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How to install Android 5.0 Lollipop on a Nexus 5

Android lollipop nexus 1
© nextpit

The time is now! If you've been waiting for Android 5.0 Lollipop to launch, it is now available as an over the air update. It can take a while for OTA updates to hit phones and tablets, and if you want to get the latest version of Android on your Nexus 5 right now, here's how you can grab yourself a copy of the factory image and install Lollipop for yourself.

Android lollipop nexus 1
Want Android 5.0 Lollipop on your Nexus 5 right now? Manually upgrade! / © ANDROIDPIT

Warning: Before you start this process you should be aware that install a factory image will wipe out all of the data on your Nexus 5. As such, make sure that you have backed up everything you do not want to lose so you can restore it when the installation completes.


You need a few things to start with:

Then extract the downloaded files on your computer. 

Unlock bootloader

If you have already unlocked the bootloader of your Nexus 5 then you can skip this step, but if not, here's how to do it:

  • Turn off your Nexus 5.
  • Press and hold Volume Down and Power to enter the Fastboot menu.
  • Connect the Nexus 5 to your computer via USB cable.
  • Go into the adb-tools folder and hold the Shift key on your keyboard then click the right mouse button on any free area of white space in the Windows Explorer window. Select ''Open Command Window Here'' with your left mouse button.
  • Once the command window is open, enter the following command to unlock the bootloader:

fastboot oem unlock

  • Press the Volume Up button on the Nexus 5 to accept the command and press the Power button to confirm. The bootloader will now be unlocked, and all data will be lost.

Install Factory Image

  • Get your Nexus 5 into Fastboot by turning it off and pressing Volume Down and Power until Fastboot appears.
nexus 5 fastboot
Flick your Nexus 5 into Fastboot to install Android 5.0 Lollipop. © ANDROIDPIT
  • Connect the Nexus 5 to your computer with a USB cable. 
  • On your computer, navigate to the unpacked directory that contains the factory image for your device. 
  • Double click the flash-all.bat file and wait until the installation is finished. Your Nexus will reboot itself after completion.


If your Nexus 5 gets stuck in a bootloop at the Google logo on startup, do the following:

  • Disconnect your Nexus from your computer and turn it off.
  • Press and hold the Volume Down and Power button to enter Fastboot.
nexus 5 recovery fastboot w
If you get into trouble, Recovery Mode is on hand to help. © ANDROIDPIT
  • Use the volume buttons to highlight Recovery Mode and press Power to confirm
  • If you have a custom recovery like CWM you'll enter it immediately. If you see the Android laying on its back just press the Power button and Volume Up button briefly to enter stock Recovery.
  • In the recovery menu, use the volume buttons to highlight wipe cache partition and press Power to confirm.
  • Scroll down to wipe data/factory reset and press Power to confirm. Reconfirm your seelction and let your Nexus reset.
  • If your Nexus doesn't reboot automatically you can select reboot sytem now from the menu and hit Power to confirm.

That's it, you're done. Your Nexus should now boot successfully. The very first boot process takes several minutes by the way, so do not be surprised if it takes longer than what seems usual.

So... have you manually upgraded to Android 5.0 Lollipop?

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Go to comment (81)
Mark Wilson

Mark Wilson
Freelance writer

Mark cut his journalist teeth writing for print magazines at the turn of the millennium, and then embraced the web as his permanent office. He has worked with just about every mobile operating system that has existed since the early 90s, but found Android to be his spiritual home. Always on the hunt for the newest and most exciting hardware and software, Mark is keen to share his discoveries.

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  • 2
    Mark Dee Nov 30, 2014 Link to comment

    I'm getting the "archive does not contain ..." messages that others have mentioned but things seem to proceed OK until I get a malloc error.

    erasing 'userdata'...
    OKAY [ 7.703s]
    formatting 'userdata' partition...
    Creating filesystem with parameters:
    Size: 13725835264
    Block size: 4096
    Blocks per group: 32768
    Inodes per group: 8144
    Inode size: 256
    Journal blocks: 32768
    Blocks: 3351034
    Block groups: 103
    Reserved block group size: 823
    Created filesystem with 11/838832 inodes and 93654/3351034 blocks
    malloc: Permission denied
    Cannot generate image.
    FAILED ()
    finished. total time: 241.266s

    Thoughts? Thanks.

