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Root Android 12 on 3a XL (And Others...)

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Rooting these is easier than some people make it out to be on other Pixel forums, so I figured I'd write up a simplified Root guide for Android 12 here as I don't see one for the 3a XL, but this does apply to all Pixel's that can upgrade to Android 12. Every other tutorial I see tells you go go through and flash Android 11 with Google Chrome, then unlock the bootloader and flash 12, then use the chrome browser flashing to disable verification. Disabling verification is 1 line of code and flashing vbmeta.img. No reason to do all that extra work when it can be done in a few minutes.

I'm not responsible for bricked devices or lost data, do this at your own risk. This tutorial is assuming your Bootloader is ALREADY UNLOCKED. If not, its fairly simple and there's tons of guides on it

What's needed:

- Magisk Manager (here: https://github.com/topjohnwu/Magisk/releases/)
- Fastboot ZIP from Google (here: https://developer.android.com/about/versions/12/download)
- ADB/Fastboot and Drivers installed (new installer: https://forum.xda-developers.com/t/...reborn-v2-0-adb-fastboot-and-drivers.3854109/)
- Unlocked Bootloader

Instructions
1.) Make sure your bootloader is unlocked, and USB Debugging is enabled.
Download the Fastboot ZIP from google for your device. Open it with 7Zip (or your preferred program), then open the Zip file found in that extracted in 7Zip and pull out boot.img and vbmeta.img
2.) Install Magisk Manager on Device and put the boot.img on your internal storage
3.) Use Magisk Manager to patch the Boot.img file
4.) Drag and drop the magisk-patched.img somewhere on your computer. This is the rooted boot.img
5.) Reboot device to Bootloader and first disable boot verification with the code below
-- To get vbmeta.img, you can pull it out of that Fastboot Zip from Google for Android 12. Simply open the image-xxxxx-xxxxxxx.zip and extract it from there
Code:
fastboot --disable-verity --disable-verification flash vbmeta <drag your vbmeta.img to CMD window>
6.) Once that's done, flash your patched boot image
Code:
fastboot flash boot <drag your magisk-patched.img to CMD Window>
7.) You're rooted!
 
Last edited:

prot-

Senior Member
Jan 16, 2013
743
121
Rooting these is easier than some people make it out to be on other Pixel forums, so I figured I'd write up a simplified Root guide for Android 12 here as I don't see one for the 3a XL, but this does apply to all Pixel's that can upgrade to Android 12. Every other tutorial I see tells you go go through and flash Android 11 with Google Chrome, then unlock the bootloader and flash 12, then use the chrome browser flashing to disable verification. Disabling verification is 1 line of code and flashing vbmeta.img. No reason to do all that extra work when it can be done in a few minutes.

I'm not responsible for bricked devices or lost data, do this at your own risk. This tutorial is assuming your Bootloader is ALREADY UNLOCKED. If not, its fairly simple and there's tons of guides on it

What's needed:

- Magisk Manager (here: https://github.com/topjohnwu/Magisk/releases/)
- Fastboot ZIP from Google (here: https://developer.android.com/about/versions/12/download)
- ADB/Fastboot and Drivers installed (new installer: https://forum.xda-developers.com/t/...reborn-v2-0-adb-fastboot-and-drivers.3854109/)
- Unlocked Bootloader

Instructions
1.) Make sure your bootloader is unlocked, and USB Debugging is enabled.
Download the Fastboot ZIP from google for your device. Open it with 7Zip (or your preferred program), then open the Zip file found in that extracted in 7Zip and pull out boot.img and vbmeta.img
2.) Install Magisk Manager on Device and put the boot.img on your internal storage
3.) Use Magisk Manager to patch the Boot.img file
4.) Drag and drop the magisk-patched.img somewhere on your computer. This is the rooted boot.img
5.) Reboot device to Bootloader and first disable boot verification with the code below
Code:
fastboot --disable-verity --disable-verification flash vbmeta <drag your vbmeta.img to CMD window>
6.) Once that's done, flash your patched boot image
Code:
fastboot flash boot <drag your magisk-patched.img to CMD Window>
7.) You're rooted!
What you seemed to have missed the whole part about the vbmeta.img part? Where you you get that??
 
Awesome thanks!
For Android 11 I always need a custom kernel to avoid freeze cause of the systemless hosts file. Do U do the same in 12? What kernel?

Honestly, when I flashed this, I didn't do anything except the vbmeta and the android 12. If its a GSI, I would think maybe a custom kernel is needed, but this isn't a GSI if you're doing it right to a pixel. My 3A XL is still running 12 just fine with root, no custom kernel
 

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    Rooting these is easier than some people make it out to be on other Pixel forums, so I figured I'd write up a simplified Root guide for Android 12 here as I don't see one for the 3a XL, but this does apply to all Pixel's that can upgrade to Android 12. Every other tutorial I see tells you go go through and flash Android 11 with Google Chrome, then unlock the bootloader and flash 12, then use the chrome browser flashing to disable verification. Disabling verification is 1 line of code and flashing vbmeta.img. No reason to do all that extra work when it can be done in a few minutes.

    I'm not responsible for bricked devices or lost data, do this at your own risk. This tutorial is assuming your Bootloader is ALREADY UNLOCKED. If not, its fairly simple and there's tons of guides on it

    What's needed:

    - Magisk Manager (here: https://github.com/topjohnwu/Magisk/releases/)
    - Fastboot ZIP from Google (here: https://developer.android.com/about/versions/12/download)
    - ADB/Fastboot and Drivers installed (new installer: https://forum.xda-developers.com/t/...reborn-v2-0-adb-fastboot-and-drivers.3854109/)
    - Unlocked Bootloader

    Instructions
    1.) Make sure your bootloader is unlocked, and USB Debugging is enabled.
    Download the Fastboot ZIP from google for your device. Open it with 7Zip (or your preferred program), then open the Zip file found in that extracted in 7Zip and pull out boot.img and vbmeta.img
    2.) Install Magisk Manager on Device and put the boot.img on your internal storage
    3.) Use Magisk Manager to patch the Boot.img file
    4.) Drag and drop the magisk-patched.img somewhere on your computer. This is the rooted boot.img
    5.) Reboot device to Bootloader and first disable boot verification with the code below
    -- To get vbmeta.img, you can pull it out of that Fastboot Zip from Google for Android 12. Simply open the image-xxxxx-xxxxxxx.zip and extract it from there
    Code:
    fastboot --disable-verity --disable-verification flash vbmeta <drag your vbmeta.img to CMD window>
    6.) Once that's done, flash your patched boot image
    Code:
    fastboot flash boot <drag your magisk-patched.img to CMD Window>
    7.) You're rooted!