Tutorial: Root Shield Tablet (Marshmallow)

This root procedure works on all known Marshmallow versions on the Shield Tablet.

[eliteaccordion][elitetoggle title=”NOTE TO ADOPTIVE STORAGE USERS!”]If you have already enabled Adoptive Storage on your microSD card, you will not be able to push/flash SuperSU using the method below.  I recommend you remove your adopted microSD and insert a blank or “portable” memory card.  Better yet, if you have an OTG device, put SuperSU on that, and select that storage during the flashing of the SuperSU zip file.[/elitetoggle][/eliteaccordion]

Pre-Requisites

Note: Unlocking the bootloader will ERASE EVERYTHING internally (not on your external SD card if present).  Make sure you have everything saved off and backed up.  You’ll have to resign into Google – so if you use two-step authentication, be sure to have your Google Authenticator app ready.

Preparation

  1. Install Minimal ADB and Fastboot if you do not already have it installed.
  2. Ensure the Shield Family drivers are extracted somewhere on your system and you know where they are.
  3. Make sure you know how to get to Device Manager on your PC.
  4. Extract TWRP Recovery image (and do yourself a favor and rename it to something easy like twrprecovery.img). Put this in your Minimal ADB and Fastboot folder (usually c:program files(x86)Minimal ADB and Fastboot).
  5. Copy supersubeta.zip into your Minimal ADB and Fastboot folder
  6. Plug your Shield Tablet into the PC with USB cable.
  7. Confirm drivers for ADB are installed:
    1. On your PC, go to Device Manager.  Find the yellow (!) ADB device.  If none exist, you probably already have drivers.  Skip to step 8.
    2. Right click the device and select Update Driver.
    3. When offered, browse your computer for the driver and point it to the Shield Family Drivers folder you extracted in Preparation Step 2 above.
    4. When finished with the driver install, the (!) yellow device should be gone.
  8. Enable Developer mode on Shield Tablet
    1. On the Shield Tablet, go to Settings->About->Build (tap 7 times on the BUILD to unlock developer mode)
  9. Enable USB Debugging on Shield Tablet
    1. Settings -> Developer -> Debugging; set to On
    2. A popup should appear asking for this PC’s authorization.  Check the Don’t ask again for this PC box and select Allow.  If it doesn’t show up now, it will later.

Root Procedure

  1. Reboot into Bootloader on Shield Tablet
    1. Launch Minimal ADB and Fastboot from the Start Menu or icon.  This puts you in a black DOS box.
    2. Type “adb devices” and make sure your Shield Tablet appears.  Note: If you didn’t have a popup on your Shield Tablet screen in Step 9.2 above, it probably will appear now.  You’ll have to authorize the PC before it will show up under adb devices.
    3. Once you see your Shield Tablet when you run “adb devices” you’re ready to proceed.
    4. Type “adb reboot bootloader” and hit enter.  The Shield Tablet K1 should reboot into the bootloader screen.
  2. Verify Fastboot Drivers are installed:
    1. On your PC, go to Device Manager.
    2. See if a yellow (!) exists that mentions FASTBOOT.  If not, continue to Step 3 to unlock bootloader.
    3. Right click the device and select Update Driver.
    4. When offered, browse your computer for the driver and point it to the Shield Family Drivers folder you extracted in Preparation Step 2 above.
    5. When finished with the driver install, the (!) yellow device should be gone.
    6. Type “fastboot devices” and make sure your Shield Tablet is visible.
  3. Unlock Bootloader (skip if you already unlocked your bootloader)
    1. Type in “fastboot oem unlock” and hit enter.  EVERYTHING ON THE TABLET WILL BE LOST!
    2. You will see a prompt on the Shield Tablet.
    3. Confirm to unlock the bootloader. Do not be impatient!  Let it finish.
  4. Reboot to Shield Tablet Interface
    1. Once the bootloader is unlocked, reboot the Shield Tablet and return to the Shield tablet main interface.
  5. Repeat Preparation Steps 8 and 9 above to re-enable Developer/USB Debugging.  Note: at some point you will have to re-authorize your PC again; if an ADB command fails, be sure to look at your Shield Tablet screen for the authorization prompt.
  6. Push supersubeta.zip to the Shield Tablet
    1. In the Minimal ADB and Fastboot DOS window, type (or cut and paste for more accuracy): “adb push supersubeta.zip /sdcard/”  
    2. You should see text indicating the file was copied over correctly.Note: If this fails, you’ll need to do a MIGRATE DATA back to your internal memory instead of your adopted microSD card.
  7. Reboot to Bootloader
    1. Type “adb reboot bootloader” and hit enter. The Shield Tablet should reboot into the bootloader screen.
  8. Fastboot with TWRP
    1. Type “fastboot devices” and make sure your Shield Tablet is visible.
    2. If your Shield Tablet is listed, type “fastboot boot twrp-20151227-EXPERIMENTAL-shieldtablet-m.img” (or whatever you named it) and hit enter.  If your TRWP image filename has a space in it, you may have issues.
    3. After 15 seconds or so (be patient), you should see the TWRP Recovery screen.  Note: This experimental version has some UI issues, just keep at it.
    4. You may be prompted with something to do with the system being READ ONLY.  Accept the default and swipe.
  9. Install SuperSU
    1. Select INSTALL.
    2. Navigate and select supersubeta.zip.
    3. Follow the instructions to Swipe to Flash
    4. SuperSU will install.Note: If you are using a pre-recall Shield Tablet, this is when you would want to flash the notegraota.zip (2529 downloads) (MD5: 145543d4c42c9cf6d2604eb9336d0cf0).  99.9% of you won’t need to do this.
  10. Reboot to System
    1. Select REBOOT then SYSTEM from the TWRP menu
    2. Answer NO if asked anything about fixing or restoring ROOT
  11. Run SuperSU application and apply any updates
    1. Once you are back up and running (first boot can take a little longer) find the SuperSU app installed on the Shield Tablet.  Run it and perform any upgrades (select “Use Normal” if asked).
  12. You are now rooted!  Test your root apps now.

