Rooting the Cincinnati Bell Blaze (Commtiva Z71) + custom ROMs

Necessary software:
This file contains:

Z4Root apk (z4.apk)
com.koushikdutta.rommanager_v4.3.3.0.apk (RomManager compatible with Android 2.1)
RomManager.apk (v - compatible with Android 2.2+) (unzip to desktop (Win only) and run setup.exe to install)

2 folders
2.2 -
jellybean => JellyBean_Dalvick_Phone.nb0
cyanogenmod 6 =>

2.3 -
cyanogenmod =>,
SuperAOSP =>

To root the Cincinnati Bell Blaze (Commtiva Z71), install the z4root app via sdcard. Click the root button and let it do it’s thing. Viola – you have a rooted device. It will reboot and install the SuperUser app. Done with this step.

Assuming the Z71 is stock on Android 2.1, you need to install the rommanager apk that works with 2.1:
Install this through the sdcard.

Once installed, you can flash ClockworkMod Recovery on the device. After it’s flashed successfully, move the ROM of your choice to the root of the sdcard. One of the Z71’s we have wouldn’t run the latest cyanogenmod 7 stable release – it installed fine, but the touchpad simply didn’t respond at all. The other device installed it and worked fine, except the battery would drain (even at idle) at the rate of 10% per hour. Unacceptable. Pity, too, because the ROM was very cool.

The first device was then flashed with theAndroid 2.2 version of Firetrap JellyBean and is running perfectly with an unreal battery lifespan. Really. Unreal.

The second device (mine) was flashed to the SuperAOSP 8.6 rom (Android 2.3.4), and everything went smooth except the network connection couldn’t be made, nor could the wireless. To get around this, it had to be flashed to JellyBean, then to SuperAOSP. Everything works great now and the battery life, like JellyBean, is unreal. It’s far superior to the CM rom on this device.

Instructions after root and RomManager have been installed:

CyanogenMod 7:
Copy the AND the file to the root of the sdcard. From the RomManager app, choose Install zip from sdcard. Select to wipe data/cache, factory reset, wipe dalvik cache (if it asks you). It will boot into clockworkmod recovery and install the rom. Device will restart and you’re done. I understand that flashing other kernels will help with battery consumption, which was my only issue, but I elected to choose another rom.

Firetrap JellyBean:
You’ll need to install the SUTLR software on a Win machine. Boot your device into download mode – hold red button + vol up + power. When you get to a black system screen and it is polling every few seconds, you’re where you want to be. Start the SUTLR software, locate the .nbo file, and select to wipe/reset data and click Next. All done. ROM is now flashed and you’re running Android 2.2 Firetrap JellyBean. You could stay here and be happy with excellent battery life and stability.

SuperAOSP 8.6:
I had to flash the JellyBean rom before I could install this one. It doesn’t take a long time, so to be on the safe side, follow the JellyBean instructions before doing this one. Use rommanager to flash SuperAOSP from JellyBean and let it wipe and clear everything. All done. SuperAOSP is what I’m running and the battery differences from cyanogenmod are like night and day. I really dig it, and everything works like it’s supposed to. I have only a few minor criticisms of the rom, but they’re mostly cosmetic and buried in the settings menus.

Adding more as I find out…

* Update 01.06.2012 *
Battery life is impressive. I’m not on my phone all day, but I get exchange email, gmail, sms,  mms, make/receive calls, and surf the web without moderation.