In this tutorial, we will show you the steps to root Pixel 2 and 2 XL, running the latest Android 11, without using TWRP. We would be using the latest Magisk Manager app v8 that is fully compatible with the latest Android 11. Then we would patch the stock boot.img file via it. After this, we would be flashing this patched boot image file via Fastboot commands onto your device. With this, you would have successfully rooted your Pixel 2 and 2 XL, running the latest Android 11, without using TWRP. [Update 1: Added a Fix for Android 11 Boot.img patch issues].
The open-source nature of Android beholds a plethora of customizations. To begin with, you could unlock the device’s bootloader, install custom ROMs like Pixel Experience, AOSP, etc and install a custom recovery like TWRP, LinegeageOS among others. Along the same lines, you could even gain administrative rights or access to the system partition. The latter is also known as rooting a device. Earlier SuperSU was the preferred tool to root your device. But the biggest issue was the fact that it made direct changes to the system partition.
However, with Magisk, things stand different, and for good. It carries out the entire tasks ‘systemlessly’, that is without making any modification to the system partition. Furthermore, it regularly gets updated. And as of now, the latest Magisk v8.0.2 is now live with tons of new features. Most importantly, it is now fully supported on devices running the latest Android 11. Now that rooting isn’t just limited to the tech enthusiasts (refer to our survey for surprising results: Rooting Poll: Is it Worth the Risk? You Decide and let us know), this guide is going to help the newcomers as well. With that said, here are the steps to root Pixel 2 or 2 XL, running the latest Android 11, without using TWRP.
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How to Root Pixel 2 and 2XL running Android 11 without TWRP
before we begin with the instructions steps, there are a few requirements that you need to meet. Please go through the prerequisites section and make sure you checkmark all the necessities.
- First and foremost, you need to unlock the device’s bootloader. If you haven’t done, then refer to our detailed guide on How to Unlock Bootloader Of Google Pixel Devices
- Next up you will also have to enable USB Debugging. This will be needed to boot the device to Fastboot Mode. So head over to Settings > About Phone > Tap on Build Number 7 times > Go back to Settings > System > Advanced > Developer Options > Enable USB Debugging. [Don’t Miss: Enable USB Debugging on a Broken Android Device’s Screen? Here’s a Workaround].
- You will also have to install the Android SDK Platform Tools. This will provide the necessary ADB and Fastboot binaries.
- Finally, download the latest Magisk Manager v 8.0.2. You don’t need to download the Magisk ZIP File, only the Magisk Manager APK is required.
That’s it. You may now proceed with the steps to root Pixel 2 or 2 XL, running the latest Android 11, without using TWRP.
STEP 1: Extract Stock boot.img
To begin with, download the stock boot.img file corresponding to the firmware version installed on your Pixel device. For that, download the stock firmware for your Pixel device 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.
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 file and there you will find the stock boot image file.
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STEP 2: Patch Stock Boot.img file
UPDATE 1: Quite a few Android 11 users are facing issues while patching the stock boot.img file via Magisk manager. Well, I have found the fix to this issue, please refer to our detailed guide on the same: Fix Magisk patched boot.img issue while Rooting Android 11. If you wish to save a click, then here’s the explanation in short: You have to install the Magisk Canary build instead of the stable and then change the update channel to Canary from within the app itself. Once you have done the said change, you may then proceed with the below steps to patch the stock boot image file using Magisk and flash it via Fastboot commands to root Pixel 2 or 2 XL running Android 11.
- Launch the Magisk Manager app on your Pixel device.
- Then tap on the Install button situated next to Magisk.
- From the Method section, choose Select and Patch a file.
- Browse to the extracted boot.img file and select it.
- Then tap on the Let’s Go option situated at the top right.
- Magisk will now load the boot.img file and will patch it accordingly. Once that is done, you would get the Download Complete message.
- The patched boot image file will be saved in Internal Storage > Downloads. The name of the file will be magisk_patched.img
STEP 3: Flash Patched Boot.img file via Fastboot
In this final section, you just have to flash this patched boot.img file to root the Pixel 2 or 2 XL, running the latest Android 11, without using TWRP.
- First off, move the magisk_patched.img file to the platform-tools folder on your PC. This is the folder where you have installed the Android SDK.
- Now connect your device to PC via USB cable. Make sure you have enabled USB Debugging.
- Head over to the 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 Fastboot Mode:
adb reboot bootloader
- It’s now time to flash the patched boot.img file onto your Pixel device. Type in the below command and hit Enter
fastboot flash boot magisk_patched.img
- Finally, you could now boot your device to the OS. Use the below command for that:
That’s it. With this, we conclude the guide on how to root Pixel 2 and 2 XL, running the latest Android 11, without using TWRP. If you have any queries, do let us know in the comments section below We will get back to you with a solution as soon as possible.
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6 thoughts on “How to Root Pixel 2 and 2 XL running Android 11 without TWRP”
Hi Sadique, can I assume that you have a Pixel 2 and were successful with this method? Thanks for posting it.
Hi Tek, thanks for the encouraging words. Unfortunately, I don’t own a Pixel 2, but I have tried this method on Pixel 4A and it worked without any issue. And true to my knowledge, it should definitely work on Pixel 2 as well. Just make sure you patch the stock boot.img having the same version as the software version currently installed on your device.
Hi, I’ve tried this with my Pixel 2 but the result is a bootloader screen with the error (Error: slot unbootable). I’m able to recover it back to the factory boot.img and then install the OS again, but it won’t succeed. I’ve even followed the Magisk canary steps. Any thoughts. Thanks.
Worked perfectly for my Pixel 2 XL with taimen-ota-rp1a.201005.004.a1
i try like this way, everything is ok, but “su ” not work
I just purchased a NOS unopened Verizon 2XL. Looks like Verizon is finally dumping them.
It was at Oreo, somehow, didn’t think it worked, I unlocked the bootloader. It’s now on, but greyed out in the on position. It updated to Android 11, I now get the message at boot, your boatloader is unlocked, and warning why this is bad, then it boots on up.
Can I use the above to finish rooting it? Will I be able to flip the boot loader off,on again? The boot message is annoying.