26
Jul
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Note: This is an adaptation of my Nexus 4 update/root post, so it has some duplicate content, but all the instructions and images are specific to the Nexus 7.

Android 4.3 was officially unveiled and released yesterday to the Android Open Source Project. In a surprisingly timely fashion, Google also released both the factory images and OTAs to the Nexus 4, 7, 10, and the Galaxy Nexus.

In this post, I will show you how to easily update your Nexus 7 to Android 4.3 JWR66V without losing data or needing root, whether because you are having trouble flashing the OTA, because one is simply not available to you yet (these notoriously take weeks to propagate to everyone), or because you're running something else and want to return to stock. You can root your Nexus 7 in the last step if you want.

One Android 4.3 feature that the Nexus 4 doesn't have is restricted user profiles. Once you flash 4.3, you will be able to create new users as restricted, like I have below. It doesn't look like you can edit existing users and convert them to restricted ones, however. Bummer.

wm_Screenshot_2013-07-25-00-13-09 wm_Screenshot_2013-07-25-00-15-55

Disclaimer: Android Police isn't responsible for any harm to your device - proceed at your own risk.

Prerequisites

In order to complete the steps below, you need to have the Android SDK installed. The SDK contains the latest version of adb and fastboot, which you will need for flashing. You will also need a MicroUSB cable to execute adb sideload, fastboot flash, and other commands. You don't need a USB cable if you're just planning to download the OTA zip directly to your device and flash it from recovery.

Note #1: You will not lose your data in either scenario. The first one is the same as applying the OTA. In the second one, we'll skip wiping data and upgrade just the bootloader, radio, kernel, and system images manually.

Note #2: You will be able to easily gain root in the last step.

Scenario 1

In this scenario, you're running Android 4.2.2 JDQ39 and haven't modified the system files, which basically means you can cleanly apply the OTA update without getting any errors. If you get errors and can't fix them or run a custom ROM, move on to Scenario 2.

In order to avoid repeating the steps, download the official JDQ39->JWR66V OTA zip from here for the nakasi Wi-Fi version or here for the nakasig 3G version and then adb sideload it by following my earlier guide here. If something fails, try to fix it by restoring the system files you've changed or proceed to Scenario 2.

Update #1: The OTA file for the 3G Nexus 7 (nakasig) has been discovered now.

Update #2: nakasi JDQ39B->JWR66V.

Note: To flash the update via adb sideload, you don't need to unlock the bootloader and have your data wiped if yours is still locked .

nexusae0_wm_IMG_20121009_124956 nexusae0_wm_IMG_20121009_125353

adb sideload is painless and fast

Scenario 2

Scenario 2 is what I would call plan B. You're here because the OTA failed, you screwed up your device and it's not booting, you're not on 4.2.2 JDQ39, or you're running a custom ROM. Don't worry - you won't lose data, even though the default factory image installation method (the bundled flash-all script) does wipe it.

The idea of this method is:

  1. Download the full nakasi factory image (Wi-Fi only Nexus 7) or nakasig factory image (3G Nexus 7), which include the full system, bootloader, recovery, kernel (boot.img), and radio (radio only included for the 3G variant). It's a clean slate for these components - they'll flash cleanly over anything you have now.
  2. Instead of using the bundled script called flash-all, you will unpack the tgz (tar/gz) archive, and then the zip contained within as well. This will put all the components into one folder:
     image
  3. Follow the excellent guide over here and make sure to omit step D10, which overwrites userdata. While the guide is for the Nexus 4, it's very detailed and applies just as well to the Nexus 7. Note: Only the 3G Nexus 7 has a radio you need to flash. For the Wi-Fi version, you will see no radio. Here are the correct commands you will be executing, for reference:
    adb reboot bootloader
    fastboot flash bootloader bootloader*.img
    fastboot reboot-bootloader
    (ONLY nakasig 3G Nexus 7) fastboot flash radio radio-tilapia-1231_0.18.0_0409.img
    (ONLY nakasig 3G Nexus 7) fastboot reboot-bootloader
    fastboot flash system system.img
    fastboot flash boot boot.img
    fastboot format cache
    fastboot reboot

Note: Instead of unpacking the image*.zip and flashing system and boot manually, you can actually do fastboot update image*.zip - this won't delete data (you would pass a -w flag if you wanted that to happen), but it will re-flash recovery back to stock if you were running a custom one. You can then flash it back, or just use the commands above instead. Either way, the result will be the same.

