Lenovo S920 Upgrade Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 with Gapps + Root

10 Jul 2014

Lenovo S920 Upgrade Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 with Gapps + Root – This guide is old issued, Lenovo S920 received Vibe UI v1.5 update about 2 month ago and still update until now. This guide is revision from my old post Upgrade Lenovo S920 Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 Vibe UI. Today i will posting the new guide on how to upgrade Lenovo S920 Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 with Gapps + Root, This is an official update from china so it only contains 2 languages CN and EN, and also has a lot chinese applications, but using this guide will will try to ROOT it, install Gapps (Google Apps) and remove this chinesse applications. Vibe UI v1.5 also release an OTA updates but when you follow this guide and change the system then OTA updates will not work anymore, So please consider it.

Disclaimer :
This guide for educational purpose only, We not responsible if your device bricked after following this tutorial.  (DWYOR). This is for Lenovo S920 4GB, if you have 8GB and have a guts to try this guide than please give me an info.

Lenovo S920 Upgrade Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 with Gapps + Root

Downloads :

Preparations :
  • Backup your current ROM, Use MTK Droid Tools for full backup your ROM. How to Make Full Backup For Mediatek Device
  • Backup your IMEI using MobilUncle MTK Tool.
  • Backup all your files, this guide will erase all your files save on your device.
  • If you never flashing your device, then please install MT65XX Preloader Vcom Driver to your computer first. Turn off your device and remove battery, connect your device to your computer. When your computer ask for a driver please point it to MT65XX Preloader Vcom Driver extracted folder. After finish installation process please look at My Computer ↦ Manage ↦ Device Manager ↦ COM (Port & LPT).
    Lenovo S920 Upgrade Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 with Gapps + Root

    After see like in the picture above, please disconnect your device. Move VIBEUI_V1.5_1427_ST_S920Gapps Minimal for 4.4.2Vibe UI Cleaner and KingUser v3.3.6 to your sd card, for easy organized please place in one folder. 

