Unlock Galaxy Nexus Bootloader [How-To]


Unlock Galaxy Nexus Bootloader

I’ve always wished if at-least Google devices could come with unlocked bootloader, you know it kind of feels.. Wow! But that doesn’t seem to be happening ─ Nexus S had locked bootloader and now the Galaxy Nexus too have locked bootloader.

Anyway it doesn’t kill the fun at all, these nexus devices comes so smart that you just have to type a single line of command to unlock the bootloader, and that’s ─ fastboot oem unlock.

How To Unlock Galaxy Nexus Bootloader

Below’s a step by step guide for folks who’re not much familiar with fastboot and stuff like that. Here you go:

  1. Download the following two files
    1. Download and install Android SDK → from here [Make sure you install Google USB Driver and Platform tools from SDK Manager]
    2. Fastboot files from here.
  2. Now put your phone in fastboot mode:
    1. Switch off your phone
    2. Hold the Volume Up Key + Volume Down Key and then press the Power button.
    3. You’ll now see a Android robot. And text below it would read “FASTBOOT MODE” in red.
  3. Extract the Fastboot.zip file on your PC
  4. Now open the Fastboot folder ─ hold Shift key and Right click at any empty space inside the folder, and select “Open command window here
  5. Now connect your phone to your PC using USB cable, and then type fastboot devices in the command prompt to make sure your device is recognized.
  6. And now to unlock the bootloader, type this in the command prompt:
    fastboot oem unlock
  7. Accept the request on your phone by selecting Yes using the Volume button and then press the Power button to confirm (see image above)
So it was that simple to unlock the bootloader on your Galaxy Nexus. However, if you’re facing any problem, you can share it with us in the comments below. We’ll most probably solve it.

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  • GranPaSmurf

    followed all the steps, open the command prompt, have phone in fastboot attached by usb cable:
    after typing ‘fastboot devices’ I have this message:

    C:UsersGranPaSmurfDownloadsFastBoot_Win7_64_104>fastboot devices
    ‘fastboot’ is not recognized as an internal or external command,
    operable program or batch file.

    C:UsersGranPaSmurfDownloadsFastBoot_Win7_64_104>fastboot oem unlock
    ‘fastboot’ is not recognized as an internal or external command,
    operable program or batch file.


  • Manuela Liriano

    :( it deleted everything… T_T

  • Uday

    it doesnt recognise may galaxy nexus.. it keeps saying waiting for devices…

    • http://twitter.com/krazyhugo Krazyhugo

      Still waiting or an answer to that…

  • Anonymous

    I get into the bootloader via “adb reboot bootloader” but “fastboot devices” never shows anything and the phone never responds to the oem unlock command.

    • Sheela

      This helped me :), thank you.

  • Josh7234

    i always get hung up with the cmd prompt i hold shift in the folder and i see no option to open up any command prompt

  • axdenied

    What is the advantage of unlocking the bootloader ? Can I use the phone with another carrier ? Thanks.

    • http://www.theandroidsoul.com Shivam

      No, the purpose of unlocking the bootloader is to install custom firmwares, recovery and mods.

  • Dave

    i get still get an Android 1.0 in the device tree. My pc cant communicate with the phone, please help 

    • http://profiles.google.com/jocke.anell Joakim Anell

      I have created the drivers for  Galaxy Nexus Fastboot Mode  (Android 1.0)

      • Massimiliano

        I’m sorry for the question but I am facing the same problem: uknown device (not even android 1.0…just that) how can we install the drivers???

        • http://www.theandroidsoul.com Shivam

          Installing google usb driver from SDK manager didn’t helped?

      • shr1k3r

        Thank you! that helped so much!!

      • TechnoT

        Wow thanks a million!!!!!

      • Ma3

        Thanks lot lot lot, it help me lot :)

  • drdino

    I can’t seem to install the drivers for adb, still get an Android 1.0 in the device tree. 

  • david

    I do not see a setup program in Samsung_drivers.zip

    • http://www.theandroidsoul.com Shivam

      I’ve re-uploaded the drivers file. Thanks for notifying :)

      • No

         thank you Shivam!