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Slidepad 704ce and 704cet - JB 4.1.1 : Root your Tablet

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Memup Slidepad 704ce / 704cet are very affordable Android 7' tablets with a Allwinner A13 SoC (Cortex A8 processor), 4 Gb flash memory, 512 Mb RAM, a microSD connector and a fully working micro USB OTG port.

Memup posted on their web site some new Jelly Bean 4.1.1 firmware version for these 2 tablets. This firmware is flashable thru a tool provided in the firmware archive called LiveSuit. For Slidepad 704 ce, the Jelly Bean firmware version runs very well, it is much smoother than previous ICS build.

But main drawback of these firmware is that they are not pre-rooted.

On Slidepad 704ce, I tried to flash a signed version of SuperSU from the stock recovery (3e). It has been accepted, but it didn't flash the /system partition. Any unsigned upate has been refused by the stock recovery. Then I tried with no luck to root the tablet with latest ICS/JB adb restore exploit.

As no other exploits are available at this time for Jelly Bean, what to do ? To stay with an unrooted tablet ? Too sad ... As Santa Claus says : If the door is closed, enter by the window. If the window is closed, enter by the chimney :-)

So I decided to try the hard way : by cooking the original Memup ROM to include ClockWorkMod Recovery natively. This allows to root it by flashing an unsigned su update. And after lots of efforts, it worked !

LiveSuit only runs on Windows OS. The following guide has been run from a Windows XP computer.

So, let's start ...

The basic principle of this ROM cooking is to start from official memup ROM, to replace the useless Stock Recovery (3e) by an A13 compatible ClockWorkMod Recovery and to flash the resulting ROM back to the tablet. It is now possible to root the tablet by flashing SU with the new Custom Recovery.

You have to understand that flashing firmware on your tablet and rooting it is always a little bit risky. You will surely void your waranty.
Read it fully beforehand and do not start it if you do not feel confident. So, if you go further, do it at your own risk. But it's worth taking it !

I've designed this guide having a Memup Slidepad 704ce in hand.
Memup Slidepad 704cet is replacing Slidepad 704ce and it seems to use a different touchpad, not compatible with the Slidepad 704ce original ROM.
As many people asked for it, I've cooked a ROM for Slidepad 704cet as well. This ROM has been tested succesfully by few persons, but not by me.
So ... just feel a little bit more courageous if you own a Slidepad 704cet   :-)

1. Hardware

Here is a lsmod of the Slidepad 704ce :

8192cu 575431 0 - Live 0x00000000     (Realtek 8192CU Based Wifi Module)
rtl8150 10305 0 - Live 0x00000000
mcs7830 7581 0 - Live 0x00000000
qf9700 9152 0 - Live 0x00000000
asix 24601 0 - Live 0x00000000
sun5i_csi0 33868 0 - Live 0x00000000
hi704 19680 1 - Live 0x00000000    (Hynix 704 fixed focus CMOS camera)
videobuf_dma_contig 6243 1 sun5i_csi0, Live 0x00000000
videobuf_core 20242 2 sun5i_csi0,videobuf_dma_contig, Live 0x00000000
cedarx 11468 0 - Live 0x00000000     (multimedia co-processing)
mma7660 7044 0 - Live 0x00000000
mali 113879 8 - Live 0x00000000
ump 34062 17 mali, Live 0x00000000
goodix_touch 17352 0 - Live 0x00000000    (capacitive touch controller)
goodix_touch_811 18466 0 - Live 0x00000000    (capacitive touch controller)
nand 126290 8 - Live 0x00000000

here is the lsmod of a Slidepad 704cet (thanks to Giuseppe Pinto) :

mxc622x 6088 1 - Live 0xbf10b000
mecs 4078 2 - Live 0xbf107000
cdc_subset 1588 0 - Live 0xbf103000
cdc_eem 2915 0 - Live 0xbf0ff000
cdc_ether 7651 0 - Live 0xbf0f9000
rtl8150 10305 0 - Live 0xbf0f2000
mcs7830 7581 0 - Live 0xbf0ec000
qf9700 9152 0 - Live 0xbf0e5000
asix 24601 0 - Live 0xbf0d9000
usbnet 26229 6 cdc_subset,cdc_eem,cdc_ether,mcs7830,qf9700,asix, Live 0xbf0cc000
sun5i_csi0 30811 0 - Live 0xbf0bf000
gt2005 28244 0 - Live 0xbf0b3000
gc0308 22312 1 - Live 0xbf0a9000
videobuf_dma_contig 6251 1 sun5i_csi0, Live 0xbf0a4000
videobuf_core 20242 2 sun5i_csi0,videobuf_dma_contig, Live 0xbf09a000
cedarx 9351 0 - Live 0xbf093000
mali 150822 4 - Live 0xbf061000
ump 49074 15 mali, Live 0xbf04e000
ft5x_ts 50464 0 - Live 0xbf000000

