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How to: Root the Verizon Galaxy S4

Verizon Samsung Galaxy S4

A root method for the Samsung Galaxy S4 on Verizon is already available, which isn’t all that surprising since launch day is today. This is a solid method as it doesn’t require you to fully wipe your device by flashing a pre-rooted factory image nor does it require any skills with adb, so in other words, it’s pretty simple. It does require ODIN, a few files, the flashing of a prerelease kernel, and Dan Rosenberg’s Motochopper. Ready to do this? 

*Note – This entire guide was pulled from this XDA thread. I highly recommend you head there for full support and to give thanks.

*Note 2 – This has nothing to do with the bootloader. We’re assuming that unlock will come at some point, however, this will simply root your device.

Step 1:

  1. Download and Install Samsung Official USB Drivers – Link
  2. Download and extract ODIN v3.07 – Link
  3. Download the VRUAMD2 Prerelease Kernel – Link
  4. Download the VRUAMDK Stock Kernel – Link
  5. Download and extract the Motochopper Root Exploit Tool – Link

Step 2:

  • Boot phone into ODIN mode (See here for how-to)
  • Flash the VRUAMD2 Prerelease Kernel using ODIN v3.07 ***in PDA section only*** (See here for guide on flashing)
  • Boot back to Android and verifying everything is still working and kernel has flashed successfully

Step 3:

  • Verify in Security setting on your device that you have “Unknown sources” checked
  • Verify in Developer options setting on your device that you have “USB debugging” checked
  • Verify in Developer options setting on your device that you have “Verify apps via USB” unchecked
  • Connect your phone to your computer and open “Run.bat” file from the location you have extracted motochopper to
  • If successful, after your phone reboots, check if SuperSU has any update in the Play Store
  • Open SuperSU app and let the binary update itself to the latest ***VERY IMPORTANT OR YOU WILL LOSE ROOT ON STEP 4***
  • Once complete, just open a root application and verify that is able to access root properly

Step 4:

  • Boot phone into ODIN mode (See here for how-to)
  • Flash the VRUAMDK Stock Kernel using ODIN v3.07 ***in PDA section only*** (See here for guide on flashing)
  • Boot back to Android and verifying everything is still working and kernel has flashed successfully
  • After your phone boots back to Android, you should now be fully rooted and on the fully original stock firmware as the device came

Via:  XDA

Cheers Open1Your1Eyes0!

  • samer

    my s4 does not work after rooting what i should do?

  • Adam

    Just downloaded the latest firmware on 9 July 13 for my verizon GS4 and tried to flash the kernal given on this site to root my phone and was not successful. Any update for the new firmware?

  • oh! very great

  • great! i want have one smart phone

  • Galaxy S4 Guy

    I tried the above steps to root my att S4 and the way it worked for me
    is running motochopper “As Admin”. Hope this helps people having issues.
    This page assisted us in rooting…….


  • Thanks for giving me the useful information. I think I need it. Thank you

  • Beth Ransom

    Is this root reversable?

  • cdd

    More complete instructions (like how to det developer mode turned on) here http://www.android.gs/root-verizon-samsung-galaxy-s4-on-android-4-2-2-jelly-bean-without-factory-reset/

  • Ultrabook

    If you have already rooted your Galaxy S4, I highly recommend you to change the value of cpucore_min_num_limit to say 2 to undervolt it, thus increasing battery runtimes.

  • joe

    After flashing the Kernel I can’t seem to find SuperSU but I do get a message saying ”
    Device detected an application attempting unpermitted access”
    or osmething

  • Now Samsung just needs to release a patch to give the user back Gigabytes of storage space …. me, personally though, am buying the 64gb microsd card and rooting my phone to install apps externally ….

  • mcdonsco

    damn, did this and can’t find “entitlement check” to switch it to 0 to get free mobile hotspot (always did this on my moto’s, apparently it’s not there or is completely different on Samsungs? It’s the ONLY reason I root!

    Anyone know where it is?

    • Not required. Don’t even need root.


      You’re welcome. 🙂

      • mcdonsco

        That’s the first play store app I’ve seen that ACTUALLY WORKS…Thanks!

      • Daniel Vee

        YOU ARE A GOD.

        • Kyle Daniels

          Third Party Wifi Tethering Apps no longer work as of the latest Verizon and AT&T updates. There is some work arounds for them, but they are not 100%, mine keeps kicking me offline randomly.

          I use the press for VZW Account (Top Option), and press home, but the phone randomly closes the background app which kicks me offline.

  • my phone just stays stuck on “downloading…do not turn off target!!”…the only way to get out of that screen is to take out the battery

    anyone have a solution? am i doing something wrong? thanks for any help you can provide!

