All over the interwebs this morning there's scuttlebutt about some mysterious rootkit in the T-Mobile G2. Is the sky falling? Will this be the most locked down phone since the Motorola Droid X (which, by the way, has been "software" cracked)?
Let's discuss a little bit after the break.
Like most new desktop PCs, it appears that the G2 has a fail-safe partition that will restore the system files upon reboot if they are corrupted. If you root the G2 and start monkeying around, a reboot takes you back to square one, because you've corrupted the system. Yes, the G2 has already been rooted. It was rooted before it was officially released. The goal now it getting the root to work around the fail safe partition scheme and stick after a reboot. Of course, there was this BBQ in Texas over the weekend, so the people who usually work on this sort of thing haven't been able to yet -- all this is speculation. What I can tell you, is there is no rootkit in the G2. That's simply the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. This new fail-safe partitioning system will most likely fall, just like every other new partitioning system has, and there is no e-fuse and nothing appears to be encrypted. Your teeth won't fall out, little kittens won't be offed, and life (and hacking) shall go on.
And if it doesn't, and the G2 turns out to be locked town, you can take it back if you care about open hardware. I know I will. (But, again, I'm more than willing to put money on it totally accessible.)
But here is where things get interesting. The New America Foundation is the blog that "broke" this story -- even though the thread and folks they reference at XDA-Developers are in agreement that they're full of it. But hey, hits are hits right? I have to question their agenda, especially when I see that the chairman of their board is none other than Eric Schmidt. Yes, the same Eric Schmidt who happens to be CEO of Google. Is this his way to jab back at manufacturers and carriers that are bastardizing Android? Or just a coincidence? Either way, it's far more interesting than the rootkit nonsense. [New America Foundation]