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Rooting the HTC EVO 3D when you have HBOOT 1.50.0000

Superuser - I'd put a superman joke here, but most of us probably know my stance on superman not being funnyI got an HTC EVO 3D the other day. My plan was to play with it until I had the Sense 3.0 stock experience down and then root the thing. I planned on giving it at least four days.

Instead, I lasted nine hours before I was presented with a requirement for root I couldn't ignore. I learned that my HBOOT was too new for Revolutionary's root method. This is when I sat at the keyboard and thought "I haz a sads." I'd never been so down on a new piece of equipment that I bemoaned my fate in LOLcat speak before, so this was serious. I needed root and I needed it then, even if it meant going the official HTC Developer way and unlocking by giving HTC my info.

The method I used and the one I'm about to share with you is long, involved, and complex. And if you're new to the root scene, then you will likely have to consult G&E's glossary throughout the rest of this piece. In the end, however, you have the tools you will need later on (there are shorter paths; however, this is the route I took).

Before you read too far into this, keep in mind that everything in the root world has an expiration date and there're hundreds of useless pieces out there now since rooting is a constantly moving target. That said, the method below worked in October 2011. If you're reading this in mid-2012 or later, stop and look for newer information. This is also a lot more complex than it will be later, so if this is over your head, then just wait a bit for the one-click method.

Now let's get started.

First off, I already had the Android SDK and Java JRE/JDK installed on my system. I'd advise you to get these running and gain a basic understanding of ADB before you start as you might need it later.

Unlock the bootloader

I went to, signed up for my account that said I might have to pay if something goes wrong and it's my fault, and attempted to follow their instructions, but immediately failed due to the driver for the device "Android 1.0" missing from my system. I thought this was a little odd as I'd had ADB/fastboot working fine with the HTC EVO 4G, but times change, so I needed my drivers for the 3D. I picked the HBOOT drivers up at in the same fashion I had done with the 4G back in the unrEVOked days and removed the device from my device manager in Windows. It picked right up the next time I plugged it in and I was able to step-by-step follow the instructions on for unlocking the bootloader.

Once those 12 steps were complete (pretty easy except you lose everything on your SD card, and if you have ADB installed you might need to run fastboot.exe from a different directory – e.g., C:android-sdkplatform-tools>..toolsfastboot.exe …), I had myself an unlocked bootloader.

Install a custom recovery and Superuser

I downloaded and flashed ClockworkMod, and it failed. Well, it flashed via fastboot, but I was unable to get into recovery ever. I was given a download link that contained a file called cwm-, so I flashed that and it worked.

This is the command:

fastboot.exe flash recovery cwm-

From recovery I made a Nandroid backup immediately. Then I flashed the Superuser binary included in that download using this command:

adb push /sdcard/

I booted the EVO 3D, then went into the Market, installed the new Superuser 3, and it worked like a champ.

I flashed ClockworkMod's newest version from ROM Manager (also in the Market) and suddenly lost recovery. I ended up having to flash my older one via fastboot again to get recovery back.

From what I understand, the official HTC unlocker gave me the ability to flash new and fun things (unlocked bootloader), but did not give me the ability to stray away from an official HTC kernel, which would require S-OFF). I gained an unlocked bootloader, but not S-OFF, and as such I have to get things packaged with an HTC EVO 3D signed kernel.

Funny-pictures-history-darth-roosevelt[1] This is not complete freedom at the moment, but it's better than being completely caged, and we can at least do almost everything except new kernels. We just have to wait for S-OFF to be found and wonder why this was not part of the bargain HTC made with us.

Turn off Fast Boot

Assuming you downloaded the tools linked above, the basics are turn off Fast Boot (not to be confused with fastboot)  in Menu > Settings > Power > Fast Boot. This will enable you to get to fastboot (the program/level of operating system) although it disables Fast Boot (your phone turning on in 8 seconds); you can enable Fast Boot again later.

Install HBOOT drivers (Windows only)

Install the HBOOT drivers from

Boot the EVO 3D into bootloader

Turn the EVO 3D off, hold volume down and press power, and you'll land in the bootloader/HBOOT (if Fast Boot is enabled, you'll land back at the home screen). 

After HBOOT loads, go into recovery (you should be presented with ClockworkMod recovery within a minute), make a Nandroid backup, flash the superuser binary, and you're in business.

Thanks to HTCEvoHacks, VaelPak, XDA, Revolutionary, and my wife for putting up with my grumbling about HTC.

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Paul E King

Paul King started with GoodAndEVO in 2011, which merged with Pocketables, and as of 2018 he's evidently the owner. He lives in Nashville, works at a film production company, is married with two kids. Facebook | Twitter | Donate | More posts by Paul | Subscribe to Paul's posts

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