View Full Version : Flashing LEDs On WM5 PDA Get Me Down

November 16th, 2007, 04:04 PM
I've been trying to figure out how to stop the damned LED's from flashing on my Acer n321 but can't figure out how to do it.

I know that the culprit is LED.DLL but if I edit the registry and make it point to xLED.DLL I can't activate my wifi.

It's so annoying. I want to leave it on, plugged into the cradle, while I'm watching a movie so that when I pick it up I can use the remote straight away... it will also pick up my email and alert me that way. But with the green flashing power light and the blue flashing wifi light it's too darned distracting. I have to put something over the top of it if I am watching TV.

If only I could disable the LED's while NR is running it would be awesome. Ron, is there any chance there is something in your development API that you could force the LED's to turn off? I'm sure others out there are narked at the annoying little... err... flashers!

Rob H
November 16th, 2007, 05:46 PM
Personally I'd just put some insulting tape over it - sorry, insulating tape. That or paint over it. The problem is that I don't think there's any standard API to control this sort of thing. You could also try asking Acer to see if there's a utility to turn it off.

November 16th, 2007, 06:30 PM
I've been trawling the net and the registry hacks I've tried don't work. The best suggestion is to buy some black nail polish and paint over the top of them... Looks like I'm going shopping for nail polish tomorrow. I'm sure the sales help will think I'm a 46 year old goth! :rolleyes:

Rob H
November 17th, 2007, 02:25 AM
I'd be very hesitant to use nail polish - the solvents might damage the plastic. I'd look at using water-based acrylics instead.

November 17th, 2007, 05:05 AM
Hmmm... didn't think of that. Good call.

The post suggesting the nail polish said he uses it and when he wants he just scratches off the polish with his nail... tbh with you "scratch" isn't something I want to do with an expensive pda heh.

I've also sent an email to Acer asking if there is a way to turn the LEDs off but Acer support is pretty crappy tbh.

I wonder who decided that having continuously flashing LEDs was a good idea. If it was on constant it would be better imho. I'm guessing that the designer wanted to let the user know there was a battery drain going on but would have thought that allowing some user control would have been advisable. Once the warranty runs out on this PDA I think I'll open it up and see if I can do some sort of fix like desoldering a connection or maybe putting something between the cover and the led to hide the light. That would be better than painting the case or putting tape on it. Better still would be a software way of turning of the LEDs but it's looking more and more like it's hardwired in. :(

November 19th, 2007, 09:36 AM
Acer replied... with bad news...

Hello, Thank you for contacting Acer.

Regarding your enquiry,

unfortunately, there wouldn’t be a setting to disable or enable the flashing LED light as this is built into the firmware. The reason the LED light is constantly blinking when using wifi or Bluetooth is just to let you know you still have it switched on, saving battery life.

Acer Technical Support Team

... so it looks like either disconnecting the LED or covering it somehow.

Poot! Fnark! Frak!

Rob H
November 19th, 2007, 10:41 AM
In other words, "we couldn't be bothered to write an API call into the firmware" or possibly just haven't documented it.

The question is, can you reverse engineer the firmware to disable it?

November 19th, 2007, 12:26 PM
Personally the answer is nope... I had a quick look around the net to see if anyone was modding the n300 series firmware but couldn't find any.

During some screwups with the PDA itself I did accidently find the bootloader for the thing so it should be possible to re-flash the thing but I wouldn't mess with it without serious research like I did with my V3r phone. That phone has a well modded firmware thanks to 3rd party editing software... but I couldn't have done that without someone else writing the low-level code.

I'm basically I a High Level Language programmer...I'll leave the low-level stuff to the software engineers out there. :p

November 19th, 2007, 12:30 PM
Hmmm...found this about upgrading the firmware...


I just need to find somewhere that hacks the firmware now heh.

November 19th, 2007, 12:52 PM
Bah... Acer removed the ROM images for the handhelds from their ftp server so I couldn't even get it to have a look.

Oh well... back to the soldering iron or paint I think.