How to Update the Verizon Galaxy Nexus with MIUI Custom ROM

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After having to wait a couple of months for the official updates, the Verizon version of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus has finally received the IMM76K Android 4.0.4 ICS update. This was considered good news for the users who still keep their Galaxy Nexus stock, but for the other people out there who have decided to try out the benefits of custom ROMs, it was just a whisper in the wind. Up until now you may have been excused for not hearing of Cyanogen Mod, but after its latest iteration which bears the number 9, this will no longer be the case. And while most of you know what Cyanogen Mod 9 means, the second most appreciated custom ROM family out there is the one named simply: MIUI.

The goal of this article is to provide you with an easy and secure way of updating your Verizon Samsung Galaxy Nexus to the MIUI custom ROM. As you might know, the version of the Galaxy Nexus sold by Verizon is not the same as the international one, so if you own the i9250 model please do not follow the lines below.

Before we start the actual guide, there a couple of words we would like you to understand, and we have summed them up in a disclaimer note: This software is not our creation so we must warn you that you cannot hold us responsible for any damage that might occur to your device by following the procedures in this guide. However, we will try to help you sort out any glitches or problems that might arise by following the steps in this guide to the extent our knowledge limits us. By going past this point in our guide you have accepted and understood the terms above.

With this mind we can now safely move on to the first part of our guide, the part that covers the very important aspect of your personal data. As you might know, installing any custom ROM on an Android device implies losing all the personal data stored on it, which includes contacts, messages, internet settings and so on. Fortunately, there are some third party apps and procedures out there which can help you both save and restore your data after the update, and in case you are wondering, the official Backup App provided with the smartphone does not recognize any custom ROMs out there. Please read the following list to see what apps and procedures we will be using:

  • Text messages – We will back them up with the following application : SMS Backup & Restore
  • Phone Contacts – You can simply synchronize them to your Gmail account or export them to the micro SD card as a .vcf file
  • Call Log – We will use the following application to back up your call log: Call Log Backup and Restore
  • Pictures, Music, Videos, and other files – Simply copy them to your microSD card.
  • Internet & MMS Settings – Write down all the settings from this path “Applications > Settings > Wireless and Network > Mobile Networks > Access Point Names”

Now, after securing your personal data it is time to move on to some requirements that your Verizon Galaxy Nexus must meet in order to minimize the risks of the updating procedure. We strongly advise you to read and do the necessary steps below as they are nothing more than simple safety requirements:

  • The first and most important one is that is that you need to have a rooted Verizon Galaxy Nexus i515 in order to successfully install the MIUI custom ROM.
  • The second critical requirement is that you must have the Clockwork Mod Recovery already installed on your Verizon Galaxy Nexus i515.
  • The last, but equally important aspect is that you must charge your Verizon Galaxy Nexus i515 to at least 50% of its battery capacity or preferably to full battery capacity. If your device runs out of power during the update procedure, things may turn out badly for it as there is a high risk it will be bricked.

There are all the requirements needed in order to almost guarantee a perfect update, but you can never call a piece of software perfect and flawless regardless of its maker. Anyway, we can now move on to the last part of our guide, where you will actually apply the MIUI custom ROM update. In order to do so all you have to do is follow the next steps in order and be very careful not to skip any of them or not to click on any unnecessary things.

  1. We will begin the last part of our guide by downloading the necessary software, in this case: The MIUI Custom ROM Firmware Package. After downloading this package please save it to an easy to reach place on your PC, such as your Desktop folder.
  2. In step number two, you will have to copy the previously downloaded package to the root folder of your Verizon Galaxy Nexus’s memory. Make sure not to place the file in any additional subfolders, as you will have a harder time finding it later. We also advise you to use the original USB cable that came with your Verizon Galaxy Nexus.
  3. Now, in step number three, you will have to power off your Verizon Galaxy Nexus and reboot it into bootloader mode. The easiest to do this you need to press and hold the Volume Up and Volume Down Keys and then simoultaneously press the Power Key. Once in the bootloader mode, you will simply have to select the Recovery Mode option and then simply wait for the Clockwork Mod Recovery to load after which you will be able to proceed with step four.
  4. In step four, you will have to do a nandroid backup of your device. This particular type of backup is simply put an image of your working smartphone, and in case you will need it later, you will simply have to restore it to get a fully functional device with your current settings. In order to do this backup you will need to select the following from the main menu of the Clockwork Mod Recovery: Backup and Restore -> Backup. After the backup is done please return to the main menu of the recovery.
  5. In this next step, number five, you will be applying the actual update, so please make sure not to select the wrong options from the Clockwork Mod recovery. So, in order to update your Verizon Galaxy Nexus i515 to the MIUI custom ROM you will have to select the following: Install zip from sd card -> Choose zip from sd card. After doing so you will have to navigate to the MIUI Custom ROM Firmware Package Zip file that you have placed in the root folder of your Galaxy Nexus’s internal memory card earlier and select it. The updating process will start after selecting the right file.
  6. In the last step you will just have to wait for your Verizon Galaxy Nexus to apply the update since the procedure should not take more than 10 minutes. After it is finished you will have to return to the main menu of the Clockwork Mod recovery and select the Reboot now option in order to start up your device in the normal way.

We will warn you that the first boot after applying the MIUI custom ROM update will take a while longer than usual, and in some cases it may even take more than 10 minutes. If however your Galaxy Nexus fails to start after the 30 minute mark you should consider that the update has failed. In this case you will have to take out and then reinsert your Verizon Galaxy Nexus’s battery and restart the guide above from the last part. If you still can’t get it to work try restoring the nandroid backup made earlier and write us a line in the comments section below.

If on the other hand, everything went according to plan, you should now have a Verizon Galaxy Nexus running on the latest version of the MIUI custom ROM. Rest assured, as this version of MIUI is based on the latest Android 4.0.x Ice Cream Sandwich ROM from Google, so you will benefit from all the bug fixes and improvements made in it. Let us know if you like this operating system more than the vanilla Android 4.0 ICS that comes with your stock device in the comments section below.