    Fai Deemer

    • 2
      Mark Dee Nov 30, 2014 Link to comment

      Worked around it by extracting cache.img and userdata.img and manually flashboot'ing them. Lollipop is running for me. Thanks for putting together the page.

  • 1
    Mohammad Arif Nov 27, 2014 Link to comment

    Hello, i did exactly everything you wrote and it worked perfectly fine, although i faced few issues earlier..
    I have one question to ask you.
    now that i have flashed my nexus 4 to kitkat 4.4.4., it had again started to give me notifications about system update to 5.0, which i am unable to disable, nor can i find the google services framework in : Setting>apps>google services.

    how can i disable that particular notification, as its very annoying.


  • 1
    Patryk Banaś Nov 24, 2014 Link to comment

    Hello. I have a little problem. I used a Nexus root toolkit to install it to my Nexus 32 Gb model. And with this 32 Gb apper the problem. Now i have only 12 free space....but should be 29... Someone can help ?

  • 1
    Tara Taqa Nov 22, 2014 Link to comment

    ROADBLOCK: I was getting an error, but fixed it by scrapping your bat file and googling "missing system.img error". Did it one line at a time and now everything works great!

  • 1
    Geordy ior Nov 19, 2014 Link to comment

    What if I get stuck at the Google logo and I don't have any custom recovery like CWM. How do I wipe the cache ? Tx

  • 1
    Vinicius Nov 18, 2014 Link to comment

    I can't understand the "Unlock bootloader" step:

    - "Press the Volume Up button on the Nexus 5 to accept the command and press the Power button to confirm. The bootloader will now be unlocked, and all data will be lost."

    Until when should I press the Volume Up button to accept the command? Or which option should I press the Power button? Thx in advance.

    • 1
      Vinicius Nov 18, 2014 Link to comment

      Because I pressed it at the Start option and it just restarted the OS and my all my data was still on place.

    • 1
      Vinicius Nov 18, 2014 Link to comment

      Ah forget it, it just started to update by itself :)

  • 1
    Angel Torres Nov 17, 2014 Link to comment

    Also I can't extract the factory image file it says the file is broken.

  • 1
    Angel Torres Nov 17, 2014 Link to comment

    I need help, this flash.all bat file doesn't appear on my laptop I can't do anything I already unlocked my phone's bootloader and everything.

  • 1
    deepak cano Nov 16, 2014 Link to comment

    gets stuck at fast boot mode. are there any videos where i can refer?

  • 1
    Abdulrahman Rmaileh Nov 16, 2014 Link to comment

    I have nexus 5... But still didn't get it.
    When I press check now for the update it does nothing! It keeps telling last checked 1-1-1970... Is that a problem?

  • 2
    Rob Maria Nov 16, 2014 Link to comment

    Anyone having trouble installing after downloading and successfully getting your phone connected to ADB, follow these instructions. After you download and extract all the ADB files and Image files, you need to copy and paste all the files from the extracted image folder in to the same folder that contains the ADB and Fastboot files, then run flash-all.bat. This is important, and should be clarified here. When you run the flash-all.bat file, the code calls on the fastboot and other executables, which push the .img files to the device. If the files are not directly present in the same directory, the batch file cant see them.

  • 1
    Yaseer Nov 15, 2014 Link to comment

    How To Directly Download Apk On Your Phone & Computer
    Check Out Here -

  • 1
    Aditya Wicaksono Nov 15, 2014 Link to comment

    i have problem here, after fastboot oem unlock. i try flash-all.bat, but the fastboot not recognized internal and external. please help

  • 2
    Jens Clarberg Nov 15, 2014 Link to comment

    Yep, it's worked now just by cheer luck. I didn't do anything differently to the previous times but hey! Thanks for your help.

    • 2
      Void Nov 15, 2014 Link to comment

      no problem, glad it worked this time =)

  • 2
    Void Nov 15, 2014 Link to comment

    that's what I saw before it went to the swirling colors and about 3-5ish minutes later it worked

  • 2
    Jens Clarberg Nov 15, 2014 Link to comment

    After executing the flash-all.bat file my phone just stays on the flying colourful dots.. I have tried going in to recovery mode and wiping data, and trying again but it doesnt get further than this. Help!

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