Anyone Manage to Root The Free "Telstra Essential Plus" Aka Alcatel 1 (5033) ??

Anyone manage to root the free "Telstra Essential Plus" aka Alcatel 1 (5033)??

I've been trying with no luck. Tried Kingroot (PC & apk)& Pharmroot both fail.

Looked at installing Magisk, there is no custom recovery I could find and cannot find a boot.img online to patch.
Cant figure out how to get the boot.img from phone without root. Is there another way?

I mainly just want to get microG on the phone for privacy and the HUGE battery life improvement without Google play services.

Should I post this request on another forum?




  • +1 vote

    gsmhosting just updated Sigma v.2.30.01.

    a user posted success with unlocking a 5033.

    will give it a go in the next few days.

    • Hi buddy can you let me know how you went as I too have a 5033 that i need to unlock.

    • looks like you need to have the SigmaBox to use that software.

      if you can do it, please dump the boot.img and share.


  • found boot.img for 5033D on - no luck flashing the patch file in fastboot. also found a edited system.img to give root rights, booted ok, will test it out abit.

    just want to make sure the gsm bands all still work. will this be an issue? is there any way to test?

  • On the 5033T fastboot will flash only the system.img not the boot or recovery
    image,so Magisk or TWRP cannot be flashed via fastboot. Also to flash via SPflashtool for the MT6739 you now need a custom DA and Auth file for that phone.

    The downloaded edited 5033D system image will give you root access but install
    RootCheckerBasic app to check as sometimes the root access disappears.

    The phone modem is in the vendor.img partition and so should be unaltered as you
    have flashed the system.img partition only.Your bands should be unaltered. Install the MTK Engineering Mode apk and use the bandmode function to see the bands. (Phone Developer option must be on(Tap build number untill developer options appear)).

    Now that you have root access you can now network unlock the phone. Using ES File Explorer or Root Explorer. In the phone /vendor/protect_f/md you will see a file ST33_004. This file determines whether the phone is network locked.
    If you get this file from an unlocked phone and put it in place of the one
    in the locked phone the phone will be then unlocked and vice versa.

    Download the 5033A firmware from the Needrom site. From the download get the protect1.img (in another files). Download to your PC the Ext4Unpacker tool.
    Use the tool to extract the ST33_004 file from the 5033A protect1.img .
    This is the unlocked ST33_004.
    Using ES or Root Exp rename the existing ST33_004 in the phone as ST33_004bac
    and copy the new ST33_004 file into the directory. The phone will now accept
    non Telstra/Boost SIMs .

    Also download the Mobile Upgrade S Gotu2 v5.3.5 tool to your PC. This is the TCL(i.e.=Alcatel) official firmware upgrade tool. It replaces the firmware in
    your phone with the latest version on their server for your phone. For a stock
    phone it will upgrade to their latest stock version.
    For the 5033T+5033D 'hybrid' ,when started the tool appears to be downloading
    the 5033T firmware from the server, so it seems that the tool could be used
    to return the phone to stock, but this not tried or tested yet.

  • Wow…that’s seems to be a lot of work. I am waiting for my free 5033T to be unlocked as well…but can’t justify paying $14.99 getting it unlocked via eBay (and having to send it to NSW).

  • For these Alcatel based phones you can't just buy an unlock code for about $2 off
    Ebay like you could easily for a ZTE based phone. So you have to get the unlock
    code from Telstra or otherwise use a hardware unlocking tool. By the time you add
    postage each way the $14.99 Ebay unlock is probably going to cost you more like
    If you have a continuously active account for the phone Telstra state that they
    will sell you an unlock code for $25 after six months or free after two years.

    Also consider this: The locked Telstra phone will accept Boost SIMs but not Aldi,
    Woolworths,Lycamobile or SIM running on other networks, so it may be cheaper
    to run the phone on a Boost plan rather than a Telstra plan.

    The unlocking process I used may be a lot of work but I was unable to otherwise
    find a cheap,quick and easy way to unlock the phone.

  • guys…. i'll save you all the trouble.

    I have the hardware unlocker for this.

    I'll unlock for free for ozbargainers. if you are in sydney I work in the CBD so can do it during lunch. if you are interstate. you can minimize your cost by taking the battery out (i have my own battery to put in) and send it via a cd case which costs $2. and obviously a return postage stamp also $2 so $4 total.

    Im doing this for free for ozbargainers. no commercial quantities…

    • Wow! Sounds like a great public service! I’ll PM u now!

    • 👍 🏆

    • nice gesture

    • There is a system update for the phone available since this morning. The update will consistently fail to install if a non-Telstra SIM was present in an unlocked phone. Removing the SIM card before installing the update solved the problem for me.

      A noticeable improvement is the keyboard's swipe accuracy.

      • This didn’t happen for me. I had an Amaysim SIM card in it, the updated downloaded and installed. No issues.

        Also - a huge thanks to dabell for unlocking my 5033 phones.

