Every Android device has, what is called, a recovery image on it. This is basically a part of the Android operating system that you or the manufacturer can access if your device becomes unresponsive and then use it to restore your device.
A custom recovery image, however, is a recovery image that a developer has altered that can not only help the device if it becomes responsive, but also has the added benefits of allowing us to make major changes to the operating system and have even further customizations on your device.
In this procedure, we’ll show you how to flash a custom recovery on your Sony Xperia SP.
After flashing a custom recovery on Xperia SP, you’ll be able to:
- Perform full backups of your device (literally save EVERYTHING from it).
- Increase your device’s performance (after flashing something called a kernel).
- Increase your device’s battery life.
- Flash custom ROMs (these make it possible to flash a newer version of Android, totally new user interfaces, add tons of new features, and much more).
Interested? Here’s how to flash a custom recovery on your Xperia SP:
I. Before You Begin
1. This procedure is meant to work with the Sony Xperia SP running 12.1.A.0.266 firmware (Android 4.3). Do not try this on any other device or an Xperia SP running other firmwares.
2. You will need to have your device’s bootloader unlocked for this procedure to work. Head over to the Sony site for instructions on how to do this. Beware though, you will lose your warranty once you unlock your bootloader!
3. Back up everything you feel is important and charge your device to 75% or more before you begin to prevent data loss and unwanted shutdowns.
4. Make sure you have the necessary drivers installed before you start. If you are unsure, downloading and installing the Flashtool application. If they are not installed automatically, look for the Drivers folder in the Flashtool installation folder.
II. Necessary Downloads
2. SP_DooMLoRD_AdvStkKernel_FW-XXX_vXX.elf [Link available under Download links section of this post]
III. Installing ClockworkMod Recovery on the Sony Xperia SP
1. Extract adb-fastboot.zip to a folder on your desktop.
2. Copy SP_DooMLoRD_AdvStkKernel_FW-XXX_vXX.elf to the extracted folder.
3. Hold Shift on your keyboard and right-click on any white space in the extracted folder, now click on Open command window here to start a command prompt window.
4. Connect your device to your PC in fastboot mode. To do this, power down your device; now, hold the Volume Up key and connect your device to your PC using a compatible microUSB cable.
5. Run the following commands (ignore text in brackets as that is for informational purposes only):fastboot devices [If you have the proper drivers installed, you should see your device recognized as a string of alphanumeric characters; if not, reinstall drivers and try again] fastboot flash boot SP_DooMLoRD_AdvStkKernel_FW-XXX_vXX.elf [Flashes the ClockworkMod Recovery and custom kernel to your device] fastboot reboot [Reboots your device]
IV. Rooting the Sony Xperia SP
To root your Sony Xperia SP, head to our easy-to-use guide here.
All set! Now, you can head to our How to Flash a Custom ROM procedure for the Xperia SP to open up a whole new world of customizations for your Android device!
By the way, don’t be scared, you can always put your device back to stock by heading to our Rooting How To’s section, finding your device, and doing the How to Unroot listed for it there.