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January 28, 2012

Rooting the Samsung Galaxy Nexus

Filed under: Knowledgebase,Linux/Unix Related,Techie Stuff — Suramya @ 1:45 AM

A rooted android device gives you a lot of flexibility so one of the first things I did after I got back home was to root it using the following instructions (modified from Android Forums: [HOW TO] Root the GSM/HSPA+ Samsung Galaxy Nexus):

Note: I am assuming you are using Linux in the instructions below. If not then visit the link above for steps in Windows.

  • Download the Android SDK from here to a folder on your PC.
  • Power down your device
  • Connect the USB cable between the phone and your PC
  • Open a shell session
  • Switch to the directory where you downloaded the SDK (In my case it was Media/Downloads)
  • cd Media/Downloads
  • Extract the SDK Zip and switch to the new directory
  • unzip sdk-tools.zip
    cd sdk-tools
  • Make the applications executable
  • chmod a+x fastboot-linux adb-linux
  • Now, Boot your phone into fastboot mode by pressing and holding the volume-up AND volume-down AND the power buttons UNTIL you see the little green Android laying on his back with door on his chest open
  • Verify that fastboot can “see” your device
  • ./fastboot-linux devices

    You should see something similar to this:

    0146B5030B02100E        fastboot

    If you don’t see anything, try running the command as root.

  • Next we start the unlock process for the bootloader by issuing the following command. Keep in mind that this will completely wipe out all data from the phone so make sure you backup before running the command.
  • ./fastboot-linux oem unlock

    Confirm that you want the bootloader to be unlocked by acknowledging the warning message on the phone. (Please note that this will void your warranty). Use your volume rocker/keys to select the confirmation and press the power button to actually confirm.

At this point you have an unlocked bootloader and now we will start the rooting process.

  • Download the su.zip flashable root package
  • I had to manually copy the su.zip to the Phone because for some reason I kept getting an ‘error: insufficient permissions for device’ when I tried copying the file using adb. I used FTP (as I have SwiFTP on the phone, but you can use any method that you are comfortable with)

  • Download the Clockwork Recovery for Galaxy Nexus (GSM) to the same folder as fastboot and adb
  • Soft boot the ClockworkMod custom recovery by issuing the following command. This method will not replace the currently installed recovery partition on your phone, so you can still receive updates from Google.
  • ./fastboot-linux boot recovery-clockwork-5.5.0.2-maguro.img

    Your phone should now boot into ClockworkMod custom recovery. The next few steps are done on the phone. You shold use the volume key / rocker to navigate and the power button to select an entry.

  • From the main ClockworkMod Recovery screen / menu, select ‘install zip from sdcard
  • Select ‘choose zip from sdcard
  • Select ‘su.zip’
  • Confirm that you want do this.
  • Select ‘*****Go Back*****
  • Select the ‘reboot system now

That’s it. :) Once your phone finishes rebooting, you should now have root. If you hit issues, try reaching out to the folks in the Android Forums for help.

Hope this helps.

Update (14th Feb 2012): As you all know links/stuff tends to disappear over time on the internet so I have updated the post with links to my mirror of the software required to root the Nexus. Original links are still listed below.

Original Download links:

– Suramya

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