In this video tutorial, I’ll be discussing how to use SP Flash tool. Now, for You to use SP Flash tool, You of course need Your SP Flash tool. I’ll be using version 3 & 5. Now, they’re basically the same thing but some people tend to get confused using them and they also have some distinct differences. I’ll be using both versions so its clear for whichever one You’re going to be using. You would also need Your VCOM drivers [Alarm Clock] which is Your USB VCOM drivers. Now, You might have noticed that when trying to flash using SP Flash tool, the SP Flash tool might just remain at 0%, no flashing, nothing happening. That’s because You don’t have the VCOM drivers. Now, there’s already a video on that (I already created a video on that) so You can check the video tutorial but just to make it clearer for everybody, I’ll be going through the process of installing the VCOM drivers all over again in this tutorial so You get it from start to finish. Now, You’ll also need the VCOM drivers so just check the description of this tutorial, You should get the download link or You go to our website [Alarm Clock] Search for how to use SP Flash tool. You should find the written version of this video tutorial and You can get the links to all these software You’ll be needing. Of course You’ll need the files You’ll be flashing which is my stock backup In this case I’m using an old OS Tecno M3. Now, I also have my Tecno M3 here with me and I’ve bricked this phone just for the purpose of this tutorial so I’ll be flashing the files to this my Tecno M3 here and I have my USB cord right here so these are the things you’ll basically need for this tutorial. Now, I’ll briefly touch the content of the stock backup. Now, this as You see here is not the complete backup; this is just a “Files to Flash”. This is just a collection of the essential files You’ll be needing for SP Flash tool. Now, most people tend to think all You need for SP Flash tool is Your scatter file. The scatter file here is just like a map, its a key. Its what tells SP Flash tool the partition table of Your phone and tells it where to flash what file. Its just a key so You can’t exactly use SP Flash tool with Your scatter file only. Scatter file is just one out of the several components You would need but the scatter file is a very important one, it acts as your key to using SP Flash tool so that’s a scatter file there. Also, You would have to have the file you wish to flash. In a case You need to flash just one file, You’ll need Your scatter file and just that one file. In a case You need to flash many files, You’ll need scatter file and all the files You need (to flash). So basically Your scatter file is just like the key to flash and You need other files which scatter file will be helping You to flash. Since we have all these, I’ll proceed. Now, the first thing You’ll want to do (of course) as I promised You, I will take You through the installation of Your VCOM driver. I already have my VCOM driver extracted. Alright! This is my USB [Alarm Clock] VCOM driver here Alright! Now, if You look here, all I have is Windows 7 and I’m using a Windows 8 PC but since Windows 7 and Windows 8 are very close in driver usage (or in the drivers You’ll need), I can safely install my Windows 7 drivers on my Windows 8. So, we have the drivers ready. Now, the first thing You would want to do before You talk about using SP Flash tool at all is to install the drivers. Now, for SP Flash tool, You don’t need an internet connection so don’t worry about an internet connection. Everything can be done offline. Installing the drivers, the first thing You’ll want to do is open Device Manager so I’ll search for Device Manager here Alright! Here’s my Device Manager. Now, what we’re basically going to be doing here is we’re going to be manually installing this VCOM driver. There’s an automatic method of installing where You use an installer but You’re going to be manually installing it just in case You don’t have access to the automatic installer. So, the first thing You’ll want to do here is to just click anything, just click any item on the list, any item at all on the list. Once You click an item, You go to Action, then Add Legacy Hardware. From here, a Wizard will popup. From here, You click Next. Now, before You proceed at this point (lest I forget), If You’re using a Windows 8 (and above) PC. Its very important You disable driver signature verification. Now, there’s a video on that, I created a (YouTube) video on that. You can also check our website for how to disable Windows driver signature verification because If You don’t disable that, You will not be able to install an unsigned driver. Now, this driver I’m trying to install is unsigned. It doesn’t mean its not going to work It doesn’t mean its dangerous or something, its just not signed. You understand? So basically, Windows 8 (and 10) just believes that any unsigned driver must be unsafe so it doesn’t allow You to go ahead to install that. So You need to first disable signature verification If You’re using Windows 8 before You proceed with this. Check my list of previously uploaded video tutorials or You