New Fire TVs may Block Rooting during Initial Setup

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Due to the Fire TV going on sale for the first time, there are a lot of new Fire TV owners out there. Before firing up your shiny new Fire TV for the first time, there are a few things you should be aware of if you have any interested in rooting. It is unlikely that Fire TVs shipping this week will arrive with the new firmware that just started rolling out which blocks rooting. However, during the initial setup, the Fire TV checks for and installs updated firmware. There is no prompt to decline the update; it just does it all automatically. There is a chance your new Fire TV will install this latest firmware before you get a chance to block it, resulting in an unrootable Fire TV. I have ordered a new Fire TV specifically for the purpose of figuring out the best way to setup a new Fire TV while keeping the ability to root. The Fire TV arrives Saturday. If everything goes well, I expect to put up a post that evening which will guide you through the best way to setup a new Fire TV without jeopardizing the option to root. If you have any interest in rooting your new Fire TV, I suggest waiting for my guide on Saturday.

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8 comments
  1. Humberto says:

    I did this some day ago on my second Fire TV with the current firmware, I previously have blocked the firmware updates from my router and I forget that so on the initial setup I was getting errors and won’t let me continue, then I remember that and I removed the block from my router and it worked, then I found out that the firmware was not the last one, it was the first one, so I guess for some reason the initial setup didn’t update the firmware to the last one, that was my experience.

    • Osc000 says:

      Humberto is right
      This is exactly what happened to me too.!!
      I purchase 2 FTV from besbuy Monday 11
      And I don’t have a block on my router
      So I begin the initial set up and the box did not install the latest firmware so I began to root and install xbmc and it works find

    • william says:

      I bought 2 fire tv from amazon and it didn’t do any automatic software update. I got another fire tv from staples and it did the automatic software update. It updated to the latest rootable version. After it rebooted, it was still using the older version. I then immediately went to systems, about and saw the newer version being in the installation process and it gave me the option to CANCEL the update. I cancelled it and then it prompted me with “the update will later continue when the fire tv isn’t being used”…. I immediately rooted it and blocked OTA updates. So if anyone gets a fire tv being updated with a unrootable version, quickly go to systems/about and cancel the update after the opening reboot.

  2. tuxen says:

    A good idea might be to force it intto recovery at first boot pressing sysctrl+i several times until all processes die forcing forcing to get straght to recovery and flash a rom that can be rooted ?

    • AFTVnews says:

      You can’t force an upgrade/downgrade via the Alt+Sysrq+i method. That is only useful for factory reseting if you can’t get to the homescreen (i.e., soft bricked).

  3. Jose M says:

    As I type this right now I’m installing XBMC kodi on a brand new just opened amazon TV. I bought this yesterday and yes I did noticed there was an update on the initial boot up that took some time that didn’t happen on my last AFTV. However there was STILL an update to do which is the 5_1_1 one and I did it. I went ahead rooted/ ran towelroot/ disabled updates via DOS and like I said loading XBMC kodi right now as I type this via ADBFire. Take it for what it’s worth I think we are still OK for now. But still gonna be around for Saturday to see your findings.

  4. Jason says:

    XBMC or KODI Will work rooted or not just so its clear. I get asked all the time if i can’t root the fire how will i get XBMC on it. People seem to be thinking to the days of the apple Tvs that you can’t root or jailbreak in apple case you can’t install XBMC

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