Nov 212011

Reinstalling Moboot

Access Restored after webOS Update

UPDATE – January 30, 2012 – I just had another episode with update 3.0.5, but this time it was much worse than with 3.0.4 and it took me far longer to recover. If you have a “regular” problem where you just can’t see Android CyanogenMod and boot to it, continue reading below. Otherwise if you’re stuck in an endless reboot cycle, or you just can’t boot to either OS, you can read my latest post about how I fixed my TouchPad after a problematic webOS update 3.0.5 knocked it out.

A recent webOS update on HP TouchPad broke the Android boot option and the tablet seems stuck with webOS only. The bad news is that at first it looks like the update entirely wiped Android because this OS is nowhere to be found and seemingly inaccessible, but the good news is that it didn’t really delete any Android OS files, apps or settings, and they were all still there. The problem was that the bootloader was gone. To be able to boot Android again, the boot manager Moboot had to be reinstalled on the TouchPad. This is how I fixed this problem:

(Disclaimer: This is a note to self and if you choose to do what I’ve done, proceed at your own risk.)

IMPORTANT: All of the Android installation files that need to be placed on the Touchpad (as described below) should be left in their zip format. DO NOT unzip them. The only file that must be extracted (unzipped) after download is ACMEInstall (for CM7.x) or ACMEInstall2 (for CM9), but that one goes onto your computer and not on the TouchPad.

1. Have the following files ready:

a. Moboot zip file from (I downloaded the latest version, but you may already have this from the first installation of CM7 on the TouchPad).

b. Novacom.exe – if the same computer was used for the initial installation of CyanogenMod Android on the TouchPad, this file should already exist (on my computer it’s in “C:Program FilesPalm, Inc” folder). Otherwise its installation can be downloaded from step #4 of the following link:
(see one of my comments below how to unzip and install it on your computer)

c. ACMEInstaller (ACMEInstaller2 if you are running CyanogenMod 9)- Just like with Novacom.exe listed above, a computer used to initially install CyanogenMod Android on HP Touchpad should already have this file. If not, it can be downloaded for CyanogenMod 9 from:

or for Cyanogenmod 7.x from

This is the only file (depending on your CyanogenMod version named either ACMEInstaller2 or ACMEInstaller, no extension) that must be extracted from the zip file. To keep everything simple it’s best to place it in the same folder with novacom.exe.

2. Connect the TouchPad to a PC with its USB cable and select the USB Drive option on the “Connected” menu on the TouchPad.

3. From the PC, create a new folder on the TouchPad external drive (usually shown as HP TOUCHPAD), and name it cminstall. Then, unlike during the initial CyanogenMod installation, copy only the Moboot zip file from #1 into the cminstall folder, then close the window and eject the attached TouchPad USB drive from your computer. In Windows you can do this in Start, Computer, right-click the HP TOUCHPAD drive and select Eject.

Press volume up during bootup4. Reboot the TouchPad (Device info, Restart options) while still connected to the PC with the USB cable and press and hold the volume up button while it’s booting up. Continue holding the volume rocker in up position until you see the big USB icon in the middle of the screen.

5. On your PC connected to the TouchPad run the command prompt (enter cmd from the Run line) and change directory (folder) to the one containing novacom.exe and ACMEInstaller

6. Enter the corresponding line in the command window and hit enter:
For CyanogenMod 9:
novacom boot mem:// < ACMEInstaller2 or for Cyanogenmod 7.x: novacom boot mem:// < ACMEInstaller 7. If you've installed Android on TouchPad before, the remainder is very similar to the past installation experience. The cursor will disappear for a minute or few while Moboot is being loaded, then the TouchPad will start "rolling eyes" (scrolling installation text messages at a high speed) with familiar Linux Penguins on top. Once everything is done, the old boot menu with Android, webOS, ClockworkMod and other options, should be there again. The Android OS with all the old settings and apps should still be there. Good luck! - - - - - - - - If you find these notes helpful, tip me with a dollar or few using the donate link on top. If you're using a CyanogenMod port consider donating to the CyanogenMod team from their website at

  29 Responses to “Fix for Broken CyanogenMod Android on HP Touchpad After webOS Update”

  1. Thank you so much for putting this out there!

  2. Works perfectly. Heard horror stories of problems after the webOS update, but this really made restoring the dual-boot a cinch.

  3. Question: so should we not update webOS? I will rarely boot in webOS… and I would prefer not to update it if its not beneficial. What are the benefits of updating the webOS anyway? Thank you in advance for your response.

    • You know the saying, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. If you’re not using webOS I currently see no reason to upgrade it because its patches are mostly minor bug fixes.
      My TouchPad upgraded on its own when I left it on the charging stand overnight in webOS, forgetting to reboot into Android. Perhaps I didn’t pay attention when it asked me to upgrade and I selected later, thinking that it would ask me again, but it didn’t. In the morning it already had the new version on it.
      So again, if you’re not using webOS and only use the TouchPad in Android I currently see no valid reason to upgrade webOS or even boot into it.

      • Thank you for your reply… and I agree! No point booting to webOS right now anyways. Cheers!

  4. so, like me I have installed already. What do I do?

    to reboot it from WebOS? The Cyanognmod its already there…
    Here its my email

    • Why on earth would you post your own email in here? Automated web crawlers are browsing web pages and collecting email addresses from all over the internet so they can sell them to spammers. You will get much more spam this way. I’m deleting it to protect you. Let me know if you really wanted to advertise your email to the public.

  5. Somebody please help me..!!

    • I have same issue.  How did you fix it?

      •  A little late, but incase anyone else gets this error… try restoring the HP touchpad back to factory and then trying again.  Worked for me!

