Rooting an Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K
This tutorial will walk you through the high-level process of rooting an Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K (3rd generation of Fire TV Stick, released in ).
Rooting the stick is possible thanks to an exploit uncovered by user xyz on the XDA forums and user k4y0z who created a nice package for executing the exploit. They called this package kamakiri.
Unlocking the Fire TV Stick with root access allows us to install anything we want on it and circumvent the limitations of the stock operating system. For example, here are some of the things that can be done with a rooted Fire TV Stick:
- Get the Google Play store installed
- Install root applications
- Mount external storage
- Replace the launcher
- Block Amazon auto-updates that remove features
- Remove bloatware applications
- Block ads on the homescreen and in applications
- Control Fire TV Stick from a computer
- Set up a SMB server
- NTFS support
- Overclock the CPU
- Use bash automation scripts
- and more!
We’ll only be going over the rooting process and optionally installing Arch Linux on Termux towards the end of this post.
What we’ll need
We’ll need the following items for this tutorial:
- An Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K
- A computer, preferably with Linux
- A USB drive
- A small flathead screwdriver
- A piece of aluminum foil
- An OTG cable
We’re going to use Linux to burn a patched Linux kernel ISO into the USB drive which will be used to boot from and run the exploit on the Fire TV Stick.
We need to make a slight hardware change to unlock the bootloader on the Fire TV Stick. The flathead screwdriver will be used to open up the Fire TV Stick to get access to the small capacitors on the board that we need to short circuit to unlock the bootloader. We’ll be connecting the points with a small piece of aluminum foil.
The OTG cable is for connecting external storage to the Fire TV Stick in order to expand it’s internal storage. The Fire TV Stick has only has 8GB of internal storage which less than 5GB are actually available for use. We install apps or move existing apps into the external storage to free up internal memory which should make the Fire TV Stick a bit more responsive.
The sequence of steps we’ll be taking are the following:
- Open Fire TV Stick case #
- Remove Fire TV Stick heat shield #
- Short circuit to unlock bootloader #
- Download patched kernel ISO #
- Burn ISO to USB drive #
- Boot USB Drive on computer #
- Flash TWRP recovery image #
- Rooting with Magisk #
- Connect Fire TV Stick to TV #
- Install Termux #
- Install Arch Linux #
- Expand Fire TV Stick storage #
It’s important to not that you should do this on stick that has been setup already with an amazon account, since I’ve read that it may not be possible to set it up correctly after it’s rooted.
Also make sure to enable USB debugging by going into the Fire TV Stick: Settings -> My Fire TV -> Developer options -> turn ON for ADB debugging and turn ON for Apps from Unknown Sources
Open Fire TV Stick case
Opening the case is pretty simple; use a tool like a small flathead screwdriver or pry opening tool (like this one) and place it in between the crevice to open it. There’s multiple connecting joints that should pop open without much effort.
Remove Fire TV Stick heat shield
The next part is to remove the heat shield which is blocking the small capacitors we need access to. Use a small flathead screwdriver (a plastic one is preferable) or anything that you can slide underneath to unstick it from the base. The heat shield in on the side without the two square blocky antennas at the end.
The heat shield is held on by two sticky pads and should come off with little effort.
Short circuit to unlock bootloader
We need to create a short in order to unlock the bootloader. The short will put the bootrom in download mode allowing us to flash a custom image.
This is part is a little tricky because the capacitors we need to link are really small. These are the points we are trying to short in order to unlock the bootloader.
Here’s a close up image of the points on the board, showing without any of the metal housing:
Here’s another view showing the points. These points should be connected to the metal housing:
Take a small piece of aluminum foil and fold it loosely until you have a semi-flat skinny stick you can place underneath the part covering and fold it up so it remains in makes contact with the housing and remains in place.
Remember to be careful and not use sharp items or too much force since that could damage the caps and possibly brick the device.
Download patched kernel ISO
Download the patched Linux kernel image from https://github.com/amonet-kamakiri/fireiso. This ISO contains all the necessary applications to connect to the Fire Tv Stick though USB in order to launch the exploit.
The easiest way is to download the ISO with :
Burn ISO to USB drive
Next we need to burn the FireISO image into a USB drive.
I always prefer to use because of it’s simplicity. First find out what device name is your USB drive after plugging it in. In my example I have a 16GB (displayed as G drive) located at .
