How to unbrick and prevent bricking an Amazon Fire TV

When you modify the operating system of a rooted Amazon Fire TV, you run into the possibility of making a mistake and “bricking” the device. A “bricked” Fire TV is one which will no longer boot to the home screen. This usually results in the Fire TV getting stuck on the white Amazon boot logo, getting stuck on the colorful Fire TV boot animation, or continuously rebooting at one of those two screens. This guide is separated into three sections. The first section shows you steps you can take now that will help you prevent bricking and ensure you can restore a bricked Fire TV in the event something goes wrong. The second section shows you all the different ways to enter recovery mode. And the third section shows you exactly what to do to reset a bricked Fire TV back to life.

Prevent Bricking

There are a few things you can do to prevent bricking and greatly increase your chances of recovering from an issue that prevents your Fire TV from booting correctly.

Test File Integrity

fire-tv-file-md5-integrity-checkThe best way to prevent bricking your Fire TV is to know how to test file integrity on the device itself, and to perform the test on any file that makes changes to the Fire TV’s operating system. The most common way to brick a Fire TV is to make changes to the operating system with a file that has become corrupted. My guide here lays out the simple steps to perform to test file integrity.

Unlock the Fire TV’s Bootloader

amazon-fire-tv-bootloader-unlock-headerHaving your Fire TV’s bootloader unlocked before an issue occurs is the best way to ensure that you’ll be able to restore your Fire TV to a functional state in the event that a problem arrises. An unlocked bootloader allows you to restore the Fire TV’s operating system using fastboot, which is a small tool (similar to ADB) that can access a low-level mode on the Fire TV. Fastboot is your last resort if you can’t get into recovery mode. If you haven’t done so yet, follow my guide to unlock your Fire TV’s bootloader and follow this guide to verify that it’s unlocked.

Install the Boot Menu

boot-menu-guide-headerThe best way to restore your Fire TV to a functional state is to boot into ClockworkMod custom recovery. If you can get into recovery, you’re almost guaranteed to be able to fix any issues you’re having by simply wiping various partitions and installing a ROM. The problem is that the Fire TV does not have a fool proof way to enter recovery. On Android phones, for example, you usually enter recovery by holding a specific combination of buttons while the device boots. Since the Fire TV has no buttons, this usual method of entering recovery is not an option. That’s why the Boot Menu was created. It gives you the option to enter recovery before your Fire TV begins its usual boot process. If you haven’t done so yet, follow my guide to install the Boot Menu on your Fire TV. It’s also important to ensure it’s functioning correctly by connecting a USB keyboard to your Fire TV and using the boot menu to enter recovery before you need to use it.

Entering Recovery Mode

In order to reset your Fire TV to a functioning state, you need to enter ClockworkMod recovery mode. Use any of the methods below to enter recovery, then proceed to the “Resetting with Recovery Mode” section below. If you’ve tried all the methods below but can’t enter recovery mode, proceed to the “Repair Recovery with Fastboot Mode” section below.

Recovery via the Fire TV Remote

remote-hold-factory-reset-recoveryIf you’re having issues with your Fire TV, this method likely will not work, but it’s worth a shot. Turn your Fire TV on and allow it to boot up as far as it can. Next, press and hold the BACK and RIGHT button on the Fire TV remote simultaneously for at least 15 seconds. What this does is cause the Fire TV to perform a factory reset. However, if you have ClockworkMod custom recovery installed, it will simply cause the Fire TV to reboot into recovery mode and will not actually perform a factory reset.

Recovery via ADB

adb-terminal-iconIf you can connect to your Fire TV via ADB, simply run the command adb reboot recovery and the Fire TV will reboot into recovery mode.

Recovery via the Boot Menu

boot-menu-guide-headerIf you have a functioning boot menu installed on your Fire TV, then entering recovery is simple. All you need to do is connect a USB keyboard to your Fire TV and then power the device on. One of the first things you should see is the boot menu screen. Simply press the down arrow on your keyboard so that the line is under the “LAUNCH RECOVERY” option and press enter on the keyboard. The Fire TV should boot into ClockworkMod recovery.

Recovery via a USB Keyboard

alt-i-print-screen-prntscrn-keyboardIf you’ve tried all the methods above and still can’t enter recovery mode, follow my guide to use the “Alt+i+PrntScrn” method. You will need a USB keyboard with a Print Screen button. This method is a bit difficult to execute, so try it several times. If you are using the Logitech K400 keyboard, a favorite among Fire TV owners, be sure you are also pressing the “FN” key. If you still can’t enter recovery, proceed to the “Repair Recovery with Fastboot Mode” option below.

Resetting your Fire TV

Repair Recovery with Fastboot Mode

If you can’t enter recover mode, then follow the below steps to repair recovery mode using fastboot mode. You will need an A-to-A USB cable to use fastboot mode. If you can enter recovery mode, then you can skip down to “Resetting with Recovery Mode”.

