Author Topic: HTC Android phones and custom ROMs  (Read 1749 times)

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HTC Android phones and custom ROMs
« on: October 20, 2014, 01:15:04 PM »
Oh god, stay away from that crap. I've wasted 2 full days at work trying to get a custom ROM on a HTC Evo 3D and I was unsuccessful. I would have been fine with just a stock ROM of Android 2.3, but nooooooo, HTC have to be dicks about it.

HTC devices have a custom bootloader that is nasty. There are two versions: 1.50 and everything before. In order to be able to install ROMs other than stock ones, you have to switch the bootloader from "S-ON" to "S-OFF". On pre-1.50 this was possible with a special tool, but on 1.53 this is only possible if do something called the "wire trick".

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It goes without saying that I will not do that.

The other option was a stock ROM of Android 2.3, but that can only be done if their bootloader is downgraded to pre-15.0. And that involves corrupting the bootloader by cutting the power while it's flashing (and therefore COMPLETELY bricking the device), running Linux and from there recovering the bootloader by installing the older version (since the bootloader is obviously corrupted). No freaking way I am going to do shit like this on company-owned property.

So, if you want a customizable device, stay away from HTC.
« Last Edit: October 20, 2014, 01:16:41 PM by Blizzard »
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Offline G_G

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Re: HTC Android phones and custom ROMs
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2014, 03:47:36 PM »
Have you seen this?
http://www.htcdev.com/bootloader

Or is that what you already tried.

I had to do something similar with my Xperia Play. Had to use a paper clip on two connecting points so the bootloader would become vulnerable and was able to be unlocked. And I've been going through the same shit with my Galaxy S4 and Samsung's Knox security. The bootloader is pretty much on the lockdown. There was an exploit for the first batch of S4's produced, but was fixed in a later batch and I was unlucky. So I'm stuck running stock based ROMs.


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Re: HTC Android phones and custom ROMs
« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2014, 04:40:40 PM »
Have you seen this?
http://www.htcdev.com/bootloader

Yes, of course. This is the very first thing you have to do if you want to install a custom ROM or even run a custom recovery. Even though I think it's really cool of them to offer support to developers and modders in such a way, I still couldn't flash a Gingerbread ROM, because of the bootloader. :/

I had to do something similar with my Xperia Play. Had to use a paper clip on two connecting points so the bootloader would become vulnerable and was able to be unlocked.

Yes, this is very similar to the wire trick. I didn't have any problems like this with my Xperia ZL though.

And I've been going through the same shit with my Galaxy S4 and Samsung's Knox security. The bootloader is pretty much on the lockdown. There was an exploit for the first batch of S4's produced, but was fixed in a later batch and I was unlucky. So I'm stuck running stock based ROMs.

Really? I had no idea. I guess Samsung upped their game since my old Galaxy S2 was easy to mode as well.
« Last Edit: October 20, 2014, 04:41:51 PM by Blizzard »
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Re: HTC Android phones and custom ROMs
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2014, 04:57:57 PM »
The wire trick is actually quite easy, I did attempt it on mine, after feeling the same way you do before that.

During my time messing with my Evo, I did end up bricking it pretty hard. It took me a couple hours and a lot of work with ADB and Fastboot to get it working, since it would do absolutely nothing, not even get to the boot screen, nor would Windows recognize it being plugged in, but I don't think you will ever totally brick it beyond repair.

That said, yes, HTC phones are terrible to unlock completely. Between getting the unlock code, the S-OFF, etc. it is a pain in the ass, but once you do, I absolutely love them.
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Re: HTC Android phones and custom ROMs
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2014, 05:12:40 PM »
The only reason I had issues with my Xperia Play was because of Verizon not wanting unlocked devices on their carrier. Sony finally said "fuck verizon" and let people unlock their bootloaders, but I had done mine hat hackish way before they made that decision. And that decision I believe is why Verizon hasn't sold an Xperia in forever.

And yeah, Samsung's Knox is a bitch. At least root can pretty much get rid of the knox that's built into the ROM but not the bootloader. Right now I'm running a stripped stock rom with no bloatware or knox and running something called Xposed. Think Cydia for Android with the freedom to install a shit load of tweaks. Might be something to look into.

The next phone I get I'm going to do some research and make sure I can unlock it before I buy it. Which is why I was looking at the HTC M8 but it sounds like it's a pain in the ass to deal with.

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Re: HTC Android phones and custom ROMs
« Reply #5 on: October 20, 2014, 06:40:32 PM »
@F0: I know it's easy. I've read like 5 tutorials on how to do it. It's just that I don't want to mess anything up since the phone's company property. :/
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Re: HTC Android phones and custom ROMs
« Reply #6 on: October 20, 2014, 06:55:53 PM »
@F0: I know it's easy. I've read like 5 tutorials on how to do it. It's just that I don't want to mess anything up since the phone's company property. :/

I mean that it's not as "dangerous" as it sounds, and the likelihood of actually bricking the device beyond repair or messing it up is not really an issue, as one might think based on what it sounds like.
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Re: HTC Android phones and custom ROMs
« Reply #7 on: October 20, 2014, 08:43:35 PM »
I know that, too, but I don't want to take the risk. xD We have a Galaxy Ace with Android 2.3. It just has very little internal memory for apps so it's almost unusable for us.
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Re: HTC Android phones and custom ROMs
« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2014, 08:54:03 PM »
I'm kinda sad to hear this. I've Always loved HTC phones the design just speaks to me. I'm planning on getting a HTC One M8 soon. It's a new phone so I want expecting to get custom roms on it right away and HTC stock is usually quite good. But it looks like I'll have to wait longer than I thought for them to get bootloader acess
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Re: HTC Android phones and custom ROMs
« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2014, 09:04:30 PM »
The whole point is that if you are not a n00b, there is no risk. Even if something somehow "goes wrong", which would be very rare, it can be easily undone and restored if you have a small clue what you are doing, which I believe everyone who has replied in this topic is more than capable of.
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