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Update 2012 Google Nexus 7 WiFi with OmniROM Android 4.4 Nightly

OmniROM team has released the first Nightly KitKat custom ROM for your Nexus 7 2012. Use this guide and you’ll learn how to successfully update your tablet without bricking it.

This is a custom ROM that has been recently built by Xplodwild, Chainfire and Dees_troy, all three of them are recognized XDA members and developers. These OmniROM builds are also receiving tweaks form other contributors and you should know that these are based on AOSP Android 4.4.

Besides the stock KitKat features you will also get new features such as multi-window, multi-workspace support, per-app permissions control, new non-obtrusive incoming call alert, flippable quick settings menu and others more. If you want to learn more about this release then you can use the developing team’s web site here. Also, there are many small tweaks added to the visual UI so that you’ll experience even a smoother KitKat.

Since this is a Nightly build, then you should know that you will have to install it only for testing purposes. Nightly builds are usually released on a daily basis and with each new version you will get a better and more stable OS. Install it at your own risk. Here’s what you need to know before starting the installation:

  • Use this guide only with the 2012 variant of Google Nexus 7 WiFi.
    – don’t attempt to update any other Android tablets or smartphones with the files you find here.
  • Your tablet has to be on an unlocked bootloader, rooted and running the latest CWM Recovery image.
    – without these you cannot flash any new custom ROMs.
  • For the installation to complete successfully you will need to apply a Factory Reset for your device, this means that you will lose all data stored on your installed applications.
    – the internal storage won’t be affected by the Factory Reset process.
  • Backup data from installed applications using the Helium tool from Google Play — link here.
  • Backup SMS and APN Internet Settings using the following tools for Android: SMS backup & restore | APN Settings Backup & Restore.
    – root access is needed for this tutorial.
  • Sync your Contacts info with your default Gmail account, so that you won’t lose any important data in the process.
    – guide here for those who don’t know how to do it.
  • Enable USB Debugging from Developer Options menu.
  • Make sure not to skip the step that tells you to create a full NANDROID Backup for the ROM that is currently installed on your device.
    – that process will create a restore point for your tablet, one that can be used in case your device doesn’t boot in normal mode.
  • Use this tutorial if you’re an advanced user, do not skip any steps and make sure to read the entire post before starting the update.
  • Check the phone’s battery power and make sure that the charge level is over 50%.
    – this will prevent your device from switching off in the middle of the updating process.
  • In case you cannot complete this tutorial, then you can ask for more help in comments.

Now that you know all of the above, continue to the next part of this post. Remember that this custom ROM is in its development stages and you might find some errors while using it. Install it at your own risk, as we cannot be blamed in case you brick your tablet or lose any important data in the process.

How to flash OmniROM Android 4.4 Nightly for 2012 Nexus 7 WiFi:

  1. Download the custom ROM zip from here.
    – get the latest version.
  2. Download Gapps for this ROM from here.
  3. Connect your tablet with your PC using the USB cable.
  4. Move both zip files to your tablet’s internal storage.
    – disconnect the device from PC when both files are copied.
    – make sure not to unzip the files.
  5. Power off the tablet.
  6. Now, boot it into CWM Recovery Mode.
  7. First, use the custom Recovery Mode to create a full NANDROID Backup for the currently installed ROM:
    – select ‘backup and restore’, save the file and then continue to the next step.
  8. Next, apply the Factory Reset for your tablet:
    – select ‘wipe data/ factory reset’, then confirm this process.
    > this step shouldn’t be skipped, as otherwise the tablet might not boot with the new ROM.
    > you can skip this step only in case the device already sports a previous official OmniROM KitKat Nightly build.
    > if you skip the step, but the tablet doesn’t boot with the new ROM, then you will be forced to repeat the entire tutorial once again.
  9. Now you can finally start installing the new custom ROM:
    – select ‘install zip from sdcard’, then ‘choose zip from sdcard’
  10. Find the OmniROM Android 4.4 Nightly build and confirm its installation.
    > don’t press any buttons until the install process is complete.
  11. Next, you have to repeat step 9 and install the Gapps zip too.
  12. After the ROM and the Gapps files are flashed, return to the main custom Recovery screen.
  13. Reboot your tablet in normal mode now.
    > the first boot process takes several minutes to complete, which is why you should wait until all files are loaded successfully.
  14. Enter your Google Account details when the home screen appear in order to take control once again over your 2012 Nexus 7.

I think that these were all the steps that you had to take and now you can begin to test the brand new custom ROM.

Note that in case the new OmniROM Android 4.4 Nightly OS doesn’t boot in normal mode after the install is complete, then you should repeat the entire tutorial once again. Make sure not to skip any steps that I’ve listed above.

In case you cannot complete the guide, then you should ask for extra help in comments, as we will try to come up with viable solutions for you to use.

If you don’t like the new ROM or in case your tablet is lagging with the new custom ROM, then you can always restore it to its previous ROM. The restore process only applies in case you created a NANDROID ROM Backup at step 7.

Google Nexus 7 Articles