How to Root the Samsung Galaxy S 4G (SGH-T959V)

The Samsung Galaxy S 4G is a slightly tweaked version of the Vibrant on T-Mobile and is similar in most respects to the original device except for its 4G support.  This how-to will show how to root this device running Gingerbread 2.3.6 and if your device is still on Froyo 2.2.1, help you upgrade to Android 2.3.6 and then root it.

I.  Upgrading to Android 2.3.6 Gingerbread

Skip this section if you are already running Android 2.3.6.

1.  Download and Kies Mini.

2.  Make sure USB Debugging is not enabled on your device.  Go to Settings > Application > Development and then uncheck the USB Debugging tickbox to do this.

3.  Open Kies Mini and connect your device to the computer.

4.  Select Kies when your device asks for the type of connection.

5.  Once the device is recognized and the necessary drivers are installed, click Upgrade.

Once your device reboots, it should be running Gingerbread 2.3.6.

II.  Backing up the efs Folder

The files in the efs folder at the root of your device’s file system are very important and if anything should go wrong, these files will aid in getting your device working again.  Here’s how to back them up.

1.  Download and install File Expert.

2.  Open File Expert on your device and click on My Files > Phone Internal Storage.

3.  You should now see a folder named efs here.  Tick the checkbox next to it and then click on Copy.  Now, navigate to a folder on your SD card and paste it there.  You can then connect your device to a computer and back it up in a safe location on your PC.

III.  Rooting the Galaxy S 4G

1.  Download SuperOneClick (mirror).

2.  Extract the you download above to a folder on your desktop.

3.  Enable USB Debugging on your device.  Go to Settings > Application > Development and then check the USB Debugging tickbox to do this.

4.  Connect your device to your PC.

5.  Double-click SuperOneClick.exe from the extracted folder.

6. Click on Donate Later.

7.  Finally, click on Root.

Your Galaxy S 4G should be rooted once it reboots!!

All credits go to shortfuse for creating SuperOneClick tool and to lumin30 for clearing up the finer points of the whole procedure!!  Be sure to thank or donate to them (you can click on Donate Now on the SuperOneClick application when prompted) if you liked this procedure!!

This is part of our Android How To’s. We have how to’s on rooting, loading ROMs, and tons of other tips and tricks for your specific device or for Android devices in general! For all of our Android How To’s, head here.

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  • Brandin Hunter

    I rooted this phone about a month ago and had no luck with roms. I reviewed one of them that actually worked and had a huge flaw (dropped all internet use. WIFI, 3G/4G). Had to keep resetting the phone. All in all, too me this is a phone that should stay stock. Ironically I’m currently using this phone (stock) out of all my phones I have now (2 Vibrants running ICS an a Samsung Sidekick running GB ). It’s does what it needs to do and that’s all I want. By the way I never was able use this 1-click root program on any of my Phones. Not sure why but Odin never fails.

  • Brandin Hunter

    Whoop! Never mine LOL. After I posted this I tired the One click, it didn’t work. I reset and did it again. BOOM!!! Rooted without using Odin.

  • FerociousAndroid

    Updated from 2.2.1 to 2.3.6 then Rooted and donated!


  • yonis gonzalez

    Let me tell u somethinh i been looking arround the internet to be able to root my phone and this guy was the onlyone capable of including especific intructions and downloads to be able to fix it before u broke it and root it on one easy clic so far is been the most he;pfull person i have found THANKS MAN !!!!! FANTASTIC JOB
    by the way this is the second phone i order from t mobile manufacture warranty because every time i try to install a new rom it messes up the phone so bad that has no remedy at all can u post specific intructions on how to properly install a new room on the samsung galaxy s4g ??? if you can just email me pls

  • will kies be able to detect my phone if it is rooted?

  • Vivek

    When I tried using this process, superone click got stucked at Step 7…. Pls help…

    • rockstar_jonez

      I am also stuck on step 7…

  • Murph

    When I try to paste the efs file in a file on my SD card I get an “operation failed” message.

    • Make sure your SD Card isn’t locked.

      • Murph

        Nah, it was unlocked. When I tried to paste it, the efs file would paste, but all the contents weren’t in it. I went ahead & rooted with the remaining instructions and all worked well. I also clicked on the “allow 3rd party software” tab on One Click. Got rid of a lot of unnecessary apps with Titanium Backup, freed up quite a bit of memory. Phone is working fine. Thanks.

        • Great! Glad it worked anyway! Thanks for letting us know!

