Factory reset protection is a hot new feature, and one that's catching a lot of people out, judging by how many questions we get about how to get around it.

These questions are all asking pretty much the same thing, but the answer depends strongly on what phone is involved (and will change for different firmware versions too). The situation is somewhat analogous to "how do I root my phone?" or "how do I install a custom ROM?" questions, and like those topics, I think there's a risk of these questions getting messy. Unlike "how do I root my device?" we should expect that the answer for the majority of phones will simply be "you just can't", so I'm not sure if the "one question per phone" approach will work here: we'd end up with a lot of unanswered questions. OTOH, it's likely that if someone discovers a way to bypass it for a phone where it was previously thought impossible, they might ask and self-answer a question about that phone, and I think we want to encourage that (rather than closing the question and making them merge the answer by hand).

Matthew Read's answer is pretty close to being a canonical answer for this question, but the question it's on is for one phone only, and of course the answer only deals with a small selection of phones. I'm not sure that trying to edit this question to be more generic and then making the answer community wiki is the right thing to do here; nor does breaking up the existing good answer into answers on separate per-phone questions.

I'm a bit lost about what we should do, and I think that now is the time to act, before we have a spaghetti dish of overlapping questions to clean up. I'd like to hear the community's opinions on what's the best option, or to hear some new and better options.

  • 2
    Could we have a single question with answers per phone? Most devices will be handled by a "you can't" answer, and any devices where it can be bypassed could be answered in a separate answer? I guess it depends on how many device specific answers we expect to see? – bmdixon Jun 1 '16 at 12:25
  • 3
    I actually don't think that genericizing the question is a bad thing, since the answer already tries to cover so many different devices. I also personally see no value in attempting to do "one phone per question" types of things at all, though. Answers have huge character limits, there's no reason why we need to break up all this information other than perhaps worrying that people will take offense to their questions being marked as dupes. Rooting is maybe an exception to this (but there are a ton of generic root methods, so...) – eldarerathis Jun 1 '16 at 14:45

The reason I opted for a single expansive answer is because there are really only two core things involved (most of the time):

  1. Get USB Debugging enabled.

  2. Get the Factory Reset option enabled.

Likewise, these generally involve the similar sub-steps — trick a browser window into opening, trick Settings into opening, maybe create another user account, flag first-time-setup as being completed, etc. Any user capable of doing these things should be able to piece together something that works on their device — and if it doesn't, most possible work-arounds would apply to many devices and thus we want to have one central spot to gather them as they are discovered.

Because of this, providing a per-device answer would be duplicating a lot of information and hindering that sort of centralized list of strategies. IMO, splitting these up would be akin to removing the list of many-device rooting tools found at the end of How do I root my Android device?

I do think it's valid to leave some specific questions open, like this one: Lg G4 email verification bypass cant do anything. It could be improved (as per my comment there), but in general something like "I took the recommended steps X, Y, and Z but the option is still greyed out and trying A and B didn't work" seems like a great candidate for a separate question.

I of course am saying all of the above in good faith, but obviously it must be noted that I am biased because of my answers there. (Side note, it would be awesome if someone wrote another answer with the exact details of how to erase the partition directly.)


Following approach may be considered:

  1. Make a new question (henceforth as OQ). This question would serve as an index with entry for a device and that being hyperlinked to a relevant answer on the same page.
  2. The question may or may not be made a community wiki. Decision of the community shall take priority.
  3. Let users post device specific answers to OQ. If a user knows detail of the concerned FRP bypass mechanism for multiple devices, they may choose to consolidate the information in one answer or in multiple answers.

    They shall link their answer in an entry in OQ. If they fail to do so, one of us users shall do the job. It's akin to how we update rooting index.

  4. The beginning of an answer must have a note or a heading that it concerns with XYZ device(s) and Android W.Y and/or firmware D.E...
  5. There shall be one and only one answer alone (henceforth as OA) that explains that FRP cannot be bypassed. I noticed that Matthew Read already posted one such answer some time ago. It may or may not be considered as OA.

    In the body of OQ, there should be one entry or a line that must be hyperlinked to OA. That entry/line would be for those devices which have not received a device specific answer to OQ.

  6. A new device specific question shall be immediately marked/voted/flagged as a duplicate of OQ, whenever noticed. A user is encouraged to tag such a question with something, such as . The tag shall help moderators to move useful answers from this question to OQ, if required or when time permits.

    This requires effort but one of us must mention in a comment that all wannabe answer posters to this question shall invest their efforts on OQ, should they intend to post their findings.

    Now, until challenged with findings on OQ, the answer to the new device specific question would always be OA.

  7. Useful answers to existing device specific question can be moved to OQ by a moderator or so.

A mock up of OQ:

A set of information to let the readers know what OQ is all about.

List of devices having compromised FRP:

  • [ABC] → [link to A.ABC on same page]
  • [DEF] → [link to A.DEF on same page]
  • [GHI] → [link to A.GHI1 on same page], [link to A.GHI2 on same page] (in case of same or different bypasses discovered for one or multiple firmware versions) ...
  • [XYZ] → [link to A.XYZ on same page]

Solution for devices not mentioned above can be found [here] → [link to OA on same page].

A mock up for a device specific answer:

FRP bypass for Model IKJ running Android X.Y and/or firmware A.Z.

....bypass mechanism in detail...

A mock up of OA: refer to Matthew's answer here to get an idea.

Difference from How do I root my device?

The said approach stems from author's disliking for the following hypothetical answer:

I've searched web a lot and came to this conclusion that FRP in your XYZ device cannot be bypassed....blah blah..

It would be impractical for us to challenge the claim(s) in such kind of answers every single time they are posted. Keeping them intact doesn't appear to be a good move given that until proven otherwise FRP is supposed to be considered impenetrable. Why keep the obvious answers then?

The author is well aware that the said approach deviates from traditional Q&A style.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .