LineageOS: How to install and update your phone’s Android

Successor to CyanogenMod, a famous custom operating system project for Android, LineageOS has inherited the important mission of bringing updates to old cell phone models.

Since its launch in December 2016, the project has launched customized versions of the Android system (also known as ROMs) for different brands and types of devices, accumulating millions of users worldwide.

Risks and benefits of LineageOS

The reason for LineageOS ‘success is given by the huge range of new functions and customization options of the interface, in addition to the possibility of trying new versions of Android on old models. What also draws attention is the set of measures aimed at user security and privacy, which have their credibility reinforced by the system’s development format, in open source.

However, there is a major barrier to adoption that prevents some users from enjoying the benefits of the system: the need to perform a process of “unlocking” the Recovery Mode of appliances – which should not be confused with Root. The procedure, if done incorrectly, can cause inconvenience or even permanent disuse of the device.

Also for this reason, cell phone manufacturers determine that the process could invalidate the warranty benefits of the handsets – thus justifying the launch of LineageOS for older models.

Bootloader warning unlocked on cell phone. (Source: GizDev / Reproduction)Bootloader warning unlocked on cell phone. (Source: GizDev / Reproduction)Source: GizDev

In this context, if the user has a mobile phone or tablet that is compatible with the ROM, the TecMundo prepared an uncomplicated guide to guide you through the process. See how:

Steps for installing LineageOS

The LineageOS installation process goes through 3 steps performed in Windows 10 PowerShell: dunlock the Bootloader, install Custom Recovery Mode and finally, iinstall the ROM. Make sure that you meet all the requirements and then carefully read all the steps before taking them.

Heads up: O TecMundo is not responsible for any damage caused to the device or the invalidation of its warranty.


Before starting, it is crucial to gather all the files that will be used during the process to avoid any problems. Ahead, you will need a computer to help progress through the steps – Windows 10 will be the platform of choice in this guide.

The installation of LineageOS requires the following requirements, which must be downloaded depending on the model of the device:

  1. LineageOS official ROM. You can find it on the official website;
  2. GApps, the suite of Google apps, including the Play Store. It can be found in the official repository. Recommended version Stock for most users;
  3. Custom Recovery Mode (Recovery Mode), necessary to properly install the files. The guide will use the TWRP, which can be found on the official website;
  4. Installation files for tools ADB, FastBoot and Drivers from the device to the PC. It is possible to find the tool files in the official repository, while device drivers must be downloaded from the manufacturer’s official website, according to their model;
  5. It is recommended to perform a Backup of all data on the device, as the process permanently deletes them;
  6. The device must have its battery fully charged before starting the process;

After downloading the items, separate them into a new folder and rename the files RLineageOS official OM, GApps and TWRP for “lineageos”, “gapps” and “twrp”, respectively, without changing their file formats – this step will be essential in the following steps. Ahead, extract the installation file for ADB and FastBoot tools directly at the root of this folder. If done correctly, the result should resemble the image below.

Folder with the necessary files for the installation of LineageOS. (Source: Adriano Camacho)Folder with the necessary files for the installation of LineageOS. (Source: Adriano Camacho)Source: Adriano Camacho

Then, you must enable the option USB debugging on the candidate’s cell phone or tablet. It can be found in the secret “Developer Options” section, within the “Settings” application. To enable it, just follow the path “About phone> Software information” and tap “Build number” repeatedly. After successful notification, the section should appear next to the others listed in the application.

Unlocking the Bootloader and installing custom Recovery Mode

In this step, you must unlock the device’s Bootloader using the Windows PowerShell program and install the new Recovery Mode. To proceed, connect the phone to the computer using a USB cable, authorize the debugging request and carefully follow the steps below:

Notice: do not disconnect the phone from the computer during the process. In addition, the commands must be entered without quotes and refer precisely to the files renamed in the previous topic. Confirm everything before you start.

  1. Open the folder with the required files and right-click while holding the Shift key, ahead, select the option “Open PowerShell window here”;
  2. Type the command “adb reboot bootloader” and press Enter to restart the phone in bootloader mode;
  3. Then, type “fastboot oem unlock” and hit Enter to request the unlock, which must be authorized by the cell phone using the volume buttons to navigate and the “On / Off” button to confirm;
  4. Type “fastboot flash recovery twrp.img” to start installing the new recovery mode;

Installing LineageOS

Finally, in the last step, the LineageOS ROM will be installed. Now, it will be necessary to perform the complete formatting on the cell phone and then load the installation files to its memory. To continue, select the Recovery option on the phone and confirm using the “On / Off” button.

The interface TWRP will open and can be operated by tapping the screen. Ahead, one must:

  1. Select the option Wipe and then, Advanced Wipe. Select options Dalvik, System, Data and Cache and confirm the formatting process by sliding the bar at the bottom of the screen;
  2. In PowerShell, type: “adb push / sdcard” and hit Enter to load the ROM file into the phone’s memory. Right after, type “adb push / sdcard” and hit enter to load the Google Apps file;
  3. Back on the phone, return to the TWRP main menu and tap Install. Then, select the option Select Storage and choose Internal Storage, right away;
  4. Next, select the file “” and choose Add more Zips to add the “” file. Just slide the bar at the bottom to start the installation;
  5. At the end of the process, the cell phone will be restarted and will display the initial configuration screen if it was successful;

It is worth mentioning that it is important to carry out a thorough research on the availability of the method and ROM for the desired device before attempting the procedure at home.

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