Flashing ROMs like My Wife Drives.

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The Connections Between Chris Lacy, Muggles and Flashing ROMs like My Wife Drives.

 

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It may be hard to see how Chris Lacy is connected to my wife’s driving skills.  I can understand if you are confused, Chris comes from the land down under while my wife’s driving takes place in the Great White North.  Geographically Australia and Canada are rather far apart but if you throw in Muggles and some ROMs to flash it all starts to connect.  Let me explain.

For those that have read my posts before, know that I am a big fan of the RootJunky website.  I guess that is obvious as I always post on his site.  I also visit other tech site that interest me and I enjoy podcasts. One of my favourite podcasts is the blerg, from Chris Lacey .  I have been listening to his podcast for a few months now and I really enjoy it.  He does seem a little harsh toward OEMs, from time to time, but he does it without bias towards any operation system or equipment manufacturer.  I would call him “tech agnostic”, not sure what he would say about that but that is how he comes across to me.  He is an accomplished developer and if anyone is allowed to dish out some harsh criticisms from time to time, it is an accomplished developer.  Dursleys-from-Harry-Potter

Anyway, I have heard him use the term Muggles when referring to people like me, newbs or the uninitiated.  As many of you may know the term Muggle comes from the Harry Potter book series, a Muggle is a person who lacks any sort of magical ability and was not born into the magical world. Muggles also do not have any magical blood. That’s a quote from Google.  Chris uses it to reference those who lack any sort of programing ability and were not born into the computer world or do not have any magical programming blood.  In the Harry Potter books it is a derogatory term, that the privileged few have for their lesser.  I don’t think that Chris uses it in that negative way. I actually like the way he uses it and I think it fits.

I remember the feeling of magic that fell upon me when I followed that first XDA thread, allowing me to flash slimROM on my aging Samsung tablet.  Installing Odin on my PC was done during a new moon.  The recovery was flashed while I danced naked with the witches of Salem.  Booting up the new ROM for the first time I sprinkled the blood of a Unicorn across the screen for good measure.  Just like magic or maybe because of it…….. my tablet booted up and ran like a dream.  It still runs to this day and runs really well on slimROM.  This whole process is very magical to me, so the term Muggle fits.odin-header

Chris Lacy can call me a Muggle anytime and I am OK with that.  I have magical friends like RootJunky to help me out when things go wrong.  Youtube is filled with great videos and XDA is always there.  If you have a problem chances are RootJunky has a video about it or the solution is waiting for you at XDA.  If you follow their magical directions you will be able to work miracles.  This bring me to my wife’s driving.

My wife is a great driver.  She is confident behind the wheel and has a good sense of the road.  A few years back when we were looking for a new vehicle, it was obvious that she would have preferred a high end sports car; too bad that was not in our budget, I would have preferred that too.  Sadly the Corvette in the photo is not ours.  Cars that had stronger engines, stiffer suspension and steering that let you feel the road was where her choices gravitated.  It was really interesting to watch her go through the process of testing cars because I happen to be a mechanical wizard.  To me she is an automobile Muggle.  Someone that is unaware of the magic that lies under the hood. Now just because my wife is a automobile Muggle please don’t think she can’t drive.  She may not understand the difference between 2 stroke and 4 stroke engines or understand what is taking place when you shift gears, but put her behind the wheel and she more than competent, perhaps even talented.  That is exactly how a thought I flashed ROMs, more than competent, perhaps even talented.  That is what I thought but I am not so sure now.

To me, guys like the RootJunky are wizards, Chris Lacey is like a level 20 Magic user and Chainfire is from another dimension. It is funny how many people there are like me.  We flash a few ROMS and then think that we can take down governments with our hacking abilities.  I really have no idea of what I am doing half the time and this became apparent a few weeks back.  When modding my phone, I follow the road as my wife does when she drives but I don’t instinctively hit my apex in the corners.  I would love to tell you how I have become one of the few, someone capable of magic but really I am just good at following directions.  In that respect I guess my wife’s driving is much better than my flashing.  She at least has an inborn talent for understanding space and the car’s place in it.  I am just good at following directions.

My ability to follow direction and my lack of any really Android knowledge became very apparent about two weeks ago.  I wanted to give Cyanogen 13.0 a try but I wanted to try out the CAF variant.  This took a little bit of magic and I…….I am just a Muggle.  I did get CM 13.0 CAF running on my phone but my actual phone app was crashing on me all the time.  Not much of a smartphone if you can’t make phone calls.   After a number of wipes and reinstall things were not getting any better.  So I did what I do best, I followed directions on XDA.  I started from scratch and got my phone back to stock Android. Oh the defeat and shame that I felt.  

It was at this time of defeat that I listened to Chris Lacey’s podcast and heard him used the term muggles again.  That is when all the connections hit me: Chris Lacy, Muggles, flashing ROMs, my wife’s driving and this post was born.

My phone is currently running well with CM13.0, but not the CAF variant.  I have decided to stay away from that.   It was a tough week for this muggle as I struggled through my phone issues. It was a little disappointing realizing  that after a year or two of flashing ROMS I am still driving without really knowing what is happening under the hood. I may never be at the level of a developer but as I have fun in the world that XDA has shown me I will improve day by day.  

Who knows, one day I may be able to flash ROMs like my wife drives!

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Episode Tuesday

Android Factory Reset Protection

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Android Factory Reset Protection

What are the pros and cons of Android factory reset protection? This is a new feature that is included with Android version 5.1.1. First, I have to state that any security measures that can be added to your android device will only improve the safety of your personal data. That being said, you as the owner of the device, should also have the option and control to turn these features on and off as you choose. For example, unlocked bootloaders, carrier unlock, factory reset protection, and Write Protect to name just a few.

