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Samsung Galaxy A41 - no XDA-Forum, no Community, no Custom ROMs

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F308

Senior Member
Feb 25, 2013
385
61
EU
Thank you.
In the meantime I found that 'mount --bind' works with files if target file exists.
I didn't know it until now.
 

Akhil99

Senior Member
Oct 6, 2015
157
216
Mysore
What's the deal with the Samsung Galaxy A41?

For reference:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samsung_Galaxy_A41
https://www.samsung.com/A41

👉 There is no XDA-Forum for this smartphone
👉 There also seems to be no community for this phone.
👉 Searching the internet for A41 compatible Custom ROMs ends in less than nothingness even in the darkest corners.

What's going on? The phone is on the market since March 2020. The phone is pretty good in specs (middle-class).
AND it is the ONLY phone under 200 bucks today that is NOT larger than 150mm in length and therefor usable in pockets.

I don't get it why it doesn't get the same attention as the other competitors in the same price class.

Can anybody enlighten me what's happening?
Please XDA mods and admins, if this is just a mistake, please open a samsung forum for the A41!
Hello to everyone looking for support for the Galaxy A41.
I am pleased to inform that I and Aya have been able to unlock bootloader, patch vbmeta and get basic TWRP booted on the SM-A415F Mediatek.
{Mod edit}
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Hello to everyone looking for support for the Galaxy A41.
I am pleased to inform that I and Aya have been able to unlock bootloader, patch vbmeta and get basic TWRP booted on the SM-A415F Mediatek.
{Mod edit}
@Akhil99
As an exemption from the last bullet of rule no. 5 of the XDA Forum Rules, we grant only developers the privilege to share references to their social media in their own development threads. These conditions obviously don't apply to your post, you or this thread. For this reason I've removed the reference to Telegram. Please refrain from sharing of social media links or attempts to drag members to them in future. Thanks for your cooperation!

Regards
Oswald Boelcke
Senior Moderator
 
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F308

Senior Member
Feb 25, 2013
385
61
EU
/optics/configs/carriers/<3-letter-csc>/conf/cscfeature.xml

Decode the XML with OmcTextDecoder. No need to reencode before using it back on the phone.

I copied all the files from that directory, modified the XML, and overridden the original directory with a basic Magisk module.
Do you remember me?
I have a question.
Partially related to thread.
Hence you knew how to enable native call recording maybe you know how to enable native screen recording in Android 11.
I was looking around, but didn't find anything interesting.
 

hkjo

Senior Member
Mar 24, 2013
88
14
@F308

Yes, I still remember. :)

No idea about the screen recorder.
But aren't there tools in the store?
 

F308

Senior Member
Feb 25, 2013
385
61
EU
Well.
In the meantime I came to the same conclusion.
Still would prefer native to avoid overkill but anything working will be ok.
Thank you for quick reply.
 

mesteri7

Member
Sep 19, 2021
6
0
Dear all, here is the way to Unlock the bootloader, in details that are comprehensible even for a complete beginner, as myself :) This surely worked perfectly for me.

Unlocking Bootloader of Galaxy A41
1. First you Enable developer options in Settings/About phone/Software information by tapping 7 times on the build number.
Unlocking the bootloader on modern Samsung devices have some caveats. The newly introduced VaultKeeper service will make the bootloader reject any unofficial partitions in some circumstances.

2. Allow bootloader unlocking in Developer options → OEM unlocking
2.1. Reboot to download mode by doing this: power off your device and press the download mode key combo VOL UP+VOL DOWN, connect to PC while pressing the buttons. Warning will come about custom OS. (Usually to continue to Odin mode, you Press Vol up but here: )
2.2. to continue> Long press volume up to unlock the bootloader. This will wipe your data and automatically reboot. Press VOL UP to confirm
2.3. Go through the initial setup. Skip through all the steps since data will be wiped again in later steps. Connect the device to Internet during the setup.

