UPDATE: There’s an easier method now, please see How to Root Galaxy Tab 10.1 the Easy Way!
I’ve recently got a retail white 16GB Galaxy Tab 10.1 over at BestBuy.com and was happy to find out it can be rooted indeed!
Why root Galaxy Tab 10.1 Android Tablet?
People always ask me, “why do you have to root your Galaxy Tab 10.1?”
Well, simply, you can do more with a rooted Galaxy Tab 10.1 such as installing 3rd party programs or being able to run Ubuntu Linux on top of it. There’s also apps like ScreenCapture app which can only run properly with a rooted tablet.
Basically, “rooting” an Android tablet device gives you super-user access to your Tab 10.1. Now, for those who don’t care for all that extra jazz, you don’t need root. But for those of us tinkerers who need to overclock our Galaxy Tab into 2Ghz territory, you can root your Tab 10.1.
How to Root Your Galaxy Tab 10.1!
Before we begin, these instructions are for “retail” versions of Galaxy Tab 10.1, which come with a locked bootloader. If you bought your Tab 10.1 from BestBuy or Amazon, a U.S. retailer, these instructions should work for you. I am not sure if it works on the Tab 10.1v (UK version) so that’s up to you to find out.
Also, my Galaxy Tab 10.1 shipped with Android 3.1 so if these instructions still might work later on with Android 3.2 but that’s up to you to find out.
The steps are a bit complicated as you have to “unroot” your Galaxy Tab 10.1 back to Android 3.0.1, then install root/SU files, ClockworkMod Recovery, then revert back to Android 3.1 with another install of root/SU. But in the end, you will end up with a stable rooted Android Honeycomb 3.1 Galaxy Tab 10.1 so follow these directions carefully.
Step 1 – How to Put Your Galaxy Tab 10.1 into Downloader Mode!
The first thing you will have to do is to put your Galaxy Tab 10.1 into downloader mode by powering off your device. Then hold down the Power button to start the device.
Next, while you are holding down the Power button, you should see the Samsung Galaxy Tab logo pop up, when you see this, immediately also hold down the Volume Down button. (Remember, the Volume Down button is the one closer to the Power button!)
Now you are holding down the two buttons, after couple seconds, you will see an Android guy icon pop up, when you see that, immediately let go of both of your fingers/buttons.
Now you have two choice, the Android icon with “Downloading” gets you into downloading mode (which we want right now) and the other gets you into the stock Recovery.
So, without hesitation, hit the Volume Up button (The button on the most right).
If you see a screen like below, you are done, that’s how you get into downloading mode.
Step 2 – Install Galaxy Tab 10.1 drivers!
First, these instructions are for Windows systems. For Windows, you need to install Galaxy Tab 10.1 drivers so you can flash the Android 3.0.1 using Odin.
You can download Galaxy Tab 10.1 Drivers here and install them simply by running the EXE program.
Next, connect the USB cable from your Galaxy Tab to your computer.
Step 3 – Download Tabroot.zip and unzip/uncompress!
I’ve made it simpler for you by putting all the files you need for rooting your Tab 10.1 in one zip file. Simply download the Tabroot.zip and unzip/uncompress using your favorite program.
When you unzip the zip file, you should get a folder called “tabroot”. Open it, and run the Odin program as shown below:
Step 4 – Run Odin to flash Tab 10.1 back to Android 3.0.1
When the Odin program opens up and you see “0:[COM4]” or something similar with yellow highlight, that means your computer is connected to your Galaxy Tab 10.1.
If not, you will have to make sure the drivers are installed correctly, go back to Step 2.
Next, hit the PDA button and choose the “PDA_SIGNED_P7105.tar.md5” file inside the tabroot folder.
Next, click “Start” and your Tab 10.1 will be reverting back to Android 3.0.1.
This should take about 5 minutes, below is what your Tab 10.1 should look like now, showing the progress download bar moving.
When it’s all done, your Tab 10.1 should have rebooted by itself like shown here:
And Odin should show “complete” as shown here:
You can verify that you are now reverted back to Android 3.0.1 by going to Settings->About tablet. You WILL get lots of “force-close”, do not worry as we are not done yet.
Step 5 – Install stable Root/SU!
Next, we are going to connect the Tab 10.1 as a disk drive, copy over our root/SU zip file so we can install stable, working root/SU on the Tab 10.1.
First, make sure your Tab 10.1 is NOT in USB Debugging Mode by going to Setup->Applications->Development and make sure USB Debugging is checked OFF.
Next, connect the USB cable from your Tab 10.1 to your computer. Your Tab 10.1 should show that it’s in Kies mode and you should be able to access the internal storage drive of your Tab 10.1 on your computer.
Simply copy over the Samsung_Galaxy_Tab_10.1_root.zip file from the tabroot folder to the root folder of your Tab 10.1.
Next, turn off your Galaxy Tab 10.1 then get into the Android icons (bootloader mode) like we did in Step 1 by holding down the Power Button, then holding down the Volume Down button when you see the Samsung Galaxy Tab logo, then letting both go when you see the Android icons.
Next, hit the Volume Down button (the one closer to Power button) and hit the Volume Up button to select the stock Recovery:
Next, use the Volume buttons to choose “apply update from /sdcard” and hit Power button.
Using the volume buttons, choose Samsung_Galaxy_Tab_10.1_root.zip and hit the Power button.
This will install the stable/working Root/SU files on your Tab 10.1.
Next, choose “reboot system now” and hit the Power button.
When your Tab 10.1 has rebooted, connect your USB cable from the Tab 10.1 to your computer again and copy over the hc-3.1_ota-full_sam_tab_10.1.zip file to the root folder of your Tab 10.1.
Next go to the Market and search for “ROM Manager”. Download and install the free version of ROM Manager app.
Open up ROM Manager app and choose “Flash ClockworkMod Recovery”. This installs a custom ClockworkMod recovery, which allows us to flash any type of zip file, so we can re-install the Android 3.1 and zip the Root/SU files.
And choose “Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1”.
SuperUser app should pop up, just hit “Allow”.
You should get “Succesfully flashed ClockworkMod recovery” message.
Next, hit “Reboot into Recovery” and “Okay”.
Once you are in ClockworkMod Recovery, choose “install zip from sdcard” (using Volume buttons) and hit the Power button.
Next, choose “choose zip from sdcard” and hit the Power button.
Now, choose the file hc-3.1_ota-full_sam_tab_10.1.zip and hit the Power button.
And choose “Yes – Install hc-3.1_ota-full_sam_tab_10.1.zip” and hit the Power button.
When that is done, we are going to zip the Root/SU files again by going to “choose zip from sdcard” and hit the Power button.
Choose the Samsung_Galaxy_Tab_10.1_root.zip file and hit the Power button, the hit the “Yes” button.
When that is done, you just need to reboot your Tab 10.1 and you should have a fully-rooted Android 3.1 Galaxy Tab 10.1.
Congratulations, you should pat yourself on the back now.
HUGE thanks to user Ritztnack at XDA as this guide is based on his guide!
This will install Android 3.1 official version OTA back to your Tab 10.1.
If this is the first time rooting an Android device, I highly suggest you to watch the video I took while I rooted the device here:Need Help? Follow/add me on Google+, Facebook, or Twitter!
Want to stay updated on latest Galaxy Tab Hacks news?
Sign up for our Galaxy Tab Hacks Newsletter here so you don't miss a single tip and get personal help via e-mail! First time to rooting and custom ROMs? Please see our Galaxy Tab 10.1 FAQ FIRST!
If you like this post, please CLICK HERE to subscribe to my YouTube channel, THANKS A TON BUD, I OWE YOU ONE!