  • konjon707

    how do you know when your phone I’d rooted. I followed all the steps and at the end said”may ask to click on super user” but when I reseted the phone nothing really happened. Just a normal reboot.

    • Dax Krishna

      try downloading Root Checker Lite from Google Play to know your root status. If it says that your device is rooted but you don’t find the superuser app, download it from Play.

      • jonjon707

        Thx u, I actually flashed my kernel. I am currently using VALAHALLA as my kernel and I used VALAHALLA FINAL as my mod. I am so glad I researched this extensively as I did . With patience and research as well. Thx u for this thread. U made it happen. Thx you.

        • Thanks for letting us know it worked for you! Were happy to help!

  • NICE!!!!! Thank you very much to each and all involved on this it worked like a charme Thank you Again keep up the good work A++++++++++++++++++++++

    • Welcome! Thanks for being a part of our humble community!

  • Troy Turner

    I want to root my phone. I have a Samsung Galaxy S w/the stock SD card. I do not have a PC but I am frickin tired of seeing boxes and not having Unicode. Is there anything that can be done? Will I still be able to root my phone?

  • Hi Dax,

    I have a SGH-T959V UVKJ6 with Gingerbread 2.3.6. I am attempting your SuperOneClick process to root my phone. I used the default psneuter in the Exploit section and it is current stuck at “Running psneuter”.

    Should the exploit been “rangeagaintsthecage”. I saw another set on instructions at “”, here it says I should select “rageagainstthecag” exploit.

    Please suggest next/right steps.

    • Dax Krishna

      what version of SOC are you using? It should work fine with default settings but if it doesn’t, go ahead and try rageagainstthe cage

  • jonjon

    Hi again, I just created an account. Thank you for your knowledge. I’ll be talking to you guys soon

    • Dax Krishna

      Welcome, glad to have you!! 🙂

  • 1st I]d like to thank you for all your good did’s. Help!!!!! a’m a newbe…. obiusly pls b kind…lol, Now I updated to GBd and rtd, Thank you, when I installed that famous file exprt. I do not seet it on my SG-S4G where would it be store??? suposselly it did downloaded it, but I don’t see it any where on my apps or DLds, no where to be found did I mees up againg..??
    My divice it reads GB on about phone everything seem to b working fine help pls will be very much apreciated..
    Thank you

    • Dax Krishna

      glad to hear the procedure worked for you!! How did you install File Expert? Did you do you it on Play via your phone or web? If you have done it through the web-based store, make sure you have data enabled on your device for Google to actually send the app to your device and install it. Also, ES File Explorer is yet another good option for your file manager needs, search for it on Google Play

  • hello back just to add, something downloaded cause the mem usage incresed by 6 megs…..

    • Dax Krishna

      download the GSam Battery Monitor and checking what’s eating it up; then uninstall it!

  • Joey

    when i get to step seven and click the window dont respond. what should i do?

  • Joey

    On step seven when i click root it starts then the window doesnt respond. What should i do?

  • Travis03

    Is there an email I could reach somebody at who can prompt me through every step with more detail?

    • is there a particular problem you are facing Travis? This is a perfectly good place to ask us if you run into any problems if it concerns the above guide

      • Vincent H. Tran

        how to unlock the sg s 4g now sir?

  • File Expert doesn’t allow any copy and pasting from internal memory unless it’s in root. I can’t backup the efs folder that way.

    • jvstorm200

      try super manager…found on android/google play market

  • jmhyphe101

    i’ve been able to soft brick and hard brick my phone 3 times. i had to re-install the stock kernel and i had to recover my phone. i used the JIG method, SUPER UNBRICK. ODIN V1.85. i aslo had to install both drivers for the phone and computer. if any needs help trying to unbrick ther phone or have any questions on anything, ill try to help.

  • only for galaxy s sgh t959v. i’ve been able to soft brick and hard brick my phone 3 times. i had to re-install the stock kernel and i had to recover my phone. i used the JIG method, SUPER UNBRICK. ODIN V1.85. i aslo had to install both drivers for the phone and computer. if any needs help trying to unbrick ther phone or have any questions on anything, ill try to help.

    • iz3y13

      i could use some help. i have the EFS but no idea how to recover this phone. I copied EFS from another phone but exact same model and software.

    • chris

      How can i unlock my galaxy s 4g ? im moving to canada an need it unlockd and t mobile wont doit

  • @facebook-100000842711159:disqus broo!!! i need ur urgent help…r u on skype or msn messenger?

    • what’s going on bro. i only know of sgh t959v.

  • cpkelley94

    does this process delete all of the files/settings/apps/music/pictures/etc. from the phone? or are they all left intact?

