How to Root the Sony Xperia Z and Install a Custom Recovery w/o Unlocking the Bootloader (Video)

Sony Xperia Z

Want to root your Sony Xperia Z but don’t want to go through the hassle of unlocking the bootloader? Or maybe you’re one of the Xperia Z’s that can’t have the bootloader unlocked? Either way, here’s a quick and easy way to root the Sony Xperia Z and flash a custom recovery on it without an unlocked bootloader.

I. Before You Begin

1. Thanks to Doomlord. If this procedure helped you, please head here and donate/thank him!

2. Thanks to DevShaft. If this procedure helped you, please head here and donate/thank him!

3. Thanks to Cpasjuste. If this procedure helped you, please head here and donate/thank him!

4. Check to see if your device’s bootloader can be unlocked by doing the following:

Open the phone app
Dial *#*service#*#*
Tap Service Info > Configuration > look to see if bootloader unlock is allowed or not.

If it says no then this is the procedure for you. If it says yes then you can either continue with this procedure or head to our How to Root the Sony Xperia Z with Unlocking the Bootloader procedure to truly unlock your device’s true potential.

II. Root the Sony Xperia Z

1. Enable USB debugging by going to Settings > Developer Options and checking USB Debugging on.

2. Enable Unknown Sources by going to Settings > Security and checking Unknown Sources on.

3. Increase the screen timeout to 10 mins by going to Settings > Display > Sleep > Change it to 10 mins.

4. Download the easy rooting script for locked bootloaders and save it to your desktop.

Rooting Script

5. Extract the rooting script by double clicking the rooting script .zip file.

6. Plug the phone in via USB.

7. Open the rooting script folder and double click the windows .bat file.

8. Hit Enter in the command prompt on the computer and wait for it to finish.

9. Once done, the device will reboot and you have root access.

10. To fix something with the bootloader not being able to be unlocked after using this root method, open the doomlord rooting folder then files inside that.

11. Hold shift on your keyboard and right click in any blank area of that folder and select Open Command Prompt Here.

12. Type the following into the command prompt with hitting enter at the end of each line:

adb shell
rm /data/data/

III. Backup TA to Keep DRM Keys (Optional but highly recommended so you have these saved if you ever want to flash roms and then return to completely stock).

1. Download the TA Backup script and save it to your Desktop.

Backup TA (download link is in the first post on that page)

2. Extract it by double clicking the .zip file.

3. Open the folder that appears.

4. With the device still plugged in via USB, double click the Backup TA .bat file.

5. In the command prompt window that opens, type X and hit enter. Wait for it to finish backing up.

IV. Flash a Custom Recovery Image (Optional)

1. You can either start using root required apps from here on or you can continue below to flash a custom recovery to be able to do backups, flash kernels, ROMs, etc.

2. Download the Recovery installer app.


3. Copy the apk to the internal storage of the Xperia Z.

4. Unplug the Xperia Z.

5. Open File Commander on the device and then click on the apk file and install it.

6. Open the app and click install recovery (Grant superuser permissions).

7. Click reboot recovery.

8. Once in recovery, go to Backup and then select backup and wait for it to finish.

9. Select reboot system now.

10. All done, you are rooted, running a custom recovery without having to unlock the bootloader, and have all your DRM keys saved.


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