What you need to know about rooting:

Discussion in 'Rescue Squad Guides' started by pc747, Aug 16, 2010.

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  1. pc747
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    pc747 DF Administrator Staff Member Rescue Squad

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    Lets get started with some basic terminology.

    What is rooting: rooting gives the user permissions that is normally not allowed, this is called superuser permissions. This allow you the ability to write, modify, or change system files. This is indicated by the superuser Icon. So if you see the superuser you are rooted. Why is this important: this allow you to do a number of things from deleting system apps, running apps that require root (superuser permissions), and modify many different set ups on your device. We will also talk about the bootloader and the difference between a locked and an unlocked bootloader, roms, themes, and custom recoveries.

    [​IMG]



    Theme: Theme allows users to modify the look and color of image files for their device. This allows the user to change the color of icons, notification bars, and other images on the phone.

    ROMS
    : ROM, which stands for read only memory, for android is a customized version of the android operating system. A developer modified the original o.s. to make changes that add or change the way it
    looks and feels

    Recovery Mode/image: This is used to boot into a safe mode; this is used to install roms, restore/ create backups, and basically recovery your device from a failed rom.

    Bootloader: This is used to diagnose issues and can be used to change the images on the internal RAM.

    Nandroid: this allow users to restore their device to the same condition of the backup file. It is highly recommended that a nandroid backup be made before flashing (aka installing) any roms.



    The Benefits of rooting





    There are many benefits to rooting, I like the fact that I can back up my device with nandroid backups, loading up custom roms, overclocking my processor to a higher speed.

    I am going to talk about the pro/cons to rooting/roming/theming/overclocking.

    Rooting: Though rooting by itself does not change any features on your device it is against both Manufacturers and cell phone company warranty agreements. If you root your device and it breaks your device then technically you violated your warranty. There are processes to unroot your device and return in to factory specifications. The process of rooting/unrooting will be in in its respective threads for certain devices.

    Flashing Roms
    : Flashing a rom allows users to change the way your system operates. Each rom operates in its own unique way. The negative to flashing a rom is that if you flash a rom with low battery power it could result in boot looping (this is the result of your phone trying to load up and restarting before getting to the start up page). It is recommended that you root with 60% or more battery power. The battery in the notification bar of most android devices do not go yellow until 30% and that is too low to flash a rom or root. It is recommended that a battery widget or something is in place to ensure that a rom is being flashed at 60% or more power. If you do not have 60% charge up the device until you do. The other issue with flashing a rom is the rom causes your device not to function properly, cause constant foreclosing, or bootlooping. This can be fixed by rebooting into recovery and restoring the nandroid backup that you made before flashing a rom. After the backup is restored check to ensure the battery is at the magic number of 60% before flashing another Rom. Before flashing any rom it is important to do research about the rom. Has the rom caused problems for other users, what kind of problems, have the problems been fixed, does the rom or dev have a reputation. It is very important that you read and follow the instructions laid out by the developer for installing the rom. If you are not sure take an extra few minutes to get an understanding. The extra 15 mins could save you the headache and pain of having to get your device working again. Take the time to get all the files needed and organized, ensure you understand what is going on, what the rom is suppose to do, and have a back up plan in case the rom fails.

    Overclocking: overclocking allows you to increase your processor speed to a setting higher then recommended by the manufacturer. By overclocking your device you are causing it to work harder and as a result the life of the processor is decreased and both the battery and the processor heats up. Overclocking is done by installing an overclock kernel. Is over clocking needed: no. In all reality o/c may allow your device to run a program a second or 2 faster then normal. Is overclocking beneficial; yes, by overclocking some devices can process apps, web browsing experience, device navigation smoother and faster then at the stock setting. The negatives to overclocking is you can overheat your processor, cause your phone and battery to get hotter then normal causing your battery to drain faster. Though some devices may get hot using nav apps the difference is that if you device is at stock and a nav app burns up your device then your warranty will cover it. If you overclock and an app burns up your device then the manufacturer may not cover it. It is highly recommended that you research the overclock kernel and follow the developers instructions, that you have a monitoring tool to ensure the temperature is not getting too hot. That you create a nandroid backup before installing an overclock kernel. And that you do not install a kernel unless you have at least 60% battery life. If the kernel results in your device boot looping or cause your device to reboot randomly you will need to install a different kernel or restore your nandroid backup. Research is your friend, read up and check for any issues as a result of the installation of different kernels. Remember that the only one responsible for anything happening to your device is you.

