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    Question Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    I am wanting to get a clear understanding of the structure of the Android phone - hardware, firmware and software - in particular, relating to the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini, Canadian edition SGH-I257M.

    I have been a computer bum since the mid-60s. I have extensive experience with machine and assembly languages, microcomputers and microcontrollers, programming "to the metal" [as we used to say], as well as C and high level languages, and a little UNIX knowledge via QNX from the century gone by. But i have been retired from all that for 15+ years and am entirely new to smartphones and Android.

    So i have some questions.

    But first, i have read and read and read. Too much hi-tech info the "get it" all at once. In particular i have found these threads specific to the SGH-I257M ...

    Galaxy S4 Mini Archive


    Root new S4 mini model SGH-I257M


    STOCK and ROOTED SGH-I257M


    and several others on rooting various specific-only versions of the S4 mini, CyanogenMod, flashing firmwares, etc. But no complete, tested process for rooting this specific model, or for installing CyanogenMod on it, etc.

    And a little history ...

    Back in the mid 60s a visiting professor at the University gave a talk entitled "Hardware, Software and Underwear". The title was of course, intentionally provocative. It was a bit mysterious to us at the time, but the idea was to encode low level software in hardware to make it run faster, among other reasons. The term underwear did not stick. Instead we have firmware, and in particular on microcomputers, the BIOS - Basic Input Output System.

    Question #1: with regard to Android, my guess is the the BIOS is the interface between the physical hardware and the Linux Kernel. Is this concept of the system structure correct? ...

    hardware <-> BIOS <-> Linux Kernel <-> Android System

    Question #2: I am not clear on the various categories of memory. The S4 mini has a SIM card, either 8 or 16 gb memory [mine has 16], and may optionally have up to an additional 64 gb memory via a microSD card installed by the owner. Is the BIOS on a separate chip like in microcomputers? Any other memory types? [I have a feeling that i am missing something].

    Question #3: Which physical memory contains each of the BIOS, the Linux Kernel and the Android system?

    Question #4: I am thinking that CyanogenMod is a replacement for what i have labelled Android System in my simple structure diagram in question #1 above. Is this correct?

    Question #5: The idea of rooting the phone is clear to me. I know what is the root directory on a computer hard drive and that the rooting process gives the user access to both that directory and permissions to do anything [delete, rename, replace, install, uninstall, whatever]. And that doing this voids the warranty.

    When spring/summer comes along [and they will, even in this cold and frozen Canada!] i expect to be off on my motorcycle [vintage IronHead] for extended periods. I will want to do whatever to extend the battery life of my phone. So i am anticipating rooting the phone by then and perhaps installing CyanogenMod. I have not yet seen a clear process for rooting for the Canadian S4 mini SGH-I257M including making appropriate backups of the system software, or for installing CyanogenMod, but i am looking. Any pointers to this i would appreciate.

    Question #5: Any books on this topic of Android system structure, especially wrt Samsung smart phones? I know, books are so last century; so maybe a website, forum thread, or whatever.

    TIA! More ?s later.

    Mick
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  2. #2  
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    Quote Originally Posted by mdawdy View Post
    I am wanting to get a clear understanding of the structure of the Android phone - hardware, firmware and software - in particular, relating to the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini, Canadian edition SGH-I257M.

    I have been a computer bum since the mid-60s. I have extensive experience with machine and assembly languages, microcomputers and microcontrollers, programming "to the metal" [as we used to say], as well as C and high level languages, and a little UNIX knowledge via QNX from the century gone by. But i have been retired from all that for 15+ years and am entirely new to smartphones and Android.

    So i have some questions.

    But first, i have read and read and read. Too much hi-tech info the "get it" all at once. In particular i have found these threads specific to the SGH-I257M ...

    Galaxy S4 Mini Archive


    Root new S4 mini model SGH-I257M


    STOCK and ROOTED SGH-I257M


    and several others on rooting various specific-only versions of the S4 mini, CyanogenMod, flashing firmwares, etc. But no complete, tested process for rooting this specific model, or for installing CyanogenMod on it, etc.

    And a little history ...

    Back in the mid 60s a visiting professor at the University gave a talk entitled "Hardware, Software and Underwear". The title was of course, intentionally provocative. It was a bit mysterious to us at the time, but the idea was to encode low level software in hardware to make it run faster, among other reasons. The term underwear did not stick. Instead we have firmware, and in particular on microcomputers, the BIOS - Basic Input Output System.