20130725_000345

Bootloader in fastboot mode

Rooting

Rooting a Nexus 7 is very easy but requires an unlocked bootloader and a custom recovery. I recommend using TWRP.

  1. Flash TWRP from here (fastboot flash recovery FILENAME.img).
  2. Reboot into recovery (adb reboot recovery or hold Power+VolDn, then select Recovery).
  3. Flash SuperSU from this post. I've seen some people complain that doing so via CWM doesn't work, but flashing through TWRP and selecting Fix Superuser Permissions at the end does the trick.
  4. You should be rooted.

Enjoy 4.3 and don't forget to see what's new!

Artem Russakovskii
Artem is a die-hard Android fan, passionate tech blogger, obsessive-compulsive editor, bug hunting programmer, and the founder of Android Police.
Most of the time, you will find Artem either hacking away at code or thinking of the next 15 blog posts.

  • Roberto Stefanini

    So just to make 100% sure. Scenario 1 Will not void my warranty or prevent me from updating OTA in the future if a new version comes out? It is basically the same as to update when you click on software update?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      Neither of them will. After you're done with whichever method you pick, you will be 100% stock outside of recovery, bootloader unlock status, and root if you chose to root.

      • Roberto Stefanini

        k will try it now thanks.

  • http://www.gizmoninja.com/ Tabe

    My WiFi N7 is unlocked and rooted, no custom ROM though. Do I still follow Scenario 2?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      You should be able to use scenario one safely, as long as it doesn't fail on integrity checking all the files it needs to patch. If it does, it'll abort, and then you can either figure out why it did that or just do step 2.

      • CasperTFG

        Artem, nice to meet you. Sorry to bug you but, will you be posting a tutorial on upgrading to 4.3 on a stock/locked N10 for owners not preferring to wait for the OTA?

        I searched and only found a 4.3 ROM from XDA. I'm looking for the OTA equivalent.

        • Mario J

          Just follow the same directions for method two here, but make sure to download the N10 factory image, obviously ;)
          The key is to not flash the userdata.img; that's the one that will wipe you data.

          • CasperTFG

            An officer and a gentleman. Thank you.

      • RCCola85

        Exactly right, my update kept failing and upon close inspection I realized it was because it was attempting to patch Currents and I, of course, erased that app long ago. All I had to do was redownload Currents, convert it to a system app AND make sure it was named Currents.apk (not com.google.currents whatever) and the update worked as advertised afterwards. Guess I'll just disable it this time.

  • sergio velasquez

    thanks for the help , updated 2 of my devices with this

    thanks

  • mgamerz

    You screwed up your tablet* not phone.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      Whoops.

  • Daniel

    What should the MD5 of the Wi-Fi Version update package in scenario 1 be?

    • jazzruby

      9b13c34df5490dc3bb42507025421291

      Also the filename (1st string of numbers) is the SHA1 sum

  • bigknowz

    If anyone is having a problem unpacking the tar, I made zips of the images. Had to split into 2 files because all together it was too large for Dropbox.
    https://www.dropbox.com/sh/jve716nep6esatw/-LqtOm_B6P/nakasi

    • bigknowz

      Not sure why, but I got stuck in bootloop on initial install. Reflashed bootloader and all good.

    • shah white

      is it the zipped image u have made :

      included 'android-info.txt' ?

      included 'android-product.txt' ?

      i have problem in :

      scenario 2 :

      Note: Instead of unpacking the image*.zip and flashing system and boot manually, you can actually do fastboot update image*.zip - this won't delete data (you would pass a -w flag if you wanted that to happen), but it will re-flash recovery back to stock if you were running a custom one. You can then flash it back, or just use the commands above instead. Either way, the result will be the same.

