How To Root Your B&N NookColor

We’ve seen Angry Birds running on the new e-reader from Barnes & Noble, showing that it’s capable of more than its stock offerings, but the party isn’t over yet. Some developers from have published a guide for rooting your NookColor. It’s still quite experimental, but it works. We highly recommend using it only if you know what you’re actually doing and don’t mind the possibility of bricking your tablet. NookDevs provides a clear explanation of what the purpose of the root is:

The current rooting process will enable you to install apps on the Barnes & Noble NookColor using either SCP (a secure copy program) or ADB (the android loader from the android SDK. The process will also let you SSH into the nook and execute command line commands there.

Check out the full rooting guide after the break.

Source: NookDevs

Image Source: Engadget


Disclaimer: NookDevs nor AndroidGuys is responsible for bricking your device. You’re doing this all on your own risk.

What do I need?

  • You need a B&N nookColor
  • You need a 64 MB or higher microSD card that you are willing to completely erase.
  • You need access to a computer.
  • the computer must be able to read and write a microSD card.
  • the computer must have a working USB port to talk to the nook.
  • Any apks you would like to install

This process can be done from a Linux, Windows or Mac machine. If you are on windows you will need a windows DD program. This one [1] may work. Mac users should have a dd program.

And what do I do with it?

  1. Download Pokey9000’s “nooter” file:
  2. Unzip it using your favorite unzipper.
  3. Write the microSD card image
  1. For Linux Users:
      • Bring up a terminal
      • Navigate to the directory you unzipped the microSD card image to
      • If you are running in Linux, Ensure your microSD card is unmounted (run as root)
  • § # umount /dev/<sdcard>

where <sdcard> is your sdcard (this will be something like /dev/sdc, not the mount point of the sdcard) Don’t just copy the term <sdcard> you need to know the name of the sdcard’s device. Please be sure you’re writing to your sd card and not to your hard disk. This is dangerous.

      • write the image to your microSD card. (run as root)
        • WARNING: This will completely erase your microSD card. Be sure to back it up!
  • § # dd if=sdcard_40mb.img of=/dev/<sdcard>
  1. For Windows users: You can find instructions for writing a DD image in windows here: but be very careful, since if you designate the wrong target you could overwrite your hard disk instead of the sd card. Be very careful. Note that Vista and Windows7 users will have to use a Volume GUID like \\.\Volume{6c284f7a-f64f-11df-84a3-00219be2d9e2} for the target after identifying it with dd –list.
  2. For Mac Users: you can find instructions for writing images to disk on mac osx here: the same warnings apply. Be very careful.
    • Remove the microSD card from your computer.
  1. Boot the nook with the microSD card.
    • Shut the nook down completely. Hold the power button for 15 seconds.
    • Put in the sd card
    • Plug the usb cable from your NC into your computer. The nook will attempt to boot.
    • Nothing should appear to happen. If you’re using the Nook cable, the charge LED might blink
    • In about a minute, your computer will see a new USB device.
      • In Windows, it will probably complain about missing drivers unless you have USB ethernet drivers installed (unlikely). If you are planning to use the ADB to install apps, then you will need the windows USB drivers which are a downloadable part of the Android SDK. See details here:
      • In Linux it will show up as a CDC ethernet and serial combo device
    • Once the devices show up, wait another 30 seconds and remove the card
    • Hold down the power button for 15 seconds again, let go, then hold for another 2

At this point, the nook firmware has been modified to enable SSH and ADB connections. If you have installed the the Android SDK you can now install apps directly using the ADB program in the SDK once you add the Nook Color vendor ID to your adb setup.

The NC vid is 0x2080

Other connection methods

The following instructions are for individuals who wish to experiment with the command line via SSH and/or install apps via SCP rather than downloading the sdk and using adb.

Connect to the nookColor with ssh with the following command.

  • When prompted for a password, press ENTER.

NOTE: If your ssh session dies without warning, it is likely you have a network manager interfering with you usb0 device. You may need to close it to continue.

NOTE 2: If the above two commands don’t work, try the following command as as root.

# ifconfig usb0; ssh [email protected]

You can also copy the apk files for the apps you want to install on the nook into the app folder on the nook using SCP.

  • Start a new terminal on the linux box Do not close the terminal you already have that is ssh’ed into the nook. This is a seperate process.
  • Navigate to the location of the apks you downloaded
  • Execute the following command for each apk you wish to install.
    • Where <apk> is the file name of the apks you with to install
  • When prompted for a password, just hit ENTER

You will need to change the mode of the app files

  • Switch back to the SSH terminal session.
  • Execute the following command
  • # chmod ugo+r /mnt/app/*

Reboot your nookColor

  • Still in the SSH terminal window
  • # reboot

Remove the microSD card from the nook

11. Power on your nook by long pressing the power button (for atleast 10 or so seconds) twice. You can stop pressing when the LCD flashes.

13. Your apps should appear in Extras (or LauncherPro if you installed it)


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