How to Install OTA update on a Rooted Device

Unable to install OTA update on a rooted device? Well, you just can’t. No matter what you try. The reason is — an OTA update doesn’t accepts a system that has been modified, and hence it refuses to install. The only way to get around this is getting the stock system back on your device and then install the OTA.

And when we say a stock system, that also includes the stock recovery. If you’re thinking unrooting the device via SuperSU would do, then that’s also not possible since there still will be some modified system files on the device that the OTA won’t accept.

So your only way to install an OTA update with Root is installing the full stock firmware back on the device.

Now installing stock firmware isn’t same for all devices. Every manufacturer has its own way of installing stock firmware on their devices, like Samsung uses its own proprietary software called Odin, LG has its own Flash Tool, Sony too has a FlashTool, Motorola has RSDLite, HTC has RUUs for each device and Nexus devices come with factory images flashable via Fastboot. And these are just the tools for the major Android manufacturers, but Android is a big world and there many more devices from various manufacturers with different solutions for installing stock firmwares (you may have to use Google for more info).

Resources for Installing Stock Firmware

Below are some resources for the popular manufacturers/devices to install stock firmware, so that you can install an OTA update.

Google Nexus devices

Google Nexus devices are one of the easiest to install the stock firmware. Google provides fastboot flashable factory images for all of its Nexus devices and for all Android versions ever released for them. You can get these factory images at the link below, along with a detailed step-by-step flashing instructions:

[icon name=”hand-o-right” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] Nexus devices factory image downloads and installation instructions

Samsung Devices

Installing stock firmware on Samsung devices is easy as well. You just have to download an Odin flashable .tar file of stock firmware for your device model number and flash it using Odin.

Below are links to two site that have the largest database of stock firmwares for all Samsung devices. Download firmware for your device model number from these resources and then follow our instructions guide to install the firmware using Odin.

[icon name=”download” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] Firmware download resources: SamMobile  |  Samsung-Updates

[icon name=”hand-o-right” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] How to Install Stock Firmware using Odin

Sony Xperia Devices

Installing stock firmware on Sony devices is easier too. A custom tool called FlashTool is available for Sony Xperia devices that lets you flash stock Xperia firmwares that come as a .ftf file. There’s a nice tool called XperiFirm to find and download .ftf firmware for Sony Xperia device. Below are links to both the tools:

[icon name=”download” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] Download XperiFirm

[icon name=”download” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] Download FlashTool for Sony

Motorola devices

Motorola has an architecture very close to Nexus devices for bootloader, and hence also has a very similar way for installing stock firmware. You’ve option to use either RSDLite, a Motorola-distributed software to flash stock firmware OR you could tear open a stock firmware, get the .img files for all system partitions and manually flash each partition via Fastboot (or mfastboot.exe) like Nexus devices.

[icon name=”download” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] Download Motorola Firmware

[icon name=”download” class=”” unprefixed_class=””]  Download RSDLite

[icon name=”hand-o-right” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] How to Install Motorola Stock Firmware using RSDLite (Just check the step-by-step guide to understand how to use RSDLite to flash firmware, ignore everything else on the page)

HTC Devices

HTC provides the easiest of all method to install stock firmwares. Stock firmware for HTC devices come as a RUU (Rom Upgrade Utility) which is a standalone click based installer with a firmware pre-packaged into it.

For HTC users from USA, HTC has a page to download latest available RUU for all the devices released in the country along with installation instructions.

[icon name=”download” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] HTC RUU Download page (official)

[icon name=”download” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] Download HTC RUUs (unofficial, large database)

LG Devices

We personally find LG devices hard to install a stock firmware, but maybe that’s because we’ve had less experience with LG devices. Anyway, LG stock firmware come as .kdz files and can be installed using LG Flash Tool. The resource for both firmware download and Installation instruction is the best you can find on the interwebs for LG devices.

[icon name=”download” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] Download LG Stock Firmware

[icon name=”hand-o-right” class=”” unprefixed_class=””] KDZ firmware installation guide for LG Devices

That’s all the info we’ve for installing stock firmware on Android devices from most popular manufacturers. We may update this post with links and resources for more devices, but isn’t the purpose of this page. All you need to know is that to install an OTA update on a rooted Android device, you need to install a stock firmware on the device first. Now, if we haven’t provided info for your device manufacturer, do a Google search. You’ll most definitely find useful results.

If you’ve any info to add to this page, let us know about it in comments section below.

Happy Androiding!

Posted by
Shivam Malani

Shivam is our resident designer and web developer who also enjoys writing. He loves to meditate, drive on the freeways and hunt for snipers during his Call Of Duty playtime. Email:


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