What’s the difference between HTC dev’s “unlock” and true unlocking?

Posted May 02, 2012 at 8:09 pm in Threads > Opinions

HTC dev’s bootloader unlock doesn’t truly unlock the bootloader, what does that mean?

  • Bpear96

    Its really s-on vs s-off, HTCdev bootloader unlocker toold, unlocks the bootloader by leaves S-ON on, well hackers/developers have developed means of unlocking even further and turning S-ON off. Which allows for a truly unlocked device

    ROOT means you have full control over the OS. From the OS, you can write to the recovery partition. Without root, the only way to write recovery is through hboot, which will only let you flash a custom recovery if you have S-OFF. But even with S-ON, you can write recovery from the OS if you have root. Then, with a custom recovery, you can write the hboot with an engineering bootloader, which has S-OFF. This way, you get S-OFF without a warranty-voiding watermark.

    S-OFF means you can flash a custom recovery or ROM from hboot. Things you could already do with root, except that it’s hard to get root while S-ON. But if you get it, you’re set.

    HTC says they’ll ship an update which sets S-OFF, and then we’re set, except their update will almost assuredly drop a watermark and void the warranty.

    ANALOGY: Say the phone is a fortress, and you’re trying to get in. S-ON means the gate is shut. If you root it with S-ON, you do it with an exploit, so you find a weak spot in the wall and pack it full of C4 and BOOM, you’re in. S-OFF means they opened the gate from the inside, and you just walked in. Either way (S-OFF or root) you’re in.

    SUMMARY: With S-OFF, you get everything. With root, you get everything. End of story.

    Final comment: rooting with S-ON means you used an exploit. Exploits are bad!! But HTC is forcing us to resort to such brutish, nasty means (blowing up walls to the fortress) because they locked the gate before selling us the place. We have a right to get inside, but they aren’t opening the gate, so we have to get in some other way. Remember, if you can blow up the wall and walk in, a malicious program can do so too. Exploits are bad, and HTC should patch them. But let’s get some legitimate use out of them first, ehhh?

    **from http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?p=15233640

    Also what the author didn’t mention is that

    • aaa

      all i want to do is uninstall other system apps which is uninstallable on stock phone, will this unlocking thingy will allow me to uninstall them without messing with my os?

  • ramdroid
  • Bpear96

    Its really s-on vs s-off, HTCdev bootloader unlocker toold, unlocks the bootloader by leaves S-ON on, well hackers/developers have developed means of unlocking even further and turning S-ON off. Which allows for a truly unlocked device

    ROOT means you have full control over the OS. From the OS, you can write to the recovery partition. Without root, the only way to write recovery is through hboot, which will only let you flash a custom recovery if you have S-OFF. But even with S-ON, you can write recovery from the OS if you have root. Then, with a custom recovery, you can write the hboot with an engineering bootloader, which has S-OFF. This way, you get S-OFF without a warranty-voiding watermark.

    S-OFF means you can flash a custom recovery or ROM from hboot. Things you could already do with root, except that it’s hard to get root while S-ON. But if you get it, you’re set.

    HTC says they’ll ship an update which sets S-OFF, and then we’re set, except their update will almost assuredly drop a watermark and void the warranty.

    ANALOGY: Say the phone is a fortress, and you’re trying to get in. S-ON means the gate is shut. If you root it with S-ON, you do it with an exploit, so you find a weak spot in the wall and pack it full of C4 and BOOM, you’re in. S-OFF means they opened the gate from the inside, and you just walked in. Either way (S-OFF or root) you’re in.

    SUMMARY: With S-OFF, you get everything. With root, you get everything. End of story.

    Final comment: rooting with S-ON means you used an exploit. Exploits are bad!! But HTC is forcing us to resort to such brutish, nasty means (blowing up walls to the fortress) because they locked the gate before selling us the place. We have a right to get inside, but they aren’t opening the gate, so we have to get in some other way. Remember, if you can blow up the wall and walk in, a malicious program can do so too. Exploits are bad, and HTC should patch them. But let’s get some legitimate use out of them first, ehhh?

