Every Android phone has a bootloader that instructs the operating system kernel to boot normally. But you need to understand one thing here that as Android OS is an open source OS and is available on a variety of different hardware, every manufacturer has their own version of bootloader specific for the hardware present in it’s environment. In literal terms, bootloader is code that is executed before any Operating System starts to run. The concept of bootloaders is universal to virtually all Operating systems that inculcates operating systems on your PC, laptop, smartphones, and other such devices.
Why is Bootloader Locked??
A bootloader is usually locked on an Android device because although it’s an open source OS, still the manufacturers want you to stick to their Android OS version specifically designed for the device. In order to apply this concept, manufacturers lock the bootloader. With a locked bootloader on Android devices, it is virtually impossible to flash a Custom ROM and forced attempts void warranty as well as usually end up in bricks. Therefore, the first step is to always unlock the bootloader. A lot has been said about bootloaders being “locked” and even the developer-friendly Nexus devices shipped with a locked bootloader (Nexus devices and a couple tablets are easily unlocked with a single command).In fact, a lot bootloaders are locked and encrypted, meaning simple commands like “fastboot oem unlock”, won’t do a thing.
Why To Unlock Bootloader On Android Devices??
The explanation to this question is really simple. If you want root, you’d be wanting to flash Custom ROM post-root, and if you want to install a Custom ROM, you’d need to have your stock bootloader unlocked. In simple terms Unlocking the bootloader allows you to install custom Firmware on your Android phone.
Warning: Unlocking your phone’s bootloader voids its warranty. It also completely wipes (formats) your Android phone’s internal memory including applications, contacts, SMS and MMS messages etc.
Half the charm of an Android phone lies in the root-based apps, beautiful mods and patches, and custom ROMs. If you have not rooted your phone yet, believe me you are not getting the most out of it. Rooting offers many advantages indeed but, at the same time it is also a little risky as it breaks into the wall of security build by the operating system.
According to a survey, 80% of Android phone users live happy with an unrooted device and the reasons for this are various- some people think of it as a sort of criminal activity, some are afraid of losing warranty, some are afraid of bricking their phone, while most people do not even know about the existence of a term like “rooting”.
ROOTING is one of the most loved and equally disdained terms in the world of Android. Android phone users can generally be divided into three sects on the basis of their opinion towards rooting stuff. First of all, there are those who are willing to unlock and root their phones as soon as they get it or update it with a stock firmware. Then there are larger class that are happy with keeping their phones in a state they bought it and keep miles away from rooting. Finally, there is a moderate group that keeps wondering- “To root or not to root!”
What is Rooting??
The term “root” comes from the Unix/Linux world and is used to describe a user who has “superuser” rights or permissions to all the files and programs in the software OS. Thus rooting is a kind of hacking procedure where you seek to obtain access to the hidden system files. It’s like seeing a tree with its roots that remain immersed in the earth. By rooting your Android phone, you can have capability to modify and change the internal files of your device which otherwise remain locked and hidden.
Why Not to Root Your Phone??
Rooting Voids the Warranty:
It may be that you skip all other harms associated with rooting, but one thing you cannot escape is that it will surely void the warranty of your phone as soon as you root it. Suppose you have rooted your device which is still under warranty period. One day it stops working suddenly or shows signs that demand repairing. In that case you will not be entitled to claim the warranty because it is void due to installing a modified kernel. However, there are methods that can uproot your device and you can reclaim the warranty.
Rooting Can Brick your Device:
Another solid reason for not attempting to root your device is the potential risk of “bricking” it. There are thousand of tech blog over the web that are full of rooting tutorial for almost every Android phone and tablet. I have known some people who, searching for a rooting tutorial for their device, stumbled upon a tutorial written by some raw-hand person and bricked or almost made it unusable. Moreover, in most cases it is the fault of the device owners, who being a raw-hand themselves, do not follow the procedure to the letter or carefully and turn their phone into a costly paper-weight.
Rooting Does not Let You Get Official Updates:
As soon as you root your Android phone, you will not be able to receive the Over-the-Air updates released by the manufacturer. It is another thing that you install the updates manually if you find the OTA update zip file.
