General 🛑❗⚠️ WARNING! Read this before you upgrade to Android 13 Stable!⚠️❗🛑

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samteeee

Senior Member
Hi guys;

I finally decided to take the on device A13 OTA and after the successful boot to OS,
I let it sit and do its things for a while and finally rebooted to Recovery and sideloaded
the September OTA zip and happy to report that my P6P booted to OS successfully!
I wanna thank all the good people here at XDA forum for reporting & sharing this problem
and its solution so that people like me can keep their devices intact for a bit longer.
 

domhall012N8

Senior Member
Hi guys;

I finally decided to take the on device A13 OTA and after the successful boot to OS,
I let it sit and do its things for a while and finally rebooted to Recovery and sideloaded
the September OTA zip and happy to report that my P6P booted to OS successfully!
I wanna thank all the good people here at XDA forum for reporting & sharing this problem
and its solution so that people like me can keep their devices intact for a bit longer.
New to the P6P... Haven't touched it "yet" beyond taking the Aug A13 Update... Does the Sept A13 Update, which will flash to the now inactive-A12 partition, not contain the A13 bootloader?

Or should I still sideload the Aug A13 Update to the inactive-A12 partition, then take the Sept A13 update?
 

V0latyle

Forum Moderator
Staff member
New to the P6P... Haven't touched it "yet" beyond taking the Aug A13 Update... Does the Sept A13 Update, which will flash to the now inactive-A12 partition, not contain the A13 bootloader?

Or should I still sideload the Aug A13 Update to the inactive-A12 partition, then take the Sept A13 update?
The September update will have AT LEAST the August bootloader, if not a newer version.
 
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roirraW "edor" ehT

Forum Moderator
Staff member
New to the P6P... Haven't touched it "yet" beyond taking the Aug A13 Update... Does the Sept A13 Update, which will flash to the now inactive-A12 partition, not contain the A13 bootloader?
Every month's update has a bootloader. Whether it's changed or not, or to what degree it has changed can vary. You don't need to flash the September bootloader to both slots if you are, for example, currently on the August Android 13 release right now, and you take the September OTA, which will provide you with an Android 13 Stable bootloader in each slot - albeit the August one in one slot, and the September one in the other slot. This is normal and perfectly acceptable, and there is no danger.

Or should I still sideload the Aug A13 Update to the inactive-A12 partition, then take the Sept A13 update?
I wouldn't bother. Just take the September OTA, and that'll get you what you need - an Android 13 bootloader on both slots. For that matter if you want a "just in case", you don't have to flash the August bootloader. Download the September factory image and do:
Code:
adb reboot bootloader
fastboot flash bootloader --slot all bootloader-devicename-slider-1.2-3456789.img
Using the filename of the bootloader.img file that's within the inner zip that's in the factory image zip.
 

samteeee

Senior Member
New to the P6P... Haven't touched it "yet" beyond taking the Aug A13 Update... Does the Sept A13 Update, which will flash to the now inactive-A12 partition, not contain the A13 bootloader?

Or should I still sideload the Aug A13 Update to the inactive-A12 partition, then take the Sept A13 update?
I apologize not making it clearer as I have a "locked bootloader"by choice, hence the only method to prevent a Bricked Pixel was to sideload a full OTA image, but as mentioned by @roirraW "edor" ehT, you can just flash the September bootloader to both slots and be safe!

Good Luck
 
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Dracarys321..

New member
Aug 29, 2017
1
1
From the Pixel Images page:
View attachment 5690651

This applies to ALL Tensor devices, regardless of whether or not you're rooted!

What this means:
Once Android 13 Stable boots, it updates an anti-rollback counter in the device hardware to prevent rolling back the bootloader. This will prevent previous versions of the bootloader from starting.

Why this is a problem: The OTA only updates one slot, then reboots into that slot. It does not update both slots at once. If there is a boot failure at any point in the future, the device may attempt to "recycle" back to the old slot. If this other slot has a previous version of the bootloader, the bootloader will not start, rendering the device a brick.

How do I make sure this doesn't happen to me?
If you updated via OTA, simply sideload the OTA again. Since you are currently on the Android 13 slot, this will overwrite your old Android 12 slot with the new bootloader.
If you have an unlocked bootloader and prefer to update using the factory image, you can flash the bootloader to both slots:
fastboot flash bootloader --slot=all <bootloader image> It's highly recommended you do this BEFORE updating, but if you didn't, do it as soon as possible.

What if I was on the Android 13 Beta? Same as above - the beta did not incorporate the anti-rollback, and the beta bootloaders are still considered "old".