    **from http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?p=15233640

    Also what the author didn’t mention is that kernel and radio flashing has to be done differently with s-on, basically with s-off you can flash a kernel and radio, right in a custom recovery (like cwm), but with s-on, you have to flash a kernel in htc’s HBOOT (bootloader), which use to be a pain, but now the developers have made scripts to make it much easier, but you still have to take a extra step and boot to hboot, after you flash rom. But really thats not that big of a deal.

    *So the main moral of all this is, with HTC S-ON unlocked bootloader you are basically fine, and can do all the stuff fully unlocked BL can do, except developers/hackers have to find a root exploit before you can really do anything, and that should not be necessary and can take some time to find a exploit, or it could never be found. Its like iOS jailbreak exploits, they take awhile to be found, can be patched with updates, and when new devices arrive it takes awhile to find new exploit. But with S-OFF you can flash CWM without having root first, then you can flash a custom kernel, or stock insecure kernel from CWM to achieve root without using a exploit.

    But having a unlocked bootloader with S-ON is still much better then a locked bootloader! IM looking at you MOTOROLA!!!

    • http://mihai.discuta-liber.com/ tmihai20

      Even if your device is S-ON and Android is not rooted, you can still flash a custom recovery using fastboot command. Root is needed by apps that flash recovery from within Android. My device has the bootloader unlocked, but I left it S-ON. I use fastboot command to flash the boot partition.

    • WlfHart

      Wow, quite informative. Thanks!

  • Anjie Cai

    Thanks, can you link me to he article that says HTC is having an update for s-off?

  • asapseven

    I hope they find a way to get s-off for the HTC EVO 4g LTE with software version 1.22.651.3 soon I want a fully rooted phone asap!

  • nouman

    i have htc wildfire s(marvel) boot unlocked but still with s-on !
    how can i s-off and root my phone?
    it’s really irritating . i’ve tried everything but every method seems to have a catch.
    can anyone give me complete guide step by step to do it?

    • SGB101

      Iirc you will get s-off by visiting the HTCdev site, enter your phone and country and then sort it for you. I used it with the One X before root, about April.

      • Mabbo

        You can root your phone with ‘Unrevoked3′ right now (it will also put cwm for recovery). If your HBoot is 1.01.0001 than you can use “Revolutionary” to get S-OFF. But if your HBoot is higher (or lower) than that than you will have to restore it to 1.01.0001 by use of “Buzzdowngrade”. That is it…….

      • Mabbo

        This is for nouman

        You can root your phone with ‘Unrevoked3′ right now (it will also put cwm for recovery). If your HBoot is 1.01.0001 than you can use “Revolutionary” to get S-OFF. But if your HBoot is higher (or lower) than that than you will have to restore it to 1.01.0001 by use of “Buzzdowngrade”. Once you got the right HBoot than you can run “Revolutionary” That is it…….

        I have done all that to my Wildfire and Installed a custom ROM (Cyanogen Mod7) with extra apps and changed the start-up screen. Now I am trying to get SIM-UNLOCK.

    • Mabbo

      You can root your phone with ‘Unrevoked3′ right now (it will also put cwm for recovery). If your HBoot is 1.01.0001 than you can use “Revolutionary” to get S-OFF. But if your HBoot is higher (or lower) than that than you will have to restore it to 1.01.0001 by use of “Buzzdowngrade”. After achieving the right HBoot you get S_OFF by “Revolutionary” That is it…….

      I have just done all that with my Wildfire …Changed the startup screen and loaded a better ROM (Cyanogen Mod7) with some extra apps…now I am trying to get SIM_UNLOCK

  • Pramod Shinde

    Quite informative thanks for that.

    Can you please tell me the procedure How I can root my HTC Desire S? I want to port Primo-S cutom ROM on my phone

    Regards,
    Pramod

  • Akif shaikh

    I have locked S-ON HTC wildfire. My question is that how can I flash a custom rom?

  • williz

    can i install ics rom leak on my droid incredible2 whiles s-off but not rooted?

  • Ghanshyam Bhavsar

    I unlocked the bootloader for my htc desire c using this hasoons toolkit and checked is rooting successful or not on root checker it said ur rooting is unsuccessful. Is there a difference between unlock bootloader and root… and how to root with this toolkit to increase ram from 512mb to 1gb…explain….