Unmount the drive if it’s currently mounted:
Now burn the ISO image directly to USB device with . Always make sure the output path is correct to avoid accidentally overriding and possibly corrupting the wrong path or device!
If you’re on Windows then you can use rufus which is a popular GUI for created bootable USB drives on Windows.
Boot USB Drive on computer
Plug in your bootable USB drive into another computer to boot if you have another one or reboot from your current one if not. Go into the BIOS settings by pressing the appropriate function key which will differ depending on your computer model. Make sure that you can boot from the USB drive in the settings and exit BIOS.
You should be seeing a boot screen like this if the computer successfully booted from the USB drive.
Select the first option Boot FireISO using default options and press enter.
Flash TWRP recovery image
The recovery program is called TWRP (Team Win Recovery Project) and allows us to install custom firmware, ROMs (such as Lineage OS), and the ability to back up the entire system.
Open up a terminal in the booted OS and change directory into the desktop. We’ll download all the necessary exploit files here.
A user by the name of flakie has conveniently provided a zip containing necessary exploit scripts and Magisk. Magisk unlocks root access to the device after it’s been flashed with a recovery image. The zip containing exploit scripts is avaiable at https://flakie.co.uk/downloads/4k-exploit-files.zip.
Unzip the contents directly into the desktop:
We need to download a second zip containing the bootloader scripts. The zip is available at https://flakie.co.uk/downloads/4k-extra-files.zip
Unzip the contents directly into the desktop:
And then unzip directly into the desktop too:
We need to go into the directory:
Execute the script to initiate the bootloader unlocking scripts:
Now connect the Fire TV Stick USB to the computer running FireOS. Leave the HDMI end of the Fire TV Stick unconnected for now. The rooting script should detect the bootrom if the short is set up correctly.
If the short was not properly set then you’ll see an error message like this:
Cancel the script with and try again by unplugging the Fire TV Stick USB and making sure that the correct caps are connecting properly on the device to create the short.
Try again running the bootrom script and connecting the USB from the Fire TV Stick.
If the short is set correctly then you’ll see a message saying that it’s been attached correctly. Remove the short carefully and press enter to continue:
The rest of the bootrom logs will be as followed:
At this stage the bootloader is ready to be flashed with the custom recovery image.
Run the script to flash TWRP recovery:
Rooting with Magisk
Now that the bootloader is unlocked we can root it with Magisk. Reboot the device into TWRP recovery:
Copy the Magisk zip file to the location on the Fire TV Stick:
Open up the adb shell:
Install Magisk through TWRP:
Wipe cache and dalvik cache:
Now we want to plug in the HDMI cable into the TV while still keeping the USB cable plugged into the computer.
Run and it should print the device ID followed by the word “device”. If the HDMI cable is not properly connect then it would say “unauthorized” instead.
Go into the adb shell and run . You’ll have 10 seconds to press GRANT on the TV to grant superuser access forever.
Our Fire TV Stick is now rooted!
Disable OTA updates
It’s important to disable OTA (over-the-air) updates from Amazon so they can’t update and override our custom firmware. Disabling OTA updates will still allow individual applications to update as usual.
Use the package manager command in the adb shell to disable the following packages:
Disabling these packages is not permanent and we can reverse this action at any point in the future.
Connect Fire TV Stick to TV
At this point you may unplug the Fire TV Stick from the computer and plug it into the wall outlet as you normally do. The HDMI cable can be plugged in to the TV. You’ll notice the TWRP screen when it’s booting up. You can press the cancel button to stop the normal boot proces and go into TWRP recovery instead.
We won’t be going into how to use TWRP in this post so just continue booting as normal by not doing any action during boot.
It’d be good to put back the case on the Fire TV Stick at this step since we no longer need access to the bootloader.
The following sections are completely optional and you may follow them if you want to install Arch Linux through the Termux.
Termux is a terminal emulator and linux environment for Android. Rooting the device is not required to use Termux or installing Arch Linux but using Linux on a rooted device allows you to install additional packages that require root access such as network scanners and linux containers.
Termux isn’t available in the Fire TV app store so we need to download the apk file indirectly. An easy way to install Termux is through F-Droid, a repository for free and open-source software for Android.
- Install the Downloader app from the Fire TV app store, which can be found by searching “downloader” in the search menu.
- Open the Downloader application and type in the following URL to download F-Droid:
- Click Install on the prompt and wait for it to install.