  • I managed to Root and unlock the phone for Free

    With the assistance of this thread and rough01 and this link

    First I downloaded Alcatel USB driver from here

    And got the 5033D image file from here

    In Developer Options allow USB debugging and also OEM unlocking

    I used the following steps from here

    adb devices
    adb reboot-bootloader
    fastboot devices
    fastboot oem unlock
    fastboot erase system
    fastboot flash system system_new.img
    fastboot reboot

    This allows root access

    Then I got ST33_004 file using steps above.

    Got the 5033A image file from here

    Got the ext4 unpacker here

  • Note When I say "Then I got ST33_004 file using steps above", I'm referring to rough01 post here

  • I then obtained the Alcatel Mobile Upgrade S Gotu2 v5.3.5 tool from here

    and was then able to install the 5033T firmware.

    After that I tested with a non Telstra (Vodafone) SIM and had no issues

  • The Vodafone Smart E9 4G and the Optus X Start appear to be Alcatel 5033 variants.
    Therefore it seems likely that the unlock method(s) in this thread could possibly
    be used to unlock them but this has not been tried and tested as yet.

  • The Boost Reo is a 5033T variant and is unlockable with the ST33_004 file method
    also. In fact this unlock method was developed on a Boost Reo rather than the Telstra version of the phone.


  • If you have already upgraded to build 03003, you will also need to downgrade the vendor image to use that Russian rooted system image.

    The bootloader won't allow you to flash anything other than system, but gotu2 will if you switch the files before starting Step 3.
    As a bonus, you don't need to use oem unlock.

    I took a more automated approach, I tweaked the vendor init.modem.rc to replace ST33_004 just before this line:
    restorecon_recursive /vendor/protect_f

    • How do you downgrade the vendor image?

      • The bootloader won't allow you to flash anything other than system, but gotu2 will if you switch the files before starting Step 3.

        The system partition is in y.mbn (zippped), the vendor partition is in q.mbn.

        Extract with simg2img and mount as a loop-back, repack with make_ext4fs.

        Tip: use Ubuntu 16 (not 18) in a VM.

        • Thanks for the response. Sounds all a bit too much for me though.

          When I looked into the downloads folder for gotu2 the are numerous files that I have no understanding of.

          And I only have Windows. No Ubuntu

  • Alcatel 1 (5033) - Network Unlocking for Dummies

    This whole process can be done directly on your phone in about 10 minutes, even if you have already upgraded to build 03003.
    No cables, flashing, bootloader unlocking or adb commands are required.

    • Download and install MediaTek Easy Root v1.0.2 (app-release.apk)
    • Download and install Magisk Manager v7.2.0 (MagiskManager-v7.2.0.apk)
    • Download and install ES File Explorer v4. (851) (ESFileExplorer_4.
    • Download ST33_004 file

    • Open MediaTek Easy Root:

      • Wait until you see the "Success! root access granted" message at the bottom of the screen (takes about 40 seconds to appear)

    • Open Magisk Manager:
      (WARNING: Do not update Magisk through Magisk Manager on a locked bootloader or you will brick your device)

      • When you open Magisk Manager you will immediately be prompted to install additional setup files. Do NOT allow this!
      • Do NOT allow it to install any updates.

    • Open ES File Explorer:

      • Open up the menu, scroll to the bottom, enable Root Explorer and Grant the Superuser Request when prompted.
      • Menu -> Local -> Download
      • Highlight and copy the ST33_004 file
      • Menu -> Local -> Device
      • Navigate to vendor/protect_f/md
      • Highlight the ST33_004 file and rename to ST33_004bac
      • Paste

    • Restart the phone
    • Insert SIM and it should now be unlocked
    • Important! Uninstall Magisk Manager so that you don't accidentally update it at some point and brick your device.
    • You can also uninstall ES File Explorer and MediaTek Easy Root if you want. Those are no longer needed.
    • Noice! You can also just use adb push to copy the ST33_004 and mtk-su then adb shell, start mtk-su, and copy the file into place.

      This also works for the Telstra 5059T 1X which has the exact same ST33_004 as the 5033T 1.

    • My phones are SIM unlocked thanks to dabell's offer, so I am only looking to root them. Does this MediaTek Easy Root give permanent root access? Or is there something else I need to do?

      • Yeah, nah.

        MediaTek Easy Root is basically just a gui wrapper around mtk-su.

        mtk-su gives you a temporary root + SELinux=permissive.

        You can use the temporary root+permissive to install Magisk or SuperSU, both with fairly major limitations.

        Even with root+permissive, you can not permanently modify boot, system, or vendor partitions.

        This means apps like Ad-Away can not update /etc/hosts.

        Yes, you can have root sort-of permanently. No, it does not allow you to do everything you want.

    • Thanks Mate…Successfully unlocked Telstra essential plus.

    • Thanks kamoi! Simple, quick and works! Instructions were clear and warnings were heeded!

    • Im getting the error message "failed to get root access, please try again" in mediatek easy root, can anyone please help me with this??

      • Ditto.
        My phone has a pending update to 03003. Is your already updated?

        Am trying the adb route. Trying to find a system image now … my Russian is rusty.
        bootloader is unlocked, stuck in fastboot.

        $25 to Telstra is starting to look cheap :-) (over 6 months old)

        • Yup mine is updated to 03003. Tried the adb method and it ain't working as well. Telstra's asking $80 for mine so it'll be back to the drawer ;)

      • I found I had to enable superuser access for ES File Explorer in the Magisk Manager app itself, prior to attempting to enable Root Explorer.

    • Worked well! Thanks! :)

    • Thnak you worked perfectly, can I update or will it revert to network locked?

      • I updated to build 04004 recently and it's still unlocked after :)

        • Hi Kamoi, I am trying the steps above but for some reasons I am getting an error while trying to install the ESFileExplorer. It says - can not open files of this type. I installed the other two apk’s alright. Any ideas why this might be happening? Thanks in advance!
          Btw - my phone has updated to 04004.

          Edit: I guess I figured out that I am not able to download the apk from the link. Looks like it has been moved? The tinyupload site says it’s 14MB but the downloaded file is only a few kB.

          Edit2: I managed to find the ES Explorer apk by googling for it. However, now I am getting the - Cannot access root error in the first step 🙁. Can someone please help? Thanks

          • @Dealking: I think it's been patched like it was on the Amazon Fire devices :(

          • @Dealking: @Deakling. There were 2 different file explorers that were
            able to be used for the root files. One is ES File Explorer, the other was Root Explorer. For whatever reasons, ES is not
            working for you, so I suggest that that you download and then install Root Explorer Apk. There seems to be a paid
            Pro version but the one I am talking about was free.

            • @rough01: @rough01 - Thanks for your response. I tried the root explorer, but I am not able to gain root access via the mediatek app itself.
              I will check if @jaduqimon’s offed is still valid 😀.

    • Thanks! the github links don't work but I found different versions and was still able to get a catch sim working in it :)
      Ya.. procrastinator

    • Sorry, can't upvote anymore, but thanks HomeAlone for this post.
      Such a simple procedure :-)

  • Looks so much easier to do it this way. Thanks for sharing.

  • A big shoutout to dabell!!! Unlocked our phones free of charge!

  • I managed to permanently root the Vodafone Smart E9 as below. Replaced ST33_004 file but it's still network locked. Any ideas?

    • chilee666
      The fact that you have been able to permanently root the E9 as per link
      indicates that the E9 is not a 5033T variant even though the 2 phones seem very
      similar, because the bootloader in 5033T cannot flash a boot image whereas you
      have been able flash the patched boot image using the bootloader on the E9.
      Given that 2 phones are most likely different, you probably would need the ST33_004 file from an already unlocked E9, not a ST33_004 file from an unlocked

      • @rough01
        You are correct. Managed to get the correct ST33_004. Download link below.

        • @chilee666
          So the E9 is now network unlocked ? . If it is, install the mtk
          engineering mode apk and use the bandmode function to check and set the bands required for the carrier of your SIM. I would select
          only those that you need. The default power-up on the 5033T was all bands on, the E9 may not be. Setting bands that your carrier
          doesn't actually use, seems to me to run the risk of possibly just
          increasing the standby battery consumption.

  • Watch out for the top volume button when removing the back cover. It catches on the plastic tab and ends up poking out.

    The Telstra shop changed the sim/ data over for my parents phone…and ripped the volume button off completely.

    They got an LG phone instead..worked out.

  • Bookmark 🤑😃👍

  • Anyone here know how to root the Telstra Essential Plus 2, model 5001T? Digging through a lot of spam online and haven't had much luck…

  • 18 months too late.. used the current version of MKT easy SU on my phone with firmware 11011. cant even get root:)
    oh well…
    awesome to those who managed to unlock.

    • I followed home alone's method 2 months or so ago, and that worked.
      I do think I used an updated version of the mediatek easy root.
      If I have some time, I'll check tomorrow.

      • Many thanks for the reply, Homealone's link to the MKT easy root is broken, hence i had to use the current version which seemed to have changed the name as well? (from easy root to easy SU?)
        anyway i downloaded the oldest version of MKT easy SU that i can find on github, v1.0.5, installed and when i press "#activate bootless root" , it just gave failed to root error

  • "Failed critical init step 1 returned 1"

    Android 8.1.0
    Kernel version 4.4.95
    Build Nr 09009
    Android security patch level 5 August 2020

    So updating is a bad thing here…

    • Flashing 5033A system_new.img caused bootloop..
      I then flashed AOSP 8.1 v32 courtesy of dsp26's post, that worked great, I was able to get root to update the ST33_004 file.
      Amysim sim card working in the phone now, pretty pleased.

      Thanks everyone!

      • Hi Tim,
        Thanks for the info, I noticed that there are many files in that releases, can you kindly tell me which one is for 5033T, please? Much appreciated!

        • This one: system-arm-aonly-gapps-su.img.xz

          • @tim_geo: Thanks heaps sir! I flashed that img but unable to find how to get root access. Would you mind to share where can I find it please? Ta

            • @Naphii: The su binaries are there already, you need a SuperUser app. I think the recommended one is the phh's SuperSU, although not on the playstore anymore. This or this might work, I can't remember where I got it from exactly, or try googling for another link.