Monday, 6 July 2009

Hairy stunt #1: firmware update via wine

My shiny new LG GGW-H20L blu-ray/alphabet soup reader/writer happened to need a firmware update. For some reason, many hardware vendors think win32 executables are handy for this sort of thing. I really... don't.

But I got intrigued when several people reported success updating the firmware through wine. Copious amounts of wine can of course make almost anything seem like a good idea, so I bravely give it a try - it will probably brick something in an amusing way, at least.

winetricks mfc42 grabs the usual missing dlls for us. Yet, the firmware updater fails with something on the order of ERROR_SUCCESS in informativeness.

Oh well. Last try: running wine as root.
... and it works. Quickly and perfectly. I don't _think_ I'm hallucinating. More voluptuous hallucinations would be expected in that case.

I suspect the kernel's blk_verify_command kicked in when running as a normal user. Fair enough, you don't necessarily want the backup job user to be able to overwrite the tape drive firmware with zeroes. Or a more-evil-than-usual ransomware virus.

Still, I boggle. And salute fellow Wine contributors. Well done.