Ainol NOVO 10 Captain, NOVO 10 Hero II, and NOVO 7 Venus Firmware Upgrade – Step by Step Guide

Ainol NOVO 10 Captain tablet

Ainol NOVO 10 Captain, NOVO 10 Hero II , and NOVO 7 Venus are all using the same quad-core APU from Actions Semiconductor. They follow the same firmware upgrade procedure. Thanks Darklore on Tablet Republic for translating the original Ainol guide in Chinese into this detailed instruction .

Tip: Take note of how to get to the language settings on your device before flashing the firmware as your device will be in Chinese after the upgrade and you will need to change the language to the language you want.

Important: Make sure your tablet is charged to at least 50% charge, this is a precautionary measure because if the battery runs out during the upgrade or the upgrade is interrupted in some way it’s not going to be pretty.

Important: This process will wipe all user data and apps installed on the device, it is recommended to backup all your important apps and info before proceeding with the update.

Important: You need to download the correct version for your device, either version 1 or version 2. To find out what version your device is follow these steps:

  1. Open the settings on your tablet
  2. Scroll down to about device and look at the build number
  3. After the build number it will tell you what version you have (v1 or v2)

Now that you have your device version you can begin downloading the required files for your particular device version. From our experience, you can use v2 firmware for both v1 and v2 tablets .

Ainol NOVO 10 Captain Androd 4.2.2 -2013-11-22 firmware Pure English edition

Download link:

Ainol just released another firmware upgrade . It’s pure English version . This version also should be able to fix most of the battery sign zero issue.

In case you still have the battery sign zero issue. Here is the work around: plug-in charger, long press the power button for 10~15 seconds, wait until you the the battery charging sign appears and disappears. Then long press the power button, it should boot up. If you don’t shut down the tablet (just turn off the screen to put it into sleep mode), you shouldn’t need this, only if you shut down that tablet.

For NOVO 10 Captain v2 devices: update on 9/24/2013

Ainol Captain Android 4.2.2 – 2013-9-24 

For NOVO 10 Captain v2 devices: update on 8/20/2013

Ainol Novo10 Captain 2013.08.20 V2.rar – 437.75 MB

For NOVO 10 Captain v1 devices: update on 8/12/2013 (Captain sold by uPlay Tablet is this version) 
Ainol_Captain_20130812.rar – 428.31 MB

For Hero II v1 devices:
Hero II Quad Core – Android 4.2.2 (v1) – Upgrade firmware

For Hero II v2 devices:
Hero II Quad Core – Android 4.2.2 (v2) – Upgrade firmware

Upgrade Utility – All Devices:
Pad Product Tool – Upgrade Utility

Alternatively you can download the firmware from the original firmware download post in this forum
Original Firmware Download Post

2. Unzip the “Pad Product Tool_v1.02.rar” and the “Hero2_quad_v(x)_4.2.2.rar” files.
3. Rename any and all folders that contain Chinese characters. There should not be any Chinese characters in any of the file paths.
4. Install the “Pad Product Tool_v1.02 Utility” by running the setup.exe file found in the Pad Product Tool_v1.02 folder you just extracted.

5. Follow the setup procedure to install the Upgrade Utility (Circled in red)

In the security driver popup select install driver software anyway

Once the installation completes click close

6. Plug the USB cable into your pc (It is recommended to use the original USB cable)
7. While pressing and holding the Vol(+) button plug the USB cable into the tablet, Windows will begin searching for drivers to install. This search will however fail and we will then install the drivers manually.
8. Click on the Windows Start Button/Orb and do a search for device manager and open it up.

9. In the Device Manager look for a yellow warning icon for unknown/other devices, see the image below:

10. Right Click on the unknown device and select “Update Driver Software”

11. Click browse my computer for driver software

12. Navigate to the installation folder where you installed the Upgrade Utility, then select the “Driver” folder and click ok. The default installation locations are:
• C:\Program Files\Tablet Product Tool(Developer Edition) 1.02 – For 32bit Windows
• C:\Program Files (x86)\Tablet Product Tool(Developer Edition) 1.02 – For 64bit Windows

13. In the Windows Security popup select “install this driver software anyway”

14. Once Windows has successfully installed the drivers confirm that there are no more yellow warnings for unknown devices in the Device Manager. If there are no warnings for unknown devices you’re in business, if there are then try using a different USB port and try again, failing that try the installation on a different PC.

