What is root?


Okay, let’s not drag it out and get this root thing sorted out. Root is a user account in any UNIX-like system, this account is not simple and differs from all others in that it has unlimited rights to perform any operations in the system. Roughly speaking, a user with root rights can do almost anything with the device. Another thing that I want to draw your attention to is that root can be found not only in Android, a device, but also in any system that runs on the UNIX kernel. Thus, the phrase “root router” has a right to exist, since most modern routers use the UNIX kernel in their operating system. In general, root is not exclusive to Android smartphones. Now I suggest to find out what for it, in general, and whether a normal user needs it.

Except for tedious technical details, applications launched on behalf of a root user have unlimited rights to write and read any data in the system. Thus, these very applications get almost unlimited possibilities. On the one hand, this state of affairs gives a lot of opportunities for developers and they successfully implement them, creating great applications that help the simple user and make work with the system more convenient and easy. Let’s not go far for examples, the well-known Titanium Backup, which can download everything and everything on your smartphone, works only with root rights. Besides Titanium Backup, there is a whole cohort of useful applications for fine-tuning the device and everyone will find useful software for themselves. In addition to the software, root-rights allow the user to fine-tune his device. For example, you can replace the graphics in the GUI of your system and if you are tired of, say, any interface elements, icons or their color, they can be replaced with a special software or tweaks. In the same way, with root rights, it is possible to fine-tune the system settings. In this way you can adjust the maximum volume of speakers or headphones, often the manufacturer slightly limits the volume available to the user. In addition, the user with root rights has the option of manually calibrating the light sensors, changing the vibration intensity, or adjusting the maximum and, more importantly, minimum display brightness level. Also, the user with root rights has the option of fine-tuning jpeg compression so that we can change the quality of the resulting photos. In general, with root rights, you can customize almost anything. However, in this material I would like to focus not on the benefits that root rights can bring, but to talk about the damage that will inevitably be caused by not careful handling of this powerful tool.



The next paragraph will be useful for inexperienced users who have carelessly decided that they necessarily need root rights.
The downside to any rights, including root permissions, is responsibility, meaning that you must understand that by obtaining root permissions you take responsibility for all the troubles that can happen to you and your device, and that root can cause you much more trouble than good. I will now explain why, and for the sake of clarity, I will give you an example like this:
Let’s say that a dishonest developer includes a piece of code in his completely harmless application “flashlight” or “calendar” which will allow this application to read information in the wrong place (for example, your credit card data) and pass it into the hands of its creator. I don’t speak at all about applications that send sms to paid numbers, there are a lot of them. Yes, and this is by no means a complete list of malicious software, which with root rights gets unlimited possibilities. What is most interesting is that it is the most malicious software with such features that can theoretically interfere even with antivirus applications that often do not have root rights. Okay, well, I will not scare you with viruses, because the most terrible virus is 20-30 cm away from the device and most often holds it in your hand. Inexperience and ignorance of the user can often cause irreparable harm. So, with the help of root-rights you can kill the phone and turn it into a brick, how exactly to do it for obvious reasons I will not mention in this article. However, this possibility exists. And the above mentioned malicious software gets into the device most often at the will of the user with hacked toys or applications. With roo rights, malicious software can do terrible things. So before you get root rights, I recommend that you weigh the pros and cons and think carefully about whether you need those root rights.


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