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[GUIDE] How to Make Your Own Boot Animations

This is a discussion on [GUIDE] How to Make Your Own Boot Animations within the Galaxy Nexus Themes forums, part of the Galaxy Nexus Development category; While written back in the spring of 2011, it is a constantly evolving guide that includes input/suggestions from many people over that time. Most of ...

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Thread: [GUIDE] How to Make Your Own Boot Animations

  1. #1
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    Post [GUIDE] How to Make Your Own Boot Animations

    While written back in the spring of 2011, it is a constantly evolving guide that includes input/suggestions from many people over that time. Most of the information I found around the web and have long since forgotten where. Some of it was my time spent using trial and error. However, a few people I would like to credit are: Seripco & Sardo Numspa from Xoom Forums & JaeKar99 from right here in our forums.

    While I've tried to explain things so that it eliminates confusion, if something still confuses you, please let me know and I'll try to edit to clear it up for others.

    Make Your Own Boot Animations

    Since Android 2.0, the android boot animation has been modified to make it easier to replace or customize. And the great thing is the Galaxy Nexus’ resolution allows for some very detailed images if you’d like.

    Getting Started
    You will need a few tools to get started. The second post will include the tools myself and the other contributors use to make ours.

    There are 2 ways to make your own boot animations. One is to create all the images yourself from scratch, but the easier second method is to convert existing images into a series to use for an animation. I often find videos on YouTube that I break down and convert into boot animations. This guide works for both methods.

    The display of the GNex is a 4.65-in., 720x1280, 124 pixels per cm (316 pixels per inch) 9:16 aspect ratio. So the image sizes you make should be 720 wide x 1280 high in portrait mode.

    Creating your files
    I tend to put my images into at least 2 separate folders so I can have a sort of intro that only plays once and a main part that loops until the OS is loaded. This isn’t mandatory though - you can actually put everything into 1 folder and just loop it. Name the folder(s) part0 & part1. I personally like to use the last few images of the first folder as a sort of transition between the 2 sections.

    There are sites that will tell you that the files must be pngs. But you can make the jpegs too and it won’t affect the outcome much. The advantage to using jpegs, in my opinion, is the file size. I’ve used png files and my zip file was 50MB, while my jpeg zip file was only 2-3MB. I do make & save mine as png first, then just convert them later so I can come back to them and tweak them later if needed (I prefer editing png files because I can use layers). But use whichever you prefer.

    To name your files, start with the file name “0001.jpg” or “0001.png”. Then each image should just increase by 1 until you complete your sequence. I try to keep mine below 75 images to once again keep the file size smaller. Just make sure the part1 folder file names start where part0 left off. In other words, if the last file name in part0 is 00030.png, the first one in part1 should be 00031.png. Some people will restart the numbers with each new folder, but I find that this adds work later if you need to move images around and can lead to confusion.

    The limit per folder seems to be 130 images in the bootanimation. If you go over that number, you will get stuck in a loop. (Thanks to Serpico of XoomForums for confirming this) You can however have a yet undetermined number of folders. (I made one with 13 folders with 12 of those containing 130 images. The file was HUGE but it still played ok)

    Once you get the image files divided into the folders as you’d like them, you need a small text file to tell the system how to play the images. Create a text file outside of the part0 & part1 folders called “desc.txt”. This folder will include the following:

    720 1280 24
    p 1 0 part0
    p 0 0 part1

    Let's break down the parts of the file:
    Width Height Frame-rate
    p Loop Pause Folder1
    p Loop Pause Folder2

    In other words:
    720 x 1280 resolution & 24 frames/sec
    p 1 (loop once) 0 (no pause) part0 (folder images are in)
    p 0 (loop until done loading) 0 (no pause) part1 (second folder)

    Changing the pause # from 0 doesn’t seem to make any change. Also, the "p" at the start of the second and third line seem to only be a placeholder. Nothing I've found explains what they are for (someone suggested they may just declare the files are "pictures") and changing them doesn't do anything except break things.


