Installing a corrupt ROM or other critical file seems to be the most common way people are “bricking” (i.e., rendering unusable) their Amazon Fire TVs. Files can be corrupted when downloaded or when being transferred/pushed to the Fire TV with no indication that something has gone wrong. That’s why it’s important to test a file’s integrity on the Fire TV itself before using it to replace critical parts of the Fire TV operating system. It’s not enough to test files on your computer after downloading them. My past and future guides will now all include steps, which reference this post, to test file integrity.
The way to check a file’s integrity is to calculate its md5 value. An md5 value is a 32 character alphanumeric value that is unique to each file. The website that you downloaded the file from should have listed the file’s md5 value, sometimes called an md5sum value. I list each file’s md5 value on my ROM and recovery download pages in the notes area next to each file. If the md5 value you calculate using the guide below matches the md5 value listed on the download page, then you know the file has been transferred to your Fire TV intact and can safely be used.
- Follow my guide to install and setup BusyBox on your Fire TV, if you haven’t done so yet.
- Transfer the file to be tested to your Fire TV, if you haven’t done so yet.
- Connect to your Fire TV via ADB, if you haven’t done so yet.
- Run the command:
- Run the command:
/system/xbin/busybox md5sum PATH-TO-FILE
Be sure to replace PATH-TO-FILE with the full path to the file being tested.
- After a few seconds you will see 32 alphanumeric characters displayed, followed by the file’s path.
- If the 32 characters displayed match exactly to the md5 characters listed on the file’s download page, then you know the file is intact and can be used.
- If the characters do not match, you should delete the file from your Fire TV using the following command:
rm -f PATH-TO-FILE
Be sure to replace PATH-TO-FILE with the full path to the file being deleted.
Then re-download and re-transfer the file to your Fire TV and repeat this guide.
- To exit out of adb shell, run the command: