[Tutorial] Xperia S/P/U/Sola Bootloader Unlocking & Relocking

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DooMLoRD

Inactive Recognized Developer
Jul 27, 2010
13,191
39,697
Pune
Quick tutorial for unlocking & relocking the bootloader of the Xperia S/P/U/Sola.

this is the official way to unlock bootloader

Warning!

This procedure will wipe the /data partition of your phone, so you will loose all ur stored data, settings. SDCARD will NOT BE WIPED!!!

DRM keys WILL be lost forever



why to unlock bootloader?

  1. u can flash custom ROMs/Kernels
  2. u dont need to worry if the new firmware can be rooted or not as with unlocked bootloader u can always ROOT ur device
  3. SE/Sony gives sneak-peaks/preview builds of latest OS which requires unlocked bootloaders, as they did with Xperia 2011 line (they had ICS alpha/beta), so who knows may be SE/Sony may give early builds of ICS (JellyBean???) ;)



Most of this is taken from lollylost100's his tutorial from ARC thread (all credits for that concise tutorial go to him, i have elaborated on a few things and added device specific changes)


btw i dont have this device, most of this testing was done on user darkpisces's phone so thanks a lot to him for helping me out!!!


[ before we begin unlocking bootloader ]

  • get the IMEI code for ur device: type *#06# in phone dialer to find it out, note only the digits (no dashes)
  • download the fastboot package
  • download the latest FlashTool Xperia Driver Pack and install fastboot drivers (common) & adb drivers for this device from the list!
  • make sure u have a windows PC with USB cable to connect the phone
  • power down ur phone and keeping the Volume Up button pressed connect the USB cable to PC this will trigger FASTBOOT mode and windows will start driver installation, which should be automatically done
  • once drivers are installed just disconnect cable and power on device


[ how to unlock ] (official way)

  1. Go to: http://unlockbootloader.sonymobile.com/ and read everything!
  2. At the bottom click 'Start Unlocking the Bootloader'
    First, you should confirm that it is possible to unlock the boot loader of your phone by checking the service menu. In your phone, open the dialler and enter *#*#7378423#*#* to access the service menu.

    In your phone, tap Service info > Configuration > Rooting Status. If Bootloader unlock allowed says Yes, then you can continue with the next step. If it says No, or if the status is missing, your device cannot be unlocked.
  3. after u have verified that u can unlock bootloader, scroll to the bottom of the page and click "Continue"
  4. you will get "are u sure prompt" accept it by clicking "yes i am sure" (i assume that u have read an understood it)
  5. then accept the "legal terms"
  6. finally u will get a "Create Unlock request" page, enter your IMEI (sometimes the last digit needs to be removed for this to work), name and email address
  7. You should now receive your unique unlock key, its displayed on screen, SAVE THIS KEY SAFELY
  8. Extract fastboot_with_Android_USB_file.rar and open fastboot folder
  9. Hold SHIFT and right click on the background of the folder
  10. Select 'Open command window here'
  11. Connect your phone in fastboot mode (turn phone off, hold Volume UP button and plug in USB Cable) [make sure drivers are installed as explained above)
  12. In the cmd windows type in fastboot.exe -i 0x0fce getvar version
  13. If a value is returned (it will return 0.5), it means the phone is correctly connected
  14. Type in fastboot.exe -i 0x0fce oem unlock 0xKEY and replace KEY with the key which u received earlier.
  15. You're device should now be bootloader unlocked

If this tutorial is too much for you then itskapil wrote a step-by-step guide (and recorded a video also):
-Instructions: http://www.theandroidsoul.com/how-to-unlock-bootloader-xperia-arc-play-neo-pro/
-Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LRH3pC7MhEA
(the above videos and some steps are for Xperia 2011 devices, but most the steps are same for Xperia S/P/U/Sola)



Info on Relocking bootloader is in next post
 
Last edited:

DooMLoRD

Inactive Recognized Developer
Jul 27, 2010
13,191
39,697
Pune
Relocking Bootloader

this Relock FTF is based on the package posted by Blagus in his ARC thread (all credits for this go to him, i have only added the correct loader.sin for this device)


