Android Hacking (The Complete Guide)

Posted by Ali Reda | Posted in | Posted on 1/30/2012

You do not need to root or unroot the device to update the firmware to update with a stock image
Firmware version: I9100XXKI3.
XX = Europe.
K = 2011.
I = September.
3 = Version.

Pda is the basic firmware, Phone is the modem responsible for wifi/2g/3g, csc is the country specific code - language files/apps etc. You shouldn't consider these as separate, they all combine to make a single firmware (which will have the pda code) ,Kernel is a (small) part of PDA. So flash PDA replaces the kernel. But you can flash kernel separately without changing the other parts of PDA.

Boot-loader: handles booting an OS from ROM,Motorola and HTC especially have been using signed bootloaders that are permanently locked. This means that only the company is able to send updates to the phone, and there is no way for the Android modding community to do so unless they find a way around these measures.

Rooting: A new Android phone runs everything as an unprivileged user to avoid non-tech-savvy users messing it up. Rooting enables access to the superuser mode. You gain full control over the phone, and can optimise settings to boost battery life, etc, but the biggest advantage is that you can add customised ROMs (which is called “flashing”) but adding stock ROM doesn't require rooting. It even enables you to control, at the baseband level, your phone’s telecom you can install special apps which uses root privilege like Market Enabler

ADB: The Android Debug Bridge (ADB) provides an interface/command-line access to the OS from your PC. It’s bundled with the standard SDK package.

Flash: Flashing is writing something over ROM, derived from the ancient way of flashing chips by fusing components on the chip.
  1. Download the chosen ROM zip file and transfer it to the SD card.
  2. Reboot the mobile and enter recovery mode.
  3. Back up current ROM status, software and data. This is the most important thing to do, as you may end up bricking your phone without it — and remember, there is no recovery from bricking! Nandroid recovery is the name of the recovery file.
  4. Now clear the factory settings and other data, and the Dalvik cache as well.
  5. Next, install the new ROM from the zip file on the SD card.
  6. Reboot, and your job is done.

Nandroid or Nandroid Backup: Much like we back up OS images on PCs, Nandroid backs up an image of the phone’s current state, which can be used in case of errors like Boot Loop or ROM update failure.

Custom Recovery Program: Custom Recovery mode is a command-line interface, available before your current ROM is is equivalent to the BIOS of your computer. It provides access to basic low-level maintenance and recovery tasks. However, to gain full control over your Android phone, you need to wipe the stock recovery image, and flash a new recovery image to gain full control of your device’s administration.Examples of custom recoveries include: Amon Ra Recovery, ClockworkMod Recovery, etc.
RomManager is a root app which allows you to boot into the ClockworkMod Recovery Mod and install roms automatically