How to Unlock Bootloader on Moto Z/ Moto Z Force

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Even after its takeover by Lenovo, Moto still continues to prove itself as one of the top smartphone manufacturers in today’s market. Its newest additions are just another example to its already successful lineup of both affordable and premium devices, the Moto Z, and Moto Z Force. Both boasting top of the line specs and offer equally top of the line performance to compliment it.

Also included is the added bonus of modular add-ons. The main selling point for many Moto devices is the near stock vanilla Android experience. This itself makes it easier to root and mod than most OEM devices, eg. Samsung.

However, the first step before you can start rooting is to unlock the bootloader, to lift the manufacturer lock on the device, beware however this does void the warranty so proceed with caution. With that being said below is the guide that’ll help you unlock the bootloader of your Moto Z or Moto Z Force.

Preparations

First of all, you will need to ensure a few things before we start:

  • Confirm you are using Moto Z or Moto Z Force

Note: Carrier models (DROID variants) won’t work with this method. 

  • Ensure that you have the necessary Moto installed (Download here).
  • Check if you have at least 80-85% of battery charge. We don’t want the phone dying in the middle of the process.
  • If you have done this process before on other devices then you must be familiar with ADB and fastboot. Ensure that you have it installed.

For those who aren’t familiar with ADB and fastboot, Please refer to our detailed guide on How to Setup ADB and Fastboot on Windows within Seconds

  • Enable USB-Debugging from Developer Options in the Settings menu.
    • If you cannot find Developer Options, then you’ll have to first enable it by going to Settings -> About Phone -> Build Number and tap it 7 times until you see a small notification that you have enabled it.
    • Then return to the Settings menu, you should find Developer Options there. Open it and enable USB Debugging.
  • Make sure that you have backed up all your personal data and apps as all data might be erased!
    • For Contacts, Calendar and People details use Google Accounts Sync to backup
    • For Apps and App Data check out our detailed post here.

Disclaimer: The following procedure is highly risky and there are chances that you may brick your phone if not performed correctly, DroidViews cannot be held responsible if that happens. So the user should tread cautiously and at their own risk.

Unlock Bootloader on Moto Z/Moto Z Force

Step 1 – Plug in the USB cable to phone and computer. Tap on USB icon in notifications panel and Select MTP (file transfer) mode.

Step 2 – Open command prompt and type the following command

adb devices

You should be getting a message saying ‘List of devices attached’ along with your device name. This will confirm that ADB has recognized your device.

Step 3 – Next enter this command in Command prompt

adb reboot bootloader

This will reboot your Moto into fastboot/bootloader mode

Step 4 – Type the following command to extract the unlock code which you have to use to unlock your bootloader

fastboot oem get_unlock_data

Step 5 –  Copy the output that appears by Right click > Mark option on the command prompt itself and dragging to select the entire unlock code. After selecting the code just press Enter to copy it to your clipboard.

Step 6 – Next, go to Motorola’s page for unlocking bootloader and paste the code you copied in the above step. Click on the ‘Can my device be unlocked?’ button and wait for the confirmation.

Step 7 – Agree to the terms and conditions and then click the button shown to Request your unlock key. Click ‘OK’ on the pop-up that shows up. Motorola will then send the unlock key to your email ID.

Step 8 – Now that you have your unlock key, you can now unlock your bootloader with it. Just run the following command in Command Prompt

fastboot oem unlock 'paste-your-unlock-code'

Step 9 – Keep an eye on the Moto Z’s screen. It’ll eventually display ‘Unlock’, and then Unlocked! The device will reboot automatically.

And that’s it you have successfully unlocked the bootloader of the Moto Z/Moto Z Force. If you have any issues do let us know by your comments below.

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