RELOCKING BOOTLOADER WILL ALLOW YOU TO GET NEWEST UPDATES & REPAIR DEVICE USING SEUS/PCC



before we begin relocking the bootloader make sure that u have flashtool download & installed


u can get the latest version of FlashTool from:
http://androxyde.github.com/Flashtool/

download link is under "Installation" tab


if u have not use FlashTool before read this thread:
http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1526866




download this FTF:
Xperia S -> Xperia-S_Relock_bootloader.ftf
Xperia U -> http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?p=26783129#post26783129 (thanks to enigma77x)

flash this FTF via FlashTool


RELOCK FTFs FOR P/U/Sola are under testing! if u are interested in testing kindly contact me via P.M., before u contact me, make sure that u have UNLOCKED the bootloader!

when it says enter flashmode, power down device and keeping VOLUME DOWN button pressed connect usb cable to phone, the device will now enter flashmode (green LED)

after this file is flashed reboot phone


bootloader will now be relocked!!!


incase device doenst boot DO NOT PANIC... u can flash stock firmware FTF anytime to get back to stock ROM... i will post link to working FTF once its available...


P.S.: there is no official way to relock bootloader
 
Last edited:

chesterr

Senior Member
Nov 27, 2010
997
167
Galle
Well I hope not nothing's gonna happen to the phone when we are gonna update the phone to the ICS, right now I'm in China and it's not released over here and looking forward to get this baby in my hand.
 

Gjole86

Senior Member
Aug 13, 2010
502
95
when official ICS is out, it can be flashed via flashtool as FTF file when it will be online somewhere :)
PS: after unlocking bootloader via official method (official Sony website way), u wont be able to update phone's software via PC Companion / or over the air
 
Last edited:

chesterr

Senior Member
Nov 27, 2010
997
167
Galle
yea I guess it's pointless locking back the BOOTLOADER but I think with the unofficial way, they know or they have registered the serial key or IMEI which you won't be able to update it to ICS via SEUS or PcCompaninon. Either way like you said, we can use the FTF files to update it to ICS. and I saw when the run ICS on Arc S and Play, I saw that they had to unlock the bootloader to install alpha ICS and it was mentioned there that you might face lotta troubles when you update it to the official ICS, so I'm gonna wait till it gets official ICS cause it'll be out very soon like end of the March.
 
Last edited:

Bin4ry

Inactive Recognized Developer
Nov 14, 2008
2,007
5,906
Berlin
yea I guess it's pointless locking back the BOOTLOADER but I think with the unofficial way, they know or they have registered the serial key or IMEI which you won't be able to update it to ICS via SEUS or PcCompaninon. Either way like you said, we can use the FTF files to update it to ICS. and I saw when the run ICS on Arc S and Play, I saw that they had to unlock the bootloader to install alpha ICS and it was mentioned there that you might face lotta troubles when you update it to the official ICS, so I'm gonna wait till it gets official ICS cause it'll be out very soon like end of the March.

NO!
After relock you can use SEUS / PCC / EMMA again. The imei is used to generate the unique unlock-key. Also it gets stored to check if you claim warranty. Arc has showed us that SE is not denying warranty at all if you unlocked. They just decline it if the cause of the failure is a custom rom etc. pp. for example if you ****ed your cpu with overclocking.

SEUS/PCC/EMMA checks TA area for the unlock key, if it is present it reject the phone and refuses to update. The relock Doom posted here is the same way we worked out on Arc. It deletes the unlockkey from TA and this way you are again able to use SEUS/PCC/EMMA.

Hope i enlighted you a bit.

Regards
 

DooMLoRD

Inactive Recognized Developer
Jul 27, 2010
13,191
39,697
Pune
thanks now could you indulge my question as a visitor to this device?

What is SEUS/PCC/EMMA ? ota updates?

SEUS/PCC/EMMA are all official ways to repair firmware or update device to latest firmware...

SEUS/PCC are available to all users (consumers)... EMMA is special and is only available to select individuals...

OTA updates are same as regular Over-The-Air updates for any other device...
 

chesterr

Senior Member
Nov 27, 2010
997
167
Galle
NO!
After relock you can use SEUS / PCC / EMMA again. The imei is used to generate the unique unlock-key. Also it gets stored to check if you claim warranty. Arc has showed us that SE is not denying warranty at all if you unlocked. They just decline it if the cause of the failure is a custom rom etc. pp. for example if you ****ed your cpu with overclocking.

SEUS/PCC/EMMA checks TA area for the unlock key, if it is present it reject the phone and refuses to update. The relock Doom posted here is the same way we worked out on Arc. It deletes the unlockkey from TA and this way you are again able to use SEUS/PCC/EMMA.

