How to Unlock the International Galaxy Nexus I9250 Bootloader

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With all those Ice Cream Sandwich updates available everywhere you look at, is really hard not to try to apply one on your device. Whether we are referring to the officials, unofficial, beta firmware or even custom ROMs, the latest version of the Android platform is waiting just to be grabbed by us. But, things are not that easy; in order to be able to update a smartphone you must first complete other operations with its internal system. One of these processes is learning how to unlock the bootloader and in today’s step by step guide we will be checking in how to do the same for the International variant of the Galaxy Nexus I9250 handset.

So, for updating the Galaxy Nexus, you must first unlock its bootloader. Also, this will be required if you want to root, install a custom recovery image or flash a custom ROM. As you can see this is the first step to do if you want to take full advantage of your device, or if you want to power up its performances. Unlocking the International Galaxy Nexus I9250 Bootloader should be an easy task to do, but only if you follow a tutorial that is showing you what and how to manage the situation. Else, you can wreck the phone’s system and of course, we don’t want that to happen.

A bootloader or more common, bootstrap loader is a piece of code that runs before any operating system is running. Without this small program the OS cannot be loaded into the RAM and ROM memory. Also, the bootloader is used to boot other operating systems too and usually each device comes with a different bootloader installed. So, don’t try to apply this procedure for other similar Android powered devices. Furthermore, the bootstrap loader contains commands for debugging and/or modifying the kernel environment, being essential for the good functionality of your Nexus I9250.

Now it’s extremely important to know that you can complete this procedure only if you have a Galaxy Nexus that isn’t network locked. If different you will wreck it. Unfortunately, the warranty will get void, so be sure that you are reading and performing all carefully. If you are not comfortable with this aspect maybe it will be better to stop here. You can regain the warranty only if you decide to relock the bootloader.

Then, backup your International Galaxy Nexus for preventing loosing personal info stored on the phone’s internal storage memory. The contacts, messages, Market apps, calendar info and so on might get erased, so make sure you save them. As a recommendation, you can follow the links from below:

Finally, take note of the next Pre Requisites, which of course must be completed before starting unlocking the bootloader.

  • Ensure that the phone has minimum 60% battery power left.
  • The Firewall from the PC and from the handset must be temporarily uninstalled / disabled.
  • Enable the USB debugging option from your Nexus. Go to: “Settings -> Applications -> Development -> USB debugging”.
  • Don’t apply the step by step guide if you have a network locked Galaxy Nexus; root the phone first.

Now that we have cleared things up, you can go to the next section of this tutorial. Make sure you do all as explained and don’t skip any of the following lines.

How to Unlock the International Galaxy Nexus I9250 Bootloader

  1. First, download ADB from here and place the same to the computer.
  2. Install ADB.
  3. Download fastboot from here and place the file to the same folder as ADB. Or, unzip fastboot to the same folder as ADB.
  4. Take your handset and connect it to the computer by using the USB cord.
  5. On the PC open command prompt by clicking on Start, then type run and then cmd. In the end tap on enter.
  6. In the cmd window type the command: “adb devices”.
  7. If there is nothing displayed it means that you must reinstall ADB and restart the procedure.
  8. Then, on the same cmd type: “adb reboot bootloader”, hit enter and then type: “fastboot oem unlock”.
  9. On the phone you should see a prompt that notice you that you are about to unlock the bootloader. Go and tap on “yes” for starting the process.
  10. That’s it; you have now an International Galaxy Nexus I9250 with an unlocked bootloader.

If somehow the operation gets interrupted, you must redo the steps from the beginning. Also, don’t worry as you will still be able to receive OS updates from Google, an unlocked bootloader doesn’t mean that you have installed a custom ROM into the system (this is something you will have to do by following a different step by step guide). Anyway, tell us if there were issues during the operation and we will try to help you through.

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