  1. Your Fire TV’s bootloader must be fully unlocked to use fastboot mode.
  2. Install fastboot on your computer.
  3. Turn off your Fire TV and connect it to your computer using an A-to-A USB cable.
  4. Turn on your Fire TV while it’s connected to your computer.
  5. The Fire TV should stop on the screen with the white Amazon logo
  6. Enter the command:
    fastboot devicesIf your computer has correctly detected your Fire TV, you will see a series of numbers followed by the word “fastboot” after entering the above command.
  7. Download the latest version of ClockworkMod custom recovery from
  8. Rename the file you just downloaded to “recovery.img”
  9. Enter the command:
    fastboot flash recovery recovery.img(Be sure to replacerecovery.img with the full path to the file you just renamed)
  10. Enter the command:
    fastboot boot recovery.img(Be sure to replacerecovery.img with the full path to the file you just renamed)
  11. Your Fire TV should now boot into ClockworkMod recovery. Proceed to follow the steps in the next section below labeled “Resetting with Recovery Mode”.
Resetting with Recovery Mode

If you can successfully enter ClockworkMod recovery, then follow the below steps to reset your Fire TV, regardless of what state it is in and what has been done to it. You can also follow these steps if, for example, you want to update your ROM but aren’t sure if you’ve unlocked your bootloader or aren’t sure if you’ve installed the boot menu.

  1. [OPTIONAL] From within ClockworkMod, select the option to “wipe data/factory reset”. This will delete all of your settings and user data. It is an optional step, but is recommended.
  2. From within ClockworkMod, select the option to “wipe cache partition”.
  3. Follow my guide to install pre-rooted Stock ROM version updated. Note, you are NOT installing the latest pre-rooted ROM on purpose. Do NOT skip ahead and install the latest pre-rooted ROM.
  4. Restart your Fire TV. You should be able to boot normally.
  5. Follow my guide to install BusyBox.
  6. Follow my guide to unlock your bootloader.
  7. Follow my guide to install the boot menu.
  8. Follow my guide to install the latest pre-rooted ROM.


  1. J says:

    I have setup many firetv boxes and a few stick… Sticks are what they are, meaning there really good with great WiFi. Great to setup for kids, college, or a spare room setup. The firetv boxes we use as the full media center. I’ve never updated the boxes much. I rooted them, sideload, patch icon after amazon gives me the recent list icons. I just don’t see getting the updates. I can use 2 or 3 tb hard drives. What’s the point of updates when you get nothing but problems. Sounds tuff to update. Wish they had an all in one installer. I use amazon firetv utility app now, adb firetv app hangs to much. I have people asking for more firetv boxes, now I have to start doing the mechanical rooting.

  2. J says:

    Most importantly! If you have root or get root – be sure to block updates using the adb method or with terminal installed on firetv. You can also use terminal on your android device. I just had amazon trying to force me to do updates accrossed all my firetv device’s. I had blocked updates using open dns… I had to unblock all amazon links. But I always use the adb block method as soon so I get root. So the firetv boxes tryed to update aand could not. They downloaded and dumped the download. Tricking amazon, letting me use Amazon prime video again…

  3. Gbo says:

    Hi I had the AFTV stop on the screen with the amazon white logo, I do the recovery mode process a have the following error:

    sending ‘recovery’ (8360 KB)…
    OKAY [ 0.266s]
    writing ‘recovery’…
    FAILED (remote: flashing not allowed for locked hw)
    finished. total time: 0.276s

    Any help will be appreciate

  4. Gbo says:

    Well Apparently no one has this error or just not one can’t solve

  5. Eric Townsend says:

    So, I had a totally unlocked and rooted FireTV and bricked it trying to do update to a newer rooted ROM. At any rate, it is hanging at the black and white Amazon logo screen. I purchased a USB A-to-A cable and can type in “fastboot devices” and get a response of “70900303423302UL fastboot”.
    When I then do a “fastboot flash recovery recovery.img”, it returns:
    sending ‘recovery’ (8360KB)…
    OKAY [0.266s]
    writing ‘recovery’…
    FAILED (remote: flashing not allowed for locked hw)
    finished. total time: 0.297s

    Any thoughts??

  6. Bruno says:

    I tried:
    fastboot flash recovery recovery.img

    Got this:
    sending ‘recovery’ (8360 KB)…
    FAILED (data transfer failure (Unknown error))
    finished. total time: 5.011s

    My bootloader is fully unlocked, but I kinda bricked the FTV during onr of the update processes. Can I still save it somehow via fastboot?

  7. Rodolfo Araújo says:

    Does anyone know?

    sending ‘recovery’ (8360 KB)…
    OKAY [ 0.271s]
    writing ‘recovery’…
    FAILED (remote: flashing not allowed for locked hw)
    finished. total time: 0.289s

    Thanks !!

