How to install ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich) on Samsung Galaxy SL i9003

If you're the owner of a Samsung Galaxy SL i9003 mobile phone, the bad news is that Samsung will not be updating it beyond Gingerbread 2.3.6 DDLF2 officially.

The Good news is, there are a lot of options to update it to Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean, though unofficially. Please note, updating this phone to ICS or JB will void your warranty as these are unofficial ROMs. In this article we will update the phone to Ice Cream Sandwich ROM called CyanogenMod 09 Alpha 12.

Before proceeding, you need to check what firmware version is your phone currently running. You can check the firmware version from this path:

Settings -- About Phone -- Build number
Or Dial *#1234# on your phone!

Short video review of the CyanogenMod 09

I suggest using XXKPE or XXKPH versions as the base which you can download from the links mentioned below.

Difficulty level: 
  • Easy
  • Medium
  • Difficult
What you would need:
  • Your i9003 (Dont try this ROM on any other phone)
  • USB cable (to connect to you PC)
  • Have the latest version of Samsung Kies (Only to have the latest USB drivers)
  • Internet Connection
  • Some Patience
Things to do before we start:

  • Take a full backup of your phone on your computer. (Pictures/Videos/Contacts/SMS/Music etc)
  • Disable all security suites installed in your computer.
  • Enable USB debugging on your Samsung Galaxy SL i9003 from the path "Settings -- Applications -- Development -- USB Debugging. The check box next to it should be ticked.
  • Disable all traces of Samsung Kies running on your computer from the task manager.

Step 1: Download the required ROM file and Google Apps files from the respective links mentioned below.

At the point of writing this article, the current version available is Alpha 12. Please check the latest version from XDA Developers i9003 page before you download it.

--> i9003XXKPE version: Download Link
--> i9003XXKPH version: Download Link
--> Ice Cream Sandwich ROM CyanogenMod 09 - Alpha 12Download Link
--> Google Apps for CM09Download Link

Make sure your phone is at least charged upto 60% of battery.

A short video tutorial on how to install Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0.4 on your Samsung Galaxy SL i9003

Step 2: Root your phone. (Click here to see how to root your phone)

Step 3: Copy the downloaded Ice Cream Sandwich ROM and Gaaps files to your External micro SD card.
Step 4: Power Off your phone and reboot into the Recovery Mode by pressing the Volume Up key + Center Home key + Power Key for a few seconds!
Step 5: Select install zip from SD card, Choose zip from SD card and select CM9 file.
Step 6: Wait for it to finish and then go to Advanced and Select Reboot Recovery.
Step 7: Wipe Data / Factory Reset.
Step 8: Go to Mounts and Storage and select Format dbdata.
Step 9: Repeat Step 6 with the Gaaps file that was downloaded earlier.
Step 10: Reboot

Congratulations, you have now successfully installed Ice Cream Sandwich/CyanogenMod 9 on your phone. Enjoy!