Why root an Android phone?
There are countless ways in which you can use root access on your Android smartphone, but in this article we will focus on those used in conjunction with MOBILedit Forensic Express.
Our software uses root access to obtain as much data as possible (including deleted data).
It's also crucial to have a rooted phone in order to perform application analysis and physical dump of any Android phone using our (or any other) software.
What does rooting an Android actually mean?
It is important to realize that Android runs on the Linux kernel, which means it is a Linux-based operating system with a few major changes to make it suitable for touchscreens.
When you root your Android phone, you are essentially using an exploit to unlock one of Linux's basic functionalities - access to the core of the operating system, which is normally only accessible by phone manufacturers.
Once you gain root access you can use it to manipulate, change, remove or add anything inside your Android phone.
How do I root an Android phone?
Please do note that our support team can help you with problems that might occur after the device is rooted, but the whole process of rooting is only done by the user
Most Android devices should be able to be rooted. However, the process of rooting is specific to each phone model, version of Android and build number, so you always need to find the right tool according to your phone model.
You can root a majority of old school Android phones
using an app called KingoRoot
, if for some reason this method doesn't work for you (locked bootloader, Knox, etc.) or you have a modern Android device
then you may be able to find help on XDA Developers
, which is a website with a large active user community dedicated entirely to Android smartphones.
You can also check other techniques we offer in getting more information from the device here
Please note that sometimes it is necessary to unlock your phone's bootloader in order to root it. You can either find a step-by-step tutorial on how to unlock the bootloader on your phone manufacturer's webpage or you can use a technique on our user-guide here
Some devices after their bootloader is unlocked do wipe their data, so please, just in case, copy your data somewhere safe.
Once rooting has been completed successfully the phone is then switched to so-called "rooted mode", and you then will be able to extract and analyze the deleted data, create physical images, access more data from applications and overall have more available data to be extracted.
Rooting your phone may void the manufacturer's warranty and could cause security risks. Please take this into consideration before performing this process.
Rooting a Samsung device can trip the Knox Warranty void flag which will make the data stored in Knox permanently inaccessible, so please be careful.