Blade A3 Prime (Visible)

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zaduma

Senior Member
Aug 18, 2010
246
24
Indiana, USA
Doing anything listed here will void your warranty. I don't know the laws where you are so assume it makes you a criminal. These things are posted here for educational purposes only. Never follow any guide if you don't understand the commands.

Enough BS, let's jump in.

For windows users. Installing drivers:
1. Plug USB cable into PC.
2. On the A3 prime, instead of using USB as charging, select use USB as Updating Firmware (i forget actual wording)
3. A prompt will come up on Windows, install those drivers.
4. Reboot.

Install adb and fastboot on your PC, it is up to you to do this.
Enable developer options on your phone, and enable USB debugging and OEM Unlocking.

In your CMD/Shell/Whatever you have.
adb reboot bootloader

fastboot flashing unlock (use volume up to confirm)
fastboot flashing unlock_critical (use volume up to confirm)

Congrats you've unlocked the bootloader.

Use 'fastboot reboot' to reboot if you haven't done so already.

-----

this is where the progress on this device comes to a halt.

The kernel source is available from opensource.ztedevices.com

The device codename is Z5157V, the Kernel they have is listed under Z5157V Q(10) Kernel(4.4.185)

What needs to happen next? Someone needs to compile the kernel from source.

Once that is done, they can extract the boot.img from it, use Magisk, and make a modified boot.img

Whoila, they will now have root. Once this person has root, they can extract recovery.img from the device, and we can begin making a custom TWRP, or who knows, maybe Team Win will pick it up (unlikely).

Once we have a custom recovery and working Magisk, it's just a matter of time before we start seeing custom ROMS.

If someone will sign up to be a guinea pig, or has an extra A3 Prime laying around I will continue development. I bricked mine because I was impulsive and honestly, kinda stupid. (browse through thread to see my idiocy)

Until such a time that I come to possess another A3 Prime OR someone steps up to provide a firmware dump, I am unable to help.

Good luck developing!
 
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Syst3ms

New member
Jul 7, 2020
1
0
Only managed to unlock the bootloader but can't seem to find any information on rooting it.
The structure is indeed different than what you would normally expect to find. 'recovery' isn't a valid partition when trying to flash under fastboot for example.
The only reason I'm interested in trying to root this device is because The mtk engineering mode app doesn't work on this phone, at least not the visible version, so band locking doesn't seem possible without root and a different rom.
 

zaduma

Senior Member
Aug 18, 2010
246
24
Indiana, USA
Yeah, I bricked my device by flashing a universal MTK TWRP.

Came here to say this, do not flash universal MTK.

It is a soft brick, bootloops with no access to stock or TWRP recovery.

The phone's model number is Z5157V and the stock firmware is Z5157VV1.0.0B17 for google indexing reasons. Only place that MAY have it is behind a $40 pay wall.
 
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zaduma

Senior Member
Aug 18, 2010
246
24
Indiana, USA
Managed to get the kernel from opensource.ztedevices.com, just beginning to work on it now (not sure how I'm gonna get my phone out of bootloop mode, but I'll solve it later)
 
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zaduma

Senior Member
Aug 18, 2010
246
24
Indiana, USA
I have never compiled a kernel from source, but I'm eager to learn, I have two days in the wilderness planned ahead of me. If anyone would compile the kernel, that is great. If not? I'll get it done when I get back.

Been playing around with the phone and key combinations, I think I have found a way to use SP Flash Tool in it's current soft brick state.

If I am successful in compiling the kernel, I will share it.

If I am able to unbrick this phone, I will write a guide.

If those two things happen, I'll be moving forward to make an AOSP based custom ROM for this phone. Maybe a first for a $100 device, but I like root.

If anyone else knows HOW to compile the kernel, you'd put me a few steps ahead when I get back.

Either way, nearly 200 lurkers on this thread, I hope to have answers soon.
 

zaduma

Senior Member
Aug 18, 2010
246
24
Indiana, USA
why do you think you are first ? their are literally tons of €100 phones in circulation!

Who knows, guess I don't have much experience in this area. (Cheap phones) Figured it's usually not worth it to do all this work for a throwaway phone.

That said, I've been wrong before!
 

s4goa

Senior Member
Nov 25, 2018
82
6
fastboot

dude, in order to avoid fuqqing confusion you ought not abbreviate a shell command like you do.

Anyhow, since we two guys have different phones, it makes sense only for me to generally discuss the rooting strategy on a ZTE Spreadtrum phone, as the specifics will differ too much.

I have fastboot on a Lumigon T3 as my "ZTE blade A5 2019" does not have fastboot.

---------- Post added at 16:07 ---------- Previous post was at 15:55 ----------

rooters, come join https://forum.xda-developers.com/group.php?groupid=1925
 
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zaduma

Senior Member
Aug 18, 2010
246
24
Indiana, USA
dude, in order to avoid fuqqing confusion you ought not abbreviate a shell command like you do.

