[How to] Update Galaxy S I9000 to Android 4.4 KitKat with CM11 AOSP ROM

It just feels celebrations when a favorite gadget of yours from the past gets the advancements of modern day technology. The Samsung Galaxy S, the first smartphone of the now famous Galaxy S series by Samsung, is the device I began learning to customize Android devices beyond the official ways. It was Android 2.2 back in that time when I first rooted my Galaxy S.

Anyway, the Samsung Galaxy S yesterday received an unofficial CyanogenMod 11 (aka CM11) build. The CM11 ROM is based on the latest Android 4.4 KitKat update by Google. Samsung stopped updating the device a long time ago, the Android 2.3 was the last update that booted officially on the Galaxy S.

Various updates to Android that followed Android 2.3 — Android 4.0, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3 and now the 4.4, were never supported by Samsung for the Galaxy S, but the great community of users and independent developers have still kept the device rocking.

You can install Android 4.4 KitKat update on your Galaxy S by following our step-by-step guide below, but before that have a look at the bugs/issues present in the CM11 ROM


As of November 14, 2013, following bugs were present:

  • Display issues in Browser (Google Chrome Browser works fine)
  • No access to TV-Out menu
  • Layout issues in lockscreen
  • Can only mount 1 sdcard on PC (either external or internal)
  • Menu soft-buttons appearing where they shouldn’t
  • Some CyanogenMod features are missing
  • Color calibration does not get saved

Other than the bugs listed above the KangBang ROM is working fine.

Let’s see how to install the Android 4.4 KitKat CM11 ROM on your Samsung Galaxy S I9000


Warranty may be void of your device if you follow the procedures given on this page.

You only are responsible for your device. We won’t be liable if any damage occurs to your device and/or its components.


To make sure your device is eligible with this, you must first confirm its model no. in ‘About device’ option under Settings. Another way to confirm model no. is by looking for it on the packaging box of your device. It must be GT-I9000!

Do not use the procedures discussed here on any other Galaxy S (including the Galaxy S devices at Sprint, Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile) or any other device of Samsung or any other company. You have been warned!


You must do this pre-installation stuff before attempting to install the ROM on your Samsung Galaxy S in order to avoid any complications later, and have a smooth and successful process.


Back up important data and stuff before you start playing around here as there are chances you might lose your apps and app-data (app settings, game progress, etc.), and in rare case, files on the internal memory, too.

For help on Backup and Restore, check out our exclusive page on that linked right below.



If your android device powers off due to lack of battery while the process is underway, it could damage the device.

So, make sure your device is adequately charged — at least 50% battery of the device.


If you haven’t used a custom recovery, either CWM or TWRP, before, to install a .zip file of a ROM on anything else, then we suggest you first watch a video of that, given right below, to get familiar with the process.

Just fyi, the video below shows installing a .zip file (of recovery) on Galaxy S3, but it doesn’t matter as the process remains exactly same. So, once you are finished with video, jump to downloads and step-by-step guide below.



Download the files given below and transfer them to a separate folder on your phone and remember the location.

  • Android 4.4 KitKat update – CM11 ROM file: DOWNLOAD LINK
    File name: cm-11-20131115-UNOFFICIAL-galaxysmtd.zip (396.32 MB)
  • Gapps file (art compatible): DOWNLOAD LINK
    File name: gapps-kk-20131111-artcompatible.zip (103.05 MB)

Reminder: Before you proceed, make sure you’ve transferred the files you downloaded above to a separate folder on your Samsung Galaxy S phone.


Make sure you have backed up your phone adequately (including important data stored on internal memory).

NOTE: If you’re running CM9/CM10 or CM10.1, it’s It’s recommended to update to CM10.2  first before flashing CM11 following the guide below. Otherwise, you may get ‘set_metadata_recursive‘ error during installation.

  1. Boot into recovery mode. For this:
    • Power off your device and wait for 5-10 seconds until the device is fully switched off.
    • Press and hold  Volume Up + Home + Power buttons together and release them as soon as you see the Galaxy S logo.
      └ In Recovery mode, use Volume buttons to navigate Up and Down between options and use Power button to select an option.
  2. Create a Nandroid Backup from recovery. It’s optional but very important to do, so that in case something goes wrong you can restore to current status easily. For making a Nandroid Backup, go to Backup And Restore » Backup.
  3. Perform a Factory Reset (This will delete all apps and their settings and game progress). For this:
    • Select Wipe data/Factory reset, then select Yes on the next screen to confirm factory reset (screenshot)
  4. First Install the ROM file (cm-11-20131115-UNOFFICIAL-galaxysmtd.zip):
    • Select Install zip » Choose zip from sdcard (or external sdcard, you know where your files are) » browse to the location where you saved the file and select the ROM file cm-11-20131115-UNOFFICIAL-galaxysmtd.zip
  5. Now similarly flash the gapps-kk-20131111-artcompatible.zip file.
    └ Make sure to first flash the ROM file and then the Gapps file.
  6. Reboot your device. For this, go back to the main menu of recovery and select reboot system now.

