If you have an Android set and you have seen or read about root Android devices, you must be thinking about trying it out. Few years back, Android phones weren’t functioning to their potential. The only alternative was to root them to live to their potential. At that time, the only software that could help to root was a Horrible one (I’d rather not name that). From the noun it, the app was a maniac and wasted data and battery life. Hence, it offered bad experience overall.
Even so, technology has boosted Android root now. Not to mention, rooting has given rise to a world of possibilities for Android users.
The downside, however, is that it negates your Android agreement. Rooting may also result in your Android device getting blocked, if not done right. If you are thinking of rooting your Android device, understand the pros and cons equally.
Notwithstanding, the manufacturers, as well as carriers, are persuading Android users to stop rooting because the risks associated with rooting your Android are factual. In essence, the act itself is dangerous but minimal if the user is cautious. If done well, inherent benefits are well worth it—no denying that. This piece will dig deep through the entire process of how to root Android phone manually and with apps. Some Android sets get rooted in minutes while others will take some time, so hold tight—let’s get started by covering the basics.
What is Root or Rooting?
Root or rooting is the process of gaining access to Android’s subsystem. You gain access to the entire operating system of your phone or any other Android based device. You can also customize anything you want, once the device is rooted. You’ll gain access to all restrictions imposed by the manufacturer and carrier. In doing so, you can add more apps under-lock or over-lock your processor, and furthermore, replace the firmware. In other words, it’s more like the jailbreaking for Androids.
For Android root to be successful, you need to backup current software. You then install a new custom ROM (a modified Android version). Android devices run on Linux permissions and file system ownership, it is only when you sign in then you become a user. There are things users get permitted to do and not others as per the user permission. The apps you install after rooting get user ID and they will have permission to do certain things.
So when you root your Android phone or tablet, you are adding a premier Linux function. A small file known as “su” get added to the system of your device for other users to run it. SU means Switch User. If the file your device is running without any numerical, it switches your credentials.
In conclusion, we can say, it approves users to a superuser from a normal user. It is then that you will have complete control of your Android device. You can add, remove and access all functions of your phone/tablet that got blocked.
Why Should You Root Android?
Should I root my Android? Yes, No, Maybe. These three answers are the ones many battle with, when thinking about rooting. All are legit answers but users have contrasting reasons why they want to root their devices.
Some believe they paid for the hardware so, they are free to do anything they like. Others would like to add extra features that aren’t included in internet servers. Also, another secret reason behind rooting Android is the fact that almost all of the spying software require folks to have the target device (the device they want to spy on) rooted.
Because only in that case they can spy on everything of target device including Whatsapp, Facebook, Instagram and all other third party services on it. Moreover, some would like to fix services that are there but aren’t functioning as they expect. Other users root android phone because they like the hardware but hate the software.
In conclusion, people root their devices because they would like to remove extra features – the features they don’t need them. Or add new ones that aren’t available on their devices already.
Preparation Before Rooting Your Phone
Having a prior picture of what rooting is and the impact it has is essential. One fact you need to know is that rooting changes the entire device functionality, from the inherent security built by Google to those who people built it. Another fact, when you root Android phone software you are responsible for the integrity – the operating system, security, and every application.
This is an extra responsibility to many but to some, there is no big deal. Rooting isn’t the solution to the majority since you can mess everything on your device if you are not sure. You should know how to root android phone manually before you start. This will edge mistakes which would turn to be costly into a light paperweight.
In so saying, rooting an Android device means your guarantee is invalid. Network access and apps including other services get restricted because of the security thread. The majority of users have done this without noticing and security ends up failing.
There those users who care less about the whole process. In such a way that, how tough their Android handsets are restricted they will do anything to root them. Even if it’s getting an android root download. As a result, the risk is concrete. It is your responsibility to take all these into account.
Pros of Android Rooting
- You can download hundreds of apps from over a million of apps in Google Play Store
- You have complete internet access
- You have the ability to install apps and flash custom ROMs. And each comes with extra features that streamline phone/tablet performance.
