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Atrix Newbie Hacking Guide.

This is a discussion on Atrix Newbie Hacking Guide. within the Motorola Atrix Hacks forums, part of the Motorola Atrix Development category; So I imagine that you have bought your new Atrix 4G? I hope you love it, and love all it's features...but if you want to ...

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Thread: Atrix Newbie Hacking Guide.

  1. #1
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    Atrix Newbie Hacking Guide.

    So I imagine that you have bought your new Atrix 4G? I hope you love it, and love all it's features...but if you want to take all the "juice" from it, take a look to my newbie guide.

    **I am trying to do this guide the most friendly for both AT&T and International (and Bell) users.**

    Terminology (please notify me if I forgot something important or if you want me to add something else to the post)

    SBF File:

    SBF stands for Single Binary File, and contains a firmware image that can be installed on your device.
    So when you flash a .sbf file it will return you to a stock/retail device.

    Root is the name for the administrator in Android, and this gives you the permissions to control the whole OS, with this you can install apps to make changes on your Android, like making backups, using the CWM Recovery from the market, and even loading custom ROM's.


    The bootloader is code that is executed before any Operating System starts to run, also depending on the manufacturer the bootloader can
    come locked or unlocked. The bootloader must be unlock in order to use custom ROM's, boot animations, or kernels.

    CWM Recovery:
    This is a custom recovery software that let's you flash what I've previously mentioned (Custom ROM's, Kernels, Themes, etc.) If you are interested in utilizing extra features on your Atrix, you MUST, install this.

    A ROM, is a modified firmware for the phone, this is made from the official ROM package. Some ROM's have a tiny mod like changing the theme, the icons, etc. But some other are more complex, that change the whole UI (User Interface) and add some features like having custom widgets, overclock, underclock, etc.

    Note: As being a new user, or even being an experienced user, you shouldn't mess with the kernel.
    The kernel is like the translator between the hardware and the performance of your software, i.e: Processor, RAM, Graphic Processor, etc. Using custom kernels can make your device better but if this isn't used in the right way the results could be bad.

    ADB (Android Debug Bridge) is a tool that comes with the Android SDK that allows you to control and interface with your Android device, like setting permissions, moving things, install programs and apps.

    Here are some useful commands: ADB - Android Wiki

    Fastboot is protocol used to update the flash filesystem in Android devices from your PC over USB. It allows flashing of unsigned partition images.

    Now let's go with the software part..


    WARNING: If you are on Gingerbread 2.3.4 / 4.5.91. with an unlocked bootloader, DO NOT flash an early .sbf file. DOING THIS WILL BRICK YOUR PHONE.



    1. If you're on Gingerbread, you still have to flash your phone, NO one has to skip this.
    2. Power down your Motorola Atrix
    3. Take out your microSD card and SIM card for the flashing process
    4. While turning the phone on, hold the Volume Up button until it acknowledges RSD
    5. Your device will say “Starting RSD protocol support”
    6. Run “RSD Lite” on your computer
    7. Press the “. . .” button next to the box labeled “Filename”
    8. Load up the SBF file
      • The SBF file is located inside of the .zip file, you must extract it out before loading it into RSD Lite
      • Use WinRAR or 7-Zip to extract the .zip file on your computer

    9. Plug your device into your computer
      • Use the USB ports on the back side of your computer for safety

    10. RSD Lite should recognize your device and say “Model: NS Flash Olympus” and “Connected…”
    11. Press the “Start” button
    12. Be patient while the phone reboots. It will take a long time.
    13. Open and extract the Fastboot package from above
    14. Open a command prompt window
      • On Windows, press Start and type “cmd” then press the enter button

    15. Type the following command. Your directory will be the folder where you extracted the Fastboot package.
      (Example: cd C:\Users\Kenneth\Desktop\fastboot-package)

      • cd your directory here

    16. Power down your Atrix device
    17. Hold the power button and the downward volume button until you see “Fastboot”
    18. Let go of the buttons and press the upward volume button once
    19. You will now see “Starting Fastboot protocol support”
    20. Plug your device into a USB port in the back slot of your computer
      • Front slots sometimes do not have enough power to stay connected to the device.

