How to install TWRP Recovery on Google Pixel and Pixel XL

Google Pixel and Pixel XL are out in the markets in all their glory. Galaxy Note 7’s death makes these 2 smartphones the best choices to go with right now. Since these are Google branded phones, things like Custom ROMs, Rooting and Flashing sound good. Google has always made its devices development friendly, but this time Google did the opposite. The Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones were not so easy to root, but they were somehow rooted. Now these two smartphones are also blessed by a TWRP recovery, but as we said, because of Google’s changes in the system, the recoveries are not flashable as they were supposed to. To root your phone or to install a recovery, you need to follow a little different approach as compared to that of the traditional methods.install-twrp-recovery-google-pixel-pixelxl

The TWRP recovery for Pixel and Pixel XL is still in its alpha stage, but it works well. In order to flash it on your phone, you first need to boot up a TWRP recovery on your phone temporarily and then flash another build of TWRP to make sure that it sticks on the phone. Flashing TWRP wipes off the root for now, but you can immediately regain the root access by flashing a latest version of SuperSU. We will have a look on the steps explaining how to install TWRP Recovery on Google Pixel and Pixel XL. Go ahead with us now and get it done.

Before rooting, follow these instructions

  1. Make sure that your phone is either international Google Pixel/XL. It can be Verizon Google Pixel/XL as well since you can easily unlock the bootloader of the aforementioned smartphones.
  2. The battery of your phone should be charged up to 50% to avoid power issues during rooting process.
  3. Allow USB debugging and enable OEM unlock from the developer options in your phone.
  4. Download and install Google USB drivers.
  5. Download and setup Minimal ADB & Fastboot drivers.  Mac users can use this guide to install ADB & Fastboot drivers.
  6. Backup everything before unlocking the bootloader. Unlocking the bootloader wipes off your phone, so this is a necessary step.
  7. Now unlock the bootloader of your Google Pixel phone.
  8. We will not be responsible if something goes wrong. Make sure that you are doing everything at your own risk.

How to install TWRP Recovery on Google Pixel and Pixel XL

  1. Download the recovery and root files.
  2. Copy the recovery.img file to C drive > Program Files > Minimal ADB & Fastboot folder.
  3. Copy the recovery-alpha1.zip and the SuperSU.zip file to the internal or external storage or your Google Pixel/Pixel XL.
  4. Now within the Minimal ADB and Fastboot folder,  press and hold shift key and right click on an empty area within the folder >  open command window here. Mac users can see in the Mac guide for the file they will be opening.
  5. Turn off your phone completely. Turn it on by pressing and holding Volume Down + Power Key. This will boot your phone into bootloader mode.
  6. Connect your phone to your PC now.
  7. In the command window, issue the following command:
    • for Pixel: fastboot boot twrp-3.0.2-alpha1-fastboot-sailfish.img
    • for Pixel XLfastboot boot twrp-3.0.2-alpha1-fastboot-marlin.img
  8. Now as your Pixel or Pixel XL boots up into TWRP recovery, tap Install > Locate the copied twrp-pixel-installer-marlin/sailfish-3.0.2.0-alpha1.zip file and flash it.
  9. After flashing the TWRP recovery, get back to the main menu in TWRP again and tap Reboot > Recovery.
  10. This will reboot your phone in the newly flashed TWRP recovery. Now in this recovery, tap Install > Locate the SuperSU.zip file and flash it.
  11. Once done, reboot your phone into system. That’s all.

Stuck with something? Reach us out through the comment box below.


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