Rooting Lenovo K3 Note in Linux

At the begining of the Nairobi International Trade Fair (NTIF) which happend from 28th September to 4th October 2015, I lost the Samsung I9000 i was using. It was an old phone, I was happy to replace it with a cheap Nokia phone (Mulika mwizi worth Kshs 2000) but I had to get a smartphone to sync my contacts from Google. I was looking for a nice budget device with good specs to last me at least a year or two before upgrading. I have been eying Lenovo devices (laptops and phones) for a while so I decided to check out their local distributors. There is one such a distributor with a wide variety of Lenovo phones, Avechi kenya. They had two models I liked, the S8 Golden Warrior and the K3 Note. The S8 was going for Ksh 19,500 and the K3 Note 21,500. Both are nice devices but the Note has twice as big RAM and ROM. You can compare the features on gmsarena.

lenovo k3 note

lenovo k3 note

Continue reading “Rooting Lenovo K3 Note in Linux”

KiCad’s CvPcb: Associating components with their footprints

After finishing on the schematic and creating a netlist file, we then have to run the CvPcb to associate components and footprints which are .pretty files. These files have to be retrieved from KiCad’s github repository ‘’ which takes a lot of time especially when you have a slow Internet connection. In addition, if you don’t have a connection, then accessing the footprints becomes impossible. It’s therefore better to have these files locally. To do so:

  1. Create a directory for the files and navigate to the directory

    cd ~/ 
    mkdir KiCad
    cd KiCad
    mkdir library_repos
    cd library_repos
  2. Get library installer script from KiCad source mirror.
  3. Run:
    ./ --install-prerequisites   //This is to install command tools needed here


    ./ --install-or-update   //downloads library sources from github to your library-repos folder.

    This takes a while.

    After doing this, the library files are all now at ~/KiCad/library_repos/ .Then there is the error “unable to parse URL….” whenever CvPcb is launched, and so the components cannot be associated with their footprints.

  4. To solve this error:
    • Close the error window (press esc key)
    • Go to preferences, Footprint Libraries
    • Click on Remove Library until all the rows under Nickname and Library Path are deleted then click OK.
    • Under Preferences, click on Configure Paths. A table containing paths and their names should appear.
      Select KIGITHUB and delete it from the table then click on ‘Add’.
      Under Name, type in a name of your choice that is in upper case and starts with ‘KI’.
      Under Path, type in the path to the directory that you had created for the libraries in Step 1 and click ‘OK’
    • On the terminal, navigate to /usr/share/kicad/template/fp-lib-table
    • Copy the content in the fp-lib-table and paste it in /home/username/.config/kicad/fp-lib-table
    • Since we are using a local repository for our libraries and not github, in ‘/home/username/.config/kicad/fp-lib-table’ replace ‘type Github’ with ‘type KiCad’ and ‘uri ${KIGITHUB}’ with ‘uri ${KINAME}’ where ‘NAME’ in ‘KINAME’ is the name you assigned your path in the Configure Paths table, Step 4.4.
      These changes should me made throughout the entire file, /home/username/.config/kicad/fp-lib-table.
    • Save and exit
  5. You’re done!
    Now when you run CvPcb the error is gone and the footprints appear in the table and can be associated with the components in the schematic.