How to Root Android 4.1 Jelly Bean on Galaxy Nexus

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Google rolled out the first preview version of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean yesterday to the lucky I/O attendees who were given a Galaxy Nexus. They all are running on the Android 4.1. We knew, it wouldn’t have been long before that build gets out on the Internet and every Galaxy Nexus user will be able to download/install Jelly Bean on their phone.

Root Android 4.1 Jelly Bean is already available now. You can root Galaxy Nexus on Android 4.1 to gain full file system access and be able to use your favorite root apps i.e Titanium Backup. Most of the custom ROMs we wrote about earlier all have root access from before, but in case you are on the official build and want to root — continue reading below.

Disclaimer: All the tools, mods or ROMs mentioned below belong to their respective owners/developers. We (TeamAndroid.com) or the developers are not to be held responsible if you damage or brick your device. We don’t have you on gun point to try out this tutorial ;-)

Make sure you have installed all your USB drivers for the Samsung Galaxy Nexus to connect it with the computer. Download Samsung Galaxy Nexus USB drivers! Apart from just the USB drivers, there are a few more things that you need to take care of.

1. You need to enable USB debugging mode. This helps to connect your Android phone with the PC. See here: How to Enable USB Debugging.

2. Your phone battery should be 80-85% charged. If your phone goes off suddenly because of battery, during flashing ROMs or installing mods and updates — your phone might go dead permanently. See here: How to Check Battery Percentage.

3. Backup all your important data that you might need as soon as your flash a new ROM, or make a backup for just in case, you never know when anything might go wrong. See below on how to backup data:

4. Your phone should be factory unlocked. Additional instructions for locked Android devices will be added in the tutorial for unlocking devices.

Now, let’s proceed with the tutorial below and root Galaxy Nexus on Android 4.1 for full system access.

HOW TO: Root Galaxy Nexus on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

We have put together a detailed step-by-step instructions guide on how to root Android 4.1 Jelly Bean on Galaxy Nexus. If you are used to installing custom ROMs on your Galaxy Nexus, or rooting other Android phones/devices, then this should not be any different for you.

Just To Remember:

  • This root method is only for Android 4.1 (JRN84D) on Galaxy Nexus (I9250, maguro) and I am not sure if it will work on the other variants of the Galaxy Nexus on other carriers.
  • My phone has CyanogenMod recovery installed. Please make sure you have this recovery!
  • Make a Nandroid backup of your previous phone set up before proceeding – for just in case anything goes wrong.

Complete Step-By-Step Instructions:

Step 1 - Download CWM-SuperSU-v0.92.zip for Galaxy Nexus on your PC, if you haven’t already.

Step 2 - Connect and mount your Galaxy Nexus USB memory on your computer using the USB cable.

Step 3 - Now copy/paste the CWM-SuperSU-v0.92.zip file to your SD card. Make sure the file is in the SD card root.

Step 4 - Then turn off your phone.

Step 5 - Now to get in the bootloader mode. Turn on the phone while pressing and holding the Volume Up + Volume Down and Power buttons.

Step 6 - Follow the navigation instructions on the screen. Press Volume Down twice and you should now see RECOVERY on the screen. Press the Power button to confirm/select.

Step 7 - Assuming you have ClockworkMod recovery (and not any other custom recovery), scroll down to “flash zip from SD card” and press the power button to select it.

Step 8 - Press the power button again and select “choose zip from sdcard”.

Step 9 -Now using your volume keys, navigate to CWM-SuperSU-v0.92.zip and select it using the power button. Confirm the installation on the next screen and the installation procedure should start now.

Step 10 - After the installation completes, go to “+++++Go Back” and reboot the phone by selecting “reboot system now” from the recovery menu. The phone will boot now and it might take about 5 minutes to boot on your first time. So, please wait.

That’s it! Your Galaxy Nexus is now rooted and you can download rooted apps and use them on our phone. we suggest, start with ROM Manager.

To make sure you have correctly installed the above root method and it’s working, verify with Root Checker as given in the link.

Have fun playing with it! If you have any issues, please fire them up in the comments below!

If you’re still not interested in trying out Jelly Bean (Android 4.1) on your phone, try some alternatives:


  • Michael

    I can’t get the root to work following these instructions.

    I did first try installing SU in this manner. It did not work, so after some searching, I saw that SuperSU was recommended for 4.1.

    After following these instructions, still no root access according to root checker.

    How can I remove SU and SuperSU and try again?