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How to Easily Test Firefox OS on Google Nexus 5

Android OS is great, as you can anytime download and install various apps, whether we are talking about games, books, tech-field dedicated software and so on. Also, the Android OS is stable and comes with great features and capabilities that are ensuring a great user experience on both tablets and smartphones. And, if you are using a Nexus branded device, such as LG Google Nexus 5, your smartphone will receive all the latest updates and OS improvements. But, if you want to test something else instead in order to check what is new on the market, now you can do so by easily installing Firefox OS on your Google Nexus 5.

As strange as it might appear, Firefox OS on Google Nexus 5 can be a real thing. Of course, Firefox OS is currently available only for limited devices, but thanks to those of xda-developers, now you can test this new mobile platform on your own LG Google Nexus 5. As already mentioned, you can complete this operation just for fun, for testing something new, or for checking if Firefox OS has a future, or it will be just another epic failure – competing against Google, Microsoft or Apple isn’t easy.

This ported version of Firefox OS has been made available for Nexus 5 from a while, but until now the ROM has been buggy and somehow inappropriate so it couldn’t be flashed for daily use. But, now we have a stable firmware that comes with all the Firefox OS features, apps and capabilities, which will smoothly run on the Google Nexus 5. According to those who have already tested the custom ROM, Firefox OS on Nexus 5 still has some issues, as the software sometimes runs with lags and there are several force close errors reported. So, the best will be to flash the ROM, test it for a while and then return to your Android 4.4.3 KitKat system.

In that matter we will be showing you how to make things right, so before applying something on your phone read all the guidelines from this tutorial. As you will see, installing Firefox OS on Google Nexus 5 is not that easy, though you will not have to use third party apps, or risky procedures for completing this operation. Basically you will flash the ROM by using some ADB commands which means that you will be applying a typical operation – if you are an advanced user who is used with these types of operations, you have nothing to worry about (at the same time, if you are a newbie, don’t worry as you will find every detail you need during the lines from below).

Now, as you can already tell, this is an unofficial operation that has nothing to do with Google. Basically you will install a custom ROM that is ported from the stock Firefox OS. Due to same reasons, by completing this operation, you will lose the Google Nexus 5 warranty. Furthermore, completing this guide is possible only if you previously root your smartphone, so before going any further ensure that root access is being achieved.

Moreover, since you will have to go back to Android OS eventually, it is important to make a Nandroid backup before installing the Firefox platform. In that matter first you will have to flash a custom recovery image, like CWM or TWRP recovery, on your LG Nexus 5. Furthermore, it will be also a good idea to backup your personal data, info and accounts along with your contacts list, call logs, market apps, internet settings, text messages, images, videos, audio files and everything else you might need afterwards (your data might get wiped out during the update operation). The backup can be completed by using compatible apps from Google Play or by following compatible tutorials (use our how to section in the matter).

Since this is a manual installation guide, a computer will be required, while a connection between your Nexus 5 and your computer will have to be established at some point. Due to same reasons, on your phone you need to enable the USB debugging option by going to “menu – settings – developer options”. Then, on your computer you have to temporarily deactivate the security protection because the antivirus-like programs might interfere with the flashing procedure. Also, your phone must be charged, because if it gets turned off in the middle of the installation process, it might also get bricked. It is important to know that this tutorial is compatible only with the Google Nexus 5 – don’t install Firefox OS by using this step by step guide if you own a similar or different Android based device as you can soft brick your handset.

How to Easily Test Firefox OS on LG Google Nexus 5

  1. First of all, on your computer install Android SDK and Fastboot: install Android SDK on Windows or set up ADB on MAC OS X / Linux.
  2. Then, download the Firefox OS package from here.
  3. Install Google USB drivers on your computer or else you won’t be able to complete this guide.
  4. Unzip the update package on your desktop and copy all the resulted files on the “platform-tools” folder within Fastboot.
  5. Now, navigate through the same “platform-tools” folder and from there open a command prompt window (press and hold keyboard shift key while right clicking on any blank space).
  6. Connect your Google Nexus 5 with your computer by plugging in the USB cord.
  7. In the cmd window type “adb reboot bootloader” and press enter in the end – your smartphone will now reboot in bootloader mode.
  8. Up next, in the same cmd window type: “fastboot flash system system.img”, “fastboot flash boot boot.img”, “fastboot flash userdata userdata.img” and “fastboot flash cache cache.img”.
  9. After that, within cmd, type “fastboot reboot-bootloader”.
  10. In the end reboot your device and remove the USB cord as you are done.

So, there you have it; that’s how you can anytime test Firefox OS on your LG Google Nexus 5. Now, if you want to restore Android OS on your device, just use the Nandroid backup file through your custom recovery image – just enter recovery mode on your Android device and use the “backup / restore” option.

If you have questions or if you have something to share with our team or with our readers, don’t hesitate and use the comments section from below in that matter – of course, we will assist you as soon as possible.

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