    Question #1: with regard to Android, my guess is the the BIOS is the interface between the physical hardware and the Linux Kernel. Is this concept of the system structure correct? ...

    hardware BIOS Linux Kernel Android System

    Question #2: I am not clear on the various categories of memory. The S4 mini has a SIM card, either 8 or 16 gb memory [mine has 16], and may optionally have up to an additional 64 gb memory via a microSD card installed by the owner. Is the BIOS on a separate chip like in microcomputers? Any other memory types? [I have a feeling that i am missing something].

    Question #3: Which physical memory contains each of the BIOS, the Linux Kernel and the Android system?

    Question #4: I am thinking that CyanogenMod is a replacement for what i have labelled Android System in my simple structure diagram in question #1 above. Is this correct?

    Question #5: The idea of rooting the phone is clear to me. I know what is the root directory on a computer hard drive and that the rooting process gives the user access to both that directory and permissions to do anything [delete, rename, replace, install, uninstall, whatever]. And that doing this voids the warranty.

    When spring/summer comes along [and they will, even in this cold and frozen Canada!] i expect to be off on my motorcycle [vintage IronHead] for extended periods. I will want to do whatever to extend the battery life of my phone. So i am anticipating rooting the phone by then and perhaps installing CyanogenMod. I have not yet seen a clear process for rooting for the Canadian S4 mini SGH-I257M including making appropriate backups of the system software, or for installing CyanogenMod, but i am looking. Any pointers to this i would appreciate.

    Question #5: Any books on this topic of Android system structure, especially wrt Samsung smart phones? I know, books are so last century; so maybe a website, forum thread, or whatever.

    TIA! More ?s later.

    Mick
    Welcome to Android Central
    I'm not as familiar with PC's and Linux as you or a few others around here, but I'll try my best to answer.
    1) The boot loader on Android is probably what comes closest to the BIOS. You need to unlock it (if it isn't already) before flashing any custom recoveries, ROMs, or even rooting the phone
    2) The SIM card is not what stores data, the internal storage does that. SIM cards are what allows you to get service on your phone, and while it can store contacts, it doesn't do much else.
    Everything having to do with the OS is stored on the internal storage into separate system partitions.
    Other memory types would be the SD card and RAM
    3) That would be the internal storage
    4) CyanogenMod is a custom ROM, it is based off of the stock Android OS. It will replace whatever came with the phone, but it is still the same OS (Android)
    5) xda-developers.com has a lot of in depth info on the Android OS and having more than 10 posts on the site will allow you to enter the developers threads of the forums.
    Edit: Like I said, I may not be the best person to ask, so hopefully someone else can chime in and correct me if I'm wrong

    Sent from my XT1056 using the Android Central App
    Everything in this post is 100% accurate...I think

    R.I.P. Motorola...and what could have been the best smartphone line ever
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  3. #3  
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    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Quote Originally Posted by mdawdy View Post
    I am wanting to get a clear understanding of the structure of the Android phone - hardware, firmware and software - in particular, relating to the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini, Canadian edition SGH-I257M.

    Question #1: with regard to Android, my guess is the the BIOS is the interface between the physical hardware and the Linux Kernel. Is this concept of the system structure correct? ...

    hardware <-> BIOS <-> Linux Kernel <-> Android System

    Question #2: I am not clear on the various categories of memory. The S4 mini has a SIM card, either 8 or 16 gb memory [mine has 16], and may optionally have up to an additional 64 gb memory via a microSD card installed by the owner. Is the BIOS on a separate chip like in microcomputers? Any other memory types? [I have a feeling that i am missing something].

    Question #3: Which physical memory contains each of the BIOS, the Linux Kernel and the Android system?

    Question #4: I am thinking that CyanogenMod is a replacement for what i have labelled Android System in my simple structure diagram in question #1 above. Is this correct?

    Question #5: The idea of rooting the phone is clear to me. I know what is the root directory on a computer hard drive and that the rooting process gives the user access to both that directory and permissions to do anything [delete, rename, replace, install, uninstall, whatever]. And that doing this voids the warranty.

    When spring/summer comes along [and they will, even in this cold and frozen Canada!] i expect to be off on my motorcycle [vintage IronHead] for extended periods. I will want to do whatever to extend the battery life of my phone. So i am anticipating rooting the phone by then and perhaps installing CyanogenMod. I have not yet seen a clear process for rooting for the Canadian S4 mini SGH-I257M including making appropriate backups of the system software, or for installing CyanogenMod, but i am looking. Any pointers to this i would appreciate.

    Question #5: Any books on this topic of Android system structure, especially wrt Samsung smart phones? I know, books are so last century; so maybe a website, forum thread, or whatever.

