Thursday, August 16, 2012

Rezound ICS Linking Fixed!!

After the recent over-the-air upgrade of my HTC Rezound to Ice Cream Sandwich, I found that an important feature of Android (and indeed of every operating system) no longer worked: clicking links no longer launched the application responsible for handling that type of link.

I found the problem written up on Talk Android and realized I had a couple of choices:

  1. I could restore my Rezound back to Gingerbread (Oh no you can't)
  2. I could root my phone and make the fix.

As technical as I am, rooting is still kind of scary/daunting. I was really wishing I could go back to Gingerbread. But the Ice Cream Sandwich is so tasty! So root it would be.

My first search led me to an extremely helpful guide on Android Forums. I followed the instructions there for unlocking my bootloaded using htcdev, a tool that HTC provided. One thing I should say here is when the instructions call for using adb on the PC, you want your phone to be up and running and plugged into your PC. If you're using fastboot on the PC, your phone will want to be in the fastboot state, which, as much as it should have been obvious to me, wasn't at first.

Then I installed Amon Ra as my recovery, and I'm linking to it because that's proper, but you really should go to Android Forums and read up on all of this.

And next, to be honest, I wasn't quite sure what to do. I was under the FALSE impression that you needed to flash a ROM to be root. Don't know why I thought that, but it's not the case.

But where I ended up at this point was really great, the All-In-One Tool. It would have done the bootloader unlocking for me if I hadn't done that already. It also does five flavors of recovery flashing, which I wasn't needing at that point. What I did need, though, was Super User. And the instructions were muddy clear, so let me add some advice about that. You want to run the Perm Root (GB/ICS) command while the phone is plain old up and running, since adb is used to push a zip file, It's after that file has been pushed that you want to reboot into recovery and use that recovery's zip installer. The output of the Perm Root command tends to give the impression that you're already rooted, but that's not the case until you've used recovery to do the installation of the zip.

So now I was rooted, but I wasn't done. I had copied /system/build.prop to my desktop, made the necessary edits* and pushed it back to my phone as /sdcard/, but I needed to put it back into /system. To do this, I used Mount /system (rw / ro) to make /system writable and I used Root Explorer (File Manager) to move to /system, rename build.prop to build.prop.old and finally rename to build.prop.

*Oh, and by the way, I found "ro.da1.enable" in build.prop twice, so I just made all of the changes twice.

Once I rebooted my phone, the good old linking behavior was fixed. Just as for centuries, clicking a Microsoft Word Document link on my desktop browser has always launched Microsoft Word, clicking on an Amazon MP3 link now launches the Amazon MP3 app, just as the gods intended.

Now that I'm able to declare victory, thanks to lots of help from the Internets, I'm off to click some thank-you and donation buttons.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Screen capture!

My HTC Rezound has been upgraded (ha!!) to Ice Cream Sandwich, and I wondered whether screen shots might be possible. It is!! Just power/vol- and voila!!