Will the new bootloader prevent me from flashing and running Android 12? The short answer is YES, for now. Contrary to what the warning above says, you CAN flash Android 12 on the Android 13 bootloader, and though it will boot, it will not run properly. See this post.
I am trying sideloading the ota again...been following every step....device do show up on adb devices command but on next step when try to sideload file.zip..it says cannot read file.zip....please help a noob here
 
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V0latyle

Forum Moderator
Staff member
I am trying sideloading the ota again...been following every step....device do show up on adb devices command but on next step when try to sideload file.zip..it says cannot read file.zip....please help a noob here
Try this:
  1. Reboot your device into sideload mode:
    1. Use adb reboot sideload via your ADB command window
    2. Or, if you are already rooted, open Magisk, tap the Reboot button at the top, and select Reboot to recovery
    3. Or, hold Volume Up while booting to enter recovery
    4. If you used steps 2 or 3 above, once you see the green Android with "No command", hold Power and click Volume Up, then select Apply update from ADB
  2. Connect via USB and open a command window in your ADB Platform Tools folder
  3. Your screen should read Now send the package you want to apply to the device using "adb sideload <filename>"...
  4. In the ADB command window, type adb sideload, then drag and drop the OTA package into the command window. Make sure you leave a space after "sideload".
  5. The update should apply and reboot the device.
 
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RetroTech07

Senior Member
Apr 24, 2021
364
274
Google Pixel 2 XL
Google Pixel 6 Pro
well i really dont know what my pro pixel 6 is running. i just typed in amiga and ran the cjeckmark opened my stuff added my prrfs then opened hd i need keybosrd for usb c then went to cli then now inm looking around for a backdoor i left to open anything the gheckmark did. have fun guys cracking it im gettinh the 500 gig soon and im hoping for at least android 16 causecivdont want 50 years and at 16 i can get parental concent to obtain root. thanks vercraczen
I have no idea what you just said...
 
Jan 12, 2021
8
8
be careful with the new bootloader process.

i tried wiping my partitions and slots with

fastboot --set-active=a -w fastboot --set-active=b -w

before updating to the September release and it bricked my phone. Luckily I was able to get a replacement device from Google because there's no fix to this brick yet (as of writing this, October 2nd).

just a FYI for everyone
 

V0latyle

Forum Moderator
Staff member
be careful with the new bootloader process.

i tried wiping my partitions and slots with

fastboot --set-active=a -w fastboot --set-active=b -w

before updating to the September release and it bricked my phone. Luckily I was able to get a replacement device from Google because there's no fix to this brick yet (as of writing this, October 2nd).

just a FYI for everyone
Why are you using the -w argument when switching slots? You probably wiped your bootloader partitions.

This is why it's important to ask questions before you try things when you don't know what the potential outcome is.
 

V0latyle

Forum Moderator
Staff member
this used to be the canonical way to wipe everything and flash a new image prior to A13. it even worked when upgrading from A12 -> A13_beta -> A13.
Since when? I have never heard of using the -w arguments when switching slots. Some use fastboot erase <partition> while others use the -w argument when flashing the system image (which does not flash bootloader) but never since the Nexus devices have I ever seen a full wipe combined with a slot switch.
 
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surej_84

New member
Jan 28, 2013
4
2
vadakkencherry
First of all thanks to all for this info. I received my new pixel 6 pro yesterday. I am not planning to root or unlock the bootloader for the first 6 months. Iam currently updating the device to A 13 via OTA. Please advise me if I should sideload the factory image to the second slot once the OTA installation is over ( iam a noob and this is my understanding of the issue...apologies if it's illogical) . Or should I wait for the next months OTA update ? ( I think I read somewhere that the next OTA will install in the second slot). I hope iam making sense. Thanks again
 

V0latyle

Forum Moderator
Staff member
First of all thanks to all for this info. I received my new pixel 6 pro yesterday. I am not planning to root or unlock the bootloader for the first 6 months. Iam currently updating the device to A 13 via OTA. Please advise me if I should sideload the factory image to the second slot once the OTA installation is over ( iam a noob and this is my understanding of the issue...apologies if it's illogical) . Or should I wait for the next months OTA update ? ( I think I read somewhere that the next OTA will install in the second slot). I hope iam making sense. Thanks again
The factory image cannot be sideloaded; only the OTA image can.

But to answer your question, yes, you would simply sideload the OTA again.
 

