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Cool [Q] Sudden Death Syndrome on ATT GS3 i747?

OP Top5a

9th June 2014, 11:27 AM   |  #1  
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The best part about spending 30 minutes typing a post is having your browser crash. Anyway, if you have any further questions because this is going to be a bit brief, let me know.

My background: Fairly well-versed in Android, custom ROMs, flashing, rooting, doing development work on Android, reading directions, decent google-fu and RTFMing. But I really need help on this one. The phone in question is my primary phone, which I actually like to keep as stock because I don't want anything mucking up on it. It's 20 months old (daily usage), running stock 4.1.1, which was rooted about 17 months ago with cf autoroot, which I needed for development purposes. For the past 10 months, I have been using an extended aftermarket battery, because when traveling and thusly using navigation, gtranslate, lots of messaging, and whatnot with a bright screen whilst outdoors, I was tired of having my phone leave me without a communications device at 8pm.

Recent changes to phone: Several weeks ago, before another bout of traveling, I did my usual *#197328640# perso256 disable (one of the reasons that I like keeping my phone at 4.1.1), and voila -- carrier unlock.

What happened: Things were going swimmingly for a few weeks, when one day, I was out and about, typing something into google translate, and the screen just went black. It was early midday, and the phone was at 90% battery (extended battery life ftmfw). Every now and then, when doing serious multitasking (and, mind you, since the early days of owning this phone, as well as through the entire life of my GS1, which still works, by the way), my GS3 would occasionally reboot of its own accord. I thought nothing of this, except it just being a hallmark of samsung phones, and a minor inconvenience, at worst. This time, however, it failed to power back on. I removed the battery, held in power button in an attempt to discharge any residual power, and put the battery back in. Nothing. Panic. No ssung logo, no vibration, no lights, nothing. Just the black screen staring back at me. There was no moisture, and no trauma to the phone... nothing, save for a ridiculous sinking sensation.

Symptoms: Phone completely unresponsive. I tried a charged stock GS3 battery, and the symptoms are the same. If I plug the phone in without a battery, the led lights up red for a time, and that's it. Even though I haven't modded this phone at all, with the exception of the rooting almost 2 years ago, I tried everything I could think of and read online. vol up + power + home. vol down + power + home. Leaving the battery out for a while. So much reading through these forums and some others online. When I plug it in in windows (even though I primarily use linux), I get the QHSUSB_DLOAD problem, so I do not think it is a problem with the power button? Or maybe the power button can be permanently depressed or something that would cause this? Anyway, I've installed QHSUSB_DLOAD windows drivers, but don't want to start flashing things until I know there isn't another longshot option to get this to work. I even loaded up linux and ran pblclear, which allegedly attempts to knock HTC phones out of being stuck in QHSUSB_DLOAD mode. Didn't work, but figured it was worth a shot, and seemed relatively harmless.

Why I don't even know if it's SDS: The reason I'm asking this is because I'm completely at a loss. SDS appears to affect i9000s after 150-200 days, OR when people incorrectly flash a ROM, or something happens during flashing or modification. My phone is an ATT i747 has been fully operative for 600+ days, and I haven't done any flashing, rooting, whathaveyou in nearly two years (and it was just that simple autoroot that I ran once).

What I'm wondering: I really want to get this phone working, because of hundreds of images, notes, data, etc. that I have accrued over the past few years. Most of my videos and larger files were on my sd card, but literally hundreds of memories and works in progress that I would do insane things for were saved to the phone. I'm an idiot for not backing it up, but I wasn't doing anything to the phone, so wasn't expecting such a catastrophe. Will JTAG work? What about a debricking microsd image? Most of the ones I can find are for 4.1.2 or 4.1.3 -- are there any for 4.1.1? I'm nearly certain 4.1.1 is my version, because IICR 4.1.2 and 4.1.3 don't even have the perso256 disable menu, and it's why I had not upgraded to them. It seems like the microsd rewrites would wipe the contents, and then I would have to quickly attempt a recovery on the data? Or have there been any cases with similar failures that are something else dying on the board? To be perfectly honest, if it appears to be an issue with the board, it's not beyond my ability to perform BGA rework and remove the emmc entirely, and transplant it onto a new board, but I would ///really/// like to avoid that.

Thanks for reading...