    TIA! More ?s later.

    Mick
    These are all answered to the best of knowledge and understanding based on what I've already read and been told by people that do know.

    Question 1) Hardware <-> Bootloader <-> Kernel (Linux) <-> Android

    Question 2) The SIM card is the basic network interface for the device. I used to remember what was stored on it, but at the moment it's not coming to me. You also have ROM/RAM and storage. ROM is not what it's referred to in the community. It's a type of storage that stores certain commands (bootloader) that are usually not touched by anything you do (there are exceptions to this though). RAM is RAM (I'm assuming you're familiar with it). Storage is actually what you're referring to as memory (at least as we reference it). 8 or 16gb of storage, vs 1-2gb of RAM (RAM = memory). The SD card is separate, and expands on the storage. It's not as versatile and isn't entirely supported by Android as an extension of the System. It can be used for Media storage and certain parts of apps that are allowed to be moved over (dependent on various factors as to what can and can't be moved).

    Question 3) I'm not entirely sure. It could be stored on a separate physical chip or just be a permanent partition on the already built in NAND used for storage (this would explain some of the difference in reported storage levels vs what's advertised, since adding up various areas of System never equals what shows in Settings > Storage).

    Question 4) At a basic level yes. It's far more than that, though. It completely replaces your current OS. It flashed a new kernel and completely overwrites everything that's on there currently.

    Question 5 (2) ) Not that I'm aware of. Just lots of Google searches and clicking links.


    It should also be noted that installing a custom ROM (it's really a custom OS, not ROM) like Cyanogen might actually hurt your battery life. Companies like Samsung/HTC/LG put a lot of time and effort into maximizing battery life and efficiency in their OS. Replacing that with something not designed for the specific device might have a negative effect on battery life. Of course, it could be better. It's highly dependent on a lot of things, most of which revolve around the amount of dev community support a specific device has. Historically Nexus devices have a high amount of support and a lot of custom OS's give significant improvements in one area or another.

    Another option would be to root and use apps like Greenify to help with battery life (do your research, though, I personally don't like them).
    Kevin F.I.M.T.K. O'Quinn Esq.
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  4. Thread Author  Thread Author    #4  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    OK, these answers have been very helpful. So as i understand things now, ...

    • The BootLoader is in a rewriteable ROM, an actual physical chip
    • The 1.5 gb RAM is what i have been missing. This is where currently running programs are stored, temporarily, until both they are no longer running and the system needs the RAM to run another process
    • The 16 gb storage is equivalent to the hard drive on a PC. All software - Android system and apps - are stored here, and are loaded into the RAM when they need to run. The storage is divided into partitions.
    • I can see what programs are currently in RAM by Settings | more | app manager | running
    • I can see what programs are in storage by Settings | more | storage

    As mentioned, the common use of the word ROM does not refer to an actual physical ROM chip or to software that might be loaded into one. Rather is is a generally accepted but misused term for replacing the whole [or perhaps part of the] operating system.

    So now i have two more questions/thoughts ...
    1. What about these partitions? Are these really partitions like on a PC hard drive? or are these really sub-directories of the root? There would be certain partitions, standard with the Android setup, each with a specific purpose. It would be helpful to know at least a few of these.
    2. In my running apps list i see S Voice. Hhmmmm, i thought i deleted this app. I know i did. I do not need it to be in there, taking up space and CPU cycles. I expect that it is OK to Stop it, and that it will re-start itself next time i power off/up. I'll have to go down that list and see what else i can "put a stop to".

    TIA. More ?s later.

    Mick
  5. #5  
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    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Quote Originally Posted by mdawdy View Post
    OK, these answers have been very helpful. So as i understand things now, ...

    • The BootLoader is in a rewriteable ROM, an actual physical chip
    • The 1.5 gb RAM is what i have been missing. This is where currently running programs are stored, temporarily, until both they are no longer running and the system needs the RAM to run another process
    • The 16 gb storage is equivalent to the hard drive on a PC. All software - Android system and apps - are stored here, and are loaded into the RAM when they need to run. The storage is divided into partitions.
    • I can see what programs are currently in RAM by Settings | more | app manager | running
    • I can see what programs are in storage by Settings | more | storage

    As mentioned, the common use of the word ROM does not refer to an actual physical ROM chip or to software that might be loaded into one. Rather is is a generally accepted but misused term for replacing the whole [or perhaps part of the] operating system.

