Since waiting for samsung to eventually put touchWiz on an ICS rom, and then release the updates for the Galaxy s 2, is kind of a boring long wait.

This is for you, if you would rather try out ICS right now, but can’t afford a Google Nexus phone, or don’t see any reason why you should update if you already own the Galaxy S 2

The CyanogenMOD team is working hard on their 9th version, and one of the devs, codeworkx, has been putting together experimental builds and fixes daily since right after christmas.

Not everything is in place yet, as this is an early experimental build (alpha), and lots of bugs remain to squash, but I have tried the rom, and it is actually quite good and stable for being an alpha! So, depending on your needs, you can actually use this as your daily rom, like I currently do.

This guide assumes you already have some knowledge about flashing roms, and it is recommended to have a working ClockWorkMod, like the version that comes with CyanogenMOD 7.

I am not responsible for anything that happens to you or your phone if you decide to try this.

(Problems can be discussed in the IRC channel linked in the xda thread, or here)

Installation instructions

The whole thread and download links can be found over at xda here.

Im just going to summarize the procedure:

  1. Copy GApps, Faceunlock and CM9 ZIPs to your internal SDCard
  2. Boot into Recovery
  3. Flash the CM9 zip
  4. Flash GApps and Faceunlock ZIPs
  6. Reboot

I was using CyanogenMOD 7, with CWM, and using the 01032012 build (january 3, 2012), I could flash the ROM directly, without having to use a ICS bootloader, which you had to use with the earlier builds.  I also flashed the XXKP8 Modem right after the GApps and facelock zips, but it is said to be not neccesary. I did not need Odin for anything during this procedure.

These steps worked fine. Although there are a couple of quirks you may stumble upon…

Quirks and stuff

Including this list of bugs, heres a list of different quirks, and solutions, that is not present in the post on the front page:

  • If Google maps is giving a “Login failed” message, you have to give it permissions (it should pop up from the notification bar), this has to be done 3 times (for 3 different permissions). You may have to exit and re-launch the app many times for this to work. It took me 5 minutes before I got it working.
  • If none of the Google apps gets installed, besides GMail, you can download them from the market
  • To make app installation easier, try logging in to in your desktop browser, and install apps directly onto your phone.
  • If the scrolling in menus is sometimes lagging, you can fix this by going to: Settings -> Developers option -> Force gpu rendering
  • If you later decide to update the rom to a newer build, you just need to flash the rom, GApps and the facelock zip, then wipe cache, you do not need to flash the modem again.
  • The newer builds can be flashed from newer versions of CWM, ICS bootloader is not needed.
  • If the phone gets hot, or dont want to go to deep sleep, you have to kill the media and google services: On the home screen, press the menu button -> Manage apps -> And stop the media service.
  • To transfer files, if the Media Transfer Protocol doesn’t work, you can use Droid Explorer to transfer files.
  • Taking screenshots on the device is a little weird… Hold down the power button for about 1 second, then you get the menu, choose screenshot.