Enable developer options, and confirm that the OEM unlocking option exists and is grayed out. This means the VaultKeeper service has unleashed the bootloader. If grayed out option is not there, get it back with method which you find if you search for „How to Fix Missing OEM Unlock in Developer Options on Samsung Phones” (the one which says to change date/time and disable some automatic actions the phone does, etc. ).
Your bootloader now accepts unofficial images in download mode
3. Go to download mode > pres VOL UP+VOL DOWN simulataneously and while holding, connect phone to PC
to continue: VOL UP
to simply exit download mode, press VOL DOWN+power button for 7 sec
Check if the bootloader is unlocked. At this point your oem lock shall be indicating> OEM LOCK: OFF (U) (If it is still locked, it will say OEM LOCK: ON (U).
 
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mesteri7

Member
Sep 19, 2021
6
0
The good news is that basic TWRP for A41 was already created by @Akhil99 . -Cheers to Akhil!!- Who can help create the final stable version? The phone could enter and fully use TWRP but one could not launch Android from it. We got stuck trying to modify/exchange fstab in the boot.img. I have the phone, Akhil has the knowledge! :) However maybe the simple issue of Odin version described in next message could help solve it all? @F308 @hkjo @Minuz
 
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mesteri7

Member
Sep 19, 2021
6
0
At this point I try to root the phone. I applied the methods described here earlier to Android 11 and had no success. I use Odin v3.14.4. and Magisk v.23.0, patching the full 5Gb AP from the newest samsung stock software. Also tried patching only the boot.img.
Maybe I should do it all using Android 10 like @F308 described and after the root upgrade to Android 11... Any tip would be much appreciated.

However, maybe the problem for not being able to finish creating stable TWRP and rooting the phone is because of Odin? @Zirila said that all versions 3.14.4 are fake... Made me think... Has anyone a link to a "not fake" version of Odin?
also: which odin3 version did you use? 99% floating around are fake and malicious, all these 3.14.4 verisons are fake.
 
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F308

Senior Member
Feb 25, 2013
385
61
EU
Well.
I used Odin v3.14.4 all the time, don't remember from where.
To identify it I provide MD5SUM:
50860de40988969f3ea3f308c6143e1d Odin3_v3.14.4.exe
 
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mesteri7

Member
Sep 19, 2021
6
0
Well.
I used Odin v3.14.4 all the time, don't remember from where.
To identify it I provide MD5SUM:
50860de40988969f3ea3f308c6143e1d Odin3_v3.14.4.exe
Thanks a lot, @F308 . I found out that the one I used had different parameters! Maybe that was causing my problems! Now I downloaded another Odin and made sure it is the same as you used. I will repeat all my previous efforts but now using "your version" of Odin. :)
 

mesteri7

Member
Sep 19, 2021
6
0
Well.
I used Odin v3.14.4 all the time, don't remember from where.
To identify it I provide MD5SUM:
50860de40988969f3ea3f308c6143e1d Odin3_v3.14.4.exe
I tried to root my A41 so I wanted to do it the exact way you did, to be able to root it.
I downloaded the same samsung sowftware (Android 10) you used first, I obtained the same Odin version you used but still cannot successfully flash the patched AP.
I flashed all: BL + complete AP patched by the latest Magisk app from Play store + CP+ CSC. Which version of Magisk did you use? Did you flash all categories or only the patched AP?
 

F308

Senior Member
Feb 25, 2013
385
61
EU
I followed instructions from:

There is said that you flash everything.
At this moment I used Magisk 22 and I had Android 10.
Pretty soon version magisk 23 and Android 11 appeared.
I patched the same way AP from Android 11 and flashed everything except CSC again.
Instead CSC I flashed CSC_HOME to keep my data on phone.
So far so good.
 
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F308

Senior Member
Feb 25, 2013
385
61
EU
As I remember now I rooted A41 second time.
This time I am sure it was Magisk 23 and Android 11.
You had to make a mistake somewhere along the way.
My Android is XEO, btw.
I suggest to slow down and read John Wu instructions once more.
Not one time I missed significant point while reading too fast.
 
Last edited:

mesteri7

Member
Sep 19, 2021
6
0
As I remember now I rooted A41 second time.
This time I am sure it was Magisk 23 and Android 11.
You had to make a mistake somewhere along the way.
My Android is XEO, btw.
I suggest to slow down and read John Wu instructions once more.
Not one time I missed significant point while reading too fast.
Thanks!! I will read all carefully. Actually, it will be the first time I read from John Wu, because previously I followed instructions from other source. I truly hope the reason for fails is not the custom kernel that I already have on the phone.
 

