Android 4.3 started rolling out a couple of days back to all Nexus devices (you can see a list of new features in Android 4.3 here), and just like we published a guide for manually updating the Galaxy Nexus and Nexus 4 to the latest version of Android via the OTA update files, we’re now doing the same for Google’s tablets, the Nexus 7 and Nexus 10, so you can update without having to wait for the rollout to reach your device/country.
The OTA update can be manually installed only on devices that are running on completely stock Android 4.2.2 and and no system files have been modified. It is okay if you’re rooted (though you will lose root access after the update), but if you’ve deleted, changed or otherwise made any changes to system files, the update will fail to install.
NOTE: If you’ve modified your system files or are on a custom ROM, then you should follow this guide to update to Android 4.3, which will wipe all your data (you can back up and restore later on) but allow you to update without issues.
So, without wasting any more time, let’s look at the procedure to update to Android 4.3 from stock Android 4.2.2 on the Nexus 7/10.
- Your tablet must be running a totally stock version of Android, without any modifications made to the system files (it’s okay if you’re rooted). It doesn’t matter if you’ve unlocked the bootloader or not.
- The update needs your tablet to be on build number JDQ39 (or JDQ39B in case of the Nexus 70. Check the build number in Settings » About tablet. If it’s not JDQ39, then the update will fail to install.
- Download and install the Android SDK → from here. This will install the necessary drivers for your Nexus 4 on your computer. Remember that even though your device’s storage shows up on the computer when you connect it, the Android SDK drivers are separate and are required for the update process.
- Download the OTA update file for your device from the links below. For the Nexus 7 Wi-Fi-only model, there are two different updates: one for updating from build number JDQ39, and the other from JDQ39B. Be sure to download the correct one after checking the Settings » About tablet screen to see which build number your tablet is on.
Nexus 7 – From JDQ39 (Wi-Fi model) | Nexus 7 – From JDQ39B (Wi-Fi model) | Nexus 7 (Wi-Fi+3G model) | Nexus 10
- Download the Fastboot files from the link below. Extract the “Fastboot.zip” file to obtain four files named AdbWinApi, AdbWinUsbApi, fastboot, and adb.
Download Fastboot | Filename: Fastboot.zip
- Then, copy the OTA update file (copy, don’t extract) to the folder where you have those four files from the previous step.
Install Android 4.3
- Turn off your device, then boot it into fastboot mode (also called bootloader mode, you’ll see Start written on the screen in this mode, see screenshot below). To do that, follow the key combinations given below.
- Nexus 7: Press and hold Volume Down, then press and hold Power.
- Nexus 10: Press and hold both Volume Up and Volume Down, then press and hold Power.
- Once you see the fastboot menu and “Start,” press Volume Up/Down to navigate to “Recovery mode” and press the power button to boot into recovery.
- You will then see an Android with a red exclamation point. Now hold down the Power button then press the Volume Up key to see the recovery menu.
- Select the apply update from adb option in recovery by scrolling to it using the volume buttons and selecting it with the power button.
- Connect your tablet to the computer now. Wait for the fastboot drivers to finish installing if this is the first time you’re connecting your device to the PC in recovery. For reliability, ensure that you use a USB port at the back if you are using a desktop computer, as the front panel ports can be loose and cause problems.
- Now, open that folder where you have the fastboot files, hold down the SHIFT key on keyboard and right-click on an empty area while holding SHIFT, then click on “Open command prompt here” from the right-click menu.
- Now, type in this command in the command prompt window that has opened to flash the update: adb sideload *name of file* (where *name of file* is to be replaced by the update file’s name, like 61a7c100c769fdf081116d4544f0ac6cfadd803d.signed-mantaray-JWR66V-from-JDQ39.61a7c100.zip for the Nexus 10. If you don’t wish to enter the full name, just enter the first few letters then press the Tab button on keyboard, which will auto complete the file name)
- After you enter the above command, you will see the “sending: sideload” message in the command prompt, and once it reaches 100%, the update will start installing on your tablet.
- Once the update finishes installing, select reboot system now on the tablet to reboot it and boot up into Android 4.3. Enjoy!