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Root Review of steps to root and perform nandroid backup

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by mudking, Mar 17, 2011.

  1. mudking

    mudking Well-Known Member
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    I just have a couple questions because I am an Android Noob. I just got my Droid X this week, and I'm already itchin' to root. I'm hoping someone can review this to tell me if I even have a clue about what I'm doing here. I'm no programmer or computer expert, but I can handle this stuff pretty well with goog instruction. First of all, I am not looking to flash custom ROMS.....yet. I just want to root so I can have complete backups and and use "Copy Paste It". Really, I want the backups, I am totally paranoid about backing up my computers and phones. I'm sure after I get used to the platform, I will want more, but that's all I'm after right now, so that should make things simpler, I hope.

    My main goal right now is to get a good solid backup. My business partner has an X too, so I need to be able to make sure I have a backup of both phones on a regular basis. Of course, contacts and calendar are all synced with google, so I'm not so concerned about those. I'm just talking about system settings, widgets, apps, app setting, etc. A complete image would be ideal so we can both restore to our customized setups quickly if something goes wrong or we get new phones.

    So, I was looking at using Z4Root to root. Then, Droid X Bootstrapper to make a Nandroid backup. Finally, Titanium Backup for more regualr backups of apps and data. From what I understand, Z4Root is pretty straightforward, it either works or it doesn't. My Droid X is stock, running what it came with out of the box:
    System version 2.3.340.MB810.Verizon.en.US
    Adroid 2.2.1

    Everything I've read says that I shouldn't have a problem using Z4Root. Do I need to run OCLF Lag Fix too?

    Then, I install Droid X Bootstrapper and I found some great instructions here: http://www.droidxforums.com/forum/droid-x-hacking-guides/13485-how-use-droid-x-bootstrap.html

    I will follow those instructions as they seem to be perfect. Then, I can install Titanium Backup and do a less comprehensive backup of apps and data, right?

    Now, I want to make sure I can take my phone into Verizon for repairs or warranty work if need be. So, to do that, all I'd have to do is restore from my first Nandroid backup I did using Bootstrapper, and unroot using Z4Root, right? I understand that is assuming I haven't done something else to wreck the phone, at which point I'd have to do SBF flash. I really don't anticipate getting further into anything I don't understand, I just really want to start backing things up. Then, I have plenty of time to learn more before proceeding with things like flashing ROM, which I have no idea how to do right now.

    Is this as straightforward as it sounds? Or am I missing something here? I'd really appreciate some tips here because it is really overwhelming for a noob like me.

    Thanks
     

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  2. xliderider

    xliderider Android Expert
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  3. C0n57an71n3

    C0n57an71n3 Android Enthusiast
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    No lag fix. That's Galaxy only.
     
  4. mudking

    mudking Well-Known Member
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    Ok, I had seen the RoOoLeR guide before, thanks for reminding me about it. Problem was that I found it before I started reading up on everything several days ago and it was all Greek back then. Now, it made more sense because I have a little more knowledge to work from. Plus, I'm a visual learner, so it was really hard to understand these things until I took the plunge and did it following the steps in the guide. I just reviewed back through it and followed all the steps. So, I now have a rooted Droid X with a bootstrap backup and Titanium backups. I still have a few questions......

    First, a kind of stupid question. In the guide it says to change the name of your bootstrap backups, (do we actually call these nandroid backups?....Okay, that was 2 stupid questions)
    In that directory, I do see the backup, but that particualar path shows another folder, not a file. I am just supposed to change the name of the folder that is called "2011-03-17.18.59.49", right?

    Second, this backup, is it all inclusive? Like, does it include any user data? Or is it just the ROM that we are backing up? If it's just the ROM, it includes the bloatware, right? So if I delete the blockbuster app, for example, restoring from this backup would replace the blockbuster app, right? Jeez, I hope I'm on the right track here. (I also understand there are "freeze" options for apps which are probably better than deleting the bloatware, I just haven't gotten that far yet. Just trying to understand what exactly is backed up when and where)

    Finally, if I'm understanding things correctly here.....A nandroid backup will contain everything from the ROM. A backup made from Titanium that is called "backup all user apps plus data" will contain everything else. So, I could restore my device to it's exact state the way it is right now with all the widgets in place, calendar, contacts, apps and setting by just restoring from those 2 backups. Is that correct? If I follow this up by unrooting with Z4Root and deleting the Z4Root from my device, I can take it to Verizon without them telling me to go pound sand, right? Do I need to delete Superuser too?

    I'm continuing to read up more on everything. I appreciate the help here very much.
     
  5. cultldr

    cultldr Android Enthusiast
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    Nandroid is an exact snapshot at the time you did the backup. So if you have text messages for example, it has those messages in there but nothing new. It is an exact copy of your phone rom, apps, user data etc from the time you backed it up.

    If you do rename your backups, which i do, I usually leave date but put which Rom I'm backing up for example 2011-03-17.Apex141 etc, just don't put spaces or special characters, i usually stick with what they use, - and .

    z4root works great for rooting, just install then I would recommend rebooting then after the reboot go into the app and choose permanent root. I have not had any trouble doing that with my X, Galaxy Tab or gf's OG Droid.

    As for Titanium, I don't use it but there is a sticky that goes over how to use that. I switch roms a lot now and just download everything fresh each time.
     
