The Consequences of Rooting a Smartphone

As noted in the previous series of posts, in order to root a Motorola smartphone, you need to unlock the phone’s bootloader. And, as we have seen, this voids the warranty, and produces a rather Draconian warning message about the potential for damage and injury. My experience of the latter two issues has been that both are vastly overrated, i.e. there were no such issues. However, there were some unexpected consequences from rooting my Moto G3.

The first thing that I noticed after rooting the phone was that I couldn’t connect to the Internet. And, it took me a while to recall that, after first setting up the SIM card to access my service provider (Petro-Canada Mobility), I had to establish a number of settings for the Access Point Name (APN). These are readily available from Petro-Canada Mobility’s web site as:

   APN: rogers-core-appl1.apn
   MMSC: http://mms.gprs.rogers.com 
   MMS Proxy: mmsproxy.rogers.com
   MMS Port: 80
   APN Type: Default
   APN Protocol: IPv4/IPv6
   APN Roaming Protocol: IPv4/IPv6

Clearly, the rooting process had removed the initial settings; however, once these were re-established, Internet access was restored,

One surprising thing that, while Internet sources had suggested that rooting would eliminate user settings and stored files, my contact list and the digital photographs stored on my phone were still both accessible. I think this was result of the fact that my photos. were stored on the phone’s SDcard rather than in its internal memory, but I’m not sure what the equivalent situation was for the list of contacts. Nevertheless, if you recall, one of the steps taken before unlocking the bootloader was to back up these user files. So, while this procedure turned out to be unnecessary in my case, it was still a prudent exercise and, anyway, one can’t have too many backups!

The good news is that my “screen maps: did come in handy for re-installing my apps. All of the user-installed apps had been lost in the rooting process so I took the opportunity to sort the wheat from the chaff and only re-installed the apps that I frequently use.

One of the oddball items that resulted was trying to re-establish a local HTML file as the home page for Firefox. There was no problem with Firefox not being able to access local files [see: Opening Local HTML Files in Firefox under Android 6.0 (Marshmallow)]. The trick was to use the correct format for the link which was: file:///sdcard/default.htm.

So much for unintended – and perhaps unwanted – consequences, in the next post, we’ll take a look at some of the benefits that result for rooting the phone.

References:

Unlocking the bootloader of a Moto G3
https://linuxnorth.wordpress.com/2017/08/31/unlocking-the-bootloader-of-a-moto-g3/

Rooting a Moto G3 Smartphone
https://linuxnorth.wordpress.com/2017/09/03/rooting-a-moto-g3-smartphone/

What is an APN, and how do I change it?
https://www.androidcentral.com/what-apn-and-how-do-i-change-it

Petro-Canada Mobility – Support – Data Settings
https://mobility.petro-canada.ca/support-data-settings.aspx

Opening Local HTML Files in Firefox under Android 6.0 (Marshmallow)
https://linuxnorth.wordpress.com/2016/08/08/opening-local-html-files-in-firefox-under-android-6-0-marshmallow/

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