06/01/2013

5 things I expect you to know before performing any Android tweak

Caution: Android Tutorials Ahead
There are loads of tutorials and guides available on my blog, as well as all over the internet to help you transform your phone into something that even the device manufacturer would fail to recognize. Being a blogger, I know it’s not feasible to repeat things like precautions etc. in every article and guide. So, I decided to write down this article to which I can link on each of my guides about what I expect Android “tweakers” to know before they start out to tinker with their hard earned Android smartphone.

7 Sacred Things to Know before you start out on following a guide:

  1. You need to have basic know how of things like what is rooting, how to setup ADB etcetera. If the tutorial contains any new term, don’t forget to Google that term to know about it so as to make sure you are not in the dark about that thing.
  2. If the guide involves anything related to system files, make sure you make a backup. A nandroid backup is the best thing to do, but if you don’t have clockworkmod recovery, look for these alternatives instead:
    Titanium Backup for backing up your apps. (Requires root, if you don’t have root, try App Backup instead, although those apps won’t be able to save the data of those apps, and will only backup the apk files of the applications).
    Backup your contacts by exporting them to your SD card and by keeping them synced to your Google account.
    Also, if you are into loads of tweaks, then it’s better to take backups at regular intervals, as it might not be convenient to take backup before every single tweak.
  3. Don’t panic if your device is stuck in a boot loop or does anything it shouldn’t normally do. Don’t go yelling at the guide’s author for bricking/damaging your device as the guides are mostly tested working by many people (other than you). Look for solutions on forums like xda-developers which have many experienced users, who are normally kind enough to help you get out of most problems. Try looking for the Stock rom of your device and the method to flash it.
  4. Keep USB Debugging enabled, it can help you get out of serious injuries as it is required to be on if you want to access the mobile’s system via your computer, which in many cases is a lifesaver. It is one of the 5 things I recommend every Android user to do. The option to do this is available in Settings > Development (for ICS and above) or under Settings > Applications >Development (for Gingerbread and below). Also, make sure your device’s drivers have been installed successfully, otherwise there is no chance that your computer will be able to “talk” to your computer.
  5. Don’t test rom, recoveries and mods that are not meant for your devices. Almost the roms, recoveries and mods are meant to work only on a single device. Trying them on a different device will potentially brick your device. If it is not stated that the stuff will work only for a specific model, ask the developer/ anyone else about that. You might look stupid asking this question, but isn’t that better than bricking your beloved smartphone?
  6. If you want to have a tutorial on the internet working on your device but aren’t too good at handling techy things or are just too much afraid of it, better get some advice from a tech minded person, or ask him to do that for you.
  7. Don’t delete any files from the system unless you know what you are doing. A single file deletion can cause your phone not to boot or to bombard you with Force Closed errors.
If you keep these things in mind before manhandling your device, chances are, it will last a lot longer and you will have really low anxious moments. Happy Tweaking!
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