Responsible Rooting or Rooting for the Rest of Us

By: Russell H, Senior Editor, TDG Online

Responsible Rooting, or Rooting for the rest of us

Root Access, a topic as old as Android itself, gets a refresh every time a new device comes out. Controlling your device on an Administrator (Super User, as it’s known in Linux) level is significant for many Android users. In fact, the mantra “You don’t own your phone without root” has echoed through dozens of forums every week. Rooting is not nearly as easy for some Android devices as it is for other, so it is important to engage in Responsible Rooting.

Before I get into how, I want to address the cost common questions I see:

Rooting is beneficial for everyone: It’s not just for “techies” and “geeks” There are apps in the market that require root access in order to properly function. Examples are LED Torch, where the flash from your camera can be controlled for light. There are apps that can do this without Root, but the light can be much brighter with it. Additionally, screenshot apps and free wireless tether for non-Froyo users also require Root.

Rooting is 100% legal: A recent modification to the language within the Digital Millennium Copyright Act has made not only rooting, but applying mods and even other operating systems (as long as they are legally obtained) completely legal.

Root can be removed: if for any reason you feel you are uncomfortable with Super User access to your mobile device, there are steps to “unroot” your phone, and they can usually be found right next to the instructions to root.

If by now you have decided to Root, it’s now time to do some research. If you are running an EVO, Desire, Incredible, Hero, or Aria, the amazing team at unrEVOked has published a 1-click root program for Windows, Mac, and Linux.

if you are running the new Droid X, 1-click root also exists, thanks to the guys at AllDroid have you covered. If you are not running one of these devices, step-by-step instructions can be found at either XDA or ModMyMoto. No matter where you decide to go, it’s important to keep a few things in mind:

Read. Then read it again: The instructions are clear, but must be followed to the letter. If you do not fully understand the instructions, do not be afraid to ask questions on the forum you found the instructions from.

No one gets paid: The people that release these instructions do so for free. If you do not get an immediate response or if your response does not immediately fix everything, please be patient and respect that none of these people are paid to do this. Also, a thank you goes a long way (not to mention a donation, for those that allow it).

At your own risk: If for any reason something happens to your device, do not blame anyone. Rooting is done at your own risk, and while it is unlikely that anything will happen, accidents are called accidents for a reason. When this happens, it’s usually best to reach out to your forum of choice and ask for help.

For many handsets, Rooting is the first step on the road to using Android Rom’s like CyanogenMOD. Modding is not available to all devices that are able to be rooted, so it is best to check out the creators site to make sure your phone is supported before moving forward. Happy Hunting and Good Luck!

Russell Holly is the Senior Editor for TDG Online,
Email Russell at [email protected]