Lineage OS is taking CyanogenMod place

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Lineage OS Android Distribution

As many of you know CyanogenMod has officially shut down as of December 25 2016. Lineage OS is looking to continue CM work under this new distribution. A company pulling their support out of an open source project does not mean it has to die. Lineage OS is just getting started and needs all the help it can get to really create some momentum. Lineage is looking for Build Slaves and Build Mirrors to help them out if you have something available to share please contact them HERE. They have already lunched there Gerrit, IRC, Github, and Reddit with a Wiki to follow soon. I am glad that someone has stepped in to fill the huge shoes of CyanogenMod in the Android community and I am really looking forward to see what Lineage has to offer and doing some reviews on it. I hope to see some new players with some amazing new customization in this new Android custom OS.  LINEAGE OS NEW DOWNLOAD PAGE CAN BE FOUND HERE

If you are wanting to stay up to date on any developments with Lineage OS, I would recommend following them on Twitter. I know I will be. What are your thoughts on this new Lineage OS?  Please comment below.

RootJunky Out.

Sony Xperia Bootloader Unlock Tutorial

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Sony Xperia Bootloader Unlock Tutorial

unlockbootloader_phones

Sony just like many other manufacturers has there own Bootloader Unlock program.  This program is designed for Developers but can be used by anyone to get greater control over there Android device.  In most cases unlocking the bootloader on your Sony Xperia device will void the warranty. The best practice is to fully test the operation of your device before you unlock the bootloader. Most of the time when you unlock your bootloader it will wipe data factory reset the device so make sure you backup everything of importance before starting this process. Now that the WARNINGS are out of the way lets get into this tutorial.

Directions you will need to unlock the bootloader on your Sony Xperia device

Install the Android SDK or just the ADB and fastboot files extract the adb and fastboot files to a folder.

If you are on windows you may need the drivers for your device also and HERE is a great place to look for them

adb fastboot files

 

In your device, open the dialler and enter *#*#7378423#*#* to access the service menu.

Tap Service info > Configuration > Rooting Status. Check if Bootloader unlock allowed says Yes. Also write down your IMEI from this screen.

Screenshot_2016-06-05-06-05-13Screenshot_2016-06-05-06-05-24

Now that you have your files setup and your IMEI number written down you can go to the SONY DEVELOPER UNLOCK BOOTLOADER SITE

Select your Sony Xperia device from the list at the bottom of the site and click continue.

On the next page you need to enter your email address so that Sony can verify that you arent a bot and sent you a link with your unlock code.

Open your email account and look for email from Sony with this in it. “You have requested to unlock the boot loader of your Xperia™ device. To verify this, click the following link: Click Here To Proceed”

Once the website loads up you will need to enter your IMEI number that you wrote down earlier or dail *#06# from the phone dailer to view your IMEI number.

IMEI2

Once you submit your IMEI you will get the rest of the directions to unlock the bootloader like below.

sony commands

Now that you have the full directions from Sony its time to unlock the bootloader on your Xperia device.

These direction will be for windows but it is basically the same for mac and linux.

  1. Turn on developer Options on your device and enable adb debugging. outlined in picture above.
  2. Open your adb and fastboot folder. Then with your mouse right click and select open a command window here. Alternative is to open command prompt and CD to the adb and fastboot folder.
  3. Now enter this command ( adb devices ) in the command window. you should have a popup on the phone to allow adb from this computer. allow it
  4. run command ( adb devices ) again this time you should see your serial number followed by the word device. if you get this far it means that your drivers and adb are working properly.  See picture below

adbsss

5.  From here lets reboot the device to bootloader mode with command ( adb reboot bootloader ) or follow sonys lead by powering off the device then press the Volume up button at the same time as you connect the other end of the USB-cable.  Either method will reboot the device to bootloader mode.

6.  Now run command ( fastboot devices ) again this will return with your device serial number and say fastboot after it.

fastbootssss

7.  Finally we can send the Unlock command that we got from Sony. Mine is ( fastboot -i 0x0fce oem unlock 0xE30FD3E75A61F33C ) but yours will very.

8.  look at your phone and follow any directions that come up on the screen and then thats it your done.

