Friday, January 07, 2011

Rooted My Android Phone

I finally got a combination of frustration plus guts to motivate me to root my Samsung Vibrant Android phone (rooting an Android is not illegal or even unethical, it is just a "do at your own risk" activity). I was predictably visited by Murphy a few times, but not involving the actual rooting, and there was never a "have I bricked this phone?" moment.

It is running noticeably faster and more smoothly, and battery life seems much improved. Oh, did I mention I both got rid of Samsung's proprietary, utterly unnecessary TouchWiz "skin", and the long-delayed Android Froyo/2.2 update? Beyond that, I haven't done much to take advantage of root, though I do have a few things in mind.

Things I learned along the way:

  • Installing from SD does not literally mean the actual, physical SD card. For whatever reason, there is also a virtual SD parition in the phones on-board memory.
  • That same virtual SD can get corrupted, so make sure to back up. It gave me a confusing Windows Explorer error, and it took me a while to conclude that I needed to re-format the SD partition. Not sure how it got corrupted.
  • Use Titanium Backup before you flash a custom ROM, it will save a whole lot of re-installation. Oh, and make sure to use the "and system settings" option..
  • XDA Developers is am amazing resource.

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