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Alcatel TCL A502DL/A501DL root/custom recovery/custom roms?

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Solution
Bump. I found some information, but unfortunately the instructions are not very clear. I assume lehmancurtis means to go to fastboot with the boot mode tool, and then flash the TWRP.img with adb. However, I am not sure if this is the right way to do things and I do not have adb drivers for the A501DL or A502DL.
adb and fastboot include a generic Google driver and the VCOM driver installer for mtk includes what you'll need. Once in fastboot...
Code:
fastboot oem unlock-go
Follow the instructions on your device to unlock the bootloader. Then boot to system and reboot to fastboot with bootmode tool. Once in fastboot...
Code:
fastboot erase recovery
fastboot flash recovery...

lehmancurtis

Senior Member
Fastboot is hidden from conventional methods, but since it is a mtk device you should be able to use the mtk-boot-mode tool to reboot to fastboot. That is how I was able to access fastboot. The tool is a bit hit and miss and sometime you have to run it a few times to get it to work. I've built a few custom recoveries for the 502 and was able to use them before my display broke the rest of the way lol. The 501 is a very similar device. Mtk-su should give you a temp root (unless you have received the patch). If you are able to get anywhere with it, post the boot and recovery images and I'll build a custom recovery for it. Also, I can pack the other changes you will need to keep the stock ROM from replacing the recovery
 
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Hitti2

Senior Member
Fastboot is hidden from conventional methods, but since it is a mtk device you should be able to use the mtk-boot-mode tool to reboot to fastboot. That is how I was able to access fastboot. The tool is a bit hit and miss and sometime you have to run it a few times to get it to work. I've built a few custom recoveries for the 502 and was able to use them before my display broke the rest of the way lol. The 501 is a very similar device. Mtk-su should give you a temp root (unless you have received the patch). If you are able to get anywhere with it, post the boot and recovery images and I'll build a custom recovery for it. Also, I can pack the other changes you will need to keep the stock ROM from replacing the recovery
I thought there is a twrp for this device, i downloaded it and was planing to flash.

Where can i download this mtk boot mode tool?
 

lehmancurtis

Senior Member
I thought there is a twrp for this device, i downloaded it and was planing to flash.

Where can i download this mtk boot mode tool?
I put a link to the tool in my Alcatel idol 5 thread. The recovery is for the 502 which is very similar but the kernels are slightly different. But it wouldn't take me very long at all to compile one specifically for the 501 once I have the boot.img
 

0000.0000.00

Senior Member
Feb 13, 2017
177
45
Follow the readme file and you should be able to access fastboot mode as long as mtk-su works on your device. Same goes for the 502.
I have the tcl a1 (a501dl) and I tried using mtk-su but I get this error
Failed critical init step 4 UID: 2000 cap: 0000000000 selinux: enforcing
Not sure why I'm getting that error
I tried using the mtk-bootmode took but it didn't seem to work not sure what I did wrong there I tried rebooting and pressing volume down when rebooting or turning phone off and holding volume down and then plugging phone in but all of that didn't seem to work since the tool got stuck on "Waiting port" when trying to enter fastboot
I wasn't sure how to install the vcom drivers so I installed them from here and used the automatic installation.
The phone has a security patch level of February 5, 2020 so not sure why mtk-su doesn't work.
I did look at device manager and noticed a mediatek preloader thing appearing for a few seconds during boot.
 

lehmancurtis

Senior Member
I have the tcl a1 (a501dl) and I tried using mtk-su but I get this error
Failed critical init step 4 UID: 2000 cap: 0000000000 selinux: enforcing
Not sure why I'm getting that error
I tried using the mtk-bootmode took but it didn't seem to work not sure what I did wrong there I tried rebooting and pressing volume down when rebooting or turning phone off and holding volume down and then plugging phone in but all of that didn't seem to work since the tool got stuck on "Waiting port" when trying to enter fastboot
I wasn't sure how to install the vcom drivers so I installed them from here and used the automatic installation.
The phone has a security patch level of February 5, 2020 so not sure why mtk-su doesn't work.
I did look at device manager and noticed a mediatek preloader thing appearing for a few seconds during boot.
You have the patched version on your device. I'm not sure if we have a work around for this device yet or not. You would need to be able to flash the older stock ROM. Well, the lk binary is usually the only thing that needs to be downgraded.
 

0000.0000.00

Senior Member
Feb 13, 2017
177
45
You have the patched version on your device. I'm not sure if we have a work around for this device yet or not. You would need to be able to flash the older stock ROM. Well, the lk binary is usually the only thing that needs to be downgraded.
I looked but wasn't able to find any stock firmware for this phone. Has the mtk bootmode tool been patched or was I using it wrong?
 

lehmancurtis

Senior Member
I looked but wasn't able to find any stock firmware for this phone. Has the mtk bootmode tool been patched or was I using it wrong?
The tool hasn't been patched but I didn't create it so I am not sure what it uses in order to write to the misc partition in order to call for the device to boot into fastboot mode. My guess is that it used mtk-su or something very similar in order to gain the required permissions. Alcatel patched the lk binary disabling the exploit. That being said, it is possible that the patch also killed the tool. I don't know this for sure but the timing fits. I'll dig a bit deeper to see if I can verify this though.
 