Once the process has fully finished then you can send command ( fastboot reboot ) to boot the device back up again. First boot up will take much longer then normal, it could take as long as 10 minutes to boot up.

Now that you have unlocked your bootloader you can easily install custom roms with cool hacks and mods. Root access and using root apps is in your near future. If you want to learn more about your sony device check out some of my video tutorials HERE

RootJunky Out

TWRP 3.0.0-0 Released with new features

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TWRP 3.0.0-0 Released

Screenshot_1970-04-22-23-14-54Screenshot_1970-04-22-23-14-25Screenshot_1970-04-22-23-14-39

New features in TWRP 3.0.0-0:

  • Completely new theme – Much more modern and much nicer looking (by z31s1g)
  • True Terminal Emulator – Includes arrow keys, tab and tab completion, etc. (by _that)
  • Language translation – It won’t be perfect and especially some languages that require large font files like Chinese & Japanese won’t be availble on most devices. Also some languages may only be partially translated at this time. Feel free to submit more translations to OmniROM’s Gerrit. (mostly by Dees_Troy)
  • Flashing of sparse images – On select devices you will be able to flash some parts of factory images via the TWRP GUI (by HashBang173)
  • Adopted storage support for select devices – TWRP can now decrypt adopted storage partitions from Marshmallow
  • Reworked graphics to bring us more up to date with AOSP – includes support for adf and drm graphics (by Dees_Troy)
  • SuperSU prompt will no longer display if a Marshmallow ROM is installed
  • Update exfat, exfat fuse, dosfstools (by mdmower)
  • Update AOSP base to 6.0
  • A huge laundry list of other minor fixes and tweaks

WARNING: This is our first release in a long time. We have a lot of new and somewhat aggressive changes in this new release. The changes to the graphics back-end may cause some devices to not boot up properly or have other display-related issues. If you are not in a position to reflash an older build of TWRP, then wait until you are or at least wait until others have tried the new TWRP 3.0.0-0 for your specific device. You don’t want to end up with a non-working recovery and have to wait several hours or days to get to a computer to be able to fix it.

Team Win Recovery Project has been my favorite recovery ever since it was released. Dees_Troy and his team have done one amazing job at keeping up with this custom recovery and i am really thankful to them for all there hard work. If you love TWRP as much as i do please send then a little donation to say thanks 🙂

Donate to TWRP HERE

Going a quick search of the TWRP site it looks like there are already a bunch of official supported device that have builds of TWRP 3.0.0-0 available today and more to come soon i am sure, here are some of them.

Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, Nexus 9, LG G4, Moto X Pure Edition, Moto G 2015, Galaxy Note 5. Many more are available these are just some of the mosts popular.

Click HERE to see if this new version of TWRP is available for your device.

 

Discovering the Hidden Power of Android

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How to harness the full power of your Android devices.

 

Android Devices today are very powerful; many of them have faster processors than your 5 year old laptop, and a higher screen resolution than that old 480p tv you bought 10 years ago. But even today, we are still faced with the fact that there are just some things that you cannot do on a smartphone that you can do on a laptop. Things like using a keyboard and mouse, or a wired controller, or being able to get into the main filesystem of your device etc. But today I am going to be showing you a few neat tricks that you can use to make these things possible.

 

Keyboard and mouse support using an OTG cable

Have you ever wanted to use your phone like a computer, to write that book report, or important document you are working on? But then you realize that your phone does not have a usb port to actually support this feature? Well all is not lost, because there is a way to make this possible. You can use a USB OTG cable to harness the power of using a keyboard, and mouse and to plug in usb drives to Android. Not only are these cables very useful, they are very cheap, some selling for just a few dollars depending where you get them from. They are very easy to find on Ebay.com and Amazon.com.

51davjmWnSL._SL1000_

Best of all, you do not have to do much of anything to get this working, since android already has this support of keyboards and mice built in. As for usb support, all phones are different and some phones require root and a root file browser, such as ES File Explorer, or Solid File Explorer to take advantage of using USB OTG storage.

