December 17, 2012 By: Joseph Hindy
Root exploits are often quite a good thing. There are many that only work on certain individual devices. However, there are some that work on a whole bunch of devices. An example of the latter is a root exploit by XDA Recognized Developer Bin4ry that works on a variety of devices. And now we have news of a dangerous, new exploit that works on Exynos 4210- and 4412-based devices.
XDA Forum Member alephzain released the exploit that affects pretty much any device with an Exynos 4412 or 4210 processor. This includes the Samsung Galaxy Note II, Samsung Galaxy S III, Meizu MX, and the Galaxy S II, among many others. Here’s how alephzain explains the root method:
Recently discover a way to obtain root on S3 without ODIN flashing.
The security hole is in kernel, exactly with the device /dev/exynos-mem.
This device is R/W by all users and give access to all physical memory … what’s wrong with Samsung ?
Its like /dev/mem but for all.
Three libraries seems to use /dev/exynos-mem:
Essentially, this exploit can be used to root any device with the aforementioned processors. What’s more, this method wouldn’t require an Odin flash like most current root methods. However, this exploit could be dangerous. Not only could be used to acquire root access, but for malicious applications as well. So developers will have a fun time helping to fix the issues while using the exploit for root.
For more details, check out the original thread. Do keep in mind, though, that this is posted in the new Samsung Galaxy Note II developer-only forum, so don’t post saying thanks or anything as the thread will be used for developers to develop things only.
October 29, 2012 By: Will Verduzco
We recently gave three devices a home in our forum. Not too long ago, we created a forum for the international Galaxy Note II. Now, it’s time for the US variants. Coming in as the successor to the wildly popular first generation Note, the Note II builds on its predecessor by increasing the screen size and processor speed, while decreasing device thickness slightly to 9.4 mm. Packing a powerful 1.6 GHz quad-core Exynos 4412 processor, the Note II is certainly no slouch. The fast processor is coupled with 2 GB of RAM, and either 16, 32, or 64 GB of internal storage. The device ships with a modified version of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, and features extensive Wacom active stylus functionality.
Next up is the Motorola Droid RAZR HD. The device comes in as the flagship device for the late 2012 Droid RAZR line. Serving as the big brother to the recently added Droid RAZR M, the RAZR HD offers a larger and higher resolution 4.7″ 720p Super AMOLED panel and a larger 2530 mAh battery. The rest of the specs, including the 1.5 GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 and internal memory, remain unchanged compared with the M. All of this is wrapped up in an 8.4 mm, splash-resistant casing.
Finally, we have the Meizu MX. The MX is quite the interesting device. While it features category-leading specifications, many in the western world have never been exposed to the device. Earlier this year, we had our own XDA TV Admin Jimmy McGee gave the device a closer look. Now that kernel source code has been released, we have decided to give it a place here as well. Featuring either a dual-core Exynos 4210 or a quad-core Exynos 4412 (both clocked at 1.4 GHz), its specs trade blows with the flagships of 2011 and 2012. In fact, the processors used are shared with the Samsung own flagships, the Galaxy S II and III. In addition to a fast processor, the device features a 4.0″ 960×640 ASV display, 1 GB RAM, 16 GB ROM, an 8 MP camera, and a 1600 or 1700 mAh battery (depending on model).
Want in on the action or simply want to discuss these exciting devices? Head over to the newly created forums!
The story of the Meizu MX is an interesting one. Meizu Technology is a Chinese electronics manufacturer, producing a range of products from music players to, now, smartphones. There currently is no official American or European release date for the Meizu MX. Rather, it has been released only in Hong Kong and China. However, we got our hands on one and we took it for a test drive.
There are two variants, the dual-core and the quad-core. The dual-core was released in China on February 1 of this year, and the quad-core came out June 30. However, to complicate things, both variants are called the MX. Though the Samsung Galaxy S III beat Meizu to market, the Meizu MX was the first smartphone based on the Exynos 4412 to be announced. In this review, we are examining the quad core variant.
The Meizu MX comes neatly packaged in a white box. When you enter the box, you have a neatly placed power adapter and a cardboard-backed book. As you turn through the book it talks about the MX’s features. Then you will find the MX at the end of the “book” like some sort of electronic prize.
