The original Xperia Z series saw a software update within the last few weeks to build number 10.5.1.A.0.292. Today we’ll show you how to get root access with a locked bootloader. It follows the same steps as we created for the .283 build, but we flash the different firmware toward the end. Anyhow, you don’t need to worry about that since we have it all covered during the steps below. You should read through the list of essentials before starting the steps so you know how to prepare and what you need. It also fills you in on all the risks involved.

Ensuring the root access and unlocking is the same thing. The device manufacturers who choose to run Android for the operating system always patch the internal system with default factory restrictions. Opening it up away from the restrictions is what we call rooting. It does come with risks you ought to be aware of such as voiding the remaining warranty. In this instance, that’s not a huge deal since the smartphone is aging quickly and most warranties are gone. It makes  sense to tinker with the operating system on a secondary phone and not the daily. However, since we are just unlocking the system internal and not installing a custom ROM such as M12 from CyanogenMod, you need not worry about the system stability. That said, research the custom ROM you are installing before downloading because there are loads of different version and some are not last builds. Only the final builds offer the utmost stability that you would want on your work phone.

Xperia Z


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

  • The following is for experienced Android users only. Ideally you have experience with the Sony flash tool and know your way around the tool without any hassles. It’s always difficult catering for the advanced and the rookies all in one as the advanced don’t want to read information all day that they already know and the rookies must understand what’s happening. If you are a regular at finding root access  you can skip ahead to the steps.
  • The most important part on the list of essentials is backing up. You must backup the data if you need a full factory reset. Common occasions what that occurs is if you are stuck in a boot loop and entering recovery mode doesn’t fix the problem. There are many options available from Google Play to help you backup to the internal memory or the external SD card. You can choose either SD card since the internal memory is not wiped; only the ROM itself is wiped when applying factory resets. Try apps such as Helium, SMS backup+, G Cloud, Titanium for those already with the internal unchained or Google services such as Google Drive. Google Drive is great since Android are owned by Google and they offer a free amount of space up to a certain amount of GB’s.
  • On the other hand, we know the first lot of Z phones come with USB charging as a default stock feature. That means it charges the battery all by itself once plugged into a computer. Speaking of computers you need a computer to follow this guide. Moreover, you must a Windows PC with 32-bit or 64-bit architecture. The Flash Tool only works for Windows. You can download the two separate versions depending on what type of OS you have.
  • You want to install the up-to-date USB drivers if you haven’t got them already Most of you already do. You can verify if you are one of those people by plugging the handset into the computer and trying to get access to the phone data from the drive. If you are accessing things such as photos from the phone you know it’s working and your drivers are already up-to-date.
  • Correspondingly, you ought to enable the USB Debugging mode from the Xperia or else the drivers are useless. Stopover at menu > Settings > Developer options and enable the USB Debugging mode from there. It’s hidden in past versions of Android such as 4.2, but we know you aren’t running that now wince these steps are only for KitKat.
  • Furthermore, only follow the steps if you are running the aforementioned firmware build number. We know a great deal of you are since you found the guide that way so there’s no problems there.
  • Do not install the files using the Xperia ZL, ZR, Z2, Z1, Z3 or any other Xperia device that isn’t the Xperia Z.

How to root the 10.5.1.A.0.292 firmware on Sony Xperia Z

  1. Flash the 10.5.A.0.230 firmware using the Flash Tool. kernel link here.
  2. Boot the Xperia up without taking notice of WiFi since it’s not working.
    Tip: those with no credit or plan ought to put this on hold until they do!
  3. Next, you can root the device using any number of options including the Easy Root, rooting from the Flash tool and Towelroot (enable mobile data first).
  4. Turn the Xperia device off completely.
  5. Boot it up again and flash the XperiaZ_10.5.1.A.0.292_kernel_only.ftf file here.
    – use the same Flash Tool once more.
  6. Boot the device up once again and install SuperSU here.
  7. Update the binaries from SuperSu if it prompts the same.

If your smartphone is stuck in a boot loop you must enter recovery mode; from there pick the “wipe data factory reset” option followed by “wipe cache partition.” Go back to where you came from at the main recovery screen and select “reboot system now.” Additionally, you ought to install the root checker app from the Google Play store and verify it’s working.