Edit:

Additional information: I forgot to mention that I have found pages such as this samsung-galaxy-s3-sgh-i747-i747m-repair-dead-boot-1755452 [I'm afraid you'll have to google it because I can't post links if you want to look TT^TT] which have files that say, for example, "Samsung SGH-I747 Repair Boot Supported" if using JTAG. So, if there aren't suggestions about how I can fix my phone with an sdcard unbrick, or something else, does anyone know whether or not doing a boot repair will unbrick a phone without wiping the ROM itself? Thanks again~~
Last edited by Top5a; 9th June 2014 at 01:20 PM. Reason: added additional information
10th June 2014, 04:25 AM   |  #2  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Top5a

The best part about spending 30 minutes typing a post is having your browser crash. Anyway, if you have any further questions because this is going to be a bit brief, let me know.

My background: Fairly well-versed in Android, custom ROMs, flashing, rooting, doing development work on Android, reading directions, decent google-fu and RTFMing. But I really need help on this one. The phone in question is my primary phone, which I actually like to keep as stock because I don't want anything mucking up on it. It's 20 months old (daily usage), running stock 4.1.1, which was rooted about 17 months ago with cf autoroot, which I needed for development purposes. For the past 10 months, I have been using an extended aftermarket battery, because when traveling and thusly using navigation, gtranslate, lots of messaging, and whatnot with a bright screen whilst outdoors, I was tired of having my phone leave me without a communications device at 8pm.

Recent changes to phone: Several weeks ago, before another bout of traveling, I did my usual *#197328640# perso256 disable (one of the reasons that I like keeping my phone at 4.1.1), and voila -- carrier unlock.

What happened: Things were going swimmingly for a few weeks, when one day, I was out and about, typing something into google translate, and the screen just went black. It was early midday, and the phone was at 90% battery (extended battery life ftmfw). Every now and then, when doing serious multitasking (and, mind you, since the early days of owning this phone, as well as through the entire life of my GS1, which still works, by the way), my GS3 would occasionally reboot of its own accord. I thought nothing of this, except it just being a hallmark of samsung phones, and a minor inconvenience, at worst. This time, however, it failed to power back on. I removed the battery, held in power button in an attempt to discharge any residual power, and put the battery back in. Nothing. Panic. No ssung logo, no vibration, no lights, nothing. Just the black screen staring back at me. There was no moisture, and no trauma to the phone... nothing, save for a ridiculous sinking sensation.

Symptoms: Phone completely unresponsive. I tried a charged stock GS3 battery, and the symptoms are the same. If I plug the phone in without a battery, the led lights up red for a time, and that's it. Even though I haven't modded this phone at all, with the exception of the rooting almost 2 years ago, I tried everything I could think of and read online. vol up + power + home. vol down + power + home. Leaving the battery out for a while. So much reading through these forums and some others online. When I plug it in in windows (even though I primarily use linux), I get the QHSUSB_DLOAD problem, so I do not think it is a problem with the power button? Or maybe the power button can be permanently depressed or something that would cause this? Anyway, I've installed QHSUSB_DLOAD windows drivers, but don't want to start flashing things until I know there isn't another longshot option to get this to work. I even loaded up linux and ran pblclear, which allegedly attempts to knock HTC phones out of being stuck in QHSUSB_DLOAD mode. Didn't work, but figured it was worth a shot, and seemed relatively harmless.

Why I don't even know if it's SDS: The reason I'm asking this is because I'm completely at a loss. SDS appears to affect i9000s after 150-200 days, OR when people incorrectly flash a ROM, or something happens during flashing or modification. My phone is an ATT i747 has been fully operative for 600+ days, and I haven't done any flashing, rooting, whathaveyou in nearly two years (and it was just that simple autoroot that I ran once).

What I'm wondering: I really want to get this phone working, because of hundreds of images, notes, data, etc. that I have accrued over the past few years. Most of my videos and larger files were on my sd card, but literally hundreds of memories and works in progress that I would do insane things for were saved to the phone. I'm an idiot for not backing it up, but I wasn't doing anything to the phone, so wasn't expecting such a catastrophe. Will JTAG work? What about a debricking microsd image? Most of the ones I can find are for 4.1.2 or 4.1.3 -- are there any for 4.1.1? I'm nearly certain 4.1.1 is my version, because IICR 4.1.2 and 4.1.3 don't even have the perso256 disable menu, and it's why I had not upgraded to them. It seems like the microsd rewrites would wipe the contents, and then I would have to quickly attempt a recovery on the data? Or have there been any cases with similar failures that are something else dying on the board? To be perfectly honest, if it appears to be an issue with the board, it's not beyond my ability to perform BGA rework and remove the emmc entirely, and transplant it onto a new board, but I would ///really/// like to avoid that.

Thanks for reading...