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  • 1
    Well.
    I used Odin v3.14.4 all the time, don't remember from where.
    To identify it I provide MD5SUM:
    50860de40988969f3ea3f308c6143e1d Odin3_v3.14.4.exe
    1
    I may could help developing for this device but I need a partner
    So, if there is someone out there to help me with it
    then I'll try to make something for it
    1
    I followed instructions from:

    There is said that you flash everything.
    At this moment I used Magisk 22 and I had Android 10.
    Pretty soon version magisk 23 and Android 11 appeared.
    I patched the same way AP from Android 11 and flashed everything except CSC again.
    Instead CSC I flashed CSC_HOME to keep my data on phone.
    So far so good.
  • 8
    What's the deal with the Samsung Galaxy A41?

    For reference:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samsung_Galaxy_A41
    https://www.samsung.com/A41

    👉 There is no XDA-Forum for this smartphone
    👉 There also seems to be no community for this phone.
    👉 Searching the internet for A41 compatible Custom ROMs ends in less than nothingness even in the darkest corners.

    What's going on? The phone is on the market since March 2020. The phone is pretty good in specs (middle-class).
    AND it is the ONLY phone under 200 bucks today that is NOT larger than 150mm in length and therefor usable in pockets.

    I don't get it why it doesn't get the same attention as the other competitors in the same price class.

    Can anybody enlighten me what's happening?
    Please XDA mods and admins, if this is just a mistake, please open a samsung forum for the A41!
    2
    I bought a new Galaxy A41 for 180€ and I'm just setting it up.
    I want to share my thoughts so far about:
    the hardware, the software, things like rooting.

    The Installation and Software:
    The phone starts and already wants to trick you into signing data collection agreements (Terms of Service (not optional), marketing, analytics, 3rd party shares (3 optional)).
    If you select by common sense and only check ToS you'll get fooled when you check the last radio button which says "I've read all of the above and agree (..)" which enabled all optional radio buttons again right before you click next. What a dirty play.
    Also it is not possible to skip the WiFi selection screen ("skip" is greyed out) making it impossible to setup the phone without internet access. This has nothing to do with FRP, this is before anything google related is setup. Samsung clearly states it requires internet to setup the phone and install necessary provider software. Once it gets internet it gets activated and the "skip" option becomes clickable after the next factory reset. This practice makes me really angry. It's obviously the price you pay when you buy a low- to mid-range class phone - you'll pay the rest with your personal data.
    I setup the phone without creating google and samsung accounts (I never got one of these anyways) and got to the home screen. If you havent enabled WiFi yet, there aren't many apps at all pre-installed, just a few useful and a few bloatware apps (like Facebook, MS Office, etc).
    If you give it WiFi however, it kinda explodes with leeching, loading and updating Apps you never asked for. Only some of these can be "disabled" and only some of them can be "uninstalled" the normal way. Some of the unwanted you can't uninstall nor disable. (This is where you wish you had root access)
    The phone had Security Patch Level installed from August 2020. Making OTA firmware updates 3x (about 1-3gb) will get you to Sec.Patch Level November 2020 which is the latest available OTA (we have February 2021 now). That's not a good sign IMO.. so it's already a few month behind the patch cycle..
    So, software wise there aren't many useful apps for me installed, really just the utter basics and much more 3rd party bloatware and Samsung nonsense apps. It's not as much as with the Poco X3, but still much...

    The Hardware:
    The super amoled display is the biggest feature of the phone. and it's really great, the colors, the viewing angle, the brightness.. all top notch.
    Battery is with only 3500mA/h not that big, but it's astonishing strong and it holds up the uptime it promises so far. I can only hope it stays like that even after a few years.
    The size of the phone is what actually made me buy this phone. its the only phone under 6.5" under 200€ and not older than a year. all newer phones are bigger. The size is great, it's slim, but long. (6,1" ~15cm long)
    I didn't expect it to be that heavy, though. well, the weight is not really heavy, but compared to older phones it is a good bit heavier.
    The Camera is just Mediocre, I already knew this from reviews before but playing around with it and seeing the results underscores it. The final pics alltogether look always a bit washen out if you zoom in. There aren't enough professional advanced settings in the camera settings compared to open camera or mx camera. you have to stick with what you get. The Sensor of the camera is despite 48mpixels only mediocre. the widescreen lens is a nice feature but quality wise not that good either. Selfie cam is subjectively good enough though.
    HDR setting and results are a joke compared to mx camera.