- Open F-Droid after installation and wait for updates to install.
- Search for “termux” in the search page.
- Install and open Termux.
Install Arch Linux
After opening Termux, install which we’ll need for downloading packages:
Clone the repository https://github.com/SDRausty/termux-archlinux which is a collection of scripts to setup Arch linux in the Termux environment.
Go into the repository and run the bash script:
After a few minutes and if everything goes right you’ll have Arch installed. Run the command to into the arch directory.
You can install packages with as you normally would in Arch:
Expand Fire TV Stick storage
To hook up an external drive such as a USB stick to be used as external storage we’ll need an OTG cable (like this one). The OTG cable will allow our Fire TV Stick to interface with an external USB device.
Here I have a SanDisk USB drive connected to it.
You may also connect a USB hub to connect more USB devices. Here I have a wired mouse and keyboard connected alongside the USB drive for storage. Chaining multiple OTP cables won’t work.
After plugging in the USB drive that you want to use for external storage, we need to format the drive to make it usable for the Fire TV Stick.
Download Remote ADB Shell for the Fire TV Stick or connect to it remotely. You can download the APK through the Downloader app.
With adb shell open, use the command to partition the drive and define how much storage should be allocated for applications.
First list the USB drives and their IDs:
To allocate the entire drive to be used as application storage then use the private keyword when partitioning:
You can use mixed to allocate a portion only. Here we only allocate 50% to be used for private storage:
For example, if you choose 75, then 25% is allocated to private storage.
Now list the mounted USB drives under :
If you should see something like the above if everything went correctly.
Now that our drive is usable to the Fire TV stick, we can go back into Termux and run the command to mount the drive and other useful directories in the home folder:
The important thing here is that is our USB drive that we mounted and now use for storage.
To you’re running low on internal storage and want to move applications to the USB drive, then do the following:
Open up adb shell again. List the applications installed with the command and filter for the particular application you want to move.
Move the application with the subcommand where the first argument is the full application name and the second argument is the UUID of the storage device (which we retrieved earlier with the mount command):
You should now see a USB icon next to the application name in Manage Installed Applications settings screen:
Here’s a list of things that I stumbled across and would be good to know:
- The directory hierarchy in Termux is not the same as a standard Linux. For example, in termux everything is under and there is no . Use to install a standard Linux distribution.
- Termux could not be installed directly on the USB drive because Termux has a lot of package paths hardcoded that rely on the internal storage.
- You can’t execute scripts under the USB drive since it is mounted with the mount option. This option prevents execution of binaries in that mounted filesytem.
- Sometimes git didn’t work when it was in a symlinked directory. See this issue thread.
We learned how to root a Fire TV Stick 4K. This post barely scratched the surface on all the possible things that can be done now on the rooted device. I recommend learning more and trying out all the new things you can do now!
I recommend checking out the following resources to fill in any gaps during this tutorial. These articles are what help me learn about rooting the Fire TV Stick 4K.
Amazon Fire TV
Reboot the Fire TV by holding select and play button at the same time until device reboots
Some of these steps work much better with a logitech wireless key board
The Amazon Fire TV can be accessed with adb over your home network either wifi or ethernet. this is how we can send and install apps manually to it.
you can pick up an Amazon Fire TV HERE
If you want to get your hands on my super tool for this device check out this link HERE
Amazon Fire TV Unboxing and review
Fire TV Setup
How to side load apps on the Amazon Fire TV
Amazon Fire TV root tutorial
How to install the google play store on the Fire TV
Fire TV firmware Update and downgrade
Simple ADB App Installer over IP
Last Updated on 1 year by admin
Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K is the coolest and most affordable tech gadget for movie lovers. Unbranded Android TV boxes may be priced low. But compared to the features Firestick stands ahead.
Main Features of Fire TV Stick 4K
- Dolby Atmos support
- Dolby Vision support
- 4K support with HDR10
- Alexa voice control including support for Smart Home devices
- Remote with Voice support and support for TV Power & Volume
- Amazon video support and support for major 3rd party video providers
Why Root Firestick 4K
Rooting mobile phones opens doors for plenty of extended features. And it’s the same with Fire TV Stick. Here we have listed a few that might get your attention.
- Rooting allows installing Google Play Store
- Install apps that are only compatible with rooted devices
- Changing the launcher
- Storage expansion (external drive)
Hardware requirements for Rooting Firestick
- You should own a fire TV stick 4K, if not it’s time to get one.