    So now i have two more questions/thoughts ...
    1. What about these partitions? Are these really partitions like on a PC hard drive? or are these really sub-directories of the root? There would be certain partitions, standard with the Android setup, each with a specific purpose. It would be helpful to know at least a few of these.
    2. In my running apps list i see S Voice. Hhmmmm, i thought i deleted this app. I know i did. I do not need it to be in there, taking up space and CPU cycles. I expect that it is OK to Stop it, and that it will re-start itself next time i power off/up. I'll have to go down that list and see what else i can "put a stop to".

    TIA. More ?s later.

    Mick
    1) Found a helpful explanation of the partitions here:
    2) You'd need root access and an app like Titanium backup pro or Greenify to completely remove or freeze those apps. Apps like these are what is referred to as bloatware. Since they are "essential" to system performance, some should not be deleted. If you were to flash a custom ROM, you'd be getting rid of the apps and they would no longer run in the background, but they would still take up space in the internal storage

    Sent from my XT1056 using the Android Central App
    Everything in this post is 100% accurate...I think

    R.I.P. Motorola...and what could have been the best smartphone line ever
  6. Thread Author  Thread Author    #6  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Awesome! Thank you.

    Looks like the "partitions" are "directories", using the old MS-DOS and UNIX terminology. So once rooted, ...
    cd / goes the the root directory, or
    cd /recovery goes to the recovery directory

    and ...
    ls
    would list the contents of whatever is the current directory.

    OK, thanx again,

    Mick
  7. #7  
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    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Quote Originally Posted by mdawdy View Post
    Awesome! Thank you.

    Looks like the "partitions" are "directories", using the old MS-DOS and UNIX terminology. So once rooted, ...
    cd / goes the the root directory, or
    cd /recovery goes to the recovery directory

    and ...
    ls
    would list the contents of whatever is the current directory.

    OK, thanx again,

    Mick
    If you have a background in Linux and commands used there you should quickly catch on with what's going on with Android, ADB, and command lines in general. If this is something you are interested in I would start reading up on ADB (Android Debug Bridge).

    I'm unfamiliar with MS-DOS and UNIX so I can't say for sure how parallel they are.
    Kevin F.I.M.T.K. O'Quinn Esq.
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  8. #8  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Quote Originally Posted by mdawdy View Post
    ... 2. In my running apps list i see S Voice. Hhmmmm, i thought i deleted this app. I know i did. I do not need it to be in there, taking up space and CPU cycles. I expect that it is OK to Stop it, and that it will re-start itself next time i power off/up.
    Mick
    S Voice is 1 of the 41 apps that I have turn'd off, with no apparent side effect. And it has stay'd off. But then, I do not use voice input for Google searching. My model GT-I9190 uses the term Turned Off, versus your SGH-1257M which apparently uses the term Stop. Anyway, my S4 Mini's overnight battery drain has been 2% for 8 hours, 3% for 12 hours. That's with everything off.

    BTW does your motorcycle have a 12 volt battery and charging system? If so, you could use it for your phone by rigging a car charger into it. You could do away with the bulky cigarette lighter plug and wire it directly, or install a cig lighter socket to plug the charger into - as well as for other possibilities, hopefully not to support a nicotine habbit.

    Edit: It seems that 'Stop' stops the app (or service) for now, but allows it to be call'd up again later; while 'Turn Off' stops the app and keeps it stop'd for good (until *you* turn it on).
    Last edited by Wm7Long; 02-17-2014 at 12:25 PM. Reason: Stop vs. Turning Off
  9. #9  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    I don`t want to be superficial, but did you test an Android based gadget to see how it works? It`s hard to explain it, you must have it in your hands and start analyzing what`s good and what`s wrong about current smartphones
  10. Thread Author  Thread Author    #10  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Quote Originally Posted by Wm7Long View Post
    S Voice is 1 of the 41 apps that I have turn'd off, with no apparent side effect. And it has stay'd off. But then, I do not use voice input for Google searching. My model GT-I9190 uses the term Turned Off, versus your SGH-1257M which apparently uses the term Stop ....
    In the app manager of my SGH-I257M the options are uninstall, disable and stop, depending on the app and where i am in the system. Uninstalled stuff can be re-installed from the store, disabled can be re-enabled and stopped will be re-started magically by Android [useless to Stop a process unless you know it is temporary and you have a specific purpose]. The disabled are listed under Settings | more | app manager | All at the very end of the list, and can be re-enabled from there.

    I have hard wired my GPS into the bike electrical system. Of course the phone has a different connector. I'll have to fiddle with it to see how i can do it neatly.

    Do you have a list of the 41 Apps?