    • Frankly Jive

      have your phone plugged in when on that screen and use odin 307 🙂

  • Dabruise

    When i ordered the S4 i totally thought i would end up rooting it and going stock android . I got it yesterday and i can’t put it down. This will be the first phone i won’t root.

    • Remnant

      Why not root it anyways, but leave Touchwiz untouched? You’re able to keep what you like + root. Can’t go wrong with that.

      • new user

        I am new to this but why root? What benefit is there?

        • for future. if you want to flash a custom rom cause you’re sick of waiting for samsung to push the update.

      • Dabruise

        Eh. The root process kind of stresses me out. Like going to screw up my phone. I just want enjoy it

    • solomonshv

      wait until you realize that you only have 8GB of space to work with for installing apps (Samsung phones don’t allow you to install or run apps from SD cards). then you’ll be singing a totally different tune.

      mine also has network issues, at random times i lose access to the internet. i have to restart it at least once a day.

      • Dabruise

        Maybe you got a bad one. I am constantly using mine and haven’t restated once

  • coolsilver

    Sorry Motorola… I’m sold. Going to try to get phone without losing unlimited data.

    • lectrode

      You need to add a line to retain unlimited data

      • Kyle Daniels

        If you have a basic and smartphone on your account and the smartphone is due to upgrade, do an “Alternative Upgrade”, and you will keep unlimited that is what I did to upgrade my bionic to the S4 with Verizon and I still have my unlimited, and only paid $199 for the phone.

  • KleenDroid

    Enjoying my new S4!

  • “prerelease kernel” scares me…

    • No need to be scared, you flash back the original one at the end of the process. 🙂

    • Embrace the fear; dance with it!!!

  • Hothfox

    Nice! I’m always a little disappointed, though, when I can’t use ADB to unlock and root a device, like on a Nexus. It just feels dirty/wrong/like cheating when we have to use random programs and flash this and that.

    • Hothfox

      LOL at downvote. Sorry, I just like typing in the code myself.

      • Stewie

        I gave you an upvote, apparently there are more interested in having an app do the work for them. IMO there is nothing worng with that, but if it fails, those same people come a whining about how to solve. At least if you do it thru ADB you can determine at what point something failed, etc. This is NOT a flame to those dependent on an app, just that also IMO, if you are going to let an app do something to your phone, shouldn’t you have at the very least have an understanding of what it’s doing?

        • Hothfox

          Exactly. Once you know what actually goes on when you root a device, one-click away. Some people don’t even know what root DOES, just that “YAY, NOW I CAN MAKE MY PHONE PRETTY”.

          • trophynuts

            i’ve always been a big fan of doing it via ADB first. I hate toolkits. All toolkits are good for is to get noobs in trouble.

        • Brian Sargent

          I don’t understand why I should understand what the process is that makes it work. I drive a car…I have no idea how an internal combustion engine works. When it breaks, I either run to a mechanic or, more likely, I will hit the internet to see what I might be able to do to fix it. I have always been interested in root. I don’t care how I get it…i just want it. If I use an app or a toolkit and something goes wrong, I am going to the internet to see if someone who knows about this stuff can help me fix it. To me, this stuff comes across as “Android arrogance”. Not everyone gives a rip about the inner workings of root and how to get to it. If it was necessary to be an expert in this stuff why is it posted on sites like this so that anyone and everyone can easily do it?

          • andrew

            No ones paying these developers to do the work for you. Open source is a beautifil thing, but feeling entitled is a bit arrogants, aye?

          • Brian Sargent

            Sure it is…but my comment has nothing to do with entitlement. If the root doesn’t work and somehow my device is hosed, the fault is on me. I just have issue with the attitude that you shouldn’t be doing this to your phone if you don’t understand the process.

      • Complaining about downvotes? Here, let me help: http://i.imgur.com/Tqmss.gif

    • mcdonsco

      Agreed…I wont root unless its a clean run.bat only…no flashing involved especially when words like “prerelease version” are involved.

      sooo…still waiting for root.

      • Hothfox

        Yeah, that’s not to say I haven’t used one-click-root methods before, but usually just when I get desperate. Granted, I also am not smart enough to write these one-click programs, etc. so there’s that, I guess.

      • JackTheRipper

        It’s easy, no issue with the current root, took less time than the one clickers. Just follow the instructions.

  • coolsilver

    Get me AOSP or Paranoid Android ROM and I’ll drive to Verizon to throw cash at them

  • T4rd

    Now please post an article showing me how to turn on and use my GS4. I want nothing but news/posts about the GS4 today! =p

  • Geoff Johnson

    Thanks XDA and Droid Life 🙂

  • I think Dan released the unlock just a bit ago.