0000.0000.00

Senior Member
Feb 13, 2017
177
45
Install Sugar_MTK. I just checked and a501 is supported. Follow the instructions in the Alcatel Tetra guide for using sugar to replace your lk binary. Use the lk from the zip I posted earlier in this thread.
How do you login to sugar mtk I tried the login info I found online but it didn't work I tried Username: SUBRECella and Password: Rampasbt12!
 

0000.0000.00

Senior Member
Feb 13, 2017
177
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lehmancurtis

Senior Member
This is a screenshot of the error I'm getting https://gyazo.com/77940c6dc66ba36d24bf9a289babd225
If I paste in a username and password that's different from those credentials which you said were correct, I get this error instead https://gyazo.com/b9f5f3dc407b360fcdfb52e24a4a838d
I got sugar from here and downloaded the newest version
I've never seen either of those errors. But, I have a message when I start mine that says forbidden version lol. I'll get it linked asap.
 
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0000.0000.00

Senior Member
Feb 13, 2017
177
45
I've never seen either of those errors. But, I have a message when I start mine that says forbidden version lol. I'll get it linked asap.
I did also try a few different versions and even tried following some youtube tutorials but none of them seem to have worked to let me login to sugar. I tried sugar in a virtual machine as well but that didn't let me get past login either.
 

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    This is a screenshot of the error I'm getting https://gyazo.com/77940c6dc66ba36d24bf9a289babd225
    If I paste in a username and password that's different from those credentials which you said were correct, I get this error instead https://gyazo.com/b9f5f3dc407b360fcdfb52e24a4a838d
    I got sugar from here and downloaded the newest version
    I've never seen either of those errors. But, I have a message when I start mine that says forbidden version lol. I'll get it linked asap.
  • 1
    Bump. I found some information, but unfortunately the instructions are not very clear. I assume lehmancurtis means to go to fastboot with the boot mode tool, and then flash the TWRP.img with adb. However, I am not sure if this is the right way to do things and I do not have adb drivers for the A501DL or A502DL.
    adb and fastboot include a generic Google driver and the VCOM driver installer for mtk includes what you'll need. Once in fastboot...
    Code:
    fastboot oem unlock-go
    Follow the instructions on your device to unlock the bootloader. Then boot to system and reboot to fastboot with bootmode tool. Once in fastboot...
    Code:
    fastboot erase recovery
    fastboot flash recovery recovery.img
    fastboot oem reboot-recovery
    Then it should boot to TWRP. Be sure to format data f2fs to remove encryption so you can mount data.
    And you will need to install Magisk from recovery to have root and keep. OEM recovery from replacing TWRP.
    1
    Make sure to install the MTK VCOM drivers first, the android drivers from google or samsung will not work!
    I was able to bootloader unlock my Alcatel 3T 8, even being on tmobile using the boot selector tool
    1
    I cannot get to fastboot even if I follow these steps... @williamhancock328` @lehmancurtis

    It still says "waiting port" forever.
    It sometime takes a few tries to get the phone and tool to do what its supposed to, but if you get the waiting message start over until the program reboots the device. It will work, it's just not a perfect process.
    1
    Just to confirm:
    To prevent the OEM recovery from replacing TWRP, I have to flash Magisk.
    If I flashed a gsi, would this problem still be present?

    edit: if I wanted to flash a gsi, would I be able to flash "A" only roms, "AB" only roms, or A/AB roms?

    edit2: @lehmancurtis plz help me 🥺
    You need to modify a few files. It's almost just like the 5059 devices and you can look up the 5041c thread to see what needs edited. Use the fstab.mt6739 from the 5041c.
    1
    Here's the tool. I think some of the links to it got messed up. Make sure you turn on developer options and check that oem unlock is ticked as well as adb usb options. Once in fastboot, issue the following
    Code:
    fastboot oem unlock-go
    Follow the instructions on the device. Then boot into system and complete setup so that you can turn on developer options again since your device was just reset. Boot to fastboot once again and issue these.
    Code:
    fastboot flash recovery ./recovery.img
    Code:
    fastboot oem reboot-recovery
    That should be the custom recovery you just installed. It will be replace on reboot if steps are not taken. I was in the process of working this issue when my beat up a501dl succumbed to its varied and multiple impact injuries. If I can find the time to repair it I will finish where I left off, but in the mean time I will help as much as I can.