Question Unlocking bootloader will disable the camera?

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Full House

Senior Member
Aug 25, 2018
274
72
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
I am very pissed off that Samsung is doing this as if blocking Samsung pay etc is not enough , on the Samsung forum some moderators deliberately lie stating that root voids the warranty which is false for the European Union, they do this just to discourage users as consumer protection laws are very strict in Europe which requires the manufacturer to take care of hardware failures. despite the software modifications if the manufacturer refuses it is up to him to prove that it is the software modification which caused the hardware failure.For my part, it will be my last Samsung.I hope that the same thing will happen to them as Huawei and that Xiaomi or Google become number 1.
 

ParrotSquawk

Senior Member
Aug 28, 2007
416
43
Jupiter, FL
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3
The only reason i want root is to back up some data from an app that does not allow local backup (its cloud backup is gone as the app has been abandoned. Need root for 5 minutes to restore the database.

Also, root allows TiBackup access, basically allowing me to use it as a "restore point" for misbehaving apps.
 

ParrotSquawk

Senior Member
Aug 28, 2007
416
43
Jupiter, FL
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3
I've been unlocking and flashing these devices for years and I can assure you that the act of merely unlocking the bootloader does not affect the Knox status.

That isn't affected until the first time that you flash an unofficial image to one of the partitions.

You can relock the bootloader without making modifications and Knox will still be intact.
I have been searching the boards, other forums, and all over the web but cannot seem to unlock the bootloader so I can root this ATT 926U. I'd lock the bl after rooting (no new ROMS because I haven't found one that doesn't trip KNOX).

Is there a real step by step to unlock, root, then relock the bootloader? Yes, I have searched. Most are for non-US phones or not for the z fold 3 with snapdragon.

Help, please!!!
 

ParrotSquawk

Senior Member
Aug 28, 2007
416
43
Jupiter, FL
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3
I still haven't found a way to unlock the 926U (AT&T US, Android 12, UI 4.0).
 

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Tom33231

Member
Jan 16, 2022
27
1
Does the latest android 12 update still have the boot loader limitation for killing the cameras when the boot loader is unlocked, or did this issue get fixed?
 

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  • 24
    Did your phone arrive and did you unlock it?

    Yes, my Fold3 (F926B) arrived yesterday and I unlocked its bootloader this afternoon.

    I can confirm that all cameras stop working afterwards. This means that facial recognition also fails. Anything that uses any of the cameras will fail.

    I tried installing a third-party camera app, but this also failed. I took a logcat of the failure:

    Code:
    07-12 13:50:51.413  1384 31574 W ServiceManager: Permission failure: android.permission.CAMERA_OPEN_CLOSE_LISTENER from uid=10291 pid=8927
    07-12 13:50:51.413  1384 31574 D CameraService: CameraDeviceState for CameraManager
    07-12 13:50:51.413  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 0 facing CAMERA_FACING_BACK state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client net.sourceforge.opencamera API Level 1
    07-12 13:50:51.413  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 1 facing CAMERA_FACING_FRONT state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.413  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 2 facing CAMERA_FACING_BACK state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.414  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 20 facing CAMERA_FACING_BACK state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.414  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 21 facing CAMERA_FACING_BACK state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.414  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 23 facing CAMERA_FACING_BACK state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.414  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 3 facing CAMERA_FACING_FRONT state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.414  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 4 facing CAMERA_FACING_FRONT state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.414  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 52 facing CAMERA_FACING_BACK state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.414  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 71 facing CAMERA_FACING_FRONT state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.414  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 73 facing CAMERA_FACING_FRONT state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.414  8927  9780 I CameraManagerGlobal: Camera 91 facing CAMERA_FACING_FRONT state now CAMERA_STATE_CLOSED for client android.system API Level 2
    07-12 13:50:51.415  1384 31574 D CameraService: getNumberOfCameras E
    07-12 13:50:51.416  1384 31574 W ServiceManager: Permission failure: android.permission.SYSTEM_CAMERA from uid=10291 pid=8927
    07-12 13:50:51.416  1384 31574 D CameraService: getNumberOfCameras X: ok
    07-12 13:50:51.416  1384 31574 D CameraService: getNumberOfCameras E
    07-12 13:50:51.416  1384 31574 W ServiceManager: Permission failure: android.permission.SYSTEM_CAMERA from uid=10291 pid=8927
    07-12 13:50:51.416  1384 31574 D CameraService: getNumberOfCameras X: ok
    07-12 13:50:51.416  1384 31574 D CameraService: getCameraInfo E: 0

    At a glance, I'm confident that this can be fixed using Magisk (i.e. root), but I can't rule out the camera having been disabled in other ways, too. The situation may not be recoverable.