Screenshot_2015-12-29-10-10-20Screenshot_2015-12-29-10-10-46Screenshot_2015-12-29-10-14-56

How to gain access to the hidden parts of Android

For those of us who like to be able to tinker and tweak our devices, or to be able to see what makes our devices tick, there is a way for us to be able to do this. Since Android is a form of linux, we are able to gain what we call Root access to a device. This root access gives us the ability to do many advanced tasks on our phones that are not possible to for the average user to do. Things such as:

  • Access and change the main filesystem using a file browser
  • Access the terminal emulator
  • Add or remove system apps to free up space
  • Backup and restore apps using titanium backup
  • Change the color and look of many parts of the system, such as the status bar menu items etc.
  • Flash a custom recovery, and install custom roms
  • Overclock the processor to make the phone faster, or underclock it to save battery life
  • Use a custom audio driver such as Viper for Android
  • The possibilities are basically endless!

 

Rooting not only does all of this to your current device, but you can also do this with an older android device and give it a second life; the after life 🙂

 

Conclusion

So to sum it all up, the possible ways to use your Android device to the fullest are basically endless. The features that i have talked about here are just scratching the surface when it comes to the possibilities that Android holds. So before you go and think about buying that next Iphone, think to yourself what things can I do with an Android that i can’t do on Iphone.

 

By: Tristin L.

Amazon Fire 5th gen SuperTool

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Amazon Fire 5th gen 7in tablet SuperTool

amazon fire 5th

NOTE This tool has been Tested and built for the Amazon Fire 5th gen 7in tablet. some features may work on other 5th gen tablets but use it at your own risk.
Features
WINDOWS VERSION
1. ADB driver install and test
2. Install Google play store plus remove ads on some fire os versions
3. block ota updates
4. boot device to twrp recovery 5.0.1 and below
5. Install FlashFire App
6. root amazon Fire 5th gen on android 5.3.1 and below
7. replace stock fire launcher with Nova launcher
8. remove lock screen ads on fire os 5.3.1 and below
9. Update SuperTool Files

Screen Shot 201

LINUX AND MAC VERSION
Install Google play store plus remove ads on some fire os versions
block ota updates
Install FlashFire App
root amazon Fire 5th gen on android 5.3.1 and below
replace stock fire launcher with Nova launcher
remove lock screen ads on fire os 5.3.1

New Version of SuperTool available as of 10-5-16

Link to Supertool HERE

video instructions HERE

Big thanks to all the devs that have put is some awesome work on this device.

 

please comment and let me know if it has any problems or if you have a feature you would like added

Thanks RootJunky

 

If you like this SuperTool then you should really check out some of my other Supertools batch scripts HERE

Android Launchers

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One of the best things about Android, it gives you the ability to be different, to separate yourself from the rest and it does not matter who you are.  You could be a global juggernaut bent on touchwizing the planet or a lonely Star Trek loving geek, living in your parent’s basement. It does not matter because the Android Open Source Project lets you “be together, not the same.”

This will be part one of three, in a series about Android launchers. We will look at the good, the bad and the ugly and try to be as honest as we can be about a very subjective topic – personal taste.  Although i really like Android’s new slogan,  “be together, not the same”  and it is my preferred platform, I  want to end the series with a simple question…. Is all this choice worth it?

Let’s find out……

In this post I would like to look at two of the very best launchers.  They are Nova Launcher and Action Launcher 3. There are a lot of launchers out there and even more debate on which are the best launchers.  I have tried a number of them and the Screenshot_20151011-210528reason i see these two as the best is customizations and stability.   I have installed a number of launchers that slow my phone down and that i just can’t accept.  An unstable launcher just leaves you hanging. Literally, you are left hanging waiting for your processor to work through the math.

Action launcher 3

Action launcher 3 (AL3)is clean yet customizable.  It sticks to a stock android feel but adds some really beep modifications.  One of AL3 key features are the icon Covers and Shutters.   

From AL3’s webpage:

Covers: an innovative take on traditional folders. Tapping a Cover loads an app, swiping a Cover opens a hidden folder which you have customized.

Shutters: swipe a shortcut to reveal an app’s widget. Allows you to say preview your inbox or Facebook feed without opening the app.

