Sunday, 6 May 2012

Android Dictionary , Rooting , Flashing firmwares , FAQs , etc of Sony Xperia mini , mini pro , Active and Live with walkman - All in one Guide


Tutorial includes stock firmware .ftf files for Flashtool!

Tutorial fits for following phones :
  • Xperia Active (ST17)
  • Xperia Mini (ST15)
  • Xperia Mini Pro (SK17)
  • Xperia Live with Walkman (WT19)

These tutorials can also work on other 2011 Xperia phones.

Tutorial includes:
  1. Android Dictionary
  2. Root the Phone
  3. Installing stock firmware and downgrading
  4. Install Busybox and CWM Recovery
  5. Unbricking your phone(after OTA update)
  6. Install Supercharger to optimize Memory and KAK to optimize Kernel
  7. Edit build.prop for additional optimizations
  8. Enable Dual Band and Burst Mode for Wifi
  9. Unlocking bootloader
  10. Installing custom kernel
  11. Installing custom ROM
  12. Relocking bootloader
  14. Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

Yet to be added:
  1. You tell me.

What will you need:
  • Stock ROM on your Xperia and USB cable
  • PC Companion installed on your computer (for base drivers)
  • FlashTool(Flashtool topic and download)
  • Enable "USB DEBUGGING" from Menu -> Settings -> Applications -> Development
  • Enable "UNKNOWN SOURCES" from Menu -> Settings -> Applications
  • Set Connectivity mode to MSC from Menu -> Sony Ericsson -> Connectivity -> USB Connection Mode
  • Root Explorer or any file manager that provides access to root (I personally used ES File Explorer)

1. Android Dictionary
Android - Operating System for smartphones and tablets, based on Linux, built by Google, similar to Windows on PC.
Baseband - System of a smartphone, that controls the cellular radio systems(GSM, 3G, HSDPA etc).
Bootloader - Controls the booting process, makes sure that you will access User Interface.
BusyBox - Command line bridge, used to give commands to Android system. You will need app to send commands, it will use BusyBox to send the commands.
Brick - A phone, that you paid a lot for and now you can use it as brick, because it doesn't start up.
CWM/ClockworkMod Recovery - A specific program, that is used before booting to Android. Allows the user to make full backup of system and install custom ROMs, updates etc.
Downgrade - A job, that you have to do, when you want to get from newer firmware to older firmware.
Fastboot - Command Line Tool to edit Android filesystem. Unlike flashmode, this allows flashing unsigned partition images.
Flashmode - Phone mode, where you can freely flash any firmware to your phone via WotanServer or Flashtool.
Kernel - Bridge between hardware and Android, used for hardware information exchange and control hardware parts(CPU etc).
OTA/Over The Air - Updating your phone firmware directly from your phone via 3G or WiFi connection.
RAM - Random Access Memory, data storage area, where are currently in use apps and services. It is used, because it has really high data transfer rate compared to other possibilities(SDcard, hard disks etc).
ROM - Read Only Memory, data storage, where the data can only be read by system itself. It includes all data to start the Android. Many developers edit this ROM to change Android interface.
Root(ing) - Process, during which user gets access to Android system partition and files, giving the possibility to edit Android.
SEUS - Sony Ericsson Update Service, can be used in some cases to get back to newest stock firmware.
WotanServer - A paid application, which can be used to flash any stock firmware version with kernel to your phone.

2. Root your phone – only firmware 4.0.2.A.58 or older
Currently ZergRush method by DoomLord is the simplest way to do it.
NOTE: If you have newer firmware(4.0.2.A.0.62 or 4.0.2.A.0.69), check tutorial 2 first to downgrade your firmware.
  1. Download the attached file from link above, extract it to a folder using any .zip manager, for example 7-Zip.
  2. Connect Phone to USB.
  3. Execute "RUNME.bat" from the extracted folder.
  4. Follow the instructions in the window.
  5. The phone will be rebooted, after reboot you will have Superuser app and your phone is rooted!
  6. Don't forget to thank DoomLord on the original link in the credits

Now you can access system files on your Android. Some file manager apps will require you to set a ticker to get access to the root, ES File Explorer is one of them.

3. Installing stock firmware and downgrading
In the newer firmware, the ZergRush exploit has been blocked. If you want to return to stock ROM or you want to get your phone rooted, you have to install (older) firmware to your phone, which can be done 2 ways:
  • Flashtool, you need to find correct files yourself.
  • WotanServer, you have to register a free account.