Anyhow, since we two fuys have different phones, it makes sense only for me to generally discuss the rooting strategy on a ZTE Spreadtrum phone, as the specifics will differ too much.

I have fastboot on a Lumigon T3 as my "ZTE blade A5 2019" does not have fastboot..

---------- Post added at 16:07 ---------- Previous post was at 15:55 ----------

rooters, come join https://forum.xda-developers.com/group.php?groupid=1925

Sorry, for clarity if on Linux type su and your root password, or use sudo to escalate your permissions if you don't have permission to use fastboot as a regular user.

If you're on windows, consider a free upgrade, but also leave out sudo and once in fastboot mode on a3 prime, type
1. (sudo) fastboot flashing unlock
2. (sudo) fastboot flashing unlock_critical

Press volume up when prompted and congrats your warranty is now void, bootloader unlocked. I'm not responsible for your choices.
__________
Also yeah, the phones even have different chipsets the Z5157V is a MTK phone
 

s4goa

Senior Member
Nov 25, 2018
82
6
fastboot

this "orange state unlock bootloader" has - however - nothing or little to do with "Developer Menu option UNLOCK BOOTLOADER"


do you know more about this?


on my Lumigon these 2 unlockings are independent of each other, never mind the identical name "unlock bootloader". :confused:
 

zaduma

Senior Member
Aug 18, 2010
246
24
Indiana, USA
this "orange state unlock bootloader" has - however - nothing or little to do with "Developer Menu option UNLOCK BOOTLOADER"


do you know more about this?


on my Lumigon these 2 unlockings are independent of each other, never mind the identical name "unlock bootloader". :confused:


Yeah, you'll need to toggle that option to on in Developer Settings before entering the bootloader/fastboot mode and running the unlock commands or they will fail.
 

zaduma

Senior Member
Aug 18, 2010
246
24
Indiana, USA
Sorry to anyone following this thread, I will continue working on building the kernel, extracting boot, and getting this phone rooted. I will need a volunteer to test the root solution once it is built, and then if possible follow a few steps and extract recovery.img on your newly rooted device and send that to me.

I just don't have the time today even though I said I would be doing it. If there are any volunteers with an A3 prime let me know!
 
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  • 1
    treble_a64_bv* is arm32 with 64 bit binders, A/B partition layout. That should have been the right one, but maybe we need to get a different one

    treble_a64_bv* is arm32 with 64 bit binders, A/B partition layout. That should have been the right one, but maybe we need to get a different one
    One more item. Treble & VNDK compatible. It is the only GSI type I've been able to flash succesfully until now.

    (Device in fastbootd)
    fastboot --disable-verity --disable-verification --skip-reboot flash system lineage-17.1-20210321-UNOFFICIAL-treble_a64_bvS.img
    Resizing 'system_a' OKAY [ 0.005s]
    Sending sparse 'system_a' 1/5 (262140 KB) OKAY [ 12.963s]
    Writing 'system_a' OKAY [ 2.598s]
    Sending sparse 'system_a' 2/5 (262140 KB) OKAY [ 12.913s]
    Writing 'system_a' OKAY [ 2.647s]
    Sending sparse 'system_a' 3/5 (262140 KB) OKAY [ 12.978s]
    Writing 'system_a' OKAY [ 2.623s]
    Sending sparse 'system_a' 4/5 (262140 KB) OKAY [ 12.967s]
    Writing 'system_a' OKAY [ 2.632s]
    Sending sparse 'system_a' 5/5 (179680 KB) OKAY [ 8.899s]
    Writing 'system_a' OKAY [ 1.960s]
    Finished. Total time: 73.201s

    GIS success. Hooah!

    Problem is no camera, no network, no sound and not sure what else. This is all on the Visible OEM firmware. Will check with the Treble & VNDK GSI.

    Update: Also not working:
    adb reboot fastboot
    error: insufficient permissions for device: missing udev rules? user is in the plugdev group
    See [http://developer.android.com/tools/device.html] for more information
    1
    UPDATE:

    I am delighted to report that the GSI system-roar-arm32_binder64-ab-vndklite-vanilla.img is working on the Visible OEM firmware just the same as with the Yahoo version. This GSI is much more functional on the Blade A3 Prime than the lineage version. Note that as of this writing Magisk is not functioning in both the Yahoo and Visible ROMs. However, one thing to take note of is that Magisk is not at all needed with this image to become root.

    To become root I use the Superuser app which is included with the GSI. The utility will grant superuser access to most apps that request it. It actually works similarly in the same way mtk-easy-su works with Magisk and other apps. Unfortunately, there is something going on with Magisk that Superuser nor mtk-easy-su are able to grant it root access.

