why lock bootloaders?


  1. TheAtheistReverend

    TheAtheistReverend Anybody want a peanut? VIP Member

    More specifically, why does HTC insist on locking them down more than say Sammy? They know we are eventually going to break the lock anyway, so it is nothing more than a pain in the arse that discourages us from buying HTC?
    I just don't get the logic there?
    Does anyone have a serious and logical hypothesis or theory for why HTC (and Moto) are so damn stubborn?

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  2. Rxpert83

    Rxpert83 Dr. Feelgood Moderator

    HTC offers HTC dev to unlock it

    They lock it for many reasons. Two of the biggest ones: The carriers want them locked to prevent tethering, and it also prevents you from bricking the device and them eating the cost of repairs.

    Also, the large majority of smartphone buyers don't know what a locked bootloader is and will never care, so its mostly good for HTC/moto to do it'
  3. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin' Moderator

    It's also important to note that encrypted bootloaders aren't usually broken by the dev community. Work arounds have been found, but devices are only unlocked using tools provided by the oem, whether intentional or not.
  4. Rxpert83

    Rxpert83 Dr. Feelgood Moderator


    They have been for both of my HTC devices rather quickly. Then they patch it, and the devs find a new hole within a few weeks.
  5. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin' Moderator

    HTC might be easier than most, but there's a reason why no one has cracked an encrypted Motorola bootloader yet.
    Rxpert83 likes this.
  6. TheAtheistReverend

    TheAtheistReverend Anybody want a peanut? VIP Member

    This still doesn't make sense. Why lock it? Joe shmo doesn't care, so HTC should'nt care. Inspired community members are GOING to get it if they want it.
    I maintain that it serves no real purpose other than to piss us off and make us not want to buy that brand because if it pisses us off, then we must want it unlocked.
    Carriers have nothing to do with it, I think.
  7. Rxpert83

    Rxpert83 Dr. Feelgood Moderator

    Carriers have a huge part of it.

    Look at Verizon? They make you pay more for a "developer edition" if you wasn't a bootloader than can be unlocked.

    Also why most moto phones are Verizon....they lock the bootloaderrs down like fort knox
  8. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin' Moderator

    Carriers are the biggest reason unfortunately. They have the ability to dictate to android Oems because if they don't bend, the cdma carriers won't allow network access and will allow access to those who bend to their demands. The gsm carriers can't deny access, but they can refuse to subsidize it for the customers. Without the subsidy, most people won't buy it and the oem losses money.
    Rxpert83 likes this.
  9. lEquin0xl

    lEquin0xl Well-Known Member

    It's basically like adding security to DVDs or blurays, why am I not able to make a backup of movies I paid 20$ for? Then again if you really want to you can find a way. Maybe it's just so that the companies aren't seen as people who actually want their customers to do whatever they want with their phones. Even though we should be able to.
  10. TheAtheistReverend

    TheAtheistReverend Anybody want a peanut? VIP Member


    Does HTC lock down their phones "more" or "harder" on Verizon than others?

    I'm ignorant, but I would think they don't. If that is true, then the carrier argument is invalid in my mind.


    Except Joe-shmo can run an easily accessible and automated program to burn their dvds. I need to actually work to unlock my boot loader, let alone flash recoveries or ROMs.
  11. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin' Moderator

    I'm not too sure about HTC because I've never owned their devices, but I do know that Samsung encrypted the bootloader on the gs3 and note2 on Verizon, but not on any other carrier. Also, Motorola has an unlock tool for their bootloaders, but none of the devices that it supports are on Verizon.
    Rxpert83 and TheAtheistReverend like this.
  12. TheAtheistReverend

    TheAtheistReverend Anybody want a peanut? VIP Member

    Wow. Good info!

    What the heck?! Verizon again?!
  13. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin' Moderator

    Yep, only reason they unlocked the Verizon gs3 was because some Samsung employee leaked a compatible bootloader that was already cracked. The note 2 got unlocked by using a method that tricks it into thinking it's a gs3 and using a modified version of that leak.
  14. Rxpert83

    Rxpert83 Dr. Feelgood Moderator

    Exactly.

    And you can buy a "developer edition" phone on verizon that they let you unlock...... and it isnt subsidized. So you pay the full $650+ depending on the phone

    S3 price listed
  15. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin' Moderator

    If I recall correctly, you can't even buy them through Verizon, you have to buy them directly from the oem.
    Rxpert83 likes this.
  16. Rxpert83

    Rxpert83 Dr. Feelgood Moderator

    Correct

    Samsung Galaxy S
    jhawkkw likes this.
  17. karandpr

    karandpr Well-Known Member

    Depends on the perspective ...
    From a perspective of a developer ,hacker ,ROM flasher-fanatic ..Locked Bootloader is a hindrance .Thats a minority ...

    To be precise smartphone were designed to use in corporates and offices .
    if I were an employer ,the last thing i would want is ,employees with phones having locked bootloaders ..
    As an employer ,I would actually love phones with iron tight bootloaders and encrypted file systems .
    Gingerbread introduced Encryption on android and i believe it was implemented on most moto phones rather quickly
    That was moto's(and is maybe) target audience .

    To put into perceptive
    For a locked bootloader + encrypted File system ,it's impossible to extract data from a phone dump without a password and it is relatively hard to get a phone dump .

    For a locked BL without encryption (without the option of official unlocking):It still is hard to get a phone dump ,and if there is a patch there is a chance of data corruption to data wipe .Relatively it's still safe ..

    For a locked BL with an option to unlock : The dev option wipes the data so there is no chance to recover it .The security level is similar as above IMO .

    For an unlocked Bootloader :It will take 10 minutes to dump the data , 5 minutes to copy ...Faster if there is an access to external media ...

    The legal definition of computer is

    sammyz and TheAtheistReverend like this.
  18. argedion

    argedion The TechnoFrog Moderator

    Lets face it some people don't need to be tinkering anyways.
    Rxpert83 likes this.
  19. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin' Moderator

    The business application is respectable and one I always understood with out difficulty. What I don't like is that they take away the choice for those who do want to tinker. If you're counting, Verizon has not released a phone with an unencrypted bootloader since the gnex in December of 2011. So as far as tinkering goes, Verizon is not offering choice to those who do want to tinker. Yes there's those dev phones that one could purchase, but not many people are going to spend that kind of money for one.
  20. Bob Maxey

    Bob Maxey Well-Known Member

    Well, if most users do not care, it really matters very little if a handful of users who want to unlock the BL are pissed off. They do not represent the majority of buyers. Manufacturers and/or carriers do not want people fooling around where manufacturers and carriers think we do not belong.

    Seems to me that out of the tiny fraction of those that want unlocked loaders, only a tiny fraction of those know what they are doing in the first place and some of these people have problems. Many people get into trouble trying to root/unlock/jailbreak their devices because they really do not know what they are doing.

    When the majority of buyers become pissed, things have a way of changing. A small number of pissed off people matter very little.
    Rxpert83 likes this.
  21. EarlyMon

    EarlyMon The PearlyMon Moderator

    They do. Verizon can and has asked HTC to not make their unlocking tool available, and that's happened.
  22. EarlyMon

    EarlyMon The PearlyMon Moderator

    jmar, Slug, Rxpert83 and 1 other person like this.
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