How to Install TWRP Recovery on Android without Root

You don't need root permission to install TWRP recovery on Android. Here's how to do so.

Install Twrp Android Featured

TWRP stands for Team Win Recovery Project and is an open-source recovery software for Android devices and handsets. TWRP allows the user to save, install, back up, and restore firmware on a device without having to worry about ruining the state of the device when rooting, flashing, or installing new firmware on an Android device. Here we’ll show you how to install TWRP on your Android phone without rooting.

Note: you don’t need to root your device to install TWRP, but you will need to unlock the bootloader, which will erase all the content on your device. Also the method for unlocking the bootloader is different for each device, so your mileage will vary.

Download and Extract Android SDK Tools

Before installing TWRP, you will need to install the Android SDK tools. On that page, if you just want the command line tools instead of the whole Android Studio (which takes up quite a lot of space), click “Download options” then select the package that corresponds to your operating system from the “Command line tools only” section of the Android developer website.

Install Twrp Without Root Command Line Tools Only

After downloading, extract the command line tools to a location of your choice.

Download the TWRP Image that Corresponds to Your Device

Install Twrp Download

You’ll need to download the TWRP image that matches up with your device. You can find a full list of available image files on TWRP’s website.

Unlock Developer Options, Enable USB Debugging, and Enable OEM Unlocking

You will need to unlock the developer options on your phone. To do this, go to “About” phone in the Settings app of your phone. You’ll need to tap on “Build number” seven times before being granted access to the developer options.

Install Twrp Without Root Build Number

From your Android settings, tap “System -> Advanced -> Developer options -> USB debugging”. Hit OK.

Install Twrp Without Root Usb Debuggin

Next, look for “OEM unlocking” in the Developer options menu and select this option.

Install Twrp Without Root Oem Unlocking

The device will prompt you to key in your security code and will state that unlocking the bootloader will disable the device protection feature. This allows you to unlock the bootloader at the beginning of the device startup. In most cases, unlocking the bootloader will delete the data from your device, so make sure to backup all files, images, data and settings you want to keep.

Connect Device to Computer

Connect your device to your computer via a USB data cable. When connecting your device to your computer, you may be prompted with a message asking to allow USB debugging, if so tap “Always allow from this computer” and tap the OK button.

If these prompts don’t show up, then you’re probably using a regular USB charging cable rather than a data cable and will need to find a cable that works.

Install TWRP via the Command Prompt

This will vary depending on your operating system, but you will need to launch a command prompt in the folder you installed/extracted your Android SDK tools to. You’ll also need to place your TWRP image file in this folder.

In the command window, type:

adb devices

then press Enter. Your device will be listed.

twrp-command-window

Next, type the following command to reboot your device into bootlader/fastboot mode:

adb reboot bootloader

Next, run:

fastboot flash recovery twrp-3.6.X-XXX.img

You’ll have to make sure to replace the version of TWRP in this line of code for the one that corresponds to the one that you need to load onto your device.

Finally, run the following line of code:

fastboot reboot

With that step completed, you’ll be able to boot up your device using the TWRP custom recovery and use its features.

Booting into TWRP Recovery

This is another thing that will vary from device to device, but usually there is a key combination that needs to be carried out by users to place their devices into recovery mode. For example, some devices require that you press the power and volume up buttons while they are off to boot into the TWRP recovery.

Maybe you want to go a step further and root your Android device? We have you covered. As a followup to that, here’s how to check whether your Android phone is rooted.

Robert Zak
Robert Zak

Content Manager at Make Tech Easier. Enjoys Android, Windows, and tinkering with retro console emulation to breaking point.

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