Install CWM/TWRP Recovery and Root Sprint Galaxy Tab 3 SM-T217S [How To]


Sprint branded Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 is available as SM-T217S. The device sports the same specifications as that of the normal Galaxy Tab 3, e.g. 7.0 inches TFT touch screen display, 1.2 GHz dual core CPU, 1 GB RAM, 3.15 MP shooter at the back and a 1.3 MP shooter on the front. Out of the box, the Sprint Galaxy Tab 3 runs on Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean, but Samsung has recently give a great surprise to the Sprint Galaxy Tab 3 owners by rolling out a direct Android 4.4.2 KitKat update. If you happen to be a Sprint Galaxy Tab 3 SM-T217S owner and you’re looking for a way to go beyond the boundaries and make some tweaks and apply mods to your Galaxy Tab 3, you may require a custom recovery and root access on your device.

In case you’re looking for both these things [custom recovery installation and root access], you may have spotted the right place as in the following post we are going to install ClockworkMod 6 or TWRP 2.7 recovery and gain the root access on Sprint Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 SM-T217S. Although both the recoveries serve the same purpose, but you may pick one according to your liking.This method will work with the device running Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean and Android 4.4.2 KitKat, so you don’t really need to worry about the firmware version. To make everything clear for the newbies, let’s go through the custom recovery and root access introduction and then head towards the installation instructions.Sprint Galaxy TAb 3

What is a custom recovery and root access?

A custom recovery allows you to install custom roms, mods etc. Along with these, you can make a Nandroid backup, this helps you a lot as you can move back to the previous working state of your phone at any time you want if you have backed up your current system. In some cases, to root the phone you need to flash file in the custom recovery, having installed the recovery may help you while in some casesto install the recovery easily, you need to have the phone rooted. You can also wipe cache and dalvik cache of your phone using a custom recovery.

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 flashing custom recoveries and custom ROMs. Here’s our collection of 10 Best Root Apps.


Early Preparations:

      1. This guide is only for Sprint Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7.0 SM-T217S. Do not try this on any other device.
      2. Make sure that your phone’s battery is charged at least over 60%.
      3. Use the original data cable for establishing the connection between your PC and phone.
      4. Backup all your important contacts, find the full guide here.
      5. Backup all your important sms messages, find the full guide here.
      6. Backup all your important call logs, find the full guide here.
      7. Backup all your important media content manually. (Copy to your PC.)
      8. If you’ve flashed a custom recovery previously, it is suggested that you create a Nandroid Backup.  If this is the first time, you can do this step after you flash the recovery.
      9. Don’t forget to make EFS backup before flashing this firmware. [Important]
      10. If your device is previously rooted, you may use Titanium Backup to backup each and everything on your phone. In case this is the first time, you may skip this step for now.
      11. Turn off /disable Samsung Kies while using Odin3.
      12. Turn of any Anti Virus software while using Odin3.
      13. Alright. Follow the instructions carefully.

Downloads Required:

How to install CWM or TWRP Recovery on Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 SM-T217S:

  1. Download CWM or TWRP Recovery.tar.md5 file [According to your choice].
  2. Open Odin3.exe.
  3. Put your Tab 3 in download mode. To do so, turn it off and wait for 10 seconds. Turn it on by pressing and holding Volume Down + Home Button + Power Key simultaneously, You should see a warning, press Volume Up to continue. In case this method doesn’t work for you, try one from this guide.
  4. Connect your Tab 3 to your PC.
  5. As soon as Odin detects your phone, the ID:COM box should turn blue.  Make sure that you’ve installed Samsung USB drivers before connecting.
  6. For Odin 3.09 hit the AP tab. Select the recovery.tar.md5, that you downloaded and extracted above.
  7. If you’re using Odin 3.07, you will select “PDA” tab instead of the AP tab, rest of the options remain untouched.
  8. Make sure that the options selected in your Odin are exactly as shown in the pic.
  9. Odin 3.09 explained. (2)
  10. Hit start and wait till the recovery flashing is complete, as soon as your device restarts, remove it from PC.
  11. You can now boot into recovery mode by turning off your device, and then turning it on by pressing and holding Volume Up + Home + Power Key.
  12. That’s all!

How to Root Galaxy Tab 3 SM-T217S.

      1. Copy the downloaded Root file to your Tab’s SD card.
      2. Boot into recovery mode on your Galaxy Tab 3, use step 11 in the recovery installation guide.
      3. Now Select “Install > Choose Zip from SD card > Root > Yes / Confirm”.
      4. This will flash the Root Package and quickly gain the root access on your Galaxy Tab 3 SM-T217S.
      5. Reboot your device.
      6. Find SuperSu or SuperUser in the App Drawer.
      7. That’s All!

How to install busybox now?

      1. Go to Google Play Store on your phone.
      2. Search for “Busybox Installter”.
      3. Once you find it, install it.
      4. Run the Busybox installer and proceed with the installation.
      5. That’s all!

How to check if the device is properly rooted or not?

      1. To do so, go to Google Play Store on your Galaxy Tab 3 SM-T217S
      2. Find “Root Checker” and install it.
      3. Open Root Checker.
      4. Tap “Verify Root”.
      5. It will ask you for SuperSu rights, tap “Grant”.
      6. It should show you Root Access Verified Now!
      7. That’s All!


That’s all the credits for the recovery goes to XDA dev gr8nole. In case you’re happy with his work, don’t forget to make him a donation for his hardwork. If you’re facing any difficulties regarding this post, feel free to stop by the comment box and drop us your words. We will get back to you ASAP!

Usama is a software engineer by profession and at he uses his expertise to solve everyday consumer tech problems with his main areas of interest being Android, iOS and Windows.


    • twrp wouldn’t work for me, odin would say everything was fine and then I would try to go to custom recovery, and it said it worked but nothing happened. I then realized I was not going to the twrp recovery, it was stock recovery, because twrp wasn’t working. As soon as I ran odin again with CWM it worked, I also unchecked auto reboot (not sure if that had anything to do with it but another video said to uncheck that). Then the CWM recovery worked and I was able to add root. Thanks a lot for your tutorial, I’ve been looking all over trying to find a root that would work for sure on 4.4 and not just 4.2.

  1. only works if usb debugging is on.also try with auto reboot ticked off in odin 3.0.9. those were the two problems for me…now ok.

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