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55

Manufacturer Websites While they don't usually host ROMs directly, you may find that they have software useful for upgrading stock ROMs, such as Samsung's tool Kies. If you want to upgrade and stay stock then you should try official methods first. Google Flagship Updates Google hosts update packages for the flagship Nexus devices at ...


15

Kernels vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. A lot of those kernels come from the pure stock kernel line of sources found on CAF, what these manufacturers do is take those stock sources, modify them to suit based on the board/chipset used, also, implement their own drivers. Take a good look around you, there's variations of touchscreens, variations of ...


12

Short answer: For security and warranty reasons. Detailed answer: This is mostly a precaution taken by most (not all!) device manufacturers to save them from too many service requests from "playing kiddies" (and the sort of people who want to try everything, even if they are not understanding anything). So those manufacturers took special actions to avoid ...


9

AOSP (Android Open-Source Project) is the project with the open-source parts of Android. It's used as a base by anyone who wants to build or customize an Android ROM. Although new Android features are developed in secret inside Google, when a new Android version is released, all the code changes to the open-source parts get merged into AOSP soon afterwards. ...


8

1) ROM Manager is the de facto app to do two specific things: 1) Install a custom recovery 2) Install a custom ROM (or kernels. Check out ChevyNo1s kernels for the Droid). You need to not worry about any permission problems with this application as pretty much every rooted person uses it. It is also an application provided by Koush, who is a well known ...


8

To answer if Google distributes binaries for your device: No, they do not (Unless you have a Nexus device). They do, however, have the full Android source code available so that if you wanted you could compile the source code for your device. However, that leads into your second question about the drivers and such. Yes, you will need to find the drivers and ...


7

Yes, it is possible to install custom kernels on stock roms. The kernel developer will usually say which roms (or types of roms) the kernel supports. If you are not sure you can try reading the kernel thread, and there will always be poeple saying things like "working great on [firmware version here]". This way you can also make sure that it will work ok on ...


6

Edited to answer the edited question Note: the CyanogenMod and Fresh 3.5 links below are links to EVO Roms as an example - you need to find the correct ROM for your device "Flashing a custom ROM" basically means to load a different version of the Android OS. This site actually explains it very well. A custom ROM is the full Android OS customized by the ...


6

Is a different version of the recovery really needed for different OS versions? No. In case of updating custom roms you're completely right in that the recovery is mostly* independent of the rom used. However phone manufacturers sometimes push out updates that change some vital parts of the phone. For example repartition the phone. This is why sometimes ...


6

In short, it's because of the different ways that Android and MS Windows are distributed. MS Windows is a retail product, sold directly to PC owners. Therefore, Microsoft is responsible for making it run on PCs. PCs are standardized, and (nowadays) have a hardware-discovery mechanism, so Microsoft can design the Windows installer so that it can run on any ...


5

You mean like WhisperCore? Quoting from it's site: By default, WhisperCore encrypts your entire data partition at the device level, and can optionally be enabled for your phone's SD card as well. WhisperCore also includes smudge-resistant screen unlock patterns. Unfortunately it only currently runs on the Nexus handsets.


5

As elderathis said, the Xoom is a pure android device, as for the Desire S, I believe that CyanogenMod is available for that device. It is "pure android", plus some additional tweaks after.


5

The other answers are correct, but fail to point out a couple differences: Permissions System apps are granted the ability to request certain system-only permissions that are never available to user apps. This is not the same as root/sudo/su permissions. One example that I know of and use daily is the ability to reset the missed call notification ...


5

There's probably tons of ways to do this, but here's what I can think of offhand: If you have adb set up on your computer then use it to push the ROM file over: adb push /path/to/ROM /sdcard Upload it to Dropbox, Box, or any other cloud file storage service and then download it via the associated Android app Upload it to a file sharing service like ...


5

The PC architecture is built around commodity parts because it started out as clones of a specific product, the IBM PC, that were specifically designed to be compatible with it, and therefore with each other. Generally speaking, you could take a program or peripheral device from one PC-compatible and put it into another, and expect it to work. That ability ...


5

First, you probably cannot update to Android 3.x as that version was only intended for tablets. Second, no Android version is linked to a specific phone. But each phone needs specific adaptions due to different hardware elements used, so each Android version must be adapted to be usable on the device. Third, for "How can I..." and "Where do I find..." and ...