Screenshot_20151011-210544

Have a look at the screenshot.  You can see that Games, Fitness and Google are covers, marked with a square, and contain apps within.  Hangouts is a shutter, marked with two horizontal lines, and previews the app with swipe.  If you look closely you may notice something about the Covers and Shutters.  They are automatically coloured to matched your app!  This is a small feature but it speaks to why i like action launcher.  The developer wanted to do his best and it shows.  When a developer takes time for the small things they gain my respect, It does not matter if you like another launcher over this one, you can’t help but respect the effort put into it and it does not stop there.

 

There are two other things that i want you to notice about this screenshot.  Look at the yellow of the google search bar and the blue of folder(Cover) background.  It all matches with the wallpaper!  AL3 calls it Quick Theme and it quickly impresses.  This feature can modify the status bar, search box, all apps background, quickdrawer and folder background all to match with your wallpaper.   You can play with it in the setting but every time i use it i really like the chosen colour scheme.  It’s not the biggest change a launcher can do but it is well thought out and the extra touches to make it complete.

There are lots of other customization and short cuts that AL3 can do but most are common to other launchers.  I should mention that the search bar can be a powerful tool for someone
using this launcher.  However, what really separates it from the pack is its stability and small touches like the quick theme.  This is a launcher that will take care of you, it will let you pick a wallpaper and then make everything look good for you.   That is why it is my second favorite launcher.  

 

NOVA Launcher

 

There are things that other launchers can do that Nova can’t but Nova is invisible and totally customization.  I can get lost in the infinite settings and options.  Nova does not coddle you like AL3 does.  You can see on this screenshot that Games, Fitness and Google are not marked as folders.  You need to remember how you have set yourself up with Nova.  You can see that the google search bar is white.  It has not been modified to match the colours of your screen.  All of these things are not negatives to me because you are actually free to modify anything and everything.  I could list what you can modify but that would make this article boring, just know that whatever it is, it can be modified on Nova.  Is your notification bar hard to see with your white Screenshot_20151011-210945wallpaper?  Change them to a dark icon theme.   Don’t like unread icon badges? That’s ok, don’t use them or if you do, place them in any corner you wish. This is the tinker’s launcher but that is not why it is my launcher of choice.  

Once you are done playing with the setting and options it works and works.  I sometimes even forget that i am using a launcher.  I will jump onto my wife’s Nexus 5 and only then do i realize “Ohh this is stock android, i forgot”.  

Not sure what kind of pixie dust they are putting in the programming.  What i do know is that it works well.  My trusty Nexus 5 is not a slouch but it can stumble if it has too many graphic heavy games thrown at it.  I notice the lag with other launchers and to a lesser degree with Action Launcher 3 but it runs like stock with Nova.  You can’t notice that is it there, it becomes completely invisible and that is why it earns my spot as top launcher.  

 

Nova may be my top launcher but it is not the most fun. Next week, in part two we will review two of the funnest launchers around.  Until then let me know your thoughts in the comment section.  Do you use either of these launchers?  Do you have a launcher that you think kicks ass, let me know.   Disagree with my opinion?  What are your thoughts?

 

Both of these launchers took time to develop.  If you have a few bucks kicking around and if you like the launcher, why not support the developer?  It can only lead to more development of new and better launchers.

 

Until next time

E. Tuesday

Samsung Galaxy Note 5 and S6 Edge plus

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Samsung Galaxy Note 5 and S6 Edge Plus

 

 

The Samsung Galaxy Note 5 looks like it will be one amazing phablet that i am really excited to get my hands on. I love the Note line up from the Note 2 through the Note 4 and now the Note 5. The body on this device is nicely designed and looks very premium with the curved edges on the back. I love the way that the s-pen now ejects by pressing it in a little, which is a much needed improvement. Looking forward to see how the Exynos 7420 CPU will perform over last years model with the the qualcomm snapdragon chip and 4GB of DDR4 ram yes please and thank you 🙂  price of this new Samsung Galaxy note 5 will be 699.99 for the 32GB model and 799.99 for the 64GB device. I will probably be picking up the 64GB model as soon as i can. Release data is August 21 2015 but can be pre ordered all ready. That being said I better pre order mine right now. Order your Note 5 or S6 Edge plus HERE

 

phone-left

 

The Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge Plus what can i say here. its a s6 edge that has a bigger screen and the same specs as the Note 5. check the list of specs below. If you wish the s6 edge had a bigger screen then maybe this phone is for you. 🙂 more pictures of the Note 5 at bottom of the post.

