Google Pixel 6
image via: cnet.com

Previously, we have written a step-by-step guide on how to install a new over-the-air update on the Google Pixel 6 and the Pixel 6 Pro. We have done the whole process while our device was rooted with Magisk.

As our device was rooted with Magisk, we have to manually install the update as we didn’t receive the OTA update from Google.

Now, we felt that this was needed to write another step-by-step guide on how to root Google Pixel 6 and the 6 Pro if you are on the December 2021 security update.

There are some specific steps needed to take in order to keep the vbmeta file set with verity and verification disabled. Sadly, updating to this security update so quickly resulted in losing root access because of a change Google had made to the December 2021 security update for both pixel phones.

Thankfully, the developers behind Magisk were able to quickly get a fix in but they needed some time to test out the changes.

It seems like those changes have been put through the wringer and we can now regain root access to the Google Pixel 6 and the Pixel 6 pro on December 2021 security update.

So, we want to show you how to regain root access on your Pixel devices. If this is the first time that you are rooting the Google Pixel 6 series then it is recommended that you follow our original root tutorial. Because you are going to need to make sure that both verity and verification are disabled with the vbmeta image file. That is required and that does also require a factory data reset if this is the first time you are rooting the phone.

However, the point of my previous tutorial was that you can install this new security update without losing your data and you can also regain root access without losing your data as well. You just need to have the vbmeta image set to disable verity and disable verification ahead of time.

Disable verity and verification on your device then watch our previous guide on how to manually install December 2021 over the air security update. After that, you just need to update your version of Magisk to the latest canary build.

Then patch the boot image file in order to regain root access to the Google Pixel 6 and the Pixel 6 Pro.

We can do that by going into the Magisk manager application. If your update channel is not already set to canary then make sure it is set to the canary. And then you can update the app through the normal method by just tapping on the update button it will download the apk and then install it for you.

Once you have either updated to the latest version of Magisk or uninstalled your version of Magisk and installed a newly downloaded canary build from GitHub, you can then proceed with regaining root access.

We do that by tapping the install button at the top section next to Magisk in the Magisk app.

Then choosing the select and patch a file.

Next up go and locate the boot image file on your device. This is the same boot image file that we have copied from the December 2021 update factory image firmware.

If you have not already done so download that firmware onto your PC or phone so that you can go into that compressed file and extract the boot image file. Or you can read our previous guide on how to manually install December 2021 security update.

We are going to select that boot image file and we are going to patch it with Magisk. Be sure to make note what the output file name in which you can see right when the patching is done. Magisk will save that patched file in the download folder.

In our case, the file name is magiskpatched23016, and then a random string of letters and numbers.

Copy this file from your download folder on your device back to your PC and in the same ADB and fastboot tool folder. This needs to be done so that we can flash the patched file in fastboot mode.

Once the file has been copied from the phone back to the PC, we then need to boot the device into fastboot mode.

Once you are in fastboot mode make sure that you have your USB cable connected and then open up a command prompt in the same ADB and fastboot tool folder where you copied the patched file.

Type out the command “fastboot flash boot and then the name of that patched file” in the command prompt without the inverted commas.

If you want to temporarily boot that patched file on your device then remove the “Flash” from the above command. It will temporarily boot this image file and boot your phone up into Android which should give you root access but since it is only a temporary boot it is only going to be active until you restart the phone.

So, if you want to temporarily boot this Magisk patched file which is great for testing, a lot of people will temporarily boot this just to make sure it works and that it does not result in a boot loop and you can do that.

But if you are more confident and you want to permanently flash the patched file then you can type the full command which is “fastboot flash boot ‘and then the name of that patched file’” in the command prompt without the inverted commas.

Just press enter on the keyboard when you are ready and the command is properly typed out in the command prompt.

The process will start and it should do two things just like before. It should send that file to the boot partition and then it should write that Magisk patched file to the boot partition.

It does not matter if this is boot “A” or boot “B, it should be automatically detected correctly for you and we should also get two okay messages right there.

When you see the two “Okay” messages, it means you have successfully patched that firmware file.

Now head over to your device and make sure that the top option on your device is set to start. You may have it set to something else if you have pressed the volume buttons and that’s okay, we’re just going to press the volume up button until the start option is highlighted.

Press the power button to select that option and now you are just going to boot up into Android like normal.

It is not going to take longer than normal and you will be going to go through the normal boot animation sequence and it will take you right into Android.

Once you boot back into Android, open the Magisk app to make sure that Magisk is properly installed.

That’s the process. This guide is to regain root access on your Google Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro after installing the December 2021 over-the-air security update.

You can also confirm that your device is rooted by installing the root checker app from the Play Store.

Experiencing difficulties with your Device, check out our “How To” page on how to resolve some of these issues.

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