How to root an xperia play? (I'm new to android)

Discussion in 'Android' started by Taleweaver, Sep 29, 2012.

  1. Taleweaver
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    Member Taleweaver Storywriter

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    Hi guys,

    I bought an xperia play a few weeks back. Nice little thingy. Good for gaming. I wasn't going to root it (I thought). But then it turns out it has a bunch of bloatware on it that I can't seem to remove. Other tricks, like changing the display resolution, also need root access. Or even updating to android 4.0 (the thing said it had that update ready when I first connected it to my wi-fi...but at the end I was still at 2.3.4)

    So I looked around. Found things like superoneclick, "unlock root" and a few others. But despite their description claiming to work instantly, they did nothing ("now attempting zergling rush...could not get shell access". Something like that).

    Of course, I realise now that that update I did was probably not a smart idea. But then again, after reading this link and realising my phone was (probably) vulnerable*, things don't quite add up. So I can't get root access because whatever exploit was used (zerglingrush?) is fixed...but it's still open to be completely wiped by accessing a few lines of HTML code? :unsure:

    And perhaps I'm drawing too much on my wii experience, but it seems to me that in order to have the best backup protection (titanium backup), you'll need to have root access to begin with (kinda like the catch-22 on a wii where you need to use an exploit to install bootmii to have proper protection).


    Either way...does anyone know how to help with this? :)
    Oh: it's a R800i on android 2.3.4. Kernel version is 2.6.32.9-perf

    If you need more info, please lemme know.


    Note that I'm new to android. I don't know how to do much more than install and use apps yet.




    *I installed 'dialer one' now.
     
  2. Clarky

    Member Clarky Don't you know who I think I am?

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    go here, the small guide there should tell you how to flash your phone and gain root access. You will need to use your pc and hook your phone up by usb to do it though
     
  3. Tom Bombadildo

    Contributor Tom Bombadildo Honk!

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    Your best bet is to check out XDA Developers for anything Android related, they'll help you with anything you need.

    As for backups and such, Titanium Backup is one of the greatest apps for it, it's never let me down. But if you're going to change things on your phone as well, ALWAYS make sure you do a nandroid backup using whatever custom recovery is install on your phone. This backups the entire system in case something goes wrong and you can just restore straight from it if you need to.

    As for installing apps and things, it's literally one of the simplest things. All you need to do is download whatever app you want, put it on your phone, and then install it by using a file manager (ES File Explorer is the best). As long as you have "Install from Unknown Sources" checked in...security settings? Maybe? Then you can install whatever apps you want. You should also note you don't need to be rooted to install apps like that either.
     
  4. Taleweaver
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    Member Taleweaver Storywriter

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    http://gbatemp.net/topic/335146-how-to-root-an-xperia-play-im-new-to-android/


    I already came across that page once or twice. I was (and to be honest: still am) a bit skeptical, as it was a beta from over a year ago. If more recent progs don't work, why should this one do?

    And that 'small guide' is a bit of an understatement.

    "To test use this command:
    fastboot boot recoveryPLAY.img"

    First I had to find a guide on its own to know how to actually make it do something (linky). And right now, all it's doing is "".

    Google results say it's something of a driver issue, but everything else works fine (I'm on windows 7 32-bit). I guess I'll have to start looking from here, later.


    @[member='Suprgamr232']: the problem with that forum is that I can't really follow what they are saying. They assume everyone knows what they're talking about, and I can't really blame them that they won't explain all the terms every freakin' time. That's why I posted here: it may not give the most advanced results, but at least I'll be able to understand them. ;)

    For the rest of your post, thanks, but...it wasn't needed. I know of titanium backup. It requires root. Which is the reason I started this thread. And I DO know ho to install all apps (in fact: ES File Explorer is one of 'em). It's the removing that I have issues with (a touch-screen only version of tetris? A trial version of some office suite? a calculator when I've got Mobicalc? And so on).
     
  5. Clarky

    Member Clarky Don't you know who I think I am?

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    hello....right, device not being found...have you turn on dev debug on under the usb options? that allows the phone to be taken control of over usb and be re-programmed. Drivers though, from the 2 phones I have done I found the best drivers to use are from pc client software packages (htc had some sync software for a desire phone, samsung had some kies software for there galaxy) so whatever the xperia uses, try installing that and it should hopefully do the drivers. any more issues let us know
     
  6. Taleweaver
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    Member Taleweaver Storywriter

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    Sorry...no luck there. The developer debug option is on (so is data transfer mode and even wi-fi and bluetooth).


    There's this package called "Sony PC Companion" that installed pretty much automatically. It finds and checks the phone for updates as well. And the client program is the latest one (2.10.94). It's also syncing my stuff and can find the phone without issues. Finally...checked the interface drivers, and those are also up to date (sony sa0102 ADB Interface driver).

