Before trying this i would recommend that you try using z4root first. z4 will root most devices.
When i wrote this i did it for the assistance of cellular south customers that were concerned that all of the rooting methods erroneously appear to be sprint specific. This, however, should work with all hero's.
recently it was brought to my attention that the Androot program will not work with the most recent update from sprint. if you find this to be the case with your hero, try Regaw's rooter here http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=909258
If AndRoot does not work for you try Regaw's rooter here http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=909258
Need to root a cellular south hero? this should also work on most all carriers. (I am a cellular south hero user, this is the method that i used and it worked just fine.)
before we begin you need to change some settings on the phone. go to SETTINGS -> APPLICATIONS check the box that says 'Unknown Sources'
then go to SETTINGS -> APPLICATIONS -> DEVELOPMENT and check 'USB Debugging'
you will also need to have HTC Sync installed (you may want to consider downloading the android SDK so that you have tools like ADB (android device bridge) which allows you to execute shell commands on the phone and push and pull data from a command line. for the purposes of this tutorial it is not necessary to have the sdk.)
you need to download Universal AndRoot. you can either download it to your computer and copy it to your phone or download it directly to your phone. the PC download link is here
if you want to download directly to your phone open your barcode scanner and point it at the following QR Code.
you also need a file manager such as ASTRO, this is available from the android market on your phone. once you have ASTRO on your phone, browse the SDCARD for the Universal AndRoot file that you downloaded. once you find it tap on it and choose Application Manager, and select install.
run AndRoot select Root and let it do its thing.
if you just wanted Root access to run programs that require root stop here, you are now rooted.
/------- End of Rooting Guide-------/
if you want to install a custom rom on your hero continue.
/---- Start of custom rom guide ----/
1st make sure that you have at least 500 MB free on your sdcard. it is a good idea to have a fully charged battery but not necessary, just make sure that you have at least 30% battery charged before you try using nandroid.
at any point after this you may be asked to allow superuser permissions to different programs that we are using. make sure that you grant them.
Ok next you need a custom recovery image. there are two that i know of. Clockworkmod and Amon, for this tutorial i am using ClockworkMod. if you want to use Amon stop here and search xda for further help on that, i have not used Amon.
if, like me, you really had no preference which one you use. continue.
go back to the Android Market and download ROM Manager by Clockworkmod. this will also install ClockworkMod Recovery Image. allow it to do its thing.
now find what ROM you wish to run (ie: DangerRom, Cynogenmod, Fresh, Zen... etc...) download it to your computer and copy it to your SDCARD.
next boot the phone in recovery mode. to do this turn the phone off. press and hold Home and Power until you get to the Clockworkmod recovery screen.
using the trackball to scroll and select move down to Nandroid. and create a backup of your phone. (note: make sure that you have at least 30% battery before starting nandroid backup or restore.)
once the backup is complete the Green text menu will appear at the top. use the back button on your phone to go back.
now 'Wipe data/factory reset' and confirm.
also clear the dalvik cache on your phone.
now choose 'Install zip from sdcard' then 'choose zip from sdcard' locate the ROM you want to install and select it. confirm your selections.
wait for green menu to appear again select 'reboot system now' if this isn't an option use the back button and then choose it.
this first boot will be a very very long one (can be up to 10 min). be very patient.
if the phone goes into a 'bootloop' don't panic
(this is described as the phone showing the HTC logo then the ROM logo then repeats over and over again. please note that it is normal on some roms for the HTC logo to come back once just before the getting started app loads)
to fix a bootloop pull the battery from the phone to stop the process then boot in to recovery (home and power) and Wipe the data and the Dalvik cache. then reboot.
if you are still stuck in a bootloop go back to recovery and choose nandroid -> restore and restore to your previous rom.
I hope that this helps everyone that is looking to root and/or install custom rom on their Cellular South Hero.
NOTE: there is a lot of talk about radio versions and upgrading. if you decide to do this you, are on your own. flashing a bad radio is the only known way to completely brick your phone. only flash a new radio if you are absolutely 100% sure that it will work with your phone and have checked the MD5 checksum.