Last Updated: January 28th, 2013

As of the newest update (1_65K_1027), this method no longer works. Refer to this post for the most recent method (which also works on this build).

Republic Wireless hit the scene with an interesting idea: to offer full-fledged mobile service for $19 a month. The low-cost service relies on customers using Wi-Fi and "hybrid Wi-Fi calling" in order to keep the cost low, and, for the time being, RW only has one phone: the Motorola Defy XT.

This phone, of course, has been modified to work with RW's network, and as such, isn't like other versions of the same device. Since this is the one and only phone being sold by RW at the time, many customers are chomping at the bit, wanting to know one thing: how can I root this thing?!

Fortunately, our boy jcase did his magic on RW's Defy XT and figured out a way to make it happen. Here's how to do it.

Disclaimer: Android Police isn't responsible for any harm to your device - proceed at your own risk.

First things first - you'll need adb set up. There are plenty of guides across the net if you're not sure how.

Once adb is ready to go, download this file (MD5: 305426137c9f641b33c05d7ba3c4efc7), which contains everything you'll need to achieve root. [Mirror 1, 2]

After that, just unzip the file and launch a command prompt/terminal from the folder with the contents.

Now, push all the file to the phone:

adb push cruelintents.sh /data/local/

adb push su /data/local/

From there, you'll need to run the first stage of the exploit.

adb shell chmod 755 /data/local/cruelintents.sh

adb shell /data/local/cruelintents.sh -break

adb reboot

At this point, the device will bootloop - don't panic, this is normal! Carry on.

While the phone is bootlooping, go ahead and send the second stage command:

adb wait-for-device shell /data/local/cruelintents.sh -fix

Lastly, just install SuperSU:

adb install eu.chainfire.supersu-1.apk

You're now rooted! Enjoy.

We'd like to give a special shoutout to Chainfire for letting jcase package SuperSu in this exploit.

Cameron Summerson
Cameron is a self-made geek, Android enthusiast, horror movie fanatic, musician, and cyclist. When he's not pounding keys here at AP, you can find him spending time with his wife and kids, plucking away on the 6-string, spinning on the streets, or watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre on repeat.

  • nerys

    Oh HECK YEAH FINALLY. now to wait till I swap out the SB for the DB model :-)

    • http://twitter.com/BiggiePhat JG

      you...cant unless you pay full price for that.

      • nerys

        When I bought the defy we (me and rw) were unaware it was only a single band phone. SO they are going to let me (and others in my same position from waves A-E) swap the single band phone for the dual band phone at no cost. obviously I will have to return the single band phone so don't want to mess with rooting that one since it won't be mine any longer.

        will wait till I get the DB model.

        • http://twitter.com/BiggiePhat JG

          did not hear that source or link to that please. i opted for the free single band replacing the optimus but it was said if you want the dual band you must pay if you opted to take the free single band.

        • Brandon Watkins

          im in the same boat but they told me to wait for an email to letting me know when its available. Do you know anything else about when we can send our phones in and get the duel band version?

          • nerys

            speak of the devil got my e-mail today. it errored when I clicked the button but on refresh it appears to have done whatever it needs to do. so now waiting for my new toy :-)

            It would be a great idea if they allowed people to BUY the single band for a lower price. if they offered it for say $150 I would probably do that.

          • Brandon Watkins

            well sadly i still haven't got mine, maybe your in a higher wave then me. But yeah i totally agree.

          • Brandon Watkins

            Sweet i just got mine like 9 seconds ago!

          • I Hate Idiots

            It's DUAL you moron!

          • http://twitter.com/cdysthe cdysthe

            People who got the phone in an early beta wave got a single band phone. When RW discovered the error they offered a replacement program for the ones that didn't know it was a single band.

  • P.Robbiethe1

    This is awesome!! Just to make sure this will work with the new dual band DEFY they are coming out with later this month right?

    • http://twitter.com/TeamAndIRC Justin Case

      No idea.

    • http://twitter.com/cdysthe cdysthe

      Works great on the dual band Defy

  • http://www.facebook.com/sonofaglitch Allen Gee

    Nice bloody work!

  • Elliot

    Justin, do you know of a way now to discover the SPC/MSL for this device?

  • Christopher Mancini

    Typo adb:
    abd shell chmod 755 /data/local/cruelintents.sh

  • pr

    Works perfect. Good work Justin Case.

  • Brandon Watkins

    so just to be clear....after i root this all i have to do is flash a custom recovery like twrp, then i can flash custom roms from XDA? like the ones for normal Motorola defy xt ?

    • rw

      no there are no ROMs that currently support rw's built in WiFi calling

    • I Hate Idiots

      I hope you brick your phone and Republic cancels your account.

      • obama

        I hope you get shot in the head

  • http://twitter.com/cdysthe cdysthe

    Since Republic Wireless is in beta an plan at least one major OTA update which will be required for the phone to work correctly is there a way to reverse the rooting in case the OTA won't work on a rooted phone?

  • ahmed

    did all that successfully, when I ve tried it on a terminal client I found out that i am still not rooted

  • Acefspds

    I may be a complete idiot but is there a video that shows this step by step? This might as well be in French.

  • SteveC

    Will this procedure work for rooting other Android phones with other carriers?

  • Alec

    This doesn't work as of the new OTA update; it gives a permission denied error when you try to chmod.

  • 3ricss0n

    Now would there be a way to unlock the bootloader that way we can at least try to unbrick our phones if it were to happen?

  • Tom Jenny

    this was so easy and simple to do, would like to donate for your work. Please advice.

  • krazies

    does anyone know where to find the sbf or how to fix a boot loop... rooted w cyanide then tried to install SndInit via apk and then it just bootloops... anybody know??

  • fritz

    can somebody give me step by step instructions on how to do this please

  • bvain

    this worked for my xt555c or Motorola defy xt(c) using straight talk service providing sprint as the carrier. only i had to download the latest version of ADB to get it to root permanently. thanks a million OP as i have been trying this to no avail since i got the phone! just download the zip file and copy/past into command the supplied commands above. just have the latest ADB in the same dir that the zip file is extracted to and 2 minutes later SUPAUSAAAAA

    • shaker3000

      I also have the straight talk defy xt555c and mine is rooted also been good for 3 months now

  • http://www.facebook.com/corri.conner Corri Conner

    Thank you so much!!!!!

  • bhushan n

    works perfectly fine...just verified on my xt535

  • Todd Perry

    Does not work. They do not tell you how to point it to your device.