Lenovo S920 Upgrade Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 with Gapps + Root
  1. Installation Official Chinese ROM Lenovo S920
    • Extract S920_S141_130614, Then extract again another 2 folder target_bin.7z and S920????_20130312(v3.1304.0.119) ↦ this is a SP Flash Tool folder, if you found cannot run the Flash Tool.exe then download SP_Flash_Tool_v3.1304.0
    • Open SP Flash Tool folder, find Flash Tool and run it, if you using windows 7 try to run using administrator privileges. Please check DA DL All with Check Sum this is an important option please don’t forget it or you will finish with error on boot. Now click Scatter-Loading button to load the S920_S141_130614/target_bin/MT6589_Android_scatter_emmc.txt. It will load the rest needed files to flashing Lenovo S920. Then press Download button or hit F9, SP Flash Tool will begin do initializing process, wait until finish and getting stand by.
      Lenovo S920 Upgrade Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 with Gapps + Root
    • After finish, Please turn off your device remove the battery, SIM card, and SD Card. Connect your device using USB cable, when MT65XX Preloader Vcom Driver installation finish with successful, SP_Flash_Tool_v3.1304.0 will begin recognize your device and start the flashing process. This process will take like about 8-9 minutes, when flashing process already finish it will characterized by GREEN CIRCLE in the middle of SP_Flash_Tool_v3.1304.0.
      Lenovo S920 Upgrade Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 with Gapps + Root
    • Now you can disconnect your device, but please don’t turn it on.
  2. Installing Custom Recovery CWM v6.0.3.4
    • Extract CWM Recovery v6.0.3.4, it will contains 2 files, MT6589_Android_scatter_emmc and recovery.img. Actually you can also flash this recovery.img file using MobileUncle MTK Tool but it need ROOTED device, so we use SP Flash Tool method.
    • Open SP_Flash_Tool_v3.1304.0 again, check DA DL All with Check Sum please don’t forget about this option. Click on Scatter-Loading button and point it to CWM Recovery v6.0.3.4/MT6589_Android_scatter_emmc this will load recovery.img also. Now click Download button or press F9, confirm all warning and begin to recovery update process.
      Lenovo S920 Upgrade Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 with Gapps + Root
    • Connect your device again, Same like the last on turn off, remove battery, remove SIM card, and remove SD card. SP_Flash_Tool_v3.1304.0 will begin the recovery update flashing process, this process will just only take time about 1-2 minutes. Same like the last when it finish it will show GREEN CIRCLE in the middle of SP_Flash_Tool_v3.1304.0
    • Now you can disconnect your device, Put back the battery, SIM card, and SD card. But again please don’t turn on your device.
  3. Installing Vibe UI v1.5_1427
    • Go to recovery mode, press and hold Power Button + Volume Up + Volume Down until your device show recovery mode.
    • On recovery mode, Select Install zip from sdcard ↦ Choose zip from sdcard point to VIBEUI_V1.5_1427_ST_S920. CWM v6.0.3.4 will begin to update your device to Vibe UI v1.5_1427 this process will take time 2-3 minutes to finish.
    • When finish back to CWM v6.0.3.4 main menu and Select Install zip from sdcard ↦ Choose zip from sdcard ↦ point to Vibe UI Cleaner this process will remove chinese applications for Vibe UI v1.5_1427
    • Back to CWM v6.0.3.4 main menu and select Reboot System Now. When there is an option to Install SuperSu please select Don’t Install your device will reboot and enter to Home Screen.
    • On this step your are already successful Update Your Lenovo S920 to Android Kit Kat 4.4.2 Vibe UI v1.5_1427. Try to change the language setting to english, and enable the USB Debugging. you can dial ####537999# this will open Developer Settings.
  4. Installing Google Applications and Rooting
    • Go to recovery mode, press and hold Power Button + Volume Up + Volume Down until your device show recovery mode.
    • Select Install zip from sdcard  Choose zip from sdcard  point to Gapps Minimal for 4.4.2. Finish install google applications back to CWM v6.0.3.4 main menu
    • Select Install zip from sdcard  Choose zip from sdcard  point to KingUser v3.3.6
    • Back to main menu dan select Reboot System Now
  5. Installing Modem_V23 – If any problem with your signal, please do this step
    • Go to recovery mode, press and hold Power Button + Volume Up + Volume Down until your device show recovery mode.
    • Select Install zip from sdcard  Choose zip from sdcard  point to vibeui_modem_v23
    • Back to main menu and select Reboot System Now
  6. Finish – Now your Lenovo S920 already update with Vibe UI v1.5_1427 with Gapps and already ROOTED.
Read careful the step, This guide is long so please careful when you wanna to follow this guide. I hope this guide can solve some of your problem regarding Lenovo S920 and Google Applications. Please don’t hesitate to leave any comments if you got problems when follow this guide. Thank you for reading …
  1. Hi Mahmud, Andy

    Thank you so much guys. The tutorial is so helpful and Mahmud's experiments are awesome. I got my S920_ROW_8G recently. I am also planning for KItkat, but not sure about how to do it, until I saw your tutorial. Hope Mahmud would be able to merge built in storage to internal storage and share his feedback. The installation size of this ROM is a bit huge. Hope some one could release a light weight ROM like CM11…


    1. Hi Andy

      I am not able to see Mahmud's comments. They will be very useful for the other guys, who are planning for Kitkat. Can you pls restore his comments/feedback, otherwise update your tutorial including his experience.

      Mahmud can you pls share your feedback about your partition/merging.


    2. Yes i know, i inadvertent delete mahmud comments and the other 50 comments. So i cannot restore it.
      this Guide work for Lenovo S920 8GB, when you getting error while follow this guide try to press upgrade button instead download button.

      i hope my information can help you.
      thank you

    3. Hi Andy and Srikanth,

      Sorry…none of the attempt to repartitioning and merging the storage on 'S920 8GB ROW ROM' is successful! I do not know the reason. I tried both the methods explained in this blog like 'swaping the storage by editing the 'FSTAB' system file(http://www.androidrookies.com/2014/06/how-to-swap-memory-for-lenovo-s920.html) and editing the 'checksum.ini and Ebr2' method(http://www.androidrookies.com/2014/06/how-to-swap-memory-for-lenovo-s920.html). Also I tried to repartition using the tool 'Meteos MTK6589 ROM EDIT', but failed and stuck-up at booting the device. But I learned from all the attempts that once we have the stock ROM available on our PC, we need not worry as we can any time bring this phone to life by flashing the stock ROM using the FlashTool.
      Also I noticed that after this 'Vibe UI or Kit Kat 4.4.2' firmware update, the device shows the storage space occupied by OS as more than 4GB! But it is not correct. Once the in-built storage formatted, the OS occupied space shows as 1.08GB and in-built storage shows 5.20GB and that is static in my case.

