HTC Hero Forum

Root Does rooting void your warranty?

Hi all, does rooting void your warranty?

I have been Googling and some say it does, and some say it doesn't!

Could anyone give me a straight and correct answer? :p



#1 Brad, Nov 3, 2009
As far as Orange are concerned, they've told customers that it does. Of course, that only applies if the handset is actually rooted when it's returned to them.... ;)
#2 Slug, Nov 3, 2009
Likewise with Vodafone UK :D

They say if you root your phone it is "Modifying" it hence voiding the warranty with them however they were unsure if this voids the warranty with the Manufacturers of the Handset {HTC for the Hero}.

But I like Slugs suggestions :p
#3 Carl C, Nov 3, 2009
Can you unroot the HTC Hero? If so how?
#4 Quazar, Nov 3, 2009
Hard reset should do it I think.
#5 Diamondis, Nov 3, 2009

No it wont.... if you've rooted you will have to restore (reinstall) a stock build recovery and to un-root
#6 noonehereyet, Nov 3, 2009
By restoring the Nandroid backup you made and carefully filed away prior to rooting. You'll need to reflash the original recovery image too if you replaced it before making the backup.
#7 Slug, Nov 4, 2009 has an article on unrooting for warranty purposes.
#8 SFA_AOK, Nov 4, 2009
Has anyone had any direct experience of a repair being refused? I seriously doubt in practice that it would be a problem unless the modification had directly caused the malfunction.
There are so many things that you can do to modify a smartphone's software - just look at all the apps that can be legitimately installed - it is like a PC manufacturer refusing to honour a hardware warranty because it didn't approve of the software setup. I would be surprised if a repair department even bothered (or had the time ) to delve into things like this. Also I have never been directly told by my provider about any exceptions to my warranty.
#9 phillevy, Nov 4, 2009
I wouldn't risk it, manufacturers will look for any excuse to void your warranty!
#10 Quazar, Nov 4, 2009
The whole point of these phones is how you can customise the software - if anyone can show me a specific warranty exclusion in writing from Orange, then I would agree and not risk it. As I said, I wasn't told anything when I got the phone and have yet to see anything in writing either.
#11 phillevy, Nov 4, 2009
Okay, so it does void your warranty, but you can un-root. Is the un-root detectable?
#12 Brad, Nov 4, 2009
If you restore a complete pre-root backup I don't see how it can be otherwise.
#13 Slug, Nov 4, 2009
Let me see if I can explain "rooting"

This isn't a perfect analogy, but it works...
Using a PC as an example... if you install windows on a PC, there will be a bunch of files put on your hard drive that understands how to make the the processor, memory, video card, etc in the PC work. This is similar to what had been done on your phone except that instead of a hard drive a solid state flash is used for persistent memory (persistent memory or ROM holds its value when powered off). This is different ROM then your SDCard.

If I take that same PC, erase everything and then install Linux, which also knows how to make all of that hardware work, the computer works, but things are different. You could say that you just "rooted" the PC as the term is used with Android.

To get back to Windows I could restore the hard drive from a backup and it would work exactly as it did before Linux was installed.

The difference is that rooting typically uses the same operating system with some tweaks to make things operate differently. If you have a backup of the old software, you can reflash the ROM and it will be back to where it was when you started. Note that you would also have to restore the SDcard to get things back to where they were... think of the sdcard as a second hard drive in your phone.

So rooting consists of optional back up an image of the flash memory in your phone and then installing some other software by flashing the ROM inside your phone. To get back you can just reinstall from your backed up ROM.

Hope this helps,

#14 ceiring, Nov 6, 2009
Very comprehensive explanation of rooting but this doesn't really get us any closer answering the OP's original question ie is the warranty on a rooted (unrestored) phone void even if the fault is unrelated to the rooting? I would like some actual links to back this up if it is.
#15 phillevy, Nov 6, 2009
Sorry.... I should have stated my conclusion.

