Custom Recovery

If you’ve ever tinkered with your android device, you’ve probably come across the term custom recovery or install custom recovery before you can do something serious with your device. Some question that arises here are: what is custom recovery and how to install/flash custom recovery? If you ever happen to come across a situation where had to deal with recovery software for your computer, you would have a good idea of how this process works and what’s the story behind it. Put it simply, an Android consists of several pieces of softwares such as bootloader, radio, recovery and operating system. First, bootloader is loaded and then it decides whether to load operating system or the recovery (think of recovery as a mini OS). A stock recovery perform various system related tasks. Though it depends on the manufacturer but all of the recoveries are pretty much the same. You can manually flash official updates and clear out the cache on your phone via recovery. What stock recoveries actually do is pretty limited and honestly speaking not very useful too. So let’s see what actually a custom recovery can do for you. They are actually not that bad once you get to know them.

What is custom recovery

Any non-stock recovery is a custom recovery. It can be flashed over a stock recovery and replaces it. People install custom recoveries on their android devices to get extra functionalities. Some of the functionalities of custom recoveries include:

  • Creating backup images – the Nandroid backup. What this actually means is that it will backup all of the settings, application data, applications and every other aspect of the current state of your phone. You can then restore backup images. By this everything will be restored to how it was when the backup was being made. Creating backups is very useful when you are trying out different versions of Android.
  • You can flash custom ROM over a stock android image.
  • The ability to communicate with the ADB, or Android Debug Bridge, on a computer for debugging and other developers related stuff.
  • Some custom recoveries also offer Touch enabled, visually pleasing interface.
  • You can also wipe out the dalvik cache and stats of battery.
  • You can create logs for reporting errors and debugging.

In other words, custom recoveries allow you to do things to your device that manufacturers would not allow otherwise. Using custom recoveries is a bit risky, that’s why stock recoveries are so limited for the sake of making sure that you don’t brick your device.

Custom Recoveries

The two most popular custom recoveries available for android devices are:

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