How to carrier/SIM unlock the Galaxy Tab [Updated Dec 5 2010]

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Aug 6, 2017
So I tried both of these methods, but neither worked. The "nv_data.bin" file is there, but not the .md5 version of it and when I open nv_data.bin with a hex editor it is empty, even with full permissions. Any help? My model number is: SM-T217S.



Dec 23, 2013
hi i read through your post and i would like to request some help please. I have a galaxy tab s4 it is sim locked to t-mobile. can you please help with instructions for sim unlocking it. i cant speak to t mobile as i am out side the us. Any help will be appreciated


Dec 23, 2013
hi i have a Galaxy Tab SM -T837T locked to T-mobile. I tried to root using z4root but it didnt work. How would you suggest i root it ? I want to try to unlock it

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    Background: I unlocked my Tab first by hex editing my nv_data.bin file. It was perfect, my IMEI and device serial number were unharmed. Then I got my official unlock code from Tmobile. So I reverted to my original nv_data.bin, placed an AT&T SIM into the Tab and it rebooted, I entered the code, unlocked the Tab, then compared the original file to the newly unlocked file. Very minor changes. I wrote a program to do the modification and the resulting nv_data.bin file worked fine.

    To clarify, I have a T-Mobile Tab and you must have rooted in order to do this.
    I also have an AT&T tab and the same procedure works.
    It also works on any GSM model.

    Heres the edit points for those of you comfy with a hex editor:

    0x181469 change this one byte from 01 to 00
    0x18150e change this one byte to 00 if its not already

    If you're going to do this, please back up your /efs folder! Do it twice even :) Save your backups for at least 11.5 years.

    I just edit a copy of the nv_data.bin, then delete nv_data.bin and nv_data.bin.md5 in the phones /efs folder using Root Explorer, then copy my modified file back to the folder, then reboot. The nv_data.bin.md5 will be automatically regenerated for you.

    I've even edited a copy of the file right on my Tab using the Hexeditor in the Market.

    FYI, you can not swap nv_data.bin files from one phone to another, you get the bogus IMEI number as the file doesn't match the hardware IMEI number.

    UPDATE: New easier way that doesn't involve learning how to hex edit :)

    This requires you to be rooted and have busybox installed, which you should have but you can grab busybox installer from the market if not.

    Backup the contents of the /efs folder on the phone first!!! Save your backups for at least 11.5 years.

    From your computer, open an adb shell to your phone with the command:

    adb shell

    Then paste all the following commands into the shell window at once, in other words, one big cut n paste:

    cd /sdcard
    echo "this takes about 45 seconds"
    if [ ! -f /sdcard/nv_data.bin.orig ]; then
      echo "copying file to /sdcard"
      cp /efs/nv_data.bin /sdcard/nv_data.bin.orig
    echo -en \\x00 > out0
    dd if=nv_data.bin.orig of=out1 bs=1 count=1578089
    dd if=nv_data.bin.orig of=out2 bs=1 skip=1578090 count=163
    dd if=nv_data.bin.orig of=out3 bs=1 skip=1578254 
    cat out1 out0 out2 out0 out3 > nv_data.bin.unlocked
    rm out0 out1 out2 out3
    rm /efs/nv_data.bin
    cp nv_data.bin.unlocked /efs/nv_data.bin
    rm /efs/nv_data.bin.md5

    Wait 45 seconds for the whole process to complete.
    Thats It! your phone will reboot and its carrier unlocked!

    If you can't get internet access with your new SIM its because you haven't set the APN for this carrier. For the settings you need, Google "APN setting your_carriers_name_here" and put those settings in
    Settings->Wireless->Mobile Networks->Access Point Names and then select it. Done!
    0x18150e change this one byte from 01 to 00

    On my pristine T-Mo US tab this one is already 00. Are you sure you haven't accidentally swapped the values?

    I just double checked, and its correct for my files. So theres a good chance this may not work for you (or anyone else) until we can compare more files.
    So if I follow these steps on my t-mobile tab, and then I insert my att sim, I'll be getting edge with it, right?

    Sent from my SGH-T849 using XDA App

    Yes indeed.
    It works! I did make all changes except the one at 0x18150e, that is:
    0x180069 to 0x1800ce: change all these bytes from the values they are to ff
    0x181469: change this one byte from 01 to 00
    0x18150e: left this byte at 00

    This unlocked my tab, I just sent me a text message with a German SIM card.
    Sorry for the attached :'>. I was in frustration thinking I did something wrong with the command and the original file is too big. I actually resized it 4 times. What do you mean by "didn't get the last carriage return in there when you pasted the script"? Is it that I have to enter after I paste your script? When I pasted it, automatically there was processing going on. I did not have to wait just 1 sec. Or did you mean I have to enter after ######?
    The T-mobile Sim I have now is the only one from different carrier besides the ATT original. I just bought this 250MB data prepaid SIM for T-mob tab from T-mobile shop in order to test this. But I still cannot access the net :(

    "Accessing the net" is not something you can fix by SIM unlocking the Tab. All this procedure does is to allow you to boot the Tab with a different carriers SIM card installed and bypass the lock screen that would prevent you from even using the T-Mobile SIM.

    Before you do anything else, you need to describe what you can and can't do with clarity.

    If you insert the T-Mobile SIM card and then turn on the Tab, does it boot to the home screen or a black screen that prompts you for an unlock code?