Left Samsung Galaxy Note 5.  Right Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge Plus.

NETWORK Technology GSM / HSPA / LTE GSM / HSPA / LTE
2G bands GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
3G Network HSDPA HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1900 / 2100
4G Network LTE LTE
Speed HSPA 42.2/5.76 Mbps, LTE Cat6 300/50 Mbps/ LTE Cat9 450/50 Mbps HSPA 42.2/5.76 Mbps, LTE Cat4 150/50 Mbps
GPRS Yes Yes
EDGE Yes Yes
DISPLAY Type Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors
Size 5.7 inches (~75.9% screen-to-body ratio) 5.5 inches
Resolution 1440 x 2560 pixels (~518 ppi pixel density) 1440 x 2560 pixels (~518 ppi pixel density)
Multitouch Yes Yes
Protection Corning Gorilla Glass 4 Corning Gorilla Glass 4
– TouchWiz UI
– Curved edge screen
BODY Dimensions 153.2 x 76.1 x 7.6 mm (6.03 x 3.00 x 0.30 in)
Weight 171 g (6.03 oz)
SIM Yes Nano-SIM
– Fingerprint sensor (PayPal certified)
– S Pen stylus
– Fingerprint sensor (PayPal certified)
– Samsung Pay (Visa, MasterCard certified)
PLATFORM OS Android OS, v5.1.1 (Lollipop) Android OS, v5.0.2 (Lollipop)
Chipset Exynos 7420 Exynos 7420
CPU Quad-core 1.5 GHz Cortex-A53 & Quad-core 2.1 GHz Cortex-A57 Quad-core 1.5 GHz Cortex-A53 & Quad-core 2.1 GHz Cortex-A57
GPU Mali-T760MP8 Mali-T760MP8
MEMORY Card slot No No
Internal 32/64/128 GB, 4 GB RAM 32/64 GB, 4 GB RAM
CAMERA Primary 16 MP, 5312 x 2988 pixels, optical image stabilization, autofocus, LED flash 16 MP, 2988 x 5312 pixels, autofocus, LED flash
Features Dual Shot, Simultaneous HD video and image recording, geo-tagging, touch focus, face/smile detection, panorama, HDR Geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, Auto HDR, panorama
Video 2160p@30fps, 1080p@60fps, optical stabilization, dual-video rec. 2160p@30fps
Secondary 5 MP 5 MP, 1080p

 

FEATURES Sensors Accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer, heart rate, SpO2 Accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer
Messaging SMS(threaded view), MMS, Email, Push Mail, IM SMS(threaded view), MMS, Email, Push Mail, IM
Browser HTML5 HTML5
Java No No
– Wireless charging (Qi/PMA) – market dependent
– ANT+ support
– S-Voice natural language commands and dictation
– Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic
– MP4/DivX/XviD/WMV/H.264 player
– MP3/WAV/WMA/eAAC+/FLAC player
– Photo/video editor
– Document editor
– Wireless charging (Qi/PMA) – market dependent
– ANT+ support
– S-Voice natural language commands and dictation
– Smart stay
– OneDrive (115 GB cloud storage)
– Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic
– MP4/DivX/XviD/WMV/H.264 player
– MP3/WAV/WMA/eAAC+/FLAC player
– Photo/video editor
– Document editor
COMMS WLAN Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot
Bluetooth v4.2, A2DP, EDR, LE v4.1, A2DP, LE, apt-X
GPS Yes, with A-GPS, GLONASS, Beidou Yes, with A-GPS, GLONASS, Beidou
NFC Yes Yes
Infrared port No No
Radio No No
USB microUSB v2.0, USB Host microUSB v2.0, USB Host
BATTERY Non-removable Li-Po 3000 mAh battery Non-removable Li-Po 3000 mAh battery
 Fast Wireless Charging  Fast Wireless Charging
 Quick Charging  Quick Charging

 

 

 

 

 

gallery-square-noblebox4-noble

gallery-rectangle-noble

Raspberry Pi 2 Model B

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The Raspberry Pi 2 Model B is one cool little device with it you can do tons of fun little projects like a mini linux computer or maybe a web server. Home automation can also be fun like turning on and off lights among many other things. Below is a nice little review on the Raspberry Pi 2 and I am hoping to do some more coverage on this device soon. I will have to come up with a cool project and make a Tutorial video on it. Please let me know if you would like to see something like that.

