TUTORIAL: Downgrade Samsung Galaxy S5 from 5.0 to 4.4 KitKat

consv93

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Hi folks,

I got the 5.0 update for the Verizon Galaxy S5 (SM-G900V) and really dislike it. Does anyone know of a method to downgrade it to 4.4.4?

**UPDATE** I was able to successfully downgrade to 4.4.4. Here is a tutorial for those who may find this post and want to do the same. My S5 is the Verizon model; this should work on all Galaxy S5s. Do this at your own risk, preferably while your S5 is under warranty (though keep in mind your carrier's warranty policies may vary and may not cover you in the very slight chance something goes horribly wrong.)

**UPDATE #2** Please see the forum thread for additional details on your specific model. If you have an international or Verizon S5, you may no longer be able to downgrade.


1. Download Samsung Kies and back up your phone data. Remove the microSD card from your phone if you have one. Make sure your phone has a good charge (at least 50%).

2. Download the firmware you want to downgrade to at SamMobile dot com slash firmwares. (All S5s are model number SM-G900x, with the x corresponding to your carrier. Look up the model number for your carrier's phone - example, SM-G900V is Verizon, SM-G900P is Sprint, etc.) You'll probably want the latest 4.4.x version. The file will be in .zip format and will be 1.5 - 2 GB large, so be patient.

3. Once the download is complete, extract the firmware file to a place you will remember, like a folder on your desktop.

4. Download Odin from a reputable source like Softpedia or another site that tests its downloads for malware.

5. Make sure your phone is off and disconnected from your computer.

6. Open Odin. Under Options, only "Auto Reboot" and "F. Reset Time" should be checked.

7. Click the "AP" (or "PDA") box and browse for the extracted firmware file.

8. Press and hold the following buttons in order: Volume Down + Home + Power. Keep holding them until you see a screen that says "Warning!!" at the top.

9. Press the Volume Up button to continue.

10. The next screen will show the Android logo and say "ODIN MODE" at the top left.

11. Now connect your phone to your computer via USB.

12. In Odin, look to the top left and wait until you see in the leftmost box "COM" followed by a colon and a number, such as "COM:4". The number doesn't matter. Once you see that, you can proceed.

13. In the Message box in Odin, you should see several lines of text.

14. Press Start in Odin.

15. Odin will begin processing, and on your screen you will see "Downloading" with a status bar underneath.

16. When Odin is successfully finished, you will see in the Message box "All threads completed".

17. Your S5 should begin rebooting. You can disconnect from the computer.

18. If your S5 reboots successfully into good old 4.4, you're done! You can re-insert your microSD card. If your data is gone, connect to your computer and restore with Samsung Kies.

If your S5 gets stuck in booting mode (mine got stuck on the Verizon screen during booting), wait a few minutes to see if it boots. If it doesn't, remove the battery, put it back in, and try powering it on again. If that doesn't work, do the following:

1. Press in order: Volume Up + Home + Power until you see an Android screen.

2. Use Volume Down to scroll to "wipe data/factory reset" and press Power to select it. (Make sure you have backed up your phone!)

3. On the next screen, scroll to Yes, select it, and your phone will reset.

4. When it's done, select reboot system now and it will reboot. You should enter the original S5 welcome & setup process.

5. Restore your data using Samsung Kies. This will restore most of everything; you may need to re-setup the home screens and some of your settings, though.

6. If your phone still doesn't boot properly, you'll probably need to take it in to your carrier and/or make a warranty/insurance claim.

Depending on your carrier your phone will nag you once a day to update to Android 5.0. Just ignore these messages for as long as you want 4.4.

I hope this helps other folks!
 
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consv93

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Re: Downgrade Samsung Galaxy S5 (Verizon) from 5.0 to 4.4.4 KitKat?

Thanks! I reflashed it using the ROM downloaded from sammobile.com. Just wondering - are there any security risks from this site or flashing a ROM in general?
 

B. Diddy

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Re: Downgrade Samsung Galaxy S5 (Verizon) from 5.0 to 4.4.4 KitKat?

Did it work ok? I believe sammobile.com is reliable.
 

jstuntz

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I am having issues trying to get the file from SamMobile downloaded. I have sent emails to them asking for help but so far no reponse from them. When I go to download, it looks like it is downloading and then after about 30 min-1 hour, it shows completed.....BUT.... when you go to extract the zip file, it tells you that it is empty. The file manager on my computer shows an 18MB and the file shows while downloading to be a 1.7 GB file.

I hate this Android 5.0 on my Galaxy S5 so much. So many of my apps down work and it is sucking my battery dry. I have got to get this update off of my phone. I hope you can help me.
 

consv93

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I am having issues trying to get the file from SamMobile downloaded. I have sent emails to them asking for help but so far no reponse from them. When I go to download, it looks like it is downloading and then after about 30 min-1 hour, it shows completed.....BUT.... when you go to extract the zip file, it tells you that it is empty. The file manager on my computer shows an 18MB and the file shows while downloading to be a 1.7 GB file.

I hate this Android 5.0 on my Galaxy S5 so much. So many of my apps down work and it is sucking my battery dry. I have got to get this update off of my phone. I hope you can help me.

A few things you could try:

Download an earlier firmware version. For example, on Verizon, there are two 4.4.4 updates, so you could try the earlier one.

Use a different browser.

SamMobile has a premium membership with "fast downloads" for 5 pounds or euros (not sure which). I'm not sure if that would actually help or not.
 

llpc14

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Feb 13, 2015
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Thank you for a very detailed outline! I'm going to attempt to reverse the update on my S5 now. By doing this doesn't root phone correct?
 

Flussig

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Feb 13, 2015
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thanks for the guide, worked for me but hung after (left for 30mins!) flashing and ended up having to do factory reset. So glad to have v4 back!
 

T1mH

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Excellent writeup! Thank you for being so thorough and detailed. My phone did freeze on the verizon logo just as you described and doing the factory reset brought it back. WIth the Kies backup nearly everything came back.Thank you so much! Upgrading to 5.0 broke Foxfi and I rely on the ability to use my phone as a hotspot (still have unlimited verizon data plan). Thought I was going to have to give in and get a new verizon plan but I'm going to ride this unlimited data thing as long as I can. I won't be so quick to apply the next update.

It took me nearly 2 hours to download 4.4.4 from sam mobile.
 

Florian Stelian

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Hi and thanks!
Just a small problem :)
I have a fail message in Odin. I tried again and in the last second I get the same message. Should I try more? It could be something wrong wit the kitkat package?
 

skyhawk21

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I could not get it to work either. Reason being I was trying to do it with the SAMSUNG USB3 white cable in a usb2 port. The cable kept giving me a fail writing.

I found a old motorola droid stock black charge usb2 only cable, plugged it into s5, used Odin 3.10 version and now its working properly and writing update file completely. Also make sure update .zip file is crc checked and passes!
 

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