AlexAuran

Member
Jul 15, 2010
24
3
Alright, I'm dumb. I read through this thread, thought I understood, then did the following:

1) Was on A12.
2) Flashed A13 bootloader only from the factory image to slot a and b.
"fastboot flash bootloader -slot=all bootloader-raven-slider-1.2-8895132.img"
The thought was I don't care if A12 runs properly, just want to get the bootloader unbrickable, then clean install A13 factory. Both slots return "fastboot getvar version-bootloader version-bootloader: slider-1.2-8895132"
3) Booted into A12 just fine.
4) Flash-all without -slot=all
5) Device boot loops as corrupt. Flash Tool will not detect phone. Fastboot detects from bootloader, adb from recovery and rescue.
6) Flash-all both slots, still corrupt.

Any ideas?
 

V0latyle

Forum Moderator
Staff member
Alright, I'm dumb. I read through this thread, thought I understood, then did the following:

1) Was on A12.
2) Flashed A13 bootloader only from the factory image to slot a and b.
"fastboot flash bootloader -slot=all bootloader-raven-slider-1.2-8895132.img"
The thought was I don't care if A12 runs properly, just want to get the bootloader unbrickable, then clean install A13 factory. Both slots return "fastboot getvar version-bootloader version-bootloader: slider-1.2-8895132"
3) Booted into A12 just fine.
4) Flash-all without -slot=all
5) Device boot loops as corrupt. Flash Tool will not detect phone. Fastboot detects from bootloader, adb from recovery and rescue.
6) Flash-all both slots, still corrupt.

Any ideas?
You have to be in bootloader to use the Flash Tool.

Have you tried reflashing the A13 image?
 
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V0latyle

Forum Moderator
Staff member
I have access to the bootloader and fastboot detects the phone just fine, but AFT doesn't connect at all. I have flashed the A13 factory image several times with no success.
If fastboot sees the device, Android Flash Tool should work. Make sure you allow ADB permissions in your browser; Google Chrome is recommended as not all browsers have WebADB capability.

To explain a little bit what's going on, I assume you're seeing a screen similar to this on boot:
1667493247664.png


This has nothing to do with the bootloader, and just means that Android has crashed enough times that the device thinks neither slot is bootable.

If you don't care about losing data, just perform factory reset; your device should boot fine.

If you want to try to keep data, see if you can sideload the OTA.
 

AlexAuran

Member
Jul 15, 2010
24
3
If fastboot sees the device, Android Flash Tool should work. Make sure you allow ADB permissions in your browser; Google Chrome is recommended as not all browsers have WebADB capability.

To explain a little bit what's going on, I assume you're seeing a screen similar to this on boot:
View attachment 5751479

This has nothing to do with the bootloader, and just means that Android has crashed enough times that the device thinks neither slot is bootable.

If you don't care about losing data, just perform factory reset; your device should boot fine.

If you want to try to keep data, see if you can sideload the OTA.
AFT doesn't see the device with ADB Permission granted on both MacOS and Windows Chrome Stable.

If I boot into recovery, I see the no command android, but pressing up+power doesn't show this menu.

I don't ever see the recovery menu. I can boot into the bootloader without issue. If I do a system boot, "Start", I get the Google Logo for about 5 seconds, then looped back to the bootloader.

If I flash-all, it completes successfully but then shows the red corrupt error screen, if I don't touch it at all, it loops and reboots until it ultimately shows the charging icon.

I'm fully backed up and don't care about any data. I'm completely stumped.
 

V0latyle

Forum Moderator
Staff member
First, make absolutely sure you are using the latest ADB Platform Tools.
AFT doesn't see the device with ADB Permission granted on both MacOS and Windows Chrome Stable.
You have to be in bootloader mode. If you're in bootloader, and fastboot devices shows the device, Android Flash Tool should work. But, it probably won't help unless you force flashed all partitions which would require a data wipe.
If I boot into recovery, I see the no command android, but pressing up+power doesn't show this menu.
To enter the recovery menu, hold Power, and click Volume Up. Don't click them at the same time; you have to be holding Power when you click Volume +.
I don't ever see the recovery menu. I can boot into the bootloader without issue. If I do a system boot, "Start", I get the Google Logo for about 5 seconds, then looped back to the bootloader.

If I flash-all, it completes successfully but then shows the red corrupt error screen
Please post a picture of this screen. Is it like the one I posted above?

If it's this one, we have a different problem:
boot_red1.png

if I don't touch it at all, it loops and reboots until it ultimately shows the charging icon.

I'm fully backed up and don't care about any data. I'm completely stumped.
Well, let's see if sideloading works. Boot your device into recovery, get into the menu as I described above, and select Apply update from ADB. Connect to your PC, and download this file (OTA, Raven TP1A.221005.002).
In your ADB command window, type adb devices to ensure ADB sees your device, then type adb sideload <drag and drop the OTA package you just downloaded>. This will update the alternate slot, and once complete, should reboot into that slot.

If this doesn't work, boot to bootloader and try fastboot -w which will wipe both data and cache.
Alternatively, you can boot to recovery and select Factory Reset.
 

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  • 2
    @V0latyle I switched to a stock windows 10 VM that didn't have any adb or drivers installed. Downloaded everything fresh, got it booted. Turns out I mixed up .zip files on the original machine, so I didn't have the latest ADB Tools on the machine. I didn't look into it closely because I thought the if/then in the flash-all.bat would check that requirement since it's coded right there and all the commands seemly worked. Yes, I know that's a basic step. Admitting it publicly in case it helps someone else. Sorry for wasting your time, but thank you for your help. Can I buy you coffee?
    1
    Alright, I'm dumb. I read through this thread, thought I understood, then did the following:

    1) Was on A12.
    2) Flashed A13 bootloader only from the factory image to slot a and b.
    "fastboot flash bootloader -slot=all bootloader-raven-slider-1.2-8895132.img"
    The thought was I don't care if A12 runs properly, just want to get the bootloader unbrickable, then clean install A13 factory. Both slots return "fastboot getvar version-bootloader version-bootloader: slider-1.2-8895132"
    3) Booted into A12 just fine.
    4) Flash-all without -slot=all
    5) Device boot loops as corrupt. Flash Tool will not detect phone. Fastboot detects from bootloader, adb from recovery and rescue.
    6) Flash-all both slots, still corrupt.

    Any ideas?
    You have to be in bootloader to use the Flash Tool.

    Have you tried reflashing the A13 image?
    1
    @V0latyle I switched to a stock windows 10 VM that didn't have any adb or drivers installed. Downloaded everything fresh, got it booted. Turns out I mixed up .zip files on the original machine, so I didn't have the latest ADB Tools on the machine. I didn't look into it closely because I thought the if/then in the flash-all.bat would check that requirement since it's coded right there and all the commands seemly worked. Yes, I know that's a basic step. Admitting it publicly in case it helps someone else. Sorry for wasting your time, but thank you for your help. Can I buy you coffee?
    I don't have any way to accept donations, and I wouldn't if I did. You can help me by helping everyone else here on XDA.
    1
    Why ?
    Why ?
    Why ?

    Why do manufacturers do such things ?

    What is the harm in rolling back a device ?

    You know what : SCREW GOOGLE.

    I thought the Pixel devices would be "open to development" devices.

    They are not.

    What if I do not like the new stupid Android UI after I tested it ?

    So I assume even if I flash the A12 factory image to both slots after upgrading to A13, I'm screwed...

    Does this also applies to A13 custom ROM ?
    1
    Why ?
    Why ?
    Why ?

    Why do manufacturers do such things ?

    What is the harm in rolling back a device ?

    You know what : SCREW GOOGLE.
    Wrong place. I don't appreciate any sort of trash talking in my threads.
    I thought the Pixel devices would be "open to development" devices.

    They are not.
    This has not changed. The bootloader update (as well as subsequent anti-rollback) was done for security reasons to close a major exploit in the previous bootloader. This update has little effect on development for Tensor devices. The only thing this changes is the ability to roll back factory firmware.
    What if I do not like the new stupid Android UI after I tested it ?
    You can flash an Android 12 Developer GSI image, or you can use custom ROMs.
    So I assume even if I flash the A12 factory image to both slots after upgrading to A13, I'm screwed...
    You cannot roll back the bootloader. You -can- force flash the Android 13 system image without updating the bootloader but it may not work properly. You can also force flash the Android 12 system image on the new bootloader but it's also unstable. If you are concerned about any of this, don't update.
    Does this also applies to A13 custom ROM ?
    Once again, this has little to do with the OS. Bootloaders are always proprietary, and there are many OEMs that restrict or prevent development altogether - such as Samsung (newer bootloaders will refuse to boot custom OS). Google is not one of these, and the bootloader update does not prevent or restrict the use of custom ROMs. It is possible, given the fact that the stock Android 12 system doesn't work properly on the 13 bootloader, that developers may have to make more changes for their builds to be stable, but the fact remains that the new bootloader does not prevent flashing or using custom software.
  • 20
    ***Note: THIS IS NOT A ROOT GUIDE. For updating and root instructions, check out my guide here.***

    From the Pixel Images page:
    1668631218213.png


    This applies to ALL Tensor devices, regardless of whether or not you're rooted!