go to our website for how to disable signature verification on Your Windows 8 (and 10). So, from here, You click “Install the hardware that I manually select from a list…” then Next You just click Next here. Now, at this point, You click “Have Disk..” Now, here I’m going to chose the driver I wish to install so I just go straight to my Hovatek folder My VCOM drivers. USB VCOM (don’t forget), Windows 7. Since I now have Windows 8, Windows 8 & 7 are close as I earlier mentioned so I can use Windows 7. Now, my PC is a 64 bit PC so I just select 64 bit. Now, for those who don’t know how to check if theirs is 32 or 64 bit, quickly just go to My Computer, right-click on it, click on Properties and You’ll see Yours PC. Mine is the system type 64 bit, here it is. So that’s how you just check it. Right click on My Computer – Properties and that is it. Alright, lets proceed with the installation of the driver So from here, I’ve loaded the driver I wish to select (let me do that again just in case You’ve forgotten) Go straight to where the folder is, You select that for your PC (mine is 64 bit). If Yours is 32 bit, select this instead. Mine is 64 bit, I select and then (click) Open and then (click) OK. Now, this is the warning I earlier mentioned, “This driver is not digitally signed”. This is nothing to worry about. You just [Plane Overhead] have to proceed and then You click Next..and Next so we’re installing this. [Plane Overhead] Now, this is finished. Now, If (after the installation), that’s assuming You disabled the [Plane Overhead] signature verification and You were able to get to this stage, You’ll get this “This device cannot start (code 10)”. Most people tend to panic at this point. This is really nothing to panic about. Now, the reason why You’re getting this code 10 basically is because You installed an unsigned driver. Now, when You install an unsigned driver in Windows 8 (and 10), Windows tends to assume it might not work. Now, notice my language [Car Horn]. I said it might not work, doesn’t mean it will not work. It might not work because its unsigned. So the only reason why You’re getting this error is because the driver You’ve installed is unsigned. That doesn’t mean its not going to work and I can guarantee You that its most likely going to work as far as You installed the correct drivers which it is in this case. So despite the fact that I’m getting my device cannot start code 10 error is nothing to worry about. Its just because the driver is unsigned so I just click Finish. So my driver is installed. Now, to crosscheck if my driver is installed (still under my Device Manager), I scroll down and I see my Mediatek DA USB VCOM Port and my Mediatek Preloader USB VCOM so Yes, I have it installed. Now, this yellow triangle is related to the code 10 error I earlier mentioned. Its nothing to worry about. Its just because its unsigned, that is all it is. This is for Spreadtrum here but we’re basically focusing on the MTK which are these here. So my VCOM drivers are installed and I am good to go. Now, Straight to SP Flash tool. Now, I’ll be using SP Flash tool version 3 first so I’ll open the version 3 folder. Now, what You would want to do to use this is You right-click on Sp flash tool and You run as Administrator. Now, the reason why I’m running as Admin (click Yes to confirm) is just to avoid permission issues. When using SP Flash tool. Sometimes, If You’re not running as Admin, You might not be able to run certain files or use certain system resources, You know? things like that basically but You should be able to use it in normal mode if You’re not the Admin but if You can run as Admin, its just better You run as Admin. So now, in SP Flash tool, there’s basically no setting You would need to run What You just need to do is to load Your scatter file. I’m using version 3 first, I’ll repeat the same procedure for version 5 so I click on Scatter-loading Now, in this Window that pops up, what You’ll want to do is to go to where You have Your files which You want to flash. Now, remember mine is the stock backup for this. So I select my scatter file here and I click Open. Now, I’m getting error initializing scatter file failed Please, check the name of scatter file which you load is legal Now, the reason why I’m getting this error is because the version of SP Flash tool I’m using is too low For the kind of backup I have, You understand? So for me to be able to use SP Flash tool, I need to use v5 That’s what this is telling me. So basically, I cannot use v3 to flash this phone which I’m using, I have to move to v5. but I still want to show You what version 3 is going to look like so let me just look for another file which v3 should be able to at least list for You even if You’re not flashing. I need You to at least see a list. Tecno D3 should be able to at least have. Alright! this is basically what v3 is going to look like that is if its going to be compatible with Your phone. Its going to be the same thing as us using v5 just take note of where the following things are. Format, Firmware Upgrade, Download Those are just the basic things You need to take note of. I’ll explain these things in v5. but its basically the same thing. There’s also Read back for you to backup a phone but is beyond the scope of this (guide). There’s a (YouTube) video on how to backup a working phone using SP Flash tool You can checkout the video or tutorial on our website but basically, this is what Your v3 is going to look like. Now, You would see this part in red. Your Preloader & DSP_BL. The reason why the two are in red is just like a warning. Its more like telling You “Do not flash these files unless You really need to or unless You’re really sure of what You’re doing”. As I earlier mentioned, preloader.bin and dsp_bl are basically Your preloader files. They help Your phone to show a sign of life. If You really Do not need to flash these files Do not flash them. If Your phone is totally dead then You can go ahead to flash them (i.e has no sign of life) but if it has a sign of life (i.e can respond to power button), do not flash preloader.bin unless You’d flashed a wrong one mistakenly or something. Just do not flash this at will. You’ll see that the rest are ticked. We have uboot, boot, recovery and the rest. You’ll see that some are ticked and some are not ticked. like this (cache) is not ticked. Now, the reason why some would be ticked and some would not be ticked is because they’re not present in that particular stock backup which You have So what that basically means is that if You load a scatter file from a folder containing Your stock rom and a particular file is not there in that same directory where the scatter file is, it will not appear here When I load this scatter file here, the only files its going to see are all these files here. Any that is outside this folder, this scatter file will not see it in SP Flash tool. That explains why cache is not ticked because if cache was in the same folder as the scatter file was, it would also be ticked as all these others are ticked but because its not ticked, that means its not present there. Of course, there’s a way for You to manually load a file. In a case where its not appearing here for one reason or the other. Maybe its in a different location or somehow its just not loading. There’s a way You can manually load a file. Now, for You to manually load a file, I’ll assume my boot.img was not ticked for example and we’re using (Tecno) D3 in this case. For me to manually load my boot.img All I have to do is just tick bootimg (assuming it wasn’t ticked when I loaded the scatter file) All You have to do is just tick the item that was not automatically loaded then double-click it. Now, I need to make You see something. If You look at cache here, You’ll see that cache is not ticked. This front part is empty. That shows You that there’s no file linked to Your cache But because boot has a file linked to it, You see this. So I’m going to assume that boot.img is also empty as cache. So for You to manually load it, You tick the item that was not automatically loaded then You double-click the name. For v3, that’s how You manually load. but for v5, this is where You click. For v5, You click here, this field here (just in case I forget to mention that in v5) For v3, You double-click the name. So I’ll double-click the name of boot.img, select and (click) Open Automatically, a path is going to appear here. That means my bot is now loaded So that’s basically how to manually load a file. Once You have Your files loaded and You’re ready to go All You have to do is just click Your Download or Firmware Upgrade (whichever one You’re doing) Now, when You click Download, You use Download when You’re flashing not all the files, just a selection of them, not everything You understand? If I’m going to flash these now, I’ll need to use Download I cannot use Firmware Upgrade because Download allows me to flash files when everything is not selected but Firmware Upgrade requires that everything on that list is selected Now, there’s a way You can actually modify Your scatter file to make everything get selected but I’ll not be going through that. You can just Google how to or just go to our website Search for how to modify a scatter file and You can see a guide on that. There’s also a (YouTube) video on that You can check our channel for a video on how to modify a scatter file. So, I will not be going through that. For You to use firmware upgrade, everything here has to be ticked When everything here is ticked and they all have files attached to them, You can go ahead with Firmware Upgrade but because not everything is ticked, all I can use is a Download I will not be using v3 (to flash) because I don’t have a Tecno D3 here, what I have is an M3. Lest I forget, its very important You do not flash files for one phone model to another You don’t flash Tecno D3 files to an M3 just because they (both) have 3 in the names. As far as its not D3, You have no business flashing the files.. unless they’re very very close. Basically, If You’re not sure how close they are chipset-wise, avoid it to be on a safe side I’ll not be using version 3, I’ll close v3. [Car Horn]. So basically, You already have an idea of how v3 work I click my Download or my Firmware