How To: Update Your OnePlus 6 or 6T Without Losing Root — No Computer Needed

Update Your OnePlus 6 or 6T Without Losing Root — No Computer Needed

One of the biggest downsides to rooting is that it can be a pain to update every month with each new security patch. With other phones, you might have had to fully unroot the device, maybe flash a stock recovery, or potentially even flash all the factory images to get a new update. Thankfully, OnePlus has made this process super simple for us modders.

It used to be a little complicated during the older days of the rooting scene, but you can now easily update new devices, like your OnePlus 6 or 6T, while still maintaining root access. It's almost as simple as natively downloading and installing an OTA update on a stock device, but not entirely. I'll show you the few quick steps you need to take to update your OnePlus 6T without dealing with all the hoop jumping.


Step 1: Download the OTA Update

To begin updating your OnePlus 6 or 6T, you must first download the newest update file from the official OnePlus website onto your phone's internal storage. The file is rather large, so it might take up to ten minutes, depending on your network connection.

Step 2: Make Sure You Have TWRP

It's critical that you have the TWRP installer on your phone's internal storage for safekeeping. The reason for this is so you can permanently flash TWRP after applying the OTA update; otherwise, it will flash the stock recovery back to your system.

So head to one of the links below from your phone, then look for the latest version of TWRP. The links may be out of order, so pay attention to the date column on the right and select the link next to the newest date. From there, tap the first "Download..." link on the following page.

Step 3: Make Sure You Have Magisk

Just like TWRP, you should have the latest Magisk installer ZIP on your phone's internal storage so you can flash it after the update is applied. If you skip the Magisk flash before your next boot, you may get stuck in an endless bootloop after installing the OTA update. Magisk needs to be flashed to patch a few things up after the update so you can boot back into Android properly.

To download the latest version, head to the link below. Tap "Assets" to expand a menu, then select the first link (the APK link) from the options that appear.

Step 4: Reboot to TWRP

Once you have the latest OTA update for the OnePlus 6T, and you have both Magisk and TWRP installers on your internal storage, you'll need to reboot your phone into the TWRP recovery environment. If you have not done so already, enable Advanced reboot, then you can long-press the power button to select the "Recovery" option. Once you do that, your phone should immediately restart and begin booting to the TWRP main menu.

Step 5: Install the OTA Update

Now that you're on the main menu of TWRP, tap "Install," then locate the folder where you downloaded the three files from the previous steps. Tap the OTA update file first to add it to the install queue, then you want to initiate the "Swipe to confirm Flash" slider to begin installing the OTA update first.

The update contains the entire operating system and all core files for the Oxygen OS, so you can expect the install time to be a few minutes at the very least. It might seem frozen at times on the first step, but you have to be patient with it before it moves on to the second step.

Step 6: Install TWRP & Reboot to Recovery

Once the OTA file finishes installing, hit the back arrow to go back to the previous screen, then tap the installer file for TWRP and install this in the same manner as before. Once that one finishes up, tap the home button to head to the main screen, then choose "Reboot" and "Recovery."

Step 7: Install Magisk & Reboot System

With the OTA update and TWRP installed, all that's left is to reinstall Magisk. After rebooting to recovery and entering your PIN when prompted, you should be taken back to TWRP's main menu. So tap the "Install" button, then select the Magisk ZIP from your Download folder and swipe the slider to install it. When you're done, go ahead and press "Reboot System."

From here, you should be good to go! Once it finishes the boot process, you should now be on the latest Oxygen OS update for your OnePlus 6T with full root access and TWRP.

As a fun side note, the same install process works for the OnePlus Beta Builds as well. So you can test out all latest updates from the Beta versions of Oxygen OS while maintaining root access. Once you're done with testing those updates, you can flash the stable version right back over it using this same guide. Enjoy!

Cover image and screenshots by Stephen Perkins/Gadget Hacks

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Does this method wipe your data?

