Guide: Root Google Pixel and Pixel XL without losing OTA and Data

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL

Well no doubt this year Google has won the smartphones war in terms of innovation and design. Apple iPhone 7 definitely brought some new features but a loss of home button and 3.5 mm audio jack forced some user to avoid upgrade. On the other hand, for Samsung / Android fans Samsung Note 7 was totally bust to the fire catching scenarios and ultimately was called off from the shelves.  What’s make the Google Pixel so unique and innovative are three things.

  1. First, the Camera
  2. Second, the improved designed borrowed from iPhone.
  3. Third, the Android OS itself, i.e Android Nougat (Android 7.0).

But not only these three things are the main reason for users to switch over to android. There is one more, that is the control and level of customization android os allows the users. You can yourself customize the look and feel of your phone but using various apps. You can run a new launcher or even add a new feature related to software on your phone or tablet. Well not all customization can be made easily. For some you need to have Root Privileges to enable to do certain things such modifying the system code or adding new features to the system.

Disclaimer: We here @TheNerdMag will not be responsible for any data loss or any damage done to your device during the upgrade or rooting process. You can proceed own your own, thought doing this will void your warrant (if any).

What is Root?

For those new to Android World or doing rooting for the first time. Root your android phone allows you to run certain code with admin or advanced permission which otherwise are not allowed by default to protect your security. But things are not always as they seem. It is now relative easily and most preferred method among users to root their phone for customization.

Root Google Pixel / XL: root-android

Make sure before doing anything you back up your android phone and your data so in case something goes wrong you always have your precious data. You can easily backup your data using this guide without any root in 5 minutes.

  1. Download correct root package zip file from the below links according to your phone mode.
    1. Pixel (sailfish):
      (do fastboot boot to root/update)
    2. Pixel XL (marlin):
      (do fastboot boot to root or update)
  2. Make sure you have unlocked bootloader to root Google Pixel / XL.
  3. Put your phone in bootloader mode using steps below:
    1. Turn off device
    2. Hold volume down and power up your phone.
    3. Now connect your phone to pc and let the drivers install.
  4. Now copy the files from the above downloaded zip where you have installed adb+fastboot. If not, you can follow this guide.
  5. Now extract files from the zip and you will get “boot-to-root.img”.
  6. We now have to boot Pixel or XL from this image. We don’t need to flash it only boot it. To do so proceed further.
  7. Open command prompt in that folder by pressing shit + right click and select open command window here.
  8. Enter “adb devices” to check if your phone is recognized and drivers are installed.
  9. Enter “fastboot boot boot-to-root.img” and your device will automatically restart.

Once restart is complete your device will be rooted and running a system less root. Because of this you will be able to download and install Over the air updates from Google without losing any root. If you have any questions related root Google Pixel guide you can ask in the comments below.