How do you Hack a Droid Bionic with Linux?

Guide to flash and/or root your droid bionic with Linux, and hack the radio to use a GSM prepaid sim.

Why?

  • Cheap prepaid international cell service. I used h2owireless.com in the US. 5¢ a minute/text. 21¢ simcard – amazon.com -link
  • Free phone # and services for calling US numbers using wifi or cell data. I used Google voice. voice.google.com
  • Free wifi video calls. I used Google Talk or Skype. mail.google.com
  • Fully featured dual core smartphone. $60 on ebay.com!
  • Great, inexpensive accessories. Lapdock $50, Multemedia dock $20, Car dock $7. amazon.com

I cancelled my account with Verizon at the beginning of the year. I have been using Google voice since it was Grandcentral, so the switch to free/cheap phone service was pretty smooth (no new #).  I now use my phone mosty as a totally free wifi phone using google voice, siproid and pbxes.org. When I’m driving in my car, or somewhere remote, I’ll use the 5¢ a minute/text GSM service. Google voice gives me the one free # that will ring thanks to pbxes.org on all my devices (laptop at home, cellphone (wifi and GSM), old telephone hooked up to an obi100 -link, computer at the office). I can also call out from them all, and the # displayed will be the one.

After three days of hacking my Droid Bionic from Verizon, I finally feel like I have a good idea of how to replicate this process.

I used Ubuntu 13.04. This also can be performed on any flavor of Linux, BSD, MacOS or Windows. 😉

WARNING: This process will install Android Jelly Bean 4.1.2. This will stop you from reverting back to Gingerbread 2.* with this method. Something about security levels on partitions.

Requirements:

  • Computer – Linux based OS with working USB ports. Some people have trouble with USB 3.0.
  • Phone – Motorola Bionic XT875 (targa) with Micro USB cable. Make sure your battery is fully charged. MicroSD card inserted. SIM inserted.
  • a prepaid sim card.
  • A google or google apps account. (for google voice)
  • A strong will.

Attach phone to computer or virtual machine with a USB cable.

  1. Boot into fast boot – Turn on while pressing and holding the Volume up and Volume down keys. Press down twice to select Fastboot and press up once to confirm.
  2. Download – Firmware (JellyBean 4.1.2) Droid-Developers SBF
  3. Decompress and open a terminal into the directory.
  4. Download, decompress and run Linux script in the same directory (moto-fastboot and install.sh). When done, unplug phone.
  5. On phone press ok, next, etc…
  6. Turn on usb debugging, and install from different sources.
  7. Root phone – Easy Root for Bionic Stock 4.1.2 (Jelly Bean) – Android Forums at AndroidCentral.com
  8. Install Safestrap. safestrap.apk
  9. Hack radio, so that you can enable GSM – I used radiocomm on a virtualbox this guide –> The Droid:Bionic can do CMDA/4LTE and GSM/HSPA+ [IMAGE INTENSIVE] – Droid Bionic – RootzWiki .
  10. Backup stock rom, and install ASOP. (The rom I found worked the best with this phone) -link. If you are happy with this rom you can skip steps 11-13, they show you how to hack the stock rom for GSM.
  11. 3 different ways to make the change to GSM stick in the stock rom. – Edit or overwrite build.prop, install zip update, run terminal command adb or emulator
  12. Enable GSM on phone by dialing *#*#4636#*#* –>
    1. touch “Phone Information” –>
    2. Scroll down to “Set preferred network type:” –>
    3. Select WDMA preferred
  13. At this point I had to restore the phone to factory settings using safestrap. and reroot the phone (Step 7). Becuase it just kept saying com.process phone crashed over and over again. I think there is a way around this. Maybe not inserting the sim card
  14. Install sipdroid -guide and link
  15. Set up PBXes account -guide and link
  16. Using voice.google.com and pbxes.org you can control your extensions, and settings. It’s very flexible.

Most of my resources came from these sites:

The Droid:Bionic can do CMDA/4LTE and GSM/HSPA+ [IMAGE INTENSIVE] – Droid Bionic – RootzWiki

(HOW TO)(Unlocked Bootloaders)Install Fastboots, CWM, Tips & Ticks, and More – xda-developers

FileFactory Folder View – Verizon Firmware

How To Install CyanogenMod Android for Motorola Droid Bionic (“targa”) – CyanogenMod

http://dottech.org/87439/how-to-unlock-usb-debugging-mode-on-android-4-2-jelly-bean-and-higher-guide/