Flashtool method
  1. Download the correct firmware file for your phone at the bottom of the post.
  2. Make sure Flashtool is installed.
  3. Place downloaded firmware file(.ftf format) in Flashtool\firmwares(by default C:\Program Files\Flashtool) folder.
  4. Start Flashtool.
  5. Click the lightning button and choose Flashmode.
  6. Firmware should appear there, if you have it in correct folder. Choose it.
  7. Turn off your phone, connect USB cable to computer, then press Volume Down button and connect USB cable to your phone.
  8. Flashtool should detect your phone and starts flashing. Follow the instructions.
  9. When it says „Flashing completed“, unplug your phone and turn it on.

WotanServer method - Is paid method now!!
  1. Go to, make free account and download the client.
  2. Start the client.
  3. It wants to find your phone. Turn off your phone, then connect USB cable to computer, press Volume Down button and connect USB cable to your phone.
  4. WotanClient detects your phone automatically.
  5. Click Advanced Settings and choose firmware (4.0.2.A.0.58 or older if you want to root).
  6. For region, it isn’t a big deal, which one you choose, although picking own one is easier.
  7. Next, enter your free account details(e-mail address and password) and click Update.
  8. Click Next and it will download proper firmware files and automatically install them.
  9. When it’s ready, unplug your phone and turn it on.

After that you can proceed with rooting your phone, which is explained in previous guide. Or just enjoy, that you just installed back stock ROM

4a. Installing ClockworkMod Recovery
NOTE: You must have stock and rooted phone!
NOTE: Most custom kernels already include Recovery.
What you need to do:
  1. Go to this link: and download SE Tweak Installer.
  2. Connect your phone via USB cable.
  3. Start SE Tweak Installer.
  4. Pick CWM, which is for your phone.
  5. Click Install and wait. When it is ready, CWM is installed.

There is one more solution to install Recovery.
  1. Go to Android Market/Play Store.
  2. Search for Xperia CWM Auto-Installer.
  3. Download the app to your phone and start it.
  4. Follow the instructions to install the Recovery.
  5. And enjoy having a recovery.

To enter the Recovery, turn off your phone, then turn it again, when Sony Ericsson logo appears, get ready. When screen gets brighter during Sony Ericsson logo, click Volume down button(I usually keep clicking it until I get into the recovery).

To move around in Recovery, use volume buttons to go up/down, Menu button to enter, Power button for back(in some cases, also back button works).

4b. Installing BusyBox
NOTE: Requires root.
NOTE: If you used zergRush method to root, BusyBox is automatically installed already and you can skip this.
  1. Go into Play Store(Android Market) and search for BusyBox Installer.
  2. Download it and start it.
  3. Follow the instructions and install will be successful.

5. Turning the "brick" into a smartphone
If you had unlocked bootloader and did OTA(Over the Air) update, then you probably ended up with a dead phone, aka brick. Don't worry, it is not completely bricked, still can be saved!
  1. Download file from this post below.
  2. Unpack the .zip file and place the .ftf file in Flashtool\firmwares folder.
  3. Open Flashtool.
  4. Get your phone to flashmode, make sure it is turned off, press down Volume DOWN button and connect USB cable.
  5. In Flashtool, click the lightning button, pick Flashmode and choose the Xperia_2011_FreeXperia_ALL.ftf file.
  6. Let Flashtool finish.
  7. Install stock firmware and kernel to your phone.
  8. Remove USB cable from your phone and start your phone.
  9. Try not to brick it again, less problems for you.

6a. Installing V6 Supercharger
Both can be used to improve the speed of your phone. Supercharger is meant to improve RAM, KAK is for kernel.
  1. Install Script Manager.
  2. Download Supercharger from this topic,, make sure to download the "" file.
  3. Place the file on root of your SDcard, that is the main folder on SDcard(where everything else is).
  4. Open Script Manager, start the V6 Supercharger as normal. You can choose 0 as scrolling speed.
  5. Pick the choice, that you like. I have used Agressive 1 personally(enter the number infront).
  6. When done setup, just exit from the menu (no.17). The result file named 99Supercharger will be generated at /data/ (or in /system/etc/init.d/99Supercharger if you have init.d mod)
  7. (If you use init.d mod, skip this) Open Script Manager, select the /data/, and when the properties window pops up, tag it as "su" and "boot") The ScriptManager will load it at startup and as root, otherwise it will fail.
  8. To test if the script is loaded or not, launch again the setup script(repeat step 4-5) You will find a text like "Launcher is.. xxxxxxx" if it is written as "weak", the script is not running yet. If it is "hard to kill" it is running correctly.

