Install CWM Recovery and Root Samsung Galaxy S4 Active GT-I9295 [Guide]

Samsung rolled out the waterproof and dust proof version of the Galaxy S4 modeled as Galaxy S4 Active soon after the official release of the Galaxy S4. The device sports a full HD 5 inch TFT capacitive touchscreen display with 441 ppi, and is powered up with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 600 Quad Core CPU clocked at 1.9 Ghz, a RAM of 2 GB’s is placed under the hood. The main difference is in the camera, Galaxy S4 Active has got an 8 MP camera at the back while a 2. MP on the front while the original Galaxy S4 has a 13 MP camera at the back.  Out of the box, Galaxy S4 Active runs on Android 4.2.2, and the device is expected to get Android 4.3 update soon.

So getting back to the topic, Are you a Galaxy S4 Active owner? and looking to root your device but finding it hard? Well, no worries anymore. In the following post i’ve explained the steps to root your device in so simple words, and it should be really easy to go with. But in case you are wondering what root access is and why do you need to root your device then here’s the answer for you.

samsung-galaxy-s4-active-urban-gray

Rooting your phone gives you complete access over all the data which is apparently locked by the manufacturers. This includes removal of the factory restrictions and making changes to the internal system and the operating system. Gaining the root access gives you the privileges to install various applications to enhance the performance of your device, allows you to remove the built-in applications/programs, helps you to upgrade the battery life of your device & install the apps which require the root access for the proper functionality and modify your device in so many other ways e.g using mods and custom roms. By installing custom recovery, you can flash custom roms in the phone easily. Custom recovery also let’s you backup your current rom and restore it in case of any mishap. There is a laundry list of things you can do after having your device rooted and installed the custom recovery, now once you’re rooted and have installed custom recovery, go ahead and enjoy it on your phone. Here’s our collection of 10 Best Root Apps.

Let’s move forward to the root process…

Disclaimer: The methods involved in flashing custom roms and rooting your phone is highly custom and may result in bricking your device, and has nothing to do with Google or the device manufacturer that is Samsung in our case. Also rooting your device will void its warranty and you will be no longer eligible for any kind of free device services by the manufacturers/warranty providers. In case of any mishap we may not be held responsible. Follow these instructions to the letter to avoid any mishap or bricking. Make sure that whatever you do, you are doing it at your own responsibility.

Before we go ahead, here are some pre-requisites that you need to follow:

      1. Make sure that your phone’s battery is charged over at least 60%. This is highly recommended in order to prevent any power issues on the device during the flashing process.
      2. Make sure that you have backed up all your important ContactsCall Logs & Messages. It is highly recommended in case of any mishap or data loss to backup all your important data.
      3. Make sure that you use the original data cable to connect your device to your PC.
      4. Make sure that your device is  Galaxy S4 Active that is GT-I9295, check the model under Settings>General>About Device>Model.
      5. In case of USB connection problems, enable USB debugging mode on your device. To do so, open Settings>General>Developer Options. If you can’t find the developer options, simply open About device and tap “Build Number” for 7 times and you should have the developer options enabled under the ”General Tab”.
      6. Install the listed files carefully, follow this guide to letter in order to prevent any mishap.

Files you need to download:

  1. Download and extract Odin PC – Get it here
  2. Download and Samsung USB Drivers – Get here
  3. Download the CWM-Recovery-gt-i9295_v1-2.tar.md5  Get here.
  4. Download the SuperSu.zip file – Get here.

How to Install CWM Recovery on Galaxy S4 Active:

      • Put your GS4 GT-I9295 in download mode. To do so, reboot your device while holding the Volume Down key, you should get a screen showing a warning and asking to continue, press Volume Up to continue.
      • Now your phone should be in downloading mode. Connect your phone to your PC.
      • As soon as Odin detects your phone the ID:COM box will turn light blue.
      • Click on the PDA tab and select the CWM-Recovery-gt-i9295_v1-2.tar.md5 file that you downloaded above.
      • Your Odin screen should look like exactly as shown below.
      • odin_explainedClick Start and the root process should start showing you a process bar in the first box above ID:COM.
      • The process is quite fast and will finish in a few seconds, as soon as it ends your device will get rebooted now, unplug it from the computer.
      • Congratulations you have your installed CWM recovery on your device now. To boot into CWM recovery, restart your phone while holding the Volume Up key, you should now see the CWM recovery.

