Do you want to root your Galaxy S9/S9 Plus flagship? Well, you just landed in the right place for the job. The tutorial below will help you install TWRP recovery and root Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus running Android Pie (One UI) and Oreo easily. TWRP recovery now officially supports the Exynos variant of the said device. Which means you can easily use it to root Galaxy S9/S9+.
Samsung is counted among one of the top manufacturers and is well known for its Galaxy flagship phones. This year, the company did another exceptional job with the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus by adapting the most current trends in the smartphone market. The phones were launched in March 2018 and certainly turned out to be the best Galaxy flagships to date. Following a very similar design to the predecessor, the hardware and software are where the said phones excel.
Updated on 21 June 2019: This guide has been updated with the latest TWRP recovery, RMM Bypass zip, ElementalX kernel, and Magisk zip to help you root your Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+ running Android Pie-based One UI.
Despite all the latest features, users might often want to further customize the software beyond what the manufacturer has to offer. In this case, one would have to root Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+.
Extensive Guide to Root Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus
Rooting the Galaxy S9/S9 Plus is a three-step process. First, you will need to install TWRP recovery on Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus. This would enable you to flash custom binaries, commonly known as flashable ZIPs. The next step is to disable encryption and prevent Prenormal KG/RMM State by flashing the no-verity zip and RMM State Bypass zip files. Finally, when all is done, you can easily install Magisk using TWRP to root Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus.
While the process might not be as simple as that on devices like Google Pixel, it is still fairly easy. Even if you’re new to the scene, you will easily be able to perform the whole procedure. Just make sure that you follow each and every step as mentioned.
Currently, only the Exynos variant of the Galaxy S9/S9 Plus is supported. Although, TWRP recovery for Snapdragon Galaxy S9 and S9+ is available unofficially, there are still no confirmations if it works correctly or not. We will update this post if there are any updates. Please make sure to check the “Supported Variants and Models” section below before proceeding to the instructions.
Rooting the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ will trip the KNOX counter. Flashing custom binaries including TWRP, root, or any other sorts of flashable ZIP will void the phone’s official warranty. So make sure that you’re comfortable with the procedure and its consequences beforehand.
Supported Variants and Models
- Samsung Galaxy S9
- Compatible: Exynos variants (codename: starlte) with model number SM-G960F/FD/N/X are supported.
- Not Compatible: Snapdragon variants (codename: starqlte) with model number SM-G960U/U1/W/0/2/8/SC are not supported.
- Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus
- Compatible: Exynos variants (codename: star2lte) with model number SM-G965F/FD/N/X are supported.
- Not Compatible: Snapdragon variants (codename: star2qlte) with model number SM-G965U/U1/W/0/2/8/SC are not supported.
- Take a complete backup of all your data on the device. Everything including apps, contacts, messages, logs, internal storage, etc will be wiped during the process. You can also follow our guide on how to backup Android devices for this purpose.
- Charge the Galaxy S9/S9+ to at least 60% battery level. This will help avoid any sudden shutdowns during the rooting process.
- Download and install Samsung USB drivers on the PC.
- Download Odin v1.13.1 from the ‘Downloads’ section below and extract the file to an easily accessible location on the PC.
Make sure to fulfill all the requirements stated above before you proceed to follow the instructions to root Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus.
- Samsung Odin tool: Odin3_v3.13.1.zip
- TWRP Recovery for Galaxy S9 (starlte): twrp-3.3.1-0-starlte.img.tar (Check the latest build here)
- TWRP Recovery for Galaxy S9 Plus (star2lte): twrp-3.3.1-0-star2lte.img.tar (Check the latest build here)
- No-verity Disabler ZIP: no-verity-opt-encrypt-samsung-1.0.zip
- RMM State Bypass: RMM__Bypass_v3_corsicanu.zip (Thanks BlackMesa123 & corsicanu!)
- ElementalX kernel for Galaxy S9/S9 Plus (Download the kernel zip corresponding to the software build number installed on your phone):
- SuperSU 2.82 SR5: SR5-SuperSU-v2.82-SR5-20171001224502.zip
- Magisk 20.1 Stable: Magisk-v20.1.zip (More info and changelog)
Enable Developer Options and Enable OEM Unlock in Settings
Before heading over to the actual process, you must first enable Developer Options and OEM Unlock in the Settings. go to Settings -> About Phone -> Software Information and tap 7 times on the ‘Build number’. You shall then see a toast notification – “Developer mode has been enabled”. After this, go to the Settings and remove any/all Samsung and Google accounts from the device.
