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Kindle Fire Has Been Rooted

Early this morning one Kindle Fire owner announced over on XDA Forums that he’d been fiddling around with his Kindle Fire while trying to gain root access when all of a sudden, he did.

It turns out that the Kindle Fire can be rooted with one of the commonly available tools. it will probably work with others, but there’s no need to check now that we know which one will work.

I think a new record is about to be set for the fastest hacking of a closed tablet.

Now, what he did wasn’t actually hacking the tablet, but it was the first step. He discovered how to get root access, which (if you’re not familiar with Linux terms) is something akin to admin privileges on a Widows PC. This is the first thing that hackers need to before they bypass the manufacturer’s restrictions and start installing and testing apps.

But it’s still a great first step.It means we’re going to see custom firmwares for the Kindle Fire a start showing up within the next week or so, and we could even see a few firmwares (that are safe for the end user to install) released within a month.

Speaking of the Kindle Fire, Amazon put a number of subtle restrictions on it. For example, the KF cannot see the Aldiko or Kobo reading apps in the Amazon Appstore. With other tablets that would mean that the tablet isn’t compatible, but in this case Amazon doesn’t want you to see the competition.

I got the Aldiko app elsewhere and it installed just fine. I tried both the older v1.2 and the new v2.x versions and both work okay. Since Amazon wouldn’t let me see the version available via their app store, I can only conclude that they’re hiding it from me.

In case you’re interested, I downloaded one version from a website and I emailed the other version to myself and then downloaded it from the email. So don’t worry; there are other ways to get apps than via Amazon.

Update: And just to be clear, I have not rooted my KF yet. I installed the apps on a KF running on the exact same firmware that Amazon shipped.


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fjtorres November 16, 2011 um 2:20 pm

Amazon said they expected it to be quickly rooted and that they wouldn’t go out of their way to prevent it.
Considering the bulk of the Fire’s value is in the Amazon-provided content and services, wouldn’t any alternate firmware that renders it just another android tablet be a step back to typical Fire buyers?
Sure, hobbyists will have a field day, but how much added value can they squeeze out of that rather basic hardware? Its not like a hack can get you USB host or an SD card slot. 😉

Aaron Cavanaugh December 16, 2011 um 9:56 pm


Well if you could use USB micro to HDMI out dongle or a USB micro to USB female dongle, so that you could plug things like an external hard drive, thumb drive etc. A 3.1 (the version of Android that supports USB host support) could be of great value on a Kindle Fire.

Thanks. God Bless.


tedster November 16, 2011 um 2:48 pm

A very detailed tutorial to root your KF in here as well:

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