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Should I root? (Samsung Galaxy Nexus GSM)

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by VincentAnoid, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. VincentAnoid

    VincentAnoid Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    I think I'm getting paranoid with my phone getting image retention which could potentially lead to burn in. I've only had this phone for about a month and I can see the band where the soft key navigation bar is down at the bottom of the screen when I load a white page and switch into landscape.

    FOR: I'm not an expert with the rooting and stuff with phones but I have done my research with rooting, although I have never tried it myself. And yes I know the only way to brick a device is to flash a new ROM on it without backing up. I've seen some of the custom ROMS for the Galaxy Nexus on the internet and I must say a lot of them look better than the original stock interface, more futuristic looking. LiquidSmooth looks nice.

    DRAWBACKS: I'm a bit sceptical to rooting etc. and doing these things to my NEW phone, warranty is voided right? Also its unlikely that people can create ROMS as good as Google's stock one right? They're the makers of the phone, and multinational business worth billions with loads of developers (Trusted). And what about viruses (In ROMS and vulnerability to Apps as 'Superuser' privillages granted) and updates, will I still get the official Android updates in time from Google like everyone else (Unrooted)? I mean a selling point for the Galaxy Nexus is the software support from Google, why would I want to get rid of this software for something else, the old Galaxy S users should be wanting to root for these new up to date ICS UI right? I'm literally throwing something away that I paid for, Google support.

    I know this is a very controversial with people and I wish to look for opinions and I know its a lot to read! Thanks for any replies that come in advance :)

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  2. DannyJSlone

    DannyJSlone Android Enthusiast

    I am by no means an expert at rooting but I used wugfresh to root my phone and I am so glad I did. Wugfresh also allows you to unroot it and return it to stock so your warranty would still be honored. It's very easy to do. The program does it all for you. The roms out for this phone are amazing and run much better than my stock did. Also I upgraded the radios and eliminated my data problems for the most part. There are many roms that are basically ICS with more customization. I am so glad I rooted and I am not looking back.
  3. quiklives

    quiklives Android Enthusiast

    I think most (if not all) of the custom ROMs are better than stock. I marvel at this pretty regularly, especially when it comes to updates...it seems like the bigger the organization, the slower they are to get things right.

    Remember, though, that these ROMs are building on top of what Google has already made, too, so they can just make the improvements, they don't have to build the OS from scratch.

    Personally, I'm a big rooting advocate. Yes, it technically voids your warranty. But with this phone, as long as it turns on, i.e. it's not completely lifeless, it can be returned to stock, unrooted and unlocked. And I have yet to see a single GNex on this forum that was deemed totally bricked due to rooting, etc. If it was that easy to do, someone would have managed by now. :)

    As far as I know, you still lose everything, including "sdcard" contents, when you unlock the bootloader, so there's that to consider. Back up everything you can to your computer before attempting.

    I don't think you paid anything extra for Google support, but you're not exactly throwing it away. Any time a new update comes out or even is leaked, it makes it into ROM updates way faster than it goes OTA to unrooted phones. Now, that puts the responsibility on you to keep up with ROM updates if you want them on your phone, but honestly, that's not so bad - in fact, it becomes kind of addictive. If you load a ROM,no, you won't get the OTA updates as they come, but as I said, they tend to make it into ROMs before they get pushed out anyway. If you just root, you can accept the OTAs but they will unroot you.

    In 2+ years of rooting my Android phones, I have never once had a virus problem. I'm not saying they don't exist, but honestly, they're rare, and anyone smart enough to seek out help in the forums is probably smart enough not to install the obvious shmuckbait that most of these viruses live in.

    For that other rare occurrence, I do keep Lookout on my phone (more for the lost/stolen thing, but it serves both purposes).

    As for ROMs, I've never used Liquidsmooth but have seen a lot of love for it here. I run AOKP, and I think it's fantastic. I've never had a problem with burn in, but AOKP allows you to change the color of your nav buttons, so that may help with that. Do you have your screen on a lot?

    Incidentally, I think Liquid comes with Leankernel, which is excellent on battery for most people, and I think the gain in battery life alone is reason enough to root. :)

    Hope some of this helped. Happy to discuss it more if you like.
  4. Cbrown

    Cbrown Member

    Thanks for the heads up on wugfresh. DLing it now.
  5. VincentAnoid

    VincentAnoid Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    Seems true but not always because I find Google's services (Youtube, Search engine, Picasa, G+) very comprehendable to work together. But I guess that puts them out there to be busy handling other problems that are more mainstream.

    The thing I find with the custom ROMS are that their websites look cheap and not well moderated etc. I find it unconvincing and as I'm used to seeing websites like these being cheap scams. Google Adsense feel to the sites. I've looked at the AOKP site too, well that looks a bit more professional to Liquid Smooth however I feel there needs to be a trusted brand involved. Like Google needs to put it as a recommendation from themselves, I feel the same with apps from the Google Play Store.

    Yes I will back-up, I've also heard of Titanium back up too which is regularly talked about on here. That makes something called "Nandroids" to back up the whole system, including current settings and installed apps?

