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[How to] root Galaxy S3 mini and Install ClockworkMod Recovery

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Rooting Samsung Galaxy s3 mini will allow you to get root access of phone and installing ClockworkMod CWM recovery lets you install custom ROMs in your Galaxy S3 mini. In this tutorial we will learn to root Samsung Galaxy S3 mini i8190 on Android 4.1.2 and will install ClockworkMod CWM recovery tool. Before continuing with the tutorial; double check the correct model of your Samsung Galaxy S3.

Some necessary tasks:

  • Enable USB debugging mode of your phone by going to settings and then Developers options.
  • Although, saved data and apps will not be deleted, however, for safer side create backup of important text messages and contacts.
  • Similarly, make backup of gallery items and other important files.
  • Don’t put your device on charging while rooting and installing CWM recovery tool.

Files required:

Steps to root Samsung Galaxy S3 mini:

  • Turn Samsung Galaxy S3 mini off and then reboot in download mode. Press and hold volume down, power and menu button all at the same time until warning appears on the screen. Press volume up button to enter into download mode.
  • Run Odin3 on personal computer and connect Galaxy S3 mini with computer using data cable. ID: COM box on Odin3 will turn yellow or blue once it has detected Galaxy S3.
  • Now clock on PDA button and select CF Root file already downloaded and saved on desktop. Leave all Odin3 settings at default. Now hit start button to begin rooting.
  • Your phone will restart a few times during the process. Wait until rooting completes and when ID: COM box turns green along with pass message displayed on the screen, unplug phone and restart it in normal mode.

Your device has now been rooted, you can check it by downloading root checking app from play store. Now we can move on to install clockworkMod recovery tool.

Steps to install CWM recovery in Galaxy S3 mini:

  • Switch off your device and then switch on in download mode just like told above.
  • While Odin3 is running, connect your device again with computer after which ID: COM box shall turn yellow. Now select the CF recovery file by clicking on PDA button. Make sure that only F.Reset and Auto Root options are checked while all other are unchecked.
  • Now hit start button to begin installation. Wait until CWM recovery installs in Galaxy S3 mini and then disconnect it from computer. Reboot it in normal mode and you have CWM installed in your smartphone device.

Now that you have successfully rooted and installed CWM recovery in Samsung Galaxy S3 mini i8190, you can install custom ROMs and update your device with additional software. Enjoy updating your Galaxy S3 mini and share with us in comments below of you find any difficulty during installation.

38 COMMENTS

  1. Hello android veterans I’ve followed the suggestion to root my s3 mini. but I have some problems here. when I finished rooting my s3 mini. and follow the following steps to install CWM. but there is a problem with installing CWM. when I tried the second step of installing cwm box COM: ID does not turn into yellow color. but it still green. and when I tried click pda and looking for CF File Recovery. no existing CF file recovery. What should I do? Please help me. I want update my s3 mini to kitkat but i haven’t install CWM.

  2. Once the phone is in “downloading … do not turn off target!!” I connected it to my PC. The driver was installed successfully, but the ID:COM box on the Oden software didn’t update …. nothing changed. What shall I do?

    • Did you enable the USB debugging mode?
      Go to phone settings and find developers options. Then Enable the USB debugging Mode.
      I hope it will work!

  3. Thank you so much for this easy, step-by-step tutorial for the first-time-rooter!

    I’d root my S III Mini right away, but I cant’ download from Mega either. I can access the frontpage, but can’t sign in with my account or download any files. That is a common issue for me on mega.co.nz, the site is great but is down for me 50% of the time. I’m writing from Netherlands, btw.

    Could you please be so king to provide a mirror for all the necessarily files that are currently hosted on mega.co.nz?

  4. Is there no way to install root and CWM via update from zip on SD card? I rooted my Galaxy Y that way. Cant use Odin as it does not come as a Mac Osx version.

    • You can only root and install Custom ROMs via update from SDcard.
      But in order to install CWM, ODIN is required!

      • Maybe on S3 mini, but I installed CWM on the Galaxy Y using zip update from SD which is on the stock recovery menu. Hoped there was a similar process for this phone.

        • yeah, you are right. On devices like galaxy Y, galaxy pocket etc it can be flashed through stock recovery. But for Galaxy S3 mini, ODIN is required.

  5. Worked first time for me 🙂 followed step by step and it worked no problem. The CF auto root problem, i encountered it too, but just googled another source. Phone was rooted in minutes. Great work guys, now if i can just find an unlock source ……………….:-(

  6. Hi! After this process happened,
    Your phone will restart a few times during the process. Wait until rooting completes and when ID: COM box turns green along with pass message displayed on the screen, unplug phone and restart it in normal mode.
    it always reboot or restart.. what shall I do? I can’t continue on CWM recovery process.. Please help me! Thanks!

    • In order to enter in CWM recovery, turn off the mobile. Then turn back on by pressing and holding volume Up+menu+power button. this will take you to CWM recovery mode.

  7. 1. I opened odin 2. i connect sIIImini in pc 3. i rooted the device 4. i restart the device ( and all was nice )
    5. i installed also cwm recovery ( Please tell me how to install rom android kitkat 4.4
    for sIII mini
    *Reply*

  8. Its just not happening for me,i’ve followed everything to the letter,odin detects the phone,i load the necessary file runs for 30 secs or so then i get a fail this has happened 6 times altogether
    Can i ask which PDA button i hit,odin comes up with 5 BL(which is highlighted at 1st) AP CP CSC and UMS which is greyed out tried both BL and AP only not got the guts to try the others.
    Luckily i unplug it all and it boots back to normal,but its now very slow
    Scratching my head here

  9. You have to go with AP button. Try with AP button and write back if you still unable to install CWM. Make sure to enable USB debugging mode from phone’s settings!

  10. I’ve followed all the steps, but now when I turn on my phone I get process android process acore has stopped pop ups. I don’t know what to do, I can scroll through my home screen but can’t open any apps. I’m kind of panicked, can I restore it?

  11. Hi, This happens. There’s nothing to worry about. Reboot phone into CWM recovery. Go to Factory reset option and restore your phone to factory defaults. everything will be back to normal!

  12. I suggest you to install the CWM recovery. After instlling it go to recovery mode and select reset factor restore option. Reset the phone and you will be all fine.

    This problem is called bootloop. This commonly happens while upgrading phone. There is nothing to worry about.

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