    Theme: As stated before, themes are the changing of icon colors, borders colors, notification bar colors. Themes can either be done by some one else or by following a guide to do it yourself. Remember to create a backup before installing a theme. Follow all instructions by the developer or the guide to theme.

    Rooting provides an opportunity to mod you device in ways to customize it the way you choose. But there are ways to customize you device with out rooting. If you decide to root and customize your device it is always recommended that you understand what is going on before you do it. If you install an app that roots and install roms for you and you have no clue what is going on or how to root manually, then if a problem arises you will not know what to do to resolve it. Being that its your hard earned money, it is important that you know what is on your phone, who made it, and how to install and remove it. If you are unsure what to do then you should get a full understanding before continuing. The last thing you want is to have a $600+ device that is a paperweight while you panic figuring out what to do.

    The Process Of rooting and flashing roms/kernels







    The method of flashing different roms and kernels are listed with their respective roms and developers. Pay attention to which recovery image you have, is the rom compatible with your device, is the rom compatible with your recovery image, what method is required to install, are there any prerequisites, have the developer noted any problem or issues, have other users noted any problem or issues, the method to uninstall the rom, does the rom only work with specific kernels, or kernels work with specific roms. Make sure a nandroid backup is performed before installing and that you have 60% or more battery life.

    I have come across people who were to scared to root so they give it to a buddy to do or they rely on an app to do it all for you. The problem with that is if your buddy install a rom and the rom conflicts with your device you will not know how to fix it. This thread is meant to educate you so you can learn the basics to install your own roms, or if an app does install it for you, you will be prepared to fix any problems that may arise.

    It is important to understand what you are putting on your device, what effect it may have, and what does it alter. Unless you are advanced I do not recommend beta testing of roms. If the rom does not have a good reputation then more then likely you will experience the same problem other are experiencing. Give yourself ample time to flash a rom and deal with potential issues. I would not flash a rom at work, right before work, or during a lunch break. If you have an issue then you may not be able to get or give the attention needed to fix the problem.

    Attached Files:

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  2. pc747
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    pc747 DF Administrator Staff Member Rescue Squad

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    Examples of Recovery Images:




    SPrecovery:
    [​IMG]

    Sprecovery or SirPsychos Recovery image, was created by Sirpsychos for the droid. It is used to install roms (through update.zip), restore nandroid files, can access sd card (through mount enable mass storage), and perform factory resets.



    Clockwork Recovery Image


    [​IMG]









    http://www.koushikdu...very-image.html


    Clockwork was created by Koush an is a recovery image that is used on multiple android devices: Droid Eris, Droid, Droid Incredible, Hero, Dream, Nexus One, Sapphire, MyTouch, Desire, Evo, Pulse Mini, and will possibly be available for future android devices with root access.

    Clockwork works with Rom manager, which is a n app that install roms, reboot into recovery, and install kernels for the user.





    [​IMG]







    Amon RA:



  3. YankInDaSouth
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    YankInDaSouth Theme Developer Theme Developer

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    Great post!!

    Just chiming in to :bump:
  4. pc747
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    pc747 DF Administrator Staff Member Rescue Squad

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    Android Debug Bridge (ADB)


    Android Debug Bridge (adb) allows you to communicate with your android device through your computer. Terminal emulators allow you to communicate commands to your device with out the need of adb (computer).

