Samsung Galaxy S9+ (SM-G965F) /e/ installation TWRP blocked (RMM STATE: Prenormal)

Hello /e/ Team,

First I would like to thank you for your hard work to offer a “privacy first” OS to the general public :blue_heart:

I would love to try /e/ OS so I have decided to install it on my Samsung Galaxy S9+ (SM-G965F / Android 10) but I couldn’t succeed to install the OS on my device so after hours of research and trying different way to install the OS I’m thinking to abandon :disappointed:

Before completely stopping my efforts I would like to try my luck with the /e/ community on this forum.

My issue is that I can not boot in TWRP.

What I have already tried so far:

  • /e/ Installer → I’m blocked after the key combination to restart/boot in TWRP. I always do a quick switch between Bixby + Power + Volume down to Bixby + Power + Volume up but after several test it never booted in TWRP

  • Manual installation with Zadig & Heimdall → Same issue, Zadig works, testing of Heimdall version works, Heimdall heimdall print-pit command works but the next step doesn’t work ( heimdall flash --RECOVERY recoveryfilename.img --no-reboot)
    (ref documentation: Install /e/ on a Samsung Galaxy S9+ - “star2lte”)

  • Manual installation with Odin → Same issue, the connection port shows connected but the installation of TWRP.TAR fails

I believe Samsung has blocked the possibility to install TWRP in the latest OTA update.

If anyone has an idea to help me installing TWRP, I would greatly appreciate your help :innocent:

/e/ Installer → The phone screen after reboot:

Hello @Anonymous and welcome to the /e/ forum.

Two images shows RMM STATE : Prenornal, one shows KG STATE : Checking.

Any phone showing Prenormal will not accept a Custom ROM; as in

Only official released binaries are allowed to be flashed(RECOVERY)

We have to find the reason for this ! (From the time of your post, perhaps you are in the USA, and this is an imported device?)

Please read for suggestions of the cause in the later sections of this article: Know your hardware - Samsung (It is a long post, but please check for the key words I used in the Contents section.)

Hi @aibd, Thank you for your response, I will read the shared article.
I’m located in Australia, here is the version software of my phone:

Thanks, USA was a pure guess – here we see problems with black market imported devices which cannot satisfy their Region Lock (my article refers).

A brand new device may have a Prenormal period by default.

@aibd the article is very instructive and did bring some added knowledges to my previous search.

From my what I know this 2nd hand device was purchased in Australia and I have used it for the last 2/3 years here. The Service provider SW ver. shows “TEL” which stands for TELSTRA an Australian provider. Why do you think or where do you see this is an imported phone?

Also, what would be the recommended next steps from here?

Thanks in advance for your precious help!

There is no reason for me to think this. Could it be the case that it was imported from a different region?

or where do you see this is an imported phone?

I do not know a way to tell this for certain. It might be possible to search for a certain two digits in the IMEI number that show the country of original manufacture. This does not signify the same as intended market.

However combined with other intelligence it might help. Is Samsung free to sell this model in Australia. (Whether an authorised reseller was involved is hard to tell for definite with a 2nd hand device.) Local Samsung support may be able to help. On the other hand if it was say manufactured in India and local Samsung say that they do not distribute Indian manufactured devices in Australia, this would point to a grey import. (Just for example.)

In your images there is more information which I have not processed, others may see more clues !

1 Like

Thank you for your response @aibd.

I have confirmed with the seller that this phone was purchased directly from the service provider TELSTRA.

I’m looking forward for more analysis of my issue by the /e/ Team and other /e/ specialists on this forum in order to define next steps in my testing.

I really would like to be able to use my S9+ with /e/ OS :blush:

Hi aibd,

I’ve got the same problem with the owner of this post. Mine is S9+ SM-G965F EMEA version with Exynos chip. I think the key problem is the “dm-verity” added to this model to prevent rooting. I hope the team will get a solution to solve this problem.

Hi @Aibd,

I managed to use the below old link to go to TWRP but I forgot to download the /e/ zip files to my phone before. So I need to go back and reboot from the system since I don’t know what to do next.

My questions now is the instructions for the manual installation are different between this old link and the new link as below:
https://doc.e.foundation/devices/star2lte/install

So does it mean that I will be able to install it if I follow the instructions for manual installation? Do we need to run the commands for Heimdall?

Thanks!

You have to fisrt properly unlock the bootloader

Firstly thank you for wording your report so well – with RMM STATE : PRENORMAL the solution is so hard to find in an online search because there are so many causes but owners cannot tell what is their blocker !

Carrier locking now looks the favourite – thanks @piero – please can you contact TELSTRA support and ask them to unlock your phone. Generally, in Europe, if your have owned the phone for over 12 months, this is just a formality, sometimes with a few arbitrary hurdles on the way. I imagine you could tell then that you do not actually want to leave their service just have the locks removed.

Good luck

Hi @shoukova welcome to the /e/ forum.

I am going to ask you to redefine “the same problem” so I reduce the amount of nonsense I might write ! You are in Australia ? Exactly what else is in common with the OP ?

You mention EMEA – do you think yours is a grey import ?

An image of your Download mode screen may throw some light, but I assume that you are seeing RMM STATE : PRENORMAL or KG STATE : PRENORMAL or KG STATE : Checking ?

I would prefer to answer your further questions with the full picture. Both tutorials are valid – the different approaches are mostly due to the fundamental difference between Linux and Windows. The manner in which Samsung shroud their methods by asserting that Odin is leaked to Windows and nothing to do with them does not help document writers !

Regards rooting, while connected to the wider subject, /e/ does not require or expect rooting – I like to avoid it as an exploitation method for /e/.

What do you mean by “properly unlock the bootloader”? I did press the three keys according to instructions…

Hi @aibd,

I mean I can’t login to TWRP screen using easy installer after the download. I’m in HK and got that EMEA exynos S9+ SM-965F. I don’t know if it’s becoz of the regional lock as you mentioned. I don’t RMM State at all.

But I did get into the TWRP screen once when I followed the steps in the below link for old phone, of course with update img / tar files for S9+:

However, I noticed I forgot to downloaded the /e/ zip file for S9+ at that time and I chose to reboot it to the system.

When I compared the /e/ installation for old model SM-J500FN with the updated instruction for command line installation for S9+ (Install /e/ on a Samsung Galaxy S9+ - “star2lte”), I found that I needed to install a custom recovery by heimdall. But this step was not shown in the installation guide for SM-J500FN. So my questions are:

  1. Can I just follow the old installation guide for SM-J500FN but with the update files for S9+?

  2. I notice the difference on “wipe” the data on the phone. Should we follow the memory wiping guidelines of SM-J500FN for S9+ as below?

  3. If I wipe away all the data but fail on the installation in the end, will I still be able to reboot back to system? Is the disc image file “recovery-e-0.23-q-20220406175186-dev-star2lte” the same as the Samsung ROM file downloaded from sammobile site? The Samsung ROM file for S9+ is missing on the sammobile site.

  4. Is the command line installation the only way to install /e/ OS on S9+?

Thanks so much for your assistance and patience.

Hi @shoukova I am sorry that my reply is going to sound negative to you but I would like to help you get your phone running /e/ but on a different thread to avoid further crossed wires !

As a new user of the forum you may not be able to do this. Please can you try to return to your last post with “Edit”. Can you then copy and paste its contents to the new tread which I will open and link. If this works, please can you later delete the post here. Please standby, thank you.

Samsung Galaxy S9+ (SM-G965F) TWRP fails for reason unknown @shoukova you may edit the in initial post if this works for you ! Thank you.