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[Q] Need some serious advice about roms! Been away for loooong

OP Jahrern

22nd April 2014, 05:49 PM   |  #1  
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So, i was here back when the phone came out, unlocked the bootloader and got a few Roms in the start, and ended up with Paranoid Android V2.54 i believe, and never really cared about looking for anything new since i thought it was pretty good, and i enjoy as close to stock as possible. But now my phone is getting really slow, and i need a change. And getting back onto the forums here im just really intimidated by the amount of Roms, the term S-OFF and Kernel. I generally know the basics i suppose, but when i was installing Roms back in the early days of the HTC one S it was as easy as getting the rom on the SD card an flashing it. Im probably coming off as a bit stupid here, but i dont wanna brick this phone just because i did one thing wrong.

So where im getting at is, what Rom should i go for? I just need something easy to install, and nothing super flashy. As said earlier, i enjoy the stock android, and i wouldnt mind getting the newer version of android aswell. So give me some pointers, and feel free to give me the details on how to flash it as i havent done this in a while
22nd April 2014, 10:42 PM   |  #2  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahrern

So, i was here back when the phone came out, unlocked the bootloader and got a few Roms in the start, and ended up with Paranoid Android V2.54 i believe, and never really cared about looking for anything new since i thought it was pretty good, and i enjoy as close to stock as possible. But now my phone is getting really slow, and i need a change. And getting back onto the forums here im just really intimidated by the amount of Roms, the term S-OFF and Kernel. I generally know the basics i suppose, but when i was installing Roms back in the early days of the HTC one S it was as easy as getting the rom on the SD card an flashing it. Im probably coming off as a bit stupid here, but i dont wanna brick this phone just because i did one thing wrong.

So where im getting at is, what Rom should i go for? I just need something easy to install, and nothing super flashy. As said earlier, i enjoy the stock android, and i wouldnt mind getting the newer version of android aswell. So give me some pointers, and feel free to give me the details on how to flash it as i havent done this in a while

First thing you should tell us some more info about your phone, just to know better what guides and adices we should give you:

1. Phone model: S4 or S3 (is it with dual core krait 1.5 Ghz or with older dual core 1.7 Ghz processor?)
2. What hboot/firmware do you have, what radio, are your bootloader locked or not (at HTC Dev site)...in fact we need all the info that you have on your bootloader screen (power off phone then keep pressed VOLUME DOWN while pressing POWER)
3. What recovery do you use (CWM or TWRP) and what version?
4. Finally but not least....WHAT DO YOU WANT? A Sense ROM, an AOSP ROM, do you want latest Android version (4.4.2 KitKat) or it doesn't matter to you...things like this. You said something about this but maybe give more details

Then we might have some guides for you and some advices and you could choose among them based on your pers preference
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22nd April 2014, 11:12 PM   |  #3  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rapier

First thing you should tell us some more info about your phone, just to know better what guides and adices we should give you:

1. Phone model: S4 or S3 (is it with dual core krait 1.5 Ghz or with older dual core 1.7 Ghz processor?)
2. What hboot/firmware do you have, what radio, are your bootloader locked or not (at HTC Dev site)...in fact we need all the info that you have on your bootloader screen (power off phone then keep pressed VOLUME DOWN while pressing POWER)
3. What recovery do you use (CWM or TWRP) and what version?
4. Finally but not least....WHAT DO YOU WANT? A Sense ROM, an AOSP ROM, do you want latest Android version (4.4.2 KitKat) or it doesn't matter to you...things like this. You said something about this but maybe give more details

Then we might have some guides for you and some advices and you could choose among them based on your pers preference

1. According to Quadrant i have a CPU Frequency of 1512MHz, so by definition that should make it a S4
2. For recovery, im almost 100 percent sure its SuperSU, and heres the details from my bootloader:
VLE PVT SHIP S-ON RL
HBOOT-1.06.0000
RADIO-0.15.315018.19
OpenDSP-v21.1.0.32.0314
eMMC boot
Mar 15 2012.23:37;23

And yes i used HTC Dev website to unlock it. got some sort of key and everything.

