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After reading forums, a bit confused about ROMS/Themes/Kernels

Discussion in 'Android Roms' started by AllYourBass, Oct 20, 2010.

  1. AllYourBass
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    AllYourBass New Member

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    Hello all,

    I've read plenty of forum posts but I'm finding myself a bit overwhelmed, so I'll list out some specific questions. Sorry if these have been answered elsewhere!

    1. ROMS: From what I understand, this changes many general functions and functionality of your phone. Is there a way to download multiple and switch between them, or is it a one-at-a-time thing? Does it matter whether you install a ROM before a theme or vice versa?

    2. Themes: I believe these are app icons/docks/possibly wallpapers. Can you install any theme you want over any ROM you have? Is there a way to have multiple themes available and easily "switch" between them?

    3. Kernels: From what I understand, kernels change how your CPU operates...getting to be pretty serious business here. There are so many kernels released...what types of differences do various kernels offer?

    Though I have no problem following instructions to root my Droid (I recently did), I don't know what each step is accomplishing. When I used the DarkEdge (theme/ROM?), I ended up having ROM Manager, BusyBox, DarkEdge Tools, MetaMorph and maybe some other stuff; eventually, I became glued to the instructions without a real understanding of WHAT was happening and how these processes work with other ROMs/themes/whatever.
  2. meepstone
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    meepstone New Member

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    Roms: Yes you can download multiple roms and change them whenever you would like.

    Themes: Are installed after the Rom is installed and you should check to make sure you've downloaded a theme that is compatible with the rom you are using. They do change the overall look of the phone. Whereas a rom may not change how it looks.

    Kernels: Affect cpu speed and voltage to maximize performance and/or battery life.
  3. furbearingmammal
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    furbearingmammal Super Moderator

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    To clarify one point -- themes are ROM-specific. Installing the wrong version of a theme or a theme that wasn't designed for a ROM can have very bad results, ranging from bootloops forcing a nandroid/clockwork backup restore to out-of-date versions of apps being installed to major visual artifact/glitch problems.
  4. huskerkate
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    huskerkate Premium Member Premium Member

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    welcome to the forum!! i'm willing to bet you'll find as much info as you could ever want about your Droid. stick around and enjoy the fun!

    as to your specific questions: a rom is essentially a custom OS for your phone, to work in place of the OS preinstalled when you got your phone. you can dl as many roms as you want, and switch between them. however, it is recommended that you do a wipe of data and cache (ie, a reset of your phone) when switching between roms. here is a link to a thread for post-rooters: http://www.droidforums.net/forum/ha...ve-rooted-now-what-n00bs-guide-post-root.html

    and yes, you must install a rom before you install a theme. this is because a theme is not a rom/OS. a theme simply changes the look of your OS/phone by adding colors and other goodies. you can apply a theme directly over a rom. however, for the most part, a theme has to be specifically ported for a particular rom. in other words, a theme designed for one rom will not generally work on a different rom. as you will see, most themes are ported to multiple roms, so you usually have quite a selection to choose from.

    a kernel interacts with your CPU, and allows you to "overclock", or get faster processing speed out of your phone. every phone reacts differently to different kernels (as well as roms, for that matter), so you may experience different performance depending on what rom/kernel combo you choose. i always recommend that you try different roms and kernels until you find the combo that your phone likes the best, and suits your personal tastes and preferences.

    hope this helps. take some time exploring and flashing. and once you're addicted (which you almost certainly will be), join in the discussions! also, if you have questions, don't hesitate to post.

    have fun!! :)
  5. BayouFlyFisher
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    BayouFlyFisher Rescue Squad

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    "Is there a way to download multiple and switch between them, or is it a one-at-a-time thing?"

    AYB, I install various roms and themes to see if I like them. If I do, then I make a nandroid backup of that combination and keep it on my phone. You can do that as often as you like and then switch between them. I currently have two different themes. One has the Gold and Maroon theme (Golden Elegance) and the other has the Black & White theme (Bold N Black). I keep both updated and switch as often as I like based on my OCD at the moment or my Manic Depressive mood swings!! I never run either of these for more than a day at time and then I switch.

    In the past few weeks I've had the following roms on my phone: Sapphire1.1.1 (one of my daily drivers), UD1.0 (one of my daily drivers), Miui, Chevy's 4.8, CM6 and a few others. I love installing roms and theme and do so very frequently. The key is to make backups before you change anything. That way you can always go back to where you started.

    Good luck and have fun!!!
  6. AllYourBass
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    AllYourBass New Member

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    Thanks a ton for all the information, everyone. This was immensely helpful and certainly increased my comfort level with all of this.

    I had a DarkEdge theme running, but now that I'm back to square one (having Nandroid'd back to an old restore after ruining my phone :)), I'm thinking of rooting and grabbing the latest Bugless Beast ROM and pairing it up with Manup456's REVOlution theme. I'm excited to get off work and try it!