      Those who desire to update their S920 8GB ROW ROM device with this tutorial can do it without any harm to their device, I believe so from my experience. What I did I explain here:
      I downloaded all the files and tools required from this blog only. My both PCs (WinXP and Win8.1) gave me error warnings when I pressed the 'Dowload' button on the Flashtool after scattering the files. All the time I opened options on FlashTool and made sure there is tick on USB mode Speed and clicked on Force HighSpeed, and also tick on 'DA DL All with Check Sum' then pressed on 'Upgrade'. Once the FlashTool detects the Device (Mediatek), it shows different color bars like Red, Blue, Grey, Yellow as progressing the process and finally the Green Round! Changing the USB ports on PC may also sometimes solve the FlashTool error.

      In order to get a clean installation first I flashed the 8GB ROW stock ROM, then the Chinese Stock ROM, then the Chinese custom recovery(CWM Recovery v6.0.3.4). For the CWM Recovery flashing I pressed the 'Download' on the FlashTool and it would popup a warning, but we can give 'Yes'. Once all the process over having put back the battery and switched on the phone copied all the required .zip file for KItKaT 4.4.2 update as explained in this tutorial and installed from the CWM recovery mode. My phone is working perfectly so far without any bugs. All thanks to 'androidrookies' and Mr. Andy.

      Thanks a lot,

    4. Hi mahmud,
      Thank you for you long comment and your brave experience, actually you are right once we have backup our ROM to our computer we don't need afraid something happen to our phone as long we do the right thing. For partition guide it between 4gb and 8gb ot use the different software, like mateos, if you wanna use mateos then you need to find mateos for 8gb same like and ebr2 and checksum, because 8gb and 4gb has different partition size. I hope you understand what i am saying here, lol

      Thank you for advance


    5. Dear Andy,

      Regarding the partitioning of the S920 8gb ROW, I googled for the Meteos MTK6589 8GB ROM EDIT tool and found somewhere. But when I tried with that, it also put the device to the bootloop! If you can guide me to a tool or software suitable for this phone, I will try and inform you about the results.
      To talk about the storage of this phone, after flashing the 8GB ROW stock ROM the total Internal storage showed more than 4GB (exact figure I don't remember) and available space more than 2GB and the Built-in Storage about 2GB as well which are almost the same as the device out of the box condition. After flashing the Chinese stock ROM, out of the total Internal Storage of around 4GB the OS occupied more than 3GB giving the available space around 800MB. The Built-in Storage remains around 2GB! Erasing the built-in storage did not change anything. But after installing the Vibe UI ROM the Total Internal Storage first showed around 5GB, from this the OS occupied more than 4GB and gave the available space around 600MB. The buil-in Storage about 1.55GB! But erasing the built-in storage from the phone itself changed the figures correctly and they are currently on my device as the total Internal Storage 2.06GB, OS occupied size 1.08GB and Available space around 800MB. But the Built-in Storage increased to 5.20GB! This much built-in storage is unwanted once we have external SD cards of our choice. If we can merge this built-in space to the Internal space, we do not ever want to be worried of the annoying popup of 'memory full/shortage'. But how…?!!!


    6. hi mahmud,

      I will try to make a guide about partition 8 GB phone, i cannot do that because i don't have 8GB phone and never used it so i am a little difficult if i wanna make it guide because i don't know it characteristic. But i will try it and i will told you when i can make one.
      The problem you has can be fix with 2 ways :
      1. Is to re-partition your memory, so phone storage will be merge into internal storage so it will make internal storage have bigger space. because as we know phone storage will be un-use while we have SD Card insert it.
      2. is using Link2SD, this required you to have class 10 SD Card, and 2 SD Card partition. So applications that used to install on internal storage will be move to install on 2nd SD Card partition, while the 1st SD Card partition will be use as usual. I never made a guide on how to use link2sd because i think lenovo phone does not need it, but after i see this i will try to make one and will get you to try it.

      That what i can do for you, but i need time to provide these 2 guides, so please be patience.

      Thank you

  2. Hi Andy,
    The good thing is that in this condition also we can move most of the downloaded apps to the Built-in Storage and save the Internal Storage space without using Link2SD etc.! If we make the External SD Card to be the Default Write Disk, we can move apps to it as well! Anyway, eagerly waiting for your another wonderful tutorial.

