It has been along and, at sometimes, cruel struggle for the Galaxy S to make it to the top of the Android market, but even two full years after that point, the former Samsung flagship device is still running hot in the Android world. While most of the development for the Samsung Galaxy S has stopped somewhere around the long road, it seems like the latest OS from Google, the Android 4.0.4 ICS is still waiting for its turn to run on the one of the first true Android smartphones out there. Thanks to a couple of dedicated developers, Samsung Galaxy S users can now enjoy the latest and greatest from Google thanks to the IMM76I modded official update.
Even though there is no chance for the Galaxy S to receive an official Android 4.0 ICS update, a dedicated group of developers managed to get their hands on a leaked build of what was officially meant be the update. This software is branded as IMM76I and it looks like it will work just fine with the older and less powerful hardware of the SGS. The biggest reason behind this achievement is the fact that this software build does not feature the Samsung TouchWiz proprietary user interface, and it thus a bit lighter on the hardware requirements, especially in the memory department.
As always, the goal of this article is to provide a step by step guide of how to properly install this Android 4.0.4 ICS Custom ROM on your Galaxy S. During the course of this article we will cover all the aspects regarding your personal data, features and safety requirements and the actual updating procedure.
Of course, the Stable Android 4.0.4 ICS Custom ROM that is at the heart of this article also has numerous other important features, which have been summed up in the lines below:
- Built from Android sources (IMM76I)
- Improved notification bar toggles: long press a toggle to go to related Settings menu; multi-state sound toggle.
- Numeric battery indicator.
- Brightness control in status and notifications bars
- Real and improved autobrightness: brightness really goes down when light decreases.
- Extended power menu with reboot, recovery and screenshot.
- Video face effects working
- Application killing with long press on back button
- Choose storage in Camera application
- Power button shooter in Camera application
- Timer option in Camera application
- T9 Dialer
- Removed “R” roaming indicator for national roaming
- Root, Busybox and SuperSU
- Kernel Semaphore 1.0.0s (387 MB RAM)
- HugeMem patch for 720p video by F4K
- Preinstalled app: OI File Manager
- APN’s predefined huge list
- Modified hosts file to remove ads in applications.
If these lines of text were not enough for you to make an image of this Custom ROM, you should probably feast upon the screen shots in the lines below to get a better view of what this software has to offer:
Before we move on to the actual guide, there is one last thing that you have to do, read and accept our disclaimer notice: This software is not our creation so we must warn you that you cannot hold us responsible for any damage that might occur to your device by following the procedures in this guide. However, we will try to help you sort out any glitches or problems that might arise by following the steps in this guide to the extent our knowledge limits us. By going further into this guide you have accepted the risks and terms above.
With this in mind we can move on to the treacherous business of backing up your personal data from your Samsung Galaxy S. We will be using some third party applications and procedures as this update is not supported by the official Samsung KIES software suite. Chances are that this update will never make it to the official state, so the only way to back up your personal data is via third party apps.
- Text messages – We will back them up with the following application : SMS Backup & Restore
- Phone Contacts – You can simply synchronize them to your Gmail account or export them to the micro SD card as a .vcf file
- Call Log – We will use the following application to backup your call log : Call Log Backup and Restore
- Pictures, Music, Videos, and other files – Simply copy them to your microSD card.
- Internet & MMS Settings – Write down all the settings from this path “Applications > Settings > Wireless and Network > Mobile Networks > Access Point Names”
Updating your Galaxy S with any custom ROM does have its risks, and this is exactly why we have set up a list on minimum requirements that you should meet before attempting the update. Keep in mind that are safety precautions and try not to skip any of them:
- Please note that you have to charge your Samsung Galaxy S to a minimum of 80% or even to full battery capacity in order to prevent it from accidentally powering off during the procedure.
- You must make sure that your Galaxy S is already running on a rooted firmware, either an official version or another Custom ROM.
- You must also make sure that your Samsung Galaxy S has the Clockwork Mod recovery properly installed and working.
- If you are already running a Custom ROM please make sure that the Voodoo Lag fix or any other such kind of fixes has been disabled prior to starting the updating procedure.
- Please note that this update can only be applied to the international version of the Galaxy S, the Galaxy S i9000. If you have any other similar device please stop here.
There are all the safety precautions you should even need if you are trying to update your Samsung Galaxy S to a Custom ROM, so you should now proceed to the next and last part of our guide.
This last part is going to cover the actual updating process. Thanks to the fact that we will be using the Clockwork Mod recovery for this, you should already be pretty handy with this procedure, but in case you are new to it we do have to say a couple of things. There are always some risks involved while updating your Galaxy S with custom firmware but these have all but disappeared thanks to the massive numbers of testers and users that have applied this update. With this in mind, you should remember now to skip any of the steps below, and that you should also follows them in the right order:
- We will start by downloading the IMM76I based ICS 4.0.4 custom ROM package and the Google Apps package. Please save these files to an easy to reach location (we recommend the Desktop).
- Next up you will have to connect your Samsung Galaxy S to your computer using its original USB cable and once you have done so you will also have to copy the two software packages downloaded at step one to the root folder of your microSD card. Make sure not to place the packages into any additional sub folders as you will have a harder time finding them later on.
- Now you will have to restart your Galaxy S into the Clockwork Mod recovery. The easiest way to do this is to turn off your device and then press and hold the Volume Up Button and the Home Button while pressing the Power Button. This odd combination should start the Clockwork Mod Recovery. If you are running a custom ROM you could also select the Reboot to Recovery option from the Shut Down menu.
- This next step is all about some cleaning up you have to do before installing the Android 4.0.4 ICS Update so you will have to select the Wipe data/factory reset & Wipe Cache partition options from the main menu of the Clockwork Mod Recovery and wait for them to finish their jobs.
- The fifth step is the one where you will apply the update so please be very careful. You will have to select the following option from the main menu of the recovery: Install zip from sd card -> Choose zip from sd card, and then choose Android 4.0.4 Custom ROM Package Zip file that you have earlier placed on your microSD card.
- Now you will have to wait for the update to be applied, and once it is done you should return to the main menu of the Clockwork Mod recovery and do the same: Install zip from sd card -> Choose zip from sd card, only this time you will choose the Google Apps package Zip.
- After you have finished installing the packages above you can now safely select the Reboot now option from the main menu of the recovery. You will notice that the first boot will take a while longer than usual, but this is the normal behavior as the software still has some additional tinkering to do.
If something goes wrong in the steps above, or if your device takes more than 30 minutes to boot up for the first time after the update, you should stop the whole process, pull out and reinsert the battery from your Galaxy S and simply retry the last part of the guide above from step 1. If you still can’t get it to work please write us a line in the comments section below and we will be more than happy to assist you.
If on the other hand, everything has worked out just right, you should now have a Galaxy S running the latest vanilla flavored Android 4.0.4 ICS firmware. All that is left now for you to do is to enjoy the benefits of this update and explore the new performance that Android 4.0.4 ICS brings.