LICKS - Linux Installer for CHDK and SDM

LICKS is a Java application designed to install SDM or CHDK on a Linux machine. It will format a card, make it bootable and copy DISKBOOT.BIN (and supporting files) if you ask it to. It's based on SDMInst, my OSX installer for SDM and CHDK.

LICKS now offers the option of making a FAT32 card bootable. This option is only suitable for DryOS R47 cameras introduced since January 2011 such as the A3300, SX150, SX220, SX230, IXUS220 and IXUS310. For an up-to-date list of such cameras see the bottom of the list on this page

For older cameras, cards less than 4GB in size can only be formatted as a single partition, while cards 4GB or larger can only be formatted with two partitions (a small FAT16 one and the remainder as FAT32). 4Gb cards can be formatted either way. However, by altering the max1size or min2size entries in the file (see below) you can change this behaviour.

Note that Licks should be able to turn a card that has two partitions back into one or vice versa. It requires version 1.4 or later of the Java Runtime.

The image below shows the LICKS main window. Click on any field to get help about it.

To download LICKS, click here. Unzip to produce a folder containing the licks.jar file and a shell script to run it.

Notes for Testers

In order to do its job, Licks needs to have admin permission to issue commands such as fdisk. Currently that means you need to run it from a terminal window, setting the current directory to the folder containing the jar file and typing:

   sudo java -jar licks.jar
When you run it it will ask you to type in your admin (logon) password.

Licks checks the attached mounted devices (hard drives, usb drives and card readers). It should skip drives that are:

So far it's successfully dealt with all the devices I have, but I'd like to test a wider variety.

It should correctly report if a card is read-only and if it has two partitions. Again I'm interested in more extensive testing (I have no cards bigger than 4GB for example).

It's possible that LICKS will not work if Linux is not using English as its display/UI language. I had assumed that 'system commands' such as 'fdisk' (which LICKS issues under the covers) produced the same output regardless of UI langauge. However I discovered (by switching my system to French) that this is not true. I have modified LICKS so it does deal with French, but there may be problems with other languages. I'd be very interested to see the debug logs in such cases.

Limited Testing

Version History:

Extra Features:

LICKS has some extra features that can be enabled by changing its properties file, "", (which you will find in the same folder as the app once you've run it). These features are:

The commands LICKS issues 'under the covers' are based in part on those given by Aaron Anderson here, to whom many thanks.

Comments, suggestions and bug reports welcome.

All my apps are freeware, but if you've found them useful and would like to thank the author, you can make a donation (for example £1, €1 or $1) to show your appreciation for the many hours spent working on them!

For other SDM and CHDK-related stuff of mine, see here and here.