This is completely unofficial, but there shouldn't be any way for anyone to know that you have been flashing ROMs if you make a backup and then restore prior to anyone "official" seeing the phone. On the other hand, unless you are complete geek, there is probably not a reason to root the Hero, especially with 2.0 features on the horizon.

When flashing ROM chips, there is always a chance that something doesn't go as planned, and there is a chance of hosing up the phone if thing go bad in the wrong way. If the rooted or original ROM doesn't get back onto the chip correctly, then it is going to be difficult to explain.

You will probably not get automatic updates from Sprint if you root and you may not even be able to automatically install updates depending on what rooted ROM you install.

#16 ceiring, Nov 6, 2009
Thanks but we really need some kind of official confirmation - my take is that an unrelated hardware fault should make it unneccessary to worry about reverting back - unless someone can prove otherwise.
As far as rooting is concerned I see that there are always new things on the horizon (beyond 2.0 as well) and at the moment for no other reason it is worth it just to use APPS2SD( disregarding all the performance improvements of a custom ROM). As long as you are careful, it is very hard to brick the phone and most situations can be brought back from the brink!
#17 phillevy, Nov 6, 2009
A friend stated that if you need to return your phone to Orange and want a replacement unit, either report it as lost/stolen or render it un-bootable. That way it won't matter if its rooted or not. :D
#18 agent-5, Nov 6, 2009
IMO, if I were the manufacturer or carrier and you did something completely unsupported to my hardware that could go around any restrictions that I have put on a phone and allow that phone to be used on networks other then mine, I would tell you that you are on your own.
#19 ceiring, Nov 6, 2009
Not at all. You don't replace the OS on the handset, you merely grant 'superuser' access. A better analogy imo would be a normal limited user account under Windows versus an administrator with UAC disabled. Even then you're not really close to the power of SU on a Linux-based system.

Back to the question.... my response was merely what someone else related, having asked the question of Orange CS themselves. I've no first-hand experience to offer.
#20 Slug, Nov 6, 2009
IMHO, why worry if rooting voids your warranty? You've got a really great device, your contract is only going to last a maximum of about 24 months, just enjoy it while you've got it and look forward to upgrading to something better in 2 years (or less) time.
#21 agent-5, Nov 6, 2009
I stumbled across this and thought I'd add I wee bit to it.

Q1: Does a Root void your warrenty?
A1: Yes, I own a Hero bought out right without contract. My warrenty states that modification voids the warrenty. I beleive this is because HTC/GOOGLE have not stated that the software/firmware/hardware you may use is not going to damage it. Therefore they cannot be held to account to any damage done as a result of this modification as they have no control over it.

Q2: Is it detectable once it is restored to orginal?
A1: I have no idea but I'm sure HTC/GOOGLE have something hidden that could hold onto any information regarding the phones history.

I think the key question is, is it worth it.
#22 linearcraig, Dec 18, 2009
Q3 is it worth it for HTC/Google/Orange/Tmobile to have some geek spending a lot of time working out if every returned phone has previously been rooted?

A3 very unlikely.
#23 wuthton, Dec 18, 2009
Im a being silly, but would the system not hold a date that the ROM was installed so, by re installing the original ROM that date would change, thus your provider being able o tell you have played with the ROM ?
#24 Jaffa, Dec 18, 2009
I'm sure it's very, very easy for them to check if you've messed with the ROM.

It's really a bad idea if you've just bought the phone. You get a generous 2 year warranty, and unless you reallly really think you'll benefit from a custom ROM, it just seems pointless.

And they, like any company, will do anything to get out of honouring your warranty.

To those people who say they weren't told, explicitly, by Orange that modifying a ROM voids don't have to be told explicitly. It'll be in the small print, somewhere, either in HTC's T&Cs or in the network's T&Cs. It's always somewhere.
#25 Bhav, Dec 18, 2009