Several OTA updates rolled out last year and with them came a new way for LG G2 smartphones owners to equip their devices with root access. The new tool is called ioRoot and it still works today for those who are up and using the latest Android 5.0.2 Lollipop update. Check after the jump how to use ioRoot for T-Mobile and other phone carrier networks.

Before starting the guide you should check out our list of LG G2 essentials so that you understand the risks, everything you need and more.

LG G2 T-Mobile

 

What Is Rooting the Android Operating System?

When you buy a new smartphone, you might not know it, but the Android operating system is in a “locked” state. For the most part, it will not make much difference to you: most apps are still available to use, and there are benefits to this locked state such as better security. When you root the Android operating system, you are gaining full administrative rights over the OS.

Why Would You Want to Root Android?

Gaining full administrative rights over the operating system has some perks to some people. For example, out of the millions of applications available on Google Play, some of them will not be able to run on your device unless it has root access. Until you have a specific need for wanting Android rooted, you probably want to leave Android as it comes out of the box. But if you need to unlock an app, then that is when you want to look into rooting methods. Using more apps is only one example of why you may want root access, here is the full list of benefits:

  • Unlock more applications. Some of the apps available for Android cannot run unless you have root access. This is because the app’s features cannot run without the root permissions because the features require the full system access before they can be useful.
  • Better battery life. Smartphones are great, but they have one caveat, which is each time you recharge the battery, it loses some of its overall lifespan. That means smartphones, in general, do not make great investments, and if your weekly paycheck is low, you will want to limit the number of smartphones you go through. One of the ways you can do that is by removing bloatware and creating a better battery life.
  • Bolster performance. If you are the budget-conscious shopper, you may want to increase the device’s performance. This can be done by removing the bloatware as well. The more processes you have running, the more memory that is used. By removing some of the apps, it can help lighten the load on your hardware.
  • Customize Android with themes. With root access, you can download and install any theme that’s at your disposal. That includes any customized theme you can find.

What Are the Risks of Rooting?

If you are buying a smartphone that is not running iOS, then it is probably the Android operating system that you want running as the ideal software to pair with your shiny new hardware. It is, in fact, the Android OS that offers you the chance to customize the OS considerably more than iOS: custom themes, run any app you know about, the works. For many users, the “openness” of an operating system is important, because it offers them more freedom which means running into fewer problems with their investments. But there is a reason iOS likes a far more locked approach: the ability to customize is not for everyone, and if you do not know what you are doing it can lead to a lot of problems which can define your time with the OS rather than freedom.

With power (full admin permissions) comes greater responsibility. Here are some of the main risk factors when it comes to rooting:

  • Malware becomes a larger threat. You might read the occasional news article about how new malware is wreaking havoc in parts of the world on Android. But the Android operating system with root access becomes considerably more vulnerable to exploits because applications are no longer prisoned off in their own sandbox environments. This means if you accidentally download malware, it can do more damage because it can spread throughout the operating system and even jump into other applications and potentially view sensitive data.
  • You can accidentally brick the smartphone. There is always a chance that you end up bricking the smartphone before you had the opportunity to use it with root access. That is because if you are going to brick it, it is going to happen during the rooting process.
  • You may void the warranty. Most manufacturers do not allow you to root the Android operating system and still get to bring it in for repairs under warranty. Whether they are legally meant to do that or not is another question, but it is now common knowledge that most do not want to help you if they find out you have unlocked the OS with root access.

Details of Note

  • You should check that you have the T-Mobile variant of the G2 and not a different version. The same ioRoot tool does work for other smartphone networks, but not all of them. That’s why it’s best to stick with what you know. It’s our understanding that it will work for most people around the United States and their networks, including the likes of AT&T, Verizon, Sprint or the aforementioned T-Mobile. However, once you start thinking about smaller networks close to the US or other parts of the world, it’s probably not made for them.
  • You should backup the current ROM you have on the G2 smartphone by using the built-in backup features available thanks to your OEM. If you don’t like using that, you can also install third-party apps from Google Play such as Helium for Android. There’s a bunch of other apps too! Put them together and you can back up just about anything from your Settings to your phone contacts, media, music and more.
  • You’ll need to enable the USB Debugging Mode from the Developer Options menu. Most people have that menu available from the Settings. However, if you cannot see the Developer Options from there that means you must unlock it by tapping the firmware build number seven times. You’ll see that build number from the About Device menu coming from the same Settings menu.

Files You Need

Download the IORoot package to the desktop of the computer. You want that to be a Windows PC (ranging from Windows Surface tablets, to laptops or even a desktop).

You should install the LG USB Drivers for mobile phones to the computer for when you are connecting. Once done, reboot the PC and come back to the guide here. You usually must reboot a PC before the drivers will work.

Rooting the LG G2 running Android 5.0.2 Lollipop

  1. Extract the iorootxx.zip file to the desktop of the computer. That means right clicking with the mouse over the zipped file and selecting to extract that.
  2. Find the USB cable that comes out of the LG G2 box and connect the smartphone to the computer with the same USB cable.
  3. Now run the Windows bat file that’s inside the extracted contents on the desktop.
  4. All you must do from here is follow the quick set of on-screen instructions and you’re done.
  5. You’ll see a notification prompting you about the Command prompt windows. Accept that.
  6. Now watch and wait as the rooting scripts do their thing. It’s important not to touch any keys until it’s done.
  7. It doesn’t automatically install SuperSU for you. You must head to Google Play and install the SuperSU yourself.
  8. From there, you can choose to install the root checker application from the same Play Store and check that it’s working.

If you get stuck you can search for how to unroot the LG G2 smartphone and return back to the stock version (with bloatware) of Android from your OEM. Those preferring an easier alternative should think about accessing the recovery mode and taking a factory reset. Remember that resetting the hard way will wipe all data on your LG smartphone. If you didn’t backup, it’s a great idea to try clearing the cache before taking the reset, for if that fixes the problem.