April 14, 2014 By: Jimmy McGee
You can now easily switch between Dalvik and ART if you’re experiencing ART-related bootloops! That and much more news is covered by Jordan, as he reviews all the important stories from this weekend. Included in this weekend’s news is the announcement that the Xperia Z2 X-Reality Image Enhancer has been ported to all Xperia Devices and the story about what to do now that you have a Samsung Galaxy S5! That’s not all that’s covered in today’s video!
Jordan talks about the exciting news coming out like the Nokia X camera being ported to Android 4.1+ devices and the announcement that Chainfire has re-released CF.lumen. Pull up a chair and check out this and other XDA Developer TV videos.
April 11, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
Well folks, today is Galaxy S5 day and Samsung’s “Next Big Thing” is officially here. And although certain South Korean carriers decided to jump the gun and sell the device a bit early, today marks the device’s official worldwide launch date.
So now that you’ve either gotten your grubby little paws on an S5 or you’re eagerly awaiting delivery from your friendly postal courier, you may be wondering what to do with the device. Well, since you’re reading this, there is absolutely no doubt that you’re going to want to root it and get started with a few (or several) mods. But with so many variants, it’s sometimes hard to find exactly what you need for exactly your model.
Let’s start with root access, as that’s what’s on everyone’s mind. If you may recall a few weeks back, we talked about how XDA Senior Recognized Developer Chainfire managed to root the SM-G900F International Qualcomm variant of the device ahead of release. Since then, Chainfire has been hard at work, bringing CF-Auto-Root to more variants of the device.
So which devices can be rooted today? Glad you asked:
Naturally, more are on the way, and Chainfire will continue to update this post once stock firmwares become available for other variants.
Once you’ve attained root access, you’re probably going to want to install a custom recovery. Thankfully, XDA Recognized Developer Phil3759 has a unified build of PhilZ Touch recovery (which is built on CWM Touch) available for all variants of the device. And so far, it is known to be compatible with the Canadian, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon, and International variants of the device. From here, you can perform some essential tasks such as creating a Nandroid backup, and installing custom ROMs and kernels once they become available.
You’re also probably going to want to backup that EFS partition. Luckily, XDA Recognized Contributor ricky310711 created an EFS backup and restore app that should be compatible with the A, F, H, and T variants of the device.
Finally, and this should be a given, you should bookmark your device’s appropriate home forum. For the vast majority of versions of the device, that is the International Samsung Galaxy S5 forum. But if you’ve got one of the US carrier variants of the device, make your way over to the AT&T Galaxy S5, T-Mobile Galaxy S5, Verizon Galaxy S5, and Sprint Galaxy S5 forums.
Are you the proud owner of a brand new Galaxy S5? If so, feel free to gloat in the comments below, and don’t forget to let us know about your journeys in r00t!
April 10, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
Way back in 2011, we talked about the interesting Chainfire3D plugin CF.lumen. For those of you who don’t remember, the plugin intelligently modified the color temperature of your device’s display based on the time of day and relative solar position. In other words, a customizable color filter would be added after sundown in the hopes of reducing eyestrain.
Unfortunately, however, the old CF.lumen plugin only worked with devices running Android 2.x. Now let’s fast forward to today, as XDA Senior Recognized Developer Chainfire‘s has brought CF.lumen back from the dead. Today’s new version of CF.lumen comes in at version 2.0, and it brings support for rooted devices running KitKat onwards. And rather than working as a plugin for Chainfire3D, CF.lumen v2 is its own independent application.
CF.lumen v2 functions in much the same way as the old plugin, as it allows you to set color filters to match the time of day. There are three conditions available (day, sundown, sleep), and each can be customized to your own liking. In addition, this version brings a colorblindness mode, which may help those with difficulty distinguishing between certain shades of colors.
March 27, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
The Samsung Galaxy S 5 isn’t even officially available yet, but that hasn’t stopped development for the device. Earlier, we talked about how a system dump appeared, enabling users to begin work porting Samsung’s latest proprietary applications to older devices.
Now, the International SM-G900F variant of the device has been rooted, courtesy of none other than XDA Senior Recognized Developer Chainfire. Root comes in the form of Chainfire’s popular CF-Auto-Root, which is essentially the easiest entry point to root access for those looking to stay close to stock firmware.
Using CF-Auto-Root is easy. Simply flash the CF-Auto-Root package as “PDA” in ODIN while your phone is in download mode, and CF-Auto-Root will do the rest. This pacakge will install the SuperSU binary and APK, as well as the stock recovery. However, it should be noted that this root method will increase your flash counter and trip your KNOX warranty flag.
If you’ve already got your hands on the SM-G900F or simply want to congratulate Chainfire on yet another device rooted ahead of release, head over to the original thread.
Device customization is a great thing, and one of the best places to begin is your home screen wallpaper. To that end, Android has allowed users to define custom wallpapers since its inception—something that took the competition quite a few tries to get right. However, sometimes it becomes tiresome manually changing your wallpaper to suit your mood.
We first talked about 500 Firepaper by XDA Senior Recognized Developer Chainfire back in November of last year. The legendary developer’s application keeps your home screens looking new and fresh with automatically updating wallpapers sourced from the photography site 500px.
Ever since 500 Firepaper’s release, it’s been continually updated with new features such as the ability to disable the parallax effect, an NSFW switch, a history browser, and more. And now in version 1.6, Chainfire has added another major feature: the ability to act as an image provider for Roman Nurik’s Muzei live wallpaper app thanks to Muzei’s open source content provider API. Thus by using 500 Firepaper 1.6 in conjunction with Muzei, you can now enjoy the benefits of both on the same device, and at the same time.
There are a few quirks to keep in mind when using 500 Firepaper as an image provider for Muzei, especially in portrait mode on certain devices. For example, using a Nexus 5 with the Google Experience Launcher in Portrait mode causes the default screen to view the left portion of a background image. Furthermore, images are only changed when you are viewing them. That said, these issues are hardly deal breakers for most users.
You can learn more about the changes and potential issues in version 1.60 by visiting Chainfire’s release notes on Google+. And if you’d like to jump in on the 500 Firepaper action and give the app a shot, head over to the application thread if you haven’t already.
January 20, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
There’s often much speculation surrounding what may be seen in upcoming and updated devices and new versions of Android. Most of this talk unfortunately centers around leaked images of some sort, rather than any hard evidence. Once in a while, however, genuine clues are discovered that help paint a picture of what’s to come.
A little over a week ago, a pair of commits were made to the AOSP master tree that essentially prevent SU from executing files stored on the /data partition. This is an issue because many (but not all) current root apps include files that are extracted to and executed from app-specific directories on this partition. As such, if these commits are not reverted, a large number of current root-enabled apps will need be updated in order to work with this new version of Android.
So if you’re an app developer responsible for creating root-enabled apps, how can you get around these changes? Well, XDA Senior Recognized Developer Chainfire has you covered with a few potential workarounds that were added to his How-To SU page. These workarounds include extracting the code and running it from RAM or rootfs, piping commands directly to SU, and so on.
Now, it’s important to keep in mind that these two commits may be reverted before the release of the next version of Android. Furthermore, if they are retained, it’s anybody’s guess as to the actual version number of this upcoming revision. That said, it’s obviously best to be safe rather than sorry so that you can save yourself and your users the hassle later.
Head over to Chainfire’s Google+ Post to learn more about the changes and what they could mean for the next version of Android. And if you’re developing a root-enabled app and you want to be sure that you are ready for these changes, be sure to check out Chainfire’s How-To SU Page.
[Many thanks to OEM Relations Manager jerdog for the tip!]
January 20, 2014 By: Jimmy McGee
The kernel files have been released for the Android 4.4 KitKat update on the Samsung Galaxy Note 3! That and much more news is covered by Jordan, as he reviews all the important stories from this weekend. Included in this week’s news is the announcement that the full Smart Social Camera Experience has been ported to Android 4.3 Xperia Devices and Mobile ODIN has been updated with more features and support for more devices!
Be sure to check out the the other videos released this last week on XDA Developer TV. XDA Developer TV Producer TK released an Xposed Tuesday video for Root Cloak, he then reviewed the Omate TrueSmart smartwatch 2.0, and finally he gave us an Android App Review of Calendar Status. Pull up a chair and check out this video.
January 17, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
We first featured XDA Senior Recognized Developer Chainfire‘s Mobile ODIN app a little over two years ago. Ever since the beginning, Mobile ODIN has allowed users to flash ODIN-flashable firmwares directly from the device itself, without the need to connect to a full computer.
Over the course of the app’s various updates, Mobile ODIN has evolved considerably—both adding support for new devices, as well as gaining new abilities. Now with an update to version 4, the app has gained even more abilities, as well as compatibility with a few more devices.
The most notable feature new to version 4 relates to its ability to modem images. As these partitions are protected, flashing may be temperamental on certain devices. To protect against this, new code was added to detect the protection, and if enabled, skip flashing the affected partition. That said, it’s still possible to flash complete firmwares and modems via Mobile ODIN. Just now, it takes a safer approach by checking for protections that could cause issues.
Another new feature unique to version 4 is its ability to automatically reboot your phone into download mode following a Mobile ODIN flash. This is useful in case you wish to flash bootloaders, trustzone, and other partitions that are not flashed via Mobile ODIN. Using this, you can flash an Android update while preserving root thanks to EverRoot, automatically boot to download, and flash the specific partitions that were skipped.
The built-in version of SuperSU was updated to 1.89, which was created to support the latest Samsung Android 4.4 firmwares. And finally, this update brings support for various variants of the Galaxy S 4 and Galaxy Note 3.
January 13, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for quite some time, you’re undoubtedly aware that many modern Samsung devices keep an internal flash counter that keeps track of how many times you flash custom firmware onto your device. Luckily, a fix for this has been available for quite some time thanks to Senior Recognized Developer Chainfire‘s fantastic TriangleAway app. But ever since its release, it’s been a bit of a cat and mouse game where a TriangleAway version would be released, followed by a new firmware update that blocks the app’s functionality.