Pros

1. Device will not even boot to lock screen without the correct password. Kernel level password check.

2. Using Android device manager, you can remotely locate and/or wipe the data on your device.

3. If your device is lost, stolen, or wiped, only someone with your Google account or screen lock information can use the device.

 

Cons

1. Device protection is automatically turned on when you add a Google account and setup a lock screen password. I list this as a con because it is automatic.

2. If you have Factory Reset Protection turned on and you mess something up, it will not boot or you forgot your password, then you will also not be able to reset it in stock recovery. The only way to fix this is to use a tool like odin, rsd lite, fastboot, or lg flash tool to restore the factory firmware.

3. If you can’t provide your Google account information during the setup process, you won’t be able to use the device at all after factory reset.

 

Sprint put together a great little walk through explaining how to turn on and off Factory Reset Protection. HERE IS THE LINK

Another great read on this subject from Google  HERE

Important: If you reset your Google account password and need to do a factory reset, you need to wait 72 hours after changing your password to reset your device. This is for security purposes.  

 

Samsung Firmware Restore

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Samsung Firmware Restore Plus Unbrick

In this tutorial I will be covering two programs that can restore your Samsung phone or tablet. The first program is Odin, a great tool that interfaces with a Samsung device while it is in download mode. The Second program is Kies or Kies 3, another great tool offered by Samsung to help customers manage their tablet or phone. Kies can do a lot more then just restore your device, but in this post I will only be covering the restore and update functions. (NOTE) Odin program is designed only for Windows PC. Samsung Kies works with Windows or mac. Lets start with Odin Instructions, which is my preferred way of unbricking and restoring my devices.

Flashing Firmware with Odin Requirements

1. Samsung phone or tablet

2. USB cable to connect device to your computer

3. Samsung Drivers downloaded and installed

4. Download Odin v3.09

5.  Download your devices latest firmware. (NOTE) The best way to find out what device and firmware you need is to go into phone settings, then about phone. Look at System Version plus build number. Between these you should be able to figure out the firmware you will need. Another good thing to find out is the device code name. Normally a quick Google search can accomplish this task. If you don’t know this info and your device is bricked, then start Googling it. You can get your Samsung firmware from my server or SamMobile.com

 

Instructions

(NOTE) Before you start this process, it is a good idea to backup all your data and fully charge your device. Also, this process will wipe all your data off the device and return it to like new. There are some customized firmware out there that removes the wiping data part of the restore, if you can find them. I check XDA developers site if I am looking for the NO WIPE FIRMWARE

1. Extract (unzip) the firmware file to desktop.

2. Extract Odin zip-file to desktop also.

odin folder

4. Open Odin v3.09

odin

5. Reboot phone into Download Mode (press and hold Home + Power + Volume Down buttons) from the powered off state.

6. Connect your device to the PC and wait until your drivers install and you get a blue sign in Odin. You should see a com plus a number.   For example: COM 4 Added in the odin program.

odin connected

7. Add the firmware file by pressing the AP / PDA. After selecting your firmware file, Odin will check the MD5 to make sure you have a good download.

odin AP

8. Make sure re-partition is NOT ticked.

9. Click the start button, sit back and wait a few minutes. (NOTE) most firmware restore will take about 10 minutes to flash and then the device will reboot and you need to give it another 10 minutes to boot up. Once the device is fully booted, you can close Odin and unplug your device. DO NOT unplug the device while flashing firmware as this could hard brick your Samsung device.

 

 

Flashing Firmware with Kies Requirements

1. Samsung phone or tablet

2. USB cable to connect device to your computer

3. Download and install Kies or Kies 3 software whichever your device needs.

4. Find your Device Model number and IMEI number. You can find your device model number in download mode. It will be called Product Name or model. The IMEI number can be found under the back cover; sometimes under the battery on the device. (NOTE) if you have a tablet you will need your Serial Number which should be printed somewhere on the back of the device.

Instructions

(NOTE) Before you start this process it is a good idea to backup all your data and fully charge your device. Also this process will wipe all your data off the device and return it to like new. There are some customized firmware out there that removes the wiping data part of the restore, if you can find them. I check XDA developers site if I am looking for the NO WIPE FIRMWARE

1. Reboot phone into Download Mode (press and hold Home + Power + Volume Down buttons) from the powered off state.

3. Connect your device to the PC and wait until your drivers install. This might take a couple minutes. (NOTE) The Samsung drivers got installed when you installed kies software.

4. Start the Kies program you downloaded and installed on your computer.

Kies recovery

5. Click on Tools on the top bar of kies and select Fimware upgrade and initialization. Then enter your model and IMEI numbers, then click OK.

Kies Download firmware

6. You will now see this screen below and just click start Upgrade to restore the device. Kies will find the right firmware for your device and start to download it. This step will take some time; you may have to come back in a hour if your internet connection is slow. Most new devices have 1.5GB firmware files so this is going to take awhile.

Kies Start upgrade

(NOTE) Do not unplug the usb cable from the device during the Firmware Download or it will freeze and you will have to start the download all over again.

Kies firmware downloading

kies firmware updatekies restored device

Once the firmware is at 100% the device will reboot and it may boot to recovery and install your cell radios or may just reboot. Sit back and wait another 5 to 10 minutes and your device will finish booting up and you will be fully restored and/or unbricked. Go through the setup on the device and enjoy your fixed device 🙂

Hope you enjoyed this tutorial.  Check out the rest of my site for tons of great videos on many Samsung devices.

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