Rooting might Threaten the Security:
Most of us store vital and private data such as passwords and credit card details on our smartphones and this has necessitated a greater need for security than ever before. According to a recent survey, one-third of Android apps contain a certain level of malware as they require our personal data to run. There are so many keyboard app apps, for instance, that store a database of everything you type on your Android phone- whether it be a common word or a password and login details. You are open to such risks even without rooting your Android device. The open nature of the Android OS is the reason why android users are more prone to these attacks.
Here are a few simple tips that might help you make your phone’s data more secure:
Install a Mobile Security/Antivirus App- The best ways to get started is to download and install a complete android Mobile Security App to protect your android smartphone or tablet. These security apps are specifically designed for mobile platform and offer browser protection and safety against potentially dangerous sites.
Granting Permissions to Apps Carefully- You should be a bit more aware when you are installing all those cool new apps and do read and grant permission to data that you are only comfortable sharing. If you are not happy with any of the “requests for permission”and feel it is information you rather not share, then discontinue using the app.
Avoid Installing Apps from Unknown Sources- While we do not say that you take a complete blanket approach towards apps from unknown sources and disallow them completely, if you want to install one, be absolutely sure that they are completely safe. Remember that no system or set of guidelines are ‘absolutely safe’, but reducing risks helps a great deal.
Advantages of Rooting:
Most Android enthusiasts or advanced users believe that it is impossible to make the most of and Android smartphone without rooting and installing a custom recovery on it. While keeping you Android device gives you a feeling of safety and insurance, rooting denotes to a state of freedom, adventure and wilderness. No doubt it involves risk, but it has big rewards too. Let’s consider them too. I see many people asking,”I have rooted my phone, now what?” Here are a few reasons why one should root one’s Android phone/tablet.
1. Truly own your device
2. Unlock hidden features and install incompatible apps
3. Boosts your phone speed and battery life
4. Uninstall pre-installed apps
5. Block ads in any app
6. Flash a custom Rom/Kernel
7. Enter into dark word of Android
8. Move all apps to SD card
9. Link SD card with internal memory
10. Choose Startup and background apps
11. Quick optimization and clean up
12. Get root explorer and terminal emulator
13. Fully customize your OS in your own way
14. Directly install apps to SD
15. Be able to use roundr, GMD, ROM toolbox
16. Get font installer and boot animations for better fonts
17. More internal storage
Rooting Opens a World of Possibilities:
There are many people who opt to root their device only to be able to install certain apps that need root privileges. Among these apps, there include some life-savers like Titanium Backup, Apps2SD, Root Explorer, Triangle Away, Juice Defender, ROM Manager, and so on. Thus on you rooted Android phone or tablet, you can backup your Apps and Games, move the apps to the external SD card, extend battery backup, unlock your SIM-locked phone and what not.
Ability to Install Custom ROM and Mods:
Another major, or probably the greatest, advantage of rooting your Android device is that it open the world of customization for you. Having in full control of your phone by rooting it, you can do what those with non-rooted device can only dream of. You may have heard of people installing custom ROMs on their devices. There are many great custom ROM’s available that can make your Android device look and perform drastically different.
Why a custom ROM is so important for many people has many reasons. You rooted phone with a good custom ROM installed on it can perform better, faster and smoother. There are many custom kernels that give you great battery-life. The stock Android ROM does not support theming, but there are great custom ROMs like the CyanogenMod and MIUI ROM that have great theming capabilities that add to the freshness of your phone.
The option of changing ROM does not let you get bored of the same look and feel of your Android device. Most Android phones see a single firmware upgrade from the manufacturer. If you buy an Android device with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, it will only see an upgrade to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Thanks to our ROM developers who bring the highest version of Android OS to the lowest-priced phones. It is only the magic of custom ROMs that we see a Galaxy Ace or Optimus One user enjoying Jelly Bean.