If Something Goes Wrong

First, 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
[eliteaccordion][elitetoggle title=”Changelog and Credits”]
This tutorial assumes you are running a Shield Tablet (not Shield Tablet K1) and you have the OTA installed that upgrades you to Marshmallow.

  • 3/7/2016 – Updated TWRP and fixed some typos.
  • 2/20/2016 – Initial Version

[/elitetoggle][/eliteaccordion]

59 Responses to Tutorial: Root Shield Tablet (Marshmallow)

  1. Faraon says:

    Thanks man 🙂
    I have successfully rooted a v1 shield (recalled one).

    Though, in the step 8.3, the TWRP menu didnt appear automatically, I had to select RECOVERY MODE and enter with power button (as described in your tut for K1 tablet).
    Cheers

    • administrator says:

      Did you FLASH or BOOT TWRP? I used BOOT on the Shield OG – not flash. Dunno.

    • Had the same issue but I was not able to select reboot! Got a little scared but just be patient it finally did reboot into twrp…that said, after I got root everything started to run very buggy on the tab! So I ended up unrooting it and using Kingo-root for Android. I didn’t even need to connect to a PC! You will need to have the tab unlocked but Kingo-root worked well.

  2. does this work on the k1 tablet

  3. forget that comment every time that i search it up it takes me to the original shield tablet root tutorial.

  4. I followed this tutorial to root my shield tablet , not the k1 and although it was successful, when the tablet booted to the main interface, superuser apk did not work, no updates and i got the message no applications configured. So I decided to flash the stock firmware it came with, followed all instructions and now its stuck on the boot screen – it’s been hours its like this. Switched off, booted to bootloader, hit recovery mode and it takes me to the twrp menu. No option worked for me there! Every time i hit recover, i get the same result – help urgently needed please!

    • administrator says:

      Can you get to bootloader (aka fastboot)? When you do, can you do a “fastboot devices” on your PC and get the device ID listed?

      Worst case, drop into the Shield Zone Chat and see if we can help you. My schedule is a little packed tonight, but we’ll get you recovered – don’t worry.

  5. Thanks for the tutorial. I was able to successfully root my Nvidia K1 Shield.

  6. Never mind, sorted out – managed to flash the original stock firmware

  7. j_hosk says:

    Thanks again for your help in the chat room! I successfully rooted an original shield.

  8. I follow the instructions and when I try to flash twrp recovery, it keeps saying that the bootloader is still locked. I have followed every step but still the same message. Can you please help?

  9. Thanks. Its been about 6 years since I have rooted an Android. Its good to be back in it. Forgot how much fun it was to tweak a device. (Selling iphone now)

  10. iblue001 says:

    Hey im stuck the nvidia shield tablet isnt even showing this “adb push supersubeta.zip /sdcard/” help

  11. tony stark says:

    in root procedure, i can’t do the point 8.2 😐

    can i have some help please? thanks

  12. Maxim Kouprianov says:

    Works fine for Nvidia Shield Tablet K1! Awesome, thanks!

  13. Yavga says:

    I cannot get this done on my shield tablet K1 6.0.1
    Nor any other root method.

    The problems arise as my device is never recognised as fastboot device. I tried it on 2 laptops. I never get any yellow errors within device management so there is nothing to update. Also tried downloading drivers manually but with no luck.

    So I’m stuck at “root step 2, verifying fastboot device”

    Apparantly there is some kind of soft-root called Kingsomething but that one is neither working.

    Any help witrh this would be greatly appreciated.

    Regards,

  14. SuperPspnoob says:

    I’m wondering if I can use the /sdcard0/ for the supersu?

  15. Manish Kumar says:

    unable to flash any update with twrp..need help.. with each ota file the error.. comes– ” package expects build fingerprint of nvidia/sb_na_wf/shieldtablet:6.0.1/MRA58K… this device has nvidia/omni_shieldtablet/shieldtablet:6.0.1/MOB30D/ “

  16. Jeremy Duck says:

    By doing this root does it do away with the Nvidia SHIELD only apps? Such as the Shield hub and the shield only games like portal and Half-life2?