    21. Type the following command:
      • fastboot oem unlock

    22. You will now receive a warning along with a unique device ID
    23. Type the following commands using your unique device ID in place of the ####:
      • fastboot oem unlock ####
      • fastboot reboot

    24. Wait for your device to reboot. You now have an unlocked bootloader.

    HOW TO ROOT ATRIX ON 2.3.4 or earlier

    To avoid the pain following large instructions to root your phone, follow this:

    1. Your phone must be connected via USB data cable to your computer and recognized.

    2. If your phone is connected, but not recognized, you may need to install one of these software drivers:

    1. Download this one-click root package: Pete's Motorola Root Tools - - - PetesMotorolaRootTools_v1.07.zip

    2. Extract the contents of the one-click root package to a new folder on your computer.

    3. Make sure USB Debugging is enabled on your device. This should be under Settings / Applications / Development / USB Debugging.

    4. From the new folder on your computer, double-click on Pete's Motorola Root Tools to begin the root process.

    5. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the root process.


    Personally I prefer RomRacer's CWM Recovery...just to mention some highlights:

    • Dual SD card support
    • ADB support
    • USB Mass Storage support
    • Nandroid additions/changes
    • EXT3/4 formatting
    • Unified kernel for international users


    Download the recovery image (If there is any update I will put it over here)

    / ZIP version.
    MD5 aebe29124d8c6d6c4b9873bd9ea4ca3b / 1f9a1d6fc83610e5c7c8f2d60e489b69

    Cyan / ZIP version.
    MD5 eb44b910983434d3996383098dff53b6 / 91365993488a9ae060b22c8b820d1c5b

    Light green / ZIP version
    MD5 e7c7ec152e9e3269ef2ab1ce99b8943e / 1e720c8760898549226a10d4776f5077

    Dark green / ZIP version
    MD5 c8a4438e5889d5e681a754555c40bc51 / 121d8d9102eac3ed24f1e0be6f8cd5d1

    Blue / ZIP version.
    MD5 9a1fd3c8796d2e768b54d39143c17ea3 / 9059c0c37fd2c547ec8508c893986815

    Red / ZIP version.
    MD5 036a9d9cc390a6071011d4d50b008875 / aa069d1aed20c5cbd13b2098b6a88975

    Now, place the .img file onto the folder where you have your previously downloaded fastboot package.
    After this, put your device on fastboot mode.
    Then run the following code:
    moto-fastboot devices  
    moto-fastboot erase recovery  
    moto-fastboot flash recovery recovery-atrix5.img
    moto-fastboot reboot


    Now after you done all explained above you're ready to flash the phone. So just follow the steps I've written below this.

    Download the ROM or Kernel you wish to flash on your SD Card.
    Make a backup of your data, I recommend to download Titanium Backup from the market: https://market.android.com/details?i...umBackup&hl=us
    After you done the backup boot your phone into CWM Recovery
    First go and wipe Dalvik Cache (under advanced in CWM)
    Then wipe Cache Partition
    And finally wipe data/factory reset
    Now go to install .zip from SD Card, and choose the .zip you downloaded
    In case that you're installing a theme, kernel, etc. on top of a ROM, I would recommend making the whole wipe process again between flashes.
    And finally when you're done just reboot the device.
    PD: If you get a boot loop, try entering Android recovery and re-wiping the cache and data, and perhaps try reflashing the ROM/Kernel.


    Stock Gingerbread 2.3.4:
    *Note: This is useful if you need to return to stock Gingerbread. Both CWM & Fastboot install available.

    [STOCK ROM] Android 2.3.4 Gingerbread 4.5.91 (Safest Update) - xda-developers

    RedPill CM7 Hybrid 2.3.4 ROM:

    - ROM - RedPill Beta - v3 - 7/23

    -ICS Themed
    -CM7 Based
    -And with all the features of CM7

    GingerMod 2.3.6 ROM:

    [ROM] GingerMod 2.3.6 #3 - xda-developers
    - MotoBlur Based ROM
    - Stock Kernel
    - Pre-Rooted
    - Multiple updates & hacks (see ROM OP)

    Home Base ROM:

    (ROM)Home Base (9/30 Blue-Chronic )FASTEST ATRIX (DE)BLUR ROM - xda-developers

    This is a "stock" Android base ROM, with multiple versions ranging from almost stock with only a few tweaks, to a stock feel with multiple mods, extras, etc.

    ASOP Atrix ROM:

    [ROM][DEV] Pure AOSP for the Atrix - xda-developers

    ASOP = Android Open Source Project - - in other words, it's supposed to make your device as close to a stock Google Android device as possible (i.e. like a Nexus device).

    *Note: since this rom is essentially a stock Android experience, many of the Atrix's stock features will not work; like the fingerprint scanner, webtop, etc.

    Alien ROM & Theme:

    http:// http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1186537

    *Note: The ROM is separate from the theme, which can be applied afterwards if you wish.