Once done, go back to the Settings main screen and tap on ‘Developer options’. Scroll down until you find the ‘OEM Unlock’ toggle and turn it ON. If the option is not yet visible on your device, it means that your phone has entered a 7-day buffer period. After this time, the ‘OEM Unlock’ option shall be available. If it is still not available, it means that your phone cannot be rooted.
Now that the setting is enabled, you can easily flash custom binaries on your Samsung Galaxy phone using Odin. The first step in order to root Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus is to install TWRP recovery. The section below will take you through the complete process in detail.
Recommended: How to Boot Samsung Galaxy S9 Safe Mode (Guide)
Install TWRP Recovery on Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus
- Download TWRP recovery for Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus.
- Go to the extracted Odin folder and double-click on “Odin3 v3.13.1.exe”.
- Power off the phone completely.
- Hold the Volume Down, Bixby, and Power button simultaneously.
- On the warning screen, press the Volume Up button to enter Download Mode on Galaxy S9/S9 Plus.
- As the Odin window loads, you shall see “Added!!” in the message box. The ID:COM port should also light up.
- In case it doesn’t, then try using a different USB port or re-install the USB drivers.
- In the ‘Options’ tab, make sure ‘Auto Reboot’ and ‘Re-Partition’ boxes are not selected.
- Next, click on the ‘AP’ button under the ‘Files’ section.
- Select the TWRP recovery .tar file for your device.
- Finally, click the ‘Start’ button to install TWRP recovery on Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus.
After the flashing process is complete, the phone shall stay in Download Mode.
Now it is very important to boot into TWRP mode directly, if by any chance your phone boots into the OS, the Prenormal RMM State will be set. This will force you to wait for another 7 Day period before you can actually flash anything. Once done, you can easily root Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus.
Boot Galaxy S9/S9 Plus into TWRP Recovery
- Hold the Volume Down, Bixby, and Power button simultaneously until the phone powers off.
- Important: As soon as the screen shuts down, release the Volume Down key and hold the Volume Up button while still holding the Bixby and Power buttons.
- Your Galaxy S9/S9+ should boot into TWRP recovery.
- On the ‘Unmodified System Partition’ screen, slide the ‘Swipe to Allow Modifications’ button.
Now that you have successfully booted into TWRP, you can follow the next section to disable encryption on Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus.
Disable Encryption and Prevent Prenormal KG/RMM State
- Go to ‘Wipe’ and tap on ‘Format Data’.
- Enter ‘Yes’ in the provided field to completely format the device.
- Once finished, go back to the main TWRP screen.
- Tap on “Mount” and select “Enable MTP”.
- Connect the phone to the PC using the USB cable.
- Download DM-Verity disabler and KG/RMM State Bypass zip files from the ‘Downloads’ section above.
- Transfer the files to the phone’s internal storage.
- Disconnect the device.
- Tap on the ‘Install’ button.
- Navigate to the internal storage and select the file.
- Swipe the button to flash the ZIP and disable encryption on Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+.
- Finally, install RMM State Bypass zip to prevent your phone from being locked again (Prenormal KG/RMM State).
The final step is to root the phone. However, flashing the root solution would not suffice. That is because Samsung has implemented several security measures. To overcome this, you can simply flash a custom kernel (We recommend ElementalX) and then root Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus using Magisk.
Root Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus
- Download ElementalX kernel for Galaxy S9/S9 Plus.
- Also, download Magisk 20.1 ZIP file.
- Connect the phone to the PC using the USB cable.
- In TWRP, go to ‘Mount’ and tap on ‘Enable MTP’.
- Copy the ElementalX kernel and SuperSU/Magisk ZIP files to the phone’s internal storage.
- Go to the TWRP main screen.
- Press the ‘Install’ button.
- Navigate to the internal storage and select the ‘ElementalX-S9-2.11.zip’ file.
- Next, tap on ‘Add more ZIPs’ and select the ‘Magisk-v19.4.zip’ file.
- Finally, swipe the button on the screen to root Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus and Galaxy S9 running Android Pie or Oreo.
When the flashing process finished, tap on the ‘Reboot System’ button to boot back into the OS. Now that the phone is rooted, you can go ahead and start using root-enabled applications. If you have Magisk, you can also use MagiskHide to hide root from certain apps like Pokemon Go. Magisk also gives you the ability to install modules for injecting additional features into the OS. Perhaps, things you can on a rooted phone are much more than what we can list here.
So, this was our tutorial on how to install TWRP, disable encryption, prevent Prenormal KG/RMM State and root Samsung Galaxy S9/S9 Plus. If you have any questions, please leave them down in the comments.