Tutorial: Update Rooted Shield Tablet K1 (1.x to 1.4)

If you root your Shield Tablet K1, chances are likely you will not be able to use OTA (Over The Air) updates.  Symptoms of this is an open-chest Android robot with the word ERROR under it after an update reboot.

This tutorial will take you through taking a rooted 1.x Shield Tablet K1 to OTA 1.4 without losing your personal data.

Note: There are a number of ways to perform this procedure as noted in the comments. We will be using a non-adopted microSD card for this tutorial instead of trying to work around doing ADB pushes and dealing with people using Adoptive Storage. Power users may find faster ways in the comment area. We have not tested any of these alternative methods.

[eliteaccordion][elitetoggle title=”Step 1: Pre-Requisites and Warnings”]

  • Two files on a fresh microSD card, inserted in your Shield Tablet K1 (never been adopted, not encrypted – recommend you don’t use the one you regularly use in your K1; freshly formatted is always the safest)
  • Shield Tablet K1 in Bootloader, plugged into PC
  • Fastboot drivers installed on PC
  • Shield Tablet K1 shows up in “fastboot devices” under Minimal ADB and Fastboot DOS box.
  • The Bootloader must be unlocked (but it should already be unlocked from your previous root).
  • TWRP 3.0 (if you have an earlier version, the instructions will be slightly off) already installed or the ability to boot to TWRP via Minimal ADB and Fastboot.
Note: We are fully aware that this version of TWRP is not the latest – but we have fully vetted it and we know it works. We will attempt to vet the newer versions as they come out.
Note: It is strongly recommended that you rename your extracted TWRP image file to something easier to type like “twrp.img” and that you rename your SuperSU downloaded ZIP to something easier like “supersu.zip”. We leave the file names exactly how they appear from the source to help keep track of things and because the filenames often reveal details about the version of the file (beta, wf for WiFi, etc.)
Tip: TWRP works a lot easier if you have a mouse plugged into your tablet via a USB OTG dongle/device. Once you boot to TWRP, insert the mouse and click a couple of times and you should see a pointer come up. Navigating TWRP is far more responsive.

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[eliteaccordion][elitetoggle title=”Step 2: Update Procedure”]

  1. Insert your microSD card.
    1. Turn off/shut down your Shield Tablet K1.
    2. Insert the microSD card with the two files listed above.
  2. Connect to PC
    1. Plug your Shield Tablet K1 into your PC
      Note: Not all USB cables are created equally!  Those included with cheap portable batteries, etc. may NOT be reliable enough to handle data transfer.  Using the one included with your smartphone is usually safe as it is rated for charging AND for data transfer.  Not all USB ports are the same.  Some on the back of the PC may work better than those on the front.  If you use a USB 3.0 port (you can tell if it is blue inside) and you have issues, try a USB 2.0 port.
    2. Make sure Minimal ADB and Fastboot is running on your PC
  3. Enter Bootloader
    1. Hold VOLUME DOWN and press POWER.  Keep holding the VOLUME DOWN for a few seconds until you see the Bootloader (black screen with some fine text on top)
  4. Verify the Shield Tablet K1 is in Bootloader mode
    1. Type “fastboot devices” in the Minimal ADB and Fastboot DOS box and hit enter.  If you see the Tablet K1 show up, continue.
  5. Execute TWRP
    1. If you have TWRP installed, select Recovery Mode from the Bootloader menu and skip to step 6.
    2. In Minimal ADB and Fastboot DOS box, type “fastboot boot twrp.img” (or whatever you have it named) It takes 10-20 seconds to get to TWRP; be patient.
      Note: TWRP on K1 is extremely flaky with UI refreshes.  Your actions may not immediately show up.  You often have to tap another location on the screen that is a valid control.  This can be very frustrating.  However, once you get used to it, it is almost an art form. Watch the video above; jump to the 3:30 mark.
  6. Mount your Storage
    1. Tap Mount and mount everything you need.  After tapping the check boxes, use the “refresh” icon in the upper right to make sure your selections were accepted.
    2. Tap Back to return to the main TWRP menu
  7. Install the update
    1. Tap Install
    2. Tap Select Storage
    3. Choose MicroSD card (if it says 0 bytes, the mount above didn’t work).
    4. Tap nv-recovery-sb-na-wf-1.4-full.zip – you should see Install Zip on the top with a swipe to install on the bottom.
    5. Slide the Swipe to Install.  This installs the OTA Full update.  Takes several minutes.
    6. Do not reboot – hit the Back button.
  8. Install SuperSU
    1. Tap supersu.zip (or whatever you named it)
    2. Slide the Swipe to Install.
    3. After SuperSU is completed, hit the Reboot System button.
    Note: This first boot may take up to ten minutes or more to complete – and may include a couple of reboots. This is dependent on the number of apps that Android has to “upgrade” during the first boot. You will see an Android is Upgrading screen after about 45 seconds – which gives you an idea how much longer it is.
  9. Clearing the OTA Notification and Finish
    1. If you get an update notification, tap it and it will recheck and tell you that you’re updated already.  Verify your root and version.

