It has been a long time since I posted to this thread. Back then, the Samsung Exhilarate had just come out, and there was no way to root it. Thanks to several other members, most notably j3r3goss and shabbypenguin, I was able to get root on this phone. As of now, this post is very old. The instructions here, are not needed for you to root your Samsung Exhilarate anymore. You are free to read through them, but you should pay attention to the last page (currently page 3). There, j3r3goss posted a link to the the TWRP or CWM recovery files, that you can now use to get root, without following the step-by-step instructions I posted below. I'm leaving the thread up, but for all intents and purposes, consider it closed.
Here's the link to the section you need in order to root your phone:
It has been fun, and I've been using my Exhilarate for nearly two years. Because I've been extremely busy, I haven't had time to keep up with the latest changes - but others have. I hope that you found these instructions useful.
In any case, take care and ROOT ON!
Everything past this point is old and no longer applicable
IMPORTANT NOTE: If you have UPDATED your phone to ICS, and want to root it, these instructions will work. You will not need to do the last part where you need to update the firmware keys!
Do you plan to update your phone from Gingerbread (Android 2.3) to Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0). Do that first! Otherwise, you'll just have to root again (not that that's a problem, but why???)
I) How to update to ICS:
1) Download Samsung Kies from here: http://www.samsung.com/us/kies/ if you haven't already, and install it, and then run it
2) Put your phone into ODIN (Download mode - see section II below).
3) When Kies detects you phone (your computer will need to install drivers, and then Kies will say it's connecting to your phone, and it will take about 3-4 minutes and finally connect to it), it should let you know that there is an update. Just follow the instructions on Kies and be patient. The phone will update, and once it reboots into normal mode, you'll know it's updated by going to "Settings" and if they are grouped into different sections, then you have ICS. Otherwise, you probably still have GB.
II) How to enter ODIN Mode:
For the Exhilarate I've found it's best to use this sequence:
1) Power phone down
2) Plug the USB cable into your computer (do not plug the phone into the USB cable yet).
3) While pushing and holding both the vol up and vol down buttons, plug the phone into the computer. As soon as you see "SAMSUNG" flash and then dissappear, release the buttons.
4) Phone should boot into ODIN mode.
III) How to Root
What you need:
1) Samsung Galaxy Exhilarate phone (unrooted)
2) microSD Card (any size of 1GB or larger will work)
3) USB cable to connect your phone to your computer
4) Files below
First, download all the files...
1) Download the latest version of ODIN here: ODIN.
2) Download the drivers here: Samsung Galaxy Drivers and run the setup program after unzipping.
3) Download the tar file here: www.Shabbypenguin.com/OUDstuff/Blaze4G/Clockworkmod-Blaze-4G.tar Don't mess with it, just download it somewhere where you can find it later
4) Download SuperUser here: SuperUser Save it somewhere where you can find it later.
Second, conduct the root:
1) Put your phone into Odin (Download mode - see Section II above).
2) With phone in ODIN mode, run Odin.1.85.exe (it's in the folder where you unzipped ODIN too).
3) Odin will launch on your computer. It should show, in the first box under ID:COM, a port in yellow. Mine was Port 5. This means you have successfully connected to your phone.
4) Click the button in ODIN labeled "PDA", and then browse to the .tar file you downloaded above and then select "Open". The file will show up next to the PDA button.
5) Make sure that "Re-Partition" is NOT checked!;
6) Click "Start" and wait till your phone reboots. It should reboot into normal mode. If it doesn't, just power down and reboot into normal mode.
7) Copy the SuperUser.zip file you downloaded above to your phones microSD card.
8) Reboot the phone into recovery mode: While pushing and holding both the vol up and vol down buttons, push the power button. As soon as you see "SAMSUNG" flash, release the buttons. You shouldn't need to have the phone connected to the computer this time. The phone will boot into CWM recovery.
9) using either: the "menu" button to move down and the "home" button to move your selection up; or alternately the volume down button to move down, and the volume up button to move up: highlight "install zip from sdcard". Use the "search" button or power button to select/enter.
10) highlight "choose zip from sdcard" and press the "seach" button to select it.
11) browse to the directory which you copied SuperUser to and select it.
12) scroll down to "Yes - Install Superuser" and select it.
13) Once done, reboot your phone into normal operating mode.
14) If rooting Gingerbread, see Section IV below.
15) If rooting either Gingerbread or ICS, see section V below.
16) If having issues with Root, see section VI below.
IV) Rooting Gingerbread?:
Last: Finish up (Steps 1-4 are ONLY needed if you are still using GingerBread and not Ice Cream Sandwich):
NOTE: Your buttons (the four at the bottom) WILL NOT work at this point. You need to do the following:
1) Push your phone dialer as if you were going to make a call.
2) Dial *#*#2663#*#*.
3) You will see the attached thumbnail below on your phone (stolen from j3r3goss).
4) press the bottom button that says "Touch key FW update". Wait. Once it's finished, your bottom row of buttons will work again!
Note: If you are on GB, and not ICS, every time you boot into recovery and then back into operational mode, you will need to do the four steps in this section above!
V) Using either GB or ICS:
You do need to do these last steps (I believe):
5) ADDENDUM/UPDATE: At this point, there is one last thing you need to do!: You must go to "Settings/Applications/Development" and Enable USB Debugging! If you don't do this, you will NOT be able to get root access! Also, if for any reason you turn off USB Debugging, make sure you turn it back on! If you lose root access, check this FIRST! If you still can't get root access, boot into recovery mode and wipe the Dalvik Cache, the regular Cache, and "Fix Permissions". Then double check to make sure USB Debugging is ENABLED!
6) You're done! Your phone is now rooted and you can do whatever you want!
If you run into problems
1) Check to make sure that SuperUser is installed on your phone. Check the apps section first, and then, use RootExplorer and check the System/bin folder. If you see SuperUser is in the system/bin folder, then you are very close to being rooted.
If it is not installed:
a) make sure that you copied the superuser.zip file to the EXTERNAL sdcard.
i) Boot the phone up normally
ii) plug the phone into your computer, pull the notification bar down, select USB connection, and tap the "Connect USB storage" button.
iii) Using Winbloze explorer, copy the SuperUser.zip to the external sdCard (on my computer, it is drive F:, and the Internal is drive G.
iv) disconnect once the copy is finished and use any file explorer on your phone to check the contents of the external sdCard (look in the "sdcard/external_sd" folder)
v) if it's not there, then you are doing something wrong. If it is there, shut down the phone, and boot into CWM recovery.
vi) Use CWM recovery to install the superuser.zip file on your phone.
vii) reboot into normal mode
viii) check to make sure that you have enabled USB Debugging
viii) check again to see if SuperUser is now in your apps, and in the system/bin folder.
ix) Run SuperUser 1x, and then close it out.
x) Run ANY app that requires Root Permissions. You should get a request from SuperUser to "Allow" or "Deny" the app root access. Make sure you allow root access. If you make a mistake, you'll need to launch superuser again and completely remove the app from the denied list.
2) Make sure USB Debugging is enabled.
3) if you still can't get root, boot into CWM Recovery, and try clearing the cache and the Dalvik cache, and resetting permissions, then reboot and check everything again. You may need to do this last step several times.
Beyond that, I don't know what else might be causing you to not gain root access, so keep trying.
If anyone has any questions, feel free to PM me.