      *where the result i get :

      archive does not contain 'android-info.txt'
      archive does not contain 'android-product.txt'
      error: update package has no android-info.txt or android-product.txt

  • Brendan Owens

    I decided that after so much use with modding and tweaking, it was time for a fresh start. I did a clean install of 4.3, as most of my important files are in the cloud. I love the feeling of a completely clean file system, but just give it a few weeks :D

  • jazzruby

    The update pkg has "Hangouts" system app, does this replace "Talk"?

    Also there's a new "Shell" APK with a Min/Target SDK/API level 18 - 4.3 JB MR2

    • xnifex

      yes, hangouts replaces talk.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      Then Play Store Hangouts entry literally goes out of its way to tell you.

  • Casin

    How do I flash the zip from recovery? Do I need to do any wipes?

  • saltyzip

    Where are you hiding file, me need you?
    "nakasig 3G version (link coming soon, whenever it surfaces)"

    • sbeaulieu

      Here is the link for the 3G version from Google : https://developers.google.com/android/nexus/images#nakasigjwr66v

      • saltyzip

        I don't think that is the OTA update?

        • sbeaulieu

          Oh.. no i was thinking that you wanted the image to manually upgrade it.

          • abby725

            what Janice answered I didnt even know that a person able to profit $8774 in one month on the internet. did you look at this link w­w­w.K­E­P­2.c­o­m

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      It's in there now.

  • Daniel

    If anyone wanted to know I found the md5 for the Wi-Fi version update package should be 9b13c34df5490dc3bb42507025421291

    • jazzruby

      Also the filename (1st string of numbers) is the SHA1 sum

  • zak

    guys is anyone missing wireless display in settings???????
    this is really odd because i had it on 4.2.2

    thanks

    • saltyzip

      Wasn't it under the more option, I can't see that option either on my Nexus 4 (4.3)?

      • zak

        not on my nexus 7 ???

  • Alain Lafond

    Cool, I don't know if I'm the first in my city (Montréal, Canada). But as for now, I did it without unlocking, without rooting. Using the sideload method.... IT WORKS... Got it... 4.3...
    Thanks to the poster...
    Sure gonna explore that sideload option, for the future.

    • sbeaulieu

      Im from Montréal too and i got it yesterday

      • Alain Lafond

        Really, I tried and tried... Nothing, cool for you... I had to do it the nerdy way... Coool...

  • Bariman43

    Got sick of waiting for the OTA since Nexus owners were supposed to get updates immediately, so I did the other thing Nexus devices are famous for, and that was this. Everything runs great.

    • xnifex

      Google is now doing staged rollouts, so that's why there's a delay.

      • someone755

        No sarcasm intended, can you explain in detail what 'staged rollouts' mean? Still not getting anything, classic nakasi, middle Europe... And I'm not rooting or adb-ing it (doing some battery tests because the battery charges really slowly)...
        Or perhaps you might tell me I'd the battery charging rate has increased for you?
        Excited about the update, disappointed it's taking so long...

        • xnifex

          staged rollout means they rollout the update in stages over time - some say a couple of weeks. So you may not be part of the first wave.

          I haven't received the update yet & haven't done the process in this post just yet so I can't comment on any of the changes.

          • someone755

            Well why doesn't Google just push the updates to everyone at the same time? It's roughly a bi-annual event, would it really kill them?

          • xnifex

            that's the million dollar question - you'd have to ask google. they used to do a mass rollout.

          • someone755

            Wow, I just got it 2 minutes ago :D What if there actually IS a mass rollout, we're just being told there isn't?
            I mean, the whole world got the update in less than 48 hrs (if not, 3 days should be enough).
            Anyways, downloading as we speak, hope you get yours soon :D

          • xnifex

            I may hold off on upgrading. I want to see if there's a way to load an older version of Google Talk & Youtube since the newer versions kinda suck.

  • Péter Szentkirályi

    Is there anyone who has recieved the OTA update for Nexus 7 without rooting/adb/whatnot? I have not seen anyone reporting neither here, nor on reddit or XDA.

    • Stanislav Gruzdov

      Looks like only Nexus 7 WiFi-only 8Gb model (nakasi) had an OTA in the wild. Still no signs of 3G's OTA.

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

        It's up now.

    • Morrissex

      I got the OTA for my 3G today, like 1 hour ago.

    • Thomas

      I got it today, it rocks. Faster. One bug: cant download from playstore :-(

  • DarkRain

    Thank you Android Police! It's great, the tablet is so much faster now (especially if you are now used to the laggy 4.2.2).

  • Nagzo

    After flashing the files my nexus is stucked on the nexus logo. Please assist. Reflashed but no luck

    • Semlie

      Same issue here.

      Was coming from 4.1.1

      • Isaias

        First you have to make sure you are coming from 4.2.2 JDQ39 or JDQ39B if you are going to use scenario 1 else try "wipe cache partition" in recovery screen

        • Semlie

          I used scenario 2 since "you're not on 4.2.2 JDQ39". Anyway, was long overdue for upgrade. I just didn't want to start from scratch so I tried "dirty flashing" which obviously didn't work out so well.

          I just finished setting up (well about 85-90%) after a wipe and install of CleanROM.

  • Morrissex

    It worked for me on CWM. Just make sure you install SU's ".zip" first and then update it from Google Play.

  • Chris

    I wasn't constantly mashing my update button this time. Got my update as I was about to connect to a TeamViewer client on my Nexus 7.

    I wouldn't have been able to flash 4.3 anyways due to my laptop being in the shop for hardware repairs.

    http://imgur.com/IcuGwrw

    • Chris

      DicePlayer and MX Player appear to be incompatible now, as expected.

      Emailed and informed the DicePlayer dev for a soon to be update to resolve the incompability issue with 4.3

  • William Donald Morton

    I updated my Nexus 7 with 4.3 but it still doesn't send meta data to my bluetooth deck. Looks like I am not updating my Galaxy Nexus with it until AVRCP 1.3 is really implemented. :(

  • Dipeen

    Will there be a different OTA for Android 4.2.2 JDQ39E build ?

  • Sandeep Roy

    Nexus7 #Android 4.3 OTA done using Stop GSFramework method, in 6 attempts.

    • someone755

      Mine done in 12 hours and over 50 attempts. Got it at 11 pm, CET...

  • rajul gupta

    Got 4.3 Ota Update on my Nexus 7.

  • Skyfire-FR

    [FRENCH HELP MESSAGE FOR LOST USERS]
    Guide d'installation pour les amis un peu perdus dans ce monde du root :

    1- Téléchargez SuperSU v1.43 (http://download.chainfire.eu/342/SuperSU/UPDATE-SuperSU-v1.43.zip )

    2- Téléchargez une ROM de recovery (ici, TWRP 2.6 : http://techerrata.com/get/twrp2/flo/openrecovery-twrp-2.6.0.0-flo.img )

    3- Placez le ZIP de SuperSU dans la mémoire interne.

    4- Bootez TWRP depuis votre appareil en l'ayant aussi transféré dans la mémoire interne (ou via WugFresh's Nexus Root Toolkit, qui télécharge la ROM et peut la booter)

    5- Sélectionnez "Install", trouvez votre ZIP, sélectionnez-le et faites le "Slide to flash".

    6- Redémarrez votre appareil en mode normal, il est normalement rooté.

    Pour ceux qui désirent utiliser une autre ROM, je pense que vous possédez assez de connaissances afin de vous débrouiller, ce guide étant présent pour les utilisateurs moins adeptes de ce genre de manipulations.

  • John Daniel

    Just managed to trigger 4.3 OTA on my 3G Nexus 7 in the UK. Had to stop Google Framework services and clear data about 5 times before it found it.

  • Isaias

    You don't have to have the android sdk , it also works with the nexus 7 driver which you can grab from the asus page

    • someone755

      All you need are drivers for adb and fastboot (adb not that much) plus the drivers for the device.
      All together, it shouldn't be over 20MB, compared to the gigabytes the sdk needs...

  • someone755

    Wait, am I missing something or do unlocked bootloaders not get ota updates? Or just not with the GSFramework trick? Reading some of these comments here, I've forgotten the basics...

