Tag: flash

How to Flash Cyanogen Mod on Nexus 4 Using Ubuntu

If you ended up on my first tutorial showing how to get ‘android back’ I did post that too hastily and forgot that Cyanogen mod is a much, much safer version of android because it doesn’t connect to the mothership of Google.  If you have been running Ubuntu on the Nexus 4 and been challenged and need a temporary solution while some bugs are worked out at ubuntu, this is a safer option while you buy some time.  I hope this is helpful resource so that busy and broke people can stick with Ubuntu during times of code tribulation.

This tutorial assumes you already have adb set up on your Ubuntu desktop/laptop.

This tutorial assumes you have Ubuntu on your laptop/desktop.  If not, good luck.  You’re on your own, sorry…

NOTE: Cyanogen mod does not come with a google play store.

  1. get recovery image from here: https://dl.twrp.me/mako/  (note if you want more info you can go here: https://twrp.me/devices/lgnexus4.html)
  2. download cyanogen mod for nexus 4 here: http://download.cyanogenmod.org/?device=mako
  3. plug in phone with usb
  4. navigate with terminal to place where you downloaded that twrp.img thing above
  5. type fastboot flash recovery and start typing name of big twrp file and hit ‘tab’ to auto-fill it
  6. press enter
  7. when done, should say ‘finished’ in terminal
  8. test to see if it worked by using your volume up/down button until you come to ‘recovery mode’ on your fastboot screen. should get some ‘team messages’
  9. swipe to allow modifications to partitions (not sure if you should but I did for speed)
  10. push the cyanogen mod install .zip file onto sd card by entering this in terminal: adb push filename.zip /sdcard/ where ‘filename’ is the name of the cyanogen mod install thing you downloaded in step #2 above. You can again use the tab button to auto-fill your filename after you start typing.  My command looked like this as reference: adb push cm-12.1-20151007-SNAPSHOT-YOG4PAO334-mako.zip /sdcard/ – this takes a bit of time and will show you how much moved and how long it took when complete. Don’t interrupt it until it’s complete.
  11. Within the TEAM thing again select ‘wipe’ and ‘factory reset’.  Of course don’t do this if you haven’t backed up pictures of the wife and kids…
  12. Super root your phone if it’s not done already…. skip this if you have
  13. ‘install’
  14. select storage (in this case it’s internal storage since the dumb thing didn’t come with SD card)
  15. you’ll see your cyanogen mod file sitting there that you moved over from step #10 above.  go ahead. touch it.
  16. swipe the blue arrows to ‘swipe to confirm flash” if everything goes well you will see stuffs happening and your phone will be heading towards a slightly less evil version of Android.  the phone will turn off, then turn on again, and you’ll have blue arrows to swipe again to unlock.
  17. Unlock it.
  18. Reboot system. Phone will turn off again (I sound like a broken record!).  Cool looking blue robot thing will show up.

I hope this helps a few Ubuntu fans keep their Nexus 4 alive for days with less bugs if you are in desperate need of the phone for business or otherwise during the pioneer days.  We are very close to no longer needing Cyanogen and other versions and because Ubuntu will soon converge into desktop, laptop and tablet, there really is no need to explore other OS.

That said, I’m very thankful for Cyanogen mod and the folks who built it and it was very good while google reigned in terror and thanks for this tutorial upon which I based mine: http://wiki.cyanogenmod.org/w/Install_CM_for_mako

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How to Flash Back to Android from Ubuntu Phone

UPDATE:  This tutorial below will flash you back under the nasty tracking eyes of Google/Alphabet.  You will get the google play store and all the ‘fun’ but you will also get spied on and ultimately regret it.  I have since updated my tutorial/solution to this:

How to Flash Cyanogen Mod on Nexus 4 Using Ubuntu

There is no play store out of box but there are workarounds, etc, to hold you over for app-stuff.


First, I hope you never have to perform this tutorial.  I would never do this if I wasn’t in such a time and money crunch.  What I would do instead, is buy an ubuntu phone out of box.  But my situation is that I have a Nexus 4 which wasn’t designed out of box for Ubuntu so there are some bugs which I cannot find time to work around (for now).

Anyway, my hope is that the bugs will be solved in the next couple of months and I’ll flash right back to Ubuntu or have enough dough to buy a new device with it pre-installed.  It’s very important that I say this because I feel like a dirty dog for even writing this tutorial but I know that I’m not alone amongst those who may need to flash in and out while the kinks are worked out in ubuntu phone.  My goal here, to be crystal clear, is to give busy or broke ubuntu fans and believers a chance to stay on the team by allowing them to ‘temporarily flash out and in’ rather than, say, flash out and stay out, or buy some horrid apple or android phone before an out-of-box ubuntu phone is available for purchase in their neighbourhood.

Here’s the time-saving set of steps for you:

Assumptions: your phone is sitting there at the fast boot bootloader screen thing with the green robot with the usb cable plugged in in the same way that it was when you flashed Ubuntu onto your phone.

  1. download the evil compressed file of nastiness here: https://developers.google.com/android/nexus/images#instruction
  2. extract the stench in a safe file that will never defile the rest of your ubuntu machine
  3. navigate to it with the cd command (change directory command) contents should look like this:


4. type this, assuming you can see the ‘flash-all.sh’ there  –>   ./flash-all.sh

5. wait, cry, and think about the error of your ways and how you are putting yourself and others at risk.  Also, make note in calender to flash back to Ubuntu. You’ll have a lot of time to do this because the flash seems to take extra long…


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How to Flash from Cyanogen Mod to Ubuntu on Nexus 4

Normally in the past, it was very easy for me to flash from android to Ubuntu for phone.  I just used the usual ubuntu tutorial and it worked.

Then, somewhere in the middle I switched to Cyanogen mod (android) as the ‘lesser of two evils’ while I was waiting for bluetooth to improve.

I heard today that everything is working so I went back to flash and boom.  Snagged.  It woudn’t recognize adb devices when I was in fastboot mode.

I searched and tried a hundred commands but the answer turned out easy.  I just had to switch to recovery mode, not fastboot mode.

How you do that is on your green robot screen you just push the down arrow (volume) until the screen says ‘recovery mode’ at the top and then press the usual power button at the top right.

Then you go back and follow the install instructions from this command:

ubuntu-device-flash touch --channel=ubuntu-touch/stable/ubuntu

All good in the hood.


EDIT: All was NOT good in the hood.  I got stuck in a perpetual Cyanogen Mod recovery mode loop.  It turns out that nothing else worked for me.  The ubuntu flash process from the above command worked. I could see all the images going to the device. But it would continually reboot back into CM.

The solution?  Oddly, all I had to do was add back in the –bootstrap at the end of the command and everything worked instantly.  So the command looked like this:

ubuntu-device-flash touch --channel=ubuntu-touch/stable/ubuntu --bootstrap

I suspect this is not ideal because the official tutorial shows clearly you should only need the bootstrap option at first install only but mine always needs it.  If anyone knows what’s up it would be cool to know.  Please comment!  Otherwise, we’re back to Ubuntu – hopefully forever.

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