Unrevoked: How To Root HTC Android Phones (EVO 4G, Desire, Droid Incredible)

Recently, the Android rooting community is seeing the One Click root trend, such as the Samsung Galaxy S root on Windows, and Mac OSX. Similar to this root, we now have a single click root for several HTC Android phones, including Spring EVO 4G (HTC Supersonic), Droid Incredible (HTC Incredible), HTC Desire, HTC Aria, Droid Eris (HTC DesireC), and HTC Wildfire (HTC Buzz).

Unrevoked, the one click root for HTC phones, started off as a root for HTC EVO 4G and now supports several other phones. For those who are still wondering whether to root, here are some of the reasons: you can get custom ROMs on your device, for instance putting HTC Desire ROM with the Sense UI on Nexus One, perform nandroid backups, lots of customization to the UI, enabling some features such as Tethering and so on.

Here is how you can root your HTC Android phone using Unrevoked.

Note: At this time, unrevoked3 does NOT work on stock Froyo (Android 2.2) phones. The current version of Unrevoked is 3, however due to some bugs they have taken it out and are currently offering only Unrevoked 2 for download. Windows users should install the HBOOT drivers.

A Note for Windows users

You need to install HBOOT drivers on Windows (steps given below). Also you need to uninstall HTC Sync, DoubleTwist or any other program that tries to access your device via USB. Simply disabling these applications will not stop them from interfering with the root process, so uninstall them completely before going ahead. Otherwise you may see ‘Waiting for system to settle’ message, hanging the program.

Install HBOOT drivers on Windows

1. Download the modified USB drivers for Unrevoked (link at bottom).

2. Reboot your phone into the HBOOT menu by holding the POWER and VOLUME buttons down.

On EVO 4G, you will have to select HBOOT USB at that menu by pressing volume down four times, then power. Wait until the screen flashes through an “SD Checking” message before pressing buttons; otherwise, the phone will ignore key presses.

3. Now connect your phone via USB cable to your PC. Wait for the HBOOT USB PLUG screen on your phone.

4. Open Device Manager on your PC. Go to Start Menu –> Control Panel –> Device Manager.

5. Under the Other devices, you will find your Android device. Right click on it and select Update Driver Software.

6. In the following dialog, select ‘Browse my computer for driver software’. Now select the driver software you downloaded and continue to install it.

7. Once the installation is complete, you should be able to find Android Bootloader interface listed under the newly added item Android Phone.


Unrevoked Root And Reflash

Simply download the program for your OS. Unrevoked3 is now available for Windows, Linux, and Mac OSX.

Windows users, make sure you installed HBOOT drivers before you proceed with this tool.


The tool only unlocks the NAND flash sufficiently long to flash the custom recovery, ClockworkMod. Because of the mechanism that unrevoked2 uses, it is infeasible to leave it unlocked for longer. For this reason, the tool functions as a single unit–if any one part of it doesn’t work, the NAND flash may not even be unlocked! After the reflash tool finishes running, the phone’s hardware automatically relocks NAND flash.

Flash Custom ROM

If you want to flash a custom ROM, then you need the ROM’s .img file. This should be a binary file suitable for flashing, and not a .zip file. Note that your recovery partition will be inaccessible until a proper image is used to flash.

Download HBOOT Drivers

Here are the download links for Unrevoked 3 (v3.14 with ClockworkMod Recovery 2).

Download Unrevoked 3 For Windows

Download Unrevoked 3 For Linux

Download Unrevoked 3 For Mac OSX

Want to get the latest information and downloads? Go to Unrevoked website and choose your mobile phone, to download the latest firmware.

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27 Responses

  1. Ihab says:

    Any update on flashing the ROM to bootloader 0.83

    After I bought my brand new Desire, I updated the firmware through OTA to FROYO and 0.93 Bootloader. After alot of attempts, I downgraded the bootloader from 0.93 to 0.83. All the tutorials supports only versions 0.8 and below. So I tried to search for another downgrade to bootloader 0.8, but I found alot of responses from other people complaining from a blank screen and others from bricks, so I decided to avoid this downgrade.

    Now, I am still stuck with the 0.83 with the “FAILED (remote:43 main version check fail)” error. I figured out after a lot of research that the bootloader version is the reason (higher than 0.8) supported in the tutorial steps.

    I also used unrevoked 3 to do flashing and rooting, but I ended up with a non working recovery mode it just bring me back to the fastboot mode.

    What shall I do? Please HELLLP

  2. spy says:

    Yeah I’ve the same problem. My HTC Desire is branded on 3Mobile Uk abd have a 0.83 bootloader. Still struggling to root it.

  3. spy says:

    YEAHHHHHHHAAAAAAAAA I just rooted my HTC Desire. I just followed the above instructions. peace of cake. Thanx a lot.

