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[Q] Some Questions About Software Update

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MasterfulNinja
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Default [Q] Some Questions About Software Update

Hey everyone,

Just wanted to ask a quick question regarding the firmware

I got my UK unlocked S5 last week and as soon as I set it up, an update came through, which is 100mb, the note regarding say "Improved performance", the update download, but I haven't installed it yet. Mainly because of a bad experience I had after updating my S3. I haven't come across any bugs since I've been using it, and I'm concerned that if I update, the battery will drain quicker, or perhaps cause an error in the recovery mode(these things happened to my S3 after updating to 4.3). So 2 main questions.

1. Has anyone here downloaded this 100mb software update their S5? If so, what differences did you notice?

2. Suppose I updated and wasn't happy with the new changes? Would it be possible to go back to the original firmware version that my phone came with when I took it out of the box, *without rooting my S5?

Hope some people on here can shed some light on these questions.

Thank you in advance*
 
Goldie
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1. It's just a system update. The phone is new there are bound to be updates as issues are ironed out

2. You can odin any firmware whenever you want

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fffft
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Originally Posted by MasterfulNinja View Post
Has anyone here downloaded this 100mb software update their S5? If so, what differences did you notice?

Your instincts are dead on. Updates may fix bugs or add a desireable feature. But just as often they introduce new bugs, break root or disable root exploits, break a few apps and add noxious DRM frameworks like the Knox qfuse warranty bit. They can seriously mess up a custom ROM and may depreciate features like MSC or car dock that may be important to you personally.

Updates cannot always be reverted. Try downgrading your Kitkat baseband to Jellybean and see what happens. Or try removing the Knox security bit after you take the update that introduced it. I disable automatic updates and wait to hear what early adopters find before upgrading.

Unfortunately you didn't tell us the all important version of your update. Or even tell us what your current firmware version and carrier are. Your update might be similar to the recent ATT /Verizon OTA adding the mixed blessing of reactivation lock. That is causing bootloops for some people with custom kermels. 4.4.3 is mostly bug fixes, with a few UI tweaks. And I believe 4.4.4 took aim at closing yet another open-SSL exploit and reverting some of the new 4.4.3 bugs.

No matter what an update intends to do, a few new bugs and unexpected conflicts usually turn up. A quick Google finds reports like this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by International Business Times
Issues Spotted for the Android 4.4.3 Kitkat

The Android 4.4.3 Kitkat system update is pretty much all about improving performances, strengthening stability and fixing a couple of bugs. However, it reels in a couple of issues experienced by users of Nexus devices that have already been upgraded to the latest update.

According to IT Pro, some of these issues include wi-fi problems, crashes and reboots and bugs found in apps. Google has not yet given any statement about how to deal with these issues nor has there been any word if these issues are only experienced by a handful.
.

.
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MasterfulNinja
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Originally Posted by fffft View Post
Your instincts are dead on. Updates may fix bugs or add a desireable feature. But just as often they introduce new bugs, break root or disable root exploits, break a few apps and add noxious DRM frameworks like the Knox qfuse warranty bit. They can seriously mess up a custom ROM and may depreciate features like MSC or car dock that may be important to you personally.

Updates cannot always be reverted. Try downgrading your Kitkat baseband to Jellybean and see what happens. Or try removing the Knox security bit after you take the update that introduced it. I disable automatic updates and wait to hear what early adopters find before upgrading.

Unfortunately you didn't tell us the all important version of your update. Or even tell us what your current firmware version and carrier are. Your update might be similar to the recent ATT /Verizon OTA adding the mixed blessing of reactivation lock. That is causing bootloops for some people with custom kermels. 4.4.3 is mostly bug fixes, with a few UI tweaks. And I believe 4.4.4 took aim at closing yet another open-SSL exploit and reverting some of the new 4.4.3 bugs.

No matter what an update intends to do, a few new bugs and unexpected conflicts usually turn up. A quick Google finds reports like this:

.

.
Thank you very much for your detailed answers! That's exactly it! And I know from experience that updating firmware can cause a negative affect to the phone's performance. My iPhone 4S is still on iOS 5.1 but runs perfectly, while friends who updated their 4S to 7.1 experience freezes and heavy lag. Maybe companies do this deliberately, so people get frustrated and end up having to get the latest, more powerful model so the OS to run smoothly?

I do exactly the same, I always wait to see what people about an update before updating. The only difficulty with Android updates is that there seem to be so many different versions of updates. For example, when I researched the 100mb one for the S5,* various sites mentioned it, but others say the size of the update was 30mb, which were called "improved performance" I also heard about updates not always being able to be reverted to the previous version,* and also about Knox. So, you can see why I'm hesitant to update.

I know quite a bit about using Android, but have very limited knowledge regarding rooting and custom roms and so on. Also, after reading that rooting a phone incorrectly can turn it into a brick, I'm happy to just leave it as it is. I've attached a photo which shows my current firmware version, as well as other information. Also, as my S5 is unlocked, the only updates I'll receive will be from Samsung. I asked my carrier (T-Mobile UK) and that's what they told me. Only phones from bought from them include added apps that they put on, and I think they may also be able to tweak the updates received, by adding their own features.