    Mick
  11. #11  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Quote Originally Posted by mdawdy View Post
    Do you have a list of the 41 Apps?
    I do now. These are shown as 'Turned off' in my GT-I9190, which apparently is the same as 'Disabled' would be in your SGH-I257M:
    Adapt Sound - 80.00 KB
    BlurbCheckout - 280 KB
    Briefing - 4.00 KB
    ChatON - 5.29 MB
    Downloads - 4.00 KB
    Dropbox - 1.73 MB
    Dropbox00BE - 16.00 KB
    Flipboard - 1.62 MB
    Google Calendar Sync - 463 KB
    Google Play Movies & TV - 2.41 MB
    Google Text-to-speech Engine - 1.62 MB
    Google+ - 6.03MB
    Group Play - 1.08 MB
    Hangouts - 5.42 MB
    Messaging - 4.00 KB
    My Files - 4.00 KB
    POLARIS Office Viewer 5 - 32.00 KB
    S Memo - 4.00KB
    S Note Provider - 4.00 KB
    S Planner widget - 4.00 KB
    S Voice - 4.89 MB
    Samsung account - 0.98 MB
    Samsung Apps - 2.61 MB
    Samsung Apps Widget - 164 KB
    Samsung Backup Provider - 132 KB
    Samsung Books - 10.14 MB
    Samsung Calendar SyncAdapt.. - 24.00 KB
    Samsung Cloud Data Relay - 128 KB
    Samsung Contact SyncAdapter - 24.00 KB
    Samsung Link - 444 KB
    Samsung Push Service - 1.36 MB
    Samsung SBrowser Bookmark.. - 24.00 MB
    Samsung SBrowser Tab SyncA.. - 28.00 KB
    Samsung SNote SyncAdapter - 24.00
    Samsung Syncadapters - 720 KB
    Samsung WatchON - 2.71 MB
    SNS - 1.28 MB
    TripAdvisor - 1.80 MB
    Weather Widget - 4.00 KB
    Yahoo! Finance - 4.00 KB
    Yahoo! News - 4.00 KB

    I use my S4 Mini sort of like a tablet, via Wifi only, no voice or network data connection at this time. Got it new on eBay, factory unlock'd, and have discover'd it's firmware to be that which is supposed to be for Trinidad/Tobago or possibly Panama. When new, it was all in Spanish! (Was easy to fix, as language was an early step in original set-up.) Since, I have root'd it and have Clockwork Mod back-up/recovery working nicely, but was not able to flash the stable CM ROM. So that's why I've gone ahead with turning off bloatwares.
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    mdawdy 
  12. Thread Author  Thread Author    #12  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Looks like we are on the same path. I'll put an asterisk beside each one that i have already disabled in my SGH-I257M, and follow with a list of additional apps that i have disabled - with no problems. Then i will check out the others you have listed and report back ...
    Quote Originally Posted by Wm7Long View Post
    ...
    Adapt Sound - 80.00 KB
    * BlurbCheckout - 280 KB
    Briefing - 4.00 KB
    * ChatON - 5.29 MB
    Downloads - 4.00 KB
    * Dropbox - 1.73 MB
    * Dropbox00BE - 16.00 KB
    * Flipboard - 1.62 MB
    Google Calendar Sync - 463 KB
    Google Play Movies & TV - 2.41 MB
    * Google Text-to-speech Engine - 1.62 MB
    * Google+ - 6.03MB
    Group Play - 1.08 MB
    * Hangouts - 5.42 MB
    Messaging - 4.00 KB
    My Files - 4.00 KB
    POLARIS Office Viewer 5 - 32.00 KB
    S Memo - 4.00KB
    S Note Provider - 4.00 KB
    S Planner widget - 4.00 KB
    * S Voice - 4.89 MB
    Samsung account - 0.98 MB
    Samsung Apps - 2.61 MB
    Samsung Apps Widget - 164 KB
    Samsung Backup Provider - 132 KB
    * Samsung Books - 10.14 MB
    Samsung Calendar SyncAdapt.. - 24.00 KB
    Samsung Cloud Data Relay - 128 KB
    Samsung Contact SyncAdapter - 24.00 KB
    * Samsung Link - 444 KB
    Samsung Push Service - 1.36 MB
    Samsung SBrowser Bookmark.. - 24.00 MB
    Samsung SBrowser Tab SyncA.. - 28.00 KB
    Samsung SNote SyncAdapter - 24.00
    Samsung Syncadapters - 720 KB
    * Samsung WatchON - 2.71 MB
    SNS - 1.28 MB
    * TripAdvisor - 1.80 MB
    Weather Widget - 4.00 KB
    * Yahoo! Finance - 4.00 KB
    * Yahoo! News - 4.00 KB ...
    100%HDGames
    EpsonPrintService
    Gmail
    GooglePlayBooks
    GooglePlayGames
    GooglePlayMagazines
    GooglePlayMovies
    GooglePlayMusic
    HPPrintService
    PageBuddyNotiSvc
    PicasaUploader
    S Translator
    SamsungPrintService
    StoryAlbum
    StoryAlbumWidget

    I did not keep track but i did uninstall some apps. They are gone so i cannot produce a list. Possibly includes some of what is on your list.

