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Google Cellphones Handhelds Hardware Hacking Build News

Just Days After Release, Google's Nexus 4 Has Already Been Rooted 85

An anonymous reader writes "Google's Nexus 4 sold out around the world very quickly this week, and while there was talk of very limited supply, apparently some key people managed to get their hands on it. That's right: the Nexus 4 has already been rooted."
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Just Days After Release, Google's Nexus 4 Has Already Been Rooted

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  • Rubbish (Score:5, Informative)

    by ConallB ( 876297 ) on Saturday November 17, 2012 @07:19AM (#42011161)

    Entering the command "fastboot oem unlock" using ADB is what enables custom firmware and bootloaders to be flashed. This is hardly a revelation. In fact, this is how you unlock many Motorola devices and others. Saying it has "already been rooted", as if there was some kind of elaborate hack or cleverness involved is simply wrong. Thats like saying by taking off your training wheels yo9u somehow rooted your bicycle.

  • Re:Why is this news? (Score:5, Informative)

    by movrev ( 1901148 ) on Saturday November 17, 2012 @07:29AM (#42011203)
  • Re:Why is this news? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Psychotria ( 953670 ) on Saturday November 17, 2012 @07:32AM (#42011213)

    Isn't this supposed to be dead easy?

    It's not news. Clueless journalist and an even more clueless Timothy for accepting this as a story. But, hey, what else should we expect?

  • Missing the point (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 17, 2012 @08:21AM (#42011329)

    Yes they are easy to root, but you still have to know what to do once the bootloader is unlocked, meaning flashing Clockworkmod, installing the superuser or supersu apk and such.

  • Re:I don't get it (Score:5, Informative)

    by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Saturday November 17, 2012 @09:13AM (#42011507)

    Open and Rooted are two different things.

    The Nexus is not Rooted from the start.
    Rooted means that apps and the user may have superuser access to the system. Much like running as root in Linux this is generally not something that is needed for day to day usage. There's very few things that actually require root access to your phone. Some of the things I can think of is the ability to modify and delete system applications, write custom settings to the kernel (overclock, enable different schedulers etc), and modify system files like the hosts file. Some of these are used by things like adblockers, and as for the rest... well lets just say with a rooted phone you actually can damage the hardware if you do something wrong. Rooting often involves flashing a custom kernel to the phone. To do this requires an unlocked bootloader which many devices don't have and where a lot of the hacking really takes place (see next comment).

    The Nexus is Open from the start.
    What Open means is that there are no additional lockdowns over what is the vanilla Android experience. There's no carrier apps that can't be uninstalled, no customisations, and most importantly there's an accepted, endorsed and well documented method of unlocking the bootloader on the device after which you can effectively do whatever the heck you want to it including rooting, or even installing a completely different Android operating system like Cyanogenmod.

    The only thing here that I don't get is why this garbage that passes as journalism thinks this is a worthy story. Effectively the Nexus 4 has had the ability to be rooted long before it's release given how the latest JellyBean has kernels that incorporate root access in the wild since day one, and that unlocking the bootloader to install it is as easy as using ADB to send the command "fastboot oem unlock" to the phone, just like with every previous Nexus device.

To write good code is a worthy challenge, and a source of civilized delight. -- stolen and paraphrased from William Safire