Upgrade depending on which You’re going to be using and then once I click my Download, it will give me this message Not all images are correctly loaded which may cause boot up issue! Do you still want to go on downloading anyway? You click Yes, its nothing to worry about since You’re not downloading all files, its just warning You that You might not have some essential files which You might need so do You still want to proceed? Of course You want to proceed. So at this point, Stop is going to be in red and every other thing grayed out. So what You need to do now is to just remove the battery from your phone and slot it back in (just power off if inbuilt) without booting the phone. You then connect the phone to the PC via Your USB cord. Once You connect via USB cord, flashing should begin. That is v3 but I will not be using that here because v3 doesn’t support the M3 which I have here. I’ll be using v5 for that very tutorial. So, that’ll be that for v3. I’ll click Stop Alright! Now, version 5. This is what I’ll be using to flash. I’ll run as Administrator Now, one thing You should know about version 5 is that it could take some time to load [Error: Initializing scatter file failed] Don’t worry about this, its just a normal error, at least at the initial stage. v5 takes some time to load so its very important You be patient with it. Now, one thing about SP Flash tool is that You do not interrupt it. Once its starts flashing its best You leave it till it finishes the flashing. If You interrupt it in the middle of flashing or read back The phone is just going to go dead as in totally dead. No lights, no power, zero! dead! Now, when that happens (if You accidentally interrupt SP Flash tool), its nothing to panic about. What You basically need to do is take out the battery and slot it back in and keep charging the phone If the battery is non-removable, just connect the phone to a power source and keep charging just keep charging. The phone will eventually come up. Alright! So we’ll be using v5 of Sp Flash tool. I’ll just quickly take You through what v5 really does [Alarm Clock], the functions You have in v5 and how to use them to flash your phone. OK. in version 5, The first thing You would want to do is to load the scatter file so I click Scatter-loading Locate the stock backup, select the scatter file and then (click) Open. Alright! So You can see that not all items are ticked. I have my cache and userdata not ticked. Now, I already explained the reason why they’re not ticked; besides, these two files are very optional files so the phone will work fine whether or not You flash them so You don’t really need to flash them. What you basically need to do at this point is to decide whether You want to format first or download or You want to do a Firmware Upgrade. I already mentioned You do not flash preloader at any point If You don’t need it (don’t bother flashing it) but You can decide to flash or not if You want Now, for You to select the file You wish to flash, all You have to make sure is that the file is ticked. So what that means is that If I proceed with flashing, all these files will be flashed. If I want to exclude a particular file, all I have to do is untick that file. Alright! So If I proceed with flashing at this point, all that will be flashed are uboot, boot.img & recovery image alright? but if You want to flash more files, You can tick. Its very important that You don’t tick files that don’t have a path in front of them. As You can see, all these files that are ticked have paths in front of them That means they’re actually linked to specific files so If You go ticking these two files for example and You try to flash, You’ll get an error because they don’t have any files linked to them, they have no path So You do not tick them. In a case where You really need to flash a file and the file is not appearing here for any reason or the other and You do have that file in the backup, what You need to do is to manually load. the file, all You have to do is just tick the file so I’ll assume my recovery was not loaded despite me having a recovery.img in the same folder as the scatter file so I just tick my recovery then double-click. It will popup a Window. All You have to do is select the recovery image and (click) Open. So the recovery image will now have a path. That’s how to manually load a file in a case where the file does not appear loaded as in the case of cache and userdata. At this point now, I’ll proceed. You could decide to format but I’ll advise You to only format when You really need to (as I’d earlier mentioned). If You want to proceed with formatting anyway All You need to do is disconnect the phone from the PC at this point, select Auto Formatt Flash and Format whole flash except bootloader then You click Start. Now, Stop is going to be in green. So what You just need to do at this point is to take out the battery from the phone [Car Horn] put the battery back in without switching on the phone. So the phone is off with the battery in. [Car Horn] You just connect the phone to the PC via a USB cord and watch the formatting process. Once formatting is done, You’ll