- You’ll have the ability to accept or deny some app permissions
Cons of Rooting
- Rooting could create security vulnerability depending on the services and apps you have used. For example, Google does not support Google Wallet services for all rooted handsets.
- When you root your device you run the risk of blocking your device. The only way to avoid bricking is to follow instruction. The guide you follow should be for your device that any custom ROM you flash is designed.
- Manufacturers and carriers use rooting as an excuse to nullify a warranty. Good news, you can unroot your device if need be for repair. Flash the original backup ROM you made and no one will discover you rooted your phone.
Preparing Your Android Device for Rooting
There are few things to take into account before you// root your phone. Although this will depend on the method you will use. Many ways will need you to unlock bootloader or install Android SDK. It’s not a taxing work though it sounds a lot of work. You need to know how to use these tools as they will help when thing go wrong.
Don’t get scared as we will walk through this journey and show you how to set up and install Android SDK. Unlocking bootloader is a bit different depending on the phone you have. Back up everything that is important before you start. Also, backup your current ROM before flashing a new one.
In summary, this what you need to do;
- Ensure your device is fully charged, at least 60%
- Turn on USB debugging as well as OEM Unlocking
- Go to the Developer Options within settings of your device. It’s located at the bottom of your setting screen
- Tap on About Phone to find the Build Number
- Tap on the Build Number seven times. And the Developer Options will appear on the settings main page
- Tap on the back key to see Developer Options
- Click on Developer Options
- Check to Enable USB Debugging
- Check to enable OEM Unlocking
Apps to Use in Rooting
KingRoot, Kingo Root, and Towel Root are commercial programs that have gained popularity. The three programs will root your device less than the time you take to prepare a cup of coffee. The only problem with these apps is that they are compatible with Android devices. Those running on 5.1 Lollipop and below.
These apps may or may not contain malware nor send you data off the server from restricted nations. But a couple of users have expressed concerns on Android root download. Set your device before you root your device.
Below is a list of devices compatible with the KingoRoot program.
If you have a Galaxy S6 or S7 or any other new device running on Android 5.1 and above, the above methods will not work. Android 5.1 is different from Android 5.0. With 5.1 a modified kernel needs to get flashed to achieve the root. The Kernel is the pivot operating system and controls the hardware. No Android device can operate without it.
There are some developers who swank about their one-click tools. They say it takes care of all Android device yet there is no such tool. If your phone isn’t compatible with any of the listed programs, then you’ll take some time researching how to root Android without a computer.
Yet, XDA Developers Forum is the best place to start. Scrutinize every thread on your device and you will find a method that has worked for other people. Take time and find the right method for your Android device.
Installing Android SDK Tool
Some methods used in rooting Android devices need ADB installation and Fastboot.
A bootloader is a program that determines applications. Those that will run on your phone startup process. This will also allow you to customize your device. Although manufacturers have provided ways to unlock bootloaders, they provide to developers. Users need to register an account first. Check the links for Motorola, HTC, and Sony Android devices.
Not all manufacturers and carriers allow bootloaders. But you can always find a way to maneuver around. Try the XDA Developers Forum.
Rooting your Phone Using Kingo Root
Kingo RooT Program is used to root Android with PC or without. It can also be work on a Windows-based computer.
You only need a USB driver that works well. Yet, you need to check if your device is compatible with Kingo Root. You can then download the Kingo Android Root APK or Kingo Android Root for Windows on your Android. It’s recommended that Android app tool should be the one to use because of its simplicity.
- After you download and install APK file
- Open the KingRoot App
- Tap on Try To Root
- Wait for few minutes
If installed, you will see a check mark with words Root successful as shown below:
For a step guide on how to root android phone manually, click on this link.
How to Root Your Device Using Towel Root
Towel Root is one of the easiest programs you can use to root your device. It’s designed to root the AT&T Samsung Galaxy S5 but not all the devices. This program cannot work with some Motorola and HTC devices. You need to download and run on the computer. Towel Root then will root your device by downloading and running the app. This app works with devices that have kernel bill birth earlier than June 3, 2014.