    After relocking the bootloader, the camera works again.

    It's really obnoxious of Samsung to do this, and I am in two minds now about keeping the device and working on a fix for the issue, or simply returning the unit in disgust. This is the kind of practice I expect from Apple, and I always tell Apple users to vote with their wallet when confronted with such anti-consumer practices.
    10
    Apologies that we haven't really been updating every step along the way the last few days! Joined a telegram group with other devs for fold 3 issues, which now is mostly about the camera, and just kind of been updating each other in the group.

    But we did stumble upon 2 odd things today.
    1 - the newest bootloader force closes the camera app and causes the phone to restart, where the original one just gives you an error message when you try to use the camera.
    2 - when you do try to use the camera, the lens does try to focus, meaning that the drivers and libraries are all loaded up and working properly. And it takes a few seconds for the camera app to say the camera isn't working (because another thread is opened when calling for the camera to the isp to display what the camera sees which takes a moment.)

    Both of those are kind of contradictory.
    (the rest of this comment is purely my opinion and doesn't explicitly represent the opinions of the rest of the dev group)
    The first implies that the actual bootloader impliments the lockout, whereas the second infers that it's software related.

    I potentially think a couple options as to what might be going on.
    1 - going with the simplest idea that should have been checked first, it could be as simple as SafetyNet Attestation built into the camera app that checks if the BL is unlocked right after starting the camera, which would explain the breif delay. So I'm going to check that tomorrow.
    2 - using the camera contexts, you can shut down the isp after the phone has booted as there is a couple of Contexts in the kernel talking about it. Shutting down the isp itself would stop the camera from being able to process and display what the camera sees (explains why opening the app takes a few seconds of black screen to say it doesn't work)
    3 - I know there was a 3, but my brain is fried as I'm about to go go bed so I'll edit-updates tomorrow when I am awake and back at my computer.

    However, this doesn't exactly explain why the new bootloader causes a force close and then phone reboot unless Samsung either messed up code somewhere in the new BL, or did it intentionally to create more frustration. Nor does it say how.

    We are all working very hard on this and working from different angles to try to cover as much ground as possible. Ivan said he had a possible fix, but he's been Mia for a week and no one has been able to get ahold of him so we can't rely on that right now!
    8
    Just to update since it's been a while.
    I have not been able to do a lot with this recently. The team has been working on it, but I have had numerous situations pull me away. Busy season for business since it's starting to get cold so I've been working nonstop. In the process of hiring more people so I can have more free time.

    Really debating doing a few things that I can't talk publicly about atm in order to get more Intel on the camera.
    I do apologize about the lackluster update because I know a lot of people are really looking forward to this
    8
    do you think it would work if i unlock my bootloader then flash a variant firmware then relock it?
    If you try to relock the bootloader with an unsigned firmware, it will brick your phone and you'd have to use Odin to flash factory firmware to fix it.

    I'm getting close to finding solutions, just hang tight.
    Still have half of our kernel code to go through. But I found the camera drivers and source code, which helps me know what to look for
    7
    So I'm not an android developer (been using Linux for 29 years though) and I do not yet have this phone but am planning on it. Still using rooted Note 8.

    Question - did any of you look at this from a different perspective - like what actions happen when you unlock the bootloader? If you can find the instructions that are executed when you "flip that switch" you can see the command that they are running to disable the cameras. I don't know if you can do strings searches for whatever the message is that is shown when you unlock the BL on the phone, but you should be able to download most of the software from / to your PC and search from there. Maybe they're are doing something like a linux module blacklist. I don't know where Android keeps the files like modules.conf (I'll search my rooted Note8 later) but that could be a possibility.

    Are there tools in Android where you can closely monitor when new jobs start to maybe see what happens when the BL is unlocked? If so, then maybe you can upload 'strace' and repeat the process to see what is executed.

    I figure for them to be able to change your phone on the fly that quickly, AND to put it back once the BL is locked (assuming no flashes) it has to be something like a command or a module. Since it also looks to see if anything was flashed I'm leaning towards a program, although if these things still run dm-verity then a command might not be necessary since flashes should be seen on boot.

    If it's a command it could be a new one. Maybe if someone has the earlier Fold (rooted) they could do a "ls -latR /" and someone could do the same on the Fold 3 - then do a diff to see what new commands show up.

    Then again - maybe I'm just too familiar with Linux and there are too many differences with Android. Hopefully this at least helps spur thought.