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Physical Extraction - EDL Method

EDL method is a way of extracting physical images from phones with Qualcomm chipsets. This option does not require the phone to be rooted and works on most of Qualcomm-equipped devices.

Every device has a specific way to enter EDL mode:

  • button combination

  • EDL cable

  • short test points

  • using the command “adb reboot edl”

  • and other

When in this mode, the device identifies itself as “Qualcomm HS-USB QDLoader 9008” in device manager.

How to

  1. On the main screen, select “Security bypassing”.

  2. Choose security bypassing approach.

By model

Select the exact device model from the list and choose “Get physical dump from EDL”. Follow on-screen instructions. If the device is not listed, try another approach.

By chipset

If the chipset is known, select it from the list. Then follow on-screen instructions.

By method

This is for cases where your phone or the chipset is not on the list of supported phones/chipsets for bypassing.

By choosing "Select custom programmer" you can try to search for a programmer by yourself, and upload the programmer to MOBILedit Forensic using “Select EDL programmer” and click the three dots. Then connect the phone in EDL mode, if the programmer is correct, a physical image will be extracted.

We recommend looking for a programmer for the phone you are investigating, however a programmer for a similar phone may also work.

There is no risk of data loss by trying different programmers.

Or you can select “Auto detect programmer” whereby MOBILedit Forensic will select some of the programmers that could work. If MOBILedit Forensic finds the correct one, a physical image will be extracted.

With the release of the MIUI 8.0 was the EDL access using the ADB command "adb reboot edl' suspended.

In some cases might also work ADB command "fastboot oem edl" for this you will need an unlocked bootloader.

Enter EDL mode through ADB command

It is possible to enter EDL mode through ADB command directly from within MOBILedit Forensic.

After selecting the EDL method and clicking next, you will be taken to the "Connect phone" screen, where you select "Direct connection (adb reboot edl)" in the "Connection" section. Then connect a live phone with ADB enabled. Click next.

Your phone will boot into EDL mode.

Additional help within MOBILedit Forensic

Where it is known to us that shorting of the test points is required to enter EDL mode and, we have previously tested that specific device, we have provided graphical instructions within the software to assist you. Below is an example of the location of the test points on a phone's printed circuit board assembly.

Additional sources

Additional articles about EDL and advanced methods:

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