Not everyone with a new Evo 4G is just enjoying the beast.  Some of us are hard at work applying everything we know about hacking Android to our new toy.  My eyes are getting blurry, and it's time for a break from the terminal so let's have a look at how you can cull some of the bloat on your Evo.

Revisiting the SDK

For now, there is no way work with the Evo unless you have the Android SDK installed.  That's not a bad thing at all, it just requires a little time and set up. Here's a quick walkthrough for Windows

  • Download the Sun Java JRE package HERE.  Be sure to choose the correct version for your platform.
  • Install it as you would any Windows application.
  • On the SD card that came with your Evo is a folder named HTC sync.  Copy it to your computer and install the app, again just like any other Windows program.
  • Download the Android SDK HERE.
  • Open the zip file, and drag the folder to your C: drive, or any place that's convienent for you.

Now reboot your computer, and while it's booting up turn on USB debugging on your Evo:
Menu>Settings>Applications>Development>check the USB debugging box

When everything is booted back up, plug your phone into a high speed USB port on your computer.  When Windows is finished locating the USB drivers for your phone (they were installed with HTC sync) open a command prompt inside the Android-SDK>tools folder, and type:

adb devices

you should see the serial number of your Evo listed.  That means you're done installing the SDK!

Rooting and using recovery

Phil has done all the legwork on this one.  Check it out (if you already haven't) HERE.  It seems harder that it really is, so don't worry.  You'll have to use the method Phil explains because we need to be in recovery to delete files from the system.

Using adb to delete system files

Warning! -- deleting the wrong files is a sure way to have an Evo that won't boot.  Pay close attention, and let someone else experiement.  Thankfully, KSmithInNY has already been hard at it in the forums.  This is a must read thread.

Before you even think about going forward, use the nandroid backup option in recovery.  this gives you something that works to go back to, and is the most important step in this entire tutorial!

After you've successfully ebtered custom recovery, in that command window you'll want to enter the following:

adb shell
mount /dev/block/mtdblock4 /system
cd /system/app

This will give you a list of all the system applications installed on your Evo.  To remove one, you use this syntax:

rm -f amazonmp3.apk

This would delete the Amazon MP3 store from your system.  Carefully delete the applications you no longer want installed.  Be very careful deleting applications that sync through the Accounts and Sync settings.  Some of these are required by the system, and removing them will lock your sync settings and very quickly kill your battery.  As mentioned, don't randomly delete something just because you won't use it :)

Cleaning up the cache

When you're finished deleting the applications, you want to make sure the aren't still indexed by the system.  Use the option in your custom recovery to wipe the dalvik-cache, then reboot your phone.  The first reboot will take a very long time, as it's rebuilding the database of installed programs. 

This whole operation looks and sounds much harder than it really is.  As long as you closely follow directions, you should have no issues.  If it all sounds like it's outside your comfort zone, wait for a custom ROM that does all this for you :)