How to Root your Galaxy S4 Active:

      1. Place the SuperSu.zip file on your phone’s sd card.
      2. Boot into the CWM Recovery.
      3. In CWM recovery select “Install Zip > Choose Zip from Sd Card” and select the SuperSu zip file and in the next step select “yes”.
      4. It will take a while to flash SuperSu and you’ve rooted your device now.
      5. Reboot and find the SuperSu installed in app drawer.
      6. Congrats 😀 You’ve rooted your phone successfully.

That’s All! We hope that the method worked well for you. In case you got any queries, feel free to stop by the comment box below. Thanks.


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Usama M

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  • Dima Medvedev

    The Volume Down + Home + Power key doesn’t work in S4 Active.

    Instead, use this:

    1. Restart your phone while holding the Volume Down button as the phone is booting. – For Download mode.

    2. Restart your phone while holding the Volume Up button as the phone is booting. – For Recovery mode.

    http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2387980

    • Usama Mujtaba

      @dimamedvedev:disqus thanks for letting us know. Post updated.

      • Dima Medvedev

        I spent like an hour searching & experimenting until the answer has been found ))

        • Usama Mujtaba

          @dimamedvedev:disqus that saved time of alot of users as I updated the post as well 🙂 btw did you use this guide to root your phone? if so can you please verify it?

          • Dima Medvedev

            Yes, root working fine, just following the instructions provided in this article, BUT – in my case, I haven’t found the SuperSu app after installing the zip file in Recovery in my case, so I had to download it from Play Store.

          • Usama Mujtaba

            @dimamedvedev:disqus You can install SuperSu easily from Play store once rooted using this guide 🙂

          • Usama Mujtaba

            ok. you already did it, thanks for verifying 🙂

          • Dima Medvedev

            You’re welcome!

  • Dima Medvedev

    Is anyone facing a USB connection problem?

    I have the following error:

    “Unknown usb device (Invalid device descriptor)”

    Also,Samsung Kies Air doesn’t work (stuck on ‘connecting’).

    I was wondering if anyone else is facing this issues after root/CWM recovery..

    • Usama Mujtaba

      Disable USB debugging if you have enabled it. or Try plugging in the USB cable on any other port. I don’t think so that CWM or Root can cause damage to the Connection.

      • Dima Medvedev

        Yes it helped!
        I think I tried it before on another PC, weird..

        Well, thnx anyway! ))
        Do I need ‘USB debugging’ for CWM/Download mode?

        • Usama Mujtaba

          @dimamedvedev:disqus No you don’t really need it, it is only required when you’re facing connection problems in normal mode. Other wise keep it turned off.

          • Dima Medvedev

            Great, thnx again! ))

  • Pingback: Rooting Galaxy S4 - Dummies Guide - Page 2 - Android Forums()

  • Usama Mujtaba

    @probablyraging:disqus you need to install cwm first, only then you will be able to flash SuperSu.zip.

  • Usama Mujtaba

    Yes it will. And as your comment suggested, I’ve updated the drivers link. But unfortunately, you could not understand the guide properly.
    It is already spoon fed, It couldn’t be more explained. Any noob can flash using this guide. The recovery is fine, and is working for the people, no problem with that.
    And I don’t see any mistakes in it. Thanks for your comment but that is not supposed to be here.

    • Usama Mujtaba

      and phone’s sd card always means > Internal Storage. You need to first learn Android and then come to this stuff.

  • Boizzana

    İ have some questions.
    1 ) How to unroot my device ?
    2 ) How to install stock rom if i mistake when installing CWM-Recovery ?
    3 ) Can i update my device with my rootly device ?

    Sorry for bad english. Thanks for services.

    • Usama Mujtaba

      @boizzana:disqus You will simply flash stock firware to unroot it.
      Again, a stock firmware flash will help you if it bricks your device.
      and you can’t update after rooting it via OTA updates, you will need to flash updates manually.

  • Craz

    Hey! I tried this but when booting to recovery it just says “error” and original recovery is shown. According to Odin everything went well.

    • Usama Mujtaba

      @disqus_uBMshbzyJ7:disqus flash stock firmware newly and then flash this recovery. Should work now.

      • Craz

        Worked now. My problem was, that I unhook the usb-cable at the reset-phase. This time I kept the cable on while manually restarting to the recovery. Flashing stock with Odin it restarted automatically to recovery. Thanks a lot for the guide and help =)

        • Usama Mujtaba

          @disqus_uBMshbzyJ7:disqus Great!