    Still the "waiting for devices" thing, through. :unsure:
     
  7. SifJar

    Member SifJar Not a pirate

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    The Play (and other Xperia devices) are a bit annoying in that they don't have a recovery partition. This means you can either run recovery via the method you mentioned above (fastboot boot recoveryPLAY.img), or you can install a custom kernel with a built in recovery. This second option is the newer one, which is usually recommended. I can't get links right now, but I should get a chance to do so tomorrow if no one else has by then.

    Once you're in recovery, you can "flash" a zip file, which on Android basically means extracting the zip and copying certain files from it to your phone (this is done automatically by the recovery), and in this case will copy the files needed for root. Then your phone is "rooted".

    EDIT: note that for fastboot to detect your phone, your phone must be in "fastboot mode". Generally this requires holding some button combo while turning on the phone. If you're not doing that, that'd be why fast is giving the "waiting for device" message
     
  8. Taleweaver
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    Member Taleweaver Storywriter

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    Interesting. Let's see what I've managed so far...

    (google searches) That 'fastboot' option on an xperia play is by turning the phone off and holding the search button while plugging it in. It tried to install some drivers (S1Boot Fastboot) but failed. After some searching, I got around to this page. The tutorial itself didn't really work (read-only file system...spoiler below for those interested in details), but it did install those drivers I needed. Unfortunately, that didn't change the result fastboot gave me. Even when the phone is in fastboot mode connected. :unsure:


    I'm not so sure about installing a custom kernel, but then again: it probably sounds more intimidating than it really is.

    Thanks for the help, in any case. :)



    Warning: Spoilers inside!
     
  9. SifJar

    Member SifJar Not a pirate

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    Installing a custom kernel isn't necessary if you don't want to, you can always just run recovery via fastboot if you ever need it again. In fact, I'd probably advise against a custom kernel for now, anyway. It's not that intimidating (I just installed one on my phone for the first time), but there's no point bothering with it if all you want is root.

    First things first, follow this to unlock your bootloader: http://forum.xda-dev...d.php?t=1662199

    This should hopefully get the drivers all set up nicely. Then download "RootXperia.zip" from this post: http://forum.xda-dev...d.php?t=1130639, as well as CWM Recovery from the same post.

    Place "RootXperia.zip" on the root of your SD card, then turn the phone off, start it in fastboot mode and run the command "fastboot boot recoveryPLAY.img" from a command prompt. Your phone should then enter into the recovery. The controls for recovery are mentioned in the post linked above. Navigate to "Install ZIP from SD card", and then choose "RootXperia.zip". It'll ask if you're sure, select yes. Wait for it to finish (should only take a second or two), then you can choose "Power Off" from recovery and start your phone normally.

    Try running a root app and see if it works. (Or else install "Terminal Emulator" from the Play Store and open it, then type "su". If your phone is properly rooted, it should change the $ prompt to a # [after asking you for root permissions).

    EDIT: Reading back a little in this thread, I notice you say you're sceptical of this method as it's old; it'll work just fine, the low level stuff it relies on hasn't been changed, and won't be.
     
  10. Taleweaver
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    Member Taleweaver Storywriter

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    Okay...it took some more effort, but I managed to do it. :)

    Unlocking the bootloader was just a matter of following the tutorial (and remembering to cut the last number of the IMEI). After checking, I thought things would be easy...but the "" message was still there (AAAAARGGGG!!!). Worse: I think I accidentally pushed another button while powering on at one time, as suddenly the phone was all the way back to factory settings (damn...luckily, I hadn't lost any non-freeware apps, so it's mostly just setting things back up as it was).


    Anyway...on to the rooting. Somewhat of a last gambit, I pulled an old windows XP laptop from beneath the dust. Installed drivers onto that, tried fastboot again...and then it simply worked. It booted in recovery, installing the zip and everything else worked fine. Installed titanium backup and gave it root access when it asked to. So in the end, the thing is rooted. :)

    So...all I can say is a big thank you for everyone responding (especially SifJar). It's much appreciated. :D
     
  11. SifJar

    Member SifJar Not a pirate

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    Glad you got it working eventually. The only thing I can think of for why it didn't work on the first computer; perhaps the computer has a 64-bit processor & OS, and the driver was 32-bit, and wasn't compatible?
     
  12. Terminator02

    Member Terminator02 ヽ( 。 ヮ゚)ノ

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    He said he was on Windows 7 32-bit, it's weird that he couldn't get it working.
     
  13. SifJar

    Member SifJar Not a pirate

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    Oops, I missed that. Yeah, it is weird then.
     

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