That’s all. Your phone will now reboot and it will take some time as it’ll be phone’s first boot after installing Android 4.4, be extremely excited for this!

Note: In case your device gets bootloop (stuck at logo while rebooting), just do a factory reset (step 3) and you will be fine.


It was easy to install Android 4.4 KitKat, right? Let us know how it tastes on your Samsung Galaxy S 😉

Your suggestions and queries, if any, are most welcomed!

Via XDA (pawitp)

  • 1351 Posts
Shivam is our resident designer and web developer who also enjoys writing. He loves to meditate, drive on the freeways and hunt for snipers during his Call Of Duty playtime. Email: shivam@theandroidsoul.com
  • rabs

    The Android Phone which started the android boom refuses to die 🙂

    • Dusan Mihajlovic

      SGS i9000 never die

  • omar

    what should i do ?

    • Flash CM 10.2 first and then try flashing CM 11 again. That should resolve the issue

      • Puru

        I am still getting the recursive error even after upgrading to 10.2 and flashing this… Any help?

  • cubenate

    i still have mine as well plus galaxy note 2

  • original.cassi

    Installed from yesterday. Until now satisfied. RAM usage very good, better than on 2.3.5. If anything unaccepted I will update my comments. Thank you very much for your work

  • original.cassi

    First significant remark: when incoming call, and if accidently pushing back button, you will loose possibility to answer the call. Back button should be inactive during incoming call.

  • original.cassi

    Besides the browser there are some display issues also in email (gmail and corporate account).

  • birreh

    Maybe a dumb question, what if i do this with I9001 S Plus?

    • Gavin_Gadget

      It will brick

  • Albert Dominic

    Nice work guys. how do i get the ScreenShot option on my Power Menu.?

  • deepak

    Hi mate – Need your help. I used https://www.theandroidsoul.com/xxjw4-root-and-clockworkmod-recovery-for-galaxy-s/ for rooting my GalaxyS GT i9000

    Followed all steps exactly the way you mentioned. When I executed step 4 the phone restarted and says

    CWM based recovery v6.0.4.4
    Waiting for SD card to mount (20s)
    Installation : grep

    finding update package
    E: unknown volume for path grep
    E: can’t mount grep
    E: unknown volume for path
    Installation aborted !

    And this is like a loop where the phone keeps on rebooting and then showing above message

    please can you help asap.

    • deepak

      To let you know – I saved the 2 files (ROM and gapps) locally on phone in a separate folder and also in the sD card.

      I chose the files I saved on device when I executed step 4.

      • Deepak

        success !!

        i just removed the battery to get rid of that loop and see if can start the phone using the Vol up+Home+Power button to go to same cWM menu, and I could !!!!

        So this time I chose to install the ROM file from external sd card and guess what ? it worked flawlessly. Then as described in step 5, i installed gapps from external sd card and that worked too.

        so I would think that the reason why the device couldn’t find/mount the same files located on internal drive was something to do with the partition of file format etc.

        Hence as a suggestion, i would request you to add this point about using external sD card to save files or have it saved on both internal drive and external drive as I did. it might benefit someone experiencing the same issue.

        many thanks! Phone just showed the home screen and i am excited.

  • Deepak

    Hello there – How can I take screenshot on GTi9000 after updating it to 4.4 Kitkat?

    With original ROM it used to be the back and home button being pressed together but not anymore

    Please can you help ?

    • Use ‘Volume down + Power’ button for taking screenshots.

      And btw, thanks for all your feedback 🙂

  • gizmoddict

    Nice Tutorial. If anyone needs more help, I have a video tutorial of this process too.Check it here http://youtu.be/FBFtVvbRGN0

  • jicy

    there is no option to edit status bar,nav bar panels.i would like to add tiles to my status bar..

  • mohammad

    plz help me…


    E : Short write of /tmp/sideload/package.zip (no spase left on device)

    installation aborted

    What should I do

  • phantombeam

    please help, i can’t find my WI-FI signal on my phone after flashing this

  • UberUltimate

    I’m currently downloading the ROM and the Google Apps. Will flash the ROM after downloading. Let’s see if this installation method works

  • Sunnlake

    ?Hello, can’t get my Galaxy Si9000 into recovery mode, tried the above procedure several times already, pls help

  • Curt

    It looks like the video is from https://www.theandroidsoul.com/samsung-galaxy-s3-clockworkmod-recovery-cwm-downloads-guides-videos#cwm-m5 under “Yet another method… Using another custom recovery”.

    According to https://www.theandroidsoul.com/samsung-galaxy-s3-clockworkmod-recovery-cwm-downloads-guides-videos#cwm-m5 :

    “…you need a custom recovery already for this, which is already quite a task. And that also means, you must be having a TWRP recovery, or an older CWM recovery…”

    How do I install TWRP or CWM onto my Galaxy S GT-I9000 (Android 2.1) if I do not have a custom recovery already? (Cannot find ROM Manager or GooManager on “Market”)