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How-to: Backup and restore your IMEI / MEID / EFS Data

OP xMopx

23rd July 2012, 05:33 PM   |  #1  
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EDIT:

THIS SHOULD NO LONGER BE USED.

PLEASE SEE THIS THREAD FOR RECOVERING YOUR IMEI - http://forum.xda-developers.com/show....php?t=1802024



Hi guys,

I tried flashing AOKP on my S3 yesterday and had my IMEI value set to zero, a rare(ish) error that some users have been running into with AOKP and the unofficial Cyanogen builds for this phone. If your IMEI is lost and you don't have a backup, your phone is basically toasted. So, I had to get my phone replaced which wasn't much trouble.

After speaking with invisiblek we determined a way to back up the EFS partition (which is where the IMEI and MEID is stored).

You need to do this on a rooted phone, it's been tested only with root66. You need USB debugging on and adb on your computer.

Code:
adb shell
su
dd if=/dev/block/mmcblk0p11 of=/sdcard/efs.sbn

(exit adb)

adb pull /sdcard/efs.sbn
DD is a linux utility that can be used to copy data from point a to point b and many, many ways. What we did here is copied the EFS partition to a single file (and then copied it to your PC). The efs.sbn file was about 13.6mb, but I've heard reports as low as 10mb. We can reverse this process to restore as well:

Code:
adb push efs.sbn /sdcard/efs.sbn
adb shell
su
dd if=/sdcard/efs.sbn of=/dev/block/mmcblk0p11
reboot
This time we wrote the backup file to the EFS partition. After doing this you need to dial *2767*3855# to re-provision your phone.

My experience: When installing AOKP, my IMEI was replaced with most of my MEID, even after reverting my rom to root66. (This causes mobile data not to work). After restoring my backup and provisioning, I regained full functionality of my data and phone. I haven't had a chance to try this with a phone where the IMEI is set to 0, but I think it's safe to assume this would fix that as well.

I would HIGHLY recommend making a backup before doing anything to your phone. Making a backup is read-only is poses no chance of something going wrong.

EDIT: For clarification: If your IMEI is already messed up, this will NOT get it back. You need a backup from BEFORE it was corrupted.
Last edited by xMopx; 30th July 2012 at 09:23 PM.
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23rd July 2012, 05:47 PM   |  #2  
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Can we run this in Terminal Emulator to get the same output? Last time I tried ADB on this phone I wasn't recognizing it. Could have been my computer though. ADB devices came back with no attached devices last time.


Looks possible. Your just telling it to save that file to the root of the internal SD and then telling ADB to pull it. Don't see why you couldn't save to SD then just Dropbox it or something.

Edit: Did it in Terminal Emulator. Saved to SD. Uploaded to Dropbox. Will also hook up my phone and pull it that way. Looks like pushing will work the same way as long as the file is on the root of SD.
Last edited by jdubau55; 23rd July 2012 at 05:54 PM.
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23rd July 2012, 06:19 PM   |  #3  
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Thanks so much. I also ran with terminal emulator and backed up.

Hopefully someone can verify that this will work with the IMEI = 0 issue, as that will allow us to continue to flash!
23rd July 2012, 06:42 PM   |  #4  
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Worked for me in Terminal as well. Zipped it up and emailed to myself. 13.6MB
23rd July 2012, 06:49 PM   |  #5  
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so I have a question about this -
I flashed CM9 the other day and it was taking over 20 min to activate and I did a battery pull, then I restarted and it activated just fine.
then i started reading all these posts about how that will break your IMEI and it got me wondering because I no longer get 4g, I get 3G just not 4G.

before I did this my MEID read the same as my IMEI but had less numbers. (just like 2 or 3) after doing *2767*3855# go back into status and see that I now have HEX and DEC under MEID which I did not have BEFORE the *2767*3855#

my question is - is there a way to test the 4G some how - I checked VZW site it says I am in a 4G area, is there a number of sort I can look at in status or somewhere else on my phone?
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23rd July 2012, 06:54 PM   |  #6  
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I'm new to this can someone tell me would in use those same commands on terminal emulator to get it? And I'm on unofficial cynogen right now so my next question is if I do corrupt it how do I place the imei back to get it woeking? Thanks

Sent from my SCH-I535 using xda premium
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23rd July 2012, 07:03 PM   |  #7  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruben8448

I'm new to this can someone tell me would in use those same commands on terminal emulator to get it? And I'm on unofficial cynogen right now so my next question is if I do corrupt it how do I place the imei back to get it woeking? Thanks

Sent from my SCH-I535 using xda premium

yes use

su
dd if=/dev/block/mmcblk0p11 of=/sdcard/efs.sbn

and to restore

su
dd if=/sdcard/efs.sbn of=/dev/block/mmcblk0p11
reboot
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23rd July 2012, 07:11 PM   |  #8  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruben8448

I'm new to this can someone tell me would in use those same commands on terminal emulator to get it? And I'm on unofficial cynogen right now so my next question is if I do corrupt it how do I place the imei back to get it woeking? Thanks

Sent from my SCH-I535 using xda premium

If using terminal emulator just skip straight to the line that has "su" on it and go from there. Same thing when putting it back in after it gets messed up.

The key is to put it somewhere safe as it will store it on your internal sdcard. This is called "sdcard" on your device. I just sent a copy to my drop box.

If it gets mesed up, then I would Odin back to stock rooted and just take the copy you have stored somewhere other than on your phone and put it back in the "sdcard" but not in any folder, just in the root directory. Then simply follow the restore directions in the OP but skip straight to the SU line.

That said. I'm still waiting until the RIL gets fixed. TW isn't that bad and with the mods and replacement launchers and apps the phone is nearly stock anyway. I'm being patient.



Sent from my SGS3
Last edited by Schaweet; 23rd July 2012 at 07:14 PM.
23rd July 2012, 07:13 PM   |  #9  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tprouty

so I have a question about this -
I flashed CM9 the other day and it was taking over 20 min to activate and I did a battery pull, then I restarted and it activated just fine.
then i started reading all these posts about how that will break your IMEI and it got me wondering because I no longer get 4g, I get 3G just not 4G.

before I did this my MEID read the same as my IMEI but had less numbers. (just like 2 or 3) after doing *2767*3855# go back into status and see that I now have HEX and DEC under MEID which I did not have BEFORE the *2767*3855#

my question is - is there a way to test the 4G some how - I checked VZW site it says I am in a 4G area, is there a number of sort I can look at in status or somewhere else on my phone?

Download the "Phone Info" app and see if you can change it to get 4g again. if not, you might wanna try restoring back to stock using ODIN to see if that helps.
23rd July 2012, 07:21 PM   |  #10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tprouty

yes use

su
dd if=/dev/block/mmcblk0p11 of=/sdcard/efs.sbn

and to restore

su
dd if=/sdcard/efs.sbn of=/dev/block/mmcblk0p11
reboot

Thanks, its backed up. I feel better now in case i need to restore back to stock. I appreciate it.

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