5

You generally don't need to root the phone to install the custom ROM, you have to root the phone to install a mechanism to install the custom ROM (such as a custom recovery image). Some phones have unlockable bootloaders - you can flash boot and system.img files via the bootloader without the need to root. You can also flash a custom recovery image using ...


5

When referring to AOSP - you are referring to the original source - Android Open Source Project direct from Google, that is the base stock ROM that manufacturers and ROM modders use as a base. Many ROM makers fork the AOSP source for their version, to name but a few: Cyanogenmod Cafogen Replicant Codeaurora AOKP Touchwiz Having an AOSP stock ROM is not ...


5

Root: As you understand, "root" in this context refers to the ability to grant a user the privileges of the root user. It's similar to installing sudo on a linux box (but Android root uses su, so there's that fundamental but small difference). We have a tag-wiki for it which has more information: root. Flashing: In the world of embedded systems, mobile ...


4

It's really that simple. :) And you wouldn't even have to do step 4 (because your NANDROID backup is like taking an image of your phone, that includes all installed apps and data too). If you wanted to do a quick test, you could try installing one app, then restoring to your NANDROID backup. When it's done, it should no longer have that one app you ...


4

It's probably the same thing although ROM is supposed to be the area / location where stuff is only ever written once (during manufacture / initial flashing).


4

You'll need to download official firmware. You can find it by searching "nexus one stock 2.x rom", and XDA might be better than Google. I'd also look up how to use the Android SDK to flash it, probably using flashboot through ADB. I have a Galaxy S which uses another tool, so I can't help with more detail without looking that up myself ;)


4

Usually, Read-Only Memory is called internal storage, and the image of the phone's firmware and OS is the ROM. (That's how we do it on this site, anyways). So your internal storage is 2 GB, and your phone's firmware and OS is installed on that storage space. You can flash new kernels or entire ROMs (kernel + other firmware + OS) as long as they fit on the ...


4

I'd like to try CyanogenMod but my phone isn't in the list of supported phones, is there anything I can do? If you'd search more carefully, you'd find this topic (link). There is CyanogenMod for your phone. But this firmware in early alpha stage of porting. Another great link. If I don't like some ROM I installed I can uninstall it and go back to ...


4

You can generally install CyanogenMod without wiping as long as you're within the same major release (i.e. 7.1 -> 7.2 is okay, 7.1 -> 9.0 would require a wipe to boot properly). Worst case is that you bootloop, usually, so you can always try it and then go back into recovery and wipe if it doesn't work. It's never caused problems for me before and I put ...


4

Unfortunately, that's not how it works :/ Though we would all love the official ICS versions rolled out to the Nexus S and Galaxy Nexus devices, they are designed specifically for the hardware of those phones; thus is the nature of Android. So, if you want something similar, the only way you will be able to get it is a 3rd party ROM. The only official OS ...


4

Have you tried GPSFix kind of apps from Play store? And take a look at web site Samsung Galaxy S2 GPS Problem? SOLVED! which talks about how a battery saving option (disabling repetitive polling of GPS data) causes fix issues and how it can be tweaked using another app, GPS control for SGS2 which is mentioned there. Before starting with these two, just ...


4

Short answer: You can only install ROMs compatible with your device Longer version Different Android devices use different hardware, which requires special drivers (e.g. the camera). Those drivers are sometimes/often proprietary (take e.g. Sony, which almost made it into the AOSP project -- but had difficulties due to those proprietary parts and thus had ...


4

This is actually an important question, and far better to ask now than try it and be stuck with a blank screen! Android ROMs are specific to the device. This is why CyanogenMod and others have the specific device model and code name on them. Even in cases where the deveice looks and feels the same and has the same name e.g. Samsung Galaxy S4: GT-I9505 ...


3

As far as I know, Nandroid uses the yaffs2 file system for storing backups inside the .img files. A quick search on Google points to these instructions on extracting files from a Nandroid backup: First you will need to download and build the "unyaffs" module: svn checkout http://unyaffs.googlecode.com/svn/trunk/ unyaffs cd unyaffs gcc -o unyaffs ...



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