    I don't mean to say that custom ROMS are worse than the stock ROM therefore it is throwing it away. But I could flash a cheap Galaxy Mini with the same ROMS right? So I kind of feel like I shouldn't touch my phone with this stuff, takes the "Pure Google Experience" out of the Google phone if you know what I mean. I never knew installing updates OTA would unroot my phone :( and I dislike how I would have download the latest ROMS on computer. I'm so lazy with the cables sometimes I just email myself stuff :D

  6. VincentAnoid

    VincentAnoid Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    Ah I've just uninstalled my Avast Antivirus, didn't like it as a running process and I think its probably like you said unnecessary. I really don't install much on my phone so I'll leave it for later. The worry I have with unrooted my phone and security is that I know I'm granted "Superuser" privillages. This means if there was to be a virus it could do much more damage? I'm also a bit of perfectionist with settings which effect me, so I would check thoroughly with them, not a good idea as I've seen so many settings in Youtube clips of custom ROMS. I'd be there all day messing with clockspeeds etc.

    And yeah the main cause for me wanting to root my phone was the functions of full screen and removing the navigation buttons/transparent. I have another thread and someone suggested it to me. My screen is on quite a bit, I browse the web for research, check social apps, look through the Play Store.

    My battery life seems to be fine at the moment, 2-3 days with 4-5 hours on screen time. I've heard of 4.04 Android version which apparently has battery improvements too. I'm still on 4.02, being fully stock :p OTA..zz but I don't mind too much.

    Thanks for your time, and I didn't reply earlier because I was tired and could never write a post this lengthly in that frame of mind.

  7. pcloadletter

    pcloadletter Newbie

    Unlocked and 4.04, no root has been good enough for me. There are so many roms, it may be hard to find a good one. If you have the time, go for it.
  8. quiklives

    quiklives Android Enthusiast

    Sounds like you're getting amazing battery life out of the box, far better than I was. That's great, but in general, yes, a custom kernel (included with ROMs, or standalone) would probably improve on that even more.

    Even if your phone is rooted, each individual app has to be granted superuser permissions. This isn't as annoying as it sounds; the first time you open an app that requires root, it will give you a little popup asking if you want to allow it. You can choose to allow it once, or tick a little box to remember the answer. I almost always tick the box, because if I trust an app to have root once, odds are I'm going to need it to keep doing what it's doing. So unless you manually granted the app root permission, you shouldn't be in any more danger with a virus-laden app than if you were unrooted.

    I use Airdroid to move the files over to my phone from my computer, but in theory you can browse to them on your phone and download them from there as well. It's generally better practice to download them on the computer, as it's easier to check the md5 sums (and make sure that the file downloaded correctly, so you're not trying to run a corrupted file on your phone).

    The other option here is to wait for (for instance) Milestone 5 on AOKP, or whatever equivalent other ROMs use, as the milestone releases don't introduce new features from the most recent builds, but instead are focused on being as stable as humanly possible. They update more rarely, but that may not matter if you're happy with one, anyway.

    A "nandroid" is actually the backup you create in custom recovery. It's basically an image of your whole system (including homescreens, apps and settings, as well as ROM/kernel version) at that moment, so if a flash somehow goes wrong (usually human error, we all miss a step once in a while) you can simply revert back to how your phone was before you started the flash.

    Titanium is used to backup your actual apps and data, and I have it, but I use it selectively. The source of a lot of frustration for a lot of people is just selecting "restore all apps and data" in Titanium. You don't want to restore system apps, only the ones you downloaded, but it is definitely the best way to get your apps back intact after a flash & wipe.

    Just to be clear, I'm not actually trying to convince you; if you're honestly not sure, I'd say don't do it. Having a rooted phone really is a responsibility, in my opinion. I just want to offer as much information as I can, because while there are some really good guides here on the forums and elsewhere on the net of the technical stuff - the step-by-step - I would have liked to have more discussion available about the overview, the jargon, etc, when I was first thinking of rooting (my Droid X, at that time).
  9. VincentAnoid

    VincentAnoid Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    Yeah I've noticed a dramatic improvement after using the battery for a month. I use the 2G only option and turn NFC off (Society needs to keep up with NFC :p), with GPS and WIFI when not needed. I also have very few apps running in the background.

    Thanks for the info on the apps and permissions, I would have never knew. Just looked at Airdroid and it looks nice with reviews, something I would really need to transfer without cables :)

    Why wouldn't I want to use "restore all apps and data" in Titanium? Has it been upsetting loads of people with closing their personal preferences they set before.

    It does seem like a large chore for me, there are enough worries with drivers and settings on a computer for me before that set off my OCD. I don't want to be OCD'ing about 'Superuser' settings yet. Not when its so close to my A level exams :(

    Thanks again,

  10. quiklives

    quiklives Android Enthusiast

    Restoring all apps and data in Titanium loads another copy of the system apps on top of the ones already there, so it almost always screws up your data connectivity and the Google apps.

Galaxy Nexus Forum

The Galaxy Nexus release date was November 2011. Features and Specs include a 4.65" inch screen, 5MP camera, 1GB RAM, TI OMAP 4460 processor, and 1750mAh battery.

November 2011
Release Date
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