Rooting: The Basics, Advantages and Disadvantages

WHAT IS ROOTING?

You might have ended up Googling about "rooting", when you just wanted to do something new with your Android phone. Rooting means gaining root access to your android phone, tablet or whatever device android is running on. The next question that might pop up inside your head is, "What is meant by gaining root access?"
To answer this question, we will consider some daily life examples. If you are a Windows user, you might have seen the option "run as administrator". The screenshot below displays the option:


In Windows 7 (as well as Vista), an administrator account does not necessarily run a program with administrator privileges. As an administrator, you have the credentials to perform administrator functions (creating/modifying user permissions being one of them, etc.). However programs are still run in a secured mode, in which they are prevented from doing specific functions (access to certain hardware/software properties, etc.). To allow access to these properties, you can run a program in "run as administrator" mode which grants access.

By default, there are certain files and systems that you don't have access to in your android device because they are blocked by the manufacturer. By acquiring root you gain access to these files, allowing you to modify, replace and even delete them. This allows you to take total control over how the software of your device looks and works.



ADVANTAGES OF ROOTING: THE GOOD PART

Here's what you can do with a rooted android device:

 

1 FLASH CUSTOM ROMS

You can call a custom rom as "customized android". Flashing means installing something on your device, which was not present by default. This means changing the device software that was present at the time of manufacturing. With the help of rooting, you can improve your device's performance to a great extend and even boost it's speed and extend it's battery life.


2 GET CONTROL OF YOUR APPS

What I mean by this is that you will be able to install incompatible android apps that you want to and even block the annoying ads which you see in some of the android apps. You can also uninstall those crap pre-installed android apps that are occupying your device's precious memory.




3 BE THE REAL OWNER

Rooting will allow you to become the real master of your android device and govern the way in which it should run. With the help of rooting, you can backup your apps and settings, if you are moving on to a new android device. You can even change your device's kernel to improve it's performance. The kernel is responsible for helping your apps communicate with the hardware of your phone, which means a custom kernel can give you better performance, battery life, and even extra features like Wi-Fi tethering (on unsupported phones), faster battery charging, and lots more. I will take up the android kernel once again, when I take up android custom roms.

DISADVANTAGES OF ROOTING: THE SAD PART 

Did you think that rooting was only going to improve your device? Think twice!

1 VOID YOUR  DEVICE'S WARRANTY

 

 Rooting will terminate your android device's warranty. If anything happens to your device, when it is within the warranty period, you will have to pay for the damage. In some cases it it possible to un-root the device, but in most it isn't. That is why I always recommend people to root their device only when the warranty period has elapsed.

2 THE BRICKING DANGER



A device is said to be bricked when it can't  recover from a bad rooting/flashing. The android device might end up becoming unresponsive and unable to be restored. Your android device usually bricks when you do not follow instructions carefully or if a device does not allow for root. Bricking your phone is a real possibility and risk in rooting and modding your phone, but it is very rare to occur, and most unlikely to occur if you simply follow the instructions.

SO, SHOULD I ROOT MY PHONE?

The answer to this question has to be answered by YOU YOURSELF. I can only advice you, which you might follow. I advice you to root your device only when your warranty period has elapsed or when your android device is as slow as a tortoise. After a year or so, most of the people get bored from their phones and want something new. This is the time when rooting and flashing might end up saving a few of your bucks. As described above, using a custom rom will make your android device undergo a transition. After rooting and flashing, the look of your phone will change entirely and you will experience as if you are using a brand new android phone.
Rooting is not harmful, if and only if, you follow the instructions carefully .

Do follow up this post with your valuable comments and feedback.

Krittin Kalra is a 19 year old Android freak. Striving for passions, chasing down his dreams and living a life without regrets is his sole mantra. A bit moody, he also does custom ROM reviews for AndroGuider. Currently pursuing his B.Tech, he aspires to follow his heart.
Rooting: The Basics, Advantages and Disadvantages Rooting: The Basics, Advantages and Disadvantages Reviewed by Krittin Kalra on 6/04/2014 12:20:00 am
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