Home > android, hardware > JS5 firmware for Samsung Galaxy S i9000 is garbage

JS5 firmware for Samsung Galaxy S i9000 is garbage

After a week or so of using the Voodoo lagfix kernel, my Galaxy S started to get somewhat laggy again. I think it’s related to Voodoo not being able to convert the system partition for lack of free space (update: Voodoo can convert the system partition with my current 2.2 JPP/JPB, but not with 2.2.1 JS5).

So I’ve decided to try the latest official firmware available – JS5.

My verdict: it’s garbage.

– It is still laggy.
– It has the somewhat famous bug where applications are denied access to their own preferences.

More on the second issue. This was discovered in their first 2.2.1 firmware, I believe it was available in Norway for a month or so earliy this year (Samsung was possibly doing staged rollout / testing). Here is a description on xda-developers.

This issue was also discussed on android-developers (an official Google Group for Android SDK), was confirmed, investigated, but no-one could find a way to report it to Samsung. Their Samsung Mobile Innovator (a pretty pompous name for a developer resource site) doesn’t even mention Android. The bug was reported on Samsung’s Java ME forum, for lack of better place, but didn’t get any attention.

And here it is, still not fixed in JS5: happens if you uninstall an application or two, and then reinstall in a different order. After this, reinstalled applications will not be able to write data to their own shared preferences. The way it shows is that applications lose their settings, but because Android doesn’t shut down applications immediately, it may only become apparent overnight, or even after a few days. When this happens for your users, you will get reports like “Your application randomly loses settings after a period of time”.

It’s really quite ironic that the data loss issue is caused by Samsung’s attempts to fix the lagging file system issue. It made no sense, because all internal storage on that phone is located on the same 16 GB memory chip, just partitioned, and thus would be equally subject to lagging.

It’s also really quite ironic that the laggging is caused by a combination of Samsung’s RFS file system and the “smart” storage controller used in the Galaxy S. I recenly bought a Galaxy Ace for my cousin, and while it uses RFS, it does not have the “smart” storage controller. Guess what, no lagging whatsoever.

Finally, it seems that Samsung sells their “smart” storage controller with RFS, as a complete solution. Guess they either don’t know about lagging, or don’t care, passing the problem on to their customers (hardware vendors) and then on to their customer’s customers.

I am back to JPB/JPP (2.2), which doesn’t lose settings. Might try the Voodoo kernel again.

One thing for sure: I will not be buying the Samsung Galaxy S II (GT-i9100) when it becomes available.

Categories: android, hardware
  1. Kostya Vasilyev
    May 25, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    Mine’s finally working pretty good with the next version – JVH, based on Android 2.3.3.

  2. Alnan
    May 25, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    not noticed these issues…but the phone is very, very fast now. zero lag. only took them a year!

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