By all accounts, the Samsung Galaxy S3 is selling like hotcakes on all the big US carriers. The devices are almost identical, except for the carrier logo on the back. Well, Verizon did include one more little surprise — the bootloader on its version of the phone was locked. At least it was until just the other day. Hackers have managed to get around the lockdown.
The bootloader is the first part of the software to load upon boot up. It is used to verify the integrity of the software running on the device, so it needs to be replaced for easy ROM installation. Users have been hammering away on the Galaxy S III since it became available. The folks in XDA and RootzWiki managed to gain root access and flash some custom software despite the locked bootloader, but it was a messy process.
This new hack comes by way of a leaked unsecure bootloader. The exploit has been named CASUAL for Verizon GS3. By running the exploit, the device will no longer check the signature of installed software, meaning you can install whatever software you want. This is a much safer way to get custom ROMs working.
The installation process is mostly automated, which is a far cry from the command line tomfoolery that was required for previous hacks. However, it currently only works on Linux and OS X. As usual, doing this will void the warranty and future OTA updates might break the bootloader. The devs recommend refusing future stock software updates. But with a rooted and unlocked device, you can just move away from the stock software to a more streamlined ROM.
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