The developer team over at alldroid.org has managed to gain root access to the version of the Motorola Milestone which was recently released by Telus Mobility in Canada. At first glance this doesn’t seem like news; both the Droid and Milestone were rooted months ago. The difference is the Telus version was released with the root exploit patched.
A few days after the Droid/Milestone exploit was discovered, a developer submitted the patch for it to the Android Open Source Project. The patch was accepted and merged into the source code. Interestingly, this developer was Steve Kondik aka Cyanogen who is best known for his custom ROMs which he has developed for rooted HTC phones. You can review the patch here.
The way to root a Telus Milestone is covered in detail here. Basically it consists of completely wiping the memory of the phone and then flashing the memory with the Brazilian Milestone’s operating system. This version of the Milestone software doesn’t have the exploit patched. Once this is flashed, you simply continue as normal by downloading and running a modified ‘update.zip’ file which piggybacks the root access inside an over the air update file.
Although this does give the user root access, none of the Milestone branded devices will run a boot image unless digitally signed by Motorola. This means no overclocking, custom roms, or custom recovery menu; but there are already tutorials for running interactive wallpapers, blocking unwanted advertisements, removing unwanted apps, and installing customized themes available over at alldroid.
I wonder how long until these guys figure out how to digitally sign custom ROMs? At this pace we should see them by Friday.