It's always a good idea to create a backup if it's your main device just as a precaution, but the method in this guide doesn't involve wiping data. So this makes it easy to update without worrying about any data loss. It works the same way as over the air system updates, just manually.

hi. thanks for this tutorial. last time I did the ota update with a rod op6t it endet with the warning screen on boot saying "your device is corrupted and cannot be trusted" in red letters bsd I had to press power button twice to boot.

before ota update it was a warning in orange letters and booting started automatically after a few seconds.

to get rid of the red warning I had to do a remote session with oneplus and to wipe the phone completely.

does your method avoid, getting the red warning?

and BTW... its there a way to get rid of the boot earning completely?

Using this method works great, I've done it a million times with each monthly update and beta builds on the 6T. If you get the red warning that means you need to do a complete data wipe or flash the factory image because something went wrong and some data was probably corrupted. It can sometimes happen when flashing files, so as usual, always keep a backup of your data handy.

The yellow warning that mentions the bootloader being unlocked is the only thing you should see if things are running perfectly when you reboot your phone. It's normal to see the message every time you reboot if your bootloader is unlocked, and there's no way to remove it. However, the red one is not good news. If anything, you should check out how you can recover it yourself if you wanted to learn more. The recovery tool is super helpful and will fix any number of issues on the 6T, like the corrupted red warning you had.

*my internal storage is not showing up in twrp what am i doing wrong?
im using twrp-3.2.3-xblusparkv9.91op6

Sounds like your data isn't being decrypted by TWRP. Most likely you're on the newest version of OxygenOS and it's not working correctly with the older TWRP you're using. Try the official 3.3.1-0 from the TWRP website for the 6T, I'll update the link in the guide. I'll also link them below as well so you can download the two files needed.

Since your data isn't mounting, just grab the TWRP image file above and flash it through Fastboot from your computer to temporarily boot then flash the installer zip file from there onto your phone using TWRP. Should be good from there! Let me know if you need any help. You can also just flash the .zip file if you already have TWRP installed right now.

Thanks! (im not on a rom i'm still on stock but rooted) But can't i just flash the zip in the current twrp im on? or use a app like Flashify to flash the img?

im not sure how you mean flash img through Fastboot from computer (but im sure ive done it before , refresh my memory please),(i think you talking about Minimal ADB and Fastboot on your computer right? kinda the same thing i did to root my 6t to root it) is there a video on how to do that?

You can always flash the .zip installer of TWRP to update it in the future, which would be the easiest way once you already have TWRP installed. I wouldn't use Flashify since it hasn't been updated to work with newer devices with the A/B partition, such as the OnePlus 6T. Fastboot are the commands you mostly use when unlocking the bootloader/installing TWRP from a computer. The minimal ADB thing is not required anymore with the finicky drivers of the past, just Google's SDK Platform-Tools, but you got the idea down yep.

That video linked is pretty good, but you can follow my guides below if you wanted to get a refresher on how things work going forward if you plan on rooting and modding more often. Hope you get it all squared away! The 6T is an awesome device.

Thank you very much for your information.

At the moment I'm thinking about testing out the AndroidQ DP4 of OxigenOS. You write, that it is possible to use your method also to install Beta without loosing root. But I'm not sure if this is also true if we are talking about Upgrade to the next Android-Version. And in this context...Will the phone get swiped if I install the Preview or does it work like with regular updates?

If you're coming from a stable build to the Android Q Previews, you'll be wiping your data for sure without question. Pretty much any significant system update would require a data wipe when dealing with these kinds of things. It's just to ensure everything goes smooth since things can change quite dramatically on a system level between these updates.

Also, to be clear, there are actually two different beta types that OnePlus is offering right now. One is for testing new features on the current version of Android, and the other one is for the latest version of Android 10 "Q." The regular betas can be installed without a data wipe, but the Android 10 "Q" previews will wipe your data. I hope this helps! Let me know if you need anything else.

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