  6. mudking

    mudking Well-Known Member
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    So, you install all your apps and settings manually every time? Did you find that you had problems restoring data to a new ROM? Or are you like me?......I love fresh installs. :)

    Oh, also.....since my nandroid backup is a complete backup, I can restore to it any time I want and it will be right back where I was? Even if I had a had a different ROM installed? Cool.
     
  7. cultldr

    cultldr Android Enthusiast
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    I found out by doing the fresh installs that I load a lot of stuff on and never use it lol so I just do it fresh each and every time. NOW that being said, I don't play angry birds so I don't care about the scores but if you have an app that you really want to keep that info, you have to back it up. But I've found for me, I just do a fresh each time and every two weeks or so I format my sdcard cuz it gets filled up with so much stuff flashing Rom after Rom, theme etc. I back the sdcard up before of course to bring back my pics and certain icons/ wallpapers etc.

    Yep the nandroid is complete and I actually have a stock one that is fully loaded with Bootstrapper, z4, root explorer etc. So when I want to change Roms, I restore that, then load the new Rom I want and then nandroid that as well, so it's a clean stock to a clean Rom. I have way too many backups but as we say, is there any such thing? :)

    Then as I load more stuff on, nandroiding along the way, if I have say 7 Apex and 5 Liberty Roms with various themes on there, I'll start to cull the older ones out. It works for me but everyone tweaks how they do it I'm sure. :)
     
  8. mudking

    mudking Well-Known Member
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    Ok, makes sense to me. Like I said, I am a backup freak. I love clean installs and many backups of them. I used to run deep freeze on my computer so I could have a fresh install every time I booted up. I finally gave that up because I was having to find loopholes for everything so I could operate the computer somewhat normally. Yeah, I'm a geek, I know.

    So, just so I understand one two more things......
    You can restore data, then flash the ROM and the data will still be there?
    Or do you have to flash ROM then restore data?

    And second thing.... To take my phone to Verizon for warranty issues, I can just:
    1.) restore to this nandroid backup I just made today
    2.) unroot the device with Z4Root
    3.) Delete the Z4Root application
    4.) and call it a day?

    Do I need to delete any other things before going in that would tip them off that the phone was rooted? Like busybox or superuser? What all needs to be taken off before I can go in and complain about something!

    By the way, I am loving this already. I know I'm just barely getting into this, but I can already see how glad I am for trading my Blackberry for a Droid X, what a difference!
     
  9. cultldr

    cultldr Android Enthusiast
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    When you flash a Rom you will usually do a wipe data / cache in clockwork so you would have to reinstall any apps you had and set the phone back up. Contacts and apps should come from your google login but if the apps didn't for some reason you would have to install them from the market. But yes you would have to get the apps back on that fresh Rom install.

    Your other question about having to take it back to VZW, google Maderstcok (this should be in RoOoLeR's guide in the sticky as well) and you can grab a file that will be used in clockwork. It will take your phone back to stock, remove clockwork, root etc so the phone is bone stock from what I've read. I haven't used it but it's very popular and seems to work great.
     
  10. mudking

    mudking Well-Known Member
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    Great, thanks! I'll look and see if that's what I need.

    Thanks so much for the assistance. Sometimes, even though there are excellent guides like RoOoLeR's, it still helps to have someone tell you it's okay, go for it!
     
  11. cultldr

    cultldr Android Enthusiast
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    Oh np at all :) I read this site and guides for probably a month and took the plunge and you're right, reading it is one thing, doing it quite the other. But once you do it and get some experience under your belt, you'll master it quickly and be the one telling others how pain free it is.

    So go for it :)

    OH one thing though, when you flash a Rom, even change something on a Rom like with Apex you can remove the clock thru the toolbox, it takes a while for the phone to get to the proper state where it's working as you think it should. Just be patient and let it go, it may sit on the boot animation etc for a long time. Let it finish and all should be fine.
     
  12. mudking

    mudking Well-Known Member
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    I have another question I can't find the answer to. Do I need to leave my Droid in debugging mode all the time now that it's rooted? I only see instructions to enable debugging mode when it's rooted, but nothing else about it.

    Also, if I wanted to have a backup of my apps so I can do fresh installs like you are doing, how can I backup the apk's? I have been reading about doing it through astro viewer, but I can't seem to navigate to the right directory. And I know it can be done from my titanium backups, but I want to just have a copy of the apk in a file on my pc, as a just in case sort of thing. I do have a backup of my card already, and it has my backups on it, but remember I am really particular about backups. You could almost call it an obsession.
     
  13. xliderider

    xliderider Android Expert
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    Just to clarify... the term nandroid is a carryover from an alternate recovery called SPRecovery by Sir Psycho. Unfortunately, everyone still refers to these alternate recovery backups as nandroid backups. It's like everyone calling facial tissue Kleenex. ;)
     
  14. xliderider

    xliderider Android Expert
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    In Astro, press Menu, Tools, select Application Manager/Backup. Astro will backup just the apk files to your sd card in a folder called Backups. Astro will not backup all apps though, some will say "Private" and won't let you back them up in Astro. That's why it is good to use Titanium as well.
     
  15. mudking

    mudking Well-Known Member
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    Great, thank you, that really helped. All of my apps were able to be selected for backup. I looked at the backup folder and noticed the names are not exactly easy to decipher. I will have to figure out which ones are which, but it looks like they all backed up! Thank you so much!
     

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