UPDATE 1: There is a newer guide for Pixel 4 running Android 11, refer to this: How to Root Pixel 4 and 4A running Android 11 without TWRP. In this tutorial, we will show you how to root the Google Pixel 4A using Magisk patched boot image file, without TWRP Recovery. While Google has surprisingly stopped the sale of Pixel 4 and 4XL, yet the newly released Pixel 4A brings in plenty of reasons to cheer about. To begin with, there is a 5.81-inch screen device that has a 1080 x 2340 pixel resolution. The underlying chipset is an octa-core Qualcomm SDM730 Snapdragon 730G with Adreno 618 as the GPU.
With Android 10 out of the box, the device comes in a single variant- 128GB ROM/6GB RAM. Then there is a single 12.2 MP as well as a single 8MP selfie camera, both of which manage to take exceptional clicks, better than all the other Android devices in this and even higher segments. All these features are then supported by a 3140 mAh battery, which is somewhat on the lower side. However, you get an 18W fast charging capability as well. All this for a budget device with promised fastest Android upgrades and one couldn’t have asked for more.
But to be fair, this is just the tip of the iceberg. There exists a plethora of other tweaks and modifications that you could carry out. For that, all that is needed is an administrative privilege in the form of the root. And in this guide, we will help you achieve just that. But since a working TWRP build isn’t yet available for this device, we will be making use of the patched boot image file to root Google Pixel 4A. In order words, we will first extract the stock boot.img file, then patch it via Magisk and finally flash it via the fastboot commands. Here is everything you need to know in this regard.
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Table of Contents
How to Root Google Pixel 4A without TWRP
Before we list out the steps for that, there are a few prerequisites that your device needs to qualify. Make sure to go through each of these points before proceeding ahead.
- Create a complete backup of your Pixel device. Although rooting in itself doesn’t wipe the data, but it is always recommended to be on a safer side.
- Likewise, download and install the Android SDK Platform Tools onto your PC. This will be required so as to execute ADB and Fastboot Commands. The ADB commands will be needed to boot your device to Fastboot Mode. The latter will be needed to execute fastboot commands to flash the patched boot file.
- Don’t forget to enable USB Debugging on your Pixel device as well. This is needed so that your PC successfully recognizes your device is successfully recognized in ADB Mode.
Now that we are done with the requirements section, download all the necessary files from the below section and proceed with the steps to root your Pixel 4A via Magisk (without TWRP Recovery).
- Download and install the Magisk Manager APK file. There is no need to download the Magisk Installer ZIP file.
- Next up, download the stock boot.img file corresponding to the firmware version installed on your device. For that download the stock firmware for your Pixel 4a from Google’s website. If you are going to download the OTA package then upon extraction you will find the payload.bin file. In that case, refer to our guide on How to Extract payload.bin and get the stock boot image file.
- The below two images are taken from the Pixel 4 firmware package and are just for representational purposes. With that said, you should expect the Pixel 4A to follow a similar pattern, when it comes to the partition files inside the payload.bin.
- On the other hand, if you download the factory image, then you will find a couple of files, including a zipped image file. You will have to decompress that filed and there you will find the stock boot image file.
That is it. We would only be needing these files for this tutorial. You may now proceed with the steps to root your Pixel 4A without TWRP, via Magisk. Proceed ahead with caution. Droidwin or any of its members won’t be held responsible in case something goes wrong.
STEP 1: Unlock Pixel 4A Bootloader
First and foremost, the device requires an unlocked bootloader. We have compiled a detailed guide on How to Unlock the Bootloader on Google Pixel 4A. Please go through it and once that is done, head over to the STEP 2 given below.
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STEP 2: Patch Stock Boot.img via Magisk
Now that you have got your hands on the stock boot.img file, it is time to patch it via Magisk. Follow the below steps for that:
- Transfer the stock boot.img file to your device.
- Launch the Magisk Manager app and tap on Install next to the “Magisk is not installed keyword”, as shown in the image.
- Again tap on Install in the popup that appears.
- Next, tap on Select and Patch a File.
- Browse to the boot.img file and select it.
- Magisk will take a few seconds to load that file and will then patch it. The entire process shall only take a few seconds.
- Once that is done, head over to Internal Storage > Downloads folder and you will find the magisk_patched.img file.
So with that, Magisk has successfully patched the stock boot image file. You could now flash the same onto your Pixel 4a device and hence root it via Magisk. The flashing will be carried out via Fastboot Commands, as shown in the next section below.
STEP 3: Flash magisk_patched.img to Google Pixel 4A
We will be now using the fastboot commands to flash this patched boot file onto your device. For that, make sure that you have installed Android SDK Platform Tools on your PC.
- Connect your device to PC via USB Cable. Make sure that USB debugging has been enabled.
- Transfer the magisk_patched.img file from your device to the platform-tools folder.
- Inside the same platform-tools folder, type in CMD in the address bar and hit Enter. This will launch the Command Prompt.
- Execute the below command to boot your device to the Fastboot/Bootloader mode:
adb reboot bootloader
- Your Pixel 4A will now be booted to the Fastboot Mode. Execute the below command to flash the patched boot image file. Do keep in mind that we could have also flash this patched boot file via Magisk Manager. But that requires additional efforts, hence this should be the go-to choice:
fastboot flash boot magisk_patched.img
- Once the file has been successfully flashed, you may reboot your device to System. For that, either use the hardware key or the below fastboot command:
That is it. With this, you have successfully rooted your Pixel 4A device via Magisk. If you have any issues with respect to the aforementioned steps, do let us know in the comments section below. Furthermore, once there is a working TWRP for their device (official/unofficial), we will add the steps to root Pixel 4A using TWRP. So bookmark this page for the latest developments on this news.
Android Tips and Tricks
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