Friday, 22 August 2014

Fixed the Samsung Phone & fuel usage

Readers you may recall I’ve been having a problem with the Samsung smartphone (Galaxy S4 LTE) which I bought back from overseas.  The problem with the phone was it wouldn’t find a UK network.  The phone had been purchased outright and wasn’t locked to a mobile network provider.  However when I approached Samsung UK about the problem under warranty they told me to contact the country of purchase.  I contacted the country of purchase who told me to bring the phone to them.  All of this was less than helpful!

I’m pleased to report have fixed the problem and the phone has found the Vodafone UK network.  A quick recap.  Samsung has two separate locks on their mobile products.  A carrier lock if you’ve purchased the phone on a plan and a Region lock which prevents you from purchasing a new phone in one region of the world and then used in another.  Samsung also incorporate a “country code” into the phone software.  Finally, they release software updates for different regions at different times.

I had resolved the problem of the Region Lock by using the phone in the country of purchase prior to returning to the UK.  But the software inside the phone was for the country of purchase and not the UK version.  I guessed (correctly) that this might be the problem.  All Samsung had to do was tell me I needed to replace the original software with the UK version.

The Samsung upgrade program doesn’t allow you to change the region software.  It will only allow you to upgrade the software for the country of origin.  However there is a 3rd party program named “Odin” which will allow you to replace the software with another version.  Samsung doesn’t provide access to their various software versions (firmware) but I found a website where it could be downloaded.

Link to Odin

Link to Samsung Firmware website  You must register to download from the site.

Before replacing the firmware I had to “Root” the phone.  The term Root actually means to circumvent the protection the manufacture places on the firmware.  The equivalent Apple term is “Jailbreak”.  I downloaded and used a program named CF-Auto_Root to give me unrestricted access to the phone firmware (ie, to Root it).  I used Odin to run CF-Auto_Root which then enabled me to use Odin to change the firmware to a UK version.

Instructions on how to change the Samsung phone Firmware can be found here.

I actually made the process more complicated that it should have been because I tried to install an earlier version of the firmware.  This resulted in me “bricking” the phone (this means making it as useless as a brick).  Eventually I managed to replace the original software with a generic UK version.  After rebooting the phone it immediately registered on the UK Vodafone network.  I even get network coverage inside the boat!   At last the phone is working correctly (fingers crossed)


We last topped up the diesel tanks at Wheaton Ashton back on 10 July.  Today I checked the engine tank fuel level and we have just under half a tank left.  My rough calculations indicate we are using slightly more than four litres of fuel daily.  I want to keep the back of the boat as high as possible because we may travel over the Rochdale Canal.  Therefore, if we add any diesel to the tank it will be a minimal amount just to ensure we reach the western side.  We’ll probably do another toilet tank pump out before the Rochdale.

I promised Jan I’d provide dinner tonight.  Yes….. That was fear I saw in her eyes!  A walk back to Salt Bakery resulted in dinner consisting of delicious pasties and steak & ale pie.  I also took the opportunity to buy another three of those vanilla slices. <burp>Smile


Paul and Elaine said...

You had to root the phone!!!

Tom and Jan said...

I thought you would have known that sometimes you have to root something to get it to work properly!

Narrowboat QISMA said...

Salt Bakery Vanilla Slices ..... The best in UK!!!

Tom and Jan said...

Jan, definitely! Thanks for the information. I have two more slices to eat.... :-)