    Rooting:
    I actually planned to root the phone with magisk and installing TWRP. However, I ended up not rooting or installing TWRP at all. The reasons are various.
    First, It's possible to unlock the bootloader in developer settings (after the phone called home..). You'll get a nagscreen every time you boot the phone up after it's unlocked. From this point on you might be able to root the phone with Magisk (following the advices a few posts above), but it'll probably trigger and brick KNOX status.
    I decided to NOT do that and relocked the bootloader, because there seems to be no lively community for this phone, there are no Custom ROMs available nor any custom bootloaders. And I might want to sell the phone again if it doesn't fit my likings and that'll be more difficult with broken KNOX status. Also that way I can get OTA stock updates as long as the phone is supported.
    There is also no supported version of TWRP for the A41. And TWRP on phones like this is tricky as you can read at the A40 TWRP page: TWRP A40 read chapter "This device uses system-as-root in an A-only partition configuration." Also the device is using File Based Encryption and not Full Disc Encryption. I don't know if TWRP works with that environment at all yet.
    So currently the only benefits of getting root would be to be able to completely uninstall some bloatware. The rest (firewall, adblocker, backups, etc) is pretty much possible without root access.
    I really hope this phone is able to get custom ROMs and community in the future, though.


    Hi all!

    I have one of these since a couple of days and I have to say it is a really nice phone with a really bad issue: the jpg compression is super aggressive
    and photos that should look great given the lens and sensor look bland and smudgy. As far as I understand, there is no camera api2 exposed at all by default. All camera apps that I have tried produce worse images and gcam does not work (I have tried about 20 different ones, for Mediatek and otherwise). If Samsung could just let me bump up JPEG quality to 95% I would be completely satisfied with this phone, but I guess that would never happen.

    I therefore wonder, is there any chance that your success rooting the phone could lead to bumping up the JPEG quality of the stock camera app, eventually expose camera api2 or somehow allow us to install a version of gcam down the line?

    Cheers!

    I exactly know what you mean as I watch the pics I just made with the same phone. I don't know if you could change anything in this regard after rooting but it actually looks to me like it's rather the built in camera sensor that makes the quality not that good and not so much the jpeg compression. It doesn't really look like jpeg artifacts, it's more like a washen out painting. I doubt you'll get anything better by rooting the phone, but thats just guessing. Also: did you check out the Image format options? "4:3" vs "4:3 48mpixels"?
    2
    Got the phone yesterday (about 120$) and got it rooted with Odin and Magisk took a little back and forward.. been a while sines I have been on Samsung phone.

    I like this small cheap compact phone, tired of the big bricks.
    Was installing from a new phone with latest update from Samsung.

    So wrote a small guide to help out..

    Everything on phone will get wiped/factory reset , so take backup , you have been warned.
    Take no responsibility of brick etc. (or typos!)
    !PLEASE CHECK WHAT VERSION PHONE YOU HAVE MINE IS SM-A415F AND THE GUIDE WAS WRITTEN FOR THAT PHONE!


    Quick guide:
    1* On PC or phone download you stock firmware for you region: https://samfw.com/firmware/SM-A415F
    My was NEE witch is Nordic Europe.
    Unpack or Transfer the AP_* file to you phone, i used microsd so didn't unpack on phone.
    (sd card need to be exFAT , you can format to that in Windows, so it cant handle big files over ~4GB)

    2* Install lates Magisk manager from https://github.com/topjohnwu/Magisk/releases/latest (Used v22.0) on phone.
    Install Magisk patch the AP_* file from before
    Transfer it back to PC, we will use this later!

    3* Start phone, (if new phone don't bother sign in google/samsung etc.. it will all be wiped/factory reset!)
    Enable Developer mode:
    Setting, about device tag 7 times on Build..
    (If its not shown connect to the internet and wait ~5min..)
    Check "OEM unlocking" , "USB debugging".