2. Download the new ROM

According to your tablet, you need to download one of these ROM available from my Google Drive:

Both ROM have been cooked following the Slidepad 704ce - Cook your own ROM  procedure.

It is the extact Memup Jelly Bean ROM, but with a Custom Recovery based on ClockWorkMod 6.0.1.2.

If you buy a Slidepad 704ce nowadays, there is lots of chance that you are in fact having a Slidepad 704cet in hand.
It seems that Memup is now only selling Slidepad 704cet but some with a Slidepad 704ce package ...
According to Memup site, your tablet is a real Slidepad 704ce if your packaging is having a 3700020512497 barcode.
If your touchpad is not working after the ROM flashing, just try the other ROM ...

3. Flash the Image with LiveSuit

You can now flash your new ROM with LiveSuit.

LiveSuit is available from Memup site. It is also included in the Slidepad 704ce / 704cet Jelly Bean 4.1.1 firmware archive from Memup.

An english User Manual in included in the archive. Just follow it to flash the new ROM in the tablet.

The tablet detection by Livesuit is quite tricky.
To be on the safe side, you have to follow exactly these steps.
In case of any problem restart this sequence from the first step (your tablet should really be off !)

  1.  Switch the tablet off by pressing Power button for 10-15 seconds to force it off
  2.  Press the Vol + button and keep iot pressed
  3.  Plug the USB cable in the PC while Livesuit has been loaded with the ROM image
  4.  Pump on the Power button once a second as long as you don't get a new window asking you to format or not the tablet (this can take up to 20 seconds to come).

If you follow exactly these steps, you should enter into Livesuit mode.

The flash process should take 4 minutes and your slidepad 704ce / 704cet should reboot afterward.

4. Root from ClockWorkMod Recovery

Last step is to root the tablet thru the newly flashed CWM Recovery.

The standard SuperSU Update won't work for Slidepad 704ce / 704cet, as it is not mounting /system partition from a standard nand block.

So, I've modified the SuperSU 0.96 update to :

  • properly mount /system from /dev/block/nandd
  • provide Busybox
  • provide Root Browser Lite
  • provide AdAway
  • provide updated build.prop to set resolution to 132 DIP & to simulate a Nexus 7 for Google Play

You can download this SuperSU 0.96 Update modified for Slidepad 704ce/704cet and copy it to a microSD card placed in the tablet expansion slot.
(internal sd card will work on Slidepad 704ce but not on Slidepad 704cet)

Switch off your tablet by pressing Power for 10 seconds.

Start CWM Recovery by pressing Vol + and Power for 10 seconds, release Power when Memup logo comes and release Vol + one second later.

You should now enter CWM Recovery.

slidepad-704ce-cwm

Select the menu Install zip from sdcard, select the file slidepad704ce-jb-supersu096-tweaks.zip and flash it.

android-supersu-iconYour tablet is now fully rooted.

After next reboot, you should get the Superuser icon in your applications list.

5. Install Applications for Rooted Devices

Now that your Slidepad is rooted, first thing to do is to install some very interesting applications from Google Play market.

  • BusyBox : BusyBox combines tiny versions of many common UNIX utilities into a single small executable.
    It provides replacements for most of the utilities you usually find in GNU fileutils, shellutils, etc.
  • Root Browser Lite : File manager
  • Ad Away : Remove the add banners you get with more and more applications.
    As it work at the /etc/hosts level, it is a real add killer.

 

Hope it helps !

Signature Technoblog

This article is published "as is", without any warranty that it will work for your specific need.
If you think this article needs some complement, or simply if you think it saved you lots of time & trouble,
just let me know at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Cheers !

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