Unroot and Revert Back T-Mobile Galaxy S3 SGH-T999 to Stock Original Firmware

This guide will simply show you the rest of the process for unrooting and restoring back the T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S3 (SGH-T999) to its original or official default firmware. This is a quite useful for those who needs to unroot, restore the Galaxy S3 T999 from modified state or from any modification that made by owners, including removing custom ROM and custom recoveries. Rooting is very tempting for it gives us the super access from the device that let us install a wide-range of apps from Google Play Store that needs root permission before we can actually installed it directly to the device. Bunch of custom ROMs from after-market developers are also quite amazing for it will delight us to another level of experience and beyond expectations, less compared to what the manufacturers and carrier providers offered from their official OS.

Why and when do we need to unroot or restore back our Galaxy S3 T999 to factory stock?

There are some disadvantages from rooting or any modification, one – it will void the warranty of the device. Sometimes the device will not accept any official software updates (OTA/Kies).  There are also some circumstances that the custom ROM you’ve installed wasn’t a stable build. So, again if you want to undo every thing and restore back your Samsung Galaxy S3 T999 to its original default state, just read the rest of this guide.

In addition, this method is also useful to manually downgrade or upgrade your T-Mobile Galaxy S3 T999 to any official firmware, either Ice Cream Sandwich or Jelly Bean updates released by Samsung and T-Mobile.

Unroot Samsung Galaxy S3 T999 T-Mobile

First check your flash binary counter if already triggered, you can do this by booting into Download Mode options.
– Turn the Galaxy s3 off, then gently press and hold the Volume Down+Home+Power button. Then press volume up.
Then check if it indicates a number of counts.

If it shows like “Yes (1 Counts)” or more, you need to reset it first to completely restore your Galaxy S3 from custom modification. If there is no counts shows, you may skip this process and continue to the following method below.

How to reset the Flash/Binary counter for the Samsung Galaxy SIII T-Mobile SGH-T999
To reset the T-Mo Samsung Galaxy S3 binary flash counter, grab the Triangle Away by Chainfire. Then follow this guide.

  1. Download and install Triangle Away from Google Play Store.
  2. Launch Triangle Away. Triangle Away require you to download some data  S3. So, Enable Wifi connection and then click download.
  3. After download complete, click Reset flash counter.
  4. Your phones will boot into Reset flash counter warning Menu.
  5. Press volume out button to start reset S3 flash counter.
  6. The phone will reboot once reset flash counter process completes

Now confirm again in download mode if the counter was already reset. It must display “0 counts”.

Now, once you already managed resetting the binary flash country, you may then proceed to re-install its original or official firmware provided by Samsung for T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S3 SGH-T999. This will erase or wipe the root kernel and completely unroot your Samsung Galaxy S3.

Step 1: Important Reminders before Flashing Stock ROM to Unroot Samsung Galaxy S3 (T999 T-Mobile)

  • Make sure that your phone’s battery is fully charge.
  • Stock ROM packages comes in two formats the ‘Full-Wipe’ (delete your stored data after flashing) and the ‘Non-Wipe’ (it doesn’t delete your phone’s stored data) but it is highly recommended to make a back up all important files stored from your phone’s internal memory – contacts, messages, etc.  before flashing no-matter if it is Full-Wipe or Non-Wipe,  just to be safe and ensure that your stored data are in  safe  if something went wrong during the flashing process.
  • If your device currently rooted or runs in a custom ROM, make sure to back-up data via custom recovery and perform “Wipe data/dalvik cache” to get rid of bootloops and other issues.
  • Use a PC or laptop that runs in Windows OS, with a good and perfectly working USB serial port. Odin will not work on MAC OS.
  • Use the supplied USB cable for your Galaxy S3.
  • Enable USB debugging from your phone’s settings. Go to Settings > Applications > Development, and tick the box that says ‘Enable USB Debugging’.
  • Ensure that KIES is closed and not running in the system tray! Kies will interrupt and doesn’t like Odin, it will block you from flashing.

Step 2: Download the needed tools for flashing

Odin3_v3.07 and USB driver which can be also found on the factory stock firmware page.

Grab your Samsung Galaxy S3 T-Mo T999 Original Firmware or Stock ROM
What is a Stock ROM?
Stock ROMs are the firmware that has been released from Samsung Kies official firmware server. These are being pulled from Kies by an Android firmware experts and carefully re-bundled it to make it flashable by using Odin flasher tool. This is useful to create custom ROMs, root kernels, fixing bricked devices, unrooting and restoring back to original factory firmware.