Some more questions for you;

1. Do you recommend a factory reset after each software update?(I had to factory reset my S3 to stop the battery draining issue that 4.3 caused. But was wondering if it's best to factory reset after each and every update on Android devices)

2. I know you said that sometimes reverting back to a previous firmware isn't always possible, but can't using Odin with the correct firmware version work? Like Goldie mentioned in the above reply. And does changing the firmware via Odin require rooting the phone?
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gee2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MasterfulNinja View Post
Thank you very much for your detailed answers! That's exactly it! And I know from experience that updating firmware can cause a negative affect to the phone's performance. My iPhone 4S is still on iOS 5.1 but runs perfectly, while friends who updated their 4S to 7.1 experience freezes and heavy lag. Maybe companies do this deliberately, so people get frustrated and end up having to get the latest, more powerful model so the OS to run smoothly?

I do exactly the same, I always wait to see what people about an update before updating. The only difficulty with Android updates is that there seem to be so many different versions of updates. For example, when I researched the 100mb one for the S5,* various sites mentioned it, but others say the size of the update was 30mb, which were called "improved performance" I also heard about updates not always being able to be reverted to the previous version,* and also about Knox. So, you can see why I'm hesitant to update.

I know quite a bit about using Android, but have very limited knowledge regarding rooting and custom roms and so on. Also, after reading that rooting a phone incorrectly can turn it into a brick, I'm happy to just leave it as it is. I've attached a photo which shows my current firmware version, as well as other information. Also, as my S5 is unlocked, the only updates I'll receive will be from Samsung. I asked my carrier (T-Mobile UK) and that's what they told me. Only phones from bought from them include added apps that they put on, and I think they may also be able to tweak the updates received, by adding their own features.

Some more questions for you;

1. Do you recommend a factory reset after each software update?(I had to factory reset my S3 to stop the battery draining issue that 4.3 caused. But was wondering if it's best to factory reset after each and every update on Android devices)

2. I know you said that sometimes reverting back to a previous firmware isn't always possible, but can't using Odin with the correct firmware version work? Like Goldie mentioned in the above reply. And does changing the firmware via Odin require rooting the phone?
1. Yes, a data factory reset after a update/flash a rom is remmended and gives best performance and stability;
2. I haven`t tried flashing a older rom itself but it should be possible i guess as this is not dowgrading like from 4.4.2 to 4.3. You could try it and if it fails there`s no harm done as you can flash your current rom back.
3. Installing a update or flash a rom usualy will kill root, though superSU Pro offers a survival mode to keep root after a update. You can also flash a rom with Mobile Odin Pro and enable everroot and the 2 other options so you will not loose root.
USE Search: /this thread /all threads/Google before posting your question, you`re most likely not the first one having this issue
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fffft
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I don't automatically accept updates. Someone more impulsive, or indifferent can be the guinea pig. That approach is effective in avoiding some unpleasant firmware surprises. Often an older firmware version runs smoother and is more stable as in your IOS 5 vs 7 example. Running an older firmware means that you may have unpatched security vulnerabilities but in practice this usually isn't a great or unmanageable problem. It is a point to keep in mind though.

Rooting isn't nearly as dangerous as many people think it is. Someone who can follow directions and avoid flashing firmware from a completely different device will rarely brick a phone. And even if you did, you can usually recover from the mishap. I mention this because one of the best ways to maintain a stable phone OS is to install a decent custom ROM (which typically requires root). And then most of the heavy lifting is done by the developer who has already removed bloat, restrictions and other objectionable pieces. And monitors and releases tailored and usually stable updates for those using his ROM.

Android updates vary in size because they are screened by carriers, each deciding what update components and /or custom bits goes into their version of the update. More restrictive Apple manages all IOS updates centrally from their California servers i.e. they don't relinquish direct control to carriers. Still it isn't hard to find articles giving a good summary of what issues android firmware updates are addressing.

Some people believe that you should accept every update and as soon as it becomes available. I don't see a compelling need to update unless you are trying to resolve a current bug or are enticed by a specific new feature. I don't recommend a factory reset after each update. I do recommend that you clear the system cache from recovery mode though. A factory reset usually won't benefit you but it is time consuming to reinstall and reconfigure your phone.

Having said that, if you have a specific issue, such as the 4.3 battery drain then you have a rationale for doing so. But I have to say that I experienced the same S3 issue and clearing the cache was sufficient to stabilize the phone for me. Some phones will develop corruption or configuration conflicts over time, especially if you install a lot of apps. Or if you have a specific app that makes a mess of your file system. With that in mind, I do do a factory reset about once a year to clean up the phone, the same as I would do for a laptop OS. But I don't see a reason to do it after every update.

Odin is a Samsung product, complete with DRM. So no, you cannot flash anything with Odin. You can flash most stock firmware and in particular Odin will look for OEM signatures if you try to change the bootloader or modem. In the case of downgrading, it is the Knox qfuse on your phone that will cause the Odin flash to fail. If you try to downgrade you end up with a partial flash which can soft brick your phone and trip the Knox flag.

.
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