    1. Hi mahmud,
      Thank you for your comments i will make guide for the 8 GB devices and i hope that can solve your problems. Yes use link2sd and set default write disk to external is mostly same but a little different link2sd is like an adding our internal storage with 2nd partition sd card because 2nd partition sd card will be format as like out internal memory file system which is ext2. While default write disk is use fat32 for external disk. I hope you understand what i am write.

      Thank you


    1. Yes Srikanth, I had seen it. Flashing the ROM with modified EBR2 and Checksum.INI is described in this blog in a clearer and better way. I have tried that but without success. I think the XDA link you provided is also of the same and related to the 4GB version. Anyway, thank you for your interest in this regard and let's wait for Andy's guide to come up as he said!

    2. Hi mahmud,

      can you describe to me the step that you has been done when trying re-partition your Lenovo S920 8GB using Meteos MTK6589 8GB ROM EDIT, So i know when i making the guide i don't do the same step with you and make the guide does not work.
      You can explain it to email on [email protected] or you can contact me on hung out.


    1. Hi Syed,
      I did it on my S920 8GB ROW ROM(international version) phone successfully and it's working perfectly! This 'Vibe UI' cannot be installed directly on ROW ROM. As in the tutorial said, you have to flash first with the Chinese ROM and then the CWM Recovery Chinese. After that only you can install the Vibe UI (Kitkat 4.4.2) and other .Zip files from the CWM recovery mode successfully. Please explain the course of action you performed in flashing this update. Then we can find out what and where the wrong and why the error happened.


  3. Hi Srikanth & Andy,
    I have already installed this official KitKat 4.4.2 of 8GB ROW version. It has solved the storage problems of the device. This update gives the 8GB full phone storage without any other partitions. Out of this 8GB total storage 5.37GB is available for the data and apps! If an external SD card is mounted, the user will never ever have to be worried about the memory shortage problems.
    Now Mr.Andy think about rooting this ROM. 'Framaroot' is not working. How to install the CWM recovery? The Mobileuncle tool can update the recovery image or not? If yes, what about the Kinguser .zip file we used to root the Vibe UI. Can I we try that?
    Waiting for your reply.

    1. Hi,
      That become the old problem for the dev rooting ann install custom recovery on kitkat, for now i just know rooting kitkat rom using zip method for another method i still can not find it, if you install kitkat row version, as for i know ROW version firmware is already rooting and already has gapps on it. But i don't know about this one. Where you got it from,and how you install it on your phone. Please share it. Thank you

    2. Hi Andy,
      This official KitKat is not pre-rooted but the gapps is included in it. I knew about it from the above comment of Mr.Srikanth. My phone was on the Vibe UI installed as per your tutorial which will not notify about the official updates. So I reflashed back to the stock ROM of my phone using the Flashtool. Then in the settings I checked for the system updates and there I found S920_ROW_8G_S112_140519_TO_S9201_ROW_S220_140722 (700MB). I downloaded it and allowed the device to update it automatically. It solved the storage issues but the root access is not there which is badly needed. Please think of getting rooing method and CWM recovery installation for this. The Framaroot is not working!
      Thank you for your time.

    3. Hi mahmud,
      Like i say before most release row version is include with gapps, but for root i still not sure. But for root framaroot cannot work for android 4.4.2 for root you must use custom recovery for install it, but once you change system i am afraid update cannot be apply any more, so becareful

  4. Mahmud/Andy

    My battery is getting drained much faster than the jellybean. I am on kitkat now and would like to rollback to jellybean. The radio has been upgraded with kitkat and I suspect this new version of the radio is the cause of battery drain. Can I use SP flash tool to freshly install jellybean along with the older version of the radio?

    1. Hi,
      Yes you can. But if you can found the jelly bean with zip you can install it with zip method because you already had twrp on your device right?
      Maybe battery drain is because bug on kit kat, i think it need to be wait for another update

    2. Hi Srikanth,
      I have also upgraded to the official kitkat. But I do not see any changes pro or con in battery performance, it is still as good as it was with the JB. Once you have the stock ROM with you, any time you can go back to it via the Flashtool. I'm happy with this KitKat update as it solved the storage issues. The disappointing thing is that it is not pre-rooted so that certain apps cannot be used.