    Once Superuser is running on the device you can get root on "adb" via a terminal window on pc as well as in a terminal emulator by typing the below into the console:

    adb root shell
    restarting adbd as root

    adb shell
    phhgsi_a64_ab:/ #

    or

    adb shell

    phhgsi_a64_ab:/ $ su
    :/data/data #

    There you go! Now go get the GSI and flash it on the phone. Use the following link for more info:



    Peace.
    1
    I think Magisk released a new version recently, 22.1. Try to pull the latest stable app from the GitHub repo and repatch the boot image again, it might work this time
    I have the latest but did not patch the GSI boot.img . I have done it on the Visible and could not get it working either the phone ended in bootloop or Magisk will not attain Superuser and the Manager is hidden. I will however, give it another try. I wanted to enjoy the GIS a bit before doing another wipe.
    1
    Wait can you do it on the GSI? I mean, if it uses the same boot image, just try to patch the boot image as is and see if the GSI will boot again. That way you can still enjoy the custom Android you've got running and you'll see results immediately.

    Whatever you're cool with doing though, if you want to wait I totally get it
    I went and did just that as I wanted to see what happens and it left the phone in a bootloop. Now I will re-try on the Yahoo image and after Visible. I am am almost quite certain it will turn out to be the same thing.

    Now there's another thing I've noticed. As you know you can pull an image or whatever file off the phone in adb or you can dd just the same as I've done on this device. Example:

    (Device in Android OS)
    adb pull /dev/block/by-name/boot_a

    or

    dd if=/dev/block/by-name/boot_a of=/sdcard/boot.img (boot_a.img gets copied to the internal storage)

    Though I am Superuser you cannot write the image back as the phone's slot is in read only mode while booted to the Android OS. Example:

    dd if=/sdcard/boot.img of=/dev/block/by-name/boot_a (no permissions - read only file system)

    So this puts limitations on what you can do even though rooted. Perhaps you know of a way to get passed this.
    1
    Yes this phone has root. If you stay on non-custom ROMs then Magisk works great. If you go the Custom Rom/GSI route then you may have some trouble.
    Awesome. Just need/want basic root. Downloaded all needed files. Just haven't wanted to mess with it today. Was up late getting the necessary tools etc. Thanks @jasonmerc 😁
  • 2
    Doing anything listed here will void your warranty. I don't know the laws where you are so assume it makes you a criminal. These things are posted here for educational purposes only. Never follow any guide if you don't understand the commands.

    Enough BS, let's jump in.

    For windows users. Installing drivers:
    1. Plug USB cable into PC.
    2. On the A3 prime, instead of using USB as charging, select use USB as Updating Firmware (i forget actual wording)
    3. A prompt will come up on Windows, install those drivers.
    4. Reboot.

    Install adb and fastboot on your PC, it is up to you to do this.
    Enable developer options on your phone, and enable USB debugging and OEM Unlocking.

    In your CMD/Shell/Whatever you have.
    adb reboot bootloader

    fastboot flashing unlock (use volume up to confirm)
    fastboot flashing unlock_critical (use volume up to confirm)

    Congrats you've unlocked the bootloader.

    Use 'fastboot reboot' to reboot if you haven't done so already.

    -----

    this is where the progress on this device comes to a halt.

    The kernel source is available from opensource.ztedevices.com

    The device codename is Z5157V, the Kernel they have is listed under Z5157V Q(10) Kernel(4.4.185)

    What needs to happen next? Someone needs to compile the kernel from source.

    Once that is done, they can extract the boot.img from it, use Magisk, and make a modified boot.img

    Whoila, they will now have root. Once this person has root, they can extract recovery.img from the device, and we can begin making a custom TWRP, or who knows, maybe Team Win will pick it up (unlikely).

    Once we have a custom recovery and working Magisk, it's just a matter of time before we start seeing custom ROMS.

    If someone will sign up to be a guinea pig, or has an extra A3 Prime laying around I will continue development. I bricked mine because I was impulsive and honestly, kinda stupid. (browse through thread to see my idiocy)

    Until such a time that I come to possess another A3 Prime OR someone steps up to provide a firmware dump, I am unable to help.

    Good luck developing!
    2
    Oh boy! GIS is working. See photos and the image that I used is also attached.
    Congrats!

    Now you have the UNLOCKED free device.

    Congratulations on your courage and attitude to learn, share and trust in @jasonmerc.

    enjoy time and developments........
    :cowboy:
    1
    Yeah, I bricked my device by flashing a universal MTK TWRP.

    Came here to say this, do not flash universal MTK.

    It is a soft brick, bootloops with no access to stock or TWRP recovery.

    The phone's model number is Z5157V and the stock firmware is Z5157VV1.0.0B17 for google indexing reasons. Only place that MAY have it is behind a $40 pay wall.
    1
    Managed to get the kernel from opensource.ztedevices.com, just beginning to work on it now (not sure how I'm gonna get my phone out of bootloop mode, but I'll solve it later)
    1
    Thanks @desilynn79. I got it to work, by doing a format in SPFT and then following your instructions on flashing it
    good deal. im just waiting on my new one, they recieved the old one yesterday so, in theory the new one ships today.
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