Now, the next chapter in never-ending war between the community and the OEMs is here, as Chainfire has updated his TriangleAway app to version 3.25. The new version brings support for the Qualcomm-powered Galaxy Note 3 (must be running the now official Android 4.4.2 firmware), as well as for the leaked Android 4.4.2 firmware for the Qualcomm-powered Galaxy S 4.
It is important to keep in mind that TriangleAway’s purpose is only to reset the flash counter. It is not able to reset your KNOX Warranty void status at this time. Furthermore, the Galaxy Note 3 is only supported on Android 4.4. While the OTA has only occurred for certain unlocked variants of the device, it is highly likely that this will also work on carrier-branded versions once they receive their updates.
December 8, 2013 By: Will Verduzco
Not everyone has supremely fast mobile data when on the go. And even those with many bars of LTE reception shouldn’t have to waste their bandwidth downloading overly sized ROM updates. But let’s face it: We all want the absolute bleeding edge ROM and featureset at all times.
So what do we do when we’re on the go and happen to see that our favorite developer issued a new version? We download a huge, often 100 MB or larger complete update.zip via mobile data and flash it on the go. This is a given, as we wouldn’t be very good ORDers otherwise. Unfortunately, stuff happens, and not every download goes as expected. When a download arrives corrupted, that becomes bandwidth and time that is wasted—frustrating all around.
Well, thanks to work by XDA Senior Recognized Developer Chainfire, this is no longer an issue—at least not for those running OmniROM. Thanks to Chainfire’s work, OmniROM now uses Chainfire’s OpenDelta OTA technology. As its name suggests, this uses deltas, when possible, to reduce download sizes. Differences are determined using existing VCDIFF technology, and the delta files are then pushed out to the OmniROM public download server.
Then, a local Android client checks in with the update server and retrieves the latest .delta file. And one neat trick is that if you forget to update for a few rounds, OpenDelta can chain multiple .delta files to install many incremental updates at once. Finally, the Android app also allows you to automatically check for and download updates when connected to specified network types.
End users should be pretty excited about OpenDelta, as it means smaller and more streamlined update downloads. Developers should be as well. OpenDelta, as well as the whole OmniROM project is open source. Of note, however, users must be running TWRP recovery to use these incremental update deltas.
What are your thoughts on OmniROM’s new update system? Personally, I think it’s about time that a large-scale custom ROM incorporates an open source delta OTA system.
[Source: Official OmniROM Blog]
November 12, 2013 By: eagleeyetom
Modifying and tweaking the look of Android is one of the platform’s most amazing features. Users can change almost every element on their home screens, hence countless number of themes, wallpapers, and mods available in Android Themes and Apps and Games sub forums. All this great work from thousands of members is aimed to make Android look even more pleasing.
Not many of you folks know that XDA Elite Recognized Developer Chainfire, developer of many famous applications such as SuperSU or CF-Auto-Root, is a big fan of photography. He decided to merge his passions and create an application called 500 Firepaper. The app uses photos available on the 500px.com portal as your wallpaper And with this application, our home screen will never be boring again.
500 Firepaper has quite a few options available to set. You can choose which features and categories should be displayed. You can also customize the update interval. Chainfire also included a Daydream mode, which is similar to a desktop OS screensaver that can be displayed while docked or charging.
This app changes completely the look of the home screen, so it’s absolutely worth it to give 500 Firepaper a try. Take a visit to the application thread to get started.
November 6, 2013 By: Jimmy McGee
In this episode, XDA Developer TV Producer Jordan shows you how to root your Google Nexus 5. The Google Nexus 5 is hot news in the Android ecosystem. It is the first device released with Android 4.4 KitKat, and that is a good thing. But as usual at XDA, we must root all the things, and the Nexus 5 is no exception to that!
Jordan presents step-by-step instructions on how to gain root access and unlock the bootloader on your Nexus 5 using tools from the XDA Forums. First, Jordan shows you how to unlock the device. Then, he gain root access using XDA Elite Recognized Developer Chainfire‘s CF-Auto-Root. If you wanted to root your brand new Google Nexus 5, take a moment and check this video out.
November 1, 2013 By: Will Verduzco
We all knew that the Google Nexus 5 would be rooted as soon as users and developers started getting their hands on the device. And now, that time has come. XDA Elite Recognized Developer Chainfire recently received his unit, and we can all guess what happened next. So if you’re lucky enough to already have your own, or even if yours is simply on the way, good things are in store for you.
In addition to simply rooting the device, Chainfire released CF-Auto-Root. As stated by Chainfire himself, CF-Auto-Root can be thought of as “root for rooting beginners,” as well as those who want to stay as close to stock as possible while enjoying the sweet, root-enabled goods.
CF-Auto-Root for the Nexus 5 supports Windows, Linux, and Mac, and turns the whole rooting process into an incredibly simple process. All you have to do is download the zip from the thread and extract it, boot your device into fastboot (power off, then VolUp+VolDown+Power), connect via USB, run a command on your host computer, and follow the on-screen prompts on your device and PC.
Make your way over to the original thread to get started!