How to Root GSM & CDMA Version of Galaxy Nexus Without Unlocking Bootloader

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By using this tutorial you can now root any version of ICS and Jellybean released to-date without having to unlock your bootloader. Moreover, you should now be able to root your device even if your hardware buttons are not working.

Additionally, this allows those who have not received an OTA update and want to apply it without having an unlocked bootlader or root to do so by copying the OTA update to/cache from/sdcard.

Galaxy Nexus

DISCLAIMER : Best Android Blog would not be held responsible/liable for any damages that occur to your device by following the given below procedure. So, do everything at your own risk.


  • We advise you to take backup of all your datas. Because, rooting may wipe your datas. So, if you have backup you could easily recover them.
  • Next charge your device battery fully atleast it should be 70%. Or else your device may get switched off during the middle of the rooting process.
  • Then enable the USB Debugging mode on your Galaxy Nexus by following the path Settings > Developer Options > Enable USB debugging and the drivers for your device installed on your computer.
  • Make sure Samsung Drivers is installed in your device.

Step-by-Step instructions:

  • First download the files to your computer and unzip them.
  • Open a command prompt in the same directory.
  • Then copy the root files to your device.

adb push su /data/local/tmp/su<br
adb push Superuser.apk /data/local/tmp/Superuser.apk

  • Restore the fake “backup”: adb restore fakebackup.ab

Note: Do not click restore on your device. Just enter the command into the command prompt on your PC and press the enter key.

  • Run the “exploit”: adb shell “while ! ln -s /data/local.prop /data/data/; do :; done” Note: when you enter this command, you should see your adb window flooded with errors — this is what is supposed to happen.
  • Now, that the “exploit” is running, click restore on your device.
  • Once it finishes, reboot your device : adb reboot.

NOTE : Do not try and use your device when it reboots. Running this exploit will reboot your device into emulator mode, so it will be laggy and the screen will flicker this is normal.

  • Once it is rebooted, open a shell : adb shell.

NOTE : Once you did the above mentioned step, you should have a root shell. i.e your prompt should be #, not $. If not, it did not work. Start again from step 4. (It may take a few tries for it to work).

  • Now we can copy su and Superuser.apk to the correct spots to give us root.
  • Mount the system partition as r/w: mount -o remount,rw -t ext4 /dev/block/mmcblk0p1 /system.
  • Copy su to /system: cat /data/local/tmp/su > /system/bin/su
  • Change permissions on su : chmod 06755 /system/bin/su
  • Symlink su to /xbin/su: ln -s /system/bin/su /system/xbin/su.
  • Copy Superuser.apk to to /system: cat /data/local/tmp/Superuser.apk > /system/app/Superuser.apk
  • Change permissions on Superuser.apk: chmod 0644 /system/app/Superuser.apk
  • Delete the file that the exploit created : rm /data/local.prop
  • Exit the ADB shell : exit (May have to type exit twice to get back to your command prompt).
  • Type the following (not sure if this is needed for the GNex, but it shouldn’t matter): adb shell “sync; sync; sync;”
  • Reboot: adb reboot
  • That’s it.  You’ve Done. You now should have root without having to unlock your bootloader. If you want to unlock now, you can without wiping anything. See segv11’s app linked at the beginning of this post.

Note : If you still do not have root access after doing these steps, redo them and add this step between 10 and 11.

  • Change the owner of su:chown 0.0 /system/bin/su
About Sarvesh Darak

Sarvesh Darak is a blogger, an online marketer, a social media specialist and an Android Lover. At Best Android Blog, he writes Android news & tutorials for Android Rooting. He is the tech head and ensures that the blog keeps running at good pace. He also looks after all the SEO and promotion work. He’s from Surat, India and keep contributing regularly at the blog.

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