How To Install Custom Recovery on Nexus 5 (CWM or TWRP)

Nexus 5 is Google’s latest flagship phone which ships with Android 4.4 otherwise known as KitKat. Even though the stock Android experience is why most users buy Nexus phones and tablets, a large number of users like to use custom ROMs or implement tweaks which are not available by default. To do so, it is important to install a custom recovery which lets you flash custom ROMs and apps on the fly. Once you have installed a custom recovery, rooting also becomes a piece of cake.

How To Install ClockworkMod Recovery on Nexus 5

Before you begin following the below steps, make sure that you have backed up your data and your phone is fully charged. Since we would be unlocking the bootloader, it will erase everything that is on your phone. Also, make sure that you have Android SDK installed and working on your computer before your proceed.

Unlock Nexus 5 Bootloader

  1. Turn off your phone and connect it to your computer
  2. Open the command prompt and navigate to the following location on your computer:
    /android-sdk-windows/platform-tools (inside the Android SDK folder)
  3. Type in the following command to see if your phone is detected:
     fastboot devices
  4. Once you confirm that your phone is detected, type the following command:
    fastboot oem unlock
  5. The phone will show a confirmation dialogue box asking if you want to continue to unlock the bootloader. Use the volume keys to select yes and press the power button to confirm.
  6. Once the process is complete, type the following command:
    fastboot reboot

Install Custom Recovery on Nexus 5

There are 2 types of custom recovery available for Nexus 5: ClockworkMod ( CWM ) and TeamWin Recovery Project ( TWRP ). Both are equally good but if you need a recommendation, you should start with CWM.

  1. Download the recovery of your choice (Links at the end of this article)
  2. Rename the recovery file to recovery.img
  3. Move the recovery.img file from step 2 to this location:
    /android-sdk-windows/platform-tools (inside the Android SDK folder)
  4. Open a command prompt and go to the following location:
    /android-sdk-windows/platform-tools (inside the Android SDK folder)
  5. Type the following command the command prompt:
    fastboot flash recovery recovery.img
  6. Next, on your phone, use the volume keys to navigate to restart bootloader and press the power button to select it. When it restarts, go to recovery mode and you should be able to see the new recovery installed.

Now that you have a custom recovery installed, you can root your phone, install a wide variety of custom ROMs and even tweaks. If you face any issues with following the above steps, leave a comment below and I will be glad to help.

Download ClockworkMod Recovery

Download TeamWin Recovery Project


About the Author

Technology enthusiast, Internet addict, photography fan, movie buff, music aficionado.