3. The recovery i use atm is CWM 5.8.3.1 the none touch version. Tried the touch version a few times, but it doesnt seem to work for me.

4. For ROM as i mentioned i really like AOSP, and can't really see myself going for a Sense ROM unless there's something really awesome out there. Ive used CM 9 and 10, AOKP, ParanoidAndroid and one of those Pac-man ROMs before, and they have all been decent. But now i want something newer. Preferably something over 4.1.2 as ive had that for probably a year now, and i need SOMETHING new. I dont particularly want anything that isn't as complete as possible. The ROM im rocking now reboots my phone ATLEAST 1-2 times a day, and have some minor Wi-Fi issues. (not really that bad anymore after buying an expensive new ASUS Router)
So those are like my only things when it comes to ROMs. Doesnt need to be as flashy as coming with a completly themed interface and that sorts
23rd April 2014, 01:34 AM   |  #4  
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I like CM11. It seems to running ok, but better check the latest in the thread.

http://forum.xda-developers.com/show...28113&page=367
23rd April 2014, 01:39 AM   |  #5  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahrern

1. According to Quadrant i have a CPU Frequency of 1512MHz, so by definition that should make it a S4
2. For recovery, im almost 100 percent sure its SuperSU, and heres the details from my bootloader:
VLE PVT SHIP S-ON RL
HBOOT-1.06.0000
RADIO-0.15.315018.19
OpenDSP-v21.1.0.32.0314
eMMC boot
Mar 15 2012.23:37;23

And yes i used HTC Dev website to unlock it. got some sort of key and everything.

3. The recovery i use atm is CWM 5.8.3.1 the none touch version. Tried the touch version a few times, but it doesnt seem to work for me.

4. For ROM as i mentioned i really like AOSP, and can't really see myself going for a Sense ROM unless there's something really awesome out there. Ive used CM 9 and 10, AOKP, ParanoidAndroid and one of those Pac-man ROMs before, and they have all been decent. But now i want something newer. Preferably something over 4.1.2 as ive had that for probably a year now, and i need SOMETHING new. I dont particularly want anything that isn't as complete as possible. The ROM im rocking now reboots my phone ATLEAST 1-2 times a day, and have some minor Wi-Fi issues. (not really that bad anymore after buying an expensive new ASUS Router)
So those are like my only things when it comes to ROMs. Doesnt need to be as flashy as coming with a completly themed interface and that sorts

OK, I got more info now, maybe some others will step in and give you their opinions and advices. What I can tell

1. SuperSU is not a recovery (you already said you're using CWM)...it's the root program.

2. You have hboot 1.06 the same I had on my device some time ago (not too long ago). It has some advantages and some disadvantages. I'll try to be brief and prsent you all and you can decide what you wanna do.

First some background: S-Of basically means you are able to write to certain partitions on your device, partitions that are normally locked. Most important are the firmware/hboot partition, radio partition and kernel partition. If you are S-On, you cannot write/flash radio or firmware and you MUST flash any kernel via a separate command in fastboot.

Now what makes 1.06 hboot so special...it is behaving like a partial S-Off device even if you are not S-Off. What does this mean? You will be able to flash radios and kernels as any other S-Off user. Only thing you won't be able to flash is the firmware/hboot. On the other hand, all new ROMs require hboot 2.13/2.15 or the leaked 2.16. That means that IF your current hboot allows you to run such a ROM, you won't be able to flash it unless you're editting EVERY TIME the updater-script in the ROM ZIP you're flashing to bypass the hboot check. So things will become little bit complicated.

To avoid all these you should first S-Off then you should upgrade to hboot 2.15. This is the last official firmware and it is supported by all new KitKat ROMs. DO NOT flash 2.16 firmware unless you would like to flash and use Sense based ROMs like MaximusHD.

