Rooting the Asus Zenfone 2 results in more apps working with your device. The WiFi Protector is one of those apps you can install after rooting the device. As the name suggests, the app is great at protection your WiFi.
While WiFi protection isn’t usually something we think about, this app can stop people from tapping into your WiFi and literally using your WiFi. It’s a powerful app that require access to the root file system to work, which is why you never hear Google or Android talking about it. However, you can be sure that many Google developers probably use this themselves.
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.
Here’s how to get root access to the Zenfone 2 when it is running on the Android 5.1.1 (Lollipop) software update.
Files You Need
- Download the universal ADB Drivers on your computer.
- Download the Fastboot file you need.
- Download the pre-rooted image from this page.
Rooting the Zenfone 2
- Make sure you have the USB Debugging Mode on your Asus Zenfone 2 device turned on by pointing to the Menu > Settings > Developer Options > USB Debugging Mode.
- Extract the Fastboot and pre-rooted image files on your desktop by right-click over the files and selecting the ‘extract here’ option.
- Connect the Zenfone 2 smartphone to the computer using the USB cable.
- From the desktop, hold the Shift key down and right-click the mouse to find a new menu where you can select the “open a new command window here” option.
- With the command window open, type the command; adb reboot-bootloader
- Wait for the Zenfone 2 to reboot in bootloader mode.
- Rename the pre-rooted image “system image” by right-clicking over the file and selecting the option to rename the file.
- Type your next command into the command line: fastboot flash system system.img
- Once it is done flashing, type your last command: fastboot reboot
- The final command will reboot your Zenzone 2 back into the normal mode where you can start using your device.
- Once your Zenfone reboots, check it has the SuperSU app from the app drawer. If it does not have the SuperSU app, install the SuperSU by Chainfire from the Google Play Store.
You can check the guide worked for your device by installing the root checker application also available from Google Play.