[T-Mobile] Unlocking the boot loader

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  1. AngelArs

    AngelArs Well-Known Member

    I always wondered why everyone didn't root their phone. It allows you so much more freedom with your device. If you ever have problems with your phone you can simply reverse the procedure and the manufacture would be none the wiser that your phone was ever rooted. The other day I finally was able to get a new phone (HTC One) and of course I was looking forward to getting it rooted. I looked for instructions on how to do it and according to the webpage it said I needed to unlock the bootloader. No big deal... or so I thought.

    When I went to the HTC website to unlock the bootloader it said that unlocking the boot loader was permanent, and could not be undone. It said it would void the warranty. Is this true or are they just trying to scare people? I clearly don't want to lose the warranty, but there are some programs (like Titanium) that I'd really like to install. I don't remember ever having this issue with any of my other rooted phones. What gives

  2. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin' Moderator

    Depending on the device, unlocking can be permanent or temporary. Using the HTC dev tool to unlock is indeed permanent and does in fact void the warranty by recording your device's serial number in their database of unlocked devices.
  3. Hadron

    Hadron Well-Known Member Contributor

    Probably this discussion belongs in the One All Things Root forum, because there are device-specific, or at least manufacturer-specific, elements to it. But anyway...

    Although I've not used an official HTC unlock myself, my understanding is that like many manufacturers it will report visibly (on the hboot screen) that the phone has been unlocked. I'd expect it can be relocked, but in that case it will report its status as "relocked" so you can still see that has been unlocked at some point. This is all assuming that it behaves like other devices unlocked using HTCDev. If S-Off comes that may be changeable, but right now yes, they will know if you have done this.

    But your side-bar says you have a Developer Edition: surely that came unlocked already, in which case the unlock flag doesn't affect your warranty status?
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  4. AngelArs

    AngelArs Well-Known Member

    So then it's not the unlocking of the bootloader per se that is an issue, it's that HTC records it being done via their website? So is there any other way to unlock the bootloader, bypassing the HTC site, so HTC can't record the serial number?

    That's a great question Hadron. I forgot all about that. Is there any way to check to see if the bootloader process is already unlocked? :confused:
    scotty85 likes this.
  5. Rush

    Rush {<>}~{<>}

    Thread moved. :)
    scotty85 likes this.
  6. AngelArs

    AngelArs Well-Known Member

    Hadron I did some digging and found out that the Developers Edition of the One has the Bootloader pre-unlocked, right out of the box! More information about it HERE.

    THANKS for leading me to find this information out. Now I feel so much better rooting it without waiting a year for the warranty to elapse. BTW I also learned that HTC has also posted a stock backuo of the phone HERE.

    Life is good
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  7. EarlyMon

    EarlyMon The PearlyMon Moderator

    When you boot into your bootloader, it will say that it's unlocked.

    Strongly suggest installing a recovery (CWM or TWRP) and making a nandroid backup to start, if you haven't already.

    One posted backup by HTC is an RUU and you typically have to lock your bootloader before applying those.

    The other is a zip format, I'll disassemble it and check if you can use it with a particular recovery if you like.
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  8. AngelArs

    AngelArs Well-Known Member

    Yes that would be great, thank you EarlyMon :)

    I noticed that there is a third CRC version. I'm not familiar with CRC, how is that used?
  9. EarlyMon

    EarlyMon The PearlyMon Moderator

    That's a source-code package, crc is a form of checksum for the package, stands for cyclic redundancy check - only of interest to developers.

    I'll check the zip now and post back, caught me at a good time for that. :)
    scotty85 likes this.
  10. EarlyMon

    EarlyMon The PearlyMon Moderator

    Ok - that zip file is NOT a backup, it's not at all usable by regular people so far as I can see.

