Samsung fans will still believe the Sammy S6 is the best smartphone out there today — that’s understandable. While that might be true, it’s still awesome to crack and hack open the system internals with root access so you can get back to installing your custom ROMs. Samsung are one of the worst culprits for what we like to refer to as “bloatware” whereby you are exposed to umpteen stock apps available. Of course, there’s much more appeal to gaining root access on the Samsung Galaxy S6 apart from installing custom ROMs. You might like to overclock the CPU, increase the battery lifetime, install Google Play apps for root-only devices and more.
As you probably know, Sammy continually pushs out software updates based on Android Lollipop for months and this latest version of 5.1.1 Lollipop is no different. If you have installed the software update, you won’t have root access anymore because flashing firmware always revokes the root access. You need to look up the guide for the new software update and how to root it instead. The reason for that is because the old exploit you used last time probably is patched — like is the case with this latest S6 5.1.1 update.
The following guide to root UVU2COF6 firmware is a new custom kernel complete with Team Win’s TWRP custom recovery image. It’s a unique guide that we have tested and we do know it does officially work.
As usual, it’s time to quickly run through tasks before you begin the guide. Start by backing up the data and syncing your Google contacts with Gmail accounts. You can get access to this account from any computer later and see where your contacts are. If there’s something you don’t want to risk losing it’s probably your contacts for most people. Most other aspects can be backed up from third-party applications available from Google Play. We are still recommending the Helium app for Android for those looking to back up the apps and other data.
You should be an advanced Android user to follow this guide so you don’t get stuck in a boot loop and don’t know what to do. Most of the time that requires flashing official stock software updates again using Odin or Samsung Kies.
Downloading the Samsung Kies Mini file from above will also be your gateway to installing the correct Samsung USB Drivers from the menu. It won’t automatically install them for you, but if you open up the Kies utility after downloading, you’ll see the option from the menu inside. Moreover, most problems during the guide will be a result of not having the up to date USB drivers. Therefore, download the drivers, reboot your Windows PC and start the guide again to see if that’s the solution. Those with boot loop or obvious problems will be better off looking toward unbrick guides. The word “brick” gets thrown around very loosely these days and pretty much refers to any problem that you don’t want to have. If you hear the word “soft” in front of the brick then it means you are capable of fixing it. If you hear the word “hard” it means you can throw that device in the trash.
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.
How to Root the Samsung Galaxy S5 G920T running Android 5.1.1 Lollipop and UVU2COF6 firmware
- Make sure you head to the About Device section of your smartphone and double-check you have the correct model number.
- Enable the USB Debugging Mode from inside the Settings app. Those without the Developer Options menu must unlock it. Do that now by tapping the firmware build number close to ten times until it tells you on the display that you’ve unlocked the new menu. You’ll see it available from the Settings.
- Download the new rooting kernel here.
- Download Odin 3.09 version from our page here. You’ll find the link at the bottom of the page. Once you have the file, come back here and continue this guide.
- Extract the rooting file to the desktop. You’ll need to download software to unzip files if you haven’t already. I’m using WinRAR. With WinRAR, right click over the file and choose the “extract here” option. Others such as 7 zip will vary slightly.
- Extract the Odin tool just like you did the rooting tool, only this time you want to double-click and run the executable Odin file so the program starts running on the desktop.
- Completely Power off the S6 smartphone. Boot it up in Download Mode. Hold in the Home + Power + Volume Down keys together and the display will change.
- Release the three button combination and press the Volume Up key and you’ll enter the download mode we are after.
- Connect the S6 to the same Windows computer where you have Odin and the rooting file.
- Watch the Odin ID: COM port change color. If it doesn’t do that, you probably need the USB drivers.
- Click the AP button (formally known as PDA in older versions) and upload the rooting kernel from the desktop.
- Leave the default Settings the same.
- Click the Start button and wait for the flashing to finish before unplugging and taking control of your Google account once more.
Download the root checker app from Google Play now and it will let you know how things went. If you are interested in future reading about all things rooting, try out this post regarding what things you can do with a rooted Android.