The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 tablet does not come with root permissions out of the box. However, each Android operating system always has root user permissions available; they have just decided to lock them up so neither you or I can use them. The only way we can use them is if we follow a guide that lets us root the device, such as the way here with the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 tablet running on the Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow update.
There are heaps of ways we can root the Android operating system. The way you will ultimately use depends on your needs and what is available for your device. Those of you who are wanting to flash a custom ROM that does not already come with root access wants to install a custom recovery and then flash a version of the SuperSU from the custom recovery image. Note that installing the SuperSU from the custom recovery image like TWRP Recovery is different from just downloading and installing the SuperSU from the Google Play Store. Those who just install the SuperSU application from the Google Play Store will not find the tablet rooted, but those who install the SuperSU from the custom recovery partition will locate the recovery also works its magic and ends up rooting the device at the same time. It can all be a bit confusing because when you install SuperSU from the custom recovery and then reboot back into the normal mode, you download the apps and the SuperSU gives a message asking whether or not you want to grant the app root access. That is slightly misleading because you are already using the device as a root user. What is happening is the SuperSU automatically blocks everything and double checks that you do in fact want to grant it root access to the internal system. It does this because it is the only form of protection you have. There is no anti-virus installed in the SuperSU app that is going to set off alarms when it is malware asking you for root access. It solely relies on your intelligence to know what to allow through and what to block. While that may sound complicated, know that as long as you download apps that you know are trusted and only grant root access to the app names that you know you installed, then you should remain safe.
The CF-Auto-Root tool is made uniquely for each device and the software it is running. Chainfire has based the CF-Auto-Root tool found in this guide on the MMB29K.T710XXU2CPD9 firmware build number which is part of the Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow updates that rolled out to at least one area in the world for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 SM-T710 tablet. It does not matter if your tablet is running the same firmware build number or another version. Chainfire just gives that information for you to use as guidelines. He does not provide that information because you need to be running the same firmware. You can run any firmware that is based on the Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow software update for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 SM-T710 tablet, and it should work just the same.
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.
Files You Need
- Download the new CF-AUto-Root tool that roots the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 SM-T710 tablets when it is running on the Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow updates from here.
- Download the Samsung USB Drivers that need to be installed on the Windows PC you are using with the guide from here.
You need to have a computer that is running a version of the Windows operating system to use the flashing tool that is in this tutorial. The flashing tool we are using is the Odin flashing application and it does not run on MacOS or Linux distributions.
You must have the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 tablet that comes with the SM-T710 model number. Any other model numbered version of the Tab S2 probably gets bricked when you follow this guide. You can find out the model number of your Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 tablet by tapping on the Menu > Settings > About Device > Model Number.
There might be some Android updates that Samsung and your phone carrier networks roll out for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 tablet that is still based on Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow that brings new bootloaders with them. These issues do not usually happen because new bootloaders are found in the larger updates that update to newer versions of Android, so as long as you are running Android 6.0.1, the file in this guide should be work for you. However, if your file does need updating because your Galaxy Tab S2 does not boot or does not flash, you need to submit the new recovery image files found in the new firmware builds to the official CF-Auto-Root thread made over at the XDA-Developer website. That thread has been created by Chainfire, who is the man behind the CF-Auto-Root tool. Chanfire will see your messages and then apply the required updates to the rooting file on his end. Those changes are automatically reflected in our guides as soon as he makes the changes because we link back to the original CF-Auto-Root tool repository.
Rooting the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 SM-T710 tablets running on the Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow software updates
- Log in to a Windows computer using an administrators account so you can use the flashing tool.
- Unlock the Developer Options menu on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 tablet so you can use the settings found inside.
- Enable the USB Debugging Mode from the Developer Options menu that you just unlocked so you can do some developments with your tablet plugged into the computer.
- Extract the rooting file to the desktop of the computer so you can see the Odin flashing application and the CF-Auto-Root package on the desktop.
- Double-click and run the Odin flashing executable file that is one the desktop and the flashing tool user interface and buttons opens.
- Run the Samsung USB Drivers on the computer and it allows for the tablet to be connected and detected by the flashing application.
- Connect the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 tablet into the computer with the USB cable after booting it up into the download mode.
- Check that you get a yellow or blue ID: COM port color coming from the Odin user interface which is letting you know that the USB Drivers are working for your device, and it is connected securely. You should also see an “added” message appearing in the Odin app user interface on the computer confirming that is the case. (Those who do not see any color need to install the Samsung USB Drivers, or log into an administrator account because one of those two things is not working).
- Click the AP button from the Odin user interface and the browse the desktop of the CF-Auto-Root for the Tab S2 device that is ending in the tar.md5 file extension.
- Click the Start button found on the Odin user interface and the rooting begins.
- Pick up the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 and check you see text on the display stating that it is detecting devices, mounting the system, mounting the cache and then resetting the SUperSU.
- Check you get more text indicating that it is doing the SuperSU Installer, followed by the Boot Image Patcher.
- Read the important message that is now on the display that says that you can expect the Tab S2 to reboot a few times over the next few minutes, and it might even loop; these are normal and not problems. Do not be alarmed and do not interrupt the rooting process.
- Check you get more text stating that it is unmounting the system, restoring the stock recovery, cleaning up and then rebooting the device in ten seconds.
In conclusion, that is how to root the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 SM-T710 when it is running on the Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow software updates by using another version of the CF-Auto-Root tool by Chainfire. The tablet now reboots back into the normal mode as it says on the screen ad you are then able to install the root checker application from the Google Play Store. The root checker app checks the root status, and it does all of that free or charge. However, there is a paid version of the root checker app that can do even more such as give you the pleasure of having BusyBox installed.
Once you have checked the root status of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 tablet, you can see all the things you can do with the root Android and then decide in what direction you would like to head. You might be interested in installing the root applications that require root access to run, or you might want to do something else entirely. Some of the things you can do from this point include installing a custom recovery, installing a custom ROM, remove the system apps some people refer to as bloatware, increase the hardware performance, and improve the battery life. Many of those things you can do by installing applications that require root access to the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2’s internal system to run.
Furthermore, you can try installing another version of Samsung’s Odin application if you need to use a version that is different than the Odin 3.10 that Chainfire packages in with the rooting tool. There are times when people try using the Odin 3.10, and it does not flash, so they try another version of Odin 3.09, and it does flash. That might be your solution if you are willing to give it at least a go.
Moreover, sometimes the rooting process is known not to get into the recovery mode which is an important part if getting the SuperSU installed and enabled correctly. You do not have to give up if you are finding that problem; just boot the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 into the recovery mode as soon as your tablet reboot back into the normal mode after flashing the rooting tool.