Galaxy TAB bootloader unlocked by Chainfire

Posted on January 28, 2011

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Chainfire ( XDA renowned rom tweakers ) has done it again. Working together with Rotohammer they have now managed to break the protected bootloaders in the GSM  Galaxy Tab’s stock ROMs. The solution is in the form of a PATCH which you can download as an APK file . Install it in the TAB, launch it and apply the patch if necessary. What this patch does  is to allow you to flash Back to the  original JJ4 bootloader version, a version that is indeed unlocked.

The patch has been tested repeatedly and with success on (0 bricks so far) – ONLY GSM versions:

- GT-P1000 Euro/International/Unbranded Galaxy Tab
– SGH-I987 AT&T Galaxy Tab
– SGH-I987 Rogers Galaxy Tab
– SGH-T849 T-Mobile Galaxy Tab
- GT-P1000L Latin Galaxy Tab (use LATIN version!)
– GT-P1000N Latin Galaxy Tab (use LATIN version!)

Both of them started the patch specifically for the newer firmwares  JM6/9/A/C/D/E/F . These  firmwares for the Samsung Galaxy Tab come with “signed / protected” bootloaders. These new bootloaders prevent you from flashing custom or otherwise unsigned kernels on the device. Trying to do so  will result in errors and usually requires you to reflash your ROM completely. The result is that once flashed, you cannot revert to older/official/custom Samsung ROMs.

Chainfire said  ” The patch After a great many hours of researching, testing and coding, myself (Chainfire) and Rotohammer have come up with a patch that works on most devices (currently all known GSM Tab variants), and flashes back unprotected JJ4 (T-Mobile ?) bootloaders, or the original P1000N bootloaders for the Latin models. The app only patches when it finds protected bootloaders, and you have to press a button for that, so the app can also be used to look at your current status. “

As usual and a standard warning : Even though there have not been any bricks so far, replacing bootloaders is a very dangerous operation that may BRICK your device, and you should think twice before using the patch. Using the patch is completely AT YOUR OWN RISK!

Read the detail report at : http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=888071

These are the steps to do it : Your TAB must be rooted

1. Download the APK  file and save it to your computer. The file name is SGT-Bootloader-Patch-v1.0.0.apk

2. Copy the APK file to your external SD card or transfer the APK file over to the TAB using KIES on mass storage mode.

3. Using a file explorer eg Astro File Manager, locate the APK , tap it to install

4. Once installed , Launch it. The app will check your TAB bootloader status and a report will be displayed, example on mine :

If your  TAB is compatible and have protected bootloaders, the bottom entry “Patch bootloaders” will become available. Tapping it will start the patch procedure. You will see a status report similar to this :

Signed: PBL, SBL, Kernel
Not Signed: SBL_Backup
Assessment: Can only flash SIGNED firmware

ABC and layman understanding of Bootloader :

A bootloader is the first set of operations the smartphone does when it is turned on . It is a small program that loads an operating system kernel into memory and transfers control to it from the BIOS. It is analogous to the ignition starter in a car’s engine.