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We are what we think & my blog entries reflect how I think. Have a sip of the poison of my mind.. It's not always lethal.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Rooting My Galaxy Note 8.0

Take a bite out of a supposedly forbidden fruit and if it tastes really good, chances are that you will help yourself with a second munch. And a third chomp after. You get the idea.

I wasn't actually talking about actual fruits or food there (you have Facebook for that; which has basically transformed itself into a freaking restaurant menu for the most part where gluttony is always the order of the day, burying deep and insightful expressions of thoughts and discussions under layers of fat and cholesterol. In the case and experience of yours truly, deep insight on Facebook already took a hike since.. well, since months before I finally decided to hose my Facebook account and move on to much cleaner pastures where folks still bother to ponder about topics and issues beyond gluttony and forced photographic duck faces.

Your Facebook level of horror may vary of course. On the whole though, substance has become like a lost art these days but then again, Sturgeon's Law constitutes a huge chunk of Life and I suppose it needs to have its own social media account too.

Anyway, getting back on track: I'm talking about rooting my Galaxy Note 8.0 tablet here which I bought just 2 days ago. Rooting my Note 8 just now was my third chomp out of the supposedly 'forbidden Android fruit'. I took the first bite out of it when I rooted my Galaxy Note 2 and my second munch followed when I rooted my Nexus 7.

I'm not the sort who would take a third, much less a second bite out of something if it didn't taste good from the get-go. Whoever came out with the saying regarding the lasting significance of first impressions must have been an empathetic, observant, aware and battle-scarred guru of Life or something.

Why rooting my devices was like experiencing good taste is already covered in my Note 2 and Nexus 7 rooting blog entries linked above and so, I shouldn't repeat myself here, since I don't think I'm that old enough to start being repetitively naggy yet. So if you haven't read them yet, feel free to go click-happy on them hyperlinks.

There are more than one way to skin a cat, they say, and my initial idea was to use the Note 8.0 Toolkit to root my tablet and flash Clockwork Mod Recovery on it so that I could use it to flash this ROM - an initial idea I had to give up on because when I reached the stage when the Toolkit fired up Odin, Odin couldn't detect my Note 8. However, when I switched to the USB cable that came with my Note 8 and launched Odin independently of the Toolkit, it detected my device without a hitch.

Since I can get paranoid am real careful about such matters, I decided to use Odin independently from the Toolkit and that meant finding the appropriate individual rooting files instead of relying on the Toolkit's.

So I closed the Toolkit and off I went to the big bad Internet to do some hunting and came across this Note 8 rooting guide which also provides the download links to the necessary rooting and Clockwork Mod Recovery files. Talk about killing two birds with a single webpage.

By the way, all the talks above about skinning cats and killing birds are just figures of speech and I happen to love animals.

So I flashed the rooting files using Odin and successfully got my tablet rooted, followed by flashing ClockWorkMod Recovery that also went without a hitch. I could now proceed to flash the ROM with ClockWork, which was what I did next. The ROM uses Aroma Installer which is quite the user-friendly and idiot-proof installation user interface (what tech-heads call 'U.I.' for short - for the benefit of non-techy readers who are not sure what U.I. means).

Using Aroma Installer is a breeze when it comes to choosing which feature / app you want or do not want to install. This is the stage where you can choose not to install anything you consider as bloatware, which under default out-of-the-box unrooted circumstances, you can't uninstall and have to live with, even if you never use them. So it goes without saying that I couldn't help but found myself smugly smirking when I unchecked the boxes next to those features and apps which came by default but which I didn't want living in my device.

Zap zap zap, Smirk smirk smirk.

Gosh, it feels great and liberating snatching the reins and being in control. It's my own personal device which I've paid with my own moolah after all, so I'm calling the shots. No qualms, no apologies, no shame, no bloat. Fuck Yeah.

By the way, you can still get rid of bloatware anytime you wish to with Titanium Backup after you are rooted, so you don't have to rush yourself into making hasty decisions. I will venture to say that Titanium Backup is an absolute must-have rooted app. Not only can it get rid of bloat, it also allows you to backup and restore app data. You wouldn't want to start your games from scratch all over again after having invested a considerable amount of time game-farming and building levels following a system wipe or factory reset, would you? The same importance can also be weighted upon messaging apps with conversations you would like to back up, for example. The free version of Titanium Backup allows you to do all that. A shout-out here and kudos to the developers.

After choosing what can live in my tablet and what gets zapped outside the gate with Aroma Installer (I enjoyed myself playing my own gate-keeper), the ROM began installing and suddenly, the tablet screen displayed an orange Andy with a Captain Sparrow eye patch (Andy is Android's robot mascot which is actually green all over without any eye patches in its original appearance). Something told me that what I was witnessing on my tablet's screen wouldn't stay on the screen for too long, so I quickly grabbed my Note 2 and snapped a photo of it:

Sure enough, it disappeared right after I took the shot. I'm still puzzled and amused about how and why I knew in my gut that the image would go away fast. I didn't even pause to read the words flashing across the screen. My gut senses actually prompted me not to bother with the camera focusing or I would miss snapping the image, so my apologies regarding the blurry state of the photo above. How creepy. Anyway, the ROM installed smoothly.

Mission accomplished. I'm now off to download and install things like Titanium Backup, Xposed Framework, Greenify, ES File Explorer and other essential apps specifically designed for rooted Android devices and apps which have expanded extra useful functionalities for rooted devices.

Android - be it pure or skinned, allows your spirit of adventure, spirit of experimentation and spirit of discovery to take flight. Even for someone who is a normal non-techy and non-tinkling user, his or her Android device can provide for such fun should he or she ever needs to. Until then, such provision lies beneath the surface of the operating system quietly, ready to erupt like a volcano when you decide to open the lid. And when you do, everything adds up as a great learning experience whether you succeed or not in whatever you wish to accomplish, since even failure is a teacher.

The word 'Adventurous' starts with the letter 'A' and so does 'Android'.

-De Lion Speaks

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