Pin Me

How to Hack Nextar GPS Units

written by: Misty Faucheux•edited by: Jonathan Wylie•updated: 9/23/2010

Want to do more with your GPS unit as opposed to just getting from here to there? Not sure how? Well, here are some tips on how to hack Nextar GPS units and make them bend to your will!

  • slide 1 of 3

    Why Hack Your Unit?

    The Nextar GPS is a brand of GPS (global positioning system) units which are manufactured by Celestron, a company known for their telescopes and binoculars. Like most GPS units, these ones only come with the bare essentials. So, if you want to add more functionality, you will have to hack your Nextar GPS unit.

    Are you wondering why you would want to hack your Nextar GPS unit? First of all, it allows you to add extra things like games, utilities and programs. Other users often want to convert these units into mini-computers with some of the same functionality as a smartphone. You can also add music to your unit, but it may not be helpful to do this unless there is a jack where you can plug in a headphone. You may be able to fit one into the charger plug, but for this you will have to do some experimentation.

  • slide 2 of 3

    How to Do the Hacking

    Now, that you know why you would want to mess around with your unit, it’s time to learn how. The first thing that you want to do is plug your Nextar GPS unit into a computer that operates any version of the Windows operating system. You also need to make sure that your unit has ActiveSync installed on your PC. This will help you transfer files from your computer to your GPS unit. If you do not have ActiveSync installed on your machine, you can download this software from the Microsoft website for free. Just be sure that you do this first before you start trying to transfer programs to your unit.

    When you plug in your device, it should come up to the music/gps/settings menu on your computer. This means that your computer recognizes the device, and it also means that your ActiveSync is working. Next, you will have to change the path of the MP3 program within \ResidentFlash\DShell\mshell.ini.

    Originally, the MP3 dialog box would display the following path: \ResidentFlash\DShell\X3_Chirper\X3Player.e, but you need to change this to \Windows\explorer.exe. Once you have done this, you will have to reset your machine. You cannot just turn it off; you will have to do a hard reset. Hold down the on/off button until it shuts off, and then hold it down again until it comes back on.

    When the machine comes back on, try to start the MP3 player. You should now have a Windows task bar on your machine. Next, you next need to load some type of mobile task manager. There are several free ones on the Internet. Just find one that you like, download it to your computer, and sync it with your GPS device. You should install this file in the ResidentFlash folder. This will ensure that it comes back up when you restart your unit.

    Finally, terminate the DShell.exe process in your Nextar Menu System. Everything should now work properly and you now know how to hack Nextar GPS units.

  • slide 3 of 3

    Free Task Manager

    A good free task manager is the Task Manager for Windows Mobile. It comes with games, social networking applications, backup applications and file transfer capability.

    To use this task manager, simply download it from the site, and install it on your computer. Then, you just need to sync up your computer with your GPS unit to add it. Now, you have a fully functional GPS unit.