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Over the weekend, I met up with my mom who I gave a Kindle Fire HD 8.9 tablet as a Christmas present last year. Well, it turns out my mom who lives in South Korea, wasn’t really using the tablet much as she couldn’t download any apps nor play any flash-enabled Korean dramas.
One of the culprits of Kindle Fire tablets is lack of support for users outside the U.S. My mom could not download any apps (due to the fact that her account address is set to South Korea and wouldn’t work even when the address was changed to her U.S. address) nor did Amazon App Store support any Korean apps (while Google Play Store has a ton of them).
So, my mom had been carrying her 8.9 HD brick for the last 9 months or so, I felt really sad that she had to put up with Amazon’s stupidity for the last 9 months. Don’t get me wrong, I love Amazon OS but when it comes to installing non-U.S. apps, it’s completely useless.
Luckily, she had a son who was very high on Android and into rooting tablets with custom ROMs. Also, XDA user Hashcode has finally gotten a very stable version of CyanogenMod 10.1 custom ROM working flawlessly on the Kindle Fire HD 8.9.
So, I did root and convert my mom’s Kindle Fire HD 8.9 into a full-fledged Pure Android tablet. Now, my mom can watch a ton of Korean dramas using Flash Player and also download thousands of Korean apps from the Play Store, allowing her to ditch her laptop and use Google apps for everyday things like checking her bank account.
I knew I should have this done earlier but at the time I got her the tablet, there was no stable ROMs for it. Anyways, here’s how to root and convert your Kindle Fire HD 8.9 int0 a 100% Pure Google Android tablet!
Before we begin, this was done on Amazon OS version 8.4.3, it also works on 8.4.6 and perhaps future versions too.
Step 1. Go into Settings->Device and make sure “Allow installation of Applications” is checked ON.
Step 2. Go into Settings->Security and set “Enable ADB” to ON.
Step 3. Connect a micro-USB cable from your Kindle Fire HD 8.9 to your computer.
Step 4. Download KindleFireHD89Root.zip and unzip, you should get a folder called KindleFireHD89Root with all the files you need.
Step 5. Go to Device Manager on your computer and make sure to install the drivers. If you don’t have drivers installed, see the video tutorial that shows you step-by-step.
Step 6. Enable hidden files and folders.
Step 7. Copy the adb_usb.ini file from the usb driver folder to your user .android folder. If you don’t get it, watch the video tutorial.
Step 8. Open up a command prompt and type:
You should see something like below, then you are good to go!
Step 9. Go back to the KindleFireHD89Root directory and double-click on RunMe.bat to start rooting your Kindle Fire HD 8.9.
Step 10. Type 1 and hit Enter.
Step 11. When you see a message to look at your device, go to your tablet and hit “Restore my data”.
Step 12. Your Kindle Fire HD 8.9 will reboot once and let it sit until everything is done, DO NOT TOUCH ANYTHING!
Step 13. You should now find an app called “Superuser” app, your Kindle Fire HD 8.9 is fully rooted. You can stop here if you just need root for your tablet but keep going if you want to install TWRP recovery and CM10.1 custom ROM.
Step 14. (Optional Backup) I skipped this part in the video but if you are paranoid then you can enter the following to backup your current system:
adb shell su -c "dd if=/dev/block/mmcblk0boot0 of=/sdcard/boot0block.img"
adb shell su -c "dd if=/dev/block/platform/omap/omap_hsmmc.1/by-name/boot of=/sdcard/stock-boot.img"
adb shell su -c "dd if=/dev/block/platform/omap/omap_hsmmc.1/by-name/recovery of=/sdcard/stock-recovery.img"
adb shell su -c "dd if=/dev/block/platform/omap/omap_hsmmc.1/by-name/system of=/sdcard/stock-system.img"
adb pull /sdcard/boot0block.img
adb pull /sdcard/stock-boot.img
adb pull /sdcard/stock-recovery.img
adb pull /sdcard/stock-system.img
Step 15. Go back to command prompt and copy & paste the following line-by-line:
adb push stack /data/local/tmp/
dd if=/data/local/tmp/stack of=/dev/block/platform/omap/omap_hsmmc.1/by-name/system bs=6519488 seek=1
mount -o remount,rw ext4 /system
mv /system/etc/install-recovery.sh /system/etc/install-recovery.sh.bak
mount -o remount,ro ext4 /system
Step 16. Your screen should now say “Fastboot mode”.
Step 17. Next type:
fastboot -i 0x1949 flash bootloader kfhd8-u-boot-prod-8.1.4.bin
Step 18. You will most likely get “waiting for device”. You need to install drivers again like you did earlier so go ahead and install drivers for “Jem-PVT-Prod-04″ in Device Manager. Watch the video tutorial if you have trouble.
Step 19. Once drivers are installed, the command should go through.
Step 20. Next type:
fastboot -i 0x1949 flash boot kfhd8-freedom-boot-8.4.3.img
fastboot -i 0x1949 flash recovery kfhd8-twrp-184.108.40.206-recovery.img
fastboot -i 0x1949 reboot
Step 21. Now your Kindle Fire HD 8.9 should have rebooted. We’ve just finished installing 2nd bootloader and TWRP recovery. If you don’t want to install CM10.1 custom ROM, you can stop here. Otherwise, download and copy the custom ROM files you want to install on your Kindle Fire HD 8.9.
Step 22. Turn off your tablet then Power on. Immediately after powering on, hit the Volume Up button and the “fire” should turn to blue, this will enter you into TWRP recovery.
Step 23. You can make a backup of your Amazon OS before installing a new custom ROM. This will allow you to easily revert back to Amazon OS if needed later down the road. Simply use the Restore function on TWRP recovery if you need to restore later.
Step 24. To install CM10.1, choose “Wipe” and do a factory reset.
Step 25. After that, choose “Install” and install the CM10.1 ROM zip file.
Also install Gapps after installing ROM so you get Play Store and other Google apps.
Step 26. Reboot your tablet and you should see CyanogenMod boot animation.
Step 27. After about 5 minutes, you should be welcomed with the welcome screen and once you get here, your Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 tablet has been fully converted into a pure Android tablet, congrats!
If you want louder volume and also have ability to tweak the sound, download and install Viper4Android FX APK file. Choose “Cortex A9 with NEON” for installation” or “Cortext Ax” and reboot. (Credits)
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