So, having had a little bit of time to catch up somewhat on recent happenings...
Between these two threads:
Gain root access on the latest 1.55.531.3 update, ONLY IF you are S-OFF
HBOOT (1.44.0006) missing fastboot oem commands
... it's shaping up where the answer will be to end up lifting the restrictions that prevent us from writing to certain memory when flashing things.
Originally Posted by Blue6IX
re-writing the software to allow you to flash things out of the safe memory range in recovery mode would be a disastrously bad idea. We will start getting reports of bricked phones left and right if someone does that.
Let me qualify the above warning - the MT4GS crowd seems to be more along the lines of asking questions and then flashing, instead of just flashing and asking questions when there's a problem.
I wonder how much of that is because we are a smaller section of the XDA forums compared to the endless amounts of threads some other phones have that have been around for a while - or if it's because you mostly can't get yourself into too much trouble with it. Maybe because of the device cost people tend to research it more and just start with a better grip?
Consider this thread from a while ago:
How many bricked phones?
How many sub-forums on xda do you find only one thread talking about bricked handsets for that model, and it's only a handful of posts long and everyone is happy and upbeat. Not a problem in the world.
Heck, part of the short thread doesn't even discuss bricked phones and nothing is left out about it happening to anyone.
If we choose to open this door and figure out how to write out of the protected memory range - bringing that option down to the level of any user who can download and flash a package ( or near enough to it ) - how long before our first bricked phone from flashing something?
With the back and forth on re-locking and actively having control of our devices taken away from us a risk with every update ... we just may end up having to anyway but before that happens just keep this in mind.
I'm not saying don't do it, as we are getting boxed into the corner of that being all we have to work with, but before it happens I just want everyone to consider the implications of doing it.
The nature of open source can place a lot of responsibility on the end user simply because you have all the freedom you need to screw yourself beyond repair. This is one of those times where that's what's going to happen.
I know i'm fine with it, and a lot of people who are here now would be fine too, but now that this device is being given out instead of older devices we'll be getting new people that maybe didn't seek out the device and thereby learn about it first.
For how often you see people who just ended up with that device and flashed something not knowing what it did and breaking their handset, that's a hard thing to do here even if you wanted to.
I'm definitely at least half un-sympathetic for anyone that happens to - if you flash stuff without taking the time to read what it does you deserve what you get.
Here is a response I made to a thread where someone was trying to pass the cost of the device on to either the carrier or the manufacturer when they broke it through their own willful fault. Neither the carrier nor the manufacturer broke the phone, complete responsibility for the fault rests on the end user.
And really, the problem of forcing the manufacturer to eat the cost of the device when it's not they are not to blame does more then just raise cost we pay at retail.
You could absolutely articulate the argument that it's their fault we had to do this, since they left us bereft of other options, but in the end we're the ones who suffer the most as the individuals trying to get hardware we can do what we want to - and it's already an expensive device.
Some of you have realized how cautious I am about losing data and this and that, so making this observation is just my nature...
Again, not saying don't do it - the way things are going we'll probably have to figure out how to make it happen. We will gain options we definitely don't have now past the pressing issues too, which is another reason to do this.
Just want people to realize what we're actually doing before it happens.
I'll cross-post this to the other thread quoted at the top of this post, as these two will represent the majority of the ingress to opening up protected memory space.