Rooting your Samsung Galaxy S5 is a cinch and you can use the following for all your needs in learning how to crack the internal system so it’s fit for installing a custom ROM, extra apps from the Play store and custom firmware. Who doesn’t want to deck their smartphone out with new themes and customizing the design of the OS to better suit their needs?

If you do open up the system internals away from the manufacturer’s restrictions, you are opening up the device to unleash its real potential. In addition to the tweaks I mentioned before, you can overclock the CPU for better performance, create better battery life by removing the bloatware and more. Bloatware is a series of default applications your device manufacturer installs along with Google and potentially the phone carrier network too. It’s common to see Verizon install some of their own apps in a mobile that’s subscribed to their carrier network. Many people find these default apps useful. However, when we install apps and programs it’s taking away from the device performance. Imagine having a full car load of people instead of yourself just driving the car. It’s the same thing! The device won’t go as fast just like your car won’t either. Thankfully we can remove those apps when we want. To perform operations such as these can’t be done with a stock smartphone or tablet. First you must unlock the bootloader and issue the root access. That allows us to perform tasks with command lines, in a custom recovery mode and with the help of work by third-party developers.

Android lollipop

We love your enthusiasm to unlock the system internals. However, before we start you ought to read up on the list of essentials. Here you’ll learn what you need in preparation before starting the steps, what the risks are involved, how to stay out of trouble and most importantly: how to fix issues if you are in trouble.

  • There are different versions of the Galaxy S5. Each handset comes with a unique model number. The numbers are decided by two things: the area or region and the phone carrier network. In the United States most major carrier networks have their own model number. Other parts of the world have model numbers for the region. In this instance we must use the G900K variant of the S5. Do not try using the following on any other number. To check what you have you can turn on the device, tap the ‘Settings’ followed by ‘About Device.’
  • You must backup the OS data before starting if you want to air on the side of caution. Backup the markets apps, phone contacts and SMS texts with Helium for Android. Backup and restore the EFS folder using EFS IMEI partition backup.  If you only make a copy of one thing let it be the EFS folder. It’s vital to your system if you are rooting, installing a custom ROM or flashing Firmware. Users are sometimes stuck without the International Mobile Equipment Identity because the Encrypted File System is wiped during the installation. That means you are left without the IMEI. However, by backing it up you can easily restore the number.
  • Download and install the Samsung USB Drivers for the computer. Without the up to date drivers the computer and the phone cannot understand each-other.
  • You must have a computer for completing the guide. We always transfer files via the computer to the phone instead of directly from the download link to the phone. It’s safer that way. If people are directing you in other ways from the sites, you should look for another guide.
  • Temporarily disable the antivirus, malware, spyware and adware protection from the computer. Likewise, do the same from the Android applications if you have any running.
  • You can brick the device if the worse case scenario presents itself. We are not liable for any damages. Look at the XDA Developers forum for instructions on how to fix your problems. That’s where third-party developers hang out who often create solutions for similar issues.
  • Allow USB Debugging permissions from the Developer Options menu. Inside you may tap the ‘enable’ box. You can’t find the ‘Settings’ menu until you turn on the device.
  • Don’t dabble in rooting your phone unless you are an advanced Android user. Read up on plenty of our posts to learn more about unchaining the OS if you don’t have much knowledge.
  • There are many developers and tools for unlocking the internal hardware. In this case, since it’s a foreign handset, the link to the file is also foreign. You can trust that the link is safe.

Since we are installing a custom recovery along with the secondary part, let’s start with installing ClockworkMod:

  • Download ClockworkMod here.
  • Download a suitable version of Odin.
  • Run the Odin app with admin rights.
  • Connect the phone to the computer.
  • Click the PDA/AP button and upload the CWM file.
  • Leave the default settings including “auto reboot.”
  • Click the start button to flash the custom recovery.
  • Now you can start with the steps.

How to root Galaxy S5 SM-G900K on Android 5.0 Lollipop

  1. Download the Sphinx rooting tool here.
  2. Download the SuperSu zip file here.
  3. Connect the phone to the computer using the USB cable.
  4. Turn off the phone.
  5. Boot it up in recovery mode.
    – Volume Up + Home + Power keys
  6. Select “install zip from SD card.”
  7. Select “choose zip from SD card.”
  8. Confirm you wish to upload the package.
  9. Go back and apply the same, but this time uploading the SuperSu file.
  10. Go back to the main recovery menu.
  11. Select “reboot system now”
  12. You are running with root access after the OS reboots.

You can download the root checker and unroot free version to check if you have unchained the OS. Furthermore, you can install the paid pro version here that allows you to revert back to stock Android without root access. That’s handy if you wish to return your device back to how it was before you started the guide.

Your best ticket out of trouble is applying the factory reset. here’s how you can factory reset your Samsung Galaxy S4 phone:

  • Turn the power off entirely.
  • reboot the phone
  • Boot it up in recovery mode.
  • Pick the ‘wipe data/ factory reset’ option.
  • Confirm it’s what you want.