  • Usama Mujtaba

    @disqus_kIptal9kA6:disqus please try flashing a stock firmware newly and then flash this recovery, let me know if works or not. Otherwise I’ll find another working recovery.

  • How can i find stock rom ?

    • Usama Mujtaba
      • Downloaded all files. Connected my device to pc with download mode. Odin is ready, box is light blue. Clicking PDA button and trying to select CWM-Recovery-gt-i9295_v1-2.tar.md5.zip file but i cant see this file. What can i do ? Thanks

        • Usama Mujtaba

          @boizzana:disqus are you still stuck with it or already resolved?
          If not then please follow the instructions carefully. Everything is explained so very well above.

      • Okay i fix that problem. İ forgot extract file ^^ Thank you so much bro. Good lucks. God bless you.

  • Usama Mujtaba

    @boizzana:disqus your welcome 🙂

  • Usama Mujtaba

    @boizzana:disqus yes you can. You only need to match your device’s model number.

  • MichalP

    I have new S4 Active GT-I9295. When I enter Odin download mode it says Write protection: Enable. Can I use this guide to root my S4 Active? I have this firmware: AP:I9295XXUAMF5; CP:I9295XXUAMF5; CSC:I9295ATOAMF1

  • MichalP

    I have new S4 Active GT-I9295. When I enter Odin download mode it says Write protection: Enable. Can I use this guide to root my S4 Active? I have this firmware: AP:I9295XXUAMF5; CP:I9295XXUAMF5; CSC:I9295ATOAMF1

    • Usama Mujtaba

      @disqus_yTsI04mdcm:disqus It’s worth giving a try. Try putting it in download mode and flash the recovery, if it doesn’t flash, let me know i’ll find some other way to pass ahead.

      • MichalP

        It does not work. Odin says:
        Added!!
        Enter CS for MD5..
        Check MD5.. Do not unplug the cable..
        Please wait..
        CWM-Recovery-gt-i9295_v1-2.tar.md5 is valid.
        Checking MD5 finished Sucessfully..
        Leave CS..
        Odin v.3 engine (ID:4)..
        File analysis..
        SetupConnection..
        Initialzation..
        Get PIT for mapping..
        There is no PIT partition.
        All threads completed. (succeed 0 / failed 1)
        Removed!!
        Added!!

        • Usama Mujtaba

          @disqus_yTsI04mdcm:disqus Please make sure that PIT option is unselected. Follow the tutorial carefully.

          • MichalP

            I am sure that Re-Partition was not checked. I have tried to check it and uncheck it to make sure it is not checked. I was using third party USB kable (I had never problem with that cable) and USB3 connector in computer. However, when I used USB kable from S4 Active and connected it to USB2 everything went fine. I think it is USB3 problem. Some person reported similar problem in xda-developers forum. When he changed computer it started to work.

          • Mihai Draghici

            I’m having the same issue but i’m using the original cable and USB 2.0 port. Odin fails, no changes are made.Phone is as I purchased it, no custom ROM, no root. build number JDQ39.I9295XXUBMK3

        • Mihai Draghici

          I’m having the exact same issue,issue persisted even with original cable and a USB2.0 port

          • @mihaidraghici:disqus make sure that your device is properly connected, turn off if any antivirus is on, turn of samsung kies, turn of firewall and give it a try then.

  • Usama Mujtaba

    @disqus_yTsI04mdcm:disqus only 4.3 has knox, 4.2.2 doesn’t come with knox. It’s up to you whether you want to upgrade or not. No worries.

    • MichalP

      I have already installed CWM and I rooted the phone. What is the secure way to upgrade Firmware? Odin? Kies? Upgrade using application in phone? Should I somehow remove the root or even CWM before I do the upgrade?

  • Adam Holberg

    I don´t have the option to “Install Zip > Choose Zip from Sd Card” in CWM Recovery.
    What do I do then?

  • Adam Holberg

    I don´t have the “Install Zip > Choose Zip from Sd Card” option in CWM Recovery.
    What to do?

    • Usama Mujtaba

      @adamholberg:disqus you will only get it if you install the CWM recovery carefully. There should be either an option Install, install zip or something similar.

      • Adam Holberg

        Ok, cool. Works now 🙂

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