  • Eric Vaughan

    Stock 16GB WiFi Nexus 7, literally just out of the box. Tried adb sideload and got this:

    Installing update
    Warning: No file_contextsassert failed: file_getprop("/system/build.prop","ro.build.fingerprint") =="google/nakasi/grouper:4.2.2/JDQ39/573038:user/release-keys" ||
    file_getprop("/system/build.prop". "ro.build.fingerprint") = = "google/nakasi/grouper:4.3/JWR66V/737497:user/release-keys"
    Installation aborted

    Any ideas?

    • someone755

      Are you on 4.2? The ota is meant to replace files in 4.2, not 4.1. (Seeing as most n7s come with 4.1...)

      • Eric Vaughan

        Yea it was definitely on 4.2.2 out of the box. Not sure what the issue was. I unlocked the bootloader and when I started back up, I was prompted with the 4.3 OTA, so that worked out well :)

        • someone755

          Yay! I'm seeing improvements everywhere! So maybe I don't really need a new tablet after all... :D

          • Eric Vaughan

            I kind of agree. At least for now. Will use this one until Christmas when the new Nexus 7 will hopefully drop in price and I'll give this one to my kids :D

          • someone755

            Nah, I just bought mine this February, so... I guess I just wait for the N73, or maybe a future N10, to make a change.
            Or maybe I shouldn't have bought the 'old' 7, but rather waited for this new one. Meh...

  • someone755

    Umm, anyone else gets an error when playing Tegra 3 games? Trying to get Puddle THD to run, no luck... Says that only Tegra 3 devices can play the game...

  • Alberto Bonsanto

    This guide isn't too explicit and I feel it very incomplete for the risk to break you device.

    • someone755

      You can't break it, and if you do, it's an easy fix. Of you could wait for the GSFranework trick to start working for you :P

  • randana

    #copied from the comments given in one of the links, worked in first attempt for my friend and I.

    NO NEED TO DO IT SO COMPLICATED GUYS here
    1. Go to Settings -> Apps -> All

    2. Find Google Services Framework.

    3. Tap on Force Stop.

    4. Select Clear Data.

    5. Head back to the Nexus 7’s Settings, go to About, and check for a System Update.

    6. If it didn't find update, just repeat everything from 1. ( I've got the update on 5th repetition, friends on 3rd and 8th=)

    • someone755

      Also to note; There must be an update available for a server near you. If it isn't, you can try this infinite times, but it won't work. But if there is, you should get it in 8 or less ;)

      • Anonymous

        Worked for me too. Took 2 tries.

    • John Huie

      what if i am on paranoid android? i'll have to push it over using the above method to get to 4.3, right?

  • Adil Qamar

    My root isn't working

    • someone755

      SuperSU and Superuser suck. They aren't yet optimized for 4.3, because some changes have been made to the zygote process, so root isn't allowed to those two apps. Use Koush's Superuser and everything will work. :D

  • devin

    if you want to flash the ota i found this in the commets in one of the links. just go to settings/apps/all and go down till you find google services framework and force stop it then clear data. then try to find the update again and it works. i did it 3rd try.

  • yonro

    My nexus 7 is rooted but boot loader is still locked should I use scenario 1?

    • someone755

      If it's completely stock, then yes.

    • sadicologue

      I'm on the same situation, did it work with scénario 1 for you??

  • Zoja Pawlowska

    Upgrade worked fine, but not rooting. Not TWRP (does not go to recovery) not CWM (infinite loop in recovery red android). So my Nexus 7 although with JWR66V build, but PPP widget does not get root access and is not working. Do you have an idea ?

    • someone755

      Flash TWRP again?

      • Zoja Pawlowska

        I tried openrecovery-twrp-2.5.0.0-grouper.img and that complain on the version . Than back 2.6 version, which makes the tablet get stuck, when choosing recovery from bootloader menu. Any solutions ? I need it rooted to use pppwidget.

        • someone755

          Gurl, have you tried Fastboot flashing the recovery? And then adb sideload the SuperSU zip? Works fine for me...

