Asus Fonepad 7 (or any Android device) – Change mouse cursor

Asus Fonepad 7 – Change mouse cursor

A black Android lockscreen with custom mouse pointer icon

As anyone who has used a mouse on an Android phone knows the standard cursor sucks, on the Asus Fonepad 7 it is black outlined with dark blue, this is very hard to see on a dark background and even more so when you are outside with the sun glaring on your screen.  I decided I’d had enough of this the other day when it stopped me being able to take photos using qDSLRDashboard, I just couldn’t see the cursor so couldn’t click the shutter button to take a photograph.

I’d tried an app called bigmouse but this didn’t work on my phone and is no longer updated, I considered looking at the source code the app author provided on his website but learning to develop in Android isn’t something I am really looking to do at the moment.  The only other solution was to root your phone or tablet then alter a resource file, I wasn’t overly keen on rooting my Fonepad, I had done it before on my Moto G and JXD tablet but the JXD was cheap and the Moto had a large user base with plenty of solutions for bricked phones.  The Asus Fonepad 7 also uses an Intel processor which means there aren’t that many rooting guides as most Android devices still use ARM processors, but as this was the only solution I bit the bullet and gave it a go, the rooting was actually quite easy, changing the mouse cursor wasn’t quite so easy, I ended up in a bootloop for a tense hour, eventually, using several guides, I managed to get a white cursor on my tablet.

As I had several problems during this process myself, and no one guide had every step needed I decided I would write a guide, in part for myself should I ever need to do this again, but also for anyone else interested in giving it a try.

The Guide

First Steps

Install ADB drivers, for the Fonepad 7 K00Y, there is a link to the Intel ones in this thread http://forum.xda-developers.com/showpost.php?p=51454108&postcount=1

Root your device, for the Fonepad 7 K00Y, see this thread http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2771512

Download or create a mouse pointer, there are some here http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1701701

Then

1. Run Command prompt (type cmd.exe in start menu)

2. Change to your adb directory in command prompt (for me this is “cd j:\android“)

3. Copy framework-res.apk to your computer using the following command –

adb pull /system/framework/framework-res.apk j:\android\framework-res.apk

4. Copy again to a different folder so you have a backup! –

adb pull /system/framework/framework-res.apk j:\android\o\framework-res.apk

5. Open the framework-res.apk file using 7-zip (do not extract the files as this messes up the apk)

6. Drag the pointer_arrow.png you downloaded into res\drawable-hdpi within 7-zip and overwrite

7. Close 7-zip and open your Fonepad (or other tablet/phone) in windows explorer

8. Copy the framework-res.apk you just edited in 7-zip to /sdcard/download/ either by dragging and dropping or using a command similar to this –

adb push j:\android\framework-res.apk /sdcard/download

9. Run adb shell using –

adb shell

10. Set yourself as superuser using this command –

su

(you may need to click grant superuser privileges on your phone if a message pops up)

11. Change the file permissions of framework-res.apk (very important to avoid boot loop) using this command –

chmod 644 /sdcard/download/framework-res.apk

12. Change directory permissions to allow writing to system folder using this command –

mount -o rw,remount /system

13. Copy framework-res.apk to the correct folder using this command –

cat /sdcard/download/framework-res.apk > /system/framework/framework-res.apk

14. Reboot your phone using –

reboot

15. After the phone has successfully booted go into shell again –

adb shell

16. Become superuser –

su

17. Protect system folder again using –

mount -o ro,remount /system

18. That’s it you’re done, your mouse pointer should now be new and more visible.

 

I’m sure that by using an Xposed module this process could be made much easier and safer but writing an Android apk isn’t something I know how to do yet, maybe in the future I’ll learn, in the meantime I’m happy for anyone else to use this guide and my icons to create one….

My icons are large and visible but not pretty, you can use them for whatever you like –

Download hdpi Android mouse pointer

Download xhdpi Android mouse pointer

Update – If your device has a retina or high resolution screen you will need to change the icon in drawable-xhdpi instead of drawable-hdpi, this is a different size to normal icons so you need 44×56 pixel png.

Rooting Update – “Success with my Fonepad 7 on Lollipop, I installed latest intel drivers for Windows 10 and used T4, seems to be rooted now, used cwm”

Disclaimer – Rooting voids your device warranty.  This process could lead to a bootloop or possibly brick your device, do not proceed if you are not confident in your skills, I will not be held responsible for any damage caused, I am not an Android expert, if you mess things up I can’t help you fix it.

 

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6 thoughts on “Asus Fonepad 7 (or any Android device) – Change mouse cursor

  • I also didn’t have it on an SD card, I just had it in the root directory because I don’t have a samsung card. Then I tried to use a root explorer to modify the permissions from there, but I readf somewhere to move it to system/apps first then to try to change the permissions but I just moved it right to system/framework to change the permissions from there and just immediatly rebooted and bootloops after I did that before I could change permissions. =P I’ve got it running again and will try to move it to system/apps to change permissions then move it over to system/framework. That or I’m looking into creating my own full custom roms.

  • I’ve gotten a proper root and super user acess granted now. Do you have a suggestion for how I could change the permissions for this APK from the Download folder in my phone’s internal storage?

  • That did it!!! =D I used a root explorer to change the permissions of the file from system/app then I moved it to system/framework (this time it didn’t restart and I actually check it again and the permissions had turned off so I turned them to RW, R, R) rebooted, and BOOM! NO MOUSE CURSOR!! THANKS SO MUCH! I’m making a virtual reality game that will be using a gyroscopic mouse and a worldspace crosshair in Unity but the overlayed cursor was soo annoying. THIS FIXED IT!!!!!!!! THANKS SO MUCH!!!

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