    3. Andy/Mahmud

      There is still some considerable battery drain, when compared to jellybean. Anyway I will wait for one more month for any subsequent patch from lenovo. The UI is also not so good. I am still on stock recovery. If you have some time, can you guys let me know the link for stock ROM and installation instructions.

    1. hi,
      are you using ROW or CN version ? if you using CN version try using VRoot or Root Genius to root your firmware, but the most effective to root is using custom recovery. I don't have guide to root kitkat yet but i will try to posting it later.
      For ROW version you must use custom CWM or TWRP if you wanna root it.

      thank you

  5. hi Andy,just one quick question,if i want to install other custom rom,did i need to flash Official Chinese ROM Lenovo S920 and custom recovery CWM everytime or i just reboot to recovery and make full wipe/cache and continue install new rom?

  6. im from row base and want to move to cn base. i tried above cn firmware flashed using flashtool but failed. how is the real process? do i need to hit upgrade firmware instead of download? because, i tried both of it and still got the error message. now im on mine row base again flashed use row firmware. i really want to try the cn firmware.

    1. Can you tell me error number you got. If you are got error 8038 then you must press firmware upgrade instead download button.
      Above guide on step 1 is the real process, load scatter file, press download or firmware upgrade button, turn off the phone, remove the battery and connect your phone without the battery.

    2. not copy and replace checksum.ini, replace the preloader with the preloader i give you on the above link and then move or rename checksum.ini. then repeat the step from 1 until finish.
      usually error code 4032 is because your device is produce on 2014. and look like it right your device produce in 2014

    3. i dont get it with "Then press Download button or hit F9, SP Flash Tool will begin do initializing process, wait until finish and getting stand by.", because there is nothing happen instead of it searching for something, so i connect with the usb cable, yes it detects the mediatec preloader usb, but then error pop out, same to firmware upgrade

    4. when pressing firmware-> upgrade or download button usually flash tool will preparing the files for flashing sometime it take some time but some time not. after pressing connect your device without the battery. and if it pop up an error then try to use firmware->upgrade. but if both got error code then try using flash tool v5.1352 you can download here http://adf.ly/qte3K, but if both flash tool still produce an error then i think you device cannot be modified

  7. Hello. I'm on Vibe UI 2.0, successfully flash the gapps and now rooted. But stuck with the signal problem. Still showing emergency calls only. Tried to flash all the v23 modem based on my firmware but still not working. Help me please. Thanks in advance and sorry for my bad English.

    1. Finally my phone is working as good as new. At first, I thought the same way as you. But after I recovered my IMEI, my phone 's signal still not working properly. So, I decided to re-flash back my CN stock rom, then re-install the VibeUi2.0, the GApps etc. then my phone's signal is working again. Better than before I guess. Thanks ya!

  8. hi andy,so….i have problem
    2 weeks ago i buy lenovo s920 from amazon from china,
    I'm on Vibe UI 2.0 upgrade, i read all ur comments and how need to fix my problem.
    problem is: after this upgrade stop working, gmail, google play service, 1st slot sim no network, 2nd slot sim is good like never, flash player no working, some games where i was before send and playing no more working, GPS no working, sametimes need wait about 3-10s if i need open address book.
    with imei is o.k.i done and send allot programs what u show on ur forum but….. none of them dont help me.
    ofcourse i think what im doing something wrong but 3times u cant do same mistake.so i disaided restore my phone.but….. first i wanna know is any chance is gonna happent same problem or no? what i need to do?
    sory for my english.

    1. Hi,
      I get your point, you upgrade with Vibe ui 2.0 and everything nkt working right? Vibe ui 2.0 is only available on china version firmware only no international version have Vibe ui 2.0. China version will not compatible with google applications and if you wanna have google applications on Vibe ui 2.0 you have to modified it your self, like above guide.
      To solve your probslem try using international ROM, you can see the guide here http://bit.ly/18s9nBy

  9. |
    Use uTorrent to GET THIS FILE now – its on USBVCOM and Flash Tool writing, so i presing them, but there traying install uTorrent, but i already have it. but nowhere else in this site cant find where i can download all this programs, maby need registered or what?

  10. at the end when i puch usb to my phone and pc at this moment when need wait green circle after 20s its writing unrecognized ROM detected and u must choose OK-Help-Report so i presing OK and nothing happens so? any ideas?

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