    4* Turn off the phone, press volume +/- while you connect PC to Phone with USB-C.
    When screen "WARNING...Custom OS can cause problems.." press and hold Volume +, and press Volume + to confirm what you are doing!
    Let it reboot.

    5* Enable Developer mode:
    Setting, about device tag 7 times on Build..
    (If its not shown connect to the internet and wait ~5min..)
    Check to see if "OEM unlocking" is greyed out enabled , check enable"USB debugging".

    6* Turn off the phone, press volume +/- while you connect PC to Phone with USB-C.
    Press Volume +(don't hold like last time.)

    7* On PC open latest Odin (used v3.14.4) from https://odindownloader.com/ (no sure it that the official site but what i used, please let me know if there is a better one.)
    Unpack the folder to your PC hard drive and start Odin3*.exe, uncheck "Auto reboot" make sure "F.Reset Time" is checked.
    Use the original firmware files from (1*) "BL, CP, CSC" BUT the AP_* that you transferred from Phone.

    Press start and hopefully you will get a "<OSM> All threads completed. (succeed 1 / failed 0)" when it's done!
    Restart phone.

    I had to download magisk and install it again but everything seems to be working..

    Cheers
    1
    yepp - I have such an 'outbreak of hell' product - still struggling to root this beast. 90% of the references in the i-net are fake/copied from other Axx or just bla-bla.
    Up to now odin (different versions) seems only to be able to flash Samsung CRAPROM (needed it several times after ended bricked)
    - magisk patched boot img not working/ending up in boot-loop,
    - magisk patching AP dies before finishing (img is 3.5GB instead 4GB)

    Samsung - not a success story
    1
    2* Install lates Magisk manager from https://github.com/topjohnwu/Magisk/releases/latest (Used v22.0) on phone.
    Concerning the above.
    Would you kindly tell what stub-release.apk visible there is for?
    Is it needed?

    I've recently bought A41 and root access is what I miss a lot in it.
    I rooted phones in the past then I have some experience which caused that related questions came to my mind.
    If anyone can answer them it would be for use for me and others.
    Those are, maybe obsolete but better to be on the safe side.

    Question Zero:
    Is the rooting possible to revert?
    This probably affects warranty AFAIK then it would be good to have way back to original state.

    1. What about certificates?
    Past in time there was TA partition which had to be preserved before unlocking bootloader.

    2. How it is with updates after rooting, eventually how to stay safe when Android 11 comes what is expected in the middle of the year?

    Thank you in advance.

    #----------------------
    Added 2 days later.

    With a bit of fear I succeeded to root my phone.
    Software version was A415FXXU1BUA1.
    (https://samfw.com/firmware/SM-A415F/PLS)
    I
    have problem with SafetyNet status, though, see picture.
    Should I worry?

    Concerning point 2 I found sort of answer.
    AP_* should be patched again before flashing.

    #------------------
    As long as it will be possible to edit this post I will inform you about my adventure with rooting by using Magisk.

    Today I installed Xposed and NFC active over locked screen modules for Magisk and went into bootloop. Not sure which of them was guilty.
    I flashed patched software once more and observed that I am short of space, system screams.
    Unfortunately I don't know how it was first time, because bootloop came all of the sudden.
    What is funny is fact that one of file manages show 4Gb of internal memory while other 8Gb but both full to 95%.
    Where is rest of space?
    It should be mounted or mentioned anywhere.

    There's no TWRP recovery for Galaxy A41. Bad luck, too.
    SafetyNet fix is not available for Samsung at this moment, either.

    I've read that Magisk manages many things then it should be possible to manage space, but how?
    I didn't find anything related.

    Any observations and comments will be appreciated.

    #------ Final action -------------------
    Factory reset fixed problem.
    Good thing that root access still remained.
    I have enough for now.

    BTW:
    Looks like bootloader returned to locked state, see picture.
    SafetyNet is still red, though.

    Worth to know:
    Factory reset didn't revoke my changes made under /system, probably because programmers didn't consider that anyone will be messing there.

    Could someone make me a favor and provide fingerprints from original A415FXXU1BUA1 ROM?
    I am trying to get build props from it but due to lack of experience it takes time to unpack and seek through whole this stuff.