Unrooting (returning to stock) the Moto X 2013

Some Background

I did my first proper unroot of my Moto X 2013 recently, and I learned something interesting in the process. In the past, when I've rooted and unrooted my Moto X 2013, I'd request/download the factory image straight from the Motorola website and restore that back.

unsuccessful
Recently, though, I tried to take an OTA (over-the-air) update from Motorola, and it would download the update, try to install the update, and then error out. I'd then get a message about how the update was unsuccessful. I tried reflashing the recovery and the system. Reflashing everything, clearing the cache, clearing the user data. The OTA update (from Motorola, mind you) did not like the factory image from Motorola's website.

The only way I could get it to work (big shoutout to mastarifla from the XDA forums for the tip) was downloading a factory image from a third-party website. Then the OTA update (from Motorola) liked it and installed the update successfully. Go figure.

Some of you all may be skeptical about downloading "factory images" frmo third-party websites, and that's fine, but this was the only one that I could get an official OTA from Motorola to install on properly. Your mileage may vary.

Prerequisites and Files to Download

Before you begin, make sure you do the following:

  1. Back up any important data—either to the Cloud or your computer's hard drive or both. This includes but isn't limited to photos, music, apps, bookmarks.
  2. Download the appropriate moto-fastboot files for your operating system from the first post in this thread. For some reason, the regular fastboot can't do some of the larger files, so a special moto-fastboot has to be used.
  3. Download the appropriate factory build files for your model of Moto X.

Note for Windows users

I don't use Windows, but I've heard that you can use RSD Lite to restore the phone instead of running the commands below. Unfortunately, I can't walk you through those steps. You can find details here.

Actual Steps

I'm basing these off of what I did on Mac OS X. There's a terminal in Windows and one in Linux, too, so similar principles will apply, but the exact steps may be slightly different.

  1. Once the factory build is downloaded, double-click it to unzip it.
  2. Move the unzipped moto-fastboot file into the unzipped folder. For Macs, that would be moto-fastboot-x64.
  3. Open up the /Applications/Utilities/Terminal.app and type in
    cd
    with a space at the end
  4. Drag the factory build unzipped folder to the terminal, and then hit Enter. Your terminal should now be focused on that directory.
  5. With your phone unplugged, hold down the power button until it prompts you to power off. Then power it off when prompted.
  6. While holding the volume-down key, tap the power button and wait for it to boot up. It should boot into something called "fastboot mode" with a black screen and some colored text.
  7. Keeping the phone in fastboot mode, connect it to your computer via USB.
  8. Run the following commands (note: it may be better to copy and paste them one by one than to do them all at once in a script or to retype them manually).
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 erase cache
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 erase userdata
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 flash partition gpt.bin
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 flash motoboot motoboot.img
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 flash logo logo.bin
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 flash motoboot motoboot.img
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 flash logo logo.bin
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 flash boot boot.img
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 flash recovery recovery.img
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 flash system system.img
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 flash modem NON-HLOS.bin
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 erase modemst1
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 erase modemst2
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 flash fsg fsg.mbn
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 erase customize
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 erase clogo
    ./moto-fastboot-osx64 oem fb_mode_clear

It's possible that erasing userdata may not be necessary. More details in XT1053 222.27.5 Stagefright OTA Update Guide.

successful
After that, when you reboot your Moto X, it should be back to factory settings and able to take OTA updates.

3 thoughts on “Unrooting (returning to stock) the Moto X 2013”

  1. Hi my Déar.
    I have moto x xt1053 developer édition llolipop 5.1 with unlock bootloader.
    I want to downgrade to 4.2.2 with factory image.it is possible?

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