Galaxy S4 Active 4.4.2 Kitkat ROOT

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meraz9000

Senior Member
Oct 7, 2011
401
1,099
Hello everyone. It's me again now this time I bring you root access to the new OTA KITKAT for our S4 :eek:

Disclaimer : I'm not responsible if your phone suddenly dies, explodes or your cat catches fire. Be warned.

SOME PEOPLE REPORT MOBILE DATA NOT WORKING AFTER THIS PROCESS SO ALL YOU GOTTA DO IS GO INTO YOUR APN SETTINGS MENU AND DO RESET TO DEFAULT SETTINGS AND WRITE YOUR CARRIERS APN SETTINGS AND IT WILL WORK.

This process has a lot of steps but if you follow them correctly you will end up with stock rooted 4.4.2 kitkat with super user and safestrap

Requirements:

If you already took the update and your system version is 4.4.2 keep reading.

1. Patience
2. Pwned Kitkat OTA Update link
3. Pwnedkernel for 4.3 Download
4. System image from stock 4.3 Tar file Download
5. Safestrap for the Galaxy S4 Active Download
6. Stock 4.4 Kitkat Kernel Download
7. Chainfire's SuperSu.zip Download

First after you finish downloading the stock 4.3 image extract it somewhere you remember and you'll see the following files:
BL_I537UCUBML2_2244695_REV06_user_low_ship_MULTI_CERT.tar
AP_I537UCUBML2_2244695_REV06_user_low_ship_MULTI_CERT.tar
CSC_I537UCUBML2_2244695_REV06_user_low_ship_MULTI_CERT.tar
CP_I537UCUBML2_2244695_REV06_user_low_ship_MULTI_CERT.tar

Put your phone in download mode and fire up odin. Under PDA select and flash

AP_I537UCUBML2_2244695_REV06_user_low_ship_MULTI_CERT.tar

This will downgrade your system back to 4.3 because yes the new kitkat bootloader allows you to flash 4.3 signed firmware. Note: YOU CANNOT DOWNGRADE BOOTLOADER SO DONT ATTEMPT IT

Wait until odin finishes flashing the firmware and when the phone reboots itself put it again in download mode. Now you must flash pwnedkernel.tar.md5 selecting PDA again in ODIN and wait for phone to boot up. If your phone gets stuck in the ATT logo then perform a factory reset .

Once your phone boots up enable USB debugging mode and root it using saferoot or vroot. GOOGLE it and you'll find it...Then you must install safestrap.apk
adb install safestrapactive.apk

Now copy pwnedkitkat.zip and update-Supersu.zip to your SD Card and once that's finished open up safestrap in your device and tap install when that's done tap reboot to recovery.

Now you'll be at the safestrap recovery screen so go ahead and select install zip file.
IMPORTANT : DO NOT DELETE DATA/CACHE OR DO A FACTORY RESET BEFORE FLASHING THE KITKAT.ZIP OTHERWISE YOU'LL HAVE TO START ALL OVER AGAIN.

Install pwnedkitkat.zip and once it finishes go ahead and install update-supersu.zip to enable root access.

AND FINALLY VERY IMPORTANT YOU MUST FLASH THE 4.4.2 STOCK KERNEL IMAGE USING ODIN AND SELECTING PDA OTHERWISE YOUR PHONE WONT BOOT

Wait for your phone to reboot, open up superuser and disable knox security.

Enjoy your rooted 4.4.2 S4 Active.

Credits : hashcode for making safestrap possible and the other amazing developers at XDA that discovered these exploits in the past and special thanks to Samsung for "letting" open these loopholes

If you are in official 4.3 ML2 see my next post.
 

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Last edited:

AndroidState

Senior Member
Mar 17, 2013
885
378
NY
Hello everyone. It's me again now this time I bring you root access to the new OTA KITKAT for our S4 :eek:

Uploading files at the moment....keep in mind that this is not a one click solution and we gonna have to exploit the loooholes courtesy of samsung to get this working..

For now some screenshots..

Thank you! :)
Can't wait. When is the ETA? estimate, 10 minutes?
I just can't wait transforming my S4 to S5! :D

Edit: 40 minutes passed :)
Now it is probably close to me. I can feel it!
THANK YOOOOOOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 
Last edited:
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meraz9000

Senior Member
Oct 7, 2011
401
1,099
If you're currently running 4.3 ML2 official update and you want to upgrade to 4.4.2 but dont want to lose root then keep reading.

In the following steps I'm assuming that you're currently running stock 4.3 Rooted ...see my other guide...and that you didn't modify any system apps otherwise the update will fail and you'll have to restore using the Odin package for 4.3.

1. Download pwnedkitkat.zip from 1st post.
2. If you dont have safetrap installed then you must download it and install it.
3. Copy pwnedkitat.zip and update-superuser.zip to your sdcard
4. Restart your phone in safestrap recovery and install pwnedkitkat.zip and when it's done flashing install superuser.zip.
WARNING : DO NOT PERFORM A FACTORY RESET BEFORE FLASHING THE ZIP. THIS IS A MODIFIED OFFICIAL UPDATE SO ONLY SYSTEM FILES WILL BE UPDATED. YOUR DATA WILL BE UNTOUCHED.

5.Put your phone in download mode and flash the 4.4.2 stock boot.tar.md5 kernel and your phone will boot after a few minutes with root access enabled.

Enjoy.
 
Last edited:

ki11bert

Senior Member
Jul 17, 2011
139
19
I took the ATT 4.4 ota. Can I still perform this method? You discussed the 4.3 to 4.4 method but not from 4.4 to 4.4 rooted. Thank you!

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I537 using Tapatalk


EDIT: I reread your post and it looks like the instructions are assuming you took 4.4 already. Correct me if I'm wrong. Thank you.
 
Last edited:

Xanthos58

Senior Member
Mar 24, 2014
179
18
Followed procedure from root ML2, and now the screen is just at the boot animation with blue led for about 5 minutes now, i messed up, need the 4.4.2 odin files
 
Last edited:

mtrezza18

New member
Apr 18, 2014
1
0
help

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
hey I tried doing your root method after updating to 4.4.2 and after I flash the pwned file with odin everything goes fine but my usb debugging will not com up at all so I cant even root and im stuck with android version 4.3 but my baseband version is i537ucucn9 and that's 4.4.2 and nothing works no wifi no data no calls no nothing could you help or point me to anything cause I cant even use my phone. Thanks
 

rdh28

Member
Sep 7, 2013
31
5
You guys should try flashing the 4.3 Odin package and starting from there. I know I have a lot of modified system apps, so I'm likely going to re flash 4.3 just to make sure I'm stock. Thanks again sunderwear!! Good luck rooting everyone. I'll post back with an update in a bit!!

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I537 using XDA Premium 4 mobile app
 

akjimbo

New member
Jul 8, 2013
2
1
Kansas City
what about us 4.2.2 stock rooted users?

I'm sure most S4 Active owners are still on 4.2.2 rooted. What is the best procedure for us?

Should i unroot my phone via SuperSU then accept the stock 4.4.2 OTA update, then follow the method in the OP?
Or can i leave it rooted and flash stock 4.4.2 via Odin and then follow the OP?
 
Last edited:
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jkeuclid

Senior Member
Mar 19, 2014
508
112
I'm sure most S4 Active owners are still on 4.2.2 rooted. What is the best procedure for us?

Should i unroot my phone via SuperSU then accept the stock 4.4.2 OTA update, then follow the method in the OP?
Or can i leave it rooted and flash stock 4.4.2 via Odin and then follow the OP?
I was in a similar position with being rooted on 4.3 ML2 (Sunderwear's method). I unrooted thru SuperSU, unfroze everything under TiBU, unchecked every module under xposed framework, reboot phone then proceeded to uninstall all my root apps. I then did a factory reset, then I flashed back to the stock 4.3 under ODIN and following that I took the 4.4.2 OTA successfully.

In the end it's up to you, but IMHO I consider it wise to begin anew with a fresh clean phone.
 
Last edited:
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tet1

Senior Member
May 9, 2013
143
30
sunderwear thank you I downloaded it kitkat zip file. I flashed it with safestrap and then I flashed suprSu then I reboot the phone won't boot ... I flushed with Odin the kernel 4.4.2 every things works greats

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I537 using xda app-developers app
 
Last edited:

meraz9000

Senior Member
Oct 7, 2011
401
1,099
sunderwear thank you I downloaded it kikat zip file I flashed it with safestrap and the I flashed supruser I reboot my phone won't boot then I flushed with Odin the kernel 4.4.2 very things works greats

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I537 using xda app-developers app

Glad to hear it worked for you. REMEMBER EVERYONE YOU MUST FLASH THE KITKAT KERNEL AFTER FLASHING the kitkat.zip update.
 
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tet1

Senior Member
May 9, 2013
143
30
I was on ML2 with root .. and I did the stapes above

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I537 using xda app-developers app
 

Xanthos58

Senior Member
Mar 24, 2014
179
18
So I can't lock the screen no matter what it is set to. Any way to fix?

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I537 using XDA Premium 4 mobile app
 
Last edited:

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  • 31
    Hello everyone. It's me again now this time I bring you root access to the new OTA KITKAT for our S4 :eek:

    Disclaimer : I'm not responsible if your phone suddenly dies, explodes or your cat catches fire. Be warned.

    SOME PEOPLE REPORT MOBILE DATA NOT WORKING AFTER THIS PROCESS SO ALL YOU GOTTA DO IS GO INTO YOUR APN SETTINGS MENU AND DO RESET TO DEFAULT SETTINGS AND WRITE YOUR CARRIERS APN SETTINGS AND IT WILL WORK.

    This process has a lot of steps but if you follow them correctly you will end up with stock rooted 4.4.2 kitkat with super user and safestrap

    Requirements:

    If you already took the update and your system version is 4.4.2 keep reading.

    1. Patience
    2. Pwned Kitkat OTA Update link
    3. Pwnedkernel for 4.3 Download
    4. System image from stock 4.3 Tar file Download
    5. Safestrap for the Galaxy S4 Active Download
    6. Stock 4.4 Kitkat Kernel Download
    7. Chainfire's SuperSu.zip Download

    First after you finish downloading the stock 4.3 image extract it somewhere you remember and you'll see the following files:
    BL_I537UCUBML2_2244695_REV06_user_low_ship_MULTI_CERT.tar
    AP_I537UCUBML2_2244695_REV06_user_low_ship_MULTI_CERT.tar
    CSC_I537UCUBML2_2244695_REV06_user_low_ship_MULTI_CERT.tar
    CP_I537UCUBML2_2244695_REV06_user_low_ship_MULTI_CERT.tar

    Put your phone in download mode and fire up odin. Under PDA select and flash

    AP_I537UCUBML2_2244695_REV06_user_low_ship_MULTI_CERT.tar

    This will downgrade your system back to 4.3 because yes the new kitkat bootloader allows you to flash 4.3 signed firmware. Note: YOU CANNOT DOWNGRADE BOOTLOADER SO DONT ATTEMPT IT

    Wait until odin finishes flashing the firmware and when the phone reboots itself put it again in download mode. Now you must flash pwnedkernel.tar.md5 selecting PDA again in ODIN and wait for phone to boot up. If your phone gets stuck in the ATT logo then perform a factory reset .

    Once your phone boots up enable USB debugging mode and root it using saferoot or vroot. GOOGLE it and you'll find it...Then you must install safestrap.apk
    adb install safestrapactive.apk

    Now copy pwnedkitkat.zip and update-Supersu.zip to your SD Card and once that's finished open up safestrap in your device and tap install when that's done tap reboot to recovery.

    Now you'll be at the safestrap recovery screen so go ahead and select install zip file.
    IMPORTANT : DO NOT DELETE DATA/CACHE OR DO A FACTORY RESET BEFORE FLASHING THE KITKAT.ZIP OTHERWISE YOU'LL HAVE TO START ALL OVER AGAIN.

    Install pwnedkitkat.zip and once it finishes go ahead and install update-supersu.zip to enable root access.

    AND FINALLY VERY IMPORTANT YOU MUST FLASH THE 4.4.2 STOCK KERNEL IMAGE USING ODIN AND SELECTING PDA OTHERWISE YOUR PHONE WONT BOOT

    Wait for your phone to reboot, open up superuser and disable knox security.

