Motorola suck. They really REALLY suck and I'm not buying anything manufactured by them in future and I'd recommend others don't either. Last year, when Android phones were really beginning to hit the market, I spent quite a while choosing the right one for me. I really wanted a keyboard and the price had to be right, so at the time the only option was the Dext on Orange. It was running Android 1.5 but I *knew* that Android phones get upgraded, right? Wrong.
Motorola have promised an update to the U.S. release of the Dext (called the Cliq) for some time, but the upgrade path in Europe, S. America and elsewhere was labelled "Evaluation in progress". This was the case for months and months. The upgrade website wasn't updated but a lead figure at Motorola had announced that all Dext phones would be upgraded to 2.1. This announcement led to many more people rushing out to buy a Dext. Unfortunately it was a lie.
On August 23rd, after 6-8 months of waiting for an update. The update status website change from "Under evaulation" to "Europe will not be getting the update". Unsurprisingly, Dext owners are really angry, not just because they were lied to, not only because they were strung along for 8 months, but because the U.S. Cliq is getting the update but Motorola can't be arsed to push it out over here! The software exists, we just can't get it. So, you have a UK Dext and want Android 2.1 - then you need to take matters into your own hands...
Installing a custom ROM on a vanilla Dext involves 3 major steps:
1. Rooting the phone (gaining super-user access)
2. Flashing a recovery image to the phone (enabling a custom recovery mode)
3. Flashing a ROM to the phone (installing the new operating system)
This tutorial worked on an up-to-date UK Orange Dext with a 5025 radio. I don't guarantee it will work for you on that phone or any other, but it worked for me.
Obviously, this will void your warranty, I don't accept any responsibility for breakage and I have no clue how it all works, this is just what worked for me. If you have a problem post over at modmymobile.com. If it goes irreversibly wrong then it's no-one else's fault but your own for trying it in the first place.
That said, this method of rooting and installing ROM is fairly straightforward and not as risky as other methods. It worked for me.
Before you start, first do the following:
1. Boot into Windows
2. Download the Android SDK from here
3. Extract it to c:\android_sdk or something
4. Download and install the Motorola USB drivers from here
5. Reboot Windows
6. Plug your phone in to Windows, choose "USB drive" when prompted. Copy all your files and data (backup) to your computer, and delete any large media files/documents from the phone. (Makes the nandroid backup quicker). Then unmount the phone and plug it back in again.
6. When your Dext says "USB Drive" or "Charge only" then choose "Charge only"
7. Download this
8. Extract it to C:\Moto_MSM_Root
Now head over to the rooting tutorial on modmymobile.com
Follow the steps after "Process"
Things to look out for:
1. Read the whole tutorial before doing anything
2. Make sure that you wait until "Forked xxxx childs" appears before pressing a key at that stage of the tutorial
3. Make sure after that step you definitely have a '#'
If you complete the tutorial successfully, then your phone is rooted; which means you have super-user access to the phone.
The next step is to flash a custom recovery image. The recovery image is booted when you hold down the camera button while you power on the phone. You need a custom recovery image to flash the Android 2.1 rom.
I used this one
Follow the steps there. Make sure you remove the /system/recovery.img file. To do this you may need to remount the system folder so it's not read-only. Follow the instructions here to do that, then remove the recovery.img file. After I'd removed it I re-flashed the recovery just in case, but that's probably unnecessary.
Now, disconnect the phone. Turn it off. Then hold the camera button and turn it on. Don't release the camera button until you reach a black screen with green text. When you do, press the volume down button and wait a few seconds. You should get a nice menu with several options, this is recovery mode. One of the options will be to run a Nandroid backup. Do this! It may take several minutes to run, if it starts taking longer (mine did) then something on your phone is confusing the backup.
If this happens, remove the battery and turn the phone on again with the camera button held. Then, when you get to the menu, choose "Wipe" and then choose the first option, then second and then third, one after the other. Before doing this make sure you've backed up everything you need to to your PC. Then, run the backup again. It should work now that you've reset the phone.
Once the backup completes (whether you had to Wipe or not) turn on the phone, and plug it into Windows. If you had to Wipe the phone then you'll see motoblur setup. Ignore it, don't do anything on the phone except choose "USB Drive" from the notification area. Copy the newly created "nandroid" folder from the phone to your PC.
Download the adlx ROM zip files from here you'll need both the 2.0-signed zip and the 2.0.2 patch zip. Download both to the top directory on your phone. Check your phone battery, make sure it's pretty full. Now safely remove, disconnect and reboot your phone into the recovery mode again.
Now, Wipe your phone by choosing the top 3 options under Wipe one at a time. Then go back to the menu, choose "Flash zip from SD". Choose the 2.0-signed zip file and flash that. Reboot the phone and hold down the camera button immediately (don't let it start up). Then once in recovery mode again, choose "Flash zip from SD" once more and this time choose the 2.0.2 patch zip. Once that is complete you can reboot your phone into Android 2.1.
Note: The first time you boot your phone after Wiping and loading the ROM will take some time. If you see the "Blur" speech bubble flashing repeatedly just be patient. Don't turn the phone off at this stage otherwise it can break stuff (that's what I did and I had to re-wipe to fix it). When the phone starts up you'll get the Motoblur account setup screen. Follow through the steps and then you should be all done!