Many geeks love the Linux distributions because they are secure operating systems and people get to use the beauty of an operating system and running terminal commands instead of just clicking buttons. But above all, people love using Linux because it works well and can often beat out the competition in benchmark tests for speed. The Android operating system is based on Linux and is a great operating system too, but the version you get when you open a device is different for a few reasons. The main reason your version of Android is different is that the operating system comes to you locked instead of the unlocked versions that were the pure version. Android developers lock the OS before they sell it on devices that are distributed around the world because the locked OS offers better security. The main security advantage of having the OS locked is apps are fenced in and cannot move. Normally apps could have the chance to read each others data, and that is a problem if one of your apps is malware a.k.a an evil app. The fact that apps can read each other’s data when you are root user is precisely the reason why they block features like Android pay for people with root access.
Even though the Android operating system comes locked out of the box, there are ways we can unlock it so that we become the root user on most devices. It just takes some work in getting there, and the work we have to do largely depends on what manufacturer made the device in question. For example, the Google Nexus range of smartphones and tablets are intended for use by developers, and you cannot do any developmental work without root access which is why they are easy to root and also attractive to root. An example of the other end of the spectrum is usually something like the Verizon phone carrier network who usually do everything in their wake to make rooting a device difficult. There are a few reasons why Verizon might choose to do this. The most important points that are relatively obvious are that root allows people to remove the Verizon system apps, and that takes away money from them when they do it. Additionally, root voids the warranty. Even though rooting does not harm the hardware of the Android device in any way, there can be the occasional problem that arises and these companies do not want to have to deal with it. Still, you will find many devices from the Big Red are rooted; it just takes a bit of time to get there.
Chainfire was running on the LRX22G.T705WVLU2BOH1 firmware build number on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 SM-T705W tablet when he created the rooting file that you find in this guide. That is a firmware build number that has rolled out officially to somewhere around the world. It does not matter if that is your country, your friend’s state or anyone’s country because you do not need to be running on the same firmware build number when you follow this guide. All you need to make sure of is that your Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 has the SM-T705W model number. Any other model number will get bricked if you follow this guide and flash the rooting file that is in this guide unless otherwise advised by a professional.
What Is Rooting the Android Operating System?
When you buy a new smartphone, you might not know it, but the Android operating system is in a “locked” state. For the most part, it will not make much difference to you: most apps are still available to use, and there are benefits to this locked state such as better security. When you root the Android operating system, you are gaining full administrative rights over the OS.
Why Would You Want to Root Android?
Gaining full administrative rights over the operating system has some perks to some people. For example, out of the millions of applications available on Google Play, some of them will not be able to run on your device unless it has root access. Until you have a specific need for wanting Android rooted, you probably want to leave Android as it comes out of the box. But if you need to unlock an app, then that is when you want to look into rooting methods. Using more apps is only one example of why you may want root access, here is the full list of benefits:
- Unlock more applications. Some of the apps available for Android cannot run unless you have root access. This is because the app’s features cannot run without the root permissions because the features require the full system access before they can be useful.
- Better battery life. Smartphones are great, but they have one caveat, which is each time you recharge the battery, it loses some of its overall lifespan. That means smartphones, in general, do not make great investments, and if your weekly paycheck is low, you will want to limit the number of smartphones you go through. One of the ways you can do that is by removing bloatware and creating a better battery life.
- Bolster performance. If you are the budget-conscious shopper, you may want to increase the device’s performance. This can be done by removing the bloatware as well. The more processes you have running, the more memory that is used. By removing some of the apps, it can help lighten the load on your hardware.
- Customize Android with themes. With root access, you can download and install any theme that’s at your disposal. That includes any customized theme you can find.
What Are the Risks of Rooting?
If you are buying a smartphone that is not running iOS, then it is probably the Android operating system that you want running as the ideal software to pair with your shiny new hardware. It is, in fact, the Android OS that offers you the chance to customize the OS considerably more than iOS: custom themes, run any app you know about, the works. For many users, the “openness” of an operating system is important, because it offers them more freedom which means running into fewer problems with their investments. But there is a reason iOS likes a far more locked approach: the ability to customize is not for everyone, and if you do not know what you are doing it can lead to a lot of problems which can define your time with the OS rather than freedom.
With power (full admin permissions) comes greater responsibility. Here are some of the main risk factors when it comes to rooting:
- Malware becomes a larger threat. You might read the occasional news article about how new malware is wreaking havoc in parts of the world on Android. But the Android operating system with root access becomes considerably more vulnerable to exploits because applications are no longer prisoned off in their own sandbox environments. This means if you accidentally download malware, it can do more damage because it can spread throughout the operating system and even jump into other applications and potentially view sensitive data.
- You can accidentally brick the smartphone. There is always a chance that you end up bricking the smartphone before you had the opportunity to use it with root access. That is because if you are going to brick it, it is going to happen during the rooting process.
- You may void the warranty. Most manufacturers do not allow you to root the Android operating system and still get to bring it in for repairs under warranty. Whether they are legally meant to do that or not is another question, but it is now common knowledge that most do not want to help you if they find out you have unlocked the OS with root access.
- You need to have the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 tablet that comes with the SM-T705W model number to flash the rooting file that is available in this guide. You can find out the model number of your Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 tablet by pointing to the Menu > Settings > About Device > Model Number.
- You need to have a computer that is running on the Windows operating system to flash the CF-Auto-Root package that is available in this guide. There are some devices that you can flash the CF-Auto-Root tool for from a MacOS or Linux operating system, but they are not the Samsung devices. The Samsung devices get flashed by using the Odin flashing application and it is only available for Windows PCs.
