How to Unlock Bootloader of any Motorola Android Phone. If you are new to the Android world of unlocking and rooting, then you might have heard a term called Bootloader. So what is this bootloader? Even I was a bit confused when I came across this term. So I went through various tutorials and websites and came to the conclusion that Bootloader is basically a code which is executed before any Operating System actually initiates. The concept of bootloaders is universal to all Operating systems including the OS on our computer, laptop and smartphones etc. Bootloaders contain a package of instructions along with their own debugging and modifications which helps in booting the operating system kernel. As the bootloader is extremely processor specific, all Android phones have different Custom ROMS developed due to high variance of processing hardware present on the device. When it comes to Android phones which is basically an open source operating system, every manufacturer has their own version of bootloader specific for the hardware present.
The main reason behind a locked bootloader is that every manufacturer want its users to stick to their specially designed Android OS version for a particular device. With a locked bootloader it becomes quite difficult to flash those unofficial custom ROMs as well as rooting a device. If you any how try to flash the custom firmwares without unlocking the bootloader then it may increase the risk of bricking your phone. Many of the Motorola smartphones have their bootloader locked by the manufacturers which can be officially unlocked if you want to root or flash custom ROMs or custom kernels etc. Unlocking bootloader allows you to flash custom recoveries like Clockworkmod (CWM), TWRP which can be further used for rooting or installing custom ROMs. We’ll discuss a detailed step by step procedure on how to Unlock Bootloader of any Motorola Android Phone.
This guide will work on most of the Motorola Android phones including Moto G, Moto G 2nd Gen, Moto G 3rd Gen, Moto X, Moto X 2nd Gen, Moto E, Motorola Droid Maxx (Developer Edition), Droid Razr M/HD, Atrix HD (Developer Edition), Photo Q 4G LTE, Electrify M and many other smartphones which support Motorola’s bootloader unlocking website. This method won’t work on Moto X (AT&T or Verizon), Moto G (AT&T or Verizon) as AT&T and Verizon have locked bootloader. If you have no idea whether your device supports bootloader unlocking or not, just try to implement the steps given below and find it out. The method given below can be used on Windows, Mac or Linux operating system. If you are still interested in unlocking the bootloader, and you understand the consequences both to your device and to your warranty, then you may refer our actual article given below.
Warning: Perform everything mentioned below at your own risk. If any damage occurs then we’ll not be held responsible for that. Also all the steps given are only for Motorola smartphone. Do not implement this on any other device.
- Make sure your Motorola phone is charged at least upto 60%.
- Backup all your personal data and content including contacts, sms/mms, apn settings, call logs, whatsapp messages, memos etc. present on your phone as unlocking the bootloader will wipe out every data present.
- Make sure that you’ve enabled the OEM Unlock mode on your phone. If not, then do so by following the path Menu->Settings->Developer options ->OEM Unlock. If you can’t see Developer option then go to Settings->About Phone and tap 7 times on the Build number. This will appear the Developer option in the Settings menu.
- Make sure your computer has Motorola mobile specific USB drivers installed in it. This is must so as to detect the phone when connected to computer. You can manually install the drivers from the link given below.
- You must temporarily disable all the security related tools like antivirus and firewall that are installed on your computer.
Procedure to Unlock Bootloader of any Motorola Android Phone:
Step 1: Download and extract the fastboot.zip file on your computer. After extracting you’ll find the following files in the fastboot folder:
Note: This fastboot.zip contains all the files you need for all Windows, Mac or Linux OS. So you don’t need to download the whole Android SDK package as mentioned in the Motorola Official website.
Step 2: Power Off your Motorola Android smartphone completely until it vibrates.
Step 3: Now you need to boot into fastboot mode. For that press and hold Volume down key + Power button simultaneously until you land into fastboot mode.
Step 4: Keeping your Motorola phone in fastboot mode connect it to computer using micro USB cable. Note that you’ve installed the Motorola USB drivers on your computer so as to detect it when connected. The download link for Motorola USB Drivers is given in the Pre-Requisites section.
Step 5: Now open the fastboot folder which you’ve just downloaded and extracted. Then hold Shift button on the keyboard. By holding Shift button just right mouse click on an empty space. You’ll see a list of options from which select Open command window here option. This will launch the command prompt window on your computer.
Note: For Mac/Linux OS you need to launch Terminal window.
Step 6: Now type the following commands in the command window and press enter:
fastboot oem get_unlock_data
For Mac OSX:
./fastboot-mac oem get_unlock_data
sudo ./fastboot-linux oem get_unlock_data
Note: Here I am doing all the steps to Unlock Bootloader using Windows OS.
Step 7: As soon as you hit enter you’ll see some random code as shown below:
Step 8: Now you need to copy this code. For that right mouse click in the command window and select Mark option.
Then select the code and press Enter. As you hit enter the code will be copied.
Step 9: Now paste this code in Notepad or any Text document.
Step 10: Delete the (bootloader) from each and every line.
Step 11: Then again Copy the code and go to this Motorola bootloader unlocking website. As you enter the website you may have to sign up for an account or you can also sign in with your Google account.
Step 12: When you see Step 1 page, scroll down and click Next.
Step 13: On the Step 2 page, scroll down and paste the earlier copied code in the point 6. Arrange the code in one line by deleting every white space in between.
Step 14: After deleting the empty space hit the ‘can my device be unlocked?’ option. This will verify the eligibility of your Motorola Android smartphone whether it is unlockable or not.
Step 15: If your Motorola Android phone is unlockable, a Request Unlock Key button will appear at the bottom. So tick the I Agree option and click on the Request Unlock Key button.
Note: After requesting the key, you’ll receive an email along with the unlock key at the email address you used to log in.
Step 16: Check your email, you’ll receive a message some what like this:
Step 17: So copy the unlock code from your email.
Step 18: Then, in the command window type the following command and hit enter key:
fastboot oem unlock Unique-key
For Mac OSX:
./fastboot-mac oem unlock Unique-key
For Linux / Ubuntu:
sudo ./fastboot-linux oem unlock Unique-key
In place of ‘Unique-key’ paste the code which you’ve just copied from your email. Refer the screenshot given below.
Step 19: As soon as you hit Enter, your Motorola Android smartphone will get unlocked! You can confirm the same from the fastboot mode as shown below.
Step 20: Your Motorola phone will automatically reboot itself. That’s it! You’ve successfully unlocked the bootloader of your Motorola Android Smartphone.
After unlocking the bootloader, the Motorola M logo will get replaced by a Warning message.
You can restore the M logo by following the steps given below:
Step 1: Download and extract this logo.rar file in the fastboot folder mentioned above. You’ll see a logo.bin file after extracting.
Step 2: Then launch the command window and type
fastboot flash logo logo.bin command to flash this file.
That’s it! This will remove the unlock bootloader warning message completely.
Good Job! You’ve successfully unlocked the bootloader of your Motorola Android Smartphone. You are free to root your phone, flash those unofficial custom recoveries, custom ROMs and kernels etc. If you come across any difficulty while implementing the steps mentioned above then don’t hesitate to inform me. Just drop your problem in the comments section and I’ll help you out. Till then Enjoy! 🙂