Lesson #1 for mobile phone hackers

I've been modifying my phones from the instant I had the possibility to run custom software on it. While it was still somehow limited with my Nokia E50 things became quite interesting when I got my HTC Magic. With Android the possibilities for optimization and modification which were possible grew enormously.

Until yesterday I've been pretty lucky. All my modifications on my HTC Magic or recently on my LG Optimus Speed (P990, yes it's back in the meanwhile and working as expected, yay!) never required me to roll back to a backup before my modifications (or were required because for convenience reasons). Well, until yesterday. I did some modifications on the filesystem and aparently in the process some system files were corrupted and not recoverable by e2fsck anymore. When I tried to recover the state before my modifications I was struck by lightning as I realized that I had forgotten to take a backup before. I remembered that I had to wait some time before the backup and I had already been in the correct menu where backups are performed. But out of some reason I didn't do it anymore. Crap.

Well, this little incidend required me to completely reset the device to factory state (by reverting filesystems, applying operating system updates manually, etc.) and reapply the last working backup I had at hand. Which was a week ago. Furthermore I lost all contents of the internal sd-card during the reverting process which I didn't expect to happen. Meh...

As I've been pretty consistent with performing backups before my experiments and modifications I'd like to rephrase the #1 rule for all hackers a bit:

Rule #1: Don't forget to perform and check your backup before applying any changes!

Nevertheless, I'm taking this risk because as the modifications have proven to me with the E50 and the Magic that I can prolong the usual end of life (the point where they're just too old or unusable because of apps) of my mobile phones for 1-2 years compared to the stock and unmodified versions. I wonder, how much life I can squeeze out of the LG dual core...


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