    This is a very stable ROM, however there are a few issues with the Theme portion. The Kernel is stock 2.3.4.

    Ninja ROM:
    [ROM] Ninja v0.4.5 Alpha 7/21/11 [ATT][READ POST #2] - xda-developers

    Super fast ROM, with Faux123's Kernel included.

    Cherry Pie & Pie Crust:

    [ROM] CHERRYπ & πCRUST v0.8 [AT&T] [INTL] [GB] [D3 Camera w/ 1080p] - xda-developers

    Includes optional themes and has a separate international build version.

    Aura ROM:

    [ROM] Aura [GB] [AT&T] [] [Updated: 10/27] [Stable EXT4] - xda-developers

    Includes Faux's Kernel
    3 versions to choose from (de-bloat, de-bloat with accounts, & with all bloat)

    DarkSide ROM:

    [ROM] The DarkSide v4.4 [2.3.5][EXT4][Tweaks] - xda-developers

    Includes Faux's Kernel
    Multiple Mods available to add to ROM
    Theme incorporates many apps

    HoneyComb ROM/Theme:

    (ROM)....AT(HoneyComb)RIX 3.4 EXT4[9/11]..1.3GHZ CyBORG SPEED HONEY - xda-developers

    Based off of Alien ROM with a Honey Comb Theme. Different versions are available for different kernel choices.

    iBlur ROM:

    http:// http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1305015

    Like the look of the iPhone. If you like iPhone, give this ROM a try then.

    StarWars Rom/Theme:

    (ROM)STAR WARS!!!!!!- 1.3GHZ VERSION 2.7C update 9/1 - xda-developers

    Ying / Yang ROM:
    http:// http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1244852

    Nice black/white ROM, with all the latest tweaks, mods, etc.

    Neutrino ROM(CM7):



    Faux Kernel (1.0 - 1.3. - 1.45Ghz)

    This kernel is one of the most stable on the Atrix world, it has different styles, so choose wisely which one you need, Faux's kernels allow you UV(Undervolting) profiles, underclock, etc. And it allows you to choose a FroYo, Gingerbread and CM7 kernel, so choose the right for you.

    Clemsyn's Kernel (1.6 Ghz/CM7/ - 1.5 Ghz/ATT/) :


    This kernel is based on Faux's but it has some optimizations.
    Has AT&T versions and CM7 version too
    Also, this kernel
    not work on your device (in mine didn't worked) and you will not be able to boot correctly.
    Please! make sure you have a backup kernel (Nandroid Backup) to flash incase this happens to you.

    Last edited by Blackn09; 04-06-2012 at 01:14 AM.
    Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

  2. #2
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    This is an incredibly informative and helpful guide, thank you!

  3. #3
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    You are welcome!
    Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

  4. #4
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    I wanted to note that a couple of your links are a bit broken, you put double "http://'s"
    They should be fine once you take off the doubles

  5. #5
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    Oh, I've didn't notice it. Fixing it! Thanks!

    Edit: They still appear "wrong" but the hyperlink it's correct. (;
    Last edited by Blackn09; 01-02-2012 at 05:04 AM.
    Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

  6. #6
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    Thank you!
    And again, this is a good guide for new users

  7. #7
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    Awesome guide!

  8. #8
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    Thank you Blackn09, this is a great guide. I’m going to use it late on this week when I have the time………. I’ve been rooted for awhile now and running Gingerbread 2.3.4, but a couple of quick questions….. (1) Is it OK if I remove my sim card (or does it matter) while unlocking and flashing a CWM / ROM ?...... (2) When flashing a ROM does it matter if the zip file is on either sdcard(internal) or sdcard-ext, i.e. CM7.

    Thanks again, great job.

  9. #9
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    Thanks edab hope this guide will work with you. 1- It doesn't matter having the SIM inserted, I don't see any problem, I never take out my sim and never had any troubles.2- Personally I've prefer to have all the. zip on your SD because it's reliable and theres like no chance that in an error you lost your info.
    Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

  10. #10
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    So I'm curious, I've rooted and unlocked my Atrix and I'm currently running CM7. Now I'm wanting to play around with different ROMs to see which I like best. I understand how to flash the ROM itself and about wiping the cache and all the data, and making a backup before I do anything. But here's my question: once I've done all that and say I flashed Aura and don't like it, can I restore the backup of my previous ROM and continue with life, or do I flash CM7 again and go through the process of setting it back up the way I want it all over again?
    ~Mikey~ ROOTED & UNLOCKED • RedPill/CM7 Hybrid

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