    What this means:
    Once Android 13 Stable boots, it updates an anti-rollback counter in the device hardware to prevent rolling back the bootloader. This will prevent previous versions of the bootloader from starting.

    Why this is a problem: The OTA only updates one slot, then reboots into that slot. It does not update both slots at once. If there is a boot failure after updating to Android 13, the device may attempt to "recycle" back to the old slot. If this other slot has a previous version of the bootloader, the bootloader will not start, rendering the device a brick.

    How do I make sure this doesn't happen to me?
    If you updated via OTA, simply sideload the OTA again. Since you are currently on the Android 13 slot, this will overwrite your old Android 12 slot with the new bootloader.
    If you have an unlocked bootloader and prefer to update using the factory image, you can flash the bootloader to both slots:
    fastboot flash bootloader --slot=all <bootloader image> It's highly recommended you do this BEFORE updating, but if you didn't, do it as soon as possible.

    I've updated several times since the August 2022 update, am I still at risk?
    If you've updated via OTA at least once since August, you should be fine. Instructions to check bootloader versions are further down this post.

    What if I was on the Android 13 Beta? Same as above - the beta did not incorporate the anti-rollback, and the beta bootloaders are still considered "old".

    Will the new bootloader prevent me from flashing and running Android 12? The short answer is YES, for now. Contrary to what the warning above says, you CAN flash Android 12 on the Android 13 bootloader, and though it will boot, it will not run properly. See this post.

    How do I check my current bootloader version?
    Code:
    adb reboot bootloader #Reboots device to bootloader.
    
    fastboot getvar current-slot #Outputs current slot, should also be visible on the device screen: "Boot slot"
    
    fastboot getvar version-bootloader #Outputs current slot's bootloader version, should also be visible on device screen "Bootloader version"
    
    fastboot --set-active=a or b (set to inactive slot) #Use this to switch to the inactive slot - if current slot is A, set to B or vice versa.
    
    fastboot getvar current-slot
    
    fastboot getvar version-bootloader
    
    fastboot --set -active=a or b (set to original slot) #Set active slot back to what it was before.  If you started on slot A, make sure you switch back to slot A.
    
    fastboot getvar current-slot
    
    fastboot continue #Commands device to resume boot, same function as selecting "Start" in the bootloader menu.
    7
    Android 12 party is over, DRM APEX isn't functional when the Android 13 bootloader is installed.

    You won't be able to use WebView or browsers, and anything that wants to check DRM like streaming applications are going to crash.

    Maybe at some point a developer can look into cooking up a custom Android 12 ROM with Android 13 APEXs or patched ones.
    5
    FYI: Even though Android Flash Tool does not flash the whole image to both slots, they have added an option to flash the A13 bootloader to the inactive slot. This may be the easiest option when updating to A13 from A12.

    Just to be clear, when updating to A13 from A12 a prompt will show up asking whether you want to also flash the bootloader to the inactive slot as well. It doesn't show up in the regular tick boxes.


    Screenshot from 2022-08-24 14-39-11.png
    5
    Source? This would be nice. I still think Pixel Flasher is superior in most ways


    Screenshot_20220821-005234.png
    3
    Do I reboot after doing this, or just continue to update like normal after, without rebooting?

    Since the flash-all.bat reboots after updating the bootloader:
    fastboot flash bootloader bootloader-raven-slider-1.2-8739948.img
    fastboot reboot-bootloader

    ping -n 5 127.0.0.1 >nul
    fastboot flash radio radio-raven-g5123b-102852-220720-b-8851166.img
    fastboot reboot-bootloader
    ping -n 5 127.0.0.1 >nul
    fastboot update image-raven-tp1a.220624.021.zip
    I would say, yes, reboot, but only if you're skipping the regular flash-all.bat and manually doing the rest of the steps. There's no harm to just:
    Code:
    fastboot flash bootloader --slot=all <bootloader image>
    flash-all.bat
    (with the "-w" removed from the flash-all.bat, as always) since the flash-all.bat will reboot after once again updating the current slot's bootloader. Again, no harm.

    Alternatively, you could modify the flash-all.bat's flash bootloader line to:
    Code:
    fastboot flash bootloader --slot=all <bootloader image>
    in which case, the flash-all.bat will reboot after, anyway, because it's already in the script to reboot after.

    I hope this helps.