    You'll need Android SDK components to install a recovery, get the mini-SDK here - http://androidforums.com/faqs/443072-adb-guide-updated-12-05-2011-a.html#post5389081

    You want TWRP 2.5, get that here with instructions - http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2173870

    Pay particular note -

    • Download or copy the TWRP recovery to the same place you downloaded the SDK goodies, that would be c:\sdk-tools if you followed my advice on Windows.
    • Turn off fastboot in your phone settings
    • Boot to hboot by powering down, then hold volume-down while powering up
    • Select fastboot from there
      • Yeah - fastboot means more than just one thing, dumb, I know

    Then install the recovery image you downloaded.

    Note again where their instructions say -

    fastboot flash recovery recovery.img

    You'll want to replace recovery.img with the actual_filename.img that you downloaded.

    And where the command says fastboot, see my Mini-SDK instructions on executing that command if you're on a Mac or Linux.
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  11. chong67

    chong67 Well-Known Member

    Is this Hboot going to be easy to unlock on this phone?

    I just wonder if it is unlock, will it be the same process for all the phone carriers.
  12. scotty85

    scotty85 Guides Guide

    htc has said they will allow all modles to be unlockable,unless carrier restrictions apply.

    verizon and ATT have been nororious for trying to keep their high end devices from being unlockable. early on,phones were able to be tricked into unlocking with a change of CID,but write protections of the memory blocks where the CID lives now prevent that option.

    having said that,ive not known of any t mobile or sprint devices to not be supported,so it should remail easy to unlock those versions,even if ATT pulls the plug on theirs.

    the "this is permanent" statement is likely refering to the fact that a watermark will always remain,to alert those who look,that you have unlocked at one time. the bootloader is re-lockable,but at that point,you are relocked and not locked. if s off is achieved,then even this watermark is reversable.

    its extremely easy to root any device that provides access to boot,system,and recovery. the hard part is gaining that access. pre-htcdev some sort of exploit needed to be found. with htcdev,you just go to their website and unlock :)

    the basic steps to root ANY htc device with an unlockable bootloader are:
    -install recovery
    -flash root files with recovery
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  13. AngelArs

    AngelArs Well-Known Member

    ...and the moral of the story is, if AT&T doesn't care about what people want, then people shouldn't care about what AT&T wants (which is your money). Send them a message with your wallet, and maybe they will wise up and start playing nice like the other carriers.
  14. scotty85

    scotty85 Guides Guide

    absolutely. only thing keeping me with vzw for now is strong LTE in this area,and grandfathered unlimited data. all my contracts are up. i can save a considerable amount F $$ by taking my 4 lines to t mobile,and when i do so,i intend to inform whomever i have cancel service the main reasons are:
    1)slow updates to the intergation of all vzws bloat
    2)their efforts to keep high end htc's off the unlock list

    as you said,if enuff folks do it,they may change. :)
    daswooski and AngelArs like this.
  15. AngelArs

    AngelArs Well-Known Member

    AT&T called me and asked my why I cancelled all of my services with them (U-verse, internet, phone, ect) and told me that if I came back that they could save me money. I told them that they would never see my money again, because I don't support companies that act like bullies. I told them that my money should be respected, and AT&T has a long history of NOT respecting their customers. I am soooo happy that I switched to T-Mobile. They have great customer service.

    For example, last week when playing around with my HTC One I tripped the SIM Lock code. The phone stopped working. I needed another 8 digit code to be able to use it again. I called T-Mo and they told me that even though my phone was not a "T-Mo version" (it's the developers edition) that they would help me to restore it. They then looked up the process of how to restore my phone (**50* enter this number, press the pound key, etc) and walked me through it. They even gave me HTC's phone number in-case I needed any additional help. Several minutes later the phone was back up and running again. Thank you T-Mobile. I already know that if I had called AT&T that they would have told me that it wasn't their phone and just blown me off. Been there. Done that. Prefer T-Mobile
  16. Captain Mal 78

    Captain Mal 78 Well-Known Member

    So how's your data connection working on T-mobile's network? I'd like to get the developer's edition since it's 64 gigs, but I heard T-Mobile's version supports more bands (limited to 32 gigs though).
  17. AngelArs