    I'll post again in the next few days. Hope this helps others.
  13. #13  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Thanks for your additional list Mick, you've reminded me that I had intended to turn off some apps that seem'd might become useful, but in fact have not. So I've now turn'd off:

    Picasa Uploader - 528 KB
    S Translator - 4.00 KB
    Story Album - 24.00 KB
    Story Album Widget - 4.00 KB

    And while in there, I found and turn'd off something call'd:

    Phase beam - 4.00 KB

    This brings my S4 Mini to now have 46 apps turn'd off. On the other hand, some of those you have disabled (AKA: Turned off) are useful to me:

    (1) Gmail - I use this for a group I'm in.
    (2) Google Play Books - Found it helpful for an ebook I purchased.
    (3) PageBuddyNotiSvc - When I had this turn'd off, no notifications were coming up. Most are not very important, but I like being alert'd to them anyway. So I turn'd it back on.

    The rest of the apps on your additional list apparently were never on my device. And one last point, re UNinstalling. As far as I can tell, the only apps Android will let me uninstall are those that I install'd myself.
  14. Thread Author  Thread Author    #14  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    When i first uninstalled some things i was new to this whole smartphone thing. I just got the phone in early December. So i am not sure what i uninstalled. I thought at the time that i uninstalled some things that i had not downloaded. But probably not.

    I will re-enable PageBuddyNotiSvc.

    Do i need the SamsungPushService to receive updates from Samsung? I do not what to miss KitKat 4.4!

    What is SNS? A Google search did not turn up much. Looks to be used by Google+, Google Talk, and ChatON, none of which i need.

    I am going to keep Messaging as i use it.

    I may occasionally use MyFiles, SamsungAccount, and SamsungApps so i'll keep these for now. Later i may disable them - can always re-enable if i need them.

    I am keeping S Planner because i use it, but i'll disable S PlannerWidget [It may not allow this? I think if i disable a widget it also disables the app. I'll find out i guess. It is that way with downloaded apps, i think?].

    These others from your list i will disable and see what happens ...

    Adapt Sound - 80.00 KB
    Briefing - 4.00 KB
    Downloads - 4.00 KB
    Google Calendar Sync - 463 KB
    Group Play - 1.08 MB
    POLARIS Office Viewer 5 - 32.00 KB
    S Memo - 4.00KB
    S Note Provider - 4.00 KB
    S Planner widget - 4.00 KB
    Samsung Apps Widget - 164 KB
    Samsung Backup Provider - 132 KB
    Samsung Calendar SyncAdapt.. - 24.00 KB
    Samsung Cloud Data Relay - 128 KB
    Samsung Contact SyncAdapter - 24.00 KB
    Samsung SBrowser Bookmark.. - 24.00 MB
    Samsung SBrowser Tab SyncA.. - 28.00 KB
    Samsung SNote SyncAdapter - 24.00
    Samsung Syncadapters - 720 KB
    SNS - 1.28 MB
    Weather Widget - 4.00 KB

    Thank you for this stuff,

    Mick
  15. Thread Author  Thread Author    #15  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    OK, so i disabled the apps listed at the end of my previous post. Then when i tried to make a call it displayed that it was ringing but i could hear no ringing buzz-tone. I powered the phone off then on again and that fixed it.

    Actually the process was - think the problem is AdaptSound, re-enable it, still no sound, power-off-on, then it worked, then disabled AdaptSound again, still works. So apparently has not to do with AdaptSound, just needed power off/on. Apparently. Be interesting to know why.

    I am glad i have a friend who is not home so i could make a bunch of calls without disturbing anyone.

    I do not have an app called Google Play but instead i have Google Play Services and Google Play Store.

    I noticed that the SNS has a FaceBook F symbol, confirming that i do not want it.

    Each time i disabled an app i cleared all of its data and cache.

    There are many many more apps listed under Settings | More | App Manager | All that i would like to explore. However, there does not appear to be a website where all of these are listed with a technical description of what they do. Unlike, for example, MS Windows where every system DLL, EXE, etc is thoroughly analyzed and listed on many sites [usually, unfortunately, overshadowed by shallow attempts to delude you into downloading some virus bearing stupid software]. Would be nice to have such a site for Android [minus the stupid part].

