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Update Google Nexus 4 with CM 11 M1 Custom ROM Firmware

Have you heard? The new CyanogenMod 11 system has been made available and now the same can be installed on the LG Google Nexus 4. I am talking about the Android 4.4 KitKat based Milestone 1, aka CM 11 M1, firmware which is finally out. So, if you are tired of the pure Android UI and want to try something better instead, complete this guide and learn how to easily flash CM11 M1 software on your Nexus 4.

As you know, since we are talking about a Nexus device, the LG Nexus 4 had already received the Android 4.4 KitKat touch. Also, the handset just received a new OTA from Google as the Android 4.4.1 OS has been released. But as I have mentioned above, this is the pure Android experience that comes only with stock features, apps and capabilities. So, there might be users who will be interested in testing another platform, a platform that is stable and smooth and that comes with extra capabilities that can be used for improving the performances.

Of course I am referring to CM 11 M1 firmware which is now available for your Google Nexus 4. This variant of CM11 is still based on Android 4.4 KitKat but brings important new features and bug fixes to the previous release of CyanogenMod. Anyway, with this new custom ROM you will be able to enjoy a redesigned Android user interface that brings more customization and optimization options and possibilities. Furthermore, with CM11 M1 you can enjoy an improved web browsing experience along with upgraded speeds and performances, all thanks to the extra features and capabilities that cannot be found on the default version of Android 4.4 OS.

Furthermore, with Milestone 1 release of CM 11 you will be able to save some battery power on your Google Nexus 4 and this while receiving even more power than you was used to. How is this possible? Well, CM11 has been optimized especially for your Google Nexus 4 in term of both performances and design. Because of that, on the installation procedure the ROM will have to access and change some in built programs and tools that are being pre-installed on your LG Nexus 4. As you can already tell, this access can be provided only via root.

So, it should be clear for you that for being able to complete this tutorial, rooting the Nexus 4 isn’t an option for you. Don’t worry as you can easily unchain the system of your phone by using a dedicated step by step guide – just click on the link from above for having access to the same. Be careful though because when rooting the binary flash counter is increased. That’s why, your Google Nexus 4 warranty will get void on the process. For restoring the warranty you will have to revoke root, or to restore your handset to initial state – you can do that by re-flashing the stock Android 4.4 KitKat firmware.

Also, for being able to install CM 11 M1 firmware on your Google Nexus 4 a custom recovery image must be installed. I recommend you to use or choose CWM or TWRP recovery and no other custom recovery because CM11 works better with the mentioned tools. CWM recovery is the most popular custom recovery that is available for the Android system, while TWRP recovery represents the touch version of the same. Also, the custom recovery will be used on the flashing operation so you can’t go any further without installing the same.

After rooting and installing CWM / TWRP recovery on your Google Nexus 4 you can safely flash CM 11 M1 Android 4.4 KitKat OS on your device. But, for avoiding the unpleasant situations, first I recommend you to read and apply the pre requisites from below.

First of all, use the recovery image which you have installed earlier for making a Nandroid backup. With a Nandroid backup you can easily save and also restore the current ROM. Do this because CM 11 M1 is still a custom and not an official Android 4.4 based software. Because of that, maybe you will not like the new platform on your Nexus 4. If that happens you will probably want the old ROM restored – with Nandroid backup that is possible without using a complex tutorial like the present one. Also make a general backup because a wipe will be required – without the wipe CM11 can be installed.

In order to complete a full backup operation (for your contacts, messages, call logs, internet settings, market apps and so on) I recommend you to use free distributed apps from Google Play. After applying the update you should make sure that a computer can be used on the flashing operation. Then, on the same computer you might want to temporarily disable the security protection because in rare cases the antivirus tools are interfering with the installation procedure.

On the same time, installing CM 11 on your Nexus 4 will require a connection between your smartphone and your computer. Because of that, on your phone the USB debugging option must be enabled – go to “menu – settings – developer options”. This is a manual update operation so the best will be to charge your device before going any further; if your handset has less than 50% power left it might get turned off in the middle of the installation procedure and if that happens you will risk in bricking your phone.

The present step by step guide is compatible only with the LG Google Nexus 4; this version of CM 11 M1 (Milestone 1) is suitable only with the mentioned phone and should be installed only on the same. If different – if you use the steps from below for flashing the Android 4.4 KitKat firmware on a different device – you will end up in bricking your Android based tablet / smartphone.

How to Update Google Nexus 4 with CM 11 M1 Custom ROM Firmware

  1. The first thing you need to do is of course the download process- get the required files.
  2. So, download the CM 11 M1 firmware for your Google Nexus 4 from here.
  3. Also download Google Apps package from here – Google apps are not included on the update package.
  4. Save these files on your computer without unzipping anything.
  5. Up next, connect your phone with your PC via USB cable.
  6. Transfer the downloaded files from computer on your phone.
  7. Disconnect the devices by unplugging the USB cable.
  8. Turn off your smartphone.
  9. Wait a few seconds and then reboot your Nexus 4 in recovery mode.
  10. First, from recovery mode wipe the data and clear the cache.
  11. You can wipe the data by selecting “wipe data factory reset”.
  12. You can clear cache by choosing “wipe cache partition” and “wipe dalvick cache”.
  13. Now return to recovery mode menu.
  14. And select “install zip from SD card” followed by “choose zip from SD card.
  15. Select the CM11 firmware file from your Nexus 4 and install the Android 4.4 software.
  16. Then, similar install Google Apps package on your handset.
  17. When the installation procedure ends, go to main menu of recovery and select “reboot system now”.

If you are experiencing any kind of problems, or if you can’t use CM11 properly, use our dedicated tutorial that will easily take you through the troubleshooting process: “how to resolve common Android issues”.

Also, if you want to restore your old firmware, you will have to go back to recovery mode. From there you need to select the option dubbed as “backup / restore”; follow the prompts and restore your favorite Android 4.4 OS.

Congratulations, you have successfully installed Android 4.4 KitKat based CM 11 M1 custom ROM firmware on your LG Google Nexus 4. So, our work is done for now. All you have to do now is to test the new software in order to see how it performs on your Nexus device. In case you notice something bad, like bugs or things that aren’t working properly, use the comments field from below and share your impressions with our team and with other users too.

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