How to root a Nook

Here’s the latest in rooted consumer devices, has rooted the Barnes & Noble Nook eBook reader. The process is extremely easy, as the operating system is stored on a 2GB SD card inside the device. In fact, once you have the case open the hard part is over. From there, the card should be backed up for safe keeping. Now mount the card, enable the Android Debug Bridge and reassemble. The Android SDK can then be used to log into a shell on the Nook wirelessly.

We’re not sure there’s much that can be done past this point yet. It’s up to you to get Doom running!


  1. Peter says:

    Finally, a company that actually decided to make their hardware relatively easy to modify.

  2. Peter says:

    Er, not modify the hardware, I mean made the product easy to customize.

  3. EchelonForce says:

    Nice hack…I prefer sony’s hardware, but android and the fact that I bricked my sony about a month ago makes this very tempting…not to mention it’s $50 cheaper…

  4. giorgio says:

    I wonder if there is any wat to use the free cellular connection to access something else than the b&n website.

  5. The Manatee Militia says:


    I always think of this too, but I think that widespread (mis)use of the data connection on these devices would probably lead to it not being free anymore.

  6. mungewell says:

    Regarding overuse of the Cell-Modem. I would be pretty easy to spot the IMEA which is/are abusing the service and ban it/them…

    What would be interesting to know is whether the Cell-Modem is SIM locked to a particular provider, and if you can take another SIMM with data service and use that.

    The hardware (after all) looks quite nice and has excellent battery life.

  7. MS3FGX says:

    That is rather nice of them to put the OS on a removable SD card, shame more devices aren’t designed so simply.

    Of course, I wonder if we won’t see that SD slot turn into a blob of epoxy in later hardware revisions…

  8. Paul says:

    I wish other devices did this, by far the most open way to store an OS.

    make a PSP or an NDS with the OS on a micro SD card and It would be awesome!

  9. Life2Death says:

    I too agree that we have to do this with feather soft steps or else we’ll never get mfgs to treat us with the same trust again.

  10. Dustin says:

    The NDS’s firmware is rather simple to flash and people have been flashing their DS’s since the Phat days. Just as long as you keep it plugged in haha, otherwise it might brick

  11. Gilliam says:

    @MS3FGX:an SD card already is kinda a blob of epoxy, but with a golden fingers edge.

    i bought a usb flash drive from Fry’s a few months ago, a 4GB for about $12, and its also an epoxy block, or should i say slab, with memory chip AND usb controller in the same epoxy “slab”.

  12. Doug says:

    @ Dustin

    I’ve owned an r4ds since it came out a couple years ago for the phat DS.

    I just want to see more open stuff. For example, the DSi has a useless SD slot because its not open.

  13. spiny norman says:

    Anyone else remember PDAs?

  14. James says:

    LOL @ norman — the thing is most PDAs died when we realized “hey, this thing would be even better with a SIM card” and they turned into smartphones. The convergence might turn around, though, now that people are realizing that “I’d like to have a PDA that does Internet and phone calls, and fits in my pocket” is totally incompatible with “I’d like to have a PDA that can display as much text as a page in a paperback”. Maybe we’ll start converging again when they invent an e-ink screen that can be folded in half…

  15. Jetta says:

    Hey, I think this is great! Nook can only hope to compete against others if their platform continues to grow with features that work. Only a dedicated community can put out better browser applications, phone books, email, calendars, and so much more that WORK, don’t cost $M to create, etc.

    Good for Nook for going this way! IMHO, it’s a great business decision if they stay behind it.

    – J

  16. Maciej says:

    awesome though new nook with 1.4.1
    and serial starting with 1003 cant be rooted without bricking atm… hopefully that will change.

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