Download this app from its official website to avoid malware. With Towel Root, you will be able to download apps outside of Google Play Store.
How to Root the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge on Android 5.1.1
If your device is a Galaxy S6 or Galaxy S6 Edge running Android 5.1.1 this guide will get the job done. Changes made by Google and Samsung in 5.1.1 need a modified Kernel to get flashed to get rooted. But there is no one-click method available. The process will take few steps.
One thing you need to know, rooting Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge will trip the Knox. This means you won’t be able to use Samsung pay. The method discussed below works on most Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge but not AT & T and Verizon Wireless versions. Those devices are too secure to unlock because of their bootloaders.
The following models are compatible with this method
Galaxy S6-SM-G9201, SM-G920F, T-Mobile SM-G920T, Korean SM-G92OS/SM-G920L, Sprint SM-G920P, US Cellular SM-G920R4, Canadian SM-G920W8
Galaxy S6 Edge- Canadian SM-G925W8, Sprint SM-G925P, T-Mobile SM-G925T, SM-G925F, SM-G9251, Korea SM-G925S/SM-G925K/SM-G925L
If your model isn’t listed and not running on android 5.1.1 don’t attempt rooting using this method. Besides, make sure the OEM is active. Go to settings and Developer Settings at the bottom of the page.
Activate them using these steps.
- Click on the About Phone and find the Build Number
- Click on the Build Number seven times. The Developer Options will appear on the setting main page
- Click the Back key and see developer options
- Click to enable OEM Unlocking
- Switch off your phone
- Tap the volume up key to put your device in ODIN download mode
- Download the right root kernel through this link
- Download ODIN v3.10.6 here
- Download Samsung Galaxy S6/S6 Edge USB Drivers here
- Using a micro USB cable, connect your phone to your computer
- Run the ODIN software and ensure there is a COM number in the highlighted blue box. If it doesn’t show, your USB is not installed well.
- If everything is fine, click on AP and select the root kernel that you downloaded
- Tap on start. It will take about 5 minutes
- You should see the Pass at top left of the page
- Root and now you will now see the SuperSu app in the drawer
For more details, read the information here.
How to Root the Galaxy S6, S6 Edge and Note 5 Running MarshMallow
Not all Galaxy S6, S6 Edge and Note 5 running Android Marshmallow can get rooted. Check your model by clicking on Settings, About Phone then look under Model Number
These models can get rooted using this method
- Galaxy Note 5- SM-N920C
- Galaxy S6- SM-G920F, SM-G920FD, SM-G920S, SM-G920K, SM-G920L
- Galaxy S6 Edge- SM-G925S, SM-G925K, SM-G925F, SM-G925L
If your device is not listed and is not running on Android 6.0.1 don’t attempt to root. Also, rooting the Galaxy S6, S6 Edge and Note 5 will trip Knox. You won’t be able to use Samsung Pay.
The OEM on your device should be working. Open the settings t see the Developer Settings at the bottom of your screen.
Follow these steps to activate them
- Click on About Phone to find the Build Number
- Click on the Build Number seven times. The Developer number will appear on the settings main page
- Click on Back key to see Developer Options
- Check and enable the OEM Unlocking
Now, to root your device, follow these instructions
- Download the SpaceX Kernel (with tar.md5 extension) for your model. Save it to your computer and remember its location. Download here.
- Download the ODIN version 3.10.7 to your computer and remember its location.
- Download SuperSU version 2.25 zip file here. Do not unzip it and remember its location.
- Download TWRP file with tar.md5 extension for your device to your computer. Remember its location. Here is a link to its download site.
- Download Samsung USB driver for your device at this link.
- Switch off your device. Hold down the Volume Down and Power buttons at the same time (for about 5 seconds) and you will see a warning screen.
- Click on the Volume Up key to put your phone in ODIN download mode.
- Using a USB cable, connect your phone to your computer.
- Run the ODIN software and ensure there is a COM number in blue highlighted in the box. If it doesn’t show then your USB is not connected well.
- Click on AP and select the SpaceX Kernel file you downloaded earlier.