    Here are an example of commands posted on XDA by OP Brandenk:

    Through ADB

    Pull apps off phone onto computer
    Code: adb pull /system/sd/app app
    adb pull /system/sd/app-private app-private Push apps back to phone from the computer
    Code: adb push app /system/sd/app
    adb push app-private /system/sd/app-private Delete existing apps on SD
    Code: adb shell rm -r /system/sd/app
    adb shell rm -r /system/sd/app-private
    Through Terminal

    Partition SD card - This erases everything on your SD card (*size* being the size of the FAT32 partition)
    Code: $ su
    # cd /data
    # wget http://64.105.21.209...b/droid/sdsplit
    # chmod 555 sdsplit
    # /data/sdsplit -fs *size* (add -nc to the end for JFv1.5ADP)
    From the Recovery Screen

    Sending an update file to your SD card:
    Code: adb shell mount /sdcard
    adb shell rm /sdcard/update.zip
    adb push *filename* /sdcard/update.zip
    From Fastboot

    Restoring a nandroid backup - Start command-prompt/terminal cd to the nandroid folder and enter following commands
    Code: fastboot erase boot
    fastboot erase recovery
    fastboot flash system system.img
    fastboot flash boot boot.img
    fastboot flash userdata data.img
    fastboot flash recovery recovery.img
    fastboot reboot

    As you can see unlike when using the android debug bridge, terminal emulator does not have adb preceding its command prompts.


    examples:


  5. pc747
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    pc747 DF Administrator Staff Member Rescue Squad

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  6. pc747
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    pc747 DF Administrator Staff Member Rescue Squad

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    How to install a rom using clockwork




    In the video the person was explaining the method to install froyo when the nandroid file was released. To install a custom rom the method would be the same as how he showed installing a kernel. You just put the zip file on the root of your sdcard (do not have to rename the file) and just find the file similar to how he did with the kernel.
  7. pc747
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    pc747 DF Administrator Staff Member Rescue Squad

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    How to make a Nandroid Backup

    Full System Backup Using Nandroid

    by Root Your Droid on Jan.20, 2010, under Guides, Root
    As you learned in the Custom Recovery Image guide, SPRecovery is a powerful recovery replacement that allows you to make full system backups. What do we mean by “full system backup?” It is a package created by Nandroid, a utility within SPRecovery, that contains all of the data and system information on your phone. In essence, it’s a direct 1-to-1 copy of your Droid’s software. We can take this copy and save it in case something goes wrong. If we don’t like the way our Droid operates after a certain hack or if we brick it completely, we can take this backup and restore our phone to a working state.
    It’s a very simple process and does not require a computer at all. I recommend making a Nandroid backup at least once a month and before every major hack you perform on the Droid. You can never be too safe, and it would be a nuisance to backup to an earlier state that does not have your most recent data. Remember, save often; avoid frustration.
    Disclaimer
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG] (1/5)
    Requirements:

    [​IMG]
    Step 1: Boot into SPRecovery
    Power down the Droid completely.
    While holding “X” on the physical keyboard, hold the power button to turn on the phone. You may let go of the power button, but do not let go of X.
    [​IMG]
    After a few seconds, a green-gold colored Android logo should appear behind the SPRecovery Console menu.
    [​IMG]
    You may now let go of X and are now ready to perform a Nandroid backup.
    [​IMG]
    Step 2: Perform Backup
    From the SPRecovery menu, use the directional pad to navigate to “backup/restore”. Hit the gold, center button to select it. This will open a new menu with 4 options. For now, we will only concern ourselves with the “Simple Nandroid backup”. Select it at this time.
    [​IMG]
    Once the process has begun, do not power off the phone or press any buttons. At the bottom of the screen, you will see a progress bar showing the progress of the system backup. In orange text, you will also see what is currently operating.
    [​IMG]
    After a few minutes, the backup process will be complete. You will see “(done)” towards the bottom.
    [​IMG]
    You have now successfully backed up your Droid’s system. Next, you will learn how to restore a backup you’ve made.
    [​IMG]
    Step 3: Perform Restore
    Navigate to the “backup/restore” menu until you see the 4 Nandroid options. This time we will select “Simple Nandroid restore (latest)”.
    [​IMG]
    Once again the process is completely automatic. Just like in the backup, you will see a progress bar and informative text. After a few minutes, the restore process will be complete. You will see “(done)” towards the bottom.
    Using “Simple Nandroid restore (latest)” is useful if you simply want to return to your most recent backup. However, if you want to restore to a specific backup out of a group, you will need to select “Advanced Nandroid restore”. The first menu option is “Choose backup”; select this.
    [​IMG]
    You will now be presented with a list of your backups. If you’ve only made one, it will be the only option. Select the backup you’d like to revert to.
    [​IMG]
    It will take you back to the previous menu where you can select and deselect certain areas of the backup to restore. You will also see the chosen backup displayed on the top. Keep the default options of BOOT, DATA, and SYSTEM checked and select “Perform Restore”.
    [​IMG]
    After a few minutes, the backup process will be complete. You will see “(done)” towards the bottom. You have now successfully restored your Droid’s system. When you are ready, press power until you back out to the main SPRecovery menu. Select “reboot system now” to reboot and finish loading your backup. Hopefully you won’t ever need to use this, but if you do, it’s a lifesaver that could help avoid frustration.