- You can expect some more Android software updates that roll out over the air as official updates that are based on the Android 5.0.2 Lollipop software updates. It is possible that one of these updates brings a new bootloader with it, and when that happens, Chainfire usually needs to update the files, so the start working again. You know a file needs updating if you try to flash it, and your device does not boot or does not flash the file. You can get in touch with Chanfire by leaving a new message on the official CF-Auto-Root thread made over at the XDA-Developers website for him to see along with the new recovery image that is found within the new firmware file that is causing the problems. He uses that recovery image file to update the rooting file so that it works again. As soon as Chainfire is finished with updating the file, the guide we have automatically reflects those changes because we link back to the official CF-Auto-Root repository page by Chainfire. In other words, as soon as he updates the files, we update the file, so you never have to worry about it not being the latest file in our guides.
Files You Need
- Download the CF-Auto-Root tool for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 SM-T705W tablet when it is running on the Android 5.0.2 Lollipop software updates.
- Download the Samsung USB Drivers for the Windows computer.
How to Root Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 SM-T705W on Android 5.0.2 Lollipop Using CF-Auto-Root
- Log into the Windows PC using administrators account so the Odin flahsing tool can run on the computer and allow you to flash the files.
- Unlock the Developer Options menu on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 SM-T705W tablet so you can use the set of options available within that menu next.
- Enable the USB Debugging Mode from within the Developer Options menu that you just unlocked in the step above so that you can connect to the computer and it allows for some develops to the software that is running on the tablet.
- Extract the rooting file to the desktop of the computer so you can see the Odin flashing application and the CF-Auto-Root-XXX-XXX-XXX.tar.md5 rooting file.
- Double-click on the Odin flashing application’s executable file so that it opens up on the desktop of the computer.
- Install the Samsung USB Drivers on the Windows computer when you connect the Samsung Galaxy Tab S to the computer with the USB cable the flashing application can detect your device.
- Boot the Samsung Galaxy Tab S tablet into the download mode and then connect it to the computer with the USB cable.
- Check that you can see a yellow or blue bow appearing from the ID: COM port that is available from the Odin flashing application’s user interface.
- Once you see the added message and the color coming from the ID: COM port you know the Samsung USB Drivers are working and then you can proceed to the next step.
- Do not make any changes from the Odin user interface after you open it.
- Click the AP button from the Odin flashing app on the computer and the browse through to the desktop and upload the CF-Auto-Root-XXX-XXX-XXX.tar.md5 rooting file that is available.
- Click the Start button from the Odin application on the computer and then wait for the rooting to begin.
- Check you get the text rolling down the display of the tablet and wait until you see text that says it is reflashing the stock recovery and then rebooting in ten seconds.
- Check the computer screen now for a new green box available that gives you the pass message within it.
In conclusion, that is how to root the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 SM-T705W tablet when you have it running on the Android 5.0.2 Lollipop software updates by flashing Chainfire’s CF-Auto-Root tool. The CF-Auto-Root tool is a one-click rooting tool that needs to get access to the system partition to install a modified recovery which then allows for the SuperSU app to be installed and enabled. The CF-Auto-Root tool will then cleverly remove the recovery that it used and replace it with the stock recovery that was running on the device before it started, so you are left with a device that is the same as it was before apart from the SuperSU which is now enabled. You will see the SuperSU application available from the app drawer as soon as your device reboots back into the normal mode.
As soon as the Samsung Galaxy Tab S reboots itself back into the normal mode, you can open the Google Play Store application that you usually use to install your new apps and browse for the root checker application. The root checker app should be available for free and will be willing to let you check the root status of your tablet. As soon as you have checked the root status, you can spend some time finding out all the things you can do with the rooted Android operating system.
Part of the rooting process is the tablet getting into the recovery mode, and if it does not get into the recovery mode, the rooting will not have correctly installed and enabled the SuperSU on the smartphone. You can fix that by booting the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 SM-T705W into recovery mode using the hardware button combination for that mode and it will root the device that way instead. You need to boot into the recovery mode as soon as your see your tablet reboot for the last time before reboots back into normal mode. You can usually identify this time by checking the display for when it gives you the text stating that it is going to reboot in ten seconds.
Furthermore, there are many versions of the Odin flashing application that you can install if you need to try another version. Chainfire conveniently offers versions of the flashing tool bundled in with the CF-Auto-Root tool, but there are reports of some people needing to try a few versions before the could get one to work. You can do the same thing and see if that helps you get the Samsung Galaxy Tab S tablet rooted.
Moreover, the Sam Mobile website offers firmware files for your Samsung Galaxy Tab S device that you can download and then flash using the same Odin flashing tool. You can flash it the same way you flash the CF-Auto-Root tool. Sometimes installing another firmware version that is made for your device can help you get root access if the firmware versions you are running now is not getting rooted.
CF-Auto-Root on XDA-Developers. Chainfire, the developer of the CF-Auto-Root tool available in this guide, has created a CF-Auto-Root tool thread on the XDA-Develoeprs website. You can use the CF-Auto-Root thread on the XDA-Developers site for requesting new root methods for devices that are not currently available.
Encryption. Note that flashing a CF-Auto-Root file (regardless of the device) wipes the data if the device storage is encrypted. For everyone else, there should be no data loss when rooting with the CF-Auto-Root tool.
Samsung’s Knox security. Some smartphones and tablets in the Samsung range come with Samsung’s Knox security. The CF-Auto-Root tool trips Knox which prevents you from unrooting and using the warranty again.
Flash counters. Any device with a target flash counter is triggered when using the CF-Auto-Root tool. Chainfire’s Triangle Away supports many devices for this problem.