Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Galaxy Tab 2 7.0" P3100 upgrade from 4.0.4 to Jellybean 4.2.2 with CyanogenMod 10.1 M3

After reading some reviews, I decided to brave the rooting experience and upgrade my shiny new Tab 2 to Android 4.2.2 using the instructions on the CyanogenMod wiki.

While it was fairly straight forward, I did run into a couple of snags namely;

  1. The Download Mode initiation for the P3100 is incorrect. Hold the Volume Down and Power Button simultaneously.
  2. The Recovery Mode button sequence was not identified. Hold down the Volume Up and Power Button simultaneously.
  3. As the P3100 has an External SD Card slot, this is the easiest way to get the new CyanogenMod firmware onto your device. It also avoids the need for the Android SDK and getting your head around sending command line instructions which were not spelled out in the guide. I'd also had no previous experience with the Android Debug Bridge (adb) mentioned in the Wiki.
  4. After copying the CyanogenMod firmware and Google Apps package to the SD card, koush's ClockworkMod Recovery software could not find any files on the card. I navigated through the extensive menu using the Volume Up and Down buttons with Power button to enter and unmounted the External SD card and then mounted it again. The zip files were now visible.
The upgrade is absolutely fantastic and I can't believe how much better 4.2.2 is over 4.0.4. The only thing I'm missing is the Clipboard history paste function that was in my stock 4.0.4 firmware and I haven't found a clipboard manager that allows me to access the clipboard history when using the paste feature yet.

Other than that, the cm-10.1-20130411-EXPERIMENTAL-p3100-M3 seems extremely stable and fast and has given my Tab 2 a whole new life. Well worth the upgrade!

P.S I had problems with very high battery drain with Exchange services under 4.0.4 which drove me to despair and after not finding a solution online, I was keen to see if it was related to the actual Android firmware. Seems it was as my Exchange services battery drain has gone from 60~86% (yes, 86%!) to <5% when syncing and nothing when the Exchange mail is idle!