I might have been a tad stupid and most likely bricked my phone, which kinda sucks. I have already contacted support and I assume I’ll have to send it in to get it fixed.
I don’t think anyone but fairphone can help me now, but I’d still like to know where I messed up or whether there might be something wrong with my phone.
Back when I first got my FP4 one of the first things I did was unlocking the bootloader and flashing a patched kernel (most likely to slot b, I don’t think I ever actively touched slot a), but unfortunately the device did not boot with the patched kernel, so I flashed the stock kernel instead, but the device still did not boot. I switched to slot a (without flashing anything) and it still failed to boot.
Later I found out that even if I couldn’t boot from an installed kernel I could just download the kernel to the device (using
fastboot boot boot.img) and perform a tethered boot. That means I always needed my PC if I ever wanted to reboot my phone but since there was no reason to reboot I didn’t really mind. I knew that the factory imaged was coming eventually and would fix all my issues. Funnily enough I always needed to be in slot b for this to work, I couldn’t perform a tethered boot from slot a; I was under the assumption that I must have broken something without noticing.
Fast forward to last Friday. My phone did not receive the December updates until it notified me in early February, but installing the updates always failed. It started a countdown saying that it would auto install the updates in X days, which would have been last Saturday, so when the factory images were released on Friday I thought it was perfect timing for me to fix my phone.
I unlocked the critical partitions, flashed the factory image and was able to boot my FP4 without using by PC, nice. I played around for a bit to verify that everything worked and decided to be a good Android user and re-lock my bootloader.
I go into fastboot mode, do
fastboot flashing lock, reboot and BAAAAM, phone not booting. I cannot switch slots, since the bootloader is locked and the failed boot countdown does not reduce since it apparently does not even try to boot into anything but fastboot, so it will also never switch slots by itself…
get_unlock_ability flag might be persistent across reboots and factory data resets, but not across factory image flashes
Any ideas on how to (maybe) fix this mess without sending the device in?
Could there be something wrong with my device?
I’m stupid, I know.
I’m probably still spoiled from my trusty Nexus 5, this thing was unbrickable…
Since I can now edit my posts:
UPDATE 04.03.2022 (from Fairphone support):
I have to send in my device, it’ll probably cost around 30€ for Fairphone to fix it.
UPDATE 15.03.22 (from the repair center):
I just got a quote for a “repair”. They want to replace my phone. Since this statement is from the repair company and not directly from fairphone I do not know if this is final, considering, it should be possible to fix the device and, even if not, a core replacement should still be cheaper. I’m waiting for a response from official fairphone support
Small UPDATE 15.03.22:
Somewhere in the mail I got from the repair center was some contact information, I’ve asked them to elaborate as to why they think my device is unfixable, why EDL won’t work and why replacing the core module won’t work.
Small UPDATE 23.03.22:
Still no word from the repair center, but fairphone got back to me. They’ve been in touch with the repair center and it looks like I’ll get a new quotation (I hope they do not propose buying a new phone again). It should have arrived by now but, as you may have guessed, it did not.
Huge UPDATE 23.03.22:
I still did not receive a quotation from the repair center, but fairphone support just forwarded it to me. What should I say, they now want 29,90€ to fix it