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Amazon's Kindle Paperwhite Already Jailbroken

By - Source: Hack A Day | B 9 comments

The hack to jailbreak the Kindle Paperwhite is similar to the one used on the Kindle Touch.

Last week Amazon began shipping the Kindle Paperwhite, the company's latest e-reader with a patented built-in front light and hand-tuned fonts. Other features include 25-percent better contrast, 62-percent more pixels, built-in Wi-Fi, an 8-week battery life, and new services like X-Ray, Time to Read and more.

Hack a Day now reports that the device has already been jailbroken. This hack is based on a jailbreak of the Kindle Touch which was performed by removing the case, connecting to the serial port and downloading the firmware. The bootloader wasn't locked, and the JavaScript (used for the UI) wasn't obfuscated.

"Gaining access to the device is as easy as injecting some HTML code into the UI," Hack A Day said regarding the Kindle Touch hack. "It is then run by the device as root (no kidding!). [Yifan] grabbed an MP3 file, changed its tag information to the HTML attack code, then played the file on the device to exploit the flaw. How long before malicious data from illegally downloaded MP3 files ends up blanking the root file system on one of these?"

The new hack for Amazon's Kindle Paperwhite requires the user to upload the data.stgz file to the root directory of the device, and then restart. The next time the device boots, it will be jailbroken, allowing hackers to use a Linux device (like the Raspberry Pi) connected to the Paperwhite's e-ink screen.

"USB downloader mode isn’t yet enabled," Hack A Day warns. "If you brick your device, you’ll need to connect your Kindle to a serial port."

Naturally hacking into Amazon's new e-reader will void the warranty, and could possibly render the device useless. Consumers attempting to jailbreak the device are doing so at their own risk.

 

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  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , October 8, 2012 6:36 PM
    sounds worthless to me.
  • 5 Hide
    hate machine , October 8, 2012 7:12 PM
    Jailbroken... FFS I wish that term would die.
  • 0 Hide
    thecolorblue , October 8, 2012 7:17 PM
    why?
  • 4 Hide
    kawininjazx , October 8, 2012 7:56 PM
    That's like jailbreaking a toaster, now what?
  • -2 Hide
    back_by_demand , October 8, 2012 10:17 PM
    kawininjazxThat's like jailbreaking a toaster, now what?

    Yeah, but then you aren't forced to buy bread from the same company, you can buy your bread anywhere you want and have it as brown as you want, be warned however as jailbreaking your toaster could result in burnt toast and once it is burnt you can't unburn it, even if you attach the bread to a serial port
  • 0 Hide
    xendrome , October 8, 2012 11:16 PM
    Jailbroken... isn't that an iOS term anyway?
  • 1 Hide
    thecolorblue , October 8, 2012 11:31 PM
    I have a older kindle and am in no way limited to books purchased from amazon.
    Does this "jailbreak" enable something special?

    really am curious on this one
  • 0 Hide
    alextheblue , October 9, 2012 2:54 AM
    back_by_demandYeah, but then you aren't forced to buy bread from the same company, you can buy your bread anywhere you want and have it as brown as you want, be warned however as jailbreaking your toaster could result in burnt toast and once it is burnt you can't unburn it, even if you attach the bread to a serial port
    I can put books from other sources on my stock Kindle Keyboard. Some require conversion. I can do it via USB or just email it to the Kindle and let Whispersync handle it.

    Anyway, it's rare that I actually need to do that. Why would I have bought a Kindle if I didn't plan on using Amazon as my primary source for e-books?
  • 0 Hide
    DSpider , October 9, 2012 9:47 AM
    thecolorblueI have a older kindle and am in no way limited to books purchased from amazon.

    You are limited to their format, dammit. Why won't Amazon implement ePub already? It's basically the same thing as what they use now. I would buy it if it had ePub support and came with Android - so that I can choose the reading software, and not be stuck with whatever they provide and their bugs.