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So I'm pretty new to Android. Just got a new Galaxy S4 from Verizon and it's running VRUAME7. Already rooted of course. Basically right now I'm looking for a way to do a complete backup (nandroid); Not planning on installing any different roms just yet, but wanna play around with some stuff in /system and the like, so I'd like have a backup just incase I screw anything up. From what I've read, you need a custom recovery to do a backup/restore like this. For VRUAME7, it seems the only way to go about this is with Safestrap.

Is there a less intrusive way to do this? I would think a manual backup (pain.. lol) but it seems some of the partitions are inaccessible while Android is running? Also, I'm not sure how to go about restoring that if something would happen.

Is it overkill to install Safestrap just for this purpose (backup/restore)? If this is the best (or only) way to go about this? I'm just curious on some of the implications of SafeStrap. On the developer thread (http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2441441):

TEST #3: Recovery removal leaves device in clean state RESULT: FAIL

I'm not quite sure that this line means... does that mean removing Safestrap? I don't want a permanent installion; I'd like to have choice to remove it or go back to stock if needed.

Also, since this bypasses the bootloader, does this mean every boot will go directly to Safestrap first? As in I'll always have to select to boot the rom each startup?

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