Also, it is recommended to NOT lock home to memory. Home screen will start faster, but at the same time, during other apps, less RAM will be available.

6b. Installing Kickass Kernelizer
This should improve your kernel, haven't tested myself yet.
  1. Go to and download the file.
  2. Open it with Script Manager.
  3. Follow the instructions, I/O tweak is optional, I don't recommend it at this time. Pass when asked.
  4. Press I for Install.
  5. (If you use init.d mod, skip this) Open ScriptManager, select the /data/, when the properties window pops up, tag it as "su" and "boot") The Script Manager will load it at startup and as root, otherwise it will not work properly.
  6. Reboot your phone.
  7. To verify, run it again after reboot and when it offers Verify, choose it.

7. Editing build.prop to optimize your phone's system
Build.prop consists of quite a lot lines, which set up, how some phone functions work. To edit the file, you need root rights and a program to explore root(ES File Explorer, Root Explorer etc).
  1. Making a NANDroid backup in Recovery first is a good idea, because if you make a mistake in build.prop file, and phone does not boot into Android, you can still restore it.
  2. Start your Explorer app and go to directory \system
  3. Open build.prop file with a text editor.
  4. Go with your PC to this post: There are also other tweaks, you can try if you want(you might need init.d script for your ROM for init.d tweaks).
  5. Read the first part of the post, there are some build.prop tweaks, choose which ones you want.
  6. Make modifications in your build.prop file, save it and restart your phone.
  7. Changes should take effect, if you have made a mistake, edit the file again or restore the backup, depending on the situation.

Some more tweaks for build.prop, init.d etc:

8. Enabling WiFi Dual Band and Burst Mode
As the title already, this is to increase the internet speed for WiFi on your phone.
  1. Open Root Explorer, go to \system\etc and open file named tiwlan.ini with Text Editor.
  2. Edit these lines:
    BurstModeEnable = 0
    WiFiAdhoc = 0

    BurstModeEnable = 1
    WiFiAdhoc = 1

    Single_Dual_Band_Solution = 0

    Single_Dual_Band_Solution = 1
  3. Reboot your phone.

9. Unlocking bootloader
Unlocked bootloader is needed for most custom ROMs and for ALL custom kernels. It allows the booting system to be changed.
This can be done via official way or via test point method. Official way also removes DRM keys, which cannot be restored at all.
WARNING: You will lose warranty with this!
  1. Go to
  2. Enter service menu, open keypad and enter *#*#7378423#*#*.
  3. Service Info - Configuration, Bootloader Unlock Allowed: Yes/No. If it says Yes, continue. If it says No, do not continue, because it will not work.
  4. On the website, click "Start Unlocking the bootloader".
  5. In the text, there are instructions, what you need to do. Also there are drivers that are needed for this process. Follow the instructions.
  6. Install the drivers, then click Continue.
  7. Enter your IMEI, name and e-mail. Leave out the last number from the IMEI.
  8. You get a code, leave the website open, you will need this code.
  9. Turn off your phone, then connect USB cable to your PC, hold down Volume UP button and connect USB cable to your phone. Blue LED should light up.
  10. You will be asked for drivers. Point to the usb_driver folder where you placed the android_winusb.inf-file, and select the Android Boot loader Interface-file.
  11. Open command prompt, first enter this
    cd C:\...\android-sdk\platform-tools
    Replace C with the correct drive letter and ... with the path to the android-sdk folder. Next, enter this command

    fastboot.exe -i 0x0fce oem unlock 0xKEY
    Replace KEY with the key that you got from the website.
  12. Bootloader is now unlocked.

