Samsung Galaxy S III (T-Mobile): Full Update Guide

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This guide will walk you through the process of taking the Samsung Galaxy S III (Mobilicity, T-Mobile, Wind, Videotron) from stock to having the ability to flash the latest version of CyanogenMod.


Before you do anything — Make a backup

Don't forget to back up your data. If you have synced the device with a Google account, then the contacts, calendar, Gmail, & select other Google-related data will not be lost and will come back after the next sync. However, you should backup anything you want to keep that is not stored on the SD card:

It would also be a good idea to backup everything stored on the SD card in the rare case the SD card must be formatted to resolve any major problems.

MyBackup Root, SMS Backup & Restore, and Call Backup & Restore are all free applications that can assist with backing up your data.

Installing the ClockworkMod Recovery

If the Samsung Galaxy S III (T-Mobile) already has the ClockworkMod Recovery installed, skip this section.

Warning: Installing a custom recovery image on the Samsung Galaxy S III (T-Mobile) will void the warranty.
  1. Follow the guide for setting up the SDK.
  2. Download koush's ClockworkMod Recovery, Odin, and the drivers for Windows:
    • koush's ClockworkMod Recovery: download
      md5: 56500617c5f9307f37a341bd5132cab3
    • Download Odin v3.04: download
      md5: a6e2cfce68b6caf91d29edbb888fa370
    • Drivers: download
  3. Install the Windows drivers by running the executable with the Samsung Galaxy S III disconnected from the PC.
  4. Unzip the Odin archive into any directory.
  5. Place koush's ClockworkMod Recovery into the Odin directory.
  6. Run the Odin executable.
  7. Power off the Samsung Galaxy S III and connect the USB adapter to the computer but not the Samsung Galaxy S III.
  8. Boot the Samsung Galaxy S III into download mode by holding down Home & Volume Down while connecting the microUSB.
    NOTE: To confirm the device is connected and working, look for the blue COM box with the word Added!! inside.
  9. Uncheck the box labeled Auto Reboot.
  10. Press the dialog box labeled PDA and select the ClockworkMod Recovery.
  11. Press Start.
  12. A blue transfer bar will appear on the device showing the recovery being transferred.
  13. Once complete, disconnect the Samsung Galaxy S III and remove the battery.
  14. Immediately boot into recovery.
  15. From the terminal, run the following commands:
    adb shell
    rm -f /system/etc/
    rm -f /system/recovery-from-boot.p
    • NOTE: If either of these files do not exist on the device, ignore any errors and continue to the next step.
  16. Reboot the device.
  17. The Samsung Galaxy S III now has ClockworkMod Recovery installed. Continue to the next section.

Flashing CyanogenMod

NOTE: In order to flash CyanogenMod via ROM Manager, root access is required. Attaining root access is outside the scope of this wiki page.
If the Samsung Galaxy S III (T-Mobile) has been rooted, unlocked, etc. through steps other than the method described above or running a custom ROM other than CyanogenMod and you are having issues flashing or booting CyanogenMod, it is recommended the Samsung Galaxy S III (T-Mobile) be returned to stock & start over with the full instructions provided above.

Method via Recovery

  1. Download the latest version of CyanogenMod.
    Optional: Download the Google Apps for the device.
  2. Place the CyanogenMod file on the root of the SD card.
    Optional: Place the Google Apps .zip on the root of the SD card also.
  3. Boot into the ClockworkMod Recovery.
  4. Once the device boots into the ClockworkMod Recovery, use the side volume buttons to move around, and either the power button or the trackball to select.
    Optional: Select backup and restore to create a backup of current installation on the Samsung Galaxy S III (T-Mobile).
  5. Select the option to Wipe data/factory reset.
  6. Then select the option to Wipe cache partition.
  7. Select Install zip from sdcard.
  8. Select Choose zip from sdcard.
  9. Select the CyanogenMod
    Optional: Install the Google Apps by performing steps 7 - 9 again and choosing the Google Apps
  10. Once the installation has finished, select +++++Go Back+++++ to get back to the main menu, and select the Reboot system now option. The Samsung Galaxy S III (T-Mobile) should now boot into CyanogenMod.

Method via ROM Manager

  1. Launch RomManager.
    Optional: Choose the first option in the app, Flash ClockworkMod Recovery to update to the latest version.
  2. Select the Download ROM option from the main menu in the ROM Manager.
  3. Select the CyanogenMod option, and then choose the latest version of CyanogenMod from the menu.
    Optional: When you select the latest version of CyanogenMod, check the Google Apps option.
  4. Once the ROM is finished downloading, it asks if you would like to Backup Existing ROM and Wipe Data and Cache.
  5. If Superuser prompts for root permissions check to Remember and then Allow.
  6. The Samsung Galaxy S III (T-Mobile) will now reboot into the recovery, wipe data and cache, and then install CyanogenMod. When it's finished installing it will reboot into CyanogenMod.
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