  17. Jeremy Duck says:

    By performing this root does it remove the ability to have Nvidia only apps such as Shield Hub and Nvidia only games such as portal and Half-Life 2?

  18. I got up to the past where I type “fastboot oem unlock” but it gives me “FAILED (command write failed (Unknown error))”

    • administrator says:

      The slogan of the website; “Having a problem? It’s probably your USB cable.”

      Every time I see this error, it is the USB cable.

      USB cables are not created equally. In fact, not even close.

      Use a premium designated DATA USB cable – like the one that came with your phone. MANY USB cables cannot handle this process. Most USB cables that come with power batteries, etc. are really only good for charging – and while they may sometimes work for data? They seem to fail this part every time.

      • AnuIcarus says:

        You were right about switch the cord! As soon as I did success. It did not show up in adb devices, but I tried the command to unlock and it worked! Thanks!

      • Cory Kielion says:

        This is not always the case and implying that it is always the problem is not constructive.

        In my case, it was because I was plugged into the USB 3.0 I/O panel on my HAF-X case. Something about USB 3.0 ports connected in such a manner seems to cause some kind of issue in a lot of applications.

        Such was the situation in my case. Knowing this, I relocated my original Nvidia SHIELD cable to my onboard USB ports and tried again. Same cable… Same process… But this time it worked.

        So much for that pretentious slogan.

        Additionally: This tutorial needs a clean-up… It’s poorly laid out.

        Otherwise… Thanks for the useful bits of info. I was able to extrapolate the full, sequential process on my own.

        • administrator says:

          I’ve been working technical support for 20+ years. When you see the EXACT same issues – day in and day out – you tend to lean there first. Glad you got it figure out – and as always appreciate the backhanded compliment.

    • AnuIcarus says:

      I’m getting this same error, FAILED ((command write failed (Unknown error)), this happens after booting into Fastboot. After getting this error the first time, I can’t even get the device detected in fastboot anymore, it shows up in Windows as Bootloader Interface, but no adb apparently. HELP ;-(

  19. I am not able to find supersubeta.zip in the install section of TWRP image menu. I have confirmed the presence of supersubeta.zip in the /sdcard/ where it should have been pushed, although it’s not visible in TWRP install. Please help!

    • administrator says:

      You’re probably using adopted storage, right? /SDCARD/ isn’t the same location when you’re booted and running as it is when you’re in TWRP.

      I recommend you use an OTG drive if possible – or a microSD card to hold supersubeta.zip

  20. jon detlefs says:

    I have a rooted shield tablet with 5.1.1. I want to upgrade to marshmallow. How to do this? Please help.

    • administrator says:

      You should be able to sideload the update, even rooted. Otherwise, you’ll need to roll back to the last stock recovery and update to 6.x – and reroot.

  21. Hi, will this work on 6.0.1?

  22. Jefferson Panis says:

    If I root, will it get rid of the features that were there before such as the stylus, twitch integration and gamestream?

  23. Giggle Fish says:

    Nice tutorial, but one thing I’d update is giving people the latest link to twrp, as that version is buggy as hell. 🙂
    Obviously telling people to choose the latest one. Hope it it helps!
    https://dl.twrp.me/shieldtablet/

  24. Lucard LOL says:

    hi, I did everythig but now all app data is temporary example: download mavel contest of champion from the playstore every thing is fine but when I reboot the tablet all the obb data is gone the same if i download an apk and paste the obb everything is gone :c please help me

  25. My Shield Tablet is stuck on the nvidia boot screen, the one that says nvidia powered by andriod

  26. Cat Lover says:

    Hi i sucessfully root my shield tablet k1 but after that i cant connect to google server. I tried to reset my tablet set it to default but still cant connect. Do you know what happen and how to fix it? Thanks

  27. Nick Fisher says:

    Hi admin, great post and thanks for writing this up. Im encountering a problem, I got to step 8.2, and upon typing “fastboot devices” i get nothing. “adb devices” shows the shield, so im wondering why it isnt showing up with the other command. Without this, I cannot load the twrp image file to my shield, so it kinda stopped me in my tracks. Any ideas you might have would be greatly appreciated.

    • administrator says:

      Fastboot and ADB aren’t the same driver. You’ll have to go to Device Manager and add a driver for fastboot too. Hit me up on Email and I’ll try to help ya more

  28. Adrian B says:

    Hi. I originally rooted my Shield Tablet just fine using this method, but I recently got the OTA Software Update 5.1 (Android Nougat) and so had to re-root. I flashed SuperSU from an OTG drive (I have adopted storage) and all seemed to have gone well – got the successfully installed message – but when I reboot the tablet there is no sign of SuperSU and the tablet isn’t rooted. Any ideas?

  29. I’ve followed the guide, it worked great, but after finishing step 11, it hangs on the initial nvidia logo screen. i’ve tried accessing the bootloader screen, but none of the options give me a different result. The longest its been going is over an hour, should i leave it going overnight, or should i do something else?

  30. solved the problem, turns out having the latest versions of TWRP and superSU was all it needed. thanks so much for the guide, worked like a charm.

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