SGH-T999 (U.S. T-Mobile)
Download the Factory Stock Firmware: You can choose what version you want, either the Ice Cream Sandwich or the Jelly Bean.

Step 3: Install the USB Driver and Extract the downloaded stock ROM

Install the USB Driver first to get rid of flashing failures. Also  need to extract the downloaded file which is packed in zip or rar files, so that you’ll get the tar.md5 file.

Step 4: Run and Configure Odin

Run Odin downloader Odin3_v3.07 on your PC desktop. Watch out the check-boxes options on the right top of Odin, ensure that the ‘RE-PARTITION’ is unchecked, only  the ‘AUTO-REBOOT and ‘F.RESET TIME’ checkboxes are both remained checked.

Step 5: Reboot your Galaxy S3 into Download Mode

To reboot the Galaxy S3 into  download mode , you need to turn the power off.  After it completely shut off,  just  press and hold the Volume Down key,  Home button and the Power ON/OFF button simultaneously.

You should then prompted into a warning screen and asking you  to press volume up if you want to continue or volume down to cancel, just simply press volume up to get into download mode. The download mode then displays an Android robot and say’s “Downloading.. Do not turn off target!!”

Step 6: Connect your Phone to PC or Laptop

Once you already reboot the phone in download mode,  simply connect the phone to your PC or laptop USB.
In Odin window – the ID:COM box will turn to blue color and indicates the COM port number and a word “Added” on a log box will prompt you that the device is already detected or recognized by Odin. Your COM port number might be different from mine. If you do not see a COM port number then there’s something missing or wrong. You may read again from the top of this post.

Step 7: Load the binary .tar.md5 file

Most of the stock firmware is pack in a single .tar.md5 file only.  Now, you need to just simply click on the PDA button, then browse to the folder where the .tar or .tar.md5 you have previously extracted and then select and load it.

Below is an example using the original ICS 4.0.4 firmware
Note: Do not put a ‘PIT’ file.

odin flashing T-0Mobile Samsung Galaxy SIII SGH-T999

Step 8: Start Flashing or Installing the stock ROM

Once if all set and ready to fire-up, hit the “START” button in Odin to begin flashing the stock ROM.
Do not ever interrupt the phone while already in flashing progress, like disconnecting the cable or turning off the device. Just wait until it completely finish.

Step 9: Watch out for the word PASS!!

When the Stock ROM installation successfully completes, you will then see a word “PASS” in Odin. This indicates that the flashing was already finish, and on the log box it says “All threads completed. (succeed 1 / failed 0)”. The phone will just then automatically reboot, then it’s time to remove it from PC or laptop USB connection.

Confirm if you successfully unroot or restore your Galaxy S3 (T-Mobile SGH-T999) to default firmware.

Confirm your fresh firmware installed,
Go to Settings>About Phone>Firmware info.
You can also do factory reset by setting  the device into recovery mode:  Turn it off, then press and hold the (Volume U+Home +Power button). The select  “Wipe Data/Factory Reset”.

Possible errors that you may encountered, this is based on my own experience while flashing stock ROM on Samsung Android devices. These are just a few hints on how to resolved it.

Q: I got an error message that says “Set-up connection Failed” ?
A: 1. Check your USB connection from the phone to PC,
2. Connect to another PC USB port
3. Check and try to another USB cable
4. Re-install the USB driver.
Q: Odin just suddenly stuck in the middle of nowhere while in flashing progress, It isn’t responding at all?
A: Check for possible program that might interrupt the process, like disabling the anti-virus and closing any running programs.
Try to use another PC or laptop,
Q: I experienced bootloop or the phone just stuck on Welcome Logo (phone always stop at bootanimation) and it won’t boot normally?
A: You can fix it via recovery mode option, do this:
Boot in recovery mode
1. Press and hold Volume Up, Home and Power button.
2. Use volume keys to select, Up and Down and Power or Home key to select the option
3. Select Wipe Data/Factory Reset using the Home button.
4. Next select the Wipe Cache Partition
5. Lastly, select Reboot System Now to reboot your Galaxy S3 in Normal mode.

That’s it!
Any  other questions? Just drop it on our comment form below.

One thought on “Unroot and Revert Back T-Mobile Galaxy S3 SGH-T999 to Stock Original Firmware”

  1. I have an sgh_t999 with no OS & I try to boot to recovery bUT it just redirectseems to Odin mode saying can’t boot to recovery and it’s not recognized by my mac book when I plug it in I can’t get Odin to work on my macbook either …. I’m pretty sure I have the correct files for flashing stock firmware to the phone but have no idea how to do that if my computer won’t recognize my phone …. any idea how to get around this

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