    Thanks again.
  7. furbearingmammal
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    furbearingmammal Super Moderator

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    Bugless Beast can be a beast to install. I'd recommend you go for something a bit more install-friendly like CyanogenMod, LFY, Sapphire, or Simply Stunning. But that's me. :)
  8. huskerkate
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    huskerkate Premium Member Premium Member

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    here are a couple of links to help you with the rooting process:

    http://www.droidforums.net/forum/dr...-os-version.html?highlight=root regardless os

    http://www.droidforums.net/forum/re...08-multiple-phones-root-them-unroot-them.html

    like FBM said, BB is a little tricky on the install. Pete has made some tweaks to his rom to increase the functionality, but the byproduct is special install procedures. don't get me wrong, it's a very good, popular, and stable rom. but, if you decide to go this route, make sure that you completely read and understand his install instructions. they should be posted in the OP of the BB v0.5 thread, or you can find them on his website.

    good luck!
  9. BayouFlyFisher
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    BayouFlyFisher Rescue Squad

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    I agree with FBM. Beast can be tricky. If you decide to do it, read the instructions carefully.

    One other piece of advice, though you probably don't need it now, be sure to make a backup of the virgin rom before you install the theme!! Then make a backup after you have installed the theme and have everything setup the way you like it. :)

    Good luck and have some fun with those roms and themes!!
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2010
  10. AllYourBass
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    AllYourBass New Member

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    Thanks for the help, all. I am now running Ultimate Droid and would like to use the NEXDeep theme, but I'm not quite sure how to install it after reading/watching some vids. I tried using MetaMorph, but it said there wasn't an XML file in the .zip. Is there an alternative method?
  11. huskerkate
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    huskerkate Premium Member Premium Member

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    a theme is installed just like a rom - install the theme zip file thru recovery. the only difference is that you don't wipe data or cache - just install it right over the rom.
  12. sandbagger40
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    sandbagger40 New Member

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    Rooted droid 1 using soup or root

    I just rooted my Droid 1 using Soup or Root. Super easy! I installed setcpu and now I'm wondering what next?I've read on some threads that I need to flash sprrecovery onto my phone. Is this true? Any other steps necessary to enable changing roms or kernels?
  13. AllYourBass
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    AllYourBass New Member

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    Ah, so then I'd have to rename it update.zip? (That would make sense to me, assuming it just updates files over the ROM rather than replacing them)
  14. furbearingmammal
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    furbearingmammal Super Moderator

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    ROM Manager can flash SPRecovery or clockwork recovery. Either works. See link one in my sig for more information on what and how with rooting.

    Sent from my Droid using DroidForums App
  15. huskerkate
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    huskerkate Premium Member Premium Member

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    if you're using SPRecovery, then you need to name it update.zip. but if you do, make sure you rename your rom update.zip file first - you can't have 2 "update.zip" files at the same time. but if you're using ClockworkMod Recovery, you don't need to rename to update.zip.
  16. AllYourBass
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    AllYourBass New Member

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    I'm all themed and ROM'd! Thank you for all your help...way easier/less perplexing than the first guide I followed!

    By the way, I love both the quotes in your sig. I can't really decide whether I think Fletch's or Bill Murray's is funnier :)
  17. me_droid
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    me_droid New Member

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    I'm rooted (droid 1) using sprecovery. As is with frg22d and overclock widget I can get to 800 but no further. I just want to see if I can overclock to 1000. I just need a new kernel right? Or do I need a different rom also? If just a kernel what should I use?

    Thanks!
  18. furbearingmammal
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    furbearingmammal Super Moderator

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    There are a ton of kernels out there, and don't use the overclocking widget, it's designed for the Milestone, and the hardware is just enough different I wouldn't trust it. Use SetCPU.

    The stock kernel will only go to 800MHz because that's what's needed for Flash to play on a Linux platform.

    I'd suggest you start with P3Droid's FroYo kernels or ChevyNo1's kernels, preferably his 8-1 kernels if you can find them.

    Index of /froyo/kernels2

    P3Droid Kernels

    Beyond that it would depend on the ROM and your phone. Good luck!

    :EDIT:

    Apparently his 8-1 kernels are no longer available for download so I updated the link.
  19. me_droid
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    me_droid New Member

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    Furbearinganimal, thanks. Played around with different kernels - thank heaven and the creator of clockwork! Got myself in a vicious boot loop after clocking too high with p3's 250 - 1250 kernel. It was able to do 1000 so said what the heck and regretted it!

    Now I'm stable at p3's low voltage 125 - 1100 still running on stock frg22d. I'll take a break from this for a while. Setcpu profiles are great!

    Thanks!
  20. banderbe
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    banderbe New Member

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    Be sure to read the two links in my signature below.

    99% of ROMs are nothing more than builds of AOSP with some add ons and themes.

    Same with kernels. All people are doing is building the stock kernel and making a few changes to add higher clock speeds and lower the voltage a bit.

    Any idiot with some free time and a computer can make a ROM and a Kernel.
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