    Creating Your Zip File
    After you get the desc.txt file as you want it, go back into your 2 folders and ensure Windows didn’t create a “thumbs.db” file. If so, delete it or else you will get a white flash in the middle of your looped animation. If this is your first boot animation, I suggest just copying the desc.txt file from another bootanimation. I’ve uploaded one here: desc.zip

    **To disable the thumbnail caching, follow the steps at this link: Prevent Windows XP from Creating the Thumbs.db Thumbnail Cache Files***

    Now go back to the folder where you can see the part0, part1 & desc.txt files and using 7zip, add all 3 to an archive file. Make sure your settings for Archive & Compression look the same as this image (name can be anything you want for now):


    The most important part is to make sure the compression method is STORE (which means ZERO data compression), not Normal, Fast, Good, etc. If it’s set to anything else which includes data compression, it may give you boot loop problems. Congratulations, your boot animation file is now finished.

    Installing & Testing

    How to Install Using Root Explorer
    1. Download the boot animation file
    2. Rename to bootanimation.zip
    3. Using Root Explorer, copy bootanimation.zip to /data/local (make sure to rename existing file to bootanimation_bak.zip)

    How to Install Using ADB
    1. Download the boot animation file
    2. Rename to bootanimation.zip
    3. Copy to your "Tools" folder that contains adb commands
    4. Open Command Prompt and enter the command below

    Code:
    adb push bootanimation.zip /data/local
    Then to test:
    Code:
    adb shell bootanimation
    I’ve confirmed that you do NOT need to be rooted to change your boot animation, although you will only be able to do so using ADB. To install a non-developers version of ADB, follow the instructions here: Setting up ADB on Windows 7 64 bit (and other Windows platforms)

    To return to the stock boot animation, just remove or rename the .zip in /data/local and the system will default back to the stock one in /system/media provided you have not changed it in there.

    If you feel the need to save the current bootanimation.zip file in that folder, then before copying over it, use this command to pull it into your SDK /tools folder, rename it, then copy the new one into the tools folder and push it onto the GNex using the following command:

    Code:
    adb pull /system/media/bootanimation.zip bootanimation.zip
    ********************************
    If you place one of the boot animations on your GNex, then reboot and your device gets stuck in a boot loop, your file may be corrupted or something isn't quite right. Find a working boot animation in these forums and use the following commands to push them onto your phone via ADB. (It will save you having to re-flash your phone like I did the first time it happened to me.) Your device may appear to boot loop one more time after pushing the new file, but it will *reset* and finally boot normally.

    Code:
    adb devices adb push bootanimation.zip /data/local
    ************************************************** ****************
    If you are creating the boot animation to share with others online, I would highly recommend posting the MD5 hash (or checksum) of the file so that others will know that the file they downloaded is complete and won't cause them boot loop problems. To get it for your file you have a few options.
    1) download a program like "winmd5" or other freebie. It will output the md5 to post along with the download link, and the person downloading it can simply verify it using the same program.
    2) Using Astro File Manager, browse to the file and long press on it, then chose Details. At the bottom it will show you the md5 hash. Root Explorer will give you the md5 by long pressing the file, then choosing "Properties". (Most other file explorers probably do the same)
    3) There is also a decent app in the marketplace called AFV (Android File Verifier) for the device side of the verification. (I know it runs on Honeycomb, not sure of ICS or JB)

    Some other MD5 tips and ways to get md5 hash: verify your file's MD5 checksums! - Android Forums
    Last edited by fish1552; 07-10-2012 at 10:03 PM.

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  3. #2
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    (Thanks JaeKar99 for letting me use this from his guide with a few of my recommendations added.)

    The first tool you'll need is some type of graphics editing software. There are free options out there like GIMP (GIMP - The GNU Image Manipulation Program), so there is no need to buy something. You may need this to touch up images or simply to add your custom touch to them. MS paint, paint.net, Adobe Fireworks or Photoshop are some other options.

    Another tool you’ll need is 7zip or some other compression program that creates ZIP files, but 7zip is free: 7-Zip. Just make sure that whatever you use, it allows for a "STORE" option which allows for ZERO data compression. Compressing the file in any way will create boot loops. WinZip, WinRAR & PeaZip are other options.

    To get raw material from videos you will need to get a tool like YouTube Downloader. This will give you the option to pull down videos you may choose to use for your image sources. A tool I use is Firefox add-on called Flash Video Downloader.

    If you'd prefer to build your own animation - Blender is a great tool to make animation sequences. There are detailed videos on Youtube.com if you need to learn how to use this.

    To extract the images from a video, you will need Free Video to jpg Converter. This is the best free tool I've found to extract individual images from videos.

    Faststone Image Viewer. - This tool is used to batch change files. This is a nice program because it can rename, rotate, or completely convert whole batches of image files for you.

