How to Root your Droid X

Droid X, the latest Android phone, landed to iffy reviews. Despite the great hardware, Motorola larded it with unremovable crapware, and locked down the operating system so you can't load an alternative version of Android without triggering a kill switch that leaves it in a useless 'recovery' mode. The first step to beating it: rooting your Droid X. [Droid X Forums]


  1. Exactly why I bought a HTC Incredible last night. I wanted the Droid X to be a good phone but the bootloader issue kayboshed it for me.

    btw.. Incredible is $50 off retail at

    I still love my iphone but now I live in a 20 mile AT&T dead zone while Verizon has a 3G cell tower less than a mile from me.

    1. I suspect the reason they didn’t spend a huge amount of time on the Android 2.1 interaction is that it’s due to be replaced by 2.2 within a month of launch.

      I have the Droid X and I love it. The larger size makes it easier to type for people with big hands (me), the screen is glorious, and I must have big pockets because it feels less bulky than my old BlackBerry Curve.

      Personally, I’d rather have a couple items of crapware, the vast majority of which are removable in five minutes or less (seriously, would a couple widgets stop you from getting a whole phone?), than a phone which doesn’t work (due to AT&T’s network – forget the antenna) and which traps me into Jobs’ vision of how my phone should be.

      I think the Incredible is great who want something more pocketable. After the next update, it will be even better…

      1. Imag, I completely agree. This phone rocks. Unless I go looking for them, the unwanted apps aren’t bothering me.

  2. Damn. I wish I’d bought this open and free phone instead of my proprietary and locked down iPhone.

  3. The claim that the Droid X had “iffy” reviews, is pretty iffy to me. I have done a great deal of research on this phone, and the majority of the top tech sites have raved over its features and hardware. While I agree that the UI has some weaknesses, it appears the benefits far outweigh the negatives. See:,2817,2365630,00.asp

  4. For a little clarification, the link Rob posted saying that the phone “self destructs” is a little bit misleading. Motorola responded to this by saying:

    If a device attempts to boot with unapproved software, it will go into recovery mode, and can re-boot once approved software is re-installed.

    So while the phone WILL go into a useless recovery mode until you put the “approved software” back on, you can in fact still get the X back up and running on your own. The article in question makes it sound as though the phone is bricked until Motorola or Verizon can fix it.

    It’s a subtle difference but it means that you can in fact still get your phone up and running without having to turn the phone in to be fixed because you did “something naughty”.

    I have been following this phone like a hawk as well and am really hesitant to buy anything Motorola puts out. I will feel comfortable buying their hardware if I can get stock android or better yet the HTC Sense UI skin of 2.2, I will be all over it.

    Still waiting…

  5. I can understand why the carriers and companies like Blockbuster want to pre-load their stuff on phones. I don’t particularly have a problem with pre-loading.

    What bothers me is when they make it is so you cannot uninstall the software. All software has bugs. Lots of these bugs can be exploited and the result is a security problem. How nice will it be when somebody figures out how to exploit a bug in one of these permanent programs?

    Slightly offtopic- what the hell is wrong with Blockbuster? Is it their corporate mission to piss off as many people as they possibly can? They come up with a good idea (like streaming video) and always find a way to make it suck.

  6. Here is a new 3 star product. Here is how to (void your warranty and) make it a 4 star product. This is why I read.

  7. Why do companies do this?

    This is one of the biggest annoyances of buying high tech electronics like computers these days. If you’ve tried cleaning a new Acer/HP/Dell or many others you may have found parts of that cleanup quite hard.
    Doing this (or even worse) to phones just shows that companies still have not gotten the message that this is uncool.

    Heck, even Apple isn’t this bad. They may have the whole “locked OS” thing, but no crapware. A clean Apple installation truly is clean.

  8. I haven’t had any issues with mine, I love it. The apps/widgets I don’t want I just don’t use. Maybe it’ll be an issue in months when I’m lacking for space, but by then it’ll also have Froyo where I can install apps on the SD card.

    It’s the Android phone I’ve been waiting for and I love it. I have no fear that it’s only a matter of time before I’m able to put custom roms on it.

  9. A: Because they are a cell phone company.

    Up until iPhone, the prevailing policy was that users should upgrade their hardware (and lock in another two-year contract) rather than get OS bugfixes.

    The real reason that the Danger Device (T-Mobile HipTop) failed: They didn’t have Steve Jobs calling the cell phone company, to scream at them. Every. Single. Day. And yes: scream.

    It’s still possible to buy a cellphone which WOULD have a USB port to load media or software, except that the carrier has instructed the manufacturer to CUT the data wire. This costs money, yet they do it.

    I take it that at the moment, it’s not possible to buy an Android phone that will upgrade to OS 2.2 (Google sold the last of them the other day.) If I understand correctly, all the other phones will not upgrade until the carrier-specific “added value”-ware is updated.

  10. From the linked article:

    “Verizon spokesman Ken Muche said the carrier and Motorola “worked together on what apps shipped with phone to give customers a broad feel for what it can do.”

    Yeah, I can imagine how this went:

    Verizon: So what have you guys done since the RAZR?

    Motorola: Look, please take this phone. We’ll do anything you want.

    You tell me who’s responsible for the locked crapware.

  11. You’d have to be clueless to buy any Motorola Android phone for the forseeable future if they’re prepared to pull the “we own it, you are our serfs” e-fuse routine.

    oh well, make s a good competitive edge for other less douche-bagging manufacturers.

  12. Ok, listen… to “root” means to have intercourse. I thought your heading was saying “how to have sex with your robot”.
    Also FYI, rooted = f…ed = broken, as in “goodnes me, it would appear that this object is rooted” (the said object being absolutely anything that is breakable).

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