    More later, ...

    Mick
  16. #16  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Can't blame you for keeping My Files. It was useful to me at 1st, until obtaining root access and installing the wonderful file manager Total Commander, which I'd been using for years on my Windows Mobile devices. I really like it's virtual 2-screen mode, in which you can open a local folder on one screen and a local or remote (e.g. FTP) folder on the other.

    I had guess'd Samsung Push Service is for push email, which I don't use. But even if it is needed for updates, I'm still keeping it off. Nothing about Kit Kat 4.4 interests me. In fact the 3 things Samsung listed as it's attractive features sound to me like 3 strikes against KK. Plus a lot of developers and others who use custom ROMs are having troubles due to Knox in 4.4 and 4.3 too.

    And finally, the mysterious SNS has an icon that provides a clue about what it's for. (See screenshot, below.) The only facebooking I do is via Web browser, my fave being Firefox.

    Android System Structure, SGH-I257M-turndoff.png

    Edit: It appears you saw the 'f' icon about the same time as when I was capturing the screenie so you could see the f.
    Last edited by Wm7Long; 02-19-2014 at 05:40 PM.
  17. Thread Author  Thread Author    #17  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    I found this ...
    The Samsung push service provides the notification service only for Samsung services (ChatON, Samsung Apps, AllsharePlay, Samsung Wallet, etc.) on Samsung devices.
    so i am disabling the SamsungPushService.

    Yes, one of the last things i noticed before posting was that particular symbol next to the SNS. So it is now gone also.

    I am interested in KK 4.4 for the presumed fix of the bug that causes excessive battery drain.

    I am not rooted yet. I am somewhat chicken of the process as it seems that many users run into tech problems when they try it; and i still have 10 months of warranty left. I have enough tech background that i can follow a complex procedure, but i have not yet seen one specific to SGH-I257M. I would like to find such, and also a corresponding, reliable unroot so that i could return to stock if needed. Then i will try it; and perhaps get to CyanogenMod after.

    Mick
    Thanked by:
  18. #18  
    UJ95x's Avatar

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    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Quote Originally Posted by mdawdy View Post
    I found this ...
    The Samsung push service provides the notification service only for Samsung services (ChatON, Samsung Apps, AllsharePlay, Samsung Wallet, etc.) on Samsung devices.
    so i am disabling the SamsungPushService.

    Yes, one of the last things i noticed before posting was that particular symbol next to the SNS. So it is now gone also.

    I am interested in KK 4.4 for the presumed fix of the bug that causes excessive battery drain.

    I am not rooted yet. I am somewhat chicken of the process as it seems that many users run into tech problems when they try it; and i still have 10 months of warranty left. I have enough tech background that i can follow a complex procedure, but i have not yet seen one specific to SGH-I257M. I would like to find such, and also a corresponding, reliable unroot so that i could return to stock if needed. Then i will try it; and perhaps get to CyanogenMod after.

    Mick
    Found a root method for your model number, but I'm not sure if it still works on the latest update to the OS.

    Last post

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 running SlimKat 4.4.2
    Everything in this post is 100% accurate...I think

    R.I.P. Motorola...and what could have been the best smartphone line ever
  19. #19  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    No problem here with battery drain running JB 4.2.2, not anymore that is. It took an awfully long time to finally get over all the many battery drain issues that were sucking anywhere from ~20% to a little over 30% in just a few hours. Bought the device late in September 2013. Struggled with excess drain for months; thinking it was solved at some points, only to wake up the next morning and find troubles had struck again! The bouts of trouble often came shortly after visiting Google's Play Store to hunt for an app that might provide a desired result. The last one is the only one I believe to have understood to any degree. It turn'd out to be involved with Nearby Services running for no good reason. Discover'd several of my apps call up Nearby Services. By making sure each of those apps is properly exit'd, I found that Nearby Services would also close.

    It is wise of you to be very cautious about rooting. There are too many ways for things to go fowl. Recommend finding a dependable way to save a clone, or at the very least, a back-up image of your entire system before attempting to gain root access. When my tries at flashing CyanogenMod all ended up getting stuck at an interesting but never ending animated CM splash, it sure was a relief to have already gotten ClockworkMod Recovery install'd, tested, and working.
  20. #20  
    UJ95x's Avatar

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    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Quote Originally Posted by Wm7Long View Post
    No problem here with battery drain running JB 4.2.2, not anymore that is. It took an awfully long time to finally get over all the many battery drain issues that were sucking anywhere from ~20% to a little over 30% in just a few hours. Bought the device late in September 2013. Struggled with excess drain for months; thinking it was solved at some points, only to wake up the next morning and find troubles had struck again! The bouts of trouble often came shortly after visiting Google's Play Store to hunt for an app that might provide a desired result. The last one is the only one I believe to have understood to any degree. It turn'd out to be involved with Nearby Services running for no good reason. Discover'd several of my apps call up Nearby Services. By making sure each of those apps is properly exit'd, I found that Nearby Services would also close.

    It is wise of you to be very cautious about rooting. There are too many ways for things to go fowl. Recommend finding a dependable way to save a clone, or at the very least, a back-up image of your entire system before attempting to gain root access. When my tries at flashing CyanogenMod all ended up getting stuck at an interesting but never ending animated CM splash, it sure was a relief to have already gotten ClockworkMod Recovery install'd, tested, and working.
    I had to root before getting a custom recovery

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 running SlimKat 4.4.2
    Everything in this post is 100% accurate...I think

    R.I.P. Motorola...and what could have been the best smartphone line ever
    Wm7Long likes this.
  21. Thread Author  Thread Author    #21  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Quote Originally Posted by UJ95x View Post
    Found a root method for your model number, but I'm not sure if it still works on the latest update to the OS.

    Last post ...
    Quote Originally Posted by Wm7Long View Post
    No problem here with battery drain running JB 4.2.2, not anymore that is. ... It turn'd out to be involved with Nearby Services running for no good reason ... It is wise of you to be very cautious about rooting. There are too many ways for things to go fowl ...
    Thanx UJ95x. I am already aware of that thread. I would need to do a lot of work to detail the actual list of softwares to download, which to the PC and which to the phone, what specific procedures to follow with each, in what sequence etc. I may do this and end with a good detail list that would be of use to others like myself who are new to rooting etc. But not just now.

    So in the meantime i am following Wm7Long's advice, and being very cautious. It seems that is rooting not a simple process with a pre-determined result.
  22. #22  
    UJ95x's Avatar

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    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Quote Originally Posted by mdawdy View Post
    Thanx UJ95x. I am already aware of that thread. I would need to do a lot of work to detail the actual list of softwares to download, which to the PC and which to the phone, what specific procedures to follow with each, in what sequence etc. I may do this and end with a good detail list that would be of use to others like myself who are new to rooting etc. But not just now.

    So in the meantime i am following Wm7Long's advice, and being very cautious. It seems that is rooting not a simple process with a pre-determined result.
    That's fine. Rooting isn't very hard if you follow the instructions and are somewhat familiar with the terminology. When I did it, it was a one click process.
    Let us know if you have any other questions

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 running SlimKat 4.4.2
    Everything in this post is 100% accurate...I think

    R.I.P. Motorola...and what could have been the best smartphone line ever
    Thanked by:
    mdawdy 
  23. Thread Author  Thread Author    #23  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    Here is a link to an album on my Picasaweb. It contains 39 images, of the list of All apps on my Samsung Galaxy S4 mini SGH-I257M, obtained with [Settings | More | Application manager | All]. I have had the device for 3 months so this is not the stock list, but it is not rooted. The last 8 pages show the Apps that i have already Disabled with [Settings | More | Application manager | All | tap name of app | Disable]. I will be going thru the list in these images and disabling as many more apps as i can ...


    This Disable option is semi-permanent. They stay disabled thru power off/on including battery remove/re-install. Each can be re-enabled by [Settings | More | Application manager | All | tap name of app | Enable]

    So far, in addition to those already Disabled, i am considering Disabling each of the following. If i am on the verge of a disaster with any of these please let me know. I'll post my results in this thread ...

    Basic Daydreams
    Best Face
    Bubbles
    CloudAgent
    CoolEuKor
    DroidSerifItalic
    Face Unlock
    Mobile Print
    Mobile Print Svc_CUPS
    Mobile Print Svc_CUPS_..
    RoseEUKor
    SamsungText-to-speach
    Syncmlds
    TalkBack
    Trim

    There may be more possibilities that i have missed. I will go thru the list again after i explore this list.

    TIA for any comments,

    Mick
  24. Thread Author  Thread Author    #24  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    I disabled the 15 apps listed in my previous post bringing the total number disabled to about 65. Following the procedure referenced above. No problems.
  25. #25  

    Default Re: Android System Structure, SGH-I257M

    That's funny and here I thought I was on the forums for Tiny Core.
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