Android forum


Doing a FULL wipe/restore on Android (CWM Rooted)

by Mortinox / June 7, 2013 5:24 PM PDT

So like many, I find my carrier's support to be completely useless. (I have AT&T. what is support?) Therefore the idea of "but if you root and install a custom rom, your warranty will be voided!" to be a laughable "yeah, and?".

I have a GalaxyS2 Skyrocket. A wonderfully versatile phone with great specs for its age. I hate hate HATE Samsung's Touchwiz, and I can't stand AT&T carrier bloatware.

I have rooted, I use Clockwork Recovery to flash roms. I have used CM9 (10 isn't very stable yet, too full of bugs IMO), ParanoidAndroid, JediJelly, Chameleon, and a few others.

I have noticed that apps once installed, even when uninstalled, leave folders. Most are easy enough to delete the empties of. And several Roms have created entries and left fragments.

when you do a factory wipe and restore, then install a new rom (yes clearing the cache and so on as well) all it does is remove certain system data. I have noticed all files and folders are persistent. I'm starting to get a few annoying hiccups on roms that were previously very stable, and I cant help but think it is because all those little fragments from previous installs.

So after that long explanation.. here is my question: (kind of a 2 part) How do I go about doing a REAL factory reset/wipe/format then CLEAN install of a new rom.. and WHAT do I need to keep on my external SD card? Will I need to re-root? Reinstall Clockwork? or will I just need to have a rom saved to install, plus my gapps?

if you read all of this I owe you a cookie.

Answer This Ask For Clarification
Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: Doing a FULL wipe/restore on Android (CWM Rooted)
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: Doing a FULL wipe/restore on Android (CWM Rooted)
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
Collapse -
Clarification Request
Is Windows thinking tainting our thoughts?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / June 8, 2013 4:29 AM PDT

I was all good and following you until I hit this clean install nugget. When I install a new rom, it's wiped out the flash as clean as came be. If you do manage to go back to the factory load, then I confused a second time about clockwork.

In my experience if it's truly back to factory I follow the same root guide I did before.

Collapse -
Typo. Love my spill checker.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / June 8, 2013 5:15 AM PDT

I meant "clean as can be"

Collapse -
Factory doesnt seem to be factory
by Mortinox / June 24, 2013 1:02 PM PDT

Yeah, see I've done "factory". Factory still leaves traces of the old install. Old empty folders, old not-so-empty folders. I mean is there a way to do like what you would do with a hard drive and Linux. Full format. Blank the whole dang thing, install android to a completely fresh empty drive.

I know using multiple roms SHOULDNT cause any fragmentation issues, but I swear my phone just gets buggier and buggier each time, even using roms I have used before. And yes, again, I do ALL the required wipes and cleanings and permission fixes (as needed) before each rom install.

Collapse -
Then old school.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / June 25, 2013 12:57 AM PDT

I see there are prior discussions about the command line and using rm to cull files and folders but that's pretty deep surgery.

I have not seen the buggier and buggier issue. I have seen buggy and some bugs are quite enduring.

Collapse -
Clarification Request
What does your question have to do.....
by birdmantd Forum moderator / June 8, 2013 5:12 AM PDT

....with At&t's customer service? Granted, they may not provide warranty or technical service when you root the phone, but you can always deal the manufacturer directly should there be a warranty issue.

I want my cookie now.

Collapse -
No cookie for you.
by Mortinox / June 24, 2013 1:23 PM PDT

No Cookie. AT&T is horrible. Had a Atrix (original) with the "wifi error" reboot loop glitch. AT&T denied it was caused by their latest update. Motorola denied it could be hardware. Hundreds of reported phones affected.

Couldn't go without my phone for 3 weeks from mailing it in to be "looked at", AT&T said "go to our service station in Walpole MA". They looked at it, decided it wasn't worth fixing, and said I would get a new phone. Keyword new. New phone had no box. I inquired. A refurb? Yes. But a refurb isn't "new" its "refurbished". No, a refurb is "new". Whatever. Started driving my hour long drive home.Got home. Noticed a small sized discoloration on the screen. Great, they closed like 5 minutes after I left. I'll bring it in first thing the next day.

went back the next day "hey this phone you gave me, the 'new' phone, has a messed up screen. I want a new one. I gave you one without a messed up screen. I want one without a messed up screen". They asked if I bought the warranty on my "new" phone. uh no. They tell me "sorry we don't cover damage to screens if you broke it".. but I didn't break it.. its just a blister of light. You can tell that there is just something behind the screen pushing too hard against the lcd. It happened with a laptop screen I had. "no this is pressure damage. you should be more careful with your phones".

Long story short, they refused any help, entered into the computer that I had CRACKED the screen. Spent 6 and a half hours on the phone with AT&T and spoke to 7 different service reps, was informed that because I went to an AT&T authorized warranty center.. that my warranty with AT&T was no longer valid at anything other than authorized centers now. And no, they never told me that would happen when they told me to go there over the phone. (I had asked if they could look at the screen, since this location said they didn't have the "tools" to do it) Finally FINALLY I got someone who understood what I was explaining about the screen, felt bad enough about my 6 and a half hours on the phone, saw I had been a customer for 15 years, and sent me a new phone for.. almost free. I had to burn up my upgrade (granted they did it 6 months early due to this mess) but I was stuck with them for 2 more years now.. with no upgrade option.. and the GalaxyS3 was scheduled to be released in 2 months!

So no. NO COOKIE for you. Ok.. you get a cookie for trying.

Collapse -
Wow !!!
by birdmantd Forum moderator / June 24, 2013 9:30 PM PDT
In reply to: No cookie for you.

Sorry to hear about your aggravation with At&t.

All Answers

Collapse -
total partition
by j_byrd96 / July 30, 2013 8:17 AM PDT

Ok first are you clearing your dalvick cache are you keeping the same kernal? Some roms you have to flash back to factory before flashing. If your worried about fragments partition your internal memory or hook up usb to laptop and delete want you want.

Popular Forums
Computer Help 49,613 discussions
Computer Newbies 10,349 discussions
Laptops 19,436 discussions
Security 30,426 discussions
TVs & Home Theaters 20,308 discussions
Windows 10 360 discussions
Phones 15,802 discussions
Windows 7 7,351 discussions
Networking & Wireless 14,641 discussions


$16,000 used SUVs

Whether you like your SUVs cute or capable, or some blend of the two, we've got a wide variety of choices in Roadshow's first collection of Editors' Used Picks.