How To Unbrick Android/Recover A Bricked Android Phone. We all like to play with our Android devices. Testing new Custom Roms, Tweaked Kernels or other tweaks is, at least in my opinion, part of the whole Android experience.Flashing a custom ROM on your Android is risky.
You never know what will go wrong even if you skip one simple step while flashing. But this won’t stop us from flashing, tweaking and exploring the deepest corner of our beloved android.
But sometimes things go wrong. First of all: Don’t panic! In contrast to iOS, Android is a rather open operating system which makes fixing a soft-bricked device sometimes really easy.
Originally, a bricked device meant a device that was only as useful to you as a brick; meaning the device is dead and gone. Over time however, it got a broader meaning. A bricked device is a device which has malfunctioned either due to a software or hardware error. There are two types of bricking:
- Soft brick: This is when the Android device in question encounters an OS / software related error. In such a scenario, the device will either get stuck at brand logo, bootloop, boot straight to bootloader / recovery or not show any sign of life.
- Hard brick: This is when the Android in question encounters a hardware related problem. This would often require changing a hardware component.
Also Check – How to Get Google Pixel Camera On Any Android Phone
So what is “soft-brick”? It is the situation when your phone is unable to start because of software corruption. This usually occurs after flashing incompatible ROM and/or not following the instructions properly. Your device is soft-bricked if it is:
- Stuck on vendor logo.
- Stuck on boot animation
- Boot looping
- Not charging, etc.
There are many methods for repairing a soft bricked device but not all methods works for every device. There one common solution that works on most of the device. It is called “Fastboot”. In this tutorial, we’re going to focus on “Fastboot” and learn how to repair a soft-bricked device using Fastboot. Follow the points below.
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1. Download the SDK:
The SDK provides developer tools necessary for building, testing and debugging apps on android. You can get it from http://developer.android.com/sdk/index.html. Download the latest version for your platform i.e. Windows, Mac or Linux. We don’t need to install the SDK for this tutorial as we are only going to use one of its tools.
2. Boot device to Fastboot:
Now you have to boot tour device into Fastboot. This can be done by using various key combination which will vary from device to device. For example, in Sony Xperia P you can boot into Fastboot by pressing volume up button and connecting it to the computer.
3. Locate Fastboot folder:
Extract the zip you’ve downloaded. We’ll only need the Fastboot tool from the SDK folder which is located in the “platformtools” subfolder of the SDK.
4. Check your commands:
Double clicking on the Fastboot icon on the platform-tools will also give you the various commands you can use. After you’re more experienced, you’ll be able to use multiple commands at the same time.
5. Change Directory:
Now change the directory on CMD or similar to that of the platform-tools folder. To do this you need to type “cd” followed by the full path to the platform-tools folder. For example “cd /Users/name/Desktop/ android-sdk-mac_x86/platform-tools”.
6. Check Fastboot mode:
Connect your device in Fastboot mode using proper key combinations. Check that the device is recognized by typing “fastboot devices” in the command line. All commands on Mac and Linux should be followed by a “/”, for example “/fastboot”. Your serial should be listed if you’re connected.
7. Wipe (optional)
In some cases. Wiping the device will repair you soft-bricked device if it was caused by conflicting data and files. To do this type “fastboot –w” in the command line and your device will be cleared.
8. Flash a Recovery:
Download a new custom Recovery for you device. You can go to www.clockworkmode.com ad search a compatible recovery for your device. Then place it in platform-tools folder for easy access. To flash a custom recovery, you need to type “fastboot flash recovery (recoveryimagename.img)”. Do not disconnect the device while ti is in progress.
9. Flash a ROM:
After you’ve flashed a custom recovery, you can now use it to flash a custom rom. To do so you can download compatible ROM and place it in your phone and select “install zip” or similar from the recovery and select you downloaded ROM to install. Alternatively, you can also flash a ROM using Fastboot. To start flashing, type “fastboot update (rom.zip)”. This will take some minutes to complete.
You device may reboot after the flashing procedure is completed. If not, reboot it manually by using Fastboot. Type “fastboot reboot” and the device will restart. Rebooting for the first time after flashing an new ROM takes a longer time than usual reboots so be patient.
This is the end of this tutorial. This is how you repair your soft-bricked device.
Also Check – How To Root Android Phone With/Without Computer
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How to get files to or from a device if you can’t boot to Android
If your Android device does not boot anymore it can be tricky to get files to your device (to install a backup) or from your device (to backup personal files on your computer). Luckily, TWRP and CWMR include ADB drivers.
- Open the Windows command or Mac terminal and navigate to the direction where the ADB / fastboot drivers are located
- Use the following command to push files to your device:
ADB push filename(or folder) directory on your device
- Example: ADB push /backup/ /sdcard/ – This will transfer the complete folder backup from your computer to the SD card on your device
- Use the following command to get files from your device:
ADB get filename(or folder) directory on your computer
- Example: ADB get /downloads/ /backup – This will transfer the complete folder “downloads” from your device to the /backup/ folder on your computer
The files should now be on your computer or internal storage
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I hope that I was able to offer you a first-aid for your Android emergency. There are many ways to get your Android device back to life. Please comment below or consult the XDA-developers forums if you have any questions!