Recently Portal Administrator Will Verduzco showed us how to root and install Ice Cream Sandwich on the dual-core Meizu MX. Meizu recently sent us their new quad-core version—the similarly named Meizu MX M032—and it sports the same Exynos 4412 chip found in the Samsung Galaxy S III. This time, we gave the device to our resident mobile deconstructionist.
In this episode of Unboxing the XDA Way, XDA Elite Recognized Developer AdamOutler unboxes the Meizu MX all the way down to the circuit board and makes it beg for mercy. Adam runs into a End User License Agreement talking about rooting the device, which he promptly ignores. Adam finds that the exploits that we used last time to gain root have been patched. In the vein of his video on rooting, Adam continues and finds a UART exploit to root the Meizu MX.
Here on XDA, we try and squeeze out every ounce of goodness from our device. Sometimes that requires that we have full access to the device. While we can respect device makers who protect the system kernel from inexperienced users, we here at XDA are not inexperienced users. We give our selves root access because we don’t see why we should be shut off from a section of our phone—a phone that we own. That would be like the municipal government putting up a fence in the part of your yard that has underground sewer lines. It’s my yard; I should be able to access every part of it.
Device manufactures that prevent root access would be similar to Microsoft not allowing you to have an Administrator account on your Windows PC. It’s like Ubuntu blocking you from having a root account on your PC. It’s like Apple only allowing you to install approved apps from their app store on your iPhone—What? Oh right, they do that.
Thanks to its international reach, XDA TV gets to try and experiment with some very interesting, and sometimes unheard of phones and devices. The dual-core version of the Meizu MX is really only available in China and parts of Europe. Though there is talk of their next quad-core phone coming stateside. Regardless of the Meizu MX’s stateside popularity, there has been some significant development. Some of that development has been covered by XDA Portal Administrator Will Verduzco in this article.
In today’s episode of XDA TV, Will teaches us how to root the Meizu MX and install Ice Cream Sandwich on the device. Will begins by installing Ice Cream Sandwich on the Meizu MX. He then takes us through the process of getting the Meizu MX rooted using tools from the XDA Developers Forums.
March 31, 2012 By: Will Verduzco
Not too many people around these parts are familiar with the name Meizu. Despite making highly popular flagship devices for the China and Hong Kong markets, they haven’t stirred up too much commotion in other parts of the world. This is unfortunate, however, as their flagship MX and upcoming quad-core MX pack some seriously high end hardware.
Normally their devices don a heavily skinned version of Android 2.3 Gingerbread dubbed “Flyme OS.” Luckily for power users, however, this ICS beta update comes in vanilla flavor instead. Going forward, Carl Pei of Meizu (XDA Forum Member caarl) informs me that Meizu plans on releasing joint updates—one with Flyme, one without—so users can choose which they would prefer. Now wouldn’t it be nice if HTC and Samsung could follow suit with Sense and TouchWiz by making them optional?
Official Release Statement:
MEIZU has today released a public beta testing version of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich for the MEIZU MX and M9. The newly released firmware will be based on stock Android 4.0 without any customizations.
The Ice Cream Sandwich upgrade brings an entirely new look and feel to Android on MEIZU MX and M9, with a redesigned user interface as well as new design and usage concepts.
Prior to the public beta testing, MEIZU launched a private beta testing program for Android 4.0, which began mid-February for the MEIZU M9. During the private beta, users were amazed at the speed and responsiveness of the testing firmware. The newly released public beta firmware brings many bug fixes and also the support for MEIZU’s flagship device, the MX.
With the release of the public beta testing stock Android firmware, the company continues supporting the MEIZU M9, a device that has been on the market for more than a year. By doing so, MEIZU once again displays its focused commitment to the user experience and satisfaction of its many customers and fans.
The ICS beta firmware is available as of today for the MEIZU MX and M9.
Now that we have the ICS goods, it’s time to get cracking on ROM development. You can find more information, along with all the relevant download links, in the ROM thread. For those installing the goods, please note that Gmail is not included in the ROM, and for some reason cannot be installed from Google Play. Instead, use this version.