Pick up this fun little device links belo

Raspberry PI 2

Raspberry PI 2 case

 

 

 

Xposed Framework Lollipop

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Xposed Framework Lollipop Alpha

nexusae0_ic_launcher_thumb

NOTE: That this is still an alpha version and for Lollipop on ARMv7+ devices only. Please install it only if you’re willing to take the risk of boot loops. Just because it’s working fine and stable for me doesn’t mean it will work for everyone the same way. If this brakes your device you may have to flash the firmware to fix it make sure you know how to do that before installing.

How to Check out ARM Version and see if it is 7 or above

  1. Install Android Terminal Emulator  app on your device and open it
  2. Type the followng: getprop ro.product.cpu.abi  OR getprop ro.product.cpu.abi2
  3. It will return with your Arm Version. see picture below

Screenshot terminal

Downloads: Get all files need HERE
xposed-arm-20150213b.zip: Must be flashed with a custom recovery to install the framework.
XposedInstaller_3.0-alpha1.apk: Must be installed to manage installed modules.

Screenshot_2015-02-15-16-20-11Screenshot_2015-02-15-16-20-16Screenshot_2015-02-15-16-20-22

Known issues:
– It seems to boot loop on Samsung stock ROMs. I have received a file which I can use to analyse this issue, but it might take some time.
Update: There’s a difference in the format of *.oat files on Samsung ROMs. I’m trying to find out more

– If everything is working fine, but the app_process version is not displayed, it’s just a display error that can be ignored (will be fixed later).

– Nexus 6 only works if you set selinux to permissive and soft reboot from within the xposed framework app. you can us this Google Play app to change the selinux to permissive.

XDA XPOSED FRAMEWORK OFFICIAL THREAD

Learn how to create a theme

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Learn how to create a theme for your Android device!

Way back in the old android days, people actually made their own themes in the form of a zip file. Crazy right!?! That meant you had to download the ROM, gapps (if needed) and another zip file for the theme you wanted. This also meant that when flashing, you had to flash all 3. Now keep in mind that zip themes were made primarily for stock OEM based ROMs. Your source based ROMs which were typically based off of CyanogenMod had the Theme Chooser, so zip themes weren’t needed.

So why make zip themes now? Well for the same reason they were made before. Not everyone wants to run a potentially buggy custom software. Some people would rather run their TouchWiz, Sense, LG stock or Moto Blur based stock software.(way back in the day it was Moto’s stock UI).  They preferred it simply for one reason, everything worked. You didn’t lose the functionality that made you buy the device in the first place which some times happens with custom roms.

So why are we reading this extremely long article? Well, I’m hoping that you’re reading this because you’re interested in making a zip theme. If you are, then please continue on. For this tutorial, we will be following how to get setup on Windows system.

There are some prerequisites to making a zip theme and here they are:

WinRAR – 32bit 
64bit 

7zip – 32bit 
64bit 

Apktool Files

Java JDK

Notepad++ 

Paint.NET (free image editing tool)

Download and install Java JDK 6 (make sure you get the right OS build and either 32bit or 64bit)
Download an install Winrar. After installing, your zip files will now have an icon that looks like a stack of books.
Download Apktool. After it downloads, right click the zip file and click on “Extract Files…” and extract the Apktool zip to your desktop.
Download and Install Notepad++
Download and install Paint.NET

Getting Started:

One of the first things you’re going to want to do, is take the framework-res.apk and the SystemUI.apk off your phone and put it on your computer. You can do this by various means such as a root file explorer and an sdcard.

For purposes of this guide, we are going to assume you’re editing the SystemUI.apk and the framework-res.apk because these are the 2 main files for making a theme for a ROM.

