Let’s go over a few prerequisites before venturing down the path of rooting your NOOKcolor:
- First and foremost, you obviously need to have a registered NOOKcolor.
- Second, you need a 2GB or higher microSD card (I recommend using a 4 or 8GB card). Any existing data on this card will be completely erased, so make sure you have it backed up.
- Third, you need a computer that can read that microSD card.
- Fourth, you will need a working Wi-Fi connection for you NOOKcolor.
- Finally, you need to have a Google account. You do not need to use it ever again, though you do need it for this process.
After you decide to experience the new functionality of your NOOKcolor by rooting it, the steps required are quite easy:
- Download the necessary files.
- Create a disk image on a microSD card.
- Install the microSD card disk image on your NOOKcolor.
- Enter some information into a couple of applications.
- Install Android Market.
- Install any additional applications you want on your NOOKcolor.
Let’s look at these steps in detail.
Download the Necessary Files
Let’s go ahead and download the rooting files. I created a single zip file for you. This zip file contains several files:
- generic-sdcard-v1.1.img.zip. Unzip the file and place the generic-sdcard-v1.1.img file somewhere that’s easily accessible.
- update-cm-7.0.2-encore-signed.zip. Do not unzip this file; rather, place it somewhere easily accessible.
- gapps-gb-20110307-signed.zip. Do not unzip this file; rather, place it somewhere easily accessible.
- win32diskimager-RELEASE-0.1-r15-win32. Unzip that file. Place the contents someplace easily accessible.
- readme.txt. This file provides the location to retrieve updated versions for the above files, if necessary.
Create a Disk Image
In this step, you will create a bootable disk on the microSD card. To do this, you will download some files, including a small piece of software (WinImager) that takes a file and creates the bootable disk.
For Linux and Mac instructions for creating a disk image, see nookdevs.com/NookColor_Rooting.
If you are on a PC:
- Plug in a microSD card to your PC.
- Find the win32DiskImage.exe file you downloaded in the previous section. Double-click the file, which starts the program.
- Browse to the generic-sdcard-v1.1.img file and select it.
- For Device, choose the drive letter of the microSD card.
- Click Write. The disk image will be created. When it finishes, click Exit.
- Find the update-cm-7.0.2-encore-signed.zip file and copy it to the microSD card. The microSD card is now ready to install in your NOOKcolor.
Rooting Your NOOKcolor
Now we are going to actually do the rooting process, which is strikingly easy. Follow these steps:
- Unplug your NOOKcolor from computer and power it off.
- Insert the microSD card you created a disk image on in the previous section into your NOOKcolor.
- Power on your NOOKcolor.
- You will see a penguin and then some green text. Let it do its thing.
- After about a couple of minutes, you will see a notice that “It is safe to power off now.” Then the NOOKcolor powers off.
- You now have a rooted NOOKcolor. Turn on your NOOKcolor to finish this part of the rooting process. (You may need to hold the power button longer than usual to get your NOOKcolor to turn off.)
- Once the NOOKcolor is on, tap the Settings button in the far bottom left and then tap Settings. You will see four buttons: Settings, Back (a left-pointing arrow), Search (magnifying glass), and Quick Options (a circle with an upward-pointing arrow).
- Tap Wireles & Networks.
- Tap Wi-Fi Settings.
- Tap your wi-fi network. (Enter a password if necessary.)
- Use the Back button to get to the Settings. Tap Display.
- Tap Screen Timeout and select a time (the default is 1 minute).
- Turn off your NOOKcolor to complete this part of the rooting process.
Finishing Rooting Your NOOKcolor
You have only a few more steps to complete before you can begin to download Android Market apps and expand your NOOKcolor into a tablet:
- If your NOOKcolor is on, turn it off.
- Remove the microSD card.
- Plug the microSD card into your computer.
- Copy the gapps-gb-20110307-signed.zip to the microSD card.
- You will see the following files on the microSD card:
That’s it! You have successfully rooted your NOOKcolor!
Installing Applications on Your Rooted NOOKcolor
Now that you have your NOOKcolor rooted, you want to install applications, right? Well, it is super-easy:
- Tap the Apps button (it’s in between the Phone and Internet buttons).
- Tap the Market button. The Market page opens.
- Tap the Search button. Type NOOK and tap Go.
- Tap the NOOK for Android by B&N app line. Tap Free and then tap OK. You will be informed that it is downloading. Tap the Back button and then My Apps to watch the progress.
- When it is finished downloading and installed, press the Home button.
- Tap the Apps button.
- Tap the NOOK button.
- Enter your B&N account information. Your app is synched up with your B&N account (if you have a large library, the synching can take some time). You can now read your NOOKbooks on the rooted portion of your NOOKcolor.
Simple, right? And that’s how installing other apps work. Check out what the Android Market has out there!