I recently found myself in quite a sticky situation with no internet access (or the ability to set up traditional FIOS/cable access), two weeks to go before I could afford unlimited mobile, and while FoxFi would have proved to be a decent solution in an isolated environment, I couldn’t seem to shake off hitchhikers who would make my data usage skyrocket, leaving me worried about losing my cell phone service for over-usage of my mobile data (and FoxFi’s WPA2 password function didn’t, well, function). Thus the only solution I found left was to root my LG Optimus Extreme (model# LGL40G/L40G) and utilize a wifi hotspot/wifi tethering app that was Android ICS 4.0.3 friendly and designed to take advantage of superuser mode. This actually turned out to be a lot harder than I thought it was going to be, partially due to obscurity, partially due to the information I needed being scattered to the four winds in bits and pieces here and there, and partially due to poorly written guides (sorry folks, thank you for pointing me in the right direction at least, but I did kill several hours on some pretty dumb things like hard resetting just because all the available guides got the process dead wrong).
So here is my complete how to/tutorial on all things wifi hotspotting/wifi tethering with the LG Optimus Extreme (LGL40G/L40G) with Android ICS 4.0.3, right down to rooting this phone if need be and getting wifi hotspotting/wifi tethering going with superuser access. I have taken as much care as possible to make all the steps easy to follow and accurate. Please make a backup of your data before embarking on this journey. Also note there are currently (to my knowledge) no ROMs available for the LG Optimus Extreme (LGL40G/L40G) as of yet, so rooting is purely for the purpose of gaining administrative access for the usage of superuser apps.
Wifi Hotspotting/Wifi Tethering Without Root
This is the easiest method of creating a wifi hotspot/wifi tether for your LG Optimus Extreme (LGL40G/L40G), though you will not get as many configuration options with this as you will with the rooted method, and the application will also cost you approximately $7 if you want to bypass the daily data limit. Please note that the WPA2 password option may not work on your phone. If this is the case, you will have use the rooted method to utilize password protection on your wifi hotspot.
- Go to http://pdanet.co/android. Install the application from either listed link (try the second link if your carrier has blocked the first one). If you choose to add a password to your wifi hotspot, make sure to rename the hotspot after setting the password.
- Purchase Foxfi if you want to use more than the daily data allowance.
- For added security, you can additionally install the Foxfi addon, which will allow you to use a proxy server to mask the devices you use to connect to the wifi hotspot.
Wifi Hotspotting/Wifi Tethering With Root
This is the most difficult method of creating a wifi hotspot/wifi tether for your LG Optimus Extreme (LGL40G/L40G), but it will give you the most configuration options and also costs nothing (although the app’s developers do welcome donations, and I suggest tossing at least $5 their way if you find this to be a quality app as I have).
- Just a quick reminder once again to backup your data! This method will involve resetting your phone, which will wipe it clean of all stored data such as contacts, media, photos, etc.
- Download Bin4ry’s rooting package here. You can use your phone to download it if need be, then connect your phone via USB to your computer with the “LG software” option selected in the usb mode menu and browse to internal storage>downloads to find the package and move it to your desktop.
- Extract the package to your desktop.
- Make sure you have the USB drivers for your phone installed before moving any further. You can download them here.
- Hold the volume down, home, and power buttons simultaneously (all at once), then let go of the power button only. You should see the Android bot show up on your screen with some gears for a few seconds, and then your phone will reboot. When it reboots, it will have reset, and you will have to go through the setup process like you did the day you first turned it on. Don’t set up any accounts, just skip through all of that by clicking “Later”. This isn’t the last reset you’re going to go through before we’re done, so any account setups are going to be wasted effort.
- Go to settings>developer options and select “usb debugging”.
- Connect your phone to your PC via usb. Don’t change the usb mode from charging only.
- Double click on the executable bat file you extracted on to your desktop (not the sh file), and type in 1 for your selection before pressing enter. Follow the command prompt based instructions. Make sure to note this command prompt based application will tell you directly if rooting was successful, if not, it will just continue to hang, i.e. it leave you in the dark forever and never tell you anything new. You may have to run this a couple of times before it tells you the rooting process is a success.
- Once you’ve successfully rooted your phone, you will need to go through the setup process again. Go ahead and get your accounts set up now if you wish… there will be no more resets after this.
- Now you will need to install a superuser application to setup permissions for the wifi hotspotting/wifi tethering app. I like to use ClockworkMod’s Superuser, but there’s tons of apps in the Android Play Market that will work, including one that comes stock with Bin4ry’s rooting process.
- Go to settings>security and check off the option to allow the installation of applications outside Android’s Marketplace.
- Download the Wireless Tether for Root Users v3.3 beta app here and install it. As of the date of this article (08/28/2013), this is the oldest version of this application that has been capable of activating the wifi on my LG Optimus Extreme (LGL40G/L40G).
You should be good to go from here. Default settings work great on this phone, although you may find you need to tweak them a bit for your specific configuration, such as opting to have the application keep the connection alive by sending a few small packets of data at regular intervals.