  4. Kevin says:

    I tried using this for my EVO, but am unable to get to the HROOT USB selection. The volume down button doesn’t move when it boots up. It just stays on HROOT and I get a “FAIL” message.

  5. rveach says:

    Is ROOTing the same as jailbreak and will it void any warranties on the phone?

    • dkszone says:

      It depends on your network provider as well as manufacturer.
      Some cellular network operators have clear guidelines saying that rooting voids warranty.
      Also it may void warranty only if you return the rooted phone to them.
      It may not be any problem if you unroot your phone and do a factory reset before claiming warranty.
      Do check your network provider as well as manufacturer policies.

  6. native says:

    Unrevoked 3.21 works great. Go to unrevoked.com

    • riserice78 says:

      I just tried unrEVOked 3 on my htc desire (using mac), and it worked great!!! thanks to this article and unrEVOked!

  7. Litening says:

    Getting the right drivers installed on your PC is a pain especially if you’ve had HTC Sync installed before.

    This is what I did to get the right drivers for Unrevoked to do its magic:

    – install the HTC Sync pack (this also installs the right ADB drivers. I tried, but installing them separately did not work on my PC).
    – Close HTC Sync app if it is running (right click in righthand corner of program tray)
    – Uninstall HTC Sync (only HTC Sync! leave HTC drivers in place)
    – Download HBOOT drivers via link on this page and unpack in a place you’ll be able to find again.
    – Boot Desire in HBOOT and connect to PC.
    – PC will recognise new hardware and ask to install the drivers.
    – Follow the instructions for installing the drivers as described in the article above.
    – Now you will have the right bootloader and ADB drivers installed for Unrevoked to do its magic.

    Hope this helps people…

    P.S. I rooted stock 2.2 ROM with HBOOT 0.93 version.
    Unrevoked (v3.21) needed 2 runs to succeed in rooting my Desire after that.

    • sarin says:

      When i tried root my desire PVT4 device with unrevoked 3.22, i am getting message like “waiting for root..”
      I found that during the rooting(actually this is happening after the reboot just before the rooting process starts) my ADB driver is not recognized by the system. i have tried in three windows systems (win xp,vista & 7) and two linux systems(ubuntu & slax) and but i got same result.So i think this is the reason why i cannt root my desire PVT4 device. can you tell me how to overcome this issue then it will be really helpful for me.

      • Antony says:

        For ADB you can install this driver (from HTC Sync package):

        Working fine for my HTC Desire, rooted 5 minutes ago!!!

  8. vibr0 says:

    i installed it once and i rooted my htc desire android 2.2 froyo with hboot 0.93 version….for those who still cant work it out check and watch at you tube to get better understanding of the method of rooting ur phone thanks to the article and you tube

  9. jason says:

    When you need to go back to oem and unroot,
    Simply install a ruu with your provider. That’s it.

  10. Litening says:

    @Sarin I don’t know which ADB driver you used.
    Using Microsoft’s drivers did not work for me.
    Did you follow the instructions I left before?

  11. train says:

    rooted my phone before had a sprint update that did not take BUT it did clear out my phone tethering does not work anymore , does not even look like it is rooted anymore , so i trying to run unrevoke 3 the program opens up and that is all nothing happens/???????

  12. keschnitzler says:

    hi, tried to root my desire with 0.93 hboot wit unrecoked 3.21. neither on xp nor on win7 64 unrevoked recognizezs the phone when connecting to pc. adb drivers are installed proberly and both installs were virgin, without any contact to android ever before. what may be the reason

  13. Litening says:

    @Sarin, I don’t know what might solve your problem then.
    I had OTA Froyo too as I had to unroot my Desire to send it for repairs.

  14. joey says:

    do you have to have an sd card to root the htc evo 4g?

  15. Riz says:

    At step 3 (“Now connect your phone via USB cable to your PC. Wait for the HBOOT USB PLUG screen on your phone”), on my Eris, HBOOT does not change to HBOOT USB PLUG when I connect the phone via USB cable. Any idea why not?

  16. kaz says:

    i downloaded driver for windows from the link above….and
    follow instruction…..and
    step 6…..device manager can’t find usb driver…
    any help?

  17. Megajohnd17 says:

    Trying to root my wife’s incredible, I cannot get the phone into hboot mode. Doing it exactly as it says and it will not boot into that. Any sugggestions?

  18. Megajohnd17 says:

    Trying to root my wife’s incredible, I cannot get the phone into hboot mode. Doing it exactly as it says and it will not boot into that. Any sugggestions?

  19. Megajohnd17 says:

    Trying to root my wife’s incredible, I cannot get the phone into hboot mode. Doing it exactly as it says and it will not boot into that. Any sugggestions?