MetroPCS pushing bad updates

emfi2r

    I happen to be a MetroPCS customer, and own the Alcatel Onetouch Evolve2, same as the T-Mobile version.

     

    I am writing this post because maybe someone at T-Mobile can help MetroPCS get their act together before they lose hundreds, if not thousands of customers because of a programming error.

     

    Here is my story:

     

    Recently MetroPCS started pushing an update for my phone ( I updated April 7th, 2016, I forget which day exactly they pushed it).

     

    I ran the update through the pushed installation app, and got stuck in the Android update process for days. "Android is updating... Optimizing application 1 of 177" is all I saw for days.

     

    I called MetroPCS, because that is the only way to get a hold of them (they have now support email or forums). They were absolutely no help, and the only option I had was to pay $16.24 for a replacement phone because I bought it April 30, 2015. They don't provide downloadable updates, and deny ever pushing an update. They claim Android pushes updates! I tried to tell them the updates are branded to either T-Mobile or MetroPCS, but they act stupid and deny everything.

     

    After much Google research and copying the update from my SDCARD (the folder called ".downloaded") to my PC, I figured out the "update-script" file uses the newer Android command "SET_METADATA_RECURSIVE", instead of the older "SET_PERMS" command.

     

    "SET_METADATA_RECURSIVE" is not recognized by the Android update software on my phone, so the update gets aborted and the phone restarts.

     

    I manually tried to update from the sdcard (the file is called "update.zip") and viewed the progress. Here is what I got:

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Installing Update...

    Verifying Current system...

    Removing unneeded files...

    Patching system files...

    Patching boot image...

    Unpacking new files...

    Unpacking new recovery...

    Symlinks and permissions...

    Set_metadata_recursive: some changes failed

    Update.zip is not correct

    Installation aborted

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------

     

    When it came to the SET_METADATA_RECURSIVE command, it fails after overwriting the original recovery files! No recovery is possible, it just tries to Optimize application 1 of 177 forever.

     

    Without a previous factory "update-binary" file and a corrected "update-script", there is no way to fix it. I did read some pages that tell you how to edit "update-script" to use the "set_perms" command, but they said you need the correct "update-binary" file (I assume "update-binary" is the actual binary inside the zip file).

     

    How to Fix a Broken ROM Flash in Certain KitKat ROMs

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    Here is the directory layout inside the update.zip file, which is located in the folder on my sdcard called, ".dowloaded"

     

    This screen shot is from my PC. The ".downloaded" folder is in the root of my sdcard, I just copied it to my PC for analysis.

     

    Evolve2 update.jpg

     

    I couldn't find the correct "update-binary" file anywhere on the internet for this phone. MetroPCS was no help, Alcatel (who MetroPCS transfered me to durring one phone call) said they do not release binaries for US phones.

     

    I DID backup my non-rooted phone through the phone's system menu BEFORE i ran the update, but the only thing it saved was my user settings, which is WAY BIGGER than the update, "userdata_20160407_173049.backup" was the last backup, size = 269,789 kb.

     

    SO, if anyone here cares to investigate this further, It would be nice.

     

    I've restored and rooted my Monster M7 Android tablet, and some other Android phones, but the Alcatel Onetouch Evolve 2 is the first one I met that was stubborn like this, all because someone used new Android script commands to run on an older Android OS.

     

    MetroPCS does not seem to care about it's customers, and I am afraid that will reflect negatively on T-Mobile as well.

     

    Thanks for reading this

      All replies

      • smplyunprdctble

        Re: MetroPCS pushing bad updates

        Carriers don't push the updates.

        Phone Manufacturers push them.  So, in this case, Alcatel.

        You might want to try having this discussion with them.

          • emfi2r

            Re: MetroPCS pushing bad updates

            Sorry smplyunprdctble, but I disagree with you. You think the manufacturer (Alcatel) pushed an update LAST YEAR, but only for the T-Mobile version of this phone, then suddenly ALCATEL pushed one this year, but only for the MetroPCS phone?

             

            snn_555 I already stated my phone was factory unrooted!

             

            MetroPCS finally pushed the first-ever update for this phone and failed miserably.

             

            The hardware (modem, cpu, etc) manufacturer may release hardware specific updates/drivers, then maybe the phone manufacturer may release an update, but it is up to the carriers to compile branded OS images, much like modders do for Android devices, and Linux uses do for different Linux distros.

             

            Microsoft does the same thing, small patches are usually provided by Dell, Gateway or HP, with their own branding inserted.

             

            If you wanted to blame anyone, you could blame Google for taking open-source Linux, adding stuff to it, then making you sign agreements to use "their" software.

             

            T-Mobile has updates for their phones listed on this t-mobile site. They are pushed OTA. Software updates

              • stevetjr

                Re: MetroPCS pushing bad updates

                smplyunprdctble is correct the updates come from the manufacturers servers.  After a manufacturer creates an update they send it to the carrier for testing, once approved by the carrier it is then "pushed" by the manufacturer from their servers.  The only carrier involvement in Android software is testing it, development and distribution is all done by the device manufacturer.

            • Re: MetroPCS pushing bad updates

              A few things I have noticed:

               

              MetroPCS is a prepaid, take it as it is-type service, with satisfaction expected that the network perform correctly, given it is T-mobile's network.  Also, most prepaid MNVO users don't worry with updates, because usually those lower end handsets see few, if any, and usually no major updates.  I'm not trying to overly-generalize, but most people who have an issue on these networks (PagePlus, Boost, Metro, etc...) find that they can buy a replacement phone very cheap, usually on a promo, and usually well under $100.  No, that's no excuse for poor support or performance, but it is a reason.  Support is going to be lax because, you get what you pay for.  Contract/postpaid/even prepaid T-Mobile has a lot more perks in the support department.  In the end, this is Alcatel's issue because MetroPCS delivered the update, but Alcatel's part in this is the coded updated.

               

              Where you go from here given you have altered the OS environment is up to you.