15. Now with the tablet connected and in USB Mode (Vol+ Plug in USB) open the “MainApp.exe” file located in the Product folder in your installation location
The default location again is:
• C:\Program Files\Tablet Product Tool(Developer Edition) 1.02\Product – Windows 32bit
• C:\Program Files (x86)\Tablet Product Tool(Developer Edition) 1.02\Product – Windows 64bit
16. You will be greeted by a popup screen, navigate to where you extracted the “Hero II Quad Core - Android 4 .2.2 “ folder and select the “jellybean_atm7029_10_a_4_2_130521.fw” file and then click open

Select the jellybean_atm7029_10_a_4_2_130521.fw file in the extracted folder and click open

17. In the next screen click replace.

Skip 18, 19, 20, and 21. It only applies when the firmware path has Chinese characters.

18. Now disconnect the tablet and exit the Upgrade Utility, we need to fix the path to the firmware.fw file in the Upgrade Utility because it may contain Chinese characters which will cause the upgrade to fail.

• Navigate to the Upgrade Utility “Product” folder – default location: C:\Program Files (x86)\Tablet Product Tool(Developer Edition) 1.02\Product and open the “Product.ini” file with notepad.
• Edit the “FWFILE=” to point to the jellybean_atm7029_10_a_4_2_130521.fw file you extracted.
FWFILE=C:\Users\User\Desktop\ Novo 10 Hero II Firmware and Upgrade Utility\Hero II Quad Core - Android 4 .2.2 (v2)\jellybean_atm7029_10_a_4_2_130521.fw

• Click: file->save and close notepad

19. Re-connect the tablet in USB mode (Vol+ Connect USB)
20. Re-open the “MainApp.exe” file located in the Product folder in your installation location and repeat steps 16 and 17
21. Once the Upgrade Utility has loaded the firmware confirm the firmware has been loaded successfully

22. The next steps are very important, screw this up or miss one of the steps and you will more than likely brick your device, proceed with caution:
a) In the “RECOVERY Partition” section click on Image and navigate to where you extracted the firmware and select the “rec.img” file and click open
b) In the “MISC Partition” section click on Image and select the “misc.img” file and click open
c) In the “SYSTEM Partition” section click Image and select the “system.img” file and click open

This step is not necessary but if you fancy the Chinese apps that are installed by default when you get a new device in the “VENDOR_APP Partition” you can add the “China-20130530.img” but more than likely you don’t want them installed so just leave this empty

23. Double check that you have selected the correct .img files for the correct sections by clicking in the path field to see the full path.
Important: The following must NOT be left empty or you will brick your device:
BOOT Partition, RECOVERY Partition, MISC Partition, SYSTEM Partition
24. Triple check, it’s your last chance
• Firmware loaded correctly
• Boot Partition is checked and has the default value of ./boot.bin
• Recovery Partition is checked and pointing to the rec.img file
• Misc Partition is checked and pointing to the misc.img file
• System Partition is checked and pointing to the system.img file
25. Once you are happy that you have set all these points up correctly and double checked you may proceed by saying a little prayer and clicking on the “DOWN” button.

The Upgrade Utility will start flashing your new firmware.
Be patient while this process completes and DO NOT unplug the tablet or power off your PC unless you want to use your tablet as a paperweight or a doorstop. This is the most crucial part of the process and if it is interrupted half way through for some reason you will be searching for an unbricking tutorial.
26. After a minute or three it will complete the flashing process and you should see “successful 1” in the following the info box:

Once the flashing completes unplug the USB cable from the tablet and long press the power button for about 10 seconds to boot up the device. Be patient the device may take up to 5 minutes to boot up. If your tablet does not want to boot after the upgrade, plug the charger in, wait a few minutes and then you should be able to boot successfully.

That’s it, you’re done and have successfully upgraded to 4.2.2 JellyBean.

Please Note:
1. Whenever an upgrade flash completes the battery may show the incorrect charge , put the tablet on charge for 20 – 30 minutes to calibrate the battery which will then display the correct charge level.

2. You may still have the battery showing zero problem on Captain right after you flash the Captain firmware. If so, plug in the charger for 20 mins, long press the Power button for 5 seconds to turn it on. You may have to try it a few times before it works. If you see the battery charging sign, wait until it’s gone, then try again. Once you turn it on, charge it for 4~5 hours, let it de-charge completely (you can set the display on forever to help de-charge). Once you full de-charge it, plug it charger to re-charge it. You may have to do such cycle a couple times, then the battery indicator will be normal, and you won’t see this battery sign zero after you turn off Captain.



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