Those Note 4 owners preferring to give themselves administrator permissions of the Android operating system will need to get root access.

Once you have root access we advise you unroot the Note 4 so you can install official over the air updates without bricking the device. Furthermore, sometimes people want to run the Stock ROM once again from a custom version. You can unoot Samsung devices to restore the stock ROM. Here’s how that’s done.

Samsung Galaxy Note 4

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.

The files You Need

  • Download the stock ROM from this page.
  • Download the Samsung USB Drivers from this page.
  • Download the Odin flashing tool you need to install the stock ROM from this page.
  • These are the steps to unroot the Canadian Samsung Galaxy Note 4 with model number SM-N910W8. That same model number is on all of the Note 4’s in Canada.
  • You must have a Windows PC to use the Odin flashing tool; thus you must have a Windows PC for this guide.

Unrooting The Samsung Galaxy Note 4

  1. Unzip the stock ROM firmware file on the computer.
  2. Click, drag and drop the executable firmware file from inside the folder over to the desktop so it’s no longer in any folder.
  3. Unzip the Odin app on the computer.
  4. Run the Odin flashing tool so it’s waiting.
  5. Check that you have the USB Debugging turned on already. Point to the Apps > Settings App > Developer Options > USB Debugging. Check the box if it is empty.
  6. Long-press the Power button on the Samsung Galaxy Note 4. It should soon turn completely off.
  7. Boot the Samsung galaxy Note 4 in download mode by pressing the Volume Down + Home + Power buttons.
  8. Let go of the Home + Volume Down + Power buttons after you get the warning screen.
  9. Press the Volume Up button.
  10. Your device should now be in the download mode and ready to connect to the computer where you have the stock ROM and Odin waiting.
  11. Connect the Note 4 to the computer with the USB cable.
  12. Click the AP button. Those with the older Odin will need to click the PDA button.
  13. Upload the stock ROM (firmware) from the desktop.
  14. Wait until you can see the file extension of that stock ROM load in the Odin bar.
  15. Click the Start button and Odin will now flash that ROM on your device.
  16. Do not remove the cable until you see the pass message on Odin’s display.

Test the unrooting guide worked by installing the root checker app from the Google Play Store.