Now take whatever apks you are editing and move them to your PC.

Now let’s go back to the Apktool folder on your desktop. It should look like this:

apktool

And your folder directory should look like this;

folder directory

 

Now take the apks that you just took from your phone, and put them in the apktool folder like this:

added apks

 

Now go back to your desktop. Now we’re going to hold the “shift” key, and right click on the Apktool folder. On the menu that pops up, select “Open command window here” and you should see this:

 

commandprompt

 

Obviously, your path to Apktool will not be the same as mine, that’s irrelevant. (Note: Anything you type into the command prompt IS case sensitive! Make sure you type everything correctly, or just copy and paste the commands from here!)

In that command prompt window, type the following code:

apktool if framework-res.apk

What this code does, is install the framework-res.apk in case it’s needed to edit any other files (and it will be).

You will see a message in the command prompt that says installation of the framework was successful.

Now it’s time to decompile the SystemUI.apk for edits, for that you will use this command:

apktool d SystemUI.apk

What this command does is tell apktool to “d” or decompile, the SystemUI apk.

Your command prompt should now look like this:

 

Now go back to the Apktool folder on your desktop and you’ll notice there is now a folder in there named “SystemUI” this will be where you make your edits. A few tips: Most of the images you will edit will be in the /res/drawable-hdpi folder. DO NOT EDIT ANY XMLS OR IMAGES THAT END IN .9 THESE CAN CAUSE SERIOUS SYSTEM ISSUES! READ UP ON THEM BEFORE YOU START EDITING ANYTHING IN XML FILES OR .9 IMAGES. When editing images, make sure the image keeps the EXACT same file name. You cannot change the name of any icons, that will come later.

Ok so let’s say that you have now finished all of your image edits and you’re ready to see your own work! That’s the simple part (as long as you didn’t mess anything up lol).

So now after editing, go back to your command prompt window. If you don’t remember how to do it, hold down “shift” and right click on the Apktool folder, then select “Open command window here.”

If you closed the command prompt window earlier, you need to reinstall the framework-res.apk with “apktool if framework-res.apk”

Now in that same command window, type or copy/paste the following:

apktool b SystemUI

This command tells apktool to “b” or build what is in the SystemUI folder, DO NOT put “.apk” after SystemUI or you will get errors.

 

 

Now navigate to the apktool folder again and go the following directory /apktool/SystemUI/dist

Inside there is your newly built SystemUI.apk, however, you’re not going to use it lol. You’re only going to use parts of it.

Rename that new SystemUI.apk to something distinguishable, like “newSystemUI.apk.”

Now right click that new apk and hover over “7zip” and select the top option which is “Open Archive”

Now go back to the apktool folder and open the old SystemUI.apk the SAME WAY! Right click, hover over 7zip, select “Open Archive.”

The same kind of window will pop up.

Now here’s where things get a little tricky.

You’re going to need to put these 2 7zip windows side by side!!!

Now hold down “ctrl” and highlight the following items in the NEW apk window:

res folder

resources.arsc

Now drag and drop both of those items into the OLD apk window.

Close out all windows

Now take that OLD SystemUI.apk which has the new images in it, and place it back on your sdcard.

Use a Root File Explorer on your phone and move the SystemUI.apk to /system

Now press and hold on the file and select “Permissions”

Make sure the permissions look like this:

Now move that apk to /system/app (or priv-app, whichever folder you took it from earlier)

Now reboot

Your phone should boot backup normally and you will see the changes you made.

Now repeat this process for every apk you’re editing.

If your phone fails to boot, you messed something up, seriously you did lol.

A few more tips and notes:

SystemUI’s and framework-res.apk’s are NOT inter-changeable. You cannot take these files from other ROMs and place them in yours.
Again, DO NOT touch the XML files, or the 9 patch images (images that end in .9) until you have read up on them A LOT. There are tons of posts that talk about dealing with .9 images and XML edits.

If you have any questions, please post  comment and I will try my hardest to answer as many as I can. A little later I will write an article on making your own flashable zip file, to put your apks in that way you can flash your theme, instead of copy/paste.

NOW GET OUT THERE AND MAKE SOME THEMES!!!!!