Sunday, 23 December 2012


The first thing I ask myself is why? Why flash a new phone, running the latest OS, voiding the warranty and risk bricking it... Two, well, three reasons really.

The first reason; I don't like the feel of the Samsung gumpf on top of JellyBean; I'd had the phone for a month, but I still wasn't getting on with the Samsung layer. I guess I was so used to the LAF of my Nexus 7, which after 6 months, I'm still loving btw.

The second reason is, the battery life on the S3 is far worse than I expected. I'd go a day, without doing much on the phone, and I'd burn through the entire battery - the top two offenders being the screen and the OS. I'd had my HTC Desire for ages, as soon as it first came out in fact. I was getting used to having it on charge pretty much any time I sat down at my desk and was thinking, hoping that a new device wouldn't require charging all the time. The Nexus 7 battery life is awesome; I'd have to be playing a graphic intensive game for an entire day to get through a full battery charge.

The third reason; just because, I'm a geek, that's what geeks do.

So after flashing my S3 from stock to CM10, I had a couple of minor issues.

First of all, the Ubuntu walkthrough didn't work for me, so I had to go down the Windows root, sorry route. (Good, concise, clear tutorial; thanks @galaxys3root)

Secondly of all, the flashing of clockworkmod didn't seem to stick, though this seemed to remedy itself on the 3rd flash. I'm not sure why it stuck on the 3rd attempt tbh. I used Odin to root the phone, which worked first time. I also used Odin to replace Android System Recovery with CWM, the settings were the same each time flashed CWM, and it was only the 3rd time that it stuck. The settings I used were pretty much default but I deselected auto-reboot; so ensure all of the Options are deselected - this is so the phone doesn't reboot straight away and you can pull the battery.

Third of all, there was an issue was with the external SD card. CWM couldn't see it. The card would not format in the phone. None of my Ubuntu machines recognised the card, and Windows wanted to reformat it. "You need to format the disk in drive E: before you can use it."

I got a bit #LazyWeb about this and asked about it on the cyanogenmod forum and on android.stackexchange but didn't get too much back tbh.

Here's a tip for you if you still have data on there that you want to retrieve. On a Windows box you can run:

Start -> cmd -> chkdsk e: /f

Windows will then recognised it, and pop up the AutoPlay applet. You can then back up any data that you may have missed prior to flashing the phone.

I formatted the card as ExtFat. It reports 59.4GB even though it's a 64GB card. That didn't work at and my progress bar was still at 0%

Let's try formatting on Ubuntu... Dang! Ubuntu doesn't have support for ExFat; you'll need to

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:relan/exfat
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install exfat-utils fuse-exfat

Let's have a look at the partitioning. You'll need gparted for this:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install gparted

Pop the card into the adapter.
Start up gparted.
unmount the card.
Format as ext4
Pop it back into the phone.

I didn't get an error this time and the phone shows the message that it is preparing the card, but it doesn't mount.
You still get the same error through CWM too.

Pop the card into the adapter.
Start up gparted.
unmount the card.
Format as ntfs
Pop it back into the phone.

I didn't get an error but the phone still shows the message that it is preparing the card, but doesn't mount

Ah, well. Looks like I'm going to have to settle for 32GB.

Pop the card back into the adapter.
Start up gparted.
unmount the card.
Format as fat32; gparted show the partition as 29.23GB.
Pop it back into the phone.
I didn't get an error. Wait... Wait... Wait... It's mounted!
Go to ICS SD Binder set the mapping to the desired path, and hit save and reboot.
When the phone restarts, you'll see this:
Total space 59.43GB
Available space 59.43GB

I didn't really expect that tbh. It looks like it has taken the 29.23GB partition and automagically repartitioned it as 59.43GB. Awesome!

It's still very early days, but CM10 is looking good so far.

The biggest two battery offenders are still the screen and the OS. I have some spare batteries on order, and with the Samsung gumpf now off my phone, the battery is my only gripe with the S3.

I'm going to end with a question. What does the Samsung layer give that I can't get from CM10 and the app store?

For example: AllShare... I've replaced with BubbleUPnP

Useful Links:

Google Apps

CM10 Updater App


  1. As far as I can tell, you can't use Face Recognition to keep the screen lit using CM 10. Face Rec is only useful as a security option for the Lock Screen. Is there an app that enables Face Recognition for keeping the screen lit for CM 10?

  2. I wouldn't recommend using facerec for security tbh; it's a bit of a gimmick.

    Just had a quick look on play and found this I haven't tried it tbh, but if you're going to use it, please let me know how you get on.

  3. You lose the MHL/HDMI and the TouchWiz motions like when you put the phone to your face with a contact it automatically calls it. You also lose the radio.

    1. Thanks Anonymous.

      Not used the MHL/HDMI, but this post seems to indicate it works.
      also here

      Not really sure I'm missing anything with TouchWiz Motions tbh

      There are mucho plenty radio apps

  4. Verizon Galaxy S3 here. 64GB SD card.

    The SD card thing happened to me with Cyanogenmod 10.0. SD Card is damaged. Formatting may help. After a chkdsk, Windows could see it. I backed everything up. I gparted down to 32GB. Even after ICS SD Bind, save and reboot, my phone only saw 32GB. So I gparted the whole 64GB, plugged it back in and viola. The phone saw all 64GB and no errors.

    Thanks for the write up!

    1. I suffer and share the pain in the hope that others don't need to. (-;

  5. All right but... What if you record a HD video for 15 minutes? That file system will support that big file???? I don think so!

    1. I can't really of the cases where I'd want to shoot 15 contiguous minutes of HD footage.