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Upgrade Motorola Defy to Android 4.0.3 ICS via CyanogenMod 9


Published onMarch 26, 2012

The Motorola Defy is just one of the many smartphones that is eager to receive the Android 4.0.3 Ice Cream Sandwich update. If you’re one of the owners of the Motorola Defy, waiting for the official ICS upgrade can be frustrating, especially since Motorola has decided that the Motorola Defy will remain on Android 2.2 Froyo.

Fortunately, you can still update to Android 4.0.3 Ice Cream Sandwich using non-Motorola way: CyanogenMod 9.  The unofficial upgrade is a super fast custom ROM jampacked with all the neat Ice Cream Sandwich features that you will surely love.

However, this ROM is still in its current beta stages with some minor bugs that you might find annoying. But, this is one of the stable ICS builds that hosts improvements such as better features and stability when it comes to performance. Rest assured that the bugs found on the current version of this ROM is addressed by the developers promising new updates and fixes every now and then in the form of nightly builds.

You might want to try your luck with the CyanogenMod 9 Ice Cream Sandwich ROM.


  • Rooted Motorola Defy with ClockworkMod Recovery installed
  • Fully charged battery or at least 70% battery left
  • Backup of your personal phone data
  • Download the following and save the files to your computer:
    • latest CyanogenMod 9 nightly build for the Motorola Defy — Download
    • GApps (Google Apps) package — Download
    • CM7 (froyo) Kernel — Download


  1. Connect your Motorola Defy to your PC via USB cable.
  2. Copy the downloaded ZIP files to the root of your phone’s internal SD card (i.e., /sdcard).
  3. Disconnect your phone from your PC.
  4. Switch off your phone.
  5. Press the Power button.
  6. Your phone will start up and display the Motorola logo.  Wait until you see the blue LED light up.  When it does, press the Volume Down button to enter bootmenu.
  7. In bootmenu, use the Volume keys the highlight “Recovery”.  Press the Power button to select it.  Then, select “Custom Recovery” to enter ClockworkMod Recovery.
  8. Once inside ClockworkMod Recovery, go to Backup and Restore > Backup and create a Nandroid backup of your current system.
  9. Select “Wipe Data/Factory Reset” and confirm the operation on the next screen.
  10. Select “Install zip from sdcard.”  Browse for and select the CynogenMod 9 package that you copied to the phone earlier.  Confirm that you wan to flash the package.
  11. Repeat step 10, but this time choose the CM7 kernel package.
  12. Repeat step 10, but this time choose the GApps package.
  13. Return to the main menu of ClockworkMod Recovery.
  14. Select “Wipe Cache” and confirm the action on the next screen.
  15. From the Advanced menu, select “Wipe Dalvik cache” and confirm the action on the next screen.
  16. Return to main recovery menu.
  17. Select “Reboot system now.”

Congratulations! You have successfully installed Android 4.0.3 Ice Cream Sandwich on your Motorola Defy via the latest CyanogenMod 9 custom ROM nightly build.

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