    AngelArs Well-Known Member

  18. Captain Mal 78

    Captain Mal 78 Well-Known Member

    Right, but my question is about the data connection. Are you able to get 4G LTE and 4G on T-mobile's network with your phone? I heard that the unlocked version from HTC does not support as many data bands as the HTC One version from T-Mobile, so I figured The T-Mobile version would be the better version to get.
  19. scotty85

    scotty85 Guides Guide

    correct,the international variants wont support LTE,and the ability to get 3g and hspa depends on your location having been refarmed to use the 1900 band in place of 1700.

    i live in a partially refarmed area,and i get H/3g in alot of spots now. enuff to make it bearable,but im considering sellig mine and getting a devoted t mobile version for that same reason. id sure like LTE ;)

    in short,the t mobile version probbably would be a better option,unless your need for more storage is greater than the need for fast data speeds.
  20. Captain Mal 78

    Captain Mal 78 Well-Known Member

    Thanks. Looks like I won't be buying directly from HTC's store since I definitely want 4g LTE on my next phone. Trying to decide between the HTC One or the Galaxy S4. Leaning towards the One since Samsung doesn't sell a 32 gig U.S. version (and you can't run apps and games from the external card which severely limits what you can put on the phone - only 9 gigs.)
  21. chong67

    chong67 Well-Known Member

  22. EarlyMon

    EarlyMon The PearlyMon Moderator

    That s-off is for-pay only and no known details.

    How do you know that they don't use htcdev as the first step?

    Or are you referring to another unlocking method?
  23. scotty85

    scotty85 Guides Guide

    they are using jtag,wich requires complete disasembly to use special hardware to write partitions that normally wuld be write protected. jtag has been a viable means of resurecting bricked devices,and its fairly easy to turn the secure flag off during this process. only in this case,the phone is not bricked to start with.

    the advantages:
    -its done via hardware,so no other expoits or software are needed
    -its independent of firmware,so it works no matter what,and you dont need to be rooted first.
    -it will work,even if no other software methods are found, remember,the current methods require either a)an external sd card(unlimited) or b)the ability to be superCIDed(facepalm). the tegra 3 one x still has no s off,and they worked on the att one x fora year prior to finding the facepalm exploit. it is possible that a free software exploit will take several months or not happen at all.

    -its not free
    -you need to send in your phone,since the process requires disassembly
    -they need to disassemble your phone. however, repairing phones is what these guys do for a living and theyre good at it. ive had 2 done by them and had good expereinces. call them and talk to josh if youre nervous about this aspect of it

    the free part is irrelevant to me,as i always donate to the devs whose tools i use. not trying to push anyone into it,just get it across that it is a completely viable option if your impatient(like me :D) and can live with the disadvantages.

    my 2 cents anyway :p
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  24. LoyalServant

    LoyalServant Well-Known Member

    I really should get back into hardware hacking.... I used to poke around with the JTAG on lots of stuff just to see what I could get into.
    Might still have the hardware someplace to do it... but that was in the days before you could buy JTAG interfaces..

    Now, the author that wrote the article linked above makes a reference to you not deserving S-OFF if you paid for it is ignorant.
    There are a few smart people on this forum that I know will agree with me that reverse engineering hardware is both expensive and hard. I have done it.
    Manufacturers in a lot of cases don't exactly label the JTAG port OR the pads.
    Finding them requires hours of research and visual inspection at times.

    If you want to play, you gotta pay and that means if you want S-OFF right now, your sending it to someone that can use the JTAG interface to get you S-OFF.

    Sorry I just don't like ignorant bloggers making comments that have no clue. :rolleyes:
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  25. scotty85

    scotty85 Guides Guide

    I'm with you 100%. It pretty well irritates me how much flack mobile tech videos has gotten for providing a service,by folks who don't understand that service. They have to have the proper tools,and it takes up their time-its not like you can take apart new smartphones and put them back together in 2 minutes. Its sort of like expecting your mechanic to give your car a tuneup or perform a diagnostic service for free.

    I've got an xtc clip,wich is sort of like a hardware hack. I've also got a rif box that I wish i was smart enuff to use ;) trying to figure out how to get my flyer into download mode so I could get radio s off on it :D

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