Hope i enlighted you a bit.

Regards

Oh that's nice to hear. boo ya that means I can unlock the damn bootloader.I'm waiting to get this on my hands very soon.
 

Rashkae

Senior Member
Nov 10, 2008
588
89
Singapore
I'm having a problem here:

power down ur phone and keeping the Volume Up button pressed connect the USB cable to PC this will trigger FASTBOOT mode and windows will start driver installation, extract the above package and point the driver install to that location (usb_driver) folder
once drivers are installed just disconnect cable and power on device

"Extract the above package" - you mean fastboot, right? Ok, with you so far.
"Point the driver isntall to that location". - erm. How? I don't get that option, it just searches windows update and preconfigured driver locations for ages, and the Xperia S does not show up in the device manager as an incorrectly installed device.
 

DooMLoRD

Inactive Recognized Developer
Jul 27, 2010
13,191
39,697
Pune
I'm having a problem here:

power down ur phone and keeping the Volume Up button pressed connect the USB cable to PC this will trigger FASTBOOT mode and windows will start driver installation, extract the above package and point the driver install to that location (usb_driver) folder
once drivers are installed just disconnect cable and power on device

"Extract the above package" - you mean fastboot, right? Ok, with you so far.
"Point the driver isntall to that location". - erm. How? I don't get that option, it just searches windows update and preconfigured driver locations for ages, and the Xperia S does not show up in the device manager as an incorrectly installed device.

please search online on how to manually install device driver
 
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Rashkae

Senior Member
Nov 10, 2008
588
89
Singapore
please search online on how to manually install device driver

I did. It all pointed to going into the device manager, highlighting the troublesome device then manually installing the driver. There is no "missing" device in my device manager list.

---------- Post added at 02:52 AM ---------- Previous post was at 02:38 AM ----------

Oh, and the usual method I use of right-clicking the .inf file didn't work. It threw an error message about the driver package not being designed to work this way.
 

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  • 208
    Quick tutorial for unlocking & relocking the bootloader of the Xperia S/P/U/Sola.

    this is the official way to unlock bootloader

    Warning!

    This procedure will wipe the /data partition of your phone, so you will loose all ur stored data, settings. SDCARD will NOT BE WIPED!!!

    DRM keys WILL be lost forever



    why to unlock bootloader?

    1. u can flash custom ROMs/Kernels
    2. u dont need to worry if the new firmware can be rooted or not as with unlocked bootloader u can always ROOT ur device
    3. SE/Sony gives sneak-peaks/preview builds of latest OS which requires unlocked bootloaders, as they did with Xperia 2011 line (they had ICS alpha/beta), so who knows may be SE/Sony may give early builds of ICS (JellyBean???) ;)



    Most of this is taken from lollylost100's his tutorial from ARC thread (all credits for that concise tutorial go to him, i have elaborated on a few things and added device specific changes)


    btw i dont have this device, most of this testing was done on user darkpisces's phone so thanks a lot to him for helping me out!!!


    [ before we begin unlocking bootloader ]

    • get the IMEI code for ur device: type *#06# in phone dialer to find it out, note only the digits (no dashes)
    • download the fastboot package
    • download the latest FlashTool Xperia Driver Pack and install fastboot drivers (common) & adb drivers for this device from the list!
    • make sure u have a windows PC with USB cable to connect the phone
    • power down ur phone and keeping the Volume Up button pressed connect the USB cable to PC this will trigger FASTBOOT mode and windows will start driver installation, which should be automatically done
    • once drivers are installed just disconnect cable and power on device


    [ how to unlock ] (official way)

    1. Go to: http://unlockbootloader.sonymobile.com/ and read everything!
    2. At the bottom click 'Start Unlocking the Bootloader'
      First, you should confirm that it is possible to unlock the boot loader of your phone by checking the service menu. In your phone, open the dialler and enter *#*#7378423#*#* to access the service menu.

