Updating your HTC Wildfire from Android 2.2 (Froyo) to 2.3 (Gingerbread)

DISCLAIMER: I WILL ACCEPT NO RESPONSIBILITY WHATSOEVER IF YOUR WILDFIRE GETS BRICKED AS A RESULT OF YOU BEING A DAREDEVIL, OR SIMPLY BEING STUPID. ROOTING YOUR PHONE WILL VOID YOUR WARRANTY. I WOULD NOT RECOMMEND THIS PROCEDURE FOR THE FAINT OF HEART.

NOTE: This procedure will cause all your personal data on the phone such as contacts, messages etc to be lost. Data on the SD card will not be lost. I would suggest backing everything up before you start. There are some awesome tools on the Android Market such as Astro File Manager and SMS Backup and Restore which you can use to backup your applications and messages.

Thanks to the AWESOME people at Cyanogenmod, now you can have Android 2.3 Gingerbread on your HTC Wildfire! I also got some help from the Learn How To Hack blog, which was very informative.

Cyanogenmod incorporates a large amount of awesome tools and provides an authentic experience on your phone based on Gingerbread. I would recommend it to anyone who is tired of the dumb old HTC UI.

WARNING: HTC Sense will NOT work on your phone after you have installed Cyanogenmod. There is NO fix for this yet. (but on the other hand, who needs HTC Sense anyway? :P)

One of the sad things that happens to you is that if you upgrade your HTC Wildfire to Froyo (2.2), you can’t immediately install Cyanogenmod on it. So you need to go back to 2.1 first. Most documentation on this topic won’t tell you how to get back to 2.1.

DOWNLOADS SECTION

Before you start, make sure your phone is set to turn on Debugging mode when it’s connected to the computer. If you don’t know how to do that, I wouldn’t recommend continuing with this operation.

The first thing you need to do is to set your phone’s Security Flag to S-OFF. Doing this enables you to do a factory reset on the phone, and allows you to write to any partition. This is basically the first step towards rooting your phone. An easy way to get S-OFF is to use the Revolutionary tool which is built by Unrevoked and AlpaRev. Download the Revolutionary tool (it truly IS revolutionary), connect your phone on ‘Charge Only’ mode (you’ll have to have drivers installed and HTC Sync off if you’re on Windows) and run it. It’ll set your phone to S-OFF.

Download the USB Drivers for Windows. Make sure HTC Sync is disabled, turn off your phone. Boot it into HBOOT by holding down POWER BUTTON + DOWN VOLUME KEY. Your phone will boot in to the HBOOT interface (which is pretty much like a bootloader on Android). Connect your phone to the PC using the USB cable. The computer will search for drivers, at which point you should point out the drivers you downloaded earlier. They will install, and your phone will now be recognized by Windows as an ‘Android Bootloader interface’.

Now it’s time to go back to Android 2.1 Éclair. Download the RUU Android 2.1 Factory ROM for this, and run it with your phone connected. WARNING! At this point you will lose all your data such as contacts, messages and other personal data stored on the phone. Data on the SD card will not be harmed. Progress of installing Éclair on your phone will be shown both on the GUI interface on your PC and your phone itself. Soon it’ll be back to Éclair, but you won’t have to stare at that outdated desktop for long, because we’ll be moving on.

Now you’ll have to get the UnRevoked tool, which will help you to root your phone. PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS STEP WILL VOID YOUR PHONE’S WARRANTY. Simply download the tool, connect your phone and run it. It’ll set your phone to root.

The next step is to download Cyanogenmod 7 ROM for HTC Wildfire and Google Apps, which will get downloaded as ZIP files. Place these ZIP files on your SD card, and reboot the phone into HBOOT by holding down the POWER BUTTON + VOLUME DOWN BUTTON. In the HBOOT menu, use VOLUME DOWN to navigate through the options, and choose the ‘Recovery’ option using the POWER BUTTON. Your phone will go into ClockworkMod Recovery mode. Here, use the Volume buttons to navigate, but the TRACKBALL to select an option.

  1. Select Wipe data/Factory Reset. (you will get an ‘Are You Sure?’ page, just choose Wipe from the options)
  2. Select Wipe Cache Partition.
  3. Select Install ZIP from SD Card
  4. Choose the Cyanogenmod ZIP file you copied to the SD Card earlier and let it install.
  5. Select Install ZIP from SD Card again.
  6. Choose the Google Apps ZIP file you copied to the SD Card earlier and let it install as well.
  7. Reboot your phone. It’ll boot into Cyanogenmod!

Enjoy your new-found OS! 🙂