- Click on start and wait for few minutes.
- You should see Pass at the top left and your device will reboot.
- Once your device has rebooted, switch it back in ODIN mode following steps 6 and 7.
- Connect your back to your computer of its disconnected.
- Click on AP and select TWRP recovery file you downloaded.
- Click Start and wait for few minutes.
- Once you finish, your phone/tablet will have rebooted.
- After rebooting, click on Allow, to allow access to device data to copy files to your phone.
- Copy the SuperSU zip file you downloaded to the root directory on your device.
- Switch off your device. Do this by holding down Volume Up, Home button and Power buttons until you see Samsung logo.
- Once the logo appears, release the power button only.
- You should be in TWRP recovery after few seconds. Let off all the remaining buttons and click on install.
- Select the SuperSU zip file you copied to your device and swipe to flash.
- Reboot your device once more. After it reboots, you’ll see the SuperSU app in the app drawer. The process is complete and you can use your device now.
Follow this link for video tutorials.
Rebooting Nexus Devices Running Marshmallow
There is no one click method to root Nexus device running Android 6.0 Marshmallow. You thus need to flash a modified kernel.
Android SDK tools including ADB and fast boot are essential. Also, before you get started, you need to download TWRP recovery files for your device.
Below are device models and a link to installation instructions:
- Nexus 5
- Nexus 6
- Nexus 6P
- Nexus 9
- Nexus 5X: Same instructions as Nexus 6P
- Nexus 7 2013 (Wi-Fi): Same instructions as Nexus 5
- Nexus 7 2013 (LTE): Same installation instructions as Nexus 5
Download the best custom kernel to root the android device.
Below is a list of devices and links to their appropriate custom kernels:
You also need to download a SuperSU root package.
- Copy the SuperSU and kernel files to your device storage. Ensure you remember it. You can’t copy these files if you have Nexus 7 or Nexus 9. The two devices are to get rebooted into recovery mode first.
- Switch off your put and put it into fast boot mode. Do this by pressing the Volume Up/Down and Power buttons at ago. //There are devices having different key combinations. Make sure you have the right key combination. Refer to this link.
- Press the Volume Down key twice until the Recovery Options Press the Power button to select it and boot into TWRP recovery mode
- Nexus 7 and Nexus 9 devices will ask for a password once you boot into recovery mode. Just click on cancel. Click on Wipe and swipe below to reset your android device. Ensure you have backed up everything before you do this. Since there is no way round. Reconnect your device via USB once the factory reset is complete. Select the MTP to transfer Kernel and SuperSU files.
- From the TWRP main menu select Browse the custom kernel file you downloaded and use the Swipe to Confirm Flash option. It’s located at the bottom of your screen. Click on it to flash your device. NB- Flash the kernel before the SuperSU file.
- Flash the SuperSU file like you flashed the kernel
- From the TWRP main menu, select reboot followed by system
- You’ll have rooted the Nexus device running on Android 6.0 Marshmallow. SuperSU app should show in your app drawer.
Rooting the Galaxy S7and S7 Edge Running Marshmallow
The good news! With Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge is that if it features international version with Exynos 8890 it will root. But if your version is that of Qualcomm Snapdragon 820, you will not be able to root. This is because the bootloader has locked thus rooting is impossible. If you are within U.S you are not lucky unless you import an international device.
Rooting both devices (S7 and S7 Edge) will trip Knox. You won’t be able to use Samsung Pay. Rooting is compatible with the following. S7 and S7 Edge devices- SM-G930F (S7) or SM-G935F(S7 Edge). Check the model of your device by opening the Settings then About Phone and look under the Model Number.
Do not try this procedure if you have a different model.
To root your devices ensure the OEM Unlocking is active. Or you can activate it by opening Settings on your device
- Click on the About Phone and find the Build Number
- Click on the Build Number seven times. The Developer Options will appear on the Settings main page
- Click the Back key to see Developer Options
- Click on Developer Options
- Check to enable OEM Unlocking
- Download Chainfire Auto-Root file to your computer. Galaxy S7- SMG930F is here Galaxy S7 Edge SM-G935F is here.