      In your phone, tap Service info > Configuration > Rooting Status. If Bootloader unlock allowed says Yes, then you can continue with the next step. If it says No, or if the status is missing, your device cannot be unlocked.
    3. after u have verified that u can unlock bootloader, scroll to the bottom of the page and click "Continue"
    4. you will get "are u sure prompt" accept it by clicking "yes i am sure" (i assume that u have read an understood it)
    5. then accept the "legal terms"
    6. finally u will get a "Create Unlock request" page, enter your IMEI (sometimes the last digit needs to be removed for this to work), name and email address
    7. You should now receive your unique unlock key, its displayed on screen, SAVE THIS KEY SAFELY
    8. Extract fastboot_with_Android_USB_file.rar and open fastboot folder
    9. Hold SHIFT and right click on the background of the folder
    10. Select 'Open command window here'
    11. Connect your phone in fastboot mode (turn phone off, hold Volume UP button and plug in USB Cable) [make sure drivers are installed as explained above)
    12. In the cmd windows type in fastboot.exe -i 0x0fce getvar version
    13. If a value is returned (it will return 0.5), it means the phone is correctly connected
    14. Type in fastboot.exe -i 0x0fce oem unlock 0xKEY and replace KEY with the key which u received earlier.
    15. You're device should now be bootloader unlocked

    If this tutorial is too much for you then itskapil wrote a step-by-step guide (and recorded a video also):
    -Instructions: http://www.theandroidsoul.com/how-to-unlock-bootloader-xperia-arc-play-neo-pro/
    -Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LRH3pC7MhEA
    (the above videos and some steps are for Xperia 2011 devices, but most the steps are same for Xperia S/P/U/Sola)



    Info on Relocking bootloader is in next post
    96
    Relocking Bootloader

    this Relock FTF is based on the package posted by Blagus in his ARC thread (all credits for this go to him, i have only added the correct loader.sin for this device)


    RELOCKING BOOTLOADER WILL ALLOW YOU TO GET NEWEST UPDATES & REPAIR DEVICE USING SEUS/PCC



    before we begin relocking the bootloader make sure that u have flashtool download & installed


    u can get the latest version of FlashTool from:
    http://androxyde.github.com/Flashtool/

    download link is under "Installation" tab


    if u have not use FlashTool before read this thread:
    http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1526866




    download this FTF:
    Xperia S -> Xperia-S_Relock_bootloader.ftf
    Xperia U -> http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?p=26783129#post26783129 (thanks to enigma77x)

    flash this FTF via FlashTool


    RELOCK FTFs FOR P/U/Sola are under testing! if u are interested in testing kindly contact me via P.M., before u contact me, make sure that u have UNLOCKED the bootloader!

    when it says enter flashmode, power down device and keeping VOLUME DOWN button pressed connect usb cable to phone, the device will now enter flashmode (green LED)

    after this file is flashed reboot phone


    bootloader will now be relocked!!!


    incase device doenst boot DO NOT PANIC... u can flash stock firmware FTF anytime to get back to stock ROM... i will post link to working FTF once its available...


    P.S.: there is no official way to relock bootloader
    20
    hi DooMLoRD,
    i have created relock bootloader for Xperia U
    http://tiny.cc/ST25i_Relock_Bootloader
    it's working :)
    15
    yea I guess it's pointless locking back the BOOTLOADER but I think with the unofficial way, they know or they have registered the serial key or IMEI which you won't be able to update it to ICS via SEUS or PcCompaninon. Either way like you said, we can use the FTF files to update it to ICS. and I saw when the run ICS on Arc S and Play, I saw that they had to unlock the bootloader to install alpha ICS and it was mentioned there that you might face lotta troubles when you update it to the official ICS, so I'm gonna wait till it gets official ICS cause it'll be out very soon like end of the March.

    NO!
    After relock you can use SEUS / PCC / EMMA again. The imei is used to generate the unique unlock-key. Also it gets stored to check if you claim warranty. Arc has showed us that SE is not denying warranty at all if you unlocked. They just decline it if the cause of the failure is a custom rom etc. pp. for example if you ****ed your cpu with overclocking.

    SEUS/PCC/EMMA checks TA area for the unlock key, if it is present it reject the phone and refuses to update. The relock Doom posted here is the same way we worked out on Arc. It deletes the unlockkey from TA and this way you are again able to use SEUS/PCC/EMMA.

    Hope i enlighted you a bit.

    Regards
    14
    manage to do this on my x64 Windows 7.

    key thing is to get the right drivers


    I download the drivers from here, http://download.theandroidsoul.com/file/unlock xperia arc bootloaders.zip

    and use the fastboot drivers from the drivers folder.

    then in that few seconds where the phone is in fastboot mode, I update the drivers accordingly.

    The problem I think is Windows 7 will automatically redirect the driver installation to default/generic installation if it can't find the driver for the device. So perhaps to avoid it totally it's to use gpedit.msc to stop the redirection of the devices..
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