Edit:

Additional information: I forgot to mention that I have found pages such as this samsung-galaxy-s3-sgh-i747-i747m-repair-dead-boot-1755452 [I'm afraid you'll have to google it because I can't post links if you want to look TT^TT] which have files that say, for example, "Samsung SGH-I747 Repair Boot Supported" if using JTAG. So, if there aren't suggestions about how I can fix my phone with an sdcard unbrick, or something else, does anyone know whether or not doing a boot repair will unbrick a phone without wiping the ROM itself? Thanks again~~

same thing just happened to my 20 month old att s3.i unlocked the bootloader and flashed a twrp recovery.the phone was on 4.1.1 and rooted.
now just a lifeless phone
10th June 2014, 09:30 AM   |  #3  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thorur

same thing just happened to my 20 month old att s3.i unlocked the bootloader and flashed a twrp recovery.the phone was on 4.1.1 and rooted.
now just a lifeless phone

Did it die closely after the unlocking/flashing? Or a long time after? Or was the unlocking/flashing an attempt to save the phone? Ever get it fixed? I'm so anxious!
11th June 2014, 08:21 PM   |  #4  
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I never heard of qualcomm chips doing this. There is a app called emmc brickbug check on the market though it won't be of much use to you now.....but it allows you to check the mem. Controller chip and check if its a "sane chip" and allows you to probe the memory for any bad sectors.....its really quite a nice app

Sent from my ATT Samsung Galaxy SIII using TapaTalk
11th June 2014, 08:41 PM   |  #5  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazymonkey05

I never heard of qualcomm chips doing this. There is a app called emmc brickbug check on the market though it won't be of much use to you now.....but it allows you to check the mem. Controller chip and check if its a "sane chip" and allows you to probe the memory for any bad sectors.....its really quite a nice app

Sent from my ATT Samsung Galaxy SIII using TapaTalk

Well, thanks for the input! Makes me feel a better hopefully the emmc isn't completely fried. I just really want my files, and am continually irritated at myself for having been so stupid to not make backups.. although I have phones from 10+ years ago that have never completely died in such an unexpected manner. It's quite the agonizing wait for a JTAG programmer to come in the mail. If I can manage to get it to boot from SD, which I haven't been able to do so far, do you think it's logical for me to simply reflash the bootloader/CWM, then attempt boot? It shouldn't erase files, right?
11th June 2014, 08:46 PM   |  #6  
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You can try a bootloader and recovery flash which might yield results.....and the plus side of that is that it won't wipe the memory unless you format the /data partition or you do a full Odin restore with ROM kernel and everything

Sent from my ATT Samsung Galaxy SIII using TapaTalk
12th June 2014, 11:36 PM   |  #7  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazymonkey05

You can try a bootloader and recovery flash which might yield results.....and the plus side of that is that it won't wipe the memory unless you format the /data partition or you do a full Odin restore with ROM kernel and everything

Sent from my ATT Samsung Galaxy SIII using TapaTalk

I've also searched everywhere for a debrick image for 4.1.1 AT&T... anyone know where I can get one? All I can find are ones for 4.1.3 =\
13th June 2014, 02:34 AM   |  #8  
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EXACT same problem here, let me know if you find anything

(Btw, my phone also had the "power button stuck down" issue, but your phone will vibrate when you put the battery in if this is the issue.)
Last edited by Sidetracking; 13th June 2014 at 02:55 AM.
13th June 2014, 02:51 AM   |  #9  
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If I'm not mistaken you will be able to Odin to 4.1.1 while using the 4.3 SD card debrick (again this is just guessing)

Sent from my ATT Samsung Galaxy SIII using TapaTalk
13th June 2014, 03:40 PM   |  #10  
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I've tried the SD card debricks for 4.3, and still nothing happens. Yea, I also don't get vibrate. As a long shot, I actually installed the qualcomm drivers and ran the qdload.sh script to attempt to send a signal which kicks the phone out of that mode (works on some... I want to say, HTC, phones), but, yea, I think the emmc just failed somehow. I'm hoping that the failure is just in the bootloader segment, and that by jtag reflashing the bootloader area, I should be able to boot. Either that, or even if one of the memory sectors died, hopefully it's not the one with my data partition. I still can't believe this ! Out of all the electronics I've ever used, aside from a hard drive or two, I've never had something like a phone just kick the bucket with no warning. gha !

Also, thanks for all the tips and stuff, guys and gals. Tell me if you figure out anything, and I'll let you know if I get it fixed with jtag.
Last edited by Top5a; 13th June 2014 at 03:47 PM.

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