The Nexus 4 has been launched and now users that want to customize their devices need to unlock its bootloader before that. Use the instructions that I've listed in this post and learn how to successfully flash the required files on your brand new smartphone.

The bootloader unlocking process is required by users who wish to flash custom ROMs, kernel and any other files so that they will improve and customize their Nexus 4 so that it will suit their needs. You should know that by unlocking the bootloader your phone will lose all data and files, including the ones stored on the Internal SD card. Make sure that you backup all your files before starting the unlock process.

Here's what you need to know before moving to the tutorial:

  • Flash the unlocking files only for the Nexus 4 smartphone. Do not attempt to use them with any other Android device.
  • The PC needs the Android SDK from HERE. It will install the adb files for your smartphone and this will help your PC to recognize your device.
  • Make sure that you backup all your data files. Unlocking the bootloader will remove all the files stored on your Nexus 4, even the Internal SD card ones.
  • Enable USB debugging option from the Developer Options. Note that these options are hidden in Android 4.2 and you will have to open Settings, then About device and after that you have to tap 7 times on the Build Number section.
  • Charge the phone's battery before starting to apply the tutorial steps.
  • Do not blame us in case you lose any data or the phone doesn't work after unlocking its bootloader.
  • Use the guide only if you're an advanced user.
  • In case you cannot complete the unlock process, then you should leave a detailed comment at the end of this post and we will look into it and offer a solution.
  • Don't skip any steps listed in the tutorial

These were all the guidelines you had to read prior to unlocking your phone's bootloader. Now that you know all that, move to the next part of this article.

How to Unlock Nexus 4 Bootloader:

  1. Download the Fastboot file HERE.
  2. Extract the contents of the zip file and place them in a folder called 'Fastboot'. Save it on your PC desktop screen.
  3. Power off your LG / Google Nexus 4 device. Boot it into Fastboot mode by pressing at the same time the Volume down and Power buttons. When the screen shows the "start" text, release the buttons.
  4. Connect your Nexus 4 to your PC using the USB cable. Windows will install now all the required drivers.
  5. Go back to the 'fasboot' folder. Press 'SHIFT' button on your PC keyboard and while doing that you have to right-click on the white space of the Fastboot folder. Choose 'open command window here' option from the context menu. Windows 8 users should launch the Command Prompt window by right-clicking on the bottom-left part of their screen and select "Command Window prompt (admin)" and after that point CWD window to the location of Fastboot folder.
  6. Enter the following lines in the command window prompt that will unlock the bootloader for your Nexus 4:
    • fastboot devices - it should detect the device ID for your phone. If it doesn't then you should re-install the drivers.
    • fastboot oem unlock - this will unlock the bootloader for your Nexus 4. Confirm that you want to do that.
  7. Now the Nexus 4 will restart and it will boot into normal mode. The bootloader has been unlocked.

The tutorial is now complete. Now you can install new custom recovery images and any other modification file on your smartphone.

In case you want to re-lock the Nexus 4 bootloader follow the steps below:

  • Repeat the entire tutorial until you reach step 6.
  • Enter 'fastboot oem lock' instead of the 'fastboot oem unlock' command.
  • The phone will restart and it will boot with a locked bootloader.

These are all the instructions that I had for you and now you should start using your phone. Also, make sure to tell us in comments how is your Nexus 4 running with a custom ROM and if you found any errors while using it.

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