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May 312013

The Samsung Galaxy S4 for Verizon has been out for a week now and the folks at XDA have found a way to root and unlock the device. As one of the most popular smartphones in the market, its no surprise that the Galaxy S4 gets a little extra attention form the developer community.

If you are one of those users who like to have their device free and unlocked you can check out the step by step guide on how to root and unlocked your Samsung Galaxy S4 for Verizon below.

[NOTE] We do not recommend rooting your device unless you are well aware of the risks that come with it. Please note that your device can malfunction or you could loose data if you do not understand what you are doing, so proceed at your own risk.

[NOTE] If you happen to brick your phone, or come across any other issues you can download the original stock ROM from here and flash it onto your device using the ODIN program.

[NOTE] This method to rooting your device belongs to its developers who you can credit by following the source link at the end of this page.
This method works using a leaked pre-release kernel and root method provided by XDA members. However the root method has been updated with the latest SuperSU.

  • Download and Install Samsung Official USB Drivers
  • Download and extract ODIN v3.07
  • Download the VRUAMD2 Prerelease Kernel
  • Download the VRUAMDK Stock Kernel
  • Download and extract the Motochopper Root Exploit Tool

Flashing VRUAMD2 Pre-release kernel to remove boot block

  1. Boot your device into ODIN mode
    • Make sure your device is completely off
    • While holding the Volume Down key simultaneously press the Power button until you see a disclaimer on the screen
    • Then let go of both buttons and press Volume Up to accept the disclaimer
    • Once the green robot is visible on the screen this indicates that handset is in now ODIN/Download mode
  2. Flash the VRUAMD2 Prerelease Kernel using ODIN v3.07 ***in PDA section only***. You can check out our guide on how to flash your device using Odin here.
  3. Boot back to Android and verifying everything is still working and kernel has flashed successfully

Rooting your device

  1. Go into Settings > More > About phone > tap “Build number” about 7 times until it unlocks Developer options.
  2. Verify in Developer options setting on your device that you have “USB debugging” checked.
  3. Verify in Developer options setting on your device that you have “Verify apps via USB” unchecked.
  4. Verify in Security setting on your device that you have “Unknown sources” checked.
  5. Verify in Security setting on your device that you have “Verify apps” unchecked.
  6. Connect your phone to your computer and open “Run.bat” file from the location you have extracted motochopper.
  7. You will see a message on the phone asking you to accept the new computer connection (select to always allow and select OK)
  8. After motochopper runs and your phone reboots on its own, check if SuperSU has any update in the Play Store.
  9. Open SuperSU app and let the binary update itself to the latest ***VERY IMPORTANT OR YOU WILL LOSE ROOT IN THE NEXT STEP***
  10. Once complete, just open a root application and verify that is able to access root properly.

Restoring VRUAMDK stock kernel

  1. Boot phone into ODIN mode
  2. Flash the VRUAMDK Stock Kernel using ODIN v3.07 ***in PDA section only***. You can check out our guide on how to flash your device using Odin here.
  3. Boot back to Android and verifying everything is still working and kernel has flashed successfully.
  4. After your phone boots back to Android, you should now be fully rooted and on the fully original stock firmware as the device came

After you complete these steps your device will be rooted. You can also check out the following video for help with the rooting process

Unlock Bootloader & Install custom recovery

The next steps require you to unlock your bootloader and install custom recovery on your Galaxy S4. You will need to be comfortable using a command prompt to issue ADB commands. The ADB program is generally a part of the Android SDK but is located in your “motochopper-supersu” folder for your convenience.

Place the two files “recovery.lok” and “loki_flash” on your phone in the “/data/local/temp” directory. You can do this using a program called Root Explorer.

With your Galaxy S4 connected to your PC, you’ll need to open a Command Prompt and change to the directory (motochopper-supersu) where the “adb.exe” file is located, and type the following commands:

adb shell
chmod 755 /data/local/tmp/loki_flash
/data/local/tmp/loki_flash recovery /data/local/tmp/recovery.lok

If you are successful, you should see the following message

[+] Loki validation passed, flashing image.
2253+1 records in
2253+1 records out
9230848 bytes transferred in 0.656 secs (14071414 bytes/sec)
[+] Loki flashing complete!

Now you can turn off your device. Once you have switched it off, you can enter ClockWorkMod Recovery by pressing and holding the Volume UP & Power key at the same time. When you see small blue text in on the top of the screen that says Recovery, release the Power key and the Volume Up key. It will now boot into ClockWorkMod Recovery.
How to enable Google Wallet on your Galaxy S4
As you can imagine, Google Wallet will stop working on the rooted Galaxy S4.  You can get Google Wallet to work again by following these steps:

  1. Download the latest version of Google Wallet (R96 v16) TouchWiz ONLY.
  2. Make sure you have no Google Wallet pre-installed (go to step 4), or if you do, reset data on it.
  3. Once you have reset the data, go to the Wallet app in your Application Manager.
  4. If you see “Uninstall Updates”, select that button, but if you see “Disable” button leave it alone.
  5. Using Root Explorer and text editor, navigate to /system on the phone and change build.prop lines to correspond to this
    ro.product.model=Galaxy Nexus
  6. Keep an old version of build.prop as a backup.
  7. Copy the TouchWiz Wallet zip file for the mod to your phone /SD Card.
  8. Reboot into your recovery and flash the Google Wallet zip mod.
  9. Boot back into the OS and open Xposed Installer app (should be installed after flash).
  10. Select “Install/Update” and allow root access if it asks.
  11. Reboot your device.
  12. Download and install Paul’s Xposed Wallet apk.
  13. Launch Xposed Installer app again and go to the “Modules” tab.
  14. Enable the module by checking the checkbox for it.
  15. Reboot your device again.
  16. Now open Google Wallet and setup everything as needed (PIN/Security/Cards, etc…).
  17. After it is all setup and working, change your modified build.prop back to the original below lines
  18. Reboot your phone normally one last time and you will be all set

source – XDA (1| 2 | 3 | 4)