    • Dax Krishna

      nope, all your data should be intact, but do make a backup in case anything goes wrong

    • jonjon

      it just does a factory reset on your phone

    • Mahesh Makvana

      Rooting procedures usually don’t wipe off the data. It just gains access to root files and nothing else.

  • zuludss

    i have a sgh-t959v. fw- 2.3.6 – kernel
    i am using a mac and want to root the phone. i cannot run the .exe on my computer. and in debugging mode i cannot transfer files to the phone. can i just plug the phone in, select mass storage and place the superoneclick .exe on the phone and run it from there?
    or is there another process for mac users. when i google the topic most posts seem to be old and i am skeptical.

    • jonjon

      well on windows what i did was install necessary drivers for the computer and phone. only them willbe able to use super one click. I’m not sure if the same applies to mac computers.

    • Dax Krishna

      this procedure above is only for Windows users. What you could do is run a virtual Windows machine and try it on that! Or you could use a friend’s laptop running Windows to do it! 🙂

      • Mike

        I actually used Parallel Desktop

  • Walid

    Will this work for SGH T959W?

    • Dax Krishna

      no Walid, don’t try it on any other device as things could go wrong and you could end up with a bricked device!

  • kcunningham

    soo i could try ‘super manager’ if backing up with the ‘File Expert” doesnt work?

    • Dax Krishna

      yeah, cunningham, any file manager that can browser/edit system folders should be fine!

      • Kat

        What do I do with super manager? Where do I go to find the efs file?

        • Dax Krishna

          Hey Kat, the efs folder will be on your internal storage. By supermanager, I assume you are talking about superuser? You don’t have to do anything with it unless you use a root-requiring app, that’s when superuser will ask your permission to all that app root access.

  • Leslie Solorzano

    So I want to root my galaxy S, but I need to backup my efs folder, but to backup I need to be rooted. its just a tiny bit recursive 😉 what should I do?

    • Akila Costa

      Get the app called supermanager, it is free and no need to be rooted. It allows for moving of the efs folder. I did not have it rooted when I did it, hell i MOVED the thing to get it rooted.

  • joey

    every time i click ”root” it window stops responding! i need force close it every time! how do i fix this?

    • franklin

      just connect ur phone and wait till it says your device is ready to use and then start

    • Mahesh Makvana

      Do the rooting process after your PC has recognized your device.

  • YolyN

    I need some help, I bought a T- Mobile Samsung Galaxy S 4g SGH-T959V without sim card; I have a plan with Walmart MyfamilyMobile-TMobile activated in Walmart when I bought the sim card for this plan. Now, I have a problem, I am going to Spain for Christmas and I thought that I need to unlock the phone to use a Spanish sim card as I’m there and be able to call my family over here but I paid two different companies to get an unlock number with the phones’s IMEI and neither of them could find the unlock number for my phone, both companies returned the money to my account. Then I called my network provider (Myfamilymobile) to unlock the phone but they couldn’t because, they said, it was not one of their phones; so, I called T-Mobile and they told me that they couldn’t give me the code because I didn’t have a plan with them and that I should call Samsung customer services; I called Samsung and they told me that only my network provider could give me the unlock code. So, the chain started again but this time when I called T-Mobile, they told me that I didn’t need to unlock the phone because when Walmart activated the Myfamilymobile sim card in it, they unlocked the phone and it will work with any Spanish sim cards in Spain with no problems. Can anybody please tell me if this is true? I don’t want to get there, buy a Spanish sim card to call my family over here and see that the phone is askong me for an unlock number. What should I do? Please help

    • 312Phoenix

      I hope you have found a solution to your dilemma by now, but if not, call T-Mobile and tell them that you purchased this phone on Ebay but that the ad had said it was an At&t (or some other carrier not affiliated with T-Mobile) and ask them for the unlock code. They will ask you for your name and possibly contact phone number, and then give you the unlock code. You can give them a fake name if you are more comfortable with that. This has worked for me every time I’ve tried it, which has probably been 5 or 6.

  • needhelp

    What Do I do if it it keeps hanging up on step #5?

    • Mahesh Makvana

      Right-click on the “SuperOneClick” executable file and choose “Run as administrator”. It should resolve your problem. If it doesn’t, then something’s probably wrong with your PC, i.e, system files are corrupted, etc.

      Do a clean install of Windows on your PC and then try again.

      I hope you got the answer of your question!

      • CG

        “Run as Administrator” was the right trick… Thx!