Best Apps For Rooted Users:
I have been using mobile phone’s since the days when it used be bulky like a walkie and had an antenna on the top. Just go back a few years ago and compare the phones of the day to the smartphones that we own today, and you’ll realize that their evolution has been fantastic. I have also been lucky enough to experience all major platforms, from java-based devices down to Symbian, Android and the newer Windows Phone too. I first, first came to know about Android during the days when the smartphone world was ruled by Nokia-made Symbian devices. For many, Android was just a thing of curiosity then.
Having got bored of Symbian, it was much later that I decided to switch to Android and bought my first device the Galaxy S. the new OS was attractive but after a few months, I was still unable to figure out why it was so popular. The difference between my old and new OS’s seemed marginal. Having spent about 4 months with my first Android phone in its virgin state, I came to know about a new thing called “rooting” that sounded to me synonymous to “bricking” my phone.
Anyway, I finally took that bold step with bouncing heart and only after after that adventure, I was able to get a deeper peep into Android. I believe that anyone reading these lines would not deny that it is impossible to enjoy Android to its full without rooting it. Voiding one’s phone’s warranty might sound a good idea to all, but rooting pays for it pretty well. Now, I own Moto E and within a month of its purchase, I rooted it ! If you wish to enrich your experience with your phone or tablet, rooting is the only way to achieve the ultimate performance and customization whether it be getting speedy response, better battery, enhanced features, tweak system or make visual changes.
Today, we’ll see some really good, and also popular, apps that can help you get most out of your Android device. As the very title of the present article makes it evident, all these apps require root access to function. And therefore, you must have a rooted device before you can use them.
So, here begins our list of some of the best apps for rooted Android phones and tablet devices:
The bigger the screen, the better the fun, isn’t it? We all like a smartphone or tablet with a big screen that show everything with minutest detail and vivid colors. In most cases, OEM’s use battery according to the screen size of a device. Then why it is that the bigger the screen, the least the battery runs? You’ll hardly find a guy who is happy with the battery performance. In a situation where we cannot extend the capacity of the battery of our device, it’s wise to manage the battery power to get better performance out of it. Battery drain is the biggest concern of any smartphone user but if you have root, you can enjoy better performance using a 3rd-party power-save app. While you can find hundreds of battery-saver apps at the Play Store, there are just a few that really possess the magic wand. And among such apps, JuiceDefender Ultimate is probably the king of all. It is a mighty power manager app packed with advanced functions that controls, checks and manages all features and resources that devour the battery juice of your device. The app employs a bunch of effective measures to give you the best possible battery backup, and it does so by intelligently managing the channels that suck the battery most. It features highly customizable options to curb battery drain and get it up to your expectations.
Root access on an Android device gives you the license to do almost anything and when it comes to personalization of your device, modifying the available features and adding new things to it, Xposed Framework is an ultimate tool. It is a custom framework that replaces the default framework of your devices and adds the ability to be modified via compatible modules. The presence on Xposed framework and its modules ensure that you get the power to control the visual elements on your device in your hands. You can customize things like the statusbar items, notification panels, extend reboot menu options, enable call recording, manage connectivity features, install third-party icon packs on stock launcher and thousands of such tasks very easily without having the knowledge of editing system apps and XML codes.
Extending our list of best apps for rooted devices, I’m now going to talk about an app that hardly requires any introduction if you not a novice with Android. Tasker for Android is a must have app if you are an advanced or power user, but it offers much even if you are new to it. It is a kind of personal genie that is capable of granting your daily mobile wishes. Tasker is a task control and automation tool that, if used wisely, can multiply your mobile experience many times. The app has lots of advanced features that let you
program your devices by adding tasks to make your device do things according to the rules defined by you. It lets you determine the behavior of apps and features as you might wish them to behave, whether it be to assign a task based on sensors, schedule app automation, control data and network connectivity and so on. It can do almost anything you can imagine. If you are a hardcore Android user, Tasker might prove a
dream app for you.
ROM ToolBox Pro:
ROM ToolBox Pro is a perfect example that shows the immense possibilities offered by root access on Android. As its very name proclaims, it is not just a tool for rooted Android devices, but a collection of various advanced useful tools with plethora of options for customizing the performance and user interface of your phone or tablet. Here is a list of the major tools that Root ToolBox Pro combines:
Root file browser
Boot animation changer
Reboot manager, and lots more ! !