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[eliteaccordion][elitetoggle title=”If Something Goes Wrong”]

Fighting with TWRP’s flakey interface is likely to be the worst issue you face.  There is always a chance your freshly formatted microSD card with the files won’t be seen by TWRP or you went against “medical advice” and tried to reuse your existing card.

Don’t panic.  It is pretty hard to permanently “brick” the Shield Tablet just by trying to root it.

No matter what may go wrong, flashing a stock image should put you back in working order.

Follow the instructions in our Tutorial: Restore to Stock Image K1

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[eliteaccordion][elitetoggle title=”Changelog”]

  • 2016-09-14: Updated tutorial and files for OTA Full 1.4.
  • 2016-06-17: Replaced bad OTA Full 1.3 File (678MB): MD5 = 8b237ac14e07b890d09f089a7c3fcf3d
  • 2016-06-16: Updated to support OTA 1.3
  • 2016-04-15: Initial Tutorial.  Thanks to 0x6170 and Mister_E for their contributions.

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28 Responses to Tutorial: Update Rooted Shield Tablet K1 (1.x to 1.4)

  1. administrator says:

    Something weird with the Download Plugin on WordPress. I believe I have it fixed. The download should be 714MB with an MD5 that matches the one listed in the changelog.

  2. Downloaded it again, now got it right! Thanks!

  3. I updated my K1 to 1.3 but in About Tablet -> SHIELD tablet software version it says 4.1(24.3.67.35). Is that normal? Shouldn’t it says 1.3?

  4. 0x6170 says:

    A little tricky to update in case you do not have access to a computer and have only a single microsd card which is already set as adopted storage. When you have adopted microsd there is no easy way to tell which directories are stored on the internal storage and which are on the microsd. Because you can’t use the adopted microsd storage as twrp does not see this storage (due to encryption and security), you cannot know where to move your downloaded OTA file in order for twrp to see it.
    I only managed to update the tablet without access to pc by having the downloaded OTA file copied to the USB OTG storage and then mounting this storage in twrp and installing the update from there.

  5. Hey… What is the file password for this nv-recovery-sb-na-wf-1.1.1???

  6. Waikel Timothy J. says:

    I’ve had no issues thanks to this tutorial and file postings. I want to thank you for all of your work. It has been VERY helpful.

  7. I did it a very simpler way:

    1. Update to 1.4 through OTA
    2. Go in Fastboot
    3. Update boot with TWRP: fastboot boot twrp-multirom-20160410-UNOFFICIAL-shieldtablet_m.img
    4. Once in TWRP, hit INSTALL
    5. On PC, upload SuperSU to tmp: adb push BETA-SuperSU-v2.71-20160331103524.zip /tmp
    6. On Tablet, select /tmp, SuperSU zip will be there. Click it.
    7. Slide to install
    8. Reboot.

    Interestingly, my SDCard is adapted, I never removed it, and I did not lose anything. It went like a charm, simple, a few minutes.

    Cheers!

  8. Grzegorz W says:

    Is there any plan to release 1.5 upgrade to update without data loss?

  9. Has the v1.5 ota full zip been released yet? I wanna update without losing my root and data.

  10. Will this work for 1.5 update?

    • administrator says:

      Unfortunately, this tutorial requires a “full OTA” update package (which NVidia did not provide).

      The alternative method of updating presented in various comments may do the trick.

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