Howto: Root the Motorola Droid X

I was recently asked if my post on rooting the HTC Droid Incredible would work for the Motorola Droid X. Unfortunately, it doesn’t. The two android phones are from two completely different manufacturers and so the steps taken to root are completely different.

I don’t own a Motorola Droid X myself, so I share this information with the caveat that I have no personal experience with this specific model Android phone.

That said, the steps are pretty straight forward and fairly simple – and this guide includes instruction on how to revert back to stock in case anything goes wrong.

The usual disclaimer before we begin rooting

If you decide to root your android phone I take no responsibility for anything going wrong. By “rooting” your android phone you are voiding your warranty. It is possible to mess this up and “brick” your android phone. (A bricked android phone is one that is completely dead.) I offer this tutorial as an aid for people who know what they’re doing and have some level of experience with advanced technology.


With the release of 2.2.1 for the Droid X, many of the existing one-click root methods have become buggy. Currently, z4root is one that still works well.

  1. Download App Installer from the Market
  2. Download z4root from XDA Forums
  3. Use App Installer to install z4root
  4. Launch z4root and press the big “Root” button. If z4root doesn’t load within 30 seconds or so, pull the battery and try again. It usually works on the second try, if not the first.
  5. You’re rooted!

So, like I said, not hard.


Before doing anything else, make a backup. This way, if anything goes wrong, you can get back to a point where things were working.

  1. Download Bootstrap from Koush
  2. Install said App
  3. Launch Bootstrap
  4. Select Bootstrap Recovery, then select ok when it completes
  5. Select Reboot Recovery to reboot the Droid X into the recovery menu
  6. Once in the new recovery menu, use the volume keys to move up and down and the camera key to select an item
  7. Highlight Backup/Restore and select it
  8. Highlight backup and select it – the Droid X will now be backed up to the SD card. This could take a while depending on how many apps are on your Droid X
  9. Once done, return to the main menu, and highlight and select Reboot to reboot the Droid X.

You’ll also probably want to purchase Titanium Backup from the market. Titanium allows you to backup you apps, so that after you wipe your Droid X and install a new ROM you can easily restore all those games you downloaded (and your high scores).


Check out the list of ROMs on It has a pretty good selection of ROMs and clearly states which software versions any given ROM will work with.It’s highly recommended that you only use deodexed ROMs.

  1. Download the ROM you wish to try to your SD card
  2. Use Bootstrap to bootstrap the recovery and then boot into recovery
  3. Select Wipe Data, then Yes (glad you made that backup, eh?)
  4. Select Wipe Cache, then Yes
  5. Go back to the main menu and select Install zip from SD card
  6. Select the ROM zip file you downloaded, then select yes.
  7. Once the ROM is flashed you can reboot.

Once you’re back in the Droid X you can use Titanium Backup to restore your apps. Be sure to only restore user apps and not system apps. If you restore system apps you will write over ROM files, which will most likely break the ROM (which means no booting for you!).

Return to Stock

  1. Download the Droid X 2.3.32 SBF
  2. Download RSDLite v4.8 and install it
  3. Make sure your Droid X is fully-ish charged
  4. Run RSDlite and connect your Droid X to the computer via USB
  5. Select the SBF file you downloaded in RSDlite and click start. The software will reinstall 2.2.1 to the Droid X.

Once done, reboot the Droid X, activate it or whatever, re-root it, run Bootstrap again, and restore your backup. Everything is back, it’s magic!

Removing Bloat

Unfortunately, I don’t have a list of bloat like I do for the HTC Droid Incredible. However, most custom ROMs do a really good job slimming down the Droid X. Check out different ROMs and find the one that works well for you.


Since I don’t have a Droid X myself, I doubt I’ll be much help answering your questions. I’d recommend checking out for your tech support needs. They have a strong community of very helpful people.

Enjoy your rooted Motorola Droid X!