  8. Dave says:

    I purchase two New fire TV box from amazon and both are stuck at the white amazon logo screen. Is there a fix or I have to return this to them. I can press alt + ctrl + del on the keyboard and it will reboot the box. It doesn’t look like amazon did any quality control on these boxes when they package them.

  9. Someone says:

    I’m betting that your not getting a reply because these posts don’t bump threads. So no one know you posted here. I would try going to the xda-developers forum for some help. That’s where most of these mods and custom Roms are originating. The author of the custom firmware is rbox. I know he’s on XDA!

  10. STEVEN says:

    i need help with my box, i could not get passed the registration screen, and have no serial number to send back. every time i try to set up an account it always comes out as invalid

  11. Mshea says:

    Hi I have a problem with my Aftv. When it boots I see the Amazon logo then the screen either goes black or I get a lots of fuzzy dots . It sounds like it’s still responding to the remote as I can here it clicking . Any help would be great .

  12. Blake says:

    I have the rbox boot menu installed, but have a boot loop. I can get into CWM, but I can’t get a USB drive to work through a USB hub, which is needed for the keyboard to work. What are my options from here? I need to transfer a different rom (but how without USB drive?) or can I fastboot a new recovery and start over?

  13. ian says:

    my firestick boots to amazon logo for about 8 seconds then reboots but it keeps doing this so cant even do the back button and right button reset
    any ideas on what i can do

  14. Jane says:

    Can someone please help me? I haven’t used my fire stick in a while, but it has been plugged into my TV since I first got it. I was going to use it today, when I turned it on I got a message on the home screen about some new update but I could not press the button to continue. The screen is stuck, remote wouldn’t work so I change the batteries; that didn’t fix the problem. I get absolutely no respose. I have not made any changes to the fire stick operating system. Please help.

    • TROJAN4EVR says:

      Unplug it and plug it back in…Press and hold the home button to reconnect the remote with fresh batreries.

  15. TED BARBEAU says:

    Can someone help me? I bought a FireTV yesterday and followed the simple installation instructions: Connect HDMI cable to FireTV and plug it into HDMI port on TV, connect power adapter, plug into AC, turn on TV and follow easy steps…

    Well, all I got was the white Amazon logo. FireTV never booted. I questioned whether the speed of my wireless might be the problem but I don’t have any other issues at home with my laptop, iPad or phone. Plus, I guessed it might boot but the buffering would be slow if that was the case.

    After placing a “not so quick call” to Amazon customer service I was informed that there might be a problem in the software so I should return it to the retailer as it was brand new. The retailer agreed that the software might be the culprit and they exchanged it immediately.

    I took the new unit home, plugged it in and had the SAME problem. What am I missing?

  16. jim says:

    Hi I recently factory reset my fire tv box and now it just stays stuck on the screen that says “Resetting your Fire TV” with the bar showing it at 100%. I’ve let it sit for a day, unplugged it let it sit for hours, and then tried all your suggestion but it keeps going to the resetting screen. Is there anything I can do? I have done tons of google searches and it seems I am the only one this has ever happened to as far as being frozen on resetting screen.
    1st gen fire tv box

  17. Jamrhas says:

    Hello community, I am having problem getting pass the boot screen on the firetv stick 1st gen. Yesterday while listening to aftvnews I decided to root my 1st gen stick running the latest firmware. After many attempt I final got rooted with kingo root, checking the result I notice the kingo root had also install a supersu, I uninstall that and install the recommended supersu 1.94 by chainfire. now this is where it went bad I thing, I also install the firestopper and I thing it was set to bootup first in setting. there was some error showing when it was running I then rebooted it and it got stock at the bootscreen sense. can anyone tell me how to correct this and get back on track.

  18. gargdada says:

    Great guide.. stuck at 1 point.. kindly advice.. installed cmw latest via fastboot & A-A cable.. Recovery is unable to install set_perm: some changes failed.. (Status 7).. kindly advice

  19. lonnie bell says:

    jamrhas needs to reroot using kingo root method and itself will resolve itself

  20. Gobo says:

    Hi Guys. I need your help.
    After rooting with KingRoot and installing rooted ROM, i went to recovery advance wipe per this guide

    when i rebooted, i wanted to know if i was still rooted, i open KingRoot app and it said i was not rooted.

    so i rebooted, entered recovery and went to re-flash the rooted ROM. The system started copying the image; and it just hung there… 10 mins, 30mins.. 1 hour… left it over night! it never finished copying the image. So, i unplug the unit and now it will not go pass the amazon white logo. HELP.

    Thank you.

  21. RooLeY eM says:

    Hey guys…how about soft bricking by disabling ADB and enabling usb and cant get any type of controller connect wirelessly
    I ended up buying a second ftv2 but now i have access to a pc running the unbricabkle 5.1.0 ir whatrver it is so…if anybody would be kind enough to guide me in a direction…would be greatly appreciated…holla!

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