Guide to flashing Android with CyanogenMod 13

CyanogenMod 13

CyanogenMod will no longer receive updates going forward. Even though older versions of CyanogenMod are still available for download and installation, you would be better off using its successor, Lineage OS, which was designed to carry on the work that CyanogenMod had begun. For additional details, please refer to our instruction manual on how to obtain and install Lineage OS.

CyanogenMod is a mobile operating system for smartphones that is based on Android but takes a slightly different path than the one taken by Google. In the first place, it offers you even greater adaptability and personalization choices for your handset, in addition to lowering the overall amount of app clutter.

One way to think of it is as Android geared toward more advanced users. However, it is important to note right off the bat that doing so will most likely render your phone's warranty null and void. CyanogenMod is a lot of fun to play around with, but if you don't know what you're doing, you could end up bricking your phone.

To put that in perspective, you don't need to be a programmer or an Android expert in order to use it; the installation process shouldn't take too long on a lot of the major handsets.

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1. Choose your smartphone

Cyanogen has made the process of installing CyanogenMod 13 as easy as it can be, but some devices have an easier time with it than others. Check out the full list of supported devices to see what's available right now. Support for newer, higher-end handsets may not be available immediately after their release.

There are also some unofficial ports of CyanogenMod, but if your device isn't on either list, you might not have any luck for the time being (you can do a quick search on the internet to verify this). For the purposes of this guide, we are using a Nexus 6, but if you are using a phone or tablet that is on the official list, then the process should be very similar for you.

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2. Browse for your make and model

Visit the CyanogenMod Wiki in order to obtain the most recent information regarding the mobile device that you have chosen and whether or not you will be able to get the software to run on it. To begin, click on the 'Devices' link, and once there, locate the phone that you are currently employing. A downloadable operating system and instructions are both offered here.

You have the option of using the cutting-edge, unstable development channel, or you can stick with the release channel, which is the safer option (and the one that we would recommend). Choose the most recent release from the drop-down menu that appears; it will be a large zip file. Save this to your hard drive in a folder of your choosing after you've made your selection.

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3. Install Android Studio

You are going to give the impression that you are an Android developer by downloading and installing Android Studio on your personal computer. This is going to be the quickest way for us to acquire two tools that we are going to require for this endeavor, and those tools are going to be called fastboot and the Android Debug Bridge (adb). You can install it on your laptop or desktop computer by downloading the version that is compatible with your operating system.

The good news is that you do not need to actually learn how to make an Android app; all we need is Android Studio in order to install the CyanogenMod 13 zip file that we downloaded earlier. The next step is to unlock or root your phone, either of which will result in the voiding of your warranty (as was previously mentioned). It's the last chance to turn back now.

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4. Enable USB debugging

Choose 'About phone' from the menu that appears on your Android device's Settings app, and then tap the Build number seven times. Return to the Settings menu, where you should now see a new entry labeled 'Developer options.' Navigate to this section of the settings and move the USB debugging slider to the on position to enable access to your phone's inner workings through adb and fastboot.

On the page for Developer options, some phones will have an OEM unlock option, which you should also enable if you have one of these phones. Now that you are ready to connect phone to computer, use the USB cable that was included with your device, and check to see if there is a message on the screen of your phone and tablet indicating that USB debugging is enabled.

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5. Unlock your device

The following step requires you to unlock your device by using the fastboot and adb tools that we installed with Android Studio. Using File Explorer on Windows, navigate to C: Users AppData Local Android sdk1 platform-tools. Right-click anywhere within the window, and select Open command window here from the context menu that appears.

After putting your phone into a special access mode by typing "adb reboot bootloader" and hitting Enter, you can unlock the handset so that it can be used with CyanogenMod 13 by typing "fastboot oem unlock" and then hitting Enter. After the device completes the restart process, you will need to enable USB debugging once more, just as we did in the prior step.

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6. Install TWRP

Next, we need to install a tool that will allow us to install CyanogenMod 13, and TWRP is recommended for the job. Once again, find the right download for your device, and download the standalone file (it will end Next, we need to install a tool that will enable us to install CyanogenMod 13. img) Transfer it to the directory where the adb and fastboot utilities are located (see the step before this one for more information).

To return to the bootloader, first type "adb reboot bootloader" followed by pressing the Enter key. Now type "fastboot flash recovery recovery_image" when prompted. img," and then enter the name of the TWRP image that you have just downloaded in its place. After the custom recovery has been copied over, select Recovery Mode by pressing and holding the Volume Down button. To confirm, press the button labeled "Power."

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7. Install CyanogenMod 13

Following the completion of all of those steps, you are at last prepared to install CyanogenMod 13 on your device. phew Find the CyanogenMod download that we obtained back in step 2 (from this list) and place it in the same folder as adb. Then, using the command "adb push filename," transfer the file to your device. zip /sdcard/" in order to transfer it to your mobile device (phone or tablet).

It's possible that finishing the transfer will take a few moments. When it is done, open the TWRP app and select the zip file you just transferred over by tapping on the 'Install' button. After that, swipe along the bottom of the screen to start the installation process, which will then be completed. You should see CyanogenMod 13 after you tap the Reboot System button.

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8. Troubleshoot CyanogenMod installation problems

For the sake of brevity, we have breezed through those steps very quickly and focused exclusively on Windows (and not said much about adb and fastboot) - if you find yourself lost after reading this, please refer to the previous section. You should be able to get back on the right track by following the instructions for your chosen device that can be found on the CyanogenMod Wiki.

Do not become disheartened if you experience difficulties in completing this process; it can be quite complicated at times. Often, you will just have missed out one step, or the proper procedure for your device will just be slightly different - a quick web search for CyanogenMod and your phone's make and model will often turn up some potential troubleshooting tips.

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9. Get started with CyanogenMod 13

CyanogenMod may, at first glance, appear to be quite similar to Android; however, there is a significant amount of room for customization and experimentation within this operating system. For example, you can change the appearance of the status bar, gain immediate access to a fully functional file manager, and create multiple settings profiles that are tailored to specific environments (such as while driving). (both at the office and at home, for instance)

When you install CyanogenMod 13, you are only provided with the most fundamental apps to begin with, which is exactly how it should be for the majority of users. If you want to be able to install additional themes and the apps that you are accustomed to using on top of it, then we will need to return to adb and TWRP in order to install a Google Apps component.

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10. Install Google Apps

First, go back through steps 4 and 5 to enable adb once more. Next, navigate to the Google Apps page and follow the links to locate the appropriate download for your specific device. Finally, copy and paste the downloaded file into the same folder as adb and fastboot, just as you did in the previous step. If necessary, reconnect your phone to your computer using the USB cable.

Reopen the command prompt while you are in the appropriate folder, and type "adb push filename" into it. zip /sdcard/" to copy the Google Apps file to your device. To enter recovery mode, type "adb reboot recovery" into the command prompt, followed by launching TWRP, selecting Install, and then browsing to the appropriate zip file. Clear the cache and then restart your device when prompted to do so.

On your device running CyanogenMod 13, you can now access all of the standard Android applications; however, it is important to keep in mind that CyanogenMod does not officially support this feature. If you require further assistance or are interested in conducting additional research, the CyanogenMod Wiki and the CyanogenMod Forums are both excellent places to begin your search for answers.

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