get a green box saying OK. You’ll notice that after formatting Your phone will be dead; no power, no sign of life, nothing! Now, don’t panic. The reason why Your phone is dead is because You formatted the phone without replacing it with any OS so obviously, You phone is going to remain dead. For You to bring Your phone back to life, You need to flash the complete backup (rom) to it. It needs to contain preloader.bin to bring back Your phone. So I advise You only format when You need to and have the necessary files to revive the phone after formatting. If you don’t have the files, do not format. I will not be formatting here, I will just be downloading. Now, You have the following options; Format all + Download, Firmware Upgrade and Download only Now, the Format all + Download is going to do a format first before it downloads in which case all items will need to be ticked (in most cases). For the Firmware Upgrade, all items need to be ticked. So we cannot use this option in this case because cache & userdata are not ticked so we can’t do a Firmware Upgrade, all we can do is a Download. So for this case, we select Download but if You really need to do a Firmware Upgrade, that means if You have all the files and You wish to flash everything and all items are ticked here, all You have to do is select Firmware Upgrade from here and then click Download. You can see all files are automatically ticked but because these two don’t have a path, this is going to fail So its best we just stick to Download Only.. Now, I’m going to use Download Only What You’ll need to do next is make sure Your phone is not connected to the PC & switched off (with battery in) So just click Download. Now, to save time, I will not be flashing all files. I’ll be flashing only the boot image but its going to be the same procedure (of course) as if You’re flashing everything, it’ll just take a longer time to flash (all files). For example, I’l just be flashing boot.img but if You want to flash any file at all, all You have to do is tick that particular file to flash. Just to make it fast, I’ll be flashing only boot.img. Once I have my boot.img selected, its ticked and has a path, [Alarm Clock] all I do is click Download Now, Stop is going to be in red (v3) or green (v5). I’ve removed the battery, put it back in, phone is switched off still with the battery inside (power off if inbuilt). All I’m going to do now is connect the phone to the PC via USB cord and flashing should begin. Its very important You give this time. Just because its staying this way doesn’t mean nothing is happening. I’m having not responding. Its very important You do not try to disconnect because if You disconnect at this point, the phone will go dead in which case You’ll have to keep charging to do anything. Alright! So once flashing is successful, You’re going to get the prompt to confirm that. I have a Download OK so my flashing was successful. So, I’m going to flash something that will take longer so You’ll see the loading process. If You intended to flash both boot and Android, You could just tick both of them and flash it once but I just want You to see the load process this time around so I’m going to be clicking Download. My version 5 seems to be acting up, it gets that slow at times. Its important You’re patient with it Do not rush it, don’t interrupt it. The reason why I’m going with Android this time around is because I want You to see the loading process. I’m going to connect the phone to the PC now. and watch download begin. Alright! It is flashing. For the boot.img I flashed, its because the file is so light and everything just happened within a few seconds and looked like nothing really happened. This is going close to 300 Mb if not 400 Mb in size so that of course takes a longer time to flash. Now, we’re seeing the flashing procedure. At this point, do not disconnect, do not interrupt, just let it flash If You mistakenly interrupt and Your phone goes dead, do not panic. Just keep charging. Uninstall VCOM drivers, reinstall. Remove the battery if its removable, slot it back in. Keep charging. Eventually, Your phone is going to come up and You’ll be able to flash again. So we just wait for this flashing procedure to finish. While waiting, SP Flash Tool also has a Read Back function which allows you backup your rom There’s already a video tutorial at the website, also a YouTube video so check them out. It has a Memory Test also to test for crashed Nand / Emmc and device’s state Sometimes, when people flash with SP flash tool, the phone doesn’t come up, it just remains like that. You have to make sure that your battery is actually well charged. After flashing remove the battery (if its removable), slot it back in then boot into recovery mode and do a Factory Reset if the phone doesn’t boot up normally after You’ve done the flashing. Few devices require an SD card to boot up Alright! Flashing is complete and I have a green OK sign so my phone is going to come up. If Your phone is still stuck at logo, boot into recovery mode and do a factory reset So basically, that’s just how to use SP Flash tool. I’ll just go ahead and close this.