Samsung PIT Files | Explained

by | January 6, 2020

Samsung PIT files – you would have come across these files if you have ever tried manually flash the stock firmware on your Samsung device. When you try to find more information about installing stock firmware on your Galaxy, you will again encounter these words. Almost every single discussion/guide/thread regarding Samsung Firmware also discusses these “PIT files”. If you are beginner, here are a few questions that you might have:

Samsung-PIT-Files
  1. What is a PIT file?
  2. What does it do?
  3. Do all Samsung Firmware have same PIT file?
  4. Where can I find the Samsung PIT file?

In this article, we have tried to provide an answer or clarification to all the questions you might have regarding Samsung PIT files in the simplest way possible.

What is a PIT file?

PIT stands for Partition Information Table. These are files that are part of Samsung Firmware which contain partition tables information (such as system partition, data partition, etc) for your Samsung Galaxy Android phones. The Samsung PIT files metadata such as Partition Name, Block Size, Block Count, and other technical information for every partition on a Samsung Galaxy device. Not all the devices have the same PIT file, rather, every Samsung Galaxy device has a different PIT file associated with its stock firmware. And that is why it is important to have the right PIT file in order to flash the stock firmware on your device. If there are two different versions of a particular model, say 128 GB and 512 GB, then each of them will have a different PIT file.

What does the PIT File do?

ROM (Read Only Memory) on an Android device is similar to a hard disk on a computer where the information is kept permanently unless modified by the user. Samsung PIT file will re-partition the ROM of your device when used into these sectors:

  • PBL
  • PIT
  • EFS
  • SBL
  • SBL2
  • PARAM
  • KERNEL
  • RECOVERY
  • FACTORYFS
  • DBDATAFS
  • CACHE
  • MODEM

Samsung PIT files – Some Common Misconceptions

There are several occasions when I come across users who are trying to flash the stock firmware on their Samsung device for the first time but are very confused about the whole ‘PIT file’ concept. As we have mentioned before, there are some models that have more than one PIT file and beginners will have the question – Which one to use? For example, below is a list of PIT files available for a Galaxy device.

s1_odin_20130228.pit
s1_odin_20140701.pit
s1_odin_20151021.pit

So, when the user raises the ‘Which PIT file to use?’ question, some would suggest using the ‘512’ PIT file and others would recommend using ‘513’ PIT file and then some would warn to stay away from the ‘803’ PIT files. But what do these numbers really mean? Those numbers represent the date when a particular PIT file is created.

20130230 > 2013-02-28  (28th February 2013)
20140701 > 2014-07-01  (01st July 2014)
20151021 > 2015-10-21 (21st October 2015)

I have absolutely no idea why a particular user recommends a particular PIT file. That said, you can use any PIT file you want (provided they are for your own device) and it will not make any difference.

PIT File Facts

  1. Changing a pit file is only a ROM space trade operation between ‘/system’ partition and ‘/dbdata’ partition, nothing more. If there are three PIT files for your device, you can use any of the three and it would not make any difference. I would recommend using the latest one if there are more that one PIT file. The amount of memory allocated to the partitions mentioned above is the only difference. For example, one PIT file will allocate 100 MB to ‘/system’ partition and 90 MB to ‘/dbdata’ partition. The other will allocate 95 MB to ‘/system’ partition and 95 MB to ‘/dbdata’ partition.
  2. A Samsung PIT file plays no role in the performance of a device. It does does not make it better or worse. While ‘/dbdata’ partition is not used for more than keeping settings and browsing cache, ‘/system’ partition is a read-only partition on all pit files. Therefore, the small space tradeoff between the two will virtually have no effect on the performance.
  3. There is no explanation (that I know of) as to why there is a space tradeoff between ‘/dbdata’ partition and ‘/system’ partition between different PIT files.

I hope this helped clear all your doubts with respect to Samsung PIT files.

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An engineer by day and a blogger by night, Vish is passionate about all things tech. His day starts with a hot cup of coffee and a few crunchy bytes of tech news and ends with him falling asleep in front of his laptop while authoring tech content, with F.R.I.E.N.D.S. playing in the background.

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