. For now, I'm going to pick up my new Hawaiian 7HT Case.

Alen

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 05, 2010 12:50 am 
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Good, just what I was loking for. I just got my 7HT and I was already having slowdown issues, I have a. htc 8525 and I'm always going to the memory settings to stop all programs and I was wondering if there was such options available for the 7ht, this should improve experience, thanks a lot.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 6:21 am 
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AllenPapapetrou wrote:
Dolphin, what OS are you running?

Allen

I currently have android, window 7, vista, xp,ubuntu,kubuntu,osx.

Now days xp network installation is couple min, not hard at all like original poster implied.


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