    Photoscape - is another that will build animated gifs for you and will make batch changes to images.

    You may also need a video editing program that is capable of putting captions on the video sequence or can edit longer sequences to shorter or cut and piece them together. Any should work fine. I use MSLive Movie Maker. I am sure that there are many more available.

    You can also get GifSplitter program to pull animated gif files apart into the respective images then those can be packed into a boot.

    You will also need a program to edit the desc.txt file. Some options are Notepad ++, MetaPad, or just plain old Notepad that comes with Windows. Do not use MSWord or other word processor. It will corrupt the file in a fashion that makes the boot not play.

    To make the previews I post along with the downloads, I use UnFREEz or Ulead GIF Animator. Just convert to the proper format, import the images and export out to your preferred format.
    Last edited by fish1552; 07-10-2012 at 07:54 PM.

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    Common problems:

    1) You forget to remove the thumbs.db file from the folder on your Windows PC: the bootanimation runs as a black screen.
    2) You don't change your zip program settings to not compress files: the bootanimation causes a boot loop
    Last edited by fish1552; 07-10-2012 at 09:32 PM.

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    *Bookmarked*

    Thanks fish!

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    Thanks. It was actually kind of refreshing to see JaeKar99's guide discussing using YouTube videos too since we've been making them like that over on XoomForums since early last summer in our Request your own boot animations thread.

    For those wanting to try the guide, the first one is the hardest. After that, it gets easier.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fish1552 View Post
    Thanks. It was actually kind of refreshing to see JaeKar99's guide discussing using YouTube videos too since we've been making them like that over on XoomForums since early last summer in our Request your own boot animations thread.

    For those wanting to try the guide, the first one is the hardest. After that, it gets easier.
    Agreed - Fought the first one for almost three days before I got it work.

    I am happy to help anyone learn how to build them. Ask away!
    If you are feeling generous - buy me a cup o~coffee.
    .

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    And thank you, JaeKar, as well.

    As soon as I am done tuning my stupid trim capacitor on my radio I am building for school, I will give this a shot.
    (tuning my radio is making me want to jump out of my basement window. Lol! )

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  9. #8
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    HI,I have been working on a boot animation and for some reason no matter where I put it it won't work. 1 thing is I had only 1 folder is that okay and it was named part0. I have checked and double check that folder with 204 imaged and the desc.txt file and they are correct until i zip them. The problem I ran into is every time I zip it (i did select store) it keeps creating a picasa.ini, desktop.ini, and thumbnail.db. AFTER I zip the file. I'll after getting frustrated with that I decided to put the zip on my SD card and extract and rezip there after deleting those 3 mischievous buggers. Please help. What should have been a fun activity has turned into an aggravating task. I must see it through anyway. What can I do?

    Sent from my Galaxy Nexus AXIOM ANTIMYTH
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  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by HotFlashes View Post
    HI,I have been working on a boot animation and for some reason no matter where I put it it won't work. 1 thing is I had only 1 folder is that okay and it was named part0. I have checked and double check that folder with 204 imaged and the desc.txt file and they are correct until i zip them. The problem I ran into is every time I zip it (i did select store) it keeps creating a picasa.ini, desktop.ini, and thumbnail.db. AFTER I zip the file. I'll after getting frustrated with that I decided to put the zip on my SD card and extract and rezip there after deleting those 3 mischievous buggers. Please help. What should have been a fun activity has turned into an aggravating task. I must see it through anyway. What can I do?
    At first glance, I would say it is because you have too many images in the folder. The limit I've found appears to be 130. Go over that and you more likely than not have a black screen.

    If you would like, post your zip file up somewhere on line and one of us can take a look at it and see what the problem might be.

    But do these:
    1) check to make sure you only have a max of 130 images in each folder
    2) check & make sure the thumbs.db file isn't in your zip file
    3) make sure the resolution is correct 720 1280 (frame rate here) in your desc file

  11. #10
    Milky Way
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    Thank you. I split them into 2 folders and updated the desc to match. I then found that the permissions were wrong and changed them to rw-r--r (I believe that's what I changed it to]. I read that somewhere. It worked! Thank you again. I'll still post it anyway in case anyone else might want to look at it or test it out.

    Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Xparent Purple Tapatalk 2
    The only dumb questions are the ones not asked.
    Ignorance is not bliss...it is merely a belated reality.


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