    This is not my work but the work of biglou from rootyourdroid
    __________________
    [​IMG]



    2.2 based rom o/c 1.2 ghz:motdroidhoriz:
    List of Custom Roms: Custom Roms - Droid Forum - Verizon Droid & the Motorola Droid Forum

    help us help you:
    if you need to know the basics of rooting, including how to install a rom via sprecovery and clockwork recovery, see here: http://www.droidforums.net/forum/res...t-rooting.html

    http://www.droidforums.net/forum/hac...ot-unroot.html

    when you ask a question state the following:
    1) how much battery life and when was the last time you charged it.
    2) are yo running sprecovery or clockwork/rom manager
    3) If you followed a guide what step did you get hung up on.

    Following these steps will save both of us time, and save us from asking you those questions.
  8. pc747
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    pc747 DF Administrator Staff Member Rescue Squad

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    For further details on how to root your particular device please see the hacking/rom section(s) for your device.
  9. pc747
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    pc747 DF Administrator Staff Member Rescue Squad

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    I think it is time to discuss sbfs.

    what is a sbf: Sbf is a file extension that contain data files. For what we use it for it contains the phone files that motorola uses to flash their devices to factory out of the box settings.
    Sbfs are flashed using a program called rsdlite. Rsdlite basically pushes the file to your phone through the bootloader.
    Because motorola has been updating their bootloaders with each update you can not use a previous build sbf on a newer system build. Example: If the droid 2 is currently running 2.3.20 you can not use a 2.2.20 sbf file to fix your device it will result in your device being locked up. Technically only authorized phone carriers are allowed to use and program a device with rsdlite.
    It is very important that the user follow the instructions clearly when using an rsdlite program.
    The basics directions are:

    1) make sure you have a battery atleast at 60-70% power
    2) you have the correct sbf files for your device and for your current build.
    3) you have the drivers installed for your device (can be obtained from the motorola website)
    4) you boot into the bootloader.
    5) open rsdlite program
    6) connect you device
    7) find the sbf file and click start
    8) allow device to program, important that you do not disconnect device until it is complete.

    Here are some video examples of rsdlite:









    ^Since I wrote that guide things have changed such as now being able to use older sbfs of the droid x. But the point is that sbf restores system folders to out of the box settings. Factory reset wipes data to out of the box settings. Rooting and installing a custom recovery ad/or rom changes your system folders so a factory reset will only wipe system data. For example I am running a custom rom on my device and I notice my phone freezes. Doing a factory reset will remove all my app and erase all my system data but when I reboot I will still be on that rom because factory resets do not rewrite the system to the way it was before I rooted. Sbf will rewrite the system to what ever file is on that sbf. If you have a motorola 2.3.4 sbf then when you run it it will rewrite your phone back to that. Now after running sbf you have to immediately reboot into motorola system recovery and do a factory wipe. The reason is that sbf's rewrite the phone but when it boots up it still have files from before which will conflict with each other resulting in a reboot loop or not booting at all (aka being stuck at the Red motorola logo). To resolve that we wipe data and now your system files have been rewritten with a clean factory reboot making it out of the box new
  10. pc747
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    pc747 DF Administrator Staff Member Rescue Squad

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    This thread is currently going through a heavy overhaul to update and reorganize the information. Any one think there is something in here we need to add please pm me or another staff member. This thread will not have the method for rooting individual devices. Being android is growing like wild flowers and constantly updating we will not have the time to keep it updated. This is meant to educate users on the basics of android so they will feel more comfortable with using adb and navigating through their devices.

    - Thanks Droid Forums staff.
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