- Extract Auto Root file on your computer to get a file with a.tar.md5 extension. Ensure you remember its location.
- Download ODIN latest version 3.10.7 here.
- Download Samsung Galaxy S7/S7 Edge USB drivers through this link.
- Switch off your device. Press the Volume Down, Home and Power keys at the same time until you see the warning screen.
- Connect your device to your computer using USB cable.
- Run the ODIN software and ensure COM number is in the blue box available. Check your USB connection if the number is not available.
- Click on AP and select Auto Root.tar.md5 file you downloaded.
- Make sure you have selected the Auto-Reboot and F.Reset Times Options in ODIN. Unselect the Repartition button.
- Click on Start.
- You should be able to see Pass at the top left and your phone will reboot.
- Once your device has rebooted, you will see the SuperSU app in the app drawer.
Rooting Your HTC Phone
Just like any other phones, HTC devices bootloader can be unlocked. Using the HTC Developer Program. The easiest HTC to root is the HTC 10. Using the program mentioned, it is easier to unlock the bootloader and send images and much more.
Most relevant, you can use Sunshine program. It can root your Android device too, by clicking here. It’s upon users whether to root their HTC Android devices using this programs or root Android with PC. Users can also use Android SDK to do this manual way. Both methods will root your HTC Android device.
Check this link for information about rooting your specific HTC model.
Rooting Lenovo (Motorola) Android Devices
Unlocking Motorola bootloader is a bit liberal as offered by its development site (details here) using premier Android SDK tools you can unlock the bootloader. You can then custom recovery image then flash.
There are Motorola devices that aren’t covered under bootloader unlocking policy. Check the full list here. This means you will have to seek commercial or Android phone software like OneClickRoot (here) or MOFOROOT (here). For a complete list of Lenovo (Motorola) rooting, check the forum on this link.
What you Need after Rooting?
Now you have detailed information about rooting and specific devices. Don’t panic if your Android device isn’t listed. Chances are you will find an option online how to root it. Start with forums like Phandroid Forums and XDA developer forum.
Once you find the right guide for your phone/tablet, work through the steps carefully. It might be taxing but you need to follow each step to be successful.
Once you have rooted your device, you need to download Root Checker. Root Checker is an app that will ensure your android device gets rooted well. There are apps in the Google Play Store that can let you know if you have super-user permission. Download yours by clicking on this link.
Installing a root management app will give you a piece of mind. Since rooting your device will expose you to security threats. Those apps that have rooted benefits will ask for approval. It is at this point that apps like SuperSU come in. They let you allow or deny permissions for a super user.
SuperSU tracks all permissible apps and next time you use the app, you will get permission. This same app tracks the number of time an app requests to root.
Unrooting Your Android Device
Rooting has pro and cons which we have earlier seen but you may still want to go to the ways things were. Whichever method you may deploy, ensure you backup all your previous data.
Unrooting Using SuperSU
This app will enable you to unroot your Android device. By clicking on app setting and selecting full unroot option.
Unrooting With File Explore
Using file explore app like ES File Explorer (here) to unroot your device. Turn root explorer on under Tools in the ES File Explorer menu. Grant it root privileges if asked. Follow this procedure
- 1st Go to your android main drive found under “I”
- 2nd Go to system>bin then click and hold on busybox and SU then delete them.
- 3rd Go to the system>xbin, click on busybox and su and delete them
- 4th Also, go to the system>app then delete apk
- 5th Restart your device and it should get unrooted
Unrooting Using OTA Update
Install the OTA update and you will have broken the root. Navigate the software update and get to Settings>About Device. Yet, be keen with some root android methods as they may prove impossible to update. In such a scenario you need to first flash the original malware.
The malware is fond on the manufacturer site but you need to follow your device guide. All these methods have hiccups. It’s vital that you back up first before unrooting. Your phone should be full of power and you need to take your time.
I believe you have all the information on how to root android without a computer. Root Android with PC and any extra information. Feel free to leave a comment if the article was helpful.