- PC that supports Booting through a DVD or USB Flash Drive.
- Need to carefully open up the Fire Stick housing (you can do this without using tools if you have fingernails, if not use a visa card or a shart plastic)
- Next, you need to remove the metal heatshield cover, this may need a flat screwdriver or a nail clipper. The correct side is shown in the image below.
Once you remove the heatshield it should look like this.
- Finally, you need a small piece of foil rolled to short the pins. You can use a small wire instead.
Okay so now we are ready with the hardware. Now let’s get the software ready.
Software for Rooting Firestick 4K
- The root exploit for Firestick require a patched Linux kernel. Therefore it is easy to make use of the live ISO with all necessities which is available on GitHub.
Live ISO download for running kamakiri.
- Burn to download ISO to a CD or USB Flash drive. Creating a bootable USB might need Rufus.
- Now, you may need to download kamakiri-mantis-vzip which is the latest current version.
Finally, we are almost ready for the FireTV ROOT Process.
Root Fire TV Stick 4K with kamakiri-mantis
Please follow the step guide carefully to avoid unnecessary issues during the root process. if you are not certain of the process, go through the guide many times as you may prefer, or feel free to contact us through the comments section.
- Boot the PC using the created ISO (CD / USB Flash Drive).
- Extract the previously downloaded kamakiri-mantis-vzip.
- Open terminal in the kamakiri folder.
Open the Files app >Go to the folder you want to open in a Terminal window, but don’t go into the folder.>Select the folder, right-click on it, and then select Open in Terminal.
- Next, run code ./bootrom-step.sh
- Short the points in Fire TV Stick 4K as shown in the below image.
It is the third port towards the left when you hold as shown in the image.
Dont use tweezers as it could easily knock off the capacitor and destroy the board.
- While having the ports short connect the Fire Stick to the PC. (do not remove the short)
- Next, the script running on the PC should display the message to remove the short.
- Once the short is removed press enter.
- Now, run the code ./fastboot-step.sh
- Firestick should now boot into TWRP.
You have successfully completed the root process.
It is advisable not to use flash boot/recovery images using FireOS (FlashFire, MagiskManager, etc.)
Note Full updates should work without issues. However, TWRP will prevent incremental updates. OTA Updates should be kept disabled.
Special thanks to x d a developers team, Sus_i for providing an update.bin and zeroepoch for developing aftv2-tools.
You may also like our posts on Installing third-party apps on Firestick and jailbreaking Apple devices.
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Its been a few years since hackers discovered how to root Amazons 2nd-gen Fire TV the first time. But Amazon patched the vulnerability used to gain root access with a software update, starting a bit of a cat and mouse game (another root method was later discovered and then lost due to another over-the-air software update).
Which brings us to round three: its now possible to root the Amazon Fire TV 2. Again.
The latest method makes use of a recently-discovered vulnerability affecting devices with MediaTek MTx, MTx, and MT67xx processors. First discovered by xda-developers forum member diplomatic, the new method for gaining root access has been confirmed to work on a variety of devices including:
- Amazon Fire HD 8 (, , and models)
- Amazon Fire HD 10 ( model)
- Amazon Fire TV 2 ( model)
- Asus ZenPad ZM
- BQ Aquaris M8
The 2nd-gen Fire TV is the latest to fall, with xda-developers forum member el discovering that its possible to use the exploit to gain temporary root access (which wouldnt survive a reboot) and then use that to flash a custom recovery which could be used to flash Supersu and root the device.
Theres no detailed tutorial for doing this on your own yet, but you can find an overview of the steps youll need to take at AFTVnews.
While the 2nd-gen Fire TV was released in and has long been discontinued. But its still the most powerful TV box Amazon has released to date, which could make it a better choice for gaming or running other apps that can leverage its higher-performance CPU and graphics.
Newer Fire TV devices tend to be more affordable, smaller, and less powerful (although the current-gen Fire TV Stick 4K and Fire TV Cube both support 4K video playback).
Maybe thats why used Fire TV 2 devices are going for more than their original $ list price on eBay. Im not sure Id recommend buying one today, but if you already have a Fire TV 2 and youve been looking for a way to get more out of it, I suppose its nice to know that rooting is an option. Again.
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Amazon fire tv root
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