  1. Go to this topic
  2. Follow the instructions to unlock bootloader.

10. Installing custom kernel
Most custom ROMs will require a custom kernel, some of these include it already(CM, MIUI etc), other you need to find yourself(Hybrom). Installation is done via fastboot. First, you need to find a custom kernel, that will work on your phone. You can find these from Development section.
  1. Make sure your bootloader is unlocked, enter service menu(*#*#7378423#*#*), Service Info, Configuration, if it says Bootloader unlocked: Yes, then it is unlocked.
  2. Make sure fastboot drivers are installed. These should come with Android SDK.
  3. Download the kernel you want. You will need a .img file, which is mostly inside a .zip file.
  4. From the downloads section, download kernel installation package and extract the folder.
  5. Place the .img file inside the folder. If it's name isn't boot.img yet, rename it to boot.img.
  6. Place your phone in fastboot. Turn it off, connect USB cable to your computer, hold Volume UP button and then connect USB cable to your phone. Blue LED should light UP.
  7. Double-click on the flash.cmd file. It will start fastboot automatically and install the kernel.
  8. When finished, disconnect the cable and turn on your phone.

11. Installing custom ROM
Requirements: Unlocked bootloader, ROM .zip file downloaded.
Nothing difficult here.
  1. Place the downloaded .zip file to the root of your SDcard.
  2. Install the custom kernel, explained in previous tutorial.
  3. Enter Recovery(while booting, when screen gets brighter, press Volume Down button until phone enters Recovery).
  4. Make factory reset, wipe cache partition and clear Dalvik Cache(under Advanced).
    NB! Do NOT make format /system, because some ROMs require files from system folder and installation will not finish if files are not available. Then you have to install stock ROM again.
  5. Choose install zip from sdcard, pick the downloaded .zip file on your SDcard.
  6. Wait for it to finish and reboot your phone.

12. Relocking bootloader
When you return to stock and/or need warranty back, you will need to relock bootloader. First install stock ROM and kernel and then relock bootloader, else you will have problems. Depending on the unlocking method, there are 2 ways to relock.
Start S1 Tool and click Restore button. Should relock the bootloader automatically.
Might also work on Test Point method, but is not tested nor confirmed.
  1. Make sure you have Flashtool installed.
  2. From the downloads section, download file.
  3. Extract the package, there is a .ftf file.
  4. Flash the .ftf file with Flashtool.
  5. Bootloader is locked again

XX. Downloads
Stock firmwares, unrooted.
Big Thanks to benji.berg for collecting these firmwares!
  1. Xperia Mini (ST15i)
    4.0.2.A.0.42 -
    4.0.2.A.0.62 -
  2. Xperia Mini Pro (SK17i)
    4.0.2.A.0.42 -
  3. Xperia Active (ST17i)
    4.0.2.A.0.42 -
  4. Xperia Live with Walkman (WT19i)
    4.0.2.A.0.42 -
    4.0.2.A.0.58 -
    4.0.2.A.0.62 -
  5. Xperia Ray (ST18i)
    4.0.2.A.0.42 -
    4.1.A.0.562 (ICS) -
  6. Xperia Arc (LT15i)
    4.0.2.A.0.42 -
    4.0.2.A.0.62 -
  7. Xperia Arc S (LT18i)
    4.0.2.A.0.42 -
    4.0.2.A.0.62 -
    4.1.A.0.562 -
  8. Xperia Neo (MT15i)
    4.0.2.A.0.42 -
    4.0.2.A.0.62 -!download|16...1246-9107_.ftf
  9. Xperia Play (R800i)
    4.0.2.A.0.42 -
  10. Kernel Installation Package for Xperia phones -
  11. Unbricking Xperia 2011 Package -
  12. Relocking Xperia Bootloader Package -

XX. Frequently Asked Questions
Q. I just installed custom ROM, but phone is frozen at the logo!
A. Did you install custom kernel, which is confirmed to be working with that ROM? If you did everything correctly, it might take a while, because at first boot new caches are created.

Q. Flashtool won't install stock firmware, gives this-and-this error.
A. Make sure phone is in flashmode(turn off, hold down Volume DOWN, connect USB cable). If yes, make sure, that correct drivers are installed. If yes, post here with FULL log, and I will take a look.


 Incoming search terms :
  • Root Sony Xperia Active (ST17)
  • Root Sony Xperia Mini (ST15)
  • Root Sony Xperia Mini Pro (SK17)
  • Root Sony Xperia Live with Walkman (WT19)

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  1. after relocking the boot loader on se lww, still unable to update ota to 0.62.