I made S-Off by using Rummrunner because I found it the simplest way to do it...it's like a one-press-S-Off. If that doesn't work for you, you can try other methods like Facepalm or Moonshine. You can find separate threads for each in Dev section and I'll also link them below

Rummrunner
Facepalm
Moonshine

After you made S-Off, next step will be to upgrade your hboot/firmware to 2.15. You can use the flashable ZIP from THIS thread and you'll find info on how to do it in the thread. I would suggest you to choose the Unbranded 2.15 hboot and that has also the red warning gone (the one you see when start up the device with "This device is for development purposes only...bla bla bla")

For all the above you might also want to check/try a tool that incorporates most of them. You can find it in THIS thread.

Now that you have S-Off and upgraded your hboot, you might want to flash a newer radio. Hint:If you're satisfied with your current signal strength, mobile data and so on, don't flash another radio. Even if in a ROM thread it is recommended or mandatory a certain radio, my advice is to first try the ROM with your current one and only if performance is not satisfactory, flash another radio.You can find radios in tecardo's thread HERE or if you want the newer radios you can find radio 1.20 HERE or 1.35a HERE. One more note regarding tecardo's thread with the radio collection...that thread is old and some info is not updated. Just remember that you must flash ONLY the V6 Sense Radio installer for any ROM you'll be using, being it sense based or AOSP. Also ignore that warning that the procedure is only for hboots below 1.3...at that time there was no S-Off (remember what I've said about the particularities of 1.06 hboot earlier). Now things are different, you're S-Off so you will just need to flash it

Before flashing, you might consider upgrading to a newer recovery. I would recommend you the latest official TWRP 2.7.0.0 that will support flashing anything made for hboot 2.15. If and only if you decide to try sense ROMs based on hboot 2.16, you'll need a different recovery specific for 2.16 and that you'll get from that specific ROM thread. Official TWRP downloads for Ville S4 are HERE

Now youre almost done. You just need to pick your ROM and flash it...pretty difficult task considering how many they are. I tested most of AOSP ones and also some Sense based ones (not the ones for hboot 2.16 tho). I don't want to advice too much here since it could be considered I favour one or another...the truth is I do and that's normal, but I'd like to be objective

First, all KitKat ROMs are pretty stable. On CM11 there are regular nightlies and there are also less stable or bugged builds but this is expected. So you might try several ROMs to see which suits you most and you can decide by reading each ROM's thread. I'll list some ROMs (not all), the ones that are updated most often and I've tested, in no particular order...in fact I'll list them alphabetically to avoid interpretations

AOSP based
Beanstalk
CandyKat
CM11
Infamous (IOAP)
PAC-Man
TwistedKat
Vanir

Sense based
Viper ROM 3.1.3
Liberty ROM


Sorry for the long post but I wanted to get most in a single place and if you'll have more questions we'll detail them later. Just try something... READ READ READ...each thread contains valuable info about each procedure and step and also the experience of the users. I know it is easier to ask but don't forget it's YOUR PHONE and YOUR INTEREST to see things working on it. So you should make some effort to read and search also

Good luck
Last edited by Rapier; 23rd April 2014 at 01:48 AM.
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23rd April 2014, 01:51 AM   |  #6  
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I've read the entirety of your post now, and it's definetly helpful!
As it's pretty late here atm, i will come back to the tread tomorrow and S-Off and all that jazz. Im not a complete moron on this area, allthough thats what it probably seemed like :P Im glad i asked before i did anything, cause this was alot more complicated then when i was flashing ROMs when the phone came out.
I will definetly try to hold on to my current Radio as i have had no complaints ever on connection and service. So thanks for telling me about that, otherwise i would probably have flashed a new one each time.

Ill be sure to keep you posted on my progress tomorrow, just incase i totally **** up or something, or just cant get myself to understand something. If it is as easy to flash ROMs as it used to be once im ready to flash again, ill figure out my Next ROM, so im grateful that you listed a few of them that i can try out.

