Unlock Bootloader, Install TWRP and Root ZTE Axon 7 (A2017G)

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ZTE Axon 7 is one of the best mid-range phones available out there. The phone houses a Snapdragon 820, QHD screen resolution, 20MP rear and 8 MP front camera with a decent 3250 mAh battery enough to last a full day. I mean what else one can get in a 400$ price bracket. This phone is seriously nuts. Moreover, the front firing stereo speakers on the Axon serves as an icing on the cake.

Nevertheless, those were some brief specs mentioned out there. However, the main purpose of writing this post was not to talk about specs. So, let us do the things for which we are here. In this post, I will be describing in detail on how to unlock the bootloader, install TWRP and root on the device itself. Thanks to Tennear, Unjustified Dev, DrakenFX, and Starvirus of XDA. Without them, this post would not have been possible.

Install TWRP Recovery on ZTE Axon 7

Prerequisites

  • Make sure your device is at least 60% charged
  • Temporarily disable your antivirus program (To allow axon7tool to work)
  • Backup important data to your PC (Basically from the Internal Storage)
  • Download minimal fastboot and ADB tools (Unzip the files into ADB folder so that you can easily access it later)
  • Download the axon7tool (Place the file in the ADB folder)
  • Finally, download the TWRP image file (Place the image file in the ADB folder)
  • Make a copy of the recovery.img file and rename it to recovery.bin (Do this in the ADB folder)
  • Make sure USB Debugging and OEM Unlock are enabled (Settings» Developer Options)

Warning- This will void your warranty. We at DroidViews won’t be responsible for any type of data loss or damage you incur to your device. Please do some research before flashing or unlocking the bootloader. However, we ensure you that if you follow the steps correctly then you will land in no problems.

Steps to Install TWRP Recovery

  1. Connect your Axon 7 to the PC.
  2. Hold Shift + Right Click» Open command window here (Do this in the ADB folder).
  3. Type,
    adb devices

    and hit enter (A device will be listed by its code name).

  4. Then, type,
    adb reboot edl

    and hit enter (Your device will reboot into EDL mode. If it appears off then don’t worry. That is the nature of EDL mode).

  5. On your PC, navigate to Control Panel» Device Manager and check whether the device is listed as QUSB_BULK or not (If not then check the troubleshooting section below).
  6. After that, type in the command prompt
    axon7tool -r gpt boot recovery 

    and hit enter (Your device will reboot).

  7. After the device has booted, type,
    adb reboot edl 

    and hit enter.

  8. Now, verify if you have 3 backup files gpt, recovery and boot in the ADB folder.
  9. Then, in the command prompt type
    axon7tool -w recovery 

    and hit enter.

  10. Wait for it to be executed and then your device should reboot.
  11. After the device reboots, power it off.
  12. Then, reboot into TWRP recovery (To do so hold both Power and Volume Up button until droid logo).
  13. After this, if the TWRP recovery asks for a password then, simply click on cancel.
  14. If asked to modify system settings then swipe to agree.

If you follow the steps correctly then you will have a working TWRP installed on your ZTE Axon 7.

Troubleshooting

  • If your PC doesn’t recognize your device as QUSB_BULK then download Zadig and replace the drivers with WinUSB ones.
  • If axon7tool.exe doesn’t recognize your device even after connecting the device as QUSB_BULK then try killing adb.exe via task manager before trying again.

Unlock the Bootloader on ZTE Axon 7

Prerequisites

  • Make sure your device is at least 60% charged
  • Download minimal fastboot and adb tools (Unzip the files into ADB folder so that you can easily access it later)
  • Download the aboot.img file and put in the ADB folder
  • Finally, Download the TWRP_Unlock_Bootloader file (Unzip it but only copy the fastboot_unlock.img file to the ADB folder)

Steps to Unlock Bootloader

  1. Navigate to the ADB folder and hold Shift + Right Click» Open command window here.
  2. In the command window, type one command and hit enter. Do this for all of the commands listed. Type,
    adb push aboot.img /sdcard/ 
    adb push fastboot_unlock.img /sdcard/
    adb shell dd if=/dev/block/bootdevice/by-name/fbop of=/sdcard/fbop_lock.img
    adb shell dd if=/dev/block/bootdevice/by-name/aboot of=/sdcard/aboot_lock.img
    adb pull /sdcard/fbop_lock.img
    adb pull /sdcard/aboot_lock.img
    adb shell dd if=/sdcard/fastboot_unlock.img of=/dev/block/bootdevice/by-name/fbop
    adb shell dd if=/sdcard/aboot.img of=/dev/block/bootdevice/by-name/aboot
  3. Then, type,
     adb reboot bootloader 

    and hit enter (The device will boot into bootloader).

  4. Finally, type,
    fastboot oem unlock

    and hit enter.

  5. Follow the instructions on the device in order to confirm unlocking of the bootloader (Use Volume Buttons to navigate and Power Button to select).
  6. Boot into TWRP recovery (To do so hold both Power and Volume Up button until droid logo).
  7. At the end, Navigate to Wipe» Format Data and type in Yes to confirm data formatting.

Note- If you a permission denied issue then try doing these steps while in TWRP recovery.

Root ZTE Axon 7 (A2017G)

Prerequisites

  • Download the SuperSU 2.79.zip file (Transfer the zip file to the device’s Internal Storage).

Steps to Root

  1. Reboot your device into TWRP recovery mode (To do so hold both Power and Volume Up button until droid logo).
  2. Click on Install.TWRP 3.0
  3. Then, navigate to the directory where you placed the SuperSU.zip file.
  4. Click on it and swipe right to flash it.
  5. After completed, reboot your device to the system.

Download Root Checker from the Play Store to verify root access.

Root Checker
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That is it, guys. This is sure a long post and I know some beginners will face issues with this. For them, remember the comments section is always below to ask for help. We will try to reply as quickly as possible.