While visiting looking out for a custom ROM for your Xperia Device, you must have heard that you need to unlock your phone’s bootloader first, but ever wondered what is this bootloader, why is it locked by default and why you can’t flash a custom rom image keeping the booltoader locked? Well, we have the answer for you.
Basically the Bootloader starts the operating system of your Android smartphone, also ensures that the operating system running on your device is well and is up to the mark. Bootloader also verifies the working and functionality of your device’s radio, processor and some other hardware components. Google provides a base bootloader for each Android version, but the smartphone manufacturers optimize it for their devices and put the necessary restrictions. The purpose is to ensure the device’s security, and restrict the custom firmwares to be flashed on the phone.
Unlocking the phone’s bootloader gives you the privilege to flash custom roms, load custom recoveries that require the bootloader to be unlocked and do other similar things. Once unlocked, the manufactures take no more responsibility of your device and you have void the warranty of your device.
As Android is an open source operating system, the developments are never going to face a break. To allow the full use of the devices, the manufacturers allow the unlocking of the bootloader officially. Unlocking your it is the very first step towards rooting your phone, you can easily flash any custom recovery using the .img file and then flash SuperSu or Super User and gain root access. We’ll be having a look at a method to unlock the bootloader of Sony’s Xperia Lineup. Although the Sony has provided all the details and method at the official site, I still found it necessary to explain it a little more and explain the method in even more simple and easiest steps. Let’s move forward to the method now.
Before heading towards the unlocking method, please keep in mind that it is highly custom and may result in bricking your device, as mentioned this will also void the warranty of your device. In case of any mishap, we may not be held responsible. Furthermore, unlocking the bootloadder will also erase your phone completely and you will loose all of your data. So, before you unlock your phone make sure that you backup all of your apps, media content, contacts, call logs and text messages. Also make sure that you back up your TA partition before you unlock your bootloader.
Note: Along with voiding the warranty of your phone, unlocking bootloader will also break Bravia Engine 2 on some Sony Devices. The only way to get it back is to restore the TA partition. So, If you want to backup TA partition, you need to find a method to root your device without unlocking it’s bootloader first. Method for rooting some Xperia devices are available on XDA developers forum, but you may need to downgrade your device to an older Android version to root it without unlocking the bootloader. If you really don’t care about Bravia Engine 2, you may not worry about it then.
How to Unlock Bootloader of Sony Xperia Lineup:
- Install Android ADB & Fastboot Drivers using the quick setup with Minimal tool. Find the guide here.
- Now first of all you need to check if your device’s bootloader unlocking is allowed or not, to do so open the dailer on your device.
- Type *#*#7378423#*#*.
- As soon as you enter the above code, a menu will open up.
- Tap Service info > Configuration > Bootloader Unlock. If it says Yes, that means bootloader unlocking is allowed, else you can also find out if the Bootloader is already unlocked. I’ve already unlocked my Xperia Z1’s bootloader, in the following picture its showing “Bootloader Unlocked: Yes”
- Now in the dialer type “*#06#”, you should get the IMEI number of your phone. Note it down somewhere.
- After verifying the bootloader unlock permission, turn off your device completely.
- Now open the Minimal ADB and Fastboot command prompt, that you created using the guide above.
- Press the back key or Volume Up key on your Xperia Device and connect it to your PC while keeping the key pressed. The back key works for older Xperia devices, while for newer devices Volume Up key will work.
- In case you are trying to unlock the bootloader of your Sony Xperia Z1, please make sure that it’s running on latest Android 4.3 Jelly Bean firmware. If you tried to unlock bootloader on Android 4.2.2 firmware, it will cause the camera crash on your device.
- In the command prompt type: fastboot.exe -i 0x0fce getvar version and press enter, you should get a response now e.g (0.3). This step is to verify that your device is properly connected or not.
- Now open this page and accept the legal terms and conditions by Sony to unlock the bootloader.
- After accepting the legal terms and conditions, enter your name, your phone’s IMEI number (Remove the last digit of IMEI number) and your email and click the Submit button.
- You should receive an email from Sony immediately, the email has the Key to unlock your phone’s bootloader.
- Now again in the command prompt type this com: fastboot.exe -i 0x0fce oem unlock 0xKEY. Repalce KEY with the code that you got in the email by Sony and hit Enter.
- As soon as you hit Enter, the bootloader will be unlocked and show you logs in the command prompt.
That’s All. In case you got any queries/suggestions or you face any difficulties regarding this post, please feel free to stop by the comment box below. We will try our best to help you out. Thanks All.