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Where can I find stock or custom ROMs for my Android device?

I've thinking about rooting my LG Android for a long time but I've been hesitant because I use it on a daily basis and I'm afraid I might mess it up and not be able to restore it to the previous condition.

The main reason reasons I want to root it are:

  1. Get rid of my providers' bloatware.
  2. Upgrade to Android 2.3 Gingerbread.
  3. Possibly overclock it (how safe/risky is this [on this phone/model]?).

I've never rooted an Android phone before and I would like to get some answers on these questions:

How do I root it?

Sorry if this question seems lame, but I honestly have no idea. I read some threads on the XDA forums and from what I gathered the SuperOneClick application seems to be the way to go, right..? Is there any precautions I should take? Also, I think I also need a to get a new Girgerbread / Froyo ROM compatible with my phone model. What is the "place to go" to get this?

Can I backup the current ROM / state of my phone?

So that if anything goes wrong I can restore it?

Exporting / Importing Contacts and SMSs

I'm not very worried about contacts since most of them are also stored my Google Account, but what about SMSs - is there any way / tool I can use to avoid losing them?

EDIT: Thanks to the links @Matthew posted I've managed to root and save all my phone data, however I'm still stuck regarding the ROM upgrade, I've found a forum thread on XDA that has a 2.3 ROM compatible with my phone model, but it still has some annoying bugs I would rather avoid. I see a lot of hype around CyanogenMod but it doesn't seem to be compatible with my phone (is it?).

So, can I get a 2.3 (or even 2.2) ROM that works on my phone without any major problems? Thanks!


OK, to answer the part of your question that wasn't answered by the questions I linked in the comments: Yes, you can unofficially upgrade to 2.2 or 2.3. This XDA thread has a relatively comprehensive list of ROMs. It looks like all the 2.3 ROMs are pretty buggy, so you should probably go with a 2.2 ROM that looks good to you; after a brief look, the one I would probably try is called "AmberHome". The thread for each particular ROM should have installation instructions.

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