    • Sorry Superman, I saw this comment in my email and it didn’t have the captured screen attached, hence I wasn’t sure what happened.  See my reply to Vgabbott for novacom, but from your screen capture I see that the directory (folder) from which you’re trying to run novacom program is C:DownloadsChromeaman, and you may have missed the step #5 – change the directory to where your novacom.exe and ACMEInstaller files are (best if they’re put together)  In my case the folder is C:Program FilesPalm, Inc so if it were there in your case as well, to change to that folder you’d  first have to type the following into your command prompt:
      cd Program FilesPalm, Inc
      then hit Enter
      Then you’d be able to type in the novacom boot mem… line and the command would be recognized. 
      I don’t know where your files are, but you get the picture, I hope.

      (The fact that I’m answering these questions here doesn’t mean I do technical support for free.  This is only a random act of courtesy to my visitors.)

  6. Thanks for this.

  7. Zarko:  Having same problem as Superman does.  Getting
    novacom not recognized as internal or external command.
    I am running Win7 32bit

    • If you can’t find it, install it again:

      1. You can download both the 64 and the 32 bit version from the link on page:

      2. To unpack the downloaded tgz file in Windows you will need something like WinRAR program
      (I downloaded mine from )

      3. Unpack (expand) the compressed tgz file

      4. Run the msi installation file.  When the installation is complete, your computer should have the novacom file and it will most likely be in “C:Program FilesPalm, Inc” folder.  In my case I didn’t see any messages after the file installed but the above folder appeared together with the file in it.

      That should be it – good luck.

      Don’t forget to put the ACMEInstaller file in the same folder with novacom – makes things much easier.  Also, ACMEInstaller has to be unpacked (unzipped) as I mentioned in the post (so the file you’re putting there is not but the ACMEInstaller file without extension that you unpacked from the zip file)

      Let me know whether it worked.

  8. WebOS 3.05 86 seems to play nice with Moboot on my Touchpad. Did the update, rebooted and still got the menu and the boot into Android. Only wish the Moboot menu actually let you choose which OS to boot into, instead of making you boot to Android, then reboot into WebOS.

    • Wow!  That’s great to hear, Daniel.  Perhaps it isn’t as aggressive as 3.0.4, particularly if it didn’t remove your boot loader, and perhaps I just wasn’t lucky – if you haven’t seen already, I had far more troubles with the 3.0.5 update as described in my more recent post Problems after HP TouchPad webOS Update.  
      I’m curious what version of CyanogenMod you were running  when you did your webOS 3.0.5 update –  was it 7.1 Alpha 3.5 or CM9 Alpha 0.x?  Thanks.

    • did you try using the volume buttons to select the OS from the boot menu?

  9. Hi Zarko,

    Thanks for the tutorial.

    I’ve done everything but it still boots in webos!

    Why is this happening?

    Ok, the msi program ran and installed, moboot is in cminstall on touchpad, Novacom and ACMEInstaller both in Palm, Inc folder, entered command line, TP does its thing but boots in WebOs – what the fish man!

    Please help dude!

    • If moboot is still in cminstall, ACMEInstall most likely didn’t run or finish. Some questions:
      1. Is this your first install or upgrade? I assume it’s the first install, but let me know.
      2. Did you unzip instead of placing the zip file with novacom program?
      3. Do you have the CyanogenMod android OS installation zip file in cminstall folder together with moboot? You should.
      4. Also, if it’s your first installation, did you put the ClockworkMod installation zip file in cminstall? You should.
      Moreover, if you’re installing CyanogenMod 9, you must download and use ACMEInstall2. ACMEInstall works with CM7.x.
      Hopefully this helps. Let me know whether you are making any progress.

      • Hi Zarko,

        Firstly, Thank You very much for your speedy reply.

        Basically my BIL bought TP’s in the US firesale, he loaded CM7 for me so til now I’m a noob.

        However, I did manage to figure it out… eventually!

        Turned out I hadn’t placed the zip folders but the files in cminstall.


        Sorry, didn’t mean to shout but hope it helps others that may sit in my boat in future! 8o)

        So, after many failed attempts thought WTH! Lets try CM9 and see if it works – thats when I thought to check the cminstall and palm, inc folders to ensure everything was in order.

        It took me 4 hours – ridiculous I know but at least I’m wiser in CM terms!

        Thanks Again!

        • Great news. Yes, ACMEInstall(2) is the only file that needs to be unzipped. All the files that need to be placed in cminstall folder must be in their original zip format (NOT extracted).

          • Humans are stupid are they (I), computers are quite clever lol!

            Now for some decent wallpapers and themes!

          • I wouldn’t go that far – computers can act extremely dumb in the human world and humans can act extremely slow in the world of computers, but together they have been a winning combination so far.

  10. I am trying to install the android in my touchpad and I got the following Message when I use the comand novacom: Can not find the device.
    My touchpad now still in the USB screen and I do not know how tão fix the problem.

    Can you help me?

    • Assuming your TouchPad is connected to the computer, try disconnecting it, restarting both computer and the TouchPad, then reconnecting the TouchPad to the computer and bringing it into the USB screen and running the novacom command again.

      Let me know if you’re still having problems.

  11. I am installing android OS for the first time in my hp touchpad. I copied ACME installer, MOBoot and Clockmod Recovery in “cminstall” file and tried running it in my touchpad. I did click “install zip from sdcard” and “install zip from sideload” which leads to “cminstall” folder but when I click the folder, it shows “CWM-based Recovery v6.0.1.9 No files found”. Now my touchpad doesn’t have installed Android, neither I can access WebOS. What shall I do? Please help

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