Again i wanna thank you for taking the time to explain a total Noob how to go about doing this, i really appreciate it!
23rd April 2014, 01:57 AM   |  #7  
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rapier's post just about expresses all the basic info you need, couldnt have been put better!!

as far as going on to the newer sense based roms i'd suggest not to take that road yet as they require hboot 2.16 and it can get fairly tricky to go back to the previous hboot.
also for hboot 2.15 also you have more choice for roms available... just a point of view!!

happy flashing!!
23rd April 2014, 01:09 PM   |  #8  
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So, now im totally lost. did the S-off, and now im trying to do the firmware, but im clueless here as i cant find the folder adb/fastboot in my platfomr-tools sdk folder or whatever you wanna call it. It wants me to place the firmware inside the adb folder, and i cant find any folder with that name.

I followed a guide on how to get adb working on my computer as i did not have that anymore on my PC, so had to redo it.

was following the guide, and did not see this "2. Now place the Firmware_named_something.zip into your adb/fastboot folder" at first, and tried to flash and was welcomed with cannot open "named file here" for obvious reasons when i saw step 2.

but this step 2 is what is confusing me, as ive mentioned, there is no adb/fastboot folder. is this a folder i make somewhere in my sdk? or what am i missing here. to give you the full info, i used this guide:
http://forum.xda-developers.com/show....php?t=1752270
the second post.

i remember having fastboot in that sdk folder on my old PC, but did not get it this time around when following these instructions, maybe thats what im missing
23rd April 2014, 02:42 PM   |  #9  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahrern

So, now im totally lost. did the S-off, and now im trying to do the firmware, but im clueless here as i cant find the folder adb/fastboot in my platfomr-tools sdk folder or whatever you wanna call it. It wants me to place the firmware inside the adb folder, and i cant find any folder with that name.

I followed a guide on how to get adb working on my computer as i did not have that anymore on my PC, so had to redo it.

was following the guide, and did not see this "2. Now place the Firmware_named_something.zip into your adb/fastboot folder" at first, and tried to flash and was welcomed with cannot open "named file here" for obvious reasons when i saw step 2.

but this step 2 is what is confusing me, as ive mentioned, there is no adb/fastboot folder. is this a folder i make somewhere in my sdk? or what am i missing here. to give you the full info, i used this guide:
http://forum.xda-developers.com/show....php?t=1752270
the second post.

i remember having fastboot in that sdk folder on my old PC, but did not get it this time around when following these instructions, maybe thats what im missing

ADB/fastboot are not folders, are commands. What that instruction meant was to place the firmware zip in the same folder where your ADB/fastboot executable is. Usually this is in "android-sdk/platform-tools". You'll notice there the ADB and fastboot executables
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23rd April 2014, 03:31 PM   |  #10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rapier

ADB/fastboot are not folders, are commands. What that instruction meant was to place the firmware zip in the same folder where your ADB/fastboot executable is. Usually this is in "android-sdk/platform-tools". You'll notice there the ADB and fastboot executables

OMG! That makes more sense, still that sentence he used in the guide was pretty misleading though. literally tried making a fastboot folder with the .exe in alot of different folders xD

Will try that one out and see if it works! Thanks, AGAIN!

EDIT:

Just tried to put the firmware inside C:/android/sdk/platform-tools/ folder, but still i got
"Error: Can not open 'Fuu_Downgrade2.15_Unbranded.zip'

EDIT:
Turns out there was a program instead of a .exe :s just tried though, and it failed.
"FAILED (rempote: 99 unknown fail)

EDIT:
Apparently the S-OFF didnt work. Tried Rumrunner, as i didnt understand jack **** about the alternatives

EDIT:
Tried Facepalm aswell, not 100 percent sure if i did it right though, as there was no confirmation anywhere, but still no S-OFF
Last edited by Jahrern; 23rd April 2014 at 05:07 PM. Reason: needed to add a few things

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