• Introducing XDA Computing: Discussion zones for Hardware, Software, and more!    Check it out!

Question PIXEL 5a Stable Build Available

Search This thread

evnStevn

Senior Member
Feb 21, 2015
194
66
50
Inverness
Google Pixel 6
If you haven't already, you should be receiving a notification that the Stable Android 12 or "S" Build is lurking in the shadows of your Pixel 5a handset. If you're currently on the (only) beta version we received OTA, your update won't inconvenience you for too long, as it weighs in at <4 mb, all in.🙄

Safe Journey's...evnStevn
 

Attachments

  • Screenshot_20211019-171733.png
    Screenshot_20211019-171733.png
    195.6 KB · Views: 70

CarinaPDX

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2013
260
90
Google Pixel 5a
The factory images are up on Google's developer site, and when I tickled the system update found the 12 upgrade. I'm downloading the factory image now (for rooting with Magisk) then will upgrade to 12. Then more to learn...
 
  • Like
Reactions: evnStevn

naterz

Senior Member
Sep 21, 2010
86
9
The factory images are up on Google's developer site, and when I tickled the system update found the 12 upgrade. I'm downloading the factory image now (for rooting with Magisk) then will upgrade to 12. Then more to learn...
Attempted the upgrade last night, seems there's some new things required if you want to flash the modified boot image and successfully boot. I believe you need to wipe the data partition and also pass along a few flags during install. However, temp root is an option if you want to avoid that for now (I did) by simply booting the image in fastboot vs flashing it. Just FYI!

Edit. Sounds like SafetyNet won't pass yet if you do end up going the permanent route? I could be wrong but I believe that's what's I've read. I just checked on mine and the temporary boot image does seem to so that's good.
 
  • Like
Reactions: grandpajiver

CarinaPDX

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2013
260
90
Google Pixel 5a
If you read this thread you will see how to do it, as done on beta releases. https://forum.xda-developers.com/t/guide-flash-magisk-on-android-12.4242959/ It is possible to achieve permanent root on 12 without wiping the personal data but it is a delicate dance. I have not tried it yet but as I understand it the process is to unroot 11 and at least remove Magisk modules, take the 12 update, boot into bootloader and use fastboot to remove boot verification and replace vbmeta.img, then flash patched boot.img, reboot and reinstall magisk. It seems there is a problem with just flashing the new factory image with the wipe option (-w) removed. Instead of fastboot flashing the patched boot.img it is also possible to directly patch the boot.img from Magisk while temporarily booted from the patched boot.img (via fastboot), again after removing the verification checks. It may be critical as to when the 5a is rebooted or not; it needs to have a normal reboot after the OTA upgrade in order to complete the upgrade, then boot to bootloader for fastboot operations. I am going to go back and make instructions for myself before proceeding, and will do a Titanium backup before doing anything else.

Edit: it appears that some have achieved permanent root and still passed the SafetyNet check. IIRC it was done through the OTA upgrade path but I need to check that. If you are willing to wipe your data then just installing the factory image and then doing the fastboot commands it might work but that is not clear. Too many attempts at root and SafetyNet failed while flailing so hard to know right now if there are good alternatives to OTA.
 
Last edited:

michaelc5047

Member
Mar 17, 2011
16
2
If you read this thread you will see how to do it, as done on beta releases. https://forum.xda-developers.com/t/guide-flash-magisk-on-android-12.4242959/ It is possible to achieve permanent root on 12 without wiping the personal data but it is a delicate dance. I have not tried it yet but as I understand it the process is to unroot 11 and at least remove Magisk modules, take the 12 update, boot into bootloader and use fastboot to remove boot verification and replace vbmeta.img, then flash patched boot.img, reboot and reinstall magisk. It seems there is a problem with just flashing the new factory image with the wipe option (-w) removed. Instead of fastboot flashing the patched boot.img it is also possible to directly patch the boot.img from Magisk while temporarily booted from the patched boot.img (via fastboot), again after removing the verification checks. It may be critical as to when the 5a is rebooted or not; it needs to have a normal reboot after the OTA upgrade in order to complete the upgrade, then boot to bootloader for fastboot operations. I am going to go back and make instructions for myself before proceeding, and will do a Titanium backup before doing anything else.

Edit: it appears that some have achieved permanent root and still passed the SafetyNet check. IIRC it was done through the OTA upgrade path but I need to check that. If you are willing to wipe your data then just installing the factory image and then doing the fastboot commands it might work but that is not clear. Too many attempts at root and SafetyNet failed while flailing so hard to know right now if there are good alternatives to OTA.
Thanks for the link. I downloaded the full Android 12 image, installed it, disabled verity and wiped my data via fastboot, then flashed the magisk-patched boot. Worked like a charm and safetynet passed after hiding Magisk and installing Riru and the universal-safetynet-fix.
 

CarinaPDX

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2013
260
90
Google Pixel 5a
Thanks for the link. I downloaded the full Android 12 image, installed it, disabled verity and wiped my data via fastboot, then flashed the magisk-patched boot. Worked like a charm and safetynet passed after hiding Magisk and installing Riru and the universal-safetynet-fix.
I am hoping to avoid wiping data by taking the OTA and then rooting - I just need to find the time to backup and write down the process first. I knew that the update could be done directly with the factory image, then rooted, but that requires the data wipe. If I encounter a problem that is the fallback approach - then restore data with Titanium.
 
  • Like
Reactions: BlvckSensei816

CarinaPDX

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2013
260
90
Google Pixel 5a
You don't "keep your root" on 11 updates; you unroot, take the OTA, then root again with a newly patched boot.img. And the data isn't wiped when moving to 12 if done through the OTA, just like 11 updates. If flashing a factory image the data is always wiped. What is different with 12 is that there is a verification of the boot.img and this has to be turned off (because the boot.img is patched), with a single fastboot command. It does appear to be sensitive to some details, so best to have a detailed procedure written down before starting the process. But those that have done it do not report a long or difficult process - just a finicky one.
 
May 18, 2020
13
1
You don't "keep your root" on 11 updates; you unroot, take the OTA, then root again with a newly patched boot.img. And the data isn't wiped when moving to 12 if done through the OTA, just like 11 updates. If flashing a factory image the data is always wiped. What is different with 12 is that there is a verification of the boot.img and this has to be turned off (because the boot.img is patched), with a single fastboot command. It does appear to be sensitive to some details, so best to have a detailed procedure written down before starting the process. But those that have done it do not report a long or difficult process - just a finicky one.
Ok ...have you done it yet?....can you tell me your process or elaborate more to my understanding
 
May 18, 2020
13
1
You don't "keep your root" on 11 updates; you unroot, take the OTA, then root again with a newly patched boot.img. And the data isn't wiped when moving to 12 if done through the OTA, just like 11 updates. If flashing a factory image the data is always wiped. What is different with 12 is that there is a verification of the boot.img and this has to be turned off (because the boot.img is patched), with a single fastboot command. It does appear to be sensitive to some details, so best to have a detailed procedure written down before starting the process. But those that have done it do not report a long or difficult process - just a finicky one.
I want to upgrade ota....but what do i have to do to achieve root without loosing files, setup, etc
 

CarinaPDX

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2013
260
90
Google Pixel 5a
No, I have not done it yet - oddly enough I have other things needing doing. The information needed to do it is in this thread: https://forum.xda-developers.com/t/guide-flash-magisk-on-android-12.4242959/ Unfortunately since it started during the 12 beta program, and there was a lot of trial and error, it is necessary to work through the long thread and sort out the process - which appears to be fairly simple (if inflexible).

When updating or upgrading there are always two paths to take: 1) take the OTA that is offered (after unrooting), or 2) flashing the full factory image. Generally speaking, OTAs are designed to keep the user data untouched [edit: not untouched but just converted where needed for the new system] and the factory image is intended to put the phone to factory condition (i.e. no user data present - starts from scratch). Updates (i.e. not upgrades between Android major versions) over-the-air (OTA) are replacing blocks of the stored image, which is very efficient, but requires a pristine stored image (hence the need to unroot to pass the check). Upgrades (new Android versions) seem to download the entire image, IIUC, and then clean up any data (like config files) that are not compatible with the new system. Sometimes the result has been less than perfect, although it is mostly reliable. Ultimately a factory image is the guarantee of getting a known good system, which can then be set up to the user's taste. Backing up user data (e.g. with Titanium Backup) and restoring can make this easier but again, config files from the previous system if restored on the new system can cause problems. Some people prefer to flash the factory image and reinstall the apps as new to get the highest confidence in the result. Most of us just take the OTA and trust the process, prepared to wipe config files or even flash the full factory image if there is a problem. Your choice.

After I write a procedure for myself, and successfully upgrade, I will post it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: grandpajiver
May 18, 2020
13
1
No, I have not done it yet - oddly enough I have other things needing doing. The information needed to do it is in this thread: https://forum.xda-developers.com/t/guide-flash-magisk-on-android-12.4242959/ Unfortunately since it started during the 12 beta program, and there was a lot of trial and error, it is necessary to work through the long thread and sort out the process - which appears to be fairly simple (if inflexible).

When updating or upgrading there are always two paths to take: 1) take the OTA that is offered (after unrooting), or 2) flashing the full factory image. Generally speaking, OTAs are designed to keep the user data untouched [edit: not untouched but just converted where needed for the new system] and the factory image is intended to put the phone to factory condition (i.e. no user data present - starts from scratch). Updates (i.e. not upgrades between Android major versions) over-the-air (OTA) are replacing blocks of the stored image, which is very efficient, but requires a pristine stored image (hence the need to unroot to pass the check). Upgrades (new Android versions) seem to download the entire image, IIUC, and then clean up any data (like config files) that are not compatible with the new system. Sometimes the result has been less than perfect, although it is mostly reliable. Ultimately a factory image is the guarantee of getting a known good system, which can then be set up to the user's taste. Backing up user data (e.g. with Titanium Backup) and restoring can make this easier but again, config files from the previous system if restored on the new system can cause problems. Some people prefer to flash the factory image and reinstall the apps as new to get the highest confidence in the result. Most of us just take the OTA and trust the process, prepared to wipe config files or even flash the full factory image if there is a problem. Your choice.

After I write a procedure for myself, and successfully upgrade, I will post it.
Ok cool and thanks....that was awesome info
 

CarinaPDX

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2013
260
90
Google Pixel 5a
So those of us that never rooted can just skip the unroot process and do the rest I assume?
That is the case. It seems that some with 12 beta got tripped up by not getting unrooting/removing Magisk and/or its modules right so that is one less thing to worry about. If you have never rooted then the OTA should work as expected. Rooting can be done in two ways, either by achieving a temporary root and using magisk to directly patch the boot.img, or by patching the boot.img and flashing it, right after removing verification and flashing the new vbmeta.img (in both cases). Of course you first have to unlock the bootloader and enable USB debug, install the Android tools on your computer (minimum version: you only need ADB and fastboot), and connect your computer to the phone with a USB cable. Again, refer to that thread or wait until I can write something up.
 
May 18, 2020
13
1
That is the case. It seems that some with 12 beta got tripped up by not getting unrooting/removing Magisk and/or its modules right so that is one less thing to worry about. If you have never rooted then the OTA should work as expected. Rooting can be done in two ways, either by achieving a temporary root and using magisk to directly patch the boot.img, or by patching the boot.img and flashing it, right after removing verification and flashing the new vbmeta.img (in both cases). Of course you first have to unlock the bootloader and enable USB debug, install the Android tools on your computer (minimum version: you only need ADB and fastboot), and connect your computer to the phone with a USB cable. Again, refer to that thread or wait until I can write something up.
How do one remove verification?🤔
 

tintn00+xda

Member
Jun 9, 2021
22
3
I haven't been able to permanently root android 12 without wiping my data. I'm not talking about upgrading from 11 to 12. I'm talking about after installing 12, I still have my data. Any attempt to permanently root 12 causes errors unless I wipe my data. This was detailed quite a bit in the link you posted. Have you tried permanently rooting 12 and keeping your data?
 
  • Like
Reactions: BlvckSensei816

CarinaPDX

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2013
260
90
Google Pixel 5a
As I said before, I have not had time to try the upgrade. Also, that thread has multiple conflicting posts which is why I know it will take time to go through and parse out what works and what doesn't. There are posts IIRC where root was achieved with data retained - but exactly how that was accomplished is not clear (or even if that really did happen). Since we have not had our phones for long there shouldn't be too much in data to lose, and there is always Titanium, so I will give it a go when I have time.

One of the things that I would like cleared up is if the way to 12 and root is to stop the OTA upgrade process at some point and remove verification and/or root before continuing, or possibly root fails because it is attempted before the upgrade is complete. IIRC the OTA has at least one reboot involved, with some processing after the reboot (probably fixing the data to be 12-compatible). Clearly if the upgrade can be done while retaining data and then successfully rooted then it must be done in a precise way; the lack of precise explanations of successful roots is very disappointing.

Edit: If it does turn out that data must be wiped every time 12 is rooted then that means backing up and restoring will be needed for each update, as well as unroot/root, and possibly removing verification each time. That would be a huge PITA. Let's hope that isn't so.
 
Last edited:

CarinaPDX

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2013
260
90
Google Pixel 5a
How do one remove verification?🤔
It is explained in the thread I linked. But at this point unless you are willing to wade through 14 [make that 16 and counting...] pages of posts it is better to wait until someone posts a good procedure. Anyone not familiar with flashing is liable to get into trouble and needing a factory flash. However good 12 is, it is not so good that we can't wait a bit.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: BlvckSensei816

Top Liked Posts

  • There are no posts matching your filters.
  • 2
    If you read this thread you will see how to do it, as done on beta releases. https://forum.xda-developers.com/t/guide-flash-magisk-on-android-12.4242959/ It is possible to achieve permanent root on 12 without wiping the personal data but it is a delicate dance. I have not tried it yet but as I understand it the process is to unroot 11 and at least remove Magisk modules, take the 12 update, boot into bootloader and use fastboot to remove boot verification and replace vbmeta.img, then flash patched boot.img, reboot and reinstall magisk. It seems there is a problem with just flashing the new factory image with the wipe option (-w) removed. Instead of fastboot flashing the patched boot.img it is also possible to directly patch the boot.img from Magisk while temporarily booted from the patched boot.img (via fastboot), again after removing the verification checks. It may be critical as to when the 5a is rebooted or not; it needs to have a normal reboot after the OTA upgrade in order to complete the upgrade, then boot to bootloader for fastboot operations. I am going to go back and make instructions for myself before proceeding, and will do a Titanium backup before doing anything else.

    Edit: it appears that some have achieved permanent root and still passed the SafetyNet check. IIRC it was done through the OTA upgrade path but I need to check that. If you are willing to wipe your data then just installing the factory image and then doing the fastboot commands it might work but that is not clear. Too many attempts at root and SafetyNet failed while flailing so hard to know right now if there are good alternatives to OTA.
    2
    As I said before, I have not had time to try the upgrade. Also, that thread has multiple conflicting posts which is why I know it will take time to go through and parse out what works and what doesn't. There are posts IIRC where root was achieved with data retained - but exactly how that was accomplished is not clear (or even if that really did happen). Since we have not had our phones for long there shouldn't be too much in data to lose, and there is always Titanium, so I will give it a go when I have time.

    One of the things that I would like cleared up is if the way to 12 and root is to stop the OTA upgrade process at some point and remove verification and/or root before continuing, or possibly root fails because it is attempted before the upgrade is complete. IIRC the OTA has at least one reboot involved, with some processing after the reboot (probably fixing the data to be 12-compatible). Clearly if the upgrade can be done while retaining data and then successfully rooted then it must be done in a precise way; the lack of precise explanations of successful roots is very disappointing.

    Edit: If it does turn out that data must be wiped every time 12 is rooted then that means backing up and restoring will be needed for each update, as well as unroot/root, and possibly removing verification each time. That would be a huge PITA. Let's hope that isn't so.
    1
    The factory images are up on Google's developer site, and when I tickled the system update found the 12 upgrade. I'm downloading the factory image now (for rooting with Magisk) then will upgrade to 12. Then more to learn...
    1
    The factory images are up on Google's developer site, and when I tickled the system update found the 12 upgrade. I'm downloading the factory image now (for rooting with Magisk) then will upgrade to 12. Then more to learn...
    Attempted the upgrade last night, seems there's some new things required if you want to flash the modified boot image and successfully boot. I believe you need to wipe the data partition and also pass along a few flags during install. However, temp root is an option if you want to avoid that for now (I did) by simply booting the image in fastboot vs flashing it. Just FYI!

    Edit. Sounds like SafetyNet won't pass yet if you do end up going the permanent route? I could be wrong but I believe that's what's I've read. I just checked on mine and the temporary boot image does seem to so that's good.
    1
    Barbet SP1A.210812.015
    Magisk 23001

    Be aware that you have to perform a complete uninstall of Magisk from within the app; you cannot simply uninstall it from Android and reinstall the older version, as it will not detect root.

    For everyone looking for information on rooting your Barbet, please check the Pixel 5 discussions. The 5a has the same partition configuration as the 5, all the commands are exactly the same, the only difference is you need the 5a specific files.

    As has been noted, we currently do not know of a way to retain data post upgrade and re root. It currently seems, for reasons yet unknown, that root on Android 12 can only be accomplished with a clean install or a data wipe.

    If you are running the 12 Beta and previously wiped, you should be able to upgrade to the 12 stable release via ADB sideload and reroot without a wipe. However, if you are on Android 11, you currently have two options:

    - Take the upgrade, retain data, use temporary root by keeping your /vbmeta and /boot stock, and boot the patched image via fastboot - meaning you lose root if you reboot
    - Take the upgrade, wipe data (or perform a clean factory install), gain permanent root.
    Thanks for the clarification 🤝