Thursday, February 16, 2012

CyanogenMod Recovery

The other day I picked up my phone and it was sitting at the CyanogenMod 7 boot screen. The blue arrow just going around and around and around. Completely out of the blue, considering it had been running apps when it was put down.

It was quite a saga to get it back up and running again. I went through lots of flashing and many different types of boot loops. The problem was, I could not get into recovery mode. So, I tried flashing ClockworkMod recovery. That caused a boot loop. Installed Froyo, boot loop. Then I installed a different Froyo, cwm and tried flashing CM7 again. Boot loop. Finally, I got it with Froyo, SuperOneClick root, ROM Manager, cwm recovery, CM7.

I thought I was done, but this is really where things got interesting. ROM Manager would no longer boot into recovery, so I couldn’t install the Google Apps. No google apps means you don’t get Android Market, etc… I tried upgrading ROM Manager via a apk downloaded from their site, but that didn’t work. Next I tried flashing cwm again, but that wouldn’t work.

Here are the things I learned along the way that would have shortened the trip considerably:
  1. Getting into recovery mode via the 3 button method is subtly different than download mode. Hold down Power, Volume Up and Home until the Samsung screen comes up, then let go of the Power button. Continue to hold the other two buttons until you are in recovery. It appears I may have been letting go of the power button a little too quickly, assuming it worked just like download mode. It does not. I believe the two are available at different periods of the boot up sequence.
  2. CM7 installs its own version of cwm recovery. This breaks the existing one you have and makes it unavailable from ROM Manager. You can access it via the Power button menu. Select Reboot then Recovery.
  3. You can re-enable the ROM Manager recovery menu by going into the “Flash ClockworkMod Recovery” menu item, selecting “Samsung GalaxyS i9000 (MTD)”, click Yes to the question asking if you’ve installed a cwm based recovery manually (you have, the cm7 one), then select ClockworkMod 2.x. You can now reboot into it from the “Reboot into Recovery” menu.
Of course, all of this advice is pretty specific to my model of phone, but I had to cobble it together from a bunch of sources, so hopefully I can save someone some time.

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