    Enjoy your rooted 4.4.2 S4 Active.

    Credits : hashcode for making safestrap possible and the other amazing developers at XDA that discovered these exploits in the past and special thanks to Samsung for "letting" open these loopholes

    If you are in official 4.3 ML2 see my next post.
    8
    If you're currently running 4.3 ML2 official update and you want to upgrade to 4.4.2 but dont want to lose root then keep reading.

    In the following steps I'm assuming that you're currently running stock 4.3 Rooted ...see my other guide...and that you didn't modify any system apps otherwise the update will fail and you'll have to restore using the Odin package for 4.3.

    1. Download pwnedkitkat.zip from 1st post.
    2. If you dont have safetrap installed then you must download it and install it.
    3. Copy pwnedkitat.zip and update-superuser.zip to your sdcard
    4. Restart your phone in safestrap recovery and install pwnedkitkat.zip and when it's done flashing install superuser.zip.
    WARNING : DO NOT PERFORM A FACTORY RESET BEFORE FLASHING THE ZIP. THIS IS A MODIFIED OFFICIAL UPDATE SO ONLY SYSTEM FILES WILL BE UPDATED. YOUR DATA WILL BE UNTOUCHED.

    5.Put your phone in download mode and flash the 4.4.2 stock boot.tar.md5 kernel and your phone will boot after a few minutes with root access enabled.

    Enjoy.
    3
    Thank you! :)
    Can't wait. When is the ETA? estimate, 10 minutes?
    I just can't wait transforming my S4 to S5! :D

    Edit: 40 minutes passed :)
    Now it is probably close to me. I can feel it!
    THANK YOOOOOOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Done writing a quick messy guide. If you have any questions let me know. Enjoy:laugh:
    3
    @Sunderwear I have modded your pawned kitkat ota to include several features. 1 init.d support using modded init.qcom.post_boot.sh
    2. External Sd write capability by modding platform.xml. 3 Added set perms to su in updater. 4.Added LCD and Helvetica fonts to system/app from the Htc One. There is a few other things also,but brain is.going blank right now. Everything running perfect for me. If anyone has a problem during install with su perms ive attached the updater without those sets. I have not tested su set perms,as I booted before adding them. everything else works. Next I will give you fixed hub and IME these are proving to be tricky to fix. Stay Tuned!!!!!!

    Links....
    Modded KitKat pawned ota
    http://d-h.st/77V

    Original updater minus set perms for SU
    http://d-h.st/L5S

    ############################################################# Modded file only
    init.qcom.post_boot.sh modded to add init.d support/move to system/etc.Change it's permissions to 755/rwx-rx-rx
    http://d-h.st/dlJ

    platform.xml modded to add write to external SD/move to system/etc/permissions. Change it's permissions to 755/rwx-rx-rx
    http://d-h.st/1Cq

    When adding init.d folder to etc. Perms must be set to 755 for etc/init.d and whatever scripts you add to init.d folder.
    See below photo for proper perm set!
    3
    Well, I was about to do the procedure in post 3 ( Because I am currently running on 4.3 ML2 Root) but I started to read a little more and found out about towelroot. So how do i go about this? Do I need the official 4.4.2 update,if so, how do i go from rooted 4.3 to official 4.4.2?
    Also, my phone has been pestering me about updating my firmware to the latest. Do I accept it? (Can I accept it?) Or can I just Flash the 4.4.2 and towel root it from there?

    Since you're already rooted, you need to flash the entire ML2 firmware package with Odin. Once you're on stock ML2, you need to download the ML2 to NE3 OTA cfg file and rename it to "update.zip". Then you need to go into stock recovery on your phone and select apply update. Once all that is done, boot up your phone, go to towelroot.com in your phone's browser, download the apk and run it.

    These are very basic instructions, but once you've completed this you will be on the latest stock firmware with root. If you have any other questions, read through the discussions on ML2 and NE3, all the answers are there, including exactly how to install everything. If you're looking for links to firmware and root methods, check the OP in the i537 Firmware Thread.
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