  • sam

    hey guys can i use this to root SGH-T959w version it’s android 2.3.6

    • Dax Krishna

      Hey Sam:

      Yes you can. Just skip the first section and continue with the procedure!

  • simon

    I have the galaxy epic 4g and I am trying to open exe files but can’t what can I do to do this

    • Dax Krishna

      you should not be trying this at all if you have a Epic 4G Simon, also are you trying to open the exe files on your mobile? Exe files are meant to be opened on your PC!

  • Algmslucy

    does the phone need to be in usb mass storage mode?

  • Algmslucy

    how long does this rooting process usually take? I have a fairly fast processor on my computer but every time i try this i get as far as checking if rooted and it says false and doesn’t do anything or say anything else. then it says Not Responding in the menu bar.

  • Algmslucy

    Not Responding; Not Responding! Why won’t it work?! I know I’m not an IT major but I can follow simple instructions. HELP!!!!

  • HELP!

    im trying to root my galaxy s 4g and the program keeps stalling at step 7 what do i do?

  • Brockmiera

    This worked perfectly for me the first time. Thank you so much. It sure is nice to have those pointless apps off of my phone eating up memory. A hint for those having issues with it. Take the time to let windows installer do its thing and install all of the components it needs to. I think there were four in total. Once installer was done, I clicked root and boom. success. Thanks again.

  • My phone will not connect to my computer .. I think there is something wrong with the usb port on the phone. Is there a way to upgrade to gingerbread w/o using a computer?

  • Derek Hexley

    Trying to root the wifes fone, but so far keep getting operation failed error on eps backup, any tips?

    • Derek Hexley

      NVM, got it to work with super manager

  • Hugo Hernandez

    BitDefender claims this is is an Android Exploit. Obviously, it’s cracking something, but are we sure this is safe?

  • Sean

    Please Help! I read through this and did not see anything on my particular issue but good answers for others. I hope you can help with my issue. I have a Samsung Infuse. I had it rooted before and then updated to Gingerbread. Now when I turn on Debug mode it will only connect as USG Storage and not with Kies. I cannot unroot or root it now. Any idea how I can get the phone to be in Debug mode and connect using Kies? Desperate here as I have look for days with no luck for an answer.

  • sandy

    Hi ..I bought a Samsung Galaxy S4g , but I can not activate the network in Syria ..How do I activate the network and thank you.

  • zach

    does the device need to be in download mode

  • Max

    when i try to copy my efs folder to my sd card it keeps on saying that the operation failed. What should I do? please help

    • UUbuntu

      I had the same problem. Using SuperManager rather than File Expert allowed me to back up the efs folder to the SD card and to proceed.

  • Jorge

    I follow all de procedure and the process stop in the step # 5


    • AB

      same here, it stops on step #5 I also show m failed on steps 1 and 2

      • Dax Krishna

        are you sure you have updated to Android 2.3.6?

      • MJR

        Me too. And yes, all steps followed as far as I can see. ADB drivers good. Android 2.3.6. USB Debugging mode enabled. Wierd about the Trojans in the Zip file though.

  • If the procedure goes wrong and the phone don’t work how do you restore the phone using the files you saved on your computer with file expert ?

    • Mahesh Makvana

      In case the procedure goes wrong and your device stops responding, you’ll need to flash the stock firmware and then restore the backup your created using File Expert.

      Hope it helps!

  • George Smith

    i try to back up the efs folder, and im getting operation failed.

    • Vic So

      I’m having the exact same issue. It shows “operation failed” after I “paste”. When I check my sd card, the folder is there but its empty. Any ideas?

      • Akila Costa

        Try supermanager app, worked for me and worked for UUbuntu (the guy who posted the solution on your later post).

  • amit

    i have a sgh-t959v at the time of updation from karnel 2.2.1 to 2.3.6 the mobile get hang on starting screen so please help me to start my mobile

  • trevor

    when i click on root it makes the program say not responding what do i do?

    • Dax Krishna

      give it some time Trevor, it should work…are you sure you followed the steps as listed above correctly?

  • confusedhuman01

    There are two trojan horse files in the zipped folder…tried downloading from a different source and the same thing happened

    • MJR

      I see these two trojans as well. My AVG neutralized them and I kept going. But the rooting is not working. Fails on step 1 from what I can tell, though it doesn’t stop till after step 5. Maybe they aren’t really Trojans and are in fact necessary?

  • G

    Worked like a charm. Thank you so much. Had a lot of t-mobile apps that i couldn’t use since i live in another country and this helped me to delete them.

  • Eduardo

    superoneclick has stopped working!!!

  • jerry

    SuperOneClick is infected with virus