On expanding each of the listed tools, you’ll get more options related to specific tools.
Any app that has so much to give you at the price of one is definitely good !
While apps like JuiceDefender Ultimate and ROM ToolBox Pro aim at giving you better battery life and enhanced performance on your Android device respectively, Greenify targets both ends at the same time. Greenify lets you select apps that remain active and run as background processes even when they are not actively running. Now, such apps not only eat your phone’s ROM, making it slow and laggy, but also keep draining the precious battery juice continuously. If you are one who is fond of installing a lot of apps, Greenify can save you from being worried about performance and battery life. It lets you identify rogue apps and allows you put them in hibernation mode so that they do not keep eating CPU and RAM resources and leeching battery power. The app is pretty easy to use. Simply add the applications you want to hibernate when they move to the background, and let Greenify do its spell.
Good battery life, awesome performance and cool customization— we have seen one or more apps for these things. Now let’s see another must have and one of the most rated apps for rooted Android devices. If you got root privileges on your device, Titanium Backup is a highly recommended app for you. You might find a number of backup apps at the Google Play Store, but none of them does the job so perfectly and nicely. The only negative thing about the app is it user interface that feels outdated, but when it comes to functionality, Titanium Backup surpasses them all.This best in class app can backup all apps (including system apps) and games on your apps with all app settings and data. You can backup apps individually, in groups or all at once. Also, before backing up or restoring the apps, you can choose whether to do the operation just with the apps, settings and data or a combination of all three. Besides, it also lets you schedule your backups. If you purchase the Pro key, you will also be able to use some premium features like—
Data migration (important for those who are fond of switching ROMs)
Dropbox sync and restore
Multiple backups per app support
Zero-tap batch restore
App freezer for keeping an app unchanged
Backup apps without closing any app
As the name suggests, No Bloat allows you to remove all the bloat from your Android device. For rooted users, the app should come in handy to remove all the useless apps and bloat that carriers or OEMs ship in their phone right out of the box, and free up some resources that should improve performance and battery life,
No Bloat is pretty simple to use, and even has an handy option to backup the APKs before deleting them, in case things go wrong.
The only purpose of RoundR is to make the edges of your screen rounded, instead of flat, like in iOS. While this may seem like a very minor change, it somehow ends up making a very noticeable difference in day-to-day usage.
It is very tough to explain how rounded corners can affect the UI so much, but in the end it does. RoundR is one of those apps that you must try to know the difference. The app can be downloaded for free from the Play Store.
GMD Gesture Control:
GMD Gesture Control is particularly useful for Android tablet owners. Using this app, users can assign certain gestures to perform certain tasks. For example, you can setup a four finger swipe across the screen to automatically take you to the previous app you were using as in the iPad. You can easily emulate all the gestures that the iPad has using GMD Gesture Control.
Even Note and other Phablet owners can use GMD Gesture Control for navigation purposes. Instead of hitting the back button, they can assign a gesture which they can draw on the screen to imitate the back button.
Rom manager is one great app for all you enthusiasts who want to flash new ROMs and taste new versions of android in your smartphones.This app gives you a list of all the famous ROMs available for your device.You can also download them through this app and this also saves you a lot of time searching for it on the net.The pro version of this app is worth a try.
Bored out of the normal looks of your navigation buttons? Wanna add some colours to your screen? Go try this app.This app can personalize your navigation buttons(soft keys) into a lot many styles.It has 150+ themes to choose from.This is an awesome app for those who want your smartphone to be just like you want it to be...
This is the best file manager out there.The basic idea of this explorer is just awesome.This app provides you two panels when positioned in the landscape view.You can simply copy-paste any file or move any file from one panel to the other without the fuzz of remembering the path of the locations separately.It also has additional features like FTP connection,etc... This is a must have app for all the android users.
NOTE:You also need to install solid explorer unlocker to use the complete features.
At the moment it has some glitches working in android kitkat.
This app comes with hundreds of custom fonts ready for you to install. Use any custom fonts just by saving it into your device and install it from your device storage.
It is one of the best app you should have after rooting your phone. This app links all the files and folders to your external SD card, hence virtually increasing internal memory.
Android devices come with Google’s recovery environment, which is often referred to as the “stock recovery.” You can boot to the recovery system by pressing device-specific buttons as your phone or tablet boots or by issuing an adb command that boots your device to recovery mode. The recovery menu provides options to help recover your device — for example, you can reset your device to its factory default state from here. The recovery mode can also be used to flash OTA update files. if you want to flash a new ROM to your device — or re-flash the factory default ROM file — you’ll need to boot to recovery mode first.
The stock recovery is a minimal, limited system. It’s designed to be ignored, and it can generally only flash OTA updates and ROMs provided by the device’s manufacturer, not third-party ROMs.
A custom recovery is a third-party recovery environment. Flashing this recovery environment onto your device replaces the default, stock recovery environment with a third-party, customized recovery environment. This is a bit like flashing a custom ROM like CyanogenMod — but, instead of replacing your device’s Android operating system, it replaces the recovery environment.
A custom recovery environment will do the same things as the stock Android recovery. However, it will also have additional features. Custom recoveries often have the ability to create and restore device backups. Custom recoveries allow you to install custom ROMs. ClockworkMod even offers a “ROM Manager” app that allows you to access many of these features from a running Android system — this app requires a custom recovery installed to function.
Popular Custom Recovery:
The Android Recovery which comes installed on any device has several issues, so that’s exactly why we finally consider that a custom recovery could be a much better choice as long as it find a way to reset your device when it may be impossible to boot into it.
Clockworkmod is available for quite a while and it has managed to win the title of the most popular stock recovery replacement thanks to all its features. But another player had also entered the game being known as TeamWin Recovery Project (or simply TWRP) and we bet that you are curious about it as well ! !
This fully touch-based custom recovery was initially dedicated exclusively to Nexus devices, but things have changed and now it is available for a variety of other smartphone and tablet models too, in form of official or thirdparty builds.
But which of these apps should you choose? CWM Recovery wins over TWRP Recovery or not? Here we have a detailed analysis of the most important aspects of these two custom recoveries which will help you taking the best decision:
The Graphic User Interface:
ClockworkMod’s interface is completely different if we compare it to the interface of
TWRP. This one comes with larger buttons that make it even easier than before to spot the feature that you are looking for and select it with a simple tap. And don’t forget about the soft buttons for Home and Back here, or about the option to turn the display off after a certain amount of time. But this doesn’t necessary have to mean that the interface of TWRP is necessarily much better, but simply with some differences that can offer us a more comfortable and faster experience.
This is one of the most used features in a recovery, but we must admit that we cannot actually compare CWM Recovery with TWRP Recovery at this chapter. They both work flawless when it comes to installing zip files, but some of you might consider that is easier to locate the zip file you want to install it in TWRP Recovery; and the built file manager is the one that makes the difference.
Backing Up option:
If you select the backup option in ClockworkMod, the backing up procedure starts immediately for all the partitions, while TWRP proves to be ideal as long as it allows you to backup only one partition. To be more specific, it presents you several options that you can choose from, giving you the possibility to control exactly which partition you want to backup or in which storage you want this backup to take place. So here, we can definitely say that TeamWin Recovery Project can successfully replace ClockworkMod.
This time, when it comes to restoring backups, ClockworkMod recovery comes with an advanced restore option which lets you restore just one partition, while TWRP recovery gives you the possibility to select as many partitions as you might want. Even more, partitioning the SD card in ClockworkMod is by default set to ext3 file system and you have no chance to change it. TWRP instead lets you change it to ext4. So, TWRP seems once again to have won the battle, but we must tell you that besides the interface or the backing up and restoring backups options, it actually provides the same features as ClockworkMod. But ClockworkMod comes with one click installation (via Clockworkmod’s own ROM Manager app), while TWRP can be installed with some adb commands, so this aspect comes in favor of ClockworkMod recovery.
Check the next thread for more info
Review the Risks ! !
Customize your Android
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