          • Zoja Pawlowska

            The problem is to get to recovery mode. Following your recommendation : fastboot flash recovery openrecovery-twrp-2.6.0.0-flo.img
            adb reboot recovery
            (or manually) Nexus gets stuck with Google and a picture of 'open lock' on its screen.
            I have noticed that "the excellent guide here " recommends different command for flashing : fastboot boot openrecovery-twrp-2.6.0.0-flo.img
            and after
            fastboot reboot-bootloader
            when choosing recovery mode appears red exclamation mark on android green picture.
            Pressing power+VolUp does not help , only blank screen without any menu .
            adb sideload UPDATE-SuperSU-v1.43.zip
            gives
            error: closed
            even command: adb devices - recognizes device correctly.
            What proper fastboot command should be, BOI ?

          • someone755

            Gurl, I'd flash a factory image if I were you. Looks to me like there's a bad piece of info in your recovery partition.

          • Zoja Pawlowska

            OK, including user data, right BOI ?

            2 questions: 1)Is SuperSU-v1.43.zip already included in openrecovery-twrp-2.6.0.0-flo.img, and it needs only additional update (by sideload) ?
            2) which one is correct:
            fastboot flash recovery openrecovery-twrp-2.6.0.0-flo.img
            or
            fastboot boot openrecovery-twrp-2.6.0.0-flo.img (as recommended in
            http://forum.xda-developers.com/showpost.php?p=34552123&postcount=1) ?

  • Randana

    My Play store stopped working after getting the ota update on my nexus 7 3g, and so does for a friend of mine on his nexus 7 wifi. Anybody else having the same problem?

    • Thomas

      I have the same problem. Does anibody knows how to remediate it?

    • someone755

      Delete all your connected Google accounts on the tablet, clear the play store and the play services data through settings, reboot, and login again :D Hope it helps!

  • Kenneth

    I can sideload the factory image I got from Google but everytime it reaches the 100% it starts to do things like veryfying the package. But after 'Veryfying package...' it always stops and says 'Installation aborted...'. Any solution for this? I've done nothing special with my Nexus (Wi-fi version) like unlocking bootloader and rooting.

    • someone755

      I thought installing a factory image required an unlocked bootloader. In fact, it does! At least that's what Google's download site says...

  • randana

    After updating to android 4.3 on my nexus 7 3g, am not able to contact the play store server and hangouts and keep. It is not even showing on the web play store! Is anyone experiencing the same issue?

  • Robert

    Thank you as always AP!

  • msuri

    I was on a rooted unlocked bootloader but stock 4.2.2 OS and used the instructions above and landed up with the persistent X with my N7 refusing to boot. Had to subsequently do a factory reset to get the N7 to boot to 4.3. Lost my user data though mostly everything appears to be working.
    I made sure I used the wifi only images, but the 'more' settings show an entry for Mobile Networks so there is something wrong somewhere. How can I again flash 4.3 in this scenario? Any suggestions?

  • Misscduk

    My 3g is not working after upgrading to 4.3, my nexus 7 just says no service or mobile network unavailable (and I can get full signal on my phone- orange network) Any ideas please? ?

    • HomOmaha

      Hey I get the same problem after updating. DO you know how to fix it?

  • DerAstar

    Hmm flashalble via CWM too

  • James

    I have a 4g/LTE + WIFI Nexus 7. Which file do I download?

  • jonjennings

    Thanks - this was a big help to me getting my "4.2.2 and consistently fails on attempts to install the 4.3 OTA update" 2012 Nexus updated.

    One issue I found following the instructions (and it may be the reason OTA updates had failed for me about half a dozen times) was there's apparently two versions of "4.3" out there for the 2012. Different builds and different bootloaders but with the same version number.

    The latest (at time of writing) is JWR66Y. The bootloader from this would always fail to write for me, giving a "FAILED (remote: (InvalidState))" error. Grabbing the bootloader from JWR66V installed fine and then I could install the system & boot files from JWR66Y.

    I guess this shouldn't come as a surprise to me given that my 2013 Nexus 7 has been through 3 different software versions in the week I've had it & still says "4.3"

    Further words on the issue are here: http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